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Series: The healing power of water Part I

THE ONE WHO UNDERSTANDS WATER

DR. EMOTO'S EXPERIMENTS

Celebrated by some, ridiculed by others. For over ten years, Dr. Masaru Emoto has been trying to use crystal photographs to prove that water can "think" - an endeavour which propelled him to fame overnight. There is no questioning the fascinating quality of his pictures. However, the conclusions he draws from his experiments are debatable. Trailblazer or questionable scientist? A journey through the world of the alternative therapist.

Everything is water
No matter who the evolutionary researcher or philosopher is considering the origin of all things earthly, water always pops up somewhere. This is quite understandable, for without the all-important fusion of those two hydrogen and one oxygen atoms, humankind would have no chance of survival at all. It is not only that every organism on Earth consists primarily of water, but the continual exchange of the elementary liquid is also required to keep the whole metabolic process in working order. It was these facts that also led the alternative therapist Dr. Masaru Emoto to water and the search for its hidden properties.

Intellectual fusion
As an alternative therapist, Emoto spent many years exploring common properties in the conditions of his patients and the corresponding course of therapy. The high proportion of water in the human body gave him the idea that a closer understanding of its material properties might possibly be a key to new healing methods. Above all, he wanted to find out more about the fusion and the storage capacity of water molecules. Thus he looked for the "third part", as the English poet D. H. Lawrence put it in 1929, "Water is hydrogen two parts, oxygen one part, and something else, though we don't know what it is."

Photographic water memory
Following in the footsteps of the French immunologist Jacques Beneviste, who claimed that he was able to detect a kind of "memory" in water as early as 1988, in 1994 Emoto began to take a closer look at the substance. He took samples from various kinds of water and froze individual drops at -20° Celsius. Then he photographed the resulting crystals at a temperature of -5° Celsius under the microscope. The results were phenomenal: Where the water was clean and clear, the frozen droplet had a well-formed and beautiful hexagonal crystal structure. Where it was polluted, as a rule no complete hexagons formed. The Japanese researcher then drew conclusions about the water quality of the individual crystals. An interesting theory, although critics found fault the verifiability of Emoto's experiments. In addition, they also drew attention to the fact that of the 50 pictures taken per sample, 49 have never seen the light of day. These accusations become particularly interesting with reference to further, even more extraordinary experiments by the alternative therapist.

Feel the perfection of form
Allegedly, the greenery in the house or in the garden thrives all the more if it receives attention in the form of positive words. Dr. Emoto also believes that plants have a consciousness.
He even goes one step further and suspects that it is the water within the cell structure that listens to, understands and responds to human feelings. To prove this, he labelled full water containers with positive and negative words like angel and devil, love and hate. The photographs of each of the frozen droplets speak for themselves: It seems that friendly words lead to bewitching crystal structures, while "evil" words on the other hand have a negative effect on their form.

Hado: Vibrations of love and thanks
Emoto was not satisfied just with investigating the effect of spoken - or "stuck on" - words. So he exposed distilled water to different pieces of music. As expected, the crystals created under these conditions show clear differences: Upbeat, lively compositions evidently generated vibrations that led to the formation of fascinatingly beautiful hexagons. When sad songs were played, the water responded with forms looking like hearts breaking. Heavy metal music completely destroyed the hexagonal structures. Emoto believes therefore, that water can store and transfer information and reflect moods. Since then, the Japanese researcher has termed the property that everything good favours the formation of microcluster structures, the proof of which is provided by brilliant, energetic images of water, as "Hado", in English, "life energy".

The questionable scientist's theories go even further however, for it seems he believes in a kind of collective telepathy, via which actions, thoughts and words even a long distance away can have an effect. His proof: He asked 500 Japanese Hado teachers to send their feelings of love to a container of tap water from Shinagawaku (Tokyo) on February 2, 1997, at 2 p.m. on the dot. Photographs of drops taken from this water and shock frozen showed, in contrast the pictures taken before the experiment, a beautiful, harmonious crystal.

Spirituality or panacea?
Emoto concluded that water reflects human thoughts. However, his research is yet to receive scientific recognition, because a repetition of his experiments under standardised conditions has failed thus far. So what is the significance of Emoto's work? No more and no less than breathtaking photos; Aesthetics seasoned with a pinch of spirituality? Or does water indeed respond to vibrations, music, the power of imagination and words? Does it truly have the ability to store information like a computer hard drive? And most importantly, does the fine quality of water which is treated with love and gratitude, the "information carrier of all life", have a healing effect on us and our environment? On the basis of Emoto's results, none of these questions can be answered with a definitive yes.

One thing is certain however. With his statements, books and lectures, Dr. Masaru Emoto fuels global debate. And it is not all that bad, for actually the scientific outsider has taken up an ancient theme that is a central principle in all religions, namely, the foundation of a harmonious coexistence in tune with nature, based on the principle of love and gratitude. And the fact that we would be better off with this is more or less beyond doubt, irrespective of all other realisations.