If Energy Reduces Pain… (Implications of Beliefs)

by Mike Sententia on November 27, 2013

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If energy reduces pain, it can affect nerve signaling.

If energy affects nerve signaling, it should be able to help with epilepsy (caused by over-activity in the brain, affecting 3% of the world’s population).

If energy affects nerve signaling, it should be able to alter moods.

If energy can alter moods, it should be able to help with depression (affecting 4.3% of adults worldwide).

If energy affects nerve signaling, it should also be able to transmit thoughts (telepathy).

Much of science happens by simply noticing the implications of a belief. If energy can reduce pain, it can also do all of these other things. The only options are (1) don’t believe energy can reduce pain, or (2) ask what’s missing, that keeps us from helping that 7% of the world’s population (more, once we add in a few more illnesses), and then research those missing pieces.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Ananael Qaa November 30, 2013 at 10:48 AM

Those don’t necessarily imply each other. There are a number of different possible models under which they don’t.

(1) The Chinese have been studying infrasound for a long time as a possible vehicle for Qi. Their observations seem to show that Qigong masters emit sound waves at certain low frequencies that make cellular processes work better in some fashion. Under that model, it could affect pain, epilepsy, and mood, but because of the implications of Shannon’s law it would probably not be useful for telepathy. Even if enough information could be transmitted, it would require at the very least line of sight which would kind of defeat the purpose.

(2) Let’s say energy only affects mood. Depression makes pain seem worse, and epilepsy may be worsened by stress. So by adjusting the subjective mental state of an individual, you could affect all three of those.

(3) Epilepsy may not be triggered by stress, in which case you would only be able to affect pain and mood under condition (2).

(4) Under some conditions, perception of pain can be diminished. Following an injury, certain processes happen that “tune down” the level of pain, probably an evolutionary adaptation to allow an injured hunter to make it home. But let’s say that mechanism is all that energy affects. It could reduce pain, but do nothing for epilepsy, depression, or telepathy.

Also, note that the basic assumption here is that subjective experience of pain is rooted in the firing of specific nerves. I will grant that these days that seems to be the model embraced by neuroscience, but the link between neural processes and subjective consciousness are still poorly understood.

And so forth. There are a bunch of different possibilities that your simple outline doesn’t take into account. Pain in and of itself is problematic – you can’t just equate a stronger pain sensation to stronger neural signals. One recent example is fibromyalgia. Researchers have found that people with the condition do not actually receive more or stronger peripheral nerve signals, but they perceive the signals as stronger than people without the condition.

Understand, I think you’re correct in your base assertion that magick can work on all these things, and I’m being a bit of a devil’s advocate here. I’ve never suffered from epilepsy, and it would be an interesting experiment, making an anti-epilepsy talisman and see if it reduces the incidence of seizures (which is easy to measure). From personal experience I do know that it helps with both pain and depression. I’m just not necessarily convinced that this action is due to the direct effect of energy on specific nerves, as there are so many other possibilities to consider.

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Mike Sententia December 7, 2013 at 3:39 PM

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