Sunday, May 28, 2006

Debunking Crystal Healing

In a previous post on this blog, I discussed one of the main texts about crystal healing --- Melody's Love is In the Earth --- and showed that some of the advice presented there was actually dangerous.

Today, I'll discuss the evidence against crystal healing.

Crystal healers allege that crystals have "energy" that can be sensed. They report sensations such as warmth or tingling when a crystal is held in the hand, and that crystals can interact with energy in the body, with resultant medical effects. For example, this web page qujotes Marcel Vogel as saying "The crystal is a neutral object whose inner structure exhibits a state of perfection and balance. … Like a laser, it radiates energy in a coherent, highly concentrated form, and this energy may be transmitted into objects or people at will. … With proper training, a healer using a crystal can release negative thoughtforms which have taken shape as disease patterns."

Is there any actual evidence for this view? Although crystal healers like to call their practice "scientific", they never cite any controlled scientific studies supporting their claims. (Indeed, Melody reports that many of her claims were "channeled".)

The only scientific studies I have been able to find on the topic of crystal healing are by Christopher French and his colleagues at Goldsmiths College, University of London. These studies do not seem to be available on the web, although there is a news article here. Since they do not seem to be well known, I summarize the results here.

In a 1999 paper presented at the Sixth European Congress of Psychology in Rome, French and Lynn Williams gave a paper entitled "Crystal clear: paranormal powers, placebo, or priming?" In this paper they explored the possibility that the sensations that crystal practitioners report may be due, in part, to "priming"; that is, expecting certain sensations after being told or reading about them in reference books. They used 80 volunteers, half of which were male. The volunteers included customers from a New Age store, as well as undergraduates and non-students. Participants were given either a natural quartz crystal to hold, or a fake crystal made of glass. They were asked to report sensations such as tingling, heat, relaxation, and mood change. Those who had been "primed" to expect certain sensations reported these sensations more frequently (p = .008) than those who had not been primed. However, there was no difference in effects reported between those who handled the real crystal and those who handled the fake crystal.

French repeated the study with Hayley O'Donnell and Williams in a paper presented to the British Psychological Society Centary Annual Conference in Glasgow in 2001. Part of the motivation for the replication was that the original study was not double-blind, as the experimenter (Wiliams) was aware of which crystals were real and fake. The 2001 study was double-blind. This time, the "priming" did not have a significant effect, but once again, there was no difference in effects reported between real and fake crystals. The study concludes "...the fact that the same effects were found with both genuine and fake crystals undermines any claims that crystals have the mysterious powers which they are claimed to have. Instead, the power of suggestion, either explicit or implicit, seems to be the not-so-mysterious power that may convince many that crystals have the potential to work miracles".

I doubt these studies will convince crystal healers, any more than Emily Rosa's debunking of therapeutic touch has affected that practice.

266 comments:

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Unknown said...

This is March 24, 2017; are these crystals still being bought for healing and various other purposes mentioned on this blog page (putting aside they are pretty, at same distance) ???

Unknown said...

Props to Jeffery Shallit, I've never seen a more level headed, dedicated blogger. You keep doing you. This blog is a terrific example of confirmation bias, placebo effect, and conservatism bias.

RonC: "there are people like me electrosensisitivity can feel all crystals, all kinds of electromagnetic" Straight text book example, you're using your own perceived feelings as evidence to yourself that healing works. While you likely feel certain ways when holding rocks, the confirmation bias and placebo effect hand-in-hand can produce rather convincing results. So please conduct a double-blind experiment and report the results. Please, if you can prove what you're feeling comes from the rock, by all means do it! That will be truly ground-breaking science!

Like Lucy Asian said about those french studies on crystal healing "the facts of the experiments were that most people DID indeed feel crystal effects. With real AND fake crystals." That's the key issue here, if you believe in crystal healing, you mind has the capacity to create convincing emotions/effects. No one is saying you aren't feeling anything, because you likely are... however the SOURCE of these feelings most likely lays in your mind, not the crystal in your hand.

Unknown said...

I am from the future, 2017, and had to come here to agree with you... lol

Anonymous said...

Bravo Mr. Shallit,

You have been defending this topic for close to 10 years!
These ignorant people have set their minds on their beliefs and will never change. You on the other hand, are a true scientist in the you expect observable evidence to be presented. I have to argue with these same idiots on other social media platforms. No one seems to know what the scientific method is or care to look into what peer reviewed article are.
Let them stay ignorant and stupid, I now see these kinds of people as children.

Anonymous said...

WOW, you have been battling these ignorant people on this subject for almost 10 years!!!
You are a true hero. These idiots that believe this non-sense wouldn't know what the scientific method is even if you showed it to them in cartoon form because they have already accepted the "truth" about what they believe.
At least I get to laugh at their stupidity.

Thank you for continuing to fight ignorance, it's kind of a losing battle but well worth it.

1111 said...

LMAO... Your whole argument is based on reading an ARTICLE of a study. Hey I got some studies by Diederik Stapel that will blow your mind!

Jeffrey Shallit said...

You seem confused. In scientific terms, a study is an article. That is what we call studies, both in published or unpublished forms. In both cases I have read the original work by the authors.

If you have any evidence of fraud, present it. Otherwise you do not get to come on my blog and suggest that the authors have behaved fraudulently in any way.

Unknown said...

Science doesn't really defeat philosophy because you dont really know if everything that exist is reproducible. One may argue that esoteric systems are systems meant to to remain secret by the universe. Quantum physics has shown the very act of measuring something can have an effect on the results. The problem is that its easy to measure certain things but very hard to measure other things. As far as philosophy goes we're all dictated at the core by solipism. We really dont know anything, for all you know the universe could be playing tricks. Philosophically speaking even though it may be pragmatic to say, hey you know you guys really should go to a doctor first, it makes no pragmatic sense to disregard peoples spiritual opinions outright if you as a scientist realize that placebo effects do help people. The hippocratic oath is first do no harm, oddly you actually can do harm by trying to convince someone that a placebo is wrong. I mean there is nothing wrong in presenting studies and calling it a scientific ideology and letting people decide whether they like that ideology, but to argue against people who believe that the scientific ideology is wrong is futile, because actually there's no way to gather evidence that the entire philosophy is correct. There is also no pragmatic reason to do so as people often get benefit out of their beliefs. You act as though the placebo effect is worthless, but its not, that's why people do it. In chinese herbal medicine they dont isolate the placebo effect, oddly that actually makes more sense. Why? Well if it works well, it works well. Now its almost shown theres different levels to the placebo effect, I personally believe that our brain has a tendency to believe, effort in = effort out. I believe therefore we get a stronger placebo effect from like say acupuncture than a pill, perhaps a stronger effect from a nasty tea than a pill too. There's studies to show even skeptics may benefit from placebo. So from a pragmatic prospective it actually makes more sense to study and use placebos than to try to avoid them. Its also probably just best to let people have the positive effects of their spiritual beliefs than to try to fully disrupt that. I personally have crystals, I personally would love for crystals to do something but I understand the scientific perspective. For me, it doesn't stop me from enjoying them, it doesn't stop me from wondering if there’s more to it than meets the eye, it doesnt stop me from acting as though there is. What it does stop me from doing is going to a crystal shop instead of a doctor. Will I do both? Sure why not. I think its best when people dont only use one form of belief system in there life. My philosophy is perspectivism. The idea is that every perspective holds some value, even just for the fact that it exists, not every perspective holds the same amount of value perhaps. If I describe a chair from the front I am correct in my description, if someone else describes it from the back they may have a totally different idea of what that chair may be but the description may be totally accurate. Now If someone goes to that chair on drugs and says the chair is talking well according to their perception it was, now why was there perception altered so the chair would talk, why was the chair saying one thing and not the other. Why did the fate of this mans brain chemistry happen to just be in such a way that those things happened. It still somehow existed some way in our world for that idea to exist, which means it exists. To totally take value away from any idea that exists oddly can cause harm to our diversity. Did you know that some of the founders of quantum physics believed in quantum mysticism? ... Continued to next post

Unknown said...

Werner Heisenberg and Erwin Schrödinger both believed this and were influenced by the ideas of Taoism and Qi, which may have contributed to their less conventional theories that progressed the science, where people like Einstein may have failed to develop those theories in that way because of a rationalist point of view. The fact is Germany at that time was quite obsessed with mysticism even in the scientific community but as Germany lost the war the more rationalist perspective took hold as that was the way the American science community swayed. Now I have looked into trying to find a scientific reason why quantum mysticism isn’t a viable theory. I have tried to look into it and well it seems scientists generally site that well quantum physics has to take conventional physics at some point, yet quantum physics doesn’t have on theory but many on how that happens. It also seems that quantum physics leaks into our world and its shown by the fact that mathmatical equations using it are used in engineering and many other things. Now I could be totally wrong as a lay person looking into complex physics but as far as I can tell its hard to say that quantum physics has nothing to do with the outcomes complex chaotic events, like in chaos theory. The whole Idea that the flap of a butterfly may cause a hurricane over time well, wouldn't the interactions of these particles have a similar effect. What I’m saying is its hard to say that our fate isn’t determined by something a little more complex than this one to one/ one to many relationship we have with conventional causality, if that form of causality is quite obviously disrupted at the quantum level, isn’t it hard to say that it isn’t subtly disrupted at our level. Now you seem to say well its on the metaphysics point of view to prove their philosophy, but actually its really hard for you to prove your philosophy. You can say ok well these statistics say this and that, ok ok but, prove that statistics mean something, prove that your past is really the past even, you can keep going deeper and deeper. This is why you can’t go to someone and say hey you have to take your philosophy and make it work in mine. Science isn't truth it is a philosophy. Does that philosophy have a lot of pragmatic benefit to society, yes, but so do other philosophies, those contradictory philosophies often resonate off each other as well for pragmatic benefit. Now I personally challenge you or anyone you or anyone knows to actually give me a good reason for quantum mysticism being an invalid theory, I dont really care if it’s a very complicated answer from a physicist, I would very much like to know and would research the terms they use to explain as far as I’m concerned it seems as though it just culturally fell out of favor. This article is one source that I found that kinda made me feel that way as I looked for a viable answer, https://phys.org/news/2009-06-quantum-mysticism-forgotten.html, which I honestly could not find, it also is the source that I used to say that those scientists where mysticists. There was also one book written in the 1975 called "The Tao of Physics" written by an actual physicist that defended this point of view, although I have not personally read it yet. Obviously the 70's was a time of resurgence of interest in these types of philosophies. Most of the time the argument for scientists is well these people who believe this know nothing about physics but this person who wrote this book is an obvious exception to this. So I am personally still waiting for a good argument in the contrary that doesn’t use ad hominem or appeal to authority fallacies, you cant just say oh quantum mysticism is a pseudoscientific theory and not explain in detail how exactly its proven to be unscientific, you can’t say oh a bunch of people who are trying to prove this are all using quantum physics in an incorrect way thus that that theory is wrong. ...Continued to next post

Unknown said...

That's generally the thing I’ve got out of it is scientists are using people who use quantum physics in an incorrect way to prove their ideas are wrong in terms of quantum mysticism, so they call it pseudo-science without anything backing up that it is incorrect, which it’s on science to prove a theory is unscientific to call it pseudo-science not the other way around. You have a strong issue with bias in your own scientific community if you don’t have enough people challenging a certain viewpoint. It doesn't matter if your representing a religious institution or the scientific institution, people use the power those philosophies hand to them to suppress other peoples ideologies. In science it may be hard to just say just whatever you want to say is true yet its up to the scientists, what studies to do, how to do them, what theories they want to pursue. Oddly our society makes an exception in medicine for psychology calling it a science when actually a lot of the disorders for example are diagnosed in a subjective fashion, then traditional Chinese medicine is criticized for pulse checking or doing other things that are subjective, astrology is criticized by psychologists themselves for being autosuggestive, then they do personality tests, answers which may reflect a person’s thought patterns and desires at the time of taking the test than their actual personality. Then they read an equally autosuggestive personality type back to the client. All this is considered more ok.. Why? Because its simply a little better trick than astrology and there's no objective way yet to measure personality, other than maybe neurology which is not developed enough to really give a ton of answers for us yet. A lot of magic has become science and some has fallen from that path, the question is what will science become. Is science just a better trick than the last with equally incorrect results? I don’t feel there's enough people asking these really difficult questions, and there's a lot of people who latch on to one way of thinking. I feel the next evolution in thinking is to hold many beliefs, some that may even seem contradictory in order to get the good out of each one. That is the perspectivist approach.

Unknown said...

Chemotherapy is harmful and does not cure cancer, yet people pay tons of money to have it done in hopes that it will cure them of it and yet I don't see you saying anything about it.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Chemotherapy certainly cures cancer in many cases. Your claim is ridiculous.

The Eccentric Paranoid said...

Okay, so, I was curious, and I came out to see if I wasn't just giving into superstition (a sin in my religion) to buy healing crystals, and maybe I missed it, maybe it's in that orignal study, but I don't remember if French went too much into looking at his test subjects backgrounds, yes yes, I know he involved those New Agers and such but did he see who under went chakra cleansing and opening + development(self development and correction, I've heard, yes, I am super curious about EVERYTHING :P what gave it away?), I imagine that even if those crystals work, it doesn't matter if you are utterly incapable of letting go, and moving on, and such would be blocked beyond help (and would return to misery the moment placebo wore off), as the supernatural goes, so did he see if anyone was just there for a shortcut to happiness, or if were these content and happy yogis that have moved on, in life and now can actually use them, when people go "but, active at the time customers!" I think hypochondriac, because they think they have it, but they probably don't experience it like someone who actually does. If that was checked, and properly addressed then I guess I kinda missed it, in which case, "Oopsie daisy"

I Forgot To Ask...: what if that energy was kind of like dark matter in that we would need the proper instruments in order to even detect the stuff and kind of like those frequencies I read about (I acknowledge could be totally bogus) that they include in horror movies like, you can't conciously detect it but it still helps freak you out. (And no, I don't remember where I read some of this, it was a while ago, sadly.... :( )

Unknown said...

Glass is not quartz. Chemically, it has the same elements, but it is amorphous. This means that glass has no crystalline structure, unlike quartz. Also, glass is only 75% silicon dioxide (it also contains sodium, calcium, and sometimes lead).

Unknown said...

I was up front and center, and a participant when Marcel Vogel demonstrated the effect of crystals, thoughts and emotion on humans, plants and water, at a Crystal Congress in the ‘80s. Nobel laureates were in attendance.

Vogel measured these effects in real time with a device he built to detect the subtle energies. The results were immediately visible on the meter.

There is a Wealth if information on his research at marcelvogel.org

I have worn, and used crystals and stones to assist with Reiki, other healing modalities and energy work for 34 years. There is No Doubt.

�� Stárwindwalker ����‍♂️����

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Where can we read the doubly-blind peer-reviewed scientific studies on these claims, published by Marcel Vogel?

Oh, that's right, there are none.

Surely you know that the way science works is to conduct such studies, and then have the results confirmed by other, independent experiments.

Where can we read the confirmational studies published by others, in reputable scientific journals?

Oh, that's right, there are none.

Unknown said...

Empirical evidence exists. My recent comment recounting my experiences with Marcel Vogel is still not published. His quote is presented, yet none of his work is discussed.
I’ll keep this short in the event this thread is really dead.
Research further: marcelvogel.org

Unknown said...

Good. I found my comment, and the predicted reply from you.

Why did you use a quote from Marcel Vogel and not cite any of his work?

Oh, if it is Not Double-blind, you won’t even give it the due to see if it makes any sense.

You have your mind made up. You are Always going to find fault with crystal healing or energy work, because you do not want it to be true.

If you are this invested, to have this argument for 11 years, perhaps you should run the study yourself. Make it triple blind. And, don’t make it so simple and easily effected by the observers. People’s opinions about energy is not good enough. Try using Marcel Vogel’s equipment! This is not about measuring the placebo effect, it is about measuring the subtle energies.

Both Channeling and Meditation have been shown to effect brain function and energy fields. Perhaps, meditating with different kinds of crystals and stones will produce significant results.

Here’s a Meditation study to model yours on. Knock yourself out sciency guy.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/alicegwalton/2017/10/05/different-types-of-meditation-change-the-brain-in-different-ways-study-finds/?utm_source=FACEBOOK&utm_medium=social&utm_term=Malorie%2F&fbclid=IwAR2MOFgDeFGa1dJw78Sz-eQMUdyZq2cMNqZCl0FM-wThUdMrxIjNg9ZZs-4#1a5c50411f1e

Unknown said...

If people can influence the growth of ice crystals with thought and emotion, why wouldn’t crystals, ice, quartz or otherwise, not be able to effect the human body and energy system?

This double blind study was a reproduction of Dr. Masaru Emoto’s famous work with water/ice crystals...

https://www.academia.edu/6848293/DOUBLE-BLIND_TEST_OF_THE_EFFECTS_OF_DISTANT_INTENTION_ON_WATER_CRYSTAL_FORMATION

Stárwindwalker

Jeffrey Shallit said...

#1: Emoto's work is considered pseudoscience. Read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masaru_Emoto .

#2: Your question simply makes no sense. It's like saying, "if I can move a pencil with my fingers, why can't the pencil move my fingers too?"

#3: But even if it did make sense, why wouldn't crystals equally well do harm to the body? Why must all their effects be beneficial? Why don't crystal healers identify particular crystals as detrimental?

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Why did you use a quote from Marcel Vogel and not cite any of his work?

Because his "work" is not considered reliable.

Oh, if it is Not Double-blind, you won’t even give it the due to see if it makes any sense.

Yes. That is called 'science'. You know, the same science that was used to build the computer you're using to answer me with.

You have your mind made up.

Based on the evidence.

perhaps you should run the study yourself

No, it is not up to me to provide the evidence for your claims. You provide the evidence.

This is not about measuring the placebo effect, it is about measuring the subtle energies

Construct a repeatable experiment that measures those "subtle energies", and have it replicated several times by independent researchers. Then people will take you seriously, but not before.

Unknown said...

1. Emoto’s work has been replicated several times. I provided one of the papers with the results. This is what you ask for. Now you get it, and you claim it is pseudoscience, when science has Proven otherwise.
If you are too: A. Lazy; B. Stubborn; or, C. Arrogant, to read them, this is not Our Problem. It is yours.

2. No. It is not.

3. Crystals Can be used to hurt the body. Certain crystals should not be pointed at the body, because their Shape directs energy in a laser like point, rather than a wide angle, and can cause harm. Pearls, and to a lesser extent, moonstones should not be worn when experiencing negative emotion, because they both amplify emotional states. The previously mentioned lepidolite contains lithium and is slightly radioactive. It is Not a good idea to handle it with bare hands or keep close to the body for extended periods.

Go ahead, dismiss this offhand as well... You obviously think you know Everything there is to Ever Know about crystals!

Unknown said...

Ok. Don’t run the study. Stay in the Dark where you prefer. Spend another 11 years chasing after a negative for no personal gain. Sit upon your Throne of Doubt, King Nothing. Where is your Crown?

The experiment will be conducted. When I can figure out who best to go to to run it (I was kidding about you. No one needs another ridiculously biased outcome.), I would propose the possibility.

I’d be interested to see how you respond. It would be nearly as satisfying as putting the head of the Flat Earth Society up in a high altitude balloon to see the curve of the Earth for himself, when it becomes apparent at about 40K feet.

No comment on the Meditation study. Not surprised... You don’t appear to be willing to accept science if it offends your sense of what should and shouldn’t be. If I presented this future db paper, I’m almost certain you would find a way to ‘invalidate’ it.

I have confirmed, by asking a few questions, what I have observed by reading much of this thread; you don’t want the Truth. You can’t Handle it.

This conversation is like shoveling smoke...

Stárwindwalker

Unknown said...

Somebody missed... I sat at a table with Marcel Vogel and Several NOBEL LAUREATES and discussed the demonstrations he just conducted and the implications for the future of alternative healing. They did not dismiss his work out of hand, because they saw the Truth and the Value in it.

You dismiss it all because you Fear it...
Grow a pair of lobes...

Jeffrey Shallit said...

I sat at a table with Marcel Vogel and Several NOBEL LAUREATES and discussed the demonstrations he just conducted and the implications for the future of alternative healing. They did not dismiss his work out of hand, because they saw the Truth and the Value in it.

Umm, I hate to tell you, but...

Having been present several times when pseudoscientists tout their work...

Most people are too polite to say anything.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

1. Emoto’s work has been replicated several times. I provided one of the papers with the results.

Umm, no. Independent replication does NOT mean "Emoto writes another paper together with a scientist of questionable reputation."

https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Dean_Radin

Do you understand the word "independent"?

Pearls, and to a lesser extent, moonstones should not be worn when experiencing negative emotion, because they both amplify emotional states.

Where's the proof for this claim?

The previously mentioned lepidolite contains lithium and is slightly radioactive.

No, neither lepidolite nor lithium is radioactive.

On the other hand, crystal crackpot Melody suggests wearing betafite, which is radioactive.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

No comment on the Meditation study.

Because it has nothing to do with crystal healing. Sorry, I don't do the Gish gallop.

Unknown said...

Exactly! Closed. You are a Wall. And Mexico doesn’t even have to pay for it! Ha!

You prove over and over, you know nothing about crystals or energy. You are not qualified to comment on anybody’s belief or use of crystals, regardless of your claim of adherence to the scientific method.

Crystals are about Energy. The Meditation study measured Energy Changes in the Brain. Crystals are Tools to amplify, focus, direct and move Energy. When used In Healing Work, the crystal does Not Do The Healing. The Energy is changed in the Brain by the Patient, even if it is one’s Self. This is true of All medicine and Healing modalities. My suggestion to build an experiment around this model using different crystals, is a sound one. You don’t even have the decency to acknowledge as much.

I will leave you with a video, in 2 parts. It is the only thing I have found so far from the conference I was referring to. I do not agree with everything Ho says (baby crystals!...), and I’m almost certain you won’t watch, but I’m sure others will benefit from hearing it... This was 34 years ago. We’ve come a Long way, and we still have No Need to Prove it, scientifically. Proof will not silence disbelievers anyway, not those so deeply entrenched as you, Jeffrey.

Your Opinions of Our Practice and Work is Inconsequential...

Rick Stárwindwalker Royal

Unknown said...

More Proof you don’t know what you are talking about:

http://webmineral.com/data/Lepidolite.shtml#.XL8RLLplAlQ


“GRapi = 143.68 (Gamma Ray American Petroleum Institute Units)
Concentration of Lepidolite per GRapi unit = 0.70 (%)

Estimated Radioactivity from Lepidolite - barely detectable" ...But, Still Radioactive!

Jeffrey Shallit said...

There is no radioactivity in naturally-occurring Lithium.

The tiny amount of radioactivity in Lepidolite comes from its Potassium content. It is radioactive in the same sense that a banana is radioactive. Your advice "It is Not a good idea to handle it with bare hands or keep close to the body for extended periods" makes no sense at all, unless you apply it to bananas.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Crystals are Tools to amplify, focus, direct and move Energy. When used In Healing Work, the crystal does Not Do The Healing. The Energy is changed in the Brain by the Patient, even if it is one’s Self. This is true of All medicine and Healing modalities.

Yet this "energy" cannot be detected by our most sensitive scientific instruments.

Your other comments are just nonsense. Most medical treatments do not "amplify, focus, direct," or "move energy".

Unknown said...

I most certainly did Not make the comment you imply. Perhaps you misread, or I was not clear enough.

Crystals Do Not Heal. People do the Healing. Crystal are Tools. They are used as such because of the qualities I listed. They Are measurable. I Watched them being measured. I, was measured. I watched the Effects being measured. These same properties are why they are used in computers and communication.

But, Why listen to me?
https://
youtu.be/t15VNvHNj54
Listen to the Actual Scientist talk about the Science...

Stárwindwalker

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Nobody heals anything with crystals, especially not quacks and charlatans.

The use of crystals in computers has nothing to do with the claims made by crystal healers. Nothing at all.

The energies you claim exist do not, and are not measurable. If they were measurable, anybody in a lab can do it. Yet there are no peer-reviewed articles demonstrating the existence of these energies. They do not appear in any physics book.

Unknown said...

You are the Charlatan!

Actual Scientists are curious, ask questions and do not throw out the findings of Scientists out of hand. You ask Nothing. Except for proof. Pathetic.

You are Wrong.

I said I was measured. I was measured. I said the energy of the crystals was measured. It was measured. I didn’t dream it, imagine it, hallucinate it, or conjure up a vision of it. It was witnessed by well over a thousand people, INCLUDING NOBEL LAUREATES, who not only didn’t have a Problem with the measurements, they discussed them at length with Vogel, myself, my 1st wife and others. Anybody in a lab, with the proper equipment, CAN measure the Energies and the Effect of the Energies on water, plants and animals. The non-human type can’t talk or skew results. Placebo effect is Impossible.Yet they respond to Healing Energies, crystals, or Not.

The properties of a crystal are the properties of a crystal. Period, We find as many uses for those properties as possible for our benefit. It is how humans work. Just because You haven’t figured out how it works with the minuscule, terribly confined, attention seeking, self-important, ignorant matter clump you call a brain, does Not invalidate its uses by Others. The poor, little grey thing must be quivering with fear and loneliness within the ginormous ego space it finds itself...

Nobody enjoys being called a liar over and over.

Let a Huge Crystal Illuminate your Darkness!
Insert it Way Up There!!!

Jeffrey Shallit said...

What are "healing energies"? What particle mediates them? What units are they measured in? Where can I read an article in the peer-reviewed literature discussing them?

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Why is there nothing in any medical textbook used in medical school about "healing energies"?

Why is there nothing in my physics textbook about "healing energies"?

Unknown said...

Ah, good. Questions. Unfortunately, you don’t want to know the answers. They are for you to find. When you are ready.

I suggest taking another 11 years, Professor, and actually study crystals. I started when I was a little kid, with the rock set and chemistry set my Dad gave me. They are fascinating. So are numbers. I particularly find the Fibonacci Sequence and Phi most interesting. So did Vogel. So he cut his facets accordingly. Since numbers are your thing, why not look closely at his work, paying fine attention to his numbers. Perhaps you’ll see something there to change your attitude toward crystals. Your choice.

Nikolai Tesla thought quite highly of them as well... “In a crystal we have clear evidence of the existence of a formative life principle, and though we cannot understand the life of a crystal, it is nonetheless a living being”

I also find it quite Synchronistic our families immigrated from the same little town, and you were born on the same day as my 2nd Xwife (transitioned; couldn’t get the last word in with her either, til now.), and we are the same age. We may be Related! I am so amused right now...
:-D

Jeffrey Shallit said...

So you have no answers to the most basic questions about your claims. Not surprised.

I have written about numerology before, and given a talk about it. It's utter nonsense.

Tesla (his first name was Nikola, not Nikolai) was a smart guy who turned full-on crackpot in his later years.

Unknown said...

More to think about...

“Mitochondria and microtubules, in close association, form dendritic networks in which coherent photon emission can be channeled through the cell. Coherent photons modulate the electronic properties of biomolecules, a QED-like mechanism that can be used to holographically store information as well as initiate physicochemical responses in the cellular system. This system is referred to as the holographic information network of the mitochondrial reticular matrix.

Intercellular networks are formed by gap junctions and tunneling nanotubes, the latter of which contain filamentous mitochondria and microtubules that can connect multiple cells, enabling gestalt information transmission and processing. Quantum coherence and nonlocal phenomena can enable the cellular information system to perform massively parallel processing, enabling remarkable organizational synergy and unified orchestration of function.”

https://resonance.is/quantum-zeno-dynamics-superconducting-qubit/

The Force is Strong here!

Mitochondria (almost)= Midichlorians

Lucas didn’t just write this into his Space Fantasy/Hero’s Journey as a plot device. There is some teaching there...

I wonder if Gene Shallit touched on this in any of his critiques... Any relation?

Unknown said...

‘Nikolai’ was an autocorrect I missed. I’m well read on Tesla. Thanks for condescending. You might go “full on crackpot’ too, if most of your research and work was stolen, and the thief received all the glory, wealth and funding, and the work you were doing could have changed the world for the better.

Forgive me if I’m repeating myself... again, I do not see my reply from last week, or the several science links I sent supporting my statements on the Energy I have spoken about.

I said absolutely nothing about numerology.

I would like to make sure you get my answers, but I think I’ll wait to see if the originals show up before I waste my time, again...

Unknown said...

So, someone is fearing the scientific answers I provided in several replies now, will render his eleven years of dedication to Doubt, futile...

Rick Stárwindwalker Royal 5-6-19

Unknown said...

“Some materialistically inclined scientists and philosophers refuse to acknowledge these phenomena because they are not consistent with their exclusive conception of the world. Rejection of post-materialist investigation of nature or refusal to publish strong science findings supporting a post-materialist framework are antithetical to the true spirit of scientific inquiry, which is that empirical data must always be adequately dealt with. Data which do not fit favored theories and beliefs cannot be dismissed as priori. Such dismissal is the realm of ideology, not science.” ~ Dr. Gary Schwartz

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Gary Schwartz translated: "Waah! They won't publish my crappy papers!"

Unknown said...

https://neurology.arizona.edu/gary-e-schwartz-phd

https://www.researchgate.net/scientific-contributions/39671421_Gary_E_Schwartz

Evidence you reject and ignore...

You throw out what does not fit your preconceived notions...

Do you even Look at the links I’ve sent?

Again... Pathetic........

Rick Royal
8•8•19

RoohaniShop said...

Hello,

Basically it seems that there both sides are at a crossroads.

At this moment in time it's just people's experiences. Try it and see what happens.


Ahmed

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Did you even read the article? There is no evidence at all that crystal healing works.

RoohaniShop said...

So are you saying when there are no studies done on something that that something does not work?

And to use one study as proof that crystals do not work stands to no reason.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

No, I'm not saying what you claim.

You need to understand the burden of proof. If you claim crystal healing works, then it's up to YOU to provide the evidence and the studies that support your claim. It's not up to me to disprove your claim.

You could say that standing on your head and chanting the word "noodles" is a cure for cancer, but nobody needs to take this claim seriously unless you provide some studies that provide evidence.

So far no study has provided evidence that crystal healing works, and the few studies that have been done suggest just the opposite.

RoohaniShop said...

That is my point that if someone does come with a claim in this crystal healing and they say it works then why can’t it be believed in? Why is it thrown away when there are not studies to prove it?

Okay one thinks where is the proof? It doesn’t have to only be studies but why not by their experiences? So whatever healing they receive, etc. there is truth to that. One cannot just simply disregard something whenever there are no official studies to back it up. I highly doubt you wore your shirt this morning by thinking what studies were done for it in order for you to believe that it keeps you warm, etc. You experienced it, you’ve felt it work, etc.

Furthermore, I agree to your point that no one needs to take it seriously. However, no one needs to dismiss. Just try it for yourself. Its not like one will become poor by purchasing a crystal. At worst you can use it as decoration 😊

Regarding the studies, I only see one double blind study posted. Perhaps you can share more? And at the end of the day its only a suggestion that it might not work. But I have to say why can’t people just try it and judge for themselves?

Jeffrey Shallit said...

"why can’t it be believed in"?

Because we're not talking about wearing shirts. We're talking about people's health, where there exists an abundant and well-evidenced body of knowledge about how to treat people with diseases.

Crystal healers who make wild claims are deceiving people about something for which they have no evidence, and discouraging people from seeking treatments for which there is evidence.

You want to make the claims? Then you do the studies.

RoohaniShop said...

You didn't answer my question regarding your shirt.

But if one wants to use crystal healing that is fine. At the end of the day people make their own decisions.

Me personally I like to use evidence based medicine most of the time. But I like to give people all their options. Now it is up to them to use it or not. Because if anything works then it should give results.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

I did answer; I pointed out that the comparison was nonsensical. We know how shirts work and if they don't, the consequences are not typically life-threatening. But no one has proposed any remotely plausible mechanism for how crystals could heal people. If you hold a belief without evidence that crystals can heal, why not hold a belief that crystals can damage your health, too? It simply makes no sense.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Oh, and you apparently make your money by convincing gullible people to buy this worthless crap. As they say, "It is difficult to convince a man of something when his salary depends on his not understanding it."

dean said...

With the current amount of data we have, there is a very simple way to determine whether someone claiming crystal healing (or therapeutic touch, or other things in that sphere) can cure X Y Z is a charlatan merely out to scam gullible people: if they're making those claims they're charlatans.

RoohaniShop said...

This is argument is not about life and death. It's about the whole point of having studies done in order to use something. I have yet to hear what studies you read before wearing your shirt /clothes. You use them without evidence. The best as you have already said is that you experienced it and found it to be useful and it works. Likewise, if people are finding benefits what is your issue with it?

Furthermore, your assertion that I sell crystals is baseless. Just because I writing about it doesn't mean I am selling it. As the infamous saying goes don't judge a book by its cover.

I guess we both have our own point of views.

Thank you for replying back to my points

Jeffrey Shallit said...

You are not being sensible. People have worn shirts for thousands of years, and we understand the physical principles of how they work.

Nobody understands the supposed physical principles by which crystals could heal anyone. No tests have been done that support that they do. The hypothesis that crystals could harm your health is just as believable as that they could help your health.

As for selling worthless remedies, anyone can follow the link to your blog to see that that is what you are doing. Why lie?

Jeffrey Shallit said...

This is argument is not about life and death.

Actually it is, if people substitute crystals for actual treatment of life-threatening conditions.

dean said...

"I have yet to hear what studies you read before wearing your shirt /clothes. You use them without evidence."

I didn't think you could make a statement with a higher stupidity level than your previous ones, but you've proven me wrong. Our clothing choices have no bearing on the health of anyone else, or even on ours (barring some odd allergy, I suppose). You are promoting something as a health aid that has absolutely nothing to offer on that front. Telling people with an illness to trust in something that is simply a scam isn't only dangerous to them, it's a disgusting thing to do.

syed21188 said...

@Jeffrey, you have yet to answer my question. The whole point whether being life and death or not has no basis in this discussion. So the hypothesis you are proposing is if something is not understood we should just not experience it ourselves?

Regarding your earlier point whether of what I sell or do not has no grounds in this discussion as you falsely alleged, I sell crystals as to which I do not.
Overall, I am a proponent and love science-based studies on things from natural remedies to crystals, etc. However, I do not just throw something aside if it doesn’t have any studies to back it up.

syed21188 said...

@dean, to use crude language doesn’t help facilitate any discussion. I’m amazed you can say stupidity in the first place but cannot see my points. My points are as such most of what you use in your daily life (i.e. clothing) you do not use studies to wear them. But you still wear them due to your aggregated experiences that you have accumulated throughout your life.

No what is disgusting is to close your eyes to things you don’t want to experience yourself. If other people have experienced relief let them try crystals. If they want conventional medicine, natural remedies, etc. let them use it how they seem fit. My point is you lay the options in front of them and let them choose. These are not babies you are talking about but adults and they have made their own decisions their whole lives. So, let them choose what they want to do. Its simple.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

You're being ridiculous.

If I drop a ball, I know it will fall to the ground because of the theory of gravity. I do not need to do a study on every different thing I could drop to know if they will fall to the ground.

Similarly, I know the physics of shirts, so I do not need to do a study of shirts to know what they can and cannot do.

You cannot point to any understanding of how crystals can heal. There is no scientific theory of healing crystals. It could just as well be that crystals harm your health. You refuse to address this possibility.

As for what you are selling, anyone can look at your blog and see the preposterous things you are selling (like the "7 days taskheer e hamzaad ring" for $5500 that you claim "will give the user the ability to contact their hamzaad in 7 days"). This is ridiculous and deceptive.

dean said...

"My points are as such most of what you use in your daily life (i.e. clothing) you do not use studies to wear them."

My description of your position holds -- and it seems to be far too mild. I don't know whether you are incapable of seeing the difference between making choices for daily clothing, where there is nothing that threatens the health of others, and endorsing bullshit like crystal healing, which can be directly a threat to health when someone who is ill chooses crystal over medical help, or whether you are so fundamentally dishonest you don't care that there is a difference.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

RoohaniShop just keeps making the same debunked points over and over with no new material, and is no longer welcome here.

Unknown said...

If you value truth and call yourself a skeptic the most reasonable thing to conclude about crystal healing is that there isn't enough research about it to conclude anything. That study proved crystals (or that specific crystal) don't have any real effect on you if you hold them for a while? Crystals have some amazing properties, like storing information, they are the reason we are able to access your blog and you are able to publish on it. The answer isn't black and white and we might never know for sure but I guarantee that discarding such an interesting thesis for one study that doesn't really disprove it as a whole is as useless as blindly accepting it. Furthermore anything related to magick and or religion can be, by definition, out of what we are able to test empirically, so I think it's safe to say that with our current research anyone who claims to know for sure that it works or doesn't is committing a fallacy, just like claiming the existence or lack there of of god(s), supernatural etc.. It's obviously more dangerous to claim it can heal diseases (specially they can actually be healed otherwise) but that doesn't discredit people who study this in order to better their lives.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

What's wrong with your argument is that it could be applied equally well to every single unproven treatment. For example, suppose I say that putting fried noodles on your head will cure cancer. By your argument, "the most reasonable thing to conclude is that there isn't enough research about it to conclude anything". Is that really sensible?

No, it isn't --- because we know something about the properties of noodles, and we know something about how cancer is caused and cured, and there is no plausible causal connection between a tonsorial application of noodles and a cure for cancer.

Your other remarks are also ill-thought-out. A perfect crystal actually holds very little information, because it can be described by a very small set of parameters. Yes, you can store information in a crystal, but the way to do this actually to alter part of the crystal structure, so it is no longer a perfect crystal. And anyway, "holding information" is not so amazing. A piece of paper can also "hold information", but I can't put a recipe for pasta on top of someone's head and have the pasta magically appear.

Even if crystals held information about cancer, say, how would that information possibly affect cancer in your body just by holding it or being near it? It makes no sense at all.

Furthermore, it is simply not the case that "crystals storing information" has anything to do with how information is currently stored in computers. You seem rather ill-informed about what disk and solid-state storage is.

Yet another mistake is your claim that it is impossible to test the claims of religion. In fact, there have been numerous studies of (for example) intercessory prayer, and the results have not been encouraging; see here.

Finally, your last mistake is to claim that anyone claims to "know for sure" about crystal healing. The claims are (a) there is no good evidence that it works and (b) there are extremely good reasons (i.e., our understanding of disease and crystals) for assigning the prior probability of the efficacy of crystal healing in the absence of any tests at all as extremely low. Combining (a) and (b) means that the most rational action, in the face of claims made about crystal healing, is to laugh.

Unknown said...

after reading the 'theist using one paracosm to argue against another' comment, i had to comment. you do on your blog what i do on my social media accounts and books. much respect for the rational thought, critical thinking, and crushing the construct where symbolism kills substance. i am not self promoting, i am trying to connect with another computer scientist who tries to genuinely understand his environment. thank you for existing.
https://github.com/distherapy
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08JDYW91G
https://distherapy.altervista.org

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