May 29, 2009

The Cosmos Inside Our Cells - DNA Series Part 2

So how many of you guys got freaked out by the last post? Ok, ok, you know what would make a fun story? If as well as reacting to our emotions, our cells that have gone AWOL created a 3-D holograph representation of us. Now that would be spooky, don’t you think?

Anyway, the reason for today’s post is that I want to talk a little about this one experiment:

“[Experiments] conducted between 1992 and 1995 ... began by isolating human DNA in a glass beaker and then exposing it to a powerful form of feeling known as coherent emotion. According to Glen Rein and Rollin McCraty, the principal researchers, this physiological state may be created intentionally by ‘using specially designed mental and emotional self-management techniques which involve intentionally quieting the mind, shifting one’s awareness to the heart area and focusing on positive emotions.’ They performed a series of tests involving up to five people trained in applying coherent emotion. Using special techniques that analyze the DNA both chemically and visually, the researchers could detect any changes that happened.
...The bottom line: Human emotion changed the shape of the DNA! ... ‘These experiments revealed that different intentions produced different effects on the DNA molecule causing it to either wind or unwind.’” (The Divine Matrix, Gregg Braden).

So it appears that the reason for our cells reaction to our emotions is because our DNA reacts to it (it sounds so very mathematical, doesn’t it? What affects the whole affects its individual elements as well. You know, the whole Venn diagram stuff).

But if it can react to positive emotions, I’m sure it can react to negative ones as well. If only we knew how to interpret those changes in our DNA, how they affect us, our health, our psyche.

And this brings me to another study that has been undertaken that sheds some light on this question (I know, I know, I said I’d only talk about one, but bear with me, please--I apologize for the extra work m(_ _)m ):

“There is now strong evidence that our perception of how much love and caring we receive as young children from our parents can be a major influence on our health later in our life. One famous study has followed the health of Harvard graduates from the 1950s to the present day, and has found an increased incidence of hypertension, coronary heart disease, duodenal ulcers and alcoholism in those who, as students, used few positive, loving words to describe their parents.” (The Human Antenna, Dr. Robin Kelly).

So here is what I posit: the fact that our propensity to become sensitive to more serious diseases as we age is linked to the emotions we’ve felt growing up to that point, as it has affected (either strengthened or weakened) our DNA and, thereby, our cells.

So to lead healthier lives, we need to be positive, try to shed away our fears, our negative feelings, all these emotions that basically bring ourselves down. And we need to act the same way towards others as well.

I know, easier said than done. So I promise to try not to get angry with idiotic people on the road anymore, even if they should not technically be on the roads. And I promise to try not to berate myself so much in life anymore.

Obviously easier said than done, but I will sincerely give these resolutions a serious go. I like being healthy and happy and all that jazz. And after all, don’t people say the human body is a divine temple?

May 15, 2009

Blood Is Thicker Than Water - DNA Series Part 1

Growing up, my brother and I (like many other siblings I expect) used to get into quite a few skirmishes which, at the time, could sometimes seem quite big (I would go upstairs and slam my bedroom door repeatedly and vow never to speak to him again).

Well, on such occasions, my dad would often talk to both my brother and me, saying that we needed to care for each other for, when he and mom were gone, we would be all we got. And that what kept us linked was stronger than anything else, stronger than what we’d have for our respective spouses.

Yes, my brother and I have mended, about a million times by now. But I wonder whether, apart from growing up with each other, perhaps my father’s words did have a deeper meaning than at first believed, one that is etched into our very own genetic code. . .

We’ve all heard those stories of identical twins living separately who ended up having very similar lives in the end (sometimes even having the same sorts of things happen to them in the same year and ending up with wives with the same first name!). Could this be a “subtle” sign of how our blood really does link people of the same family together?

Here’s an experiment recounted in The Divine Matrix by Gregg Braden that has interesting possibilities, if true:

“In a 1993 study reported in the journal Advances, the Army performed experiments to determine precisely whether the emotion/DNA connection continues following a separate, and if so, at what distances? The researchers started by collecting a swab of tissue and DNA from the inside of a volunteer’s mouth. This sample was isolated and taken to another room in the same building. . . . In a specially designed chamber, the DNA was measured electrically to see if it responded to the emotions of the person it came from, the donor who was in another room several hundred feet away.
In this room, the subject was shown a series of video images. . . . While he was doing so, in another room his DNA was measured for its response.
When the donor experienced emotional “peaks” and “dips,” his cells and DNA showed a powerful electrical response at the same instant in time. Although distances measured in hundreds of feet separated the donor and the samples, the DNA acted as if it was still physically connected to his body.”

Isn’t that insane? I have to say that, ever since I’ve read this, I’ve felt really guilty about all the hair and dry cells I’ve left all over the place since being born. I mean, what if I’ve made someone really upset one day ‘cause I was pissed off about something and he/she ended up stepping on my lonely strand of hair at the same time and ended up getting all pissed off too?

Anyways, the author goes on to wonder whether this effect could explain why some people have been said to change personalities after an organ transplant that can be traced all the way to the donor. So wouldn’t it be the same for identical twins and, to some extent, siblings who share the same parents and, thereby, the same “blood?”


PS: Here's an awesome picture of a nebula that looks like a DNA strand.
You can find the National Geographic article about this nebula here.

May 1, 2009

There is no instinct like the Heart. - Lord Byron, Don Juan.

Why is it that when I get scared, or excited, my heart starts beating faster?

Why is it that when I feel sad, or filled with love and compassion, my heart squeezes?

People used to think that emotions came from the heart. Yet, along with the rise of science, came the conviction that all our emotions are the product of our brain, of the chemical changes and release of hormones instigated by it. And that the heart, is just a muscle whose only purpose is to circulate blood (yes, Count Dracula and his vampiric horde, I’m sure, are very grateful for this essential tool that keeps their drinking founts alive).

But is this fact entirely true?

“Although scientists over the past 30 years have never disputed the fact that the human heart is indeed a pump, they have also discovered it to be much more besides. It is now known to be a hormone-secreting gland responsible for producing chemicals that balance the autonomic (or involuntary) nervous system. It is also an organ littered with receptor sites for molecules of emotion.” (The Human Antenna, Dr. Robin Kelly)

So technically, we have 2 brains in our system (put that way, it sounds a little creepy). Although one could argue (based on a previous post) that we have three brains. Which could explain why I so often argue with myself.

Now that I mention this, I wonder whether those stories of people who’ve received a heart transplant and suddenly find a change in their behavior (kind of like in the movie Return to Me) could be linked to this whole brain = heart thingamajig?

But that’s not all of it. (Thought you could get off that easy, huh?)

No, what’s really intriguing is that it has been found that “[t]he heart is our body’s energetic center, with an electromagnetic field 5000 times stronger than our brain.” (The Human Antenna, Dr. Robin Kelly)

How cool is that? So not only does our heart work as another brain, but it also has its own electromagnetic field which, as it turns out, is way stronger than the one around our brain (for the sake of avoiding arguments, let’s just call the brain in our head the “Main Brain”). And it extends a lot further too.

Which is probably why evidence suggests that “the electromagnetic signals generated by the heart have the capacity to affect others around us. [The Institute of HeartMath’s] data indicate that one person’s heart signal can affect another’s brainwaves [(even when not directly touching, as long as they are close to each other)], and that heart-brain synchronization can occur between two people when they interact. Finally, it appears that as individuals increase psychophysiological coherence, they become more sensitive to the subtle electromagnetic signals communicated by those around them.”

A lot of blah-blah to say that we communicate through our electromagnetic field (just as I suspected), and that the strongest of those fields is the one created around our heart.

So perhaps Professor X's secret to his incredible power (see previous post) was not that he had a super powerful Main Brain, but that his heart was really strong.

And maybe that is another reason why we should generally follow our hearts rather than our minds (is anyone else thinking about The Lion King right now?).

"Since emotional processes can work faster than the mind, it takes a power stronger than the mind to bend perception, override emotional circuitry, and provide us with intuitive feeling instead. It takes the power of the heart." (Doc Childre, Founder, Institute of HeartMath)

-- Alessa

PS: Of all the vampires here, which is your favorite?

NB: For those of you interested in this particular topic, I recommend reading, on top of the book mentioned above, this site here (where I also found the electromagnetic field surrounding the heart):