I have little insects inside me that are dining on my cartilage, bones and muscles. It seems they invaded my body either from animals or from dirt. These bugs used to eat plants, I’m told, but because they’ve been genetically modified, they now eat us. I also have a type of worm in my blood vessels. These creatures come in couples with the female living in the male body. I also have an overabundance of vitamin C in my kidneys and an inflammation of the sciatic nerve caused by a plasma virus. My prostate gland is infected by a brown mushroom. My red blood cells are a little too big caused by microbacilli that are either released by plants in my office or come from eating fruits that weren’t washed properly. Apparently these bacteria like to eat the fat from the red blood cells which then causes them to become bigger. (The blood cells, not the bacteria.) I also have a viral infection in my right eye. And my muscles don’t work properly because mushrooms have grown roots than tangle the muscle strings. I guess it’s a wonder that I’m still alive.
I’m not too worried though. The worms, bacteria, mushrooms and viruses were not revealed by blood tests or CAT scans. They were diagnosed by a different kind of scan. I was informed of all the nasty action going on inside my body by a clairvoyant/naturopath who scanned me from top to bottom with her eyes closed, sensing, as she claimed, “life frequencies.” Fortunately, she said, my problems were “treatable.”
Alright, let’s rewind a little. This little adventure started with an email I received that intriguingly began with: “In the past those like me were called witch, saint, gifted, mutant, freak and more . . . but I have an extraordinary ability at being able to find elements and microscopic life such as bacteria, viruses, worms, parasites and algae in the human body, the earth’s crust and so on.” The writer assured me that this was not a hoax and was looking to be tested in exchange for a document attesting to her ability. I was game and we discussed various ways that her abilities could be put to a test.
She told me that “when looking through a human, I see chlorine as yellow bubbles..radon as pale blue . . . accumulation, copper as white. These claims really weren’t testable, but we hit on something when she mentioned she could see germs in water and could distinguish between tap water, bottled water, and lake water. We settled on a challenge that involved randomly placing one of these waters into each of fifteen glasses. Her task was to identify the samples. She actually got eight correct, short of the ten that we had agreed would constitute a meaningful result. I asked if water that had no germs would be easier to identify and she thought that would be the case. So I set up four glasses that contained either tap or distilled water. She only got one of these right.
I thought we were now done with the experiment but was told that actually her main talent was diagnosing what was going on inside the body and she was quite willing to demonstrate this ability. And so we began. Her very first words were “this is for entertainment purposes only,” which was fine with me as I did think this would be quite entertaining. “There’s a lot of carbon in your system, especially in the liver and the blood.” Well, she got that right. All the proteins, fats, carbohydrates and nucleic acids that make up our tissues are organic compounds meaning their basic structure is built of carbon atoms.” I don’t think, however, that is what she had in mind.
Next I was told I have a lot of heavy metals in my lungs, like machinists who solder a lot. I think I soldered once in my life. I must have smoked in the past, she went on, because I have a lot of “old” carbon in my lungs. I have never smoked. She also diagnosed schistosomiasis, an infection with a parasite that causes my legs to be itchy. Schistosomiasis is an infection widely seen in Africa and Asia, never in North America. And my legs do not itch.
I have a purplish colour in my liver. I was told that what you eat dyes your body and I must have been eating beets. Nope. Can’t remember the last time I ate this vegetable. Then I was told that I often get pain in my rib area from coughing or from rotating movements but I should not worry because a chiropractor can easily fix that. I have no such pain, and should I encounter it, my choice of treatment would surely not be a chiro. After scanning me she did the same with two colleagues who were also filled with mites, insects, “phages,” “microplasm infections” and who knows what else. In one case she even claimed to see a tumour, specifically in the left testicle.
While performing these scans she also revealed that she had the ability of communicating with the dead and volunteered to do readings for the three of us. It was amazing! Basically, because she got nothing right! My grandparents made no mention of the fact they died in the gas chamber, and my father must have been vigorously exercising on the other side because I was told he was a large muscular man. Actually, he was shorter and smaller than me. I was also told that the reason I’m constantly searching for my keys is that the mischievous spirit of a girlfriend I left for my wife was hiding them. Nope and nope. No such girlfriend and I don’t lose my keys.
Up to this point I had been sitting straight-faced without making any comment because I’m quite familiar with “cold reading,” and the ability of “psychics” to capitalize on any reaction from their subject. But now I suggested we discuss the happenings and explained that she had been off-track on virtually everything. At this point, she became agitated and asked why we had invited her if we were just going to waste her time, forgetting that she had sought the invitation. In any case, the clairvoyant then got up and muttered something about the failure being due to my skepticism that blocked her abilities, apparently not having foreseen this possibility. We never did get around to treatments, which I suspect were of the herbal variety. Next time, she said, she would seek out a microbiologist with an open mind and prove herself.
Anyone with a scientific background would of course recognize the garbled rhetoric we heard as total nonsense, albeit somewhat entertaining. But it was also clear that this clairvoyant/naturopath has clients who accept her abilities as more than just fun. And that isn’t funny.
Dr. Schwarcz is director of McGill University’s Office for Chemistry and Society. In addition to teaching chemistry at McGill, he hosts a weekly “phone-in” show about chemistry on Montreal radio station CJAD, writes a weekly column called “The Right Chemistry” in the Montreal Gazette, and has a regular TV feature entitled “Joe’s Chemistry Set” on the Canadian Discovery Channel. The above list of 18 tips was adapted from a section of his book Radar, Hula Hoops and Playful Pigs, a collection of commentaries on the fascinating chemistry of everyday life.
This article was posted on June 27, 2013.