Why I Use Radionics

Why I Use Radionics

By Hugh Lovel


In one breath, I am a biodynamic grower who uses radionics precisely because it works with life instead of death. 

Many erroneous ideas about radionics are bandied about, almost like confetti at a celebration, and clarity is long overdue. One of these ideas, common amongst detractors who condemn radionics without investigation, is that radionics works with electricity. This is like saying that music works with electricity because you can listen to it using an electrical device. Saying that radionics works with electricity is misleading and hysterical, and it is time to set the record straight.


What Is Radionics?


The term radionics comes from the realization that everything, without exception, gives off its own characteristic radiating pattern or wave form, and a radionic instrument can be anything which channels such patterns. My favourite radionic instrument is a piece of paper with an iris pattern printed on it, and the most popular radionic devices in use today are the Sri Sanjeevini cards that are simple sets of sector marks within a circular, nine lobed lotus pattern. Sanjeevini cards usually are printed on paper and are used daily by hundreds of thousands of people in India and throughout the world. Anyone who is interested can find these cards at: 






      Projection Wheel                                           


I was introduced to radionics by T. Galen Hieronymus and his wife, Sarah, who lived within 65 miles of me in Georgia. Galen was one of the early radionic pioneers and held the only U.S. Patent ever issued for radionic gear. http://quantumagriculture.com/authors/galen-hieronymous

Galen’s patent examiner insisted that he name the mysterious energy that made his invention work. Although Galen had proven neither electricity nor optics were involved, he saw that the organisational energy he was working with had much in common with both electricity and optics. So, in the patent examiner’s office he threw caution to the winds, called it ‘eloptic’ energy and won his patent. “Biggest misnomer there ever was.” is what told me.


Life and Death


When thinking about life I distinguish between lively health and vitality and barely scraping along on the threshold of oblivion. What I mean is the difference between syntropy and entropy. Entropy is a process of dispersal, dissolution and death; a process where energy becomes increasingly unavailable. Syntropy is a process of building order, complexity and organisation; a process of increasingly building stores of available energy. Life is syntropic as it defies entropy, and the more strongly it does this the more alive it is. Death runs down while life runs up. 

Many in our culture believe that only entropy exists—yet, strangely enough, many of these same people believe in evolution. If there was only entropy an embryo would never become a child or a mature adult. Clouds would not gather moisture into themselves and concentrate it strongly enough to give us rain. Forests would never grow, and what we know as fertile soil would never have developed. In the words of Nobel Prize winning physicist Erwin Schrödinger (1887—1961) “Living organisms have the remarkable ability to concentrate a stream of order on themselves.” 

One of our problems in recognizing the nature of life is its dynamic quality. Life is a process rather than the mass and volume of substance involved. It seems life must be measured by qualitative means, rather than weight or volume. Would any farmer deny that some soils and some farms are more alive than others even though they may be of similar size and other physical measures? Likewise some foods are far richer in vitality, flavour, balance and wholesomeness than others, even though they may measure the same in minerals, carbohydrates or proteins—just look at sugar and honey, raw milk and boiled milk or fresh fruits and processed foods.


Patterns and Boundaries


As paper radionic devices illustrate, radionics is about patterns. Patterns define boundaries and this gives rise to order. Order provides organization, which is what makes living organisms alive. Think of organization as a process that arises at boundaries and is the basis of life. Where death energy disperses, such as we see with electricity—life energy builds from lower to higher concentration. Then when a point is reached in the process where an organism dies and its boundaries and syntropic processes fail, it becomes entropic and disintegrates.

The power of boundaries is so phenomenal it tends to escape our notice, as we need to grasp the idea before we can see the phenomenon. Mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot hardly had any idea what would develop when he started defining boundaries with the simple formula Z = Z2 + C. What he discovered was an astonishing profusion of organic forms that revealed layer after layer of complexity and gave rise to a branch of mathematics known today as fractals. The Mandelbrot Set—which arises from the equation above—is a classic case of beautiful, organic mathematics. Below is a link to download a Mandelbrot Set generator that can be entertaining to play with. http://wareseeker.com/free-mandelbrot-set-generator/






Overview of the Mandelbrot Set (Z = Z2 + C) prior to magnification.


The Edge Effect


Permaculturists often describe the boundary phenomenon as the edge effect, and the idea is to strive, insofar as possible, to maximize this edge effect in landscape design. This enriches the pattern density of an area and enlivens it. A palpable increase in the vitality of a landscape is observable as the edge effect is increased, even though we must remember that vitality is measured qualitatively rather than quantitatively. 

The human organism is a huge collection of boundaries and patterns from the outer boundaries of skin, hair and nails to the double helix spirals of our DNA to the resonant wave patterns of our sub-atomic particles. 

It took me a long time, heaps of observations of nature and several readings of Steiner’s Agriculture Course to understand life processes and how they arise out of chaos into organization, and I wouldn’t blame anyone who struggles with this idea. In our culture today we’ve been taught that life is some kind of absolute that cannot be evaluated—something is either alive or it isn’t. From this point of view a person on life support is considered fully alive—until he isn’t. Of course, we CAN tell when the life essence has fully departed as the corpse left behind disintegrates. But how can we ignore the difference between a tree in its prime and growing well and a tree that is hollow, rotten and riddled with termites? How can we pretend that each embody the same degree of aliveness?




It might give rise to ill-feeling to compare the vitality of our farm with our neighbours’. In the first place we’d do better comparing our paddocks to the roadside, since the roadside is more likely to be doing whatever the natural potential of the land is, if left unfarmed. The paddocks we work with may be flogged almost to oblivion and just barely scraping by with a fraction of the diversity of the roadsides. Showing how our own paddocks are less flogged than someone else’s is hardly an answer to raising the game of the neighbourhood to nature’s level and beyond. And we should be thinking about achieving the beyond part, because the more alive something is the more strongly it draws a stream of organization out of the cosmos. All too often our fence rows and roadsides are drawing life from the cosmos and supporting our paddocks. If we only farmed restoratively our paddocks would be drawing life out of the cosmos and feeding the roadsides.   

When we compare applications of the BD preparations by stirring and spraying with radionic patterning we tend to miss the point. The two are different approaches although they achieve similar results insofar as both can build life into the environment. I have to say, I love the easy application of patterns via radionics. This is a Godsend. I would never have gained a hundredth as much experience with what the biodynamic preparations can do without radionic treatments being so cheap and easy. To the consternation of critics, radionics encourages frequent and precise use of the biodynamic preparations, and growers stand to learn a lot. Unless the BD preps are used they do nothing and nothing is learned. 

On the other hand, stirring and spraying BD preps tends to provide people— myself included—with a more empathic and meditative modality that invites everyone to pour their souls into what they spray on their paddocks. I’m sure this is important because nature responds to feelings rather than reason. When we stir and spray with deep, heartfelt gratitude, nature responds wonderfully. I am so sure of this that I recommend radionic patterning with deep gratitude as well—but this isn’t quite the same as pouring your heart into the rhythm and tonality of stirring clockwise and anticlockwise for an hour and then spraying. Comparing the meditative stirring method, which takes more time and resources, with radionics, which is a great teaching tool, is like comparing peanuts with watermelons. I like both. Why would I only have one when I could have both? I intend to keep on stirring and spraying even if only to treat my seed potatoes or to spray around my field broadcaster.



      Biodynamic Pattern Cards from Australian Herbs


 The type of radionic card shown above was originally introduced by Malcolm Rae (1913 –1979), an early radionic pioneer. The design is more than symbolic as the rings provide boundaries, which give rise to organization and life. The “sector marks” within the circles provide resistance which concentrates life energy according to each pattern. Since life energy flows into wherever it is concentrated, it flows through the marks on the cards. These Malcolm Rae type cards are excellent for use with the paper projection wheel.

 Of course, more sophisticated radionic instruments offer some advantages over paper radionics. I prefer the card type instrument, which was also pioneered by Malcolm Rae. Below is a picture of the Japanese made ‘Iyachiko’ instrument (still no electricity) which features energy accumulators with both card readers and plates. The plates come in handy for materials if there are no corresponding cards, and the 0 to 999 potentiometers provide a complete range of homeopathic potencies. The sacred geometric proportions feel natural and organic, and the instrument has storage inside its lid for pattern cards and other bits as well as protecting against dust or damage. A lead from the instrument can transfer the patterns into spray tanks, irrigation systems and liquid inputs such as compost teas or activated EM brews, while the well can be used for maps or other specimen targets. Most importantly— since the essence of control is to use the exact amount of force necessary and no more or no less—the Iyachiko includes a timer and can automatically shut itself off instead of requiring the operator to shut off the instrument when pattern transfer is accomplished. 

335Hugh Lovel design Radionic Instrument




There was a time when I could hardly imagine how a radionic instrument could work with life energy. I simply had no concept. Over the years experience has convinced me, and as a chef and chemist I’ve found flavour and aroma are the best indicators of vital, nutritious produce. It’s that old complexity thing again.

I realize some want laboratory evidence, and there is a test, called paper disc chromatography, that Rudolf Steiner proposed for showing how much life and vitality a specimen contains. Harvey Lisle, who passed away this last year, introduced me to paper disc chromatography, and I have my own laboratory for making these chromos showing the entire chemistry of a soil or food specimen between the opposite poles of lime and silica. I have found that using radionics to apply biodynamic preparation patterns produces some of the finest chromatograms I have seen, and I intend in future articles to show a variety of these pictures so readers can form their own opinions.

In the final analysis, why do I like radionics? It is easy, accurate, effective, swift and sure. Using a map I can pattern my whole property with whichever biodynamic preparation or preparations I need at the moment, and I can put the preparation patterns for current conditions into foliar or fertigation applications. For example, radionics allows me to compensate for too much rain by applying the Oak Bark preparation (BD 505) in tandem with the Horsetail preparation (BD 508) whenever things go from excessively dry to excessively wet all of a sudden. And I really like it that I don’t have to set foot in soggy paddocks and I can apply the patterns I want at any time of the day or night. I can also use radionics to moderate such problems as weeds, or animal infestations, and it seems extremely useful in plant breeding as well. Dealing with animal ailments is simplicity itself, and I can use virtually any homeopathic in the repertory. Even better, when I can’t afford to apply physical amendments with something expensive like molybdenum or kelp I can reduce the physical application to one part in a thousandth and use radionics to get good response. 

Actually I only know a fraction of the things I can do with radionics, and because it is so easy to use I find myself applying my biodynamic preparations in far more instances than were ever possible stirring the raw preps. In the process I have learned to intimately appreciate what each one does and when best to apply it.


Peter Escher

Back when I started farming, my first biodynamic mentor was Peter Escher,

Ehrenfried Pfeiffer’s partner in setting up his laboratories at Threefold Farm in Spring Valley, New York. Pfeiffer was Rudolf Steiner’s right-hand man in his agricultural work, and was devoted to carrying out Steiner’s wish that we apply the benefits of our biodynamic preparations to the widest possible areas of the entire earth. Clearly Peter had also devoted his life to this task, and I was deeply touched by his hope that somehow something of Steiner’s gift to humanity would succeed in bearing fruit for the greater good. 

By the time I met him in 1977, Peter was a very old man with an immense sense of urgency about him. As I got to know him, this urgency came across to me as a palpable sense of relief that from time to time I got his teachings in one or two goes. Sometimes I think I am incredibly stupid—but on the occasions when I worked with Peter there was a mystique about the old man that inspired me. I was really keen to grasp what he told me with all my heart, knowing that Peter himself was a gift and an answer to my solemnest prayers.


Life Runs Up/Death Runs Down


Rudolf Steiner gave the insights of his Agriculture Course and his indications for making remedies to re-enliven the earth out of an understanding of syntropy and how it makes things increasingly more and more alive. This task of re-enlivening the earth is what biodynamic preparations are meant to do. The more they are used, the more they make our land and our crops thrive. Steiner hoped to reverse the situation where selfish, deluded, insecure people are wringing the life out of the world. His agriculture course was his final, desperate effort to introduce a new impulse toward syntropy. Otherwise he foresaw that soon the earth would no longer be able to support life.. 

Both Pfeiffer and Escher saw that our most important task was to apply the benefits of the biodynamic preparations to the widest possible areas of the entire earth for its healing. The philosophy will catch up later after we reverse the trend toward selfishness and death. The urgency of this mission implies we must apply the preps as quickly as possible in whatever form we can—and Steiner encouraged innovation. Steiner believed that improved nutrition was the fundamental factor that would overcome the main inner hindrances of personal ambition, illusions and petty jealousies.

In one of our discussions, Peter Escher pointed out to me that it was the demons who first recognised Christ for what and who he was. He noted that those opposed to human progress are always at the forefront of stifling and stymieing any impulses to the good. He pointed out that the biodynamic movement was never immune to this. 

When Pfeiffer got his laboratories working he manufactured and distributed two biodynamic preparation products—Dr. Pfeiffer’s Quick Composting Compound and Dr. Pfeiffer’s Field Spray. This was met with furious condemnation by those who held that no one could or should use Steiner’s agricultural remedies who was not devoted to Anthroposophy with a capital “A”. Had Pfeiffer bowed to this pressure, Steiner’s task of applying the preparations to the widest possible areas would have been stymied.

Not at all strangely, though Peter and I talked about many things that can only be described as spiritual, we never had any conversations about Anthroposophy. However, with my love of language I looked this term up in my Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary. I don’t know who writes diectionaries, but there is deep wisdom in the definitions of words. Webster’s gave two definitions of anthroposophy: 1. The study of human wisdom; and 2. A cult based on the teachings of Rudolf Steiner. While I don’t know when I was not engaged in anthroposophy of the first sort, the second definition would not have applied to Rudolf Steiner himself. 


Boiling It Down


I reckon what it comes down to is the world has always had two kinds of people on board. One set believes in taking whatever they can for themselves at the expense of others and the world, thus aggrandizing and enriching themselves while forcing others into insignificance and poverty. Their ideal of perfection is to force everyone besides themselves to conform to the lowest common denominators and pitting everyone against each other whilst they make off with the loot. Of course, they think they are special exceptions. This world view results in the earth running down to exhaustion and death. 

The other set of people believe in freely enriching the world around them and encouraging others to develop their gifts, whatever they may be. Thus their ideal of perfection is to promote diversity and cooperation, which by its dynamic nature enhances the world and humanity while creating abundance. Quite naturally this sort believes everyone is special. This world view would result in the world running up to greater and greater enhancement. 

It is no wonder that the first group has an easy time of exploiting the other. The first group automatically takes, the second gives. It is a match made in heaven— except domination by the takers over the givers results in a world of serial rape, pillage and oppression that runs down until it dies. Considering that our culture is dominated by the taker mentality, it is little wonder that the belief in entropy is so entrenched while it’s opposite, syntropy, is ridiculed. 


Can Do/Can’t Do


Many are those who prefer to enforce what cannot be done rather than nurturing what can be done. In the glossary of A Biodynamic Farm (ACRES, USA, 1994) I define good, evil and freedom in the hope of bringing clarity to some of these issues. Good is an adjective used to describe something or someone who brings about an increase in freedom and ability. On the other hand, Evil is a cause of limitation or harm. Freedom is the choice to, or not to, or the choice not to choose. Freedom cannot be either/or; it must be both/and; and it also includes the ability to choose not to make a choice. As long as one must either have freedom from or freedom to, one is under compulsion. One is even under compulsion if one is forced to make a choice. 

I don’t know of anyone using radionics as a biodynamic method who insists that radionic patterning is the only way or that biodynamics can be used. However, there are many like those who condemned Ehrenfried Pfeiffer and Peter Escher, that seemingly wish to limit biodynamics to an elite few who adhere to the methodology of stirring and spraying—even if this is only horn manure and horn silica once a year— while pretending they are truly doing what Rudolf Steiner recommended. If they could, they would hold biodynamics back to these limits as government and commercial policy—which shows which side of the divide they are on.  ≈    




Ehrenfried Pfeiffer