Dr. Devika K. Mehta summarizes research on the special characteristics of water that explain the dynamics of homeopathy. A clear and encompassing description.
- The aspect of homeopathy that the medicines are often diluted to the point where there may be no molecules of the original substance is implausible for many people.
- One of the leading current proposals for how such ‘ultra molecular’ dilutions work is that water is capable of storing information relating to substances with which it has previously been in contact.
- One possible way that homoeopathic dilutions work is to be found in the field of biophysics.
- Theoretical research has shown that the effect of homoeopathic remedies must come from the water that the solutions are made from, especially as there are no other molecules in the remedies except water molecules.
- All reactions, even bimolecular ones, require energy in order to occur, and that energy is contained within the reacting molecules.
- As a result, it is thought that homoeopathy works by the type of energy storage in the water molecules.
The basic principle of the water memory concept is that water can retain a memory of the substances that it has been previously exposed to and can therefore maintain the properties of those substances, even after the physical substance is removed.
- If homeopathy obeys Natural Law, as we learn in our studies of Homeopathy, then there is a method of proof waiting for discovery.
- Quantum physics seems to be the most likely field by which this discovery is waiting.
- It is common, acceptable theory that a substance behaves as does its chemical formula, where the three dimensional structure of a molecule plays an important role. e.g. Carbon.
- When carbon is crystallized due to low temperature and high pressure, it becomes a diamond but it is still chemically carbon. However, now the carbon atoms are tetrahedral bonded in structure. This change in form of bonding fundamentally changes its physical properties.
- On the opposite spectrum of carbon, we have graphite. Again, chemically still carbon but it is bonded in a hexagonal or rhombohedra structure.
- Water also has the ability to change its structure, and therefore its properties.
- The water molecule is made up of one atom of oxygen and two atoms of hydrogen.
- It is a covalent bond.
- Each molecule of water is joined together by a hydrogen bond.
- Hydrogen bonds are a distinctive type of bond in the field of chemistry.
- The hydrogen bonds in water are quite strong due to the 4 bonds that form on each molecule.
- Electromagnetic coupling of the hydrogen bonds occurs, called Cooper pairs.
- This pairing makes the hydrogen bonds stronger and up to 20 times stronger in water than other substances.
- The hydrogen bonds of the water molecules are constantly forming and breaking apart, lasting for only fractions of a second but moving in and out of structured formation, termed flickering clusters ((Delinick, 2006)
Properties of water:
- Generally, a solid state implies a greater density that causes it to contract in size.
- But water expands when it reaches a solid state.
- Water reaches a maximum density at 4o C but as it continues to cool, it begins to lose density.
- Due to hydrogen bonding the crystalline structure develops in freezing water and results in a lower density. This allows the ice to float in water.
Water also defies Newton’s law of cooling, as hot water actually freezes faster than cold water.
This phenomenon is known as the Mpemba effect ; the hot water cools from the surface, causing the cooler water to then sink- Convection is a factor. This creates a current in the water, furthering evaporation and surface cooling. Cold water remains steady in temperature due to the lack of convection / evaporation.
Water is known to have at least 64 anomalous properties, including anomalies in thermodynamics phase, material and physical.
- Water has the second highest specific heat capacity of any known chemical compound, as well as a high heat of vaporization, both of which are a result of the extensive hydrogen bonding between its molecules.
- Water is also known as the universal diluent, as it can dissolve almost anything.
- When a substance is dissolved, the solution is at equilibrium and molecularly every molecule of solute is separated by water molecules because of the obtuse angle at which the atoms within each molecule of water are joined. Thus, a wide variety of patterns and structures can form in linking the molecules together.
- The constant changing of bonds is the reason why no two snowflakes are alike.
- Water’s has a high degree of surface tension.
- The overall charge of the water molecule is neutral, it is a polar molecule.
- The oxygen atom has a slight negative charge, while the hydrogen has a slight positive charge. The effect of these charges results in what is known as a dipole moment. The interactions between the different dipoles of each molecule causes a net attraction force, which contributes to water’s high degreet of surface tension.
- Water has the ability to self organize.
Though water has no reproducible pattern at equilibrium, no organization, its random
disbursement of molecules has shown the ability to self organize. When a stress is put on the system (pressure, heat, matter, etc), it begins to arrange itself in specific patterns, often referred to as spatiotemporal patterns.
Every spatiotemporal pattern formed also develops aspecific electromagnetic frequency Variability in cell properties can be an important driving mechanism behind spatiotemporal patterns in biological systems, as the degree of cell-to-cell differences determines the capacity of cells to locally synchronize and, consequently, form patterns on a larger spatial scale.
It has been proven since the 1970’s (Roy et al 2004) that water can be in at least two phases. One phase is called a crystallattice which has a great deal of order. The crystal lattice phase is not always permanent. Most often it lasts only while under stress and once the stress is gone the water returns to a random equilibrium.
The other phase is a complete fluid whichhas random equilibrium. Many experiments have shown that the organization of water lasts much longer than researchers had theorized. For permanent self-organization to occur three criteria must be met (Delinick, 2006) :
1. The presence of one or more external stressors.
2. Breaking of symmetry.
3. The solution must be kept far from equilibrium.
How these criteria function:
The external stressor is important to the process of self organization. It provides the initial stress on the water, which moves it away from equilibrium. The introduction of an external stress pushes the water towards its critical threshold. It is moving from a simple state to a more complex one. When complex behavior is dominating the water, the molecules change from Brownian motion of random vibration to a more specific oscillation. You could say the molecules are now watching the behavior of their neighbor and correlations start to exist as the water tries to establish a new balance; the system has gone from simple to complex behavior.
This is called symmetry breaking. The water is trying to recover the state of equilibrium but is still under the influence of the external stressor. As this continues, the tendency to return to the previous state of equilibrium is lost and a new order develops. The longer the water is kept away from equilibrium, the greater the chance of it reaching its critical threshold. Critical threshold is a term used in physics, biology, economics and ecology.
Critical threshold is a succussionof phases, first building up pressure and then breaking through.
When a system is under the value of the critical threshold, a phenomenon tends to abort.
Above the threshold, it tends to grow exponentially. In a solution of water, critical threshold is determined by the amount of area within the dilution that is required to be oscillating with a similar spatiotemporal pattern in order for that particular pattern to become dominant.
When the critical threshold is reached, we have what is called a fossil object (Delinick, 2006). If no other stress is placed on the water, this fossil will remain intact. This fossil acts like a cage or a shell of water molecules, forming the specific spatiotemporal patterns. The shape can be chains, helixes, clusters or any complex three-dimensional shape. These shapes are the foundation of the crystal lattice and can be referred to as clathrate structures. They are more ordered than normal water. They easily interact with neighboring molecules allowing for greater proton conductivity and they may cause an entropy decrease as they dissipate at a remarkably slow rate. The benefit of increased proton conductivity is that protons can now be shared by water molecules that are not in direct contact with each other. This is thought to happen by a solution mechanism, induced by the nonlinear interactions of the water (Delinick, 2006). This sharing allows for greater stability of the hydrogen bonding as the once independent molecules are now dependant on each other, thus holding formation.
Although the initial external stressor on the water is most likely to be a material one, the changes within the structure can be maintained long after any physical remnant of the original substance is gone, due to the high level of stability of the spatiotemporal patterns.
This is less often the case if the external stressor is non-material, such as heat or pressure.
A simplified analogy of the memory of water theory was written by Lionel Milgrom, in the article “The Memory of Molecules” originally published by The Independent:
“It is like a CD which, by itself, cannot produce a sound but has the means to create it etched into its surface. In order for the sound to be heard, it needs to be played back through an electronic amplifier. And just as Pavarotti or Elton John is on the CD only as a “memory”, so water can memorise and amplify the signals of molecules that have been dissolved and diluted out of existence. The molecules do not have to be there, only their”imprint” on the solution in which they are dissolved. Agitation makes the memory.”
At this point in time, the water memory theory is still undergoing research and experimentation in order to prove the theory. If the theory is accepted, it is possible that water, in the crystal lattice phase, could be classified as a super fluid or quantum fluid. (Delinick, 2006).
In a quantum fluid, all the molecules act collectively, doing the same thing at the same time. This coherence of the molecules is called entanglement, as two particles which are not in local contact with one another remain unified in function and information.
Quantum fluids form under high pressure and low temperature due to the compression of their electrons. In the quantum fluid state, electrical current can theoretically flow forever with a complete absence of voltage, meaning that its electric potential does not change.
It has zero viscosity, zero entropy, and infinite thermal conductivity. Quantum fluids also remain liquid at absolute zero temperature and zero pressure.
Homeopathic remedies will have to undergo extensive experimentation before being scientifically proven to fall in the category of quantum fluid, but with the memory of water theory, we can at least begin to establish plausibility. The succussions allow for pressure increase, and proton conductivity allows for entanglement.
Even Hahnemann, in his great insight and quizzical mind, wrote about the possibilities of the unseen world of molecules in his article : Remarks on the Extreme Attenuation of Homeopathic Remedies (Dudgeon, 2004, p. 765):
“Who can say that in the millionth or billionth development the small particles of the medicinal substances have arrived at the state of atoms not susceptible of further division, of whose nature we can form not the slightest conception?…..”
Water has shown the ability to self organize, but for permanent self-organization to occur three criteria must be met:
1. The presence of one or more external constraints (stressors)
2. Breaking of symmetry
3. The solution must be kept far from equilibrium
For the first criteria of the external stressors, we can consider the crude substance of what is to be potentized. When an external stressor is put into the water, it automatically moves away from equilibrium. This gives two of the three criterions. If the water was left alone, the system would re-equilibrate and every molecule of solute would be separated by water molecules. Stresses such as changes in temperature and pressure easily re-equilibrate as compared to the introduction of a solute. This is because when the solute is first introduced, it forms microscopic groups or clusters, hence slowing equilibrium.
Succussion provides another form of external stressor. Even though the solution may be well mixed, it has not re-established equilibrium due to the pressure change within the preparation vial. The process of succussion also causes nanobubble formation. This is microscopic pockets of gas formed within the water. Nano bubbles have a high bioactivity. Nanobubbles favor self organization processes due to their charge, long range attraction and slow diffusion. The reason for the slow diffusion is that nanobubbles have a charged interface which opposes the surface tension of the water. The solution is kept far from equilibrium by the circulation of nanobubbles, while the organization is enhanced. As energy is introduced via succussion, the hydrogen bonding is disturbed.
The molecules that are closest to the sides of the vial are the most susceptible to the oscillating changes. There are great opposing forces here, therefore greater turbulence.
This portion of the water is referred to as vicinal water. Even though this area of the potentizing vial is under the greatest stress, it also has the greatest capacity of developing spatiotemporal patterns. The further the equilibrium is kept away from the water, the greater the possibility of spatiotemporal patterning to stabilize.
- The crude substance acts as the external stressor,
- The process of succession acts as the symmetry breaking for the water,
- The serial dilution allows for the solution to be pushed further away from equilibrium.
Thus, potentization has achieved all three criteria for self-organization.
Considering the application of the memory of water to homeopathic remedies we must also consider what makes up the remedy. In liquid preparations, we have water, alcohol and the crude material of the remedy.
In triturating, we have lactose and the crude material of the remedy as well as the introduction of aqueous alcohol. In the trituration process, the energy affected on the mixture increases the electromagnetic properties of the material, which increases the capacity for spatiotemporal patterning to develop before the mixture is even introduced to the aqueous alcohol solution.
Alcohol was originally used as a preservative for the crude substance in the mother tincture. Alcohol also acts as a surfactant, lowering the surface tension of the water.
The lowering of surface tension affects the polarity of the water molecule, which in turn affects hydrogen bonding. The water molecules break apart in their hydrogen bonds as ethanol competes to form its own hydrogen bonds with the other water molecules. This increases the capacity to form new spatiotemporal patterning as the hydrogen bonding activity is enhanced. The addition of alcohol is an interesting feature of the homeopathic preparation, as there are many homeopaths who would agree that remedies made strictly of water are less effective than those prepared as Hahnemann detailed.
The homeopathic compound as a solute is the next greatest concentration in the solution and it essentially overwrites its own spatiotemporal pattern of organization. The diluents provide the structure required for patterning to develop while the solute provides the information to form the specific structuring.
As the remedy is prepared, it goes through dynamic disruption and disorganization by succussion/ trituration. Because the remedy is the next most prevailing substance in the mixture, it is this material that develops the dominant spatiotemporal patterning.
The ratio of the diluents to solute is important as the solute must remain the next most dominant substance in the solution. So long as the water is distilled, even a large dilution ratio can be used. However it would take a great amount of succussion to develop any extensive spatiotemporal patterning.
As before said; when the external stressor is non-material such as heat, pressure, or in this case the act of succussion, it is much easier to re-establish equilibrium.
Therefore, the initial amount of solute plus the continued dilution and additional succussion is important in order to keep the solution away from equilibrium.
When homeopaths have extremely sensitive patients, they can dilute a dose through multiple glasses of water. The spatiotemporal patterning is maintained as the stock bottle is first succussed and any subsequent glass is thoroughly stirred. This provides the conditions required to keep the solution far away from equilibrium, therefore promoting the formation of spatiotemporal patterning.
The higher potencies have a less fogged image of the pattern. The spatiotemporal pattern becomes sharper and crisper and potentially clearer in its biological action as potentization continues. Each serial dilution reaches a maximum amount of spatiotemporal patterning; this is the critical threshold. This amount changes depending on the scale of dilution used.
Because the dilution factor is so much larger in the LM scale than the C scale, more succussions can be tolerated at each serial dilution before maximum spatiotemporal patterning is reached.
In the centesimal scale, the amount of potentization at each step seems to reach a maximum after striking 5 times. After this point, fresh diluents must be added by means of serial dilution in order to elicit any greater potentization, as a new critical threshold level must be reached.
Because the LM scale is 1/50,000, the tolerance for succession is about 100. This is due to the greater dilution factor which allows for 500 times the tolerance of succussion. At a greater dilution ratio, each stage has a greater capacity to clear or develop a sharper image, because greater amounts of kinetic or electromagnetic energy can be tolerated before new diluent is required. This would explain why LM’s can have such a deep acting effect on people while still remaining gentle in action.
Since there is no traceable physical material in any remedy higher than a 12C potency (with some variance depending on the molecular weight of the substance), there is no evidence supporting a biochemical method of response within the body. Homeopathic remedies are unlikely to go through the mechanisms of absorption through the digestive tract, transport by the blood or metabolism by the liver.
According to homeopathic theory, the root of all disease is a derangement of the vital force. Every person has a unique pattern to their vital force and every cell within their body is animated with that energy. The remedy, with its distinct spatiotemporal patterning and resultant electromagnetic frequency, somehow affects that energy, thus creating an environment for change and rehabilitation from within.
One theory about how the body interprets the remedy’s information is by the electromagnetic frequency it emits. The sublingual glands are the first site of absorption and it is here that the electromagnetic frequency of the remedy begins to affect the cells around it. Every cell has microtubule structures within it. They are protein filaments that make up the cytoskeleton of the cell. This matrix of hollow, fibrous tubules not only provides structure to the cell, but they have high water content, are polar structures and are connected from the nucleus to the cellular membrane within the cell. Microtubules are involved in many cellular processes such as: vesicular transportation, mitosis, cytokinesis and the regulation of neural synapses. Due to their high water content, polarity and tubular structure which allows for vicinal water, microtubular water is also able to undergo the same self-organization process as a homeopathic potency (Delinick, 2006).
When a homeopathic preparation comes in contact with these tubules, the information from the remedy can potentially be delivered directly to the nucleus of the cell. The water within the cells begins to oscillate according to the spatiotemporal patterning of the remedy, adopting the remedy’s electromagnetic frequency. This transfer of energy might be the initial shift in action that the body takes in order to begin the process of self-healing. As this new cellular information is taken up by the endocrine system through the glands, the information is quickly transmitted and propagated throughout the body.
Due to the dynamicity of the human body with the movement of cells and constant homeostatic tuning, there is provision of just the right environment for the spatiotemporal patterning to be maintained. There is an external stressor, symmetry breaking and the system never reaches equilibrium. Much like sound frequency, this has an audible range of hearing. Homeopathic remedies have a range of engagement in the body and it is only within this range that there can be a response.
Stimuli above or below this range will not elicit a response and frequencies near either end of this range can be extremely aggravating upon exposure. It is important to note that the frequency, spatiotemporal pattern and the intensity (or volume) of the remedy all make an impact on the body. Contrary to popular belief, a higher potency remedy does not necessarily mean that it is more intense or deeper in action than a lower dilution.
Intensity is a more accurate description of the volume of remedy consumed. Unlike pharmaceuticals, taking a greater volume of homeopathic remedy does not compound the action. However, it does affect the intensity of the action, as a much greater number of cells will be exposed to the remedy.
Much like the aggravation caused by too high of a potency, too high of intensity can trigger a negative response. This is due to the critical threshold of the system. The critical threshold need only just be reached to bring forth the response of self-organization. If it is far surpassed in one dose, instead of inducing organization, chaos ensues. Much like a cancer, the growth and changes are too rapid and random, thus creating dysfunction.
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