Spin Doctors: A New Paradigm Theorizing the
Mechanism of Bioenergy Healing

by M. Sue Benford, R.N., M.A.


Abridged version



Source :http://www.journaloftheoretics.com/Articles/1-2/benford.html

Abstract: This article outlines various studies which have shown a change in the measured gamma radiation near bioenergy healers. Contained herein is a theoretical explanation for these findings based upon an expansion of current concepts in physics and biology.

Keywords: gamma radiaton, radiation detection, bioenergy, quantum vacuum, atomic spin, phyton, SQUID, electromagnetic field.

I. Introduction

Certain alternative healing therapies are theorized as being bioenergetic modalities which utilize the "élan vital" or vital energy. Proponents of these techniques have claimed this previously unrecognized force infuses organisms with life sustaining energies and/or balances existing energies resulting in improved health. This long-standing and widespread belief in the existence of an etheric healing force, called "prana" by the Hindus, "chi" by the Chinese, and "ki" by the Japanese, is the source most often associated with the "soul, spirit, and mind." In fact, there are references made to human energy fields or the aura of the body in 97 different cultures, according to John White in his book "Future Science."1

Equally mystifying and unexplainable are the plethora of parapsychological phenomena often referred to as extrasensory perception, precognition, remote viewing, etc. that have evaded scientific description. Modern scientists have repeatedly sought evidence for the substance of spirit. After Newton published his laws of mechanics, optics, and gravity, he spent many years looking for the living force via the use of alchemy. In the late nineteenth century, prominent physicists, William Crookes and Oliver Lodge, searched for what they called the "psychic force." Their premise was that a connection existed between the spiritual, aetheric forces and the recently discovered electromagnetic waves. By 1905, electromagnetic signals were recognized as being carried by light packets, or photons, but were not scientifically connected to healing energies.2

Numerous other scientists have also searched for and attempted to name this elusive aether. An abbreviated list would include "pseudo magnetism"; "fifth force"; "empty waves"; a significant part of Tesla phenomenology; "radiation energy" by H. Moray; "tachyon fields" by Fienberg; "free energy" by Kelly; Nieper’s "gravitation field energy"; "space energy" by Schaffranke and Harris; "unified field" by Mahareshi-Jagelin; "emptiness energy" by Reichenbach; "vital magnetism" by Messmer; "bio-cosmic energy" by Hieronymus; "Mumia" by Paracelsus; "X-force" by Eemen; "N-radiation" by Biondio; "ponderomatoric forces" by Myshin; "radiation energy" by Abrams; "O-radiation or Orgonne" by Reich; "M-field" (morphogenic field) by Schaldrein and B. Haeim. A common physical reality behind the diverse phenomenology was postulated by many researchers, in particular, in a more complete form be D.A. Kelly in 1986 and Antwort Schema in 1989.3

Throughout the 20th Century, proponents of "élan vital" and bioenergy medicine have been unable to provide definitive evidence of an electromagnetic connection between alternative healing therapies and living organisms let alone offer a scientifically-testable theory of its existence. This has left the field open to staunch criticism from medical professionals and scientists who overtly dismiss any possible healing effects from an "imaginery" aether. However, recent research may document the existence of healing energy and, further, describe a new paradigm for bioenergy healing which includes a plausible mechanism of action.

II. Bioenergy Healers and Gamma Radiation

Recently replicated studies by Benford et al. identified statistically significant decreases in extremely high-frequency electromagnetic fields, termed gamma rays, during alternative healing sessions with a trained practitioner and multiple subjects.

Early results demonstrated that gamma radiation levels markedly decreased during therapy sessions of 100% of subjects and at every body site tested regardless of which therapist performed the treatment. In many instances, the gamma counts fluctuated by thousands which represented a 3 – 6% difference in gross gamma count between the untrained control practitioners and trained healing energy practitioners within the short time periods analyzed.

Later tests, whereby the therapists and controls were moved three feet away from the detector and seated at the subject’s head, demonstrated that significant drops occurred in female subjects interacting with trained therapists but not in males. In fact, two males demonstrated "emissions" of gamma rays during the therapy sessions. This may be due, in part, to variations in lean body mass which contains the body’s primary gamma emitter, Potassium-40 (K40). This has also been hypothesized to represent a "self-regulation" of energy within the body and the surrounding electromagnetic field.4,5

The consistent results from these controlled experiments may result, in part, from the increased electromagnetic fields surrounding the hands of healers. Dr. John Zimmerman discovered large frequency-pulsing biomagnetic fields emanating from hands of therapeutic touch practitioners during therapy as measured by an extremely sensitive magnetometer called a SQUID (Superconducting Quantum Interference Device).6 Similar frequency-pulsing biomagnetic fields were later measured and quantified from the hands of meditators and practitioners of yoga and QiGong using a simple magnetometer. These fields were 1000 times greater than the strongest human biomagnetic field7 and were found to be in the same frequency range as those being tested in medical research laboratories for use in speeding the healing process of certain biological tissues.3,8 This range is low energy and extremely low frequency and spans from 2 Hz to 50 Hz.8 However, still missing from this research is a mechanism of action that can explain the connection between electromagnetic field increases and observed healing benefits reported in the current therapy literature.

III. Adding "spin" to the healing equation.

Recently released Russian research posits an approach for describing many, if not all, the biopositive and parapsychological phenomena related to bioenergy healing and conscious intention. This research has postulated and tested the existence of "torsion fields." Russian scientist Akimov and his team consider the quantum vacuum as a universal torsion wave carrying medium. The torsion field is said to fill all of space isotropically, including its matter component. It has a quantal structure that is unobservable in non-disturbed states. However, violations of vacuum symmetry and invariance create different, and in principle observable, states. These theorized "violations" and "invariances" may be what the energy practitioners are creating, which induces changes in the gamma radiation previously described.

The torsion field theory takes a modified form of the original electron-positron model of the Dirac sea: the vacuum's energy field is viewed as a system of rotating wave packets of electrons and positrons (rather than a sea of electron-positron pairs). Where the wave packets are mutually embedded, the field is electrically neutral. If the spins of the embedded packets have the opposite sign, the system is compensated not only in charge, but also in classical spin and magnetic moment.

In keeping with this theory, Akimov et al.3 view the Vacuum as a physical medium that can assume various polarization states. Given charge polarization, the Vacuum is manifested as the electromagnetic field. Given matter polarization, it is manifested as the gravitational field. And given spin polarization, the Vacuum manifests as a spin field. All fundamental fields known to physics correspond to specific Vacuum polarization states.

IV. Characteristics of the torsion field

G.I. Shipov showed that besides the two known long-range physical fields, electromagnetic and gravitational, there exists a third long-range field: the torsion field. The torsion field is an extremely unusual entity. First of all, the theoretical upper limit for the speed of torsion waves is estimated to be not less than 10^9 c, where c is the speed of light in a Vacuum. Second, torsion fields may be able to propagate in a region of space which is not limited by the light cone. That means that torsion fields are able to propagate not only in the future but in the past as well. Third, torsion fields may transmit information without transmitting energy. Fourth, torsion fields are not required to follow the superposition principle.10

Torsion fields are generated by spin (considering classical spin) or by angular momentum. There exist both right and left torsion fields (depending on the spin orientation). As the location of the atoms within a molecule and their spin orientation is due to their underlying physical characteristics, the superposition of torsion fields generated by the atomic and nuclear spins of each molecule determines the intensity of torsion field in the space surrounding the molecule as a whole. While an amorphous or nonaligned substance would therefore not have such an aggregate effect, a substance with aligned molecules (i.e. crystal) would have an aggregate effect in terms of its torsion field. The superposition of all these torsion fields determines the intensity and spatial configuration of the characteristic torsion field of that substance. Thus, each substance possesses its own characteristic torsion field.

The property which is open to influence by torsion fields is spin. The structure of the torsion field of every object can be changed by the influence of an external torsion field. As a result of such an influence, the new configuration of the torsion field will be fixed as a metastable state (as a polarized state) and will remain intact even after the source of the external torsion field is moved to another area of space. Thus torsion fields of certain spatial configuration can be "recorded" on any physical or biological object.

The following fundamentally important fact should be emphasized. In the framework of the theory of electro-torsion interactions, it is shown that if electrostatic or electromagnetic fields exist in some region of space, then there always exists torsion fields in that region of space. Electrostatic or electromagnetic fields without a torsion component do not exist. On the strict level this is shown by G.I. Shipov.11 Strong torsion fields are generated by high electrical potentials and by devices with organized circular or spiral electromagnetic processes.

V. Torsion fields, radiation hormesis, and bioenergy therapy

The theory linking biopositive physiological effects of bioenergy therapies with radiation hormesis has been well described.4,5 Radiation hormesis is the concept of using small doses of ionizing radiation in a manner which has a beneficial affect on the body. In summary, whole body exposures of mammals to low-dose irradiation (doses <10 cGy/y; <10 rad/y) has been found to stimulate major physiologic parameters including reproduction, growth, muscular development, mental acuity, cell repair systems (DNA, RNA, membranes and shock proteins), and immune competence.12,13,14

Similar biopositive effects have been noted following bioenergy healing therapies including reduced anxiety in hospitalized cardiovascular patients,15 chemotherapy oncology patients,16 and premature neonates.17 Other research has shown bioenergy therapies reduce tension headache pain17 and dramatically increase the rate of healing of dermal punch wounds.18 One pilot study demonstrated a decrease in the concentration of suppressor T-cells implying an increased immune response.19 A separate study showed significant changes in hemoglobin and hematocrit values after treatment.20

Work by renowned Chinese scientist Dr. Shu-Zheng Liu of the MH Radiobiology Research Unit of Norman Bethune University demonstrates that in both human populations and animal studies low-dose radiation (LDR) stimulates the immunological responses.21 The up-regulation of immunity following LDR involves a series of cellular and molecular reactions as well as their systemic regulation. The results obtained by Lui and many others have compelled researchers to conclude that whole-body irradiation (WBI) with X- and gamma-rays in the dose range within 0.2 Gy has definite positive effect on the immune system which can be considered as beneficial to the organism.22

Similar types of improved immune responses have been reported by the Russian scientists with the use of generated torsion fields. "In a laboratory of radiobiology of Perm University we have investigated the effect of static torsion field on mice. . . The experiments have shown that torsion field has immune-stimulating effect showing itself in the activation of both cellular and humoral parts of the immune system.

VI. Interacting with the Vacuum

It is therefore postulated here that bioenergy healers are creating permutations in the Vacuum or zero-point field (ZPF) via torsion fields, which, in turn, change the characteristics of the source mass m (see Figure 1). For this discussion, the Vacuum/ZPF is being defined as "the locus of a vast energy field that is neither classically electromagnetic nor gravitational, nor yet nuclear in nature. Instead, it is the originating source of the known electromagnetic, gravitational, and nuclear forces and fields. It is the originating source of matter itself."

Figure 1

conscious intention

(causing heightened electromagnetic \|/ fields in the surrounding the hands)

alteration of the torsion field


distortion of Vacuum/ZPF

(radiation hormesis)


restoration of substance equilibrium

This spin compensation, posited to be induced by heightened electromagnetic fields surrounding the hands of bioenergy healers (charge q), alters the torsion field and creates new annihilation/energy opportunities for the source.

Furthermore, preliminary data collected to test this theory demonstrate a "Rubberband Effect" resulting from the healer’s intervention with matter-based substances and their fields. To explain the effect, one can use the example of an unstretched rubberband of a certain length (say 2"):


When force q is exerted on point B such that the rubberband (mass m) is stretched it will assume a new length of 3":


This, however, puts the system out of equilibrium such that when the force, or energy, dissipates, the rubberband does not immediately go back to a stable position 2" but, first, overcompensates by going to 1":


In a recent gravity-shielding experiment involving lentil beans, the rest mass (pre-therapy) was 37.545 gms. When the bioenergy healers energized it in a direction such that it reached a peak by decreasing in mass by about 0.1 gm (this was replicated in a second energizing session). This "stretched" the mass of the beans such that when the energy dissipated overnight it did not return to its normal rest mass (37.545) but over compensated by a full gram.

Likewise, a replication of the test involving the same healers under more stringently controlled conditions, e.g., test mass enclosed behind glass windows, resulted in the same rubberband effect only in reverse. The test mass initially got heavier but subsequently rebounded to a lighter than pre-test weight. Several attempts to replicate these results by non-therapists demonstrated that the test mass could uniformly be made heavier; however, the rebound effect only returned the mass to its pre-test level and not beyond.

A second series of preliminary experiments with bioenergy healers demonstrated a similar rubberband effect. In a radioactive decay rate study, which tested the ability of the healers to alter the constant gamma decay rate of Cs-137, the results indicated that the Cs-137 peak increased at some point during the therapy session but, post-therapy, plummeted to a level below the pre-test average (testing is still underway with additional healers and controls).

Russian researchers have theorized that torsion fields may have both an elastic effect and a residual effect: both noticed in the previously described experiments with bioenergy healers. "The opinion that the Vacuum behaves as a super-fluid is commonly accepted. There are also researchers who believe that Physical Vacuum behaves as an elastic solid, precisely as aether was regarded at the times of I. Newton.. . Another feature of torsion fields must be mentioned. Just as a magnet produces residual magnetization in a ferro-magnet, the torsion source creates ‘residual’ polarization through acting upon the classical spin both at the levels of substance and the Physical Vacuum."3

VII. Gamma radiation, torsion fields, and psi-phenomena

Thus far it has been demonstrated and postulated that there is a connection between bioenergy healers, gamma radiation, and torsion fields. Is there also a possible link to the unexplained psi-phenomona that have perplexed scientists and theologians for centuries? According to the Russian pioneers in torsion field research, just as in electricity, the elementary particle charges are the primary source of field where the elementary particle spins are the primary sources of torsion field. However, gamma photons have also been identified as primary sources of torsion field.3 Furthermore, it has been stated and verified that the electromagnetic field can generate the torsion one. Thus, it stands to reason, that healers who can consciously increase the electromagnetic field surrounding their hands and, likewise, cause significant fluctuations in external gamma radiation around a subject’s body, are also creating permutations in the torsion field and, subsequently, the Vacuum itself.

VIII. Conclusion

This new paradigm describing the "Spin Doctor," advances our scientific understanding of bioenergy healing modalities by analyzing studies and data in order to develop a theory that takes into account our current understanding of physics and expands upon it. Too often data which does not fit our current understanding is ignored rather than trying to develop a theory which can explain the previous data as well as the new.

As a result of this new paradigm, we can now begin to understand, and thus demystify, the origins and actions of the "imaginary" aether of healing energies. This new model takes into account the well-known, and documented, beneficial effects of low-dose radiation as a potential mechanism in bioenergy healing. Furthermore, the acceptance and appreciation of torsion fields, with their influencable spin characteristics both in defining and refining matter, opens a new perspective of scientific exploration into psi-phenomena. Possibly, we can conclude that life, and even mind, may be a manifestation of the constant, albeit subtle, interaction of the wave packets classically known as "matter" with the underlying physically real Vacuum field.


* I will use the term "Vacuum" in the sense that the Russians refer to a Physical Vacuum or which we refer to as quantum vacuum. The Russian term has a materialistic quality.


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15. Heidt P. Effect of therapeutic touch on anxiety level of hospitalized patients. Nurs Res 1981; 30:32-37.

16. Guerrero MS. The effects of therapeutic touch on state-trait anxiety level of oncology patients. Masters Abstracts Int. 1985; 42:24(3).

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19. Wirth DP. The effect of non-contact therapeutic touch on the healing rate of full thickness dermal wounds. Subtle Energies 1 (1) 1992; 1-20.

20. Quinn JF, Strelkauskas AJ. Psychoimmunologic effects of therapeutic touch on practitioners and recently bereaved recipients: a pilot study. Adv Nurs Sci. 1993; 15(4);13-36.

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22. Liu SZ. Biological Effects of Low Level Ionizing Radiation and Molecular Biology Research. Norman Bethun University, Changchun, 1995.


I would like to thank Donald Reed, mathematician and physicist, for his gracious assistance in providing me with the Russian research on torsion fields and for reviewing my preliminary paper. I would also like to thank Dr. Harold Fox, and his staff, at the Journal of New Energy for their help in locating references for this work.

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