Science, C, C, C part 5

If you only read the selections from this story you will get the sense of the whole article. I’d suggest you read the entire article before someone pulls the wires.

To illustrate what he meant, Frey held up a glass of water. “We’re all just big teacups, bags of water that you can heat up—that’s the paradigm,” he said. It’s the engineer’s paradigm, the mind-set of people who had no training in the complexity of living systems. The branches of the military, the major defense contractors, the manufacturers of microwave ovens, the telecom companies, were happy to embrace the engineer’s paradigm. The thinking was simple and easy to understand, and most important, it indemnified their operations from liability.

“It’s a very primitive mind-set,” said Frey. “Plato said we don’t see the reality; we see shadows on the cave walls. We’ve got a lot of people who are seeing shadows and saying this is the reality.” He nodded at his water glass. “We now know a human being isn’t a bag of water. A human being is a complex organization of electrical fields. Electroencephalograms and electrocardiograms, for example, measure these fields. Every cell has an electrical field across the cell membrane, which is a regulatory interface and controls what goes into and out of the cell. All nerve signals are electric. And between the nucleus and the membrane there is an electrical field, you can measure voltages of individual cells! Electricity drives biology. We evolved in a particular electromagnetic environment”—the magnetic fields from the earth’s iron core, the terrestrial magnetism from lodestones, visible light, ultraviolet frequencies, lightning—”and if we change that environment as we have, we either adapt or we have trouble.”

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