I don't know about you, but as we've been making our way through this plandemic, I was thinking just last week that it would be nice to have a "fun" story or two to blog about. Well, lo and behold, I didn't have to wait long as the next day our friend and colleague in this wild alternative research field, Catherine Austin Fitts, sent me a video with an interesting idea.
The idea, basically, is that pipe organs might have been intended for more than just music or "being loud", but might have played some sort of role - perhaps intended, perhaps unintended - in healing as well. We'll get back to that notion in a moment. Anyway, the video is a bit "preachy", and indulges in some nonsense like modern cities being designed solely for profit, while 18th century cities weren't, and so on. Well, maybe, maybe not. The idea of profit has been around for a very very long time, longer than pipe organs in fact, which are still in the prime of their youth being only a little older than two thousand years, give or take a couple centuries. In spite of the preachy aspects, there's another reason I thought this video would be fun, but you have to watch and not just listen:
Now if you watched this video, you'll probably know why I found it very interesting: all those pictures of Dr. Royal Raymond Rife and his laboratory, including his famous "tunable microscope". Rife's idea was to view viruses "in action", which he claimed his microscope allowed him to do, without killing the virus under an electron microscope. Being thus able to view them, the next step in his process was to find what frequency it was resonant to, and simply "explode" the virus using sound waves resonant to that frequency. Think of that old television commercial with Ella Fitzgerald shattering a glass with a high musical note resonant to the glass's own frequency.
Of course, the medical establishment had a problem with this, and it was a big one: what Rife was claiming for his "tunable microscope" was - and remains - physically impossible according to the standard laws of optics, for he was claiming to see - optically - far below the scale of size that was possible for any optical microscope. He was, accordingly, denounced as a fraud by the medical establishment (in spite of the numerous statements of his patients as to the effectiveness of his treatments). Rife was stripped of his medical license, and his equipment - including his microscope - was confiscated, never to be seen again. My guess? Rife was probably successful, and his microscope probably still exists, somewhere, as an object of (very secret) research. The microscope and its operation remains a mystery. Lt. Col. Tom Bearden (US Army, Ret.), even wrote a paper once trying to come up with a hypothesis to explain what Rife had done. To make a long hypothesis very short, he maintained that Rife had somehow come up with a "quantum microscope" able to see the phase space of viruses, and that it was therefore not functioning according to the standard rules of optics altogether. But we'll never know because the microscope is probably locked up in some "Warehouse 13" somewhere, like the television series with Saul Rubinek.
Which brings us back to the pipe organ aspect of this, because if one digs and scratches around the old doctrine of Affektenlehre - the cosmological doctrine that virtually all Baroque composers were aware of and composed in - long enough, one encounters connections to all sorts of notions that moderns find dismissibly amusing: affects of certain keys and harmonic procedures and musical intervals on human passions, connections to the idea of bodily humours and so on. In short, they were very much aware of the physiological effects of music and particular instruments in performing it. And as an organist(of sorts and a long out-of-practice one struggling to get back to where he was some forty years ago), anecdotally I can attest to a phenomenon all organists experience at the console of a pipe organ, particularly if it is large and the organ is in a "wet", i.e., highly reverberative, space: one feels the music physiologically in a way possible on no other instrument; those longitudinal waves pulsing from the pipes literally move the air and shake the building, and anything and anyone in it, in a kind of small "musical earthquake". Indeed, at the end of my book Microcosm and Medium (available on Lulu), I even indulged in a bit of hyper-dimensional physics speculation, for pipe organs are most often encountered in large, cruciform stone churches. It's that cruciform part that's intriguing here, because it is a three dimensional analogue of a four-dimensional object called a hyper-cube, or tesseract. Vibrating the one might indeed be vibrating the other, inducing all sorts of effects we know little about, simply because we haven't studied it. And for those aware of "cymatics" and the way water responds to sound waves, or has seen those pictures of "healthy" versus "unhealthy" water molecules, I do not have much difficulty with the notion that perhaps there were medicinal and therapeutic by-products to - say - a fugue by Buxtehude or a fantasia by Mozart. The notion seems far-fetched to moderns, perhaps, but to a Bach or a Haendel or a Haydn or a Mozart, who knew the doctrine and composed for the instrument, it would not have been a surprising notion at all.
See you on the flip side...