In my book on mind manipulation technologies and techniques, Microcosm and Medium (Lulu), I spent much of the first chapter trying to illustrate how the arts, and in particular, music, through an ancient doctrine called Affektenlehre (doctrine of the affects) played a major role in the cosmology and thinking of most composers up to the beginning of the classical and romantic eras, when there was a fundamental philosophical shift. Certain types of harmonic, rhythmic, and melodic procedures, and musical structure itself, contributed to a manipulation or evocation of specific universal human passions proper to the human nature. I also reviewed the mind manipulation research that took place in the Soviet bloc that was specifically tied to the arts and music. And, in addition to all of this, most of us have probably heard of those articles about plants growing better if exposed to certain type of music, or infants that have higher IQs when exposed to music, and so on.

That book sparked a somewhat lively discussion on this website in our members' vidchats, over whether or not this might have an effect on biological systems directly. On such occasions, I've told about my experiences growing up playing the pipe organs of various churches in and around Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Most of the instruments I practiced on were fairly substantial and large instruments, in "wet" acoustical chambers with lots of reverberation. Organs like this are unique, in that the soundbox of the instrument is the building itself, and not a box or sound chamber like on a piano or a guitar or violin. You're sitting inside the instrument, not outside of it, and the result is a very unique musico-physiological experience. One feels the vibrations of the music in a very unique and immediate way. That experience and those discussion led to speculations that perhaps there was a direct influence of music on genetic or epigenetic expression. And in my own experience, I credit having attempted to play the organ - no one ever really masters the instrument, it masters them - with my drive to connect dots and patterns across several different contexts, after all, that's what contrapuntal music and in particular, organ music are all about. It does something to the mind that is quite marvellous, and I know there are organists out there who know exactly what I'm talking about.

Well, lo and behold, one of our alert readers and regular article contributors, S.D., spotted this amazing article and passed it on to me, and when I saw the subject and read the article, it vaulted right to the top of my "finals" folder this week:

Life Rhythm as a Symphony of Oscillatory Patterns: Electromagnetic Energy and Sound Vibration Modulates Gene Expression for Biological Signaling and Healing

There are a number of quite astonishing statements in this paper that more or less confirm the idea that somehow, music modulates genetic expression and "rewires" the neural pathways of the brain; picking out just a few of these, and retaining their order in the paper, just consider the following:

All life exists within a sea of vibration, and rhythm is fundamental to all of life. Diurnal, seasonal, lunar, and solar cycles, and the resonant electromagnetic field (EMF) oscillations of our planet make up the symphony of rhythms in which life on Earth exists.

That statement alone is as succinct a modern statement of the ancient idea of the music of the spheres as I think can be made; it echoes the late Leonard Bernstein's phrase about music and the "poetry of earth" made during his 1973 Harvard Norton Poetry lectures. But the authors of the paper - David Muesham PhD and Carlo Ventura, MD., PhD - go on to include some rather astonishing research and details:

Rhythm is the fundamental characteristic of music. In frequencies, timbres, and the passage of beats through time to form rhythms, music is an apt metaphor for this carrier of life-information. And the notion that music can touch the core of our being and is as old as human consciousness. Plato grappled with the powers of music in The Republic, stating that the various Greek modes convey specific qualities: “Then beauty of style and harmony and grace and good rhythm depend on simplicity—I mean the true simplicity of a rightly and nobly ordered mind and character.” And though Shakespeare has been famously quoted as referring to music as the “food of love,” he went much further, writing that music has the power to create: “Orpheus with his lute made trees, And the mountain tops that freeze, Bow themselves, when he did sing,” and the power to destroy life: “In sweet music is such art, Killing care and grief of heart, Fall asleep, or hearing, die.”

Music has been shown to modulate several cardiac and neurological functions and to trigger measurable stress-reducing pathways, to modulate blood pressure, heart rate, respiration, EEG measurements, body temperature and galvanic skin response; alter immune and endocrine function; and ameliorate pain, anxiety, nausea, fatigue, and depression. Significant correspondence has been found between specific musical tones played to the skin through speakers and traditional Chinese descriptions musical tones associated with the acupuncture meridians. The notion that one “hears” sounds not only through the ears but rather through the whole body is echoed in the words of the Sufi musician, healer and mystic, Hazrat Inayat Khan:

A person does not hear sound only through the ears; he hears sound through every pore of his body. It permeates the entire being, and according to its particular influence either slows or quickens the rhythm of the blood circulation; it either wakens or soothes the nervous system. It arouses a person to greater passions or it calms him by bringing him peace. According to the sound and its influence a certain effect is produced. Sound becomes visible in the form of radiance. This shows that the same energy which goes into the form of sound before being visible is absorbed by the physical body. In that way the physical body recuperates and becomes charged with new magnetism.

Here, Khan reinforces the notion of a deep relationship between music and neurobiology, indicating that further understanding of how music can modify nervous system activity could have implications for developing mind-body-spirit therapies that are effective not only as adjuncts, but as central treatment modalities in rehabilitation and therapy.

There are other gems in the article, in addition to a mountain of details (which I hope the readers of this blog will read in the whole article). Here are just a few of those gems:

Also, a remarkable study recently found that the human body is able to distinguish at the molecular level between two different internal states: eudaimonic well-being, derived from “striving toward meaning and a noble purpose beyond simple self-gratification,” as compared to hedonic well-being, that which is derived from “positive affective experience.” Although hedonic and eudaimonic well-being produced similar subjective feelings of happiness, they were found to engage distinct gene regulatory programs.

Or this:

In order to encourage a medical tradition that incorporates understanding of the patient's mental, emotional, and interpersonal life, sensitivity and compassion are needed on the part of the healer. Such a medicine crosses the boundary of Science and Art, as the doctor's own sensitivity, clear understanding, and capacity for pathos would play an important role. And just as music can have the capacity to touch our deepest sentiments, and evoke feelings across the entire spectrum of human emotion, as scientists begin to understand the language of health, emotions, and heart rate variability, and begin to decode the language of cellular vibrations and biofield information, it may be possible to develop new forms of healing. As healers have used music for therapeutic purposes for centuries, might cell-music or EMF “biomusic” be further developed as a kind of medicine?

In a way, if one did not know otherwise, one might think one is reading a treatise about the Affektenlehre by Mattheson, or Werkmeister, or for that matter, passages of Albert Schweitzer (a physician and organist! [pupil of Widor]) in his biography of J.S. Bach, and his extended treatment of the musico-rhetorical practices Bach used - constantly - in his music and particularly his organ music. What the good authors of the article are suggesting is that there are actual quantifiable neurophysiological and genetic expressions that result from immersion in certain types of vibratory fields, whether electromagnetic, acoustic, or both. And most musicians playing in ensembles or solo, will be familiar in a very intuitive way that this is their experience.

This considerations lead to a final thought, namely, that perhaps it's time that these types of researchers and researches go back and look twice that the old exponents of the Affektenlehre, the Werckmeisters, the Matthesons, and so on, because if these authors are correct - and I definitely think they are - the old doctrine is being revived in a major way, and given some new scientific legs to stand on.

See you on the flip side...




Posted in

Joseph P. Farrell

Joseph P. Farrell has a doctorate in patristics from the University of Oxford, and pursues research in physics, alternative history and science, and "strange stuff". His book The Giza DeathStar, for which the Giza Community is named, was published in the spring of 2002, and was his first venture into "alternative history and science".


  1. zendogbreath on April 29, 2020 at 12:16 am
    Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring” by J.S. Bach, arr. Virgil Fox

    • guitardave on April 29, 2020 at 8:08 am

      Hey Zen , and everyone, check out this amazing young mans version. I had to hook up the computer speakers to my JBL/ Yamaha PA system and rock it…it’s not a cathedral, but if i put my chair in the right place and close my eyes, i can, as they say, “take a trip and never leave the farm”. Enjoy.

    • emlong on May 2, 2020 at 11:44 am

      The sound of wind driven water and leaves is a very high form of healing music.

  2. Loxie Lou Davie on April 28, 2020 at 3:39 pm

    This all reminds me of what Tesla said…..If you want to understand the Universe, think vibration, frequency & energy!!(Paraphrasing of course!)

    I remember, as I was crawling out of the remains of an abusive relationship, what “helped” me, at that point in time…..wait for it(!)…..B.B. KING!!! 😉 Then the Big Band Music… a teenager, because of my religious upbringing I was not allowed to listen to Elvis, etc.!!! So, I had a lot of “catching up” to do when I finally could explore for myself!!

    Then, in 2012, I had an experience which allows me to understand about being “inside” the instrument as Doc describes!! It was my first time to attend a quaint little Episcopal church & the organ music simply filled my Soul in a way that is difficult to describe!! First time I had ever experienced that!!

    I think we learn what music we need to hear to fit our moods!! I know that Boogie Woogie can really pick up my spirits!! 😉

  3. RBG Santa Monica on April 27, 2020 at 9:47 pm

    What in the world was Hazrat Inayat Khan talking about when he said, “Sound becomes visible in the form of radiance. This shows that the same energy which goes into the form of sound before being visible is absorbed by the physical body.”
    I don’t know if here radiance is a metaphor, or if it refers to sonoluminescence of some kind, or if it is a general analogy for frequency (comparing sound to the electromagnetic spectrum). Or maybe Sufi mystics have developed an ability to “see” sound.

    • anakephalaiosis on April 28, 2020 at 7:30 am

      Music has of course entertainment value. It can also be a means to an end. It can be an aid, to concentrate the mind.

      The Scottish pipe has a drone, that provides a carrier wave, for a traveling mind. So does the traditional Norwegian fiddle.

      Soul is an element, that can be concentrated, expanded, and used as means in warfare, since it creates fear in dark corners.

      Flaming swords are kept sharp with music.

  4. Claude on April 27, 2020 at 1:02 pm

    Thank you Dr.Joseph P. Farrell

  5. Robert Barricklow on April 27, 2020 at 11:09 am

    Conversely I grew up in nature. I would be in the forests or exploring ravines, etc. Out all days even before I was old enough for school/Kindergarten. The point I’m making here is that your environment deeply effects/affects your being. Nature was my music and she communicated w/me. She was alive as one; and communicated w/me intimately. As I grew, these became deeper and; turns out, dangerous

    White Rabbit

    • Robert Barricklow on April 27, 2020 at 11:57 am

      I was of out of my element in “civilization”.
      For example, I was run over by a Cadillac at the age of 3. The driver backed out of his driveway and ran me over. He had a heart attack, and we were both taken in the same ambulance.[Perhaps why I/m so crazy about machines and their true nature; although, my 69 GTO was my Talisman. I truly miss her. Bought her when she was totaled and left for dead.]

      Now mankind is in a different sea of electromagnetic nature; one that has been literally running him over. Soon, their Cadillac/5G will be rolling out, as the predators up their killing frequencies, and fine tune for more mass media banquets for the dead.

      Coronavirus, a weapon of mass deception; working hand in hand w/her electromagnetic cousins, weapons of mass destruction[at the expense of, both life and spirit]

      Music is another example of nature’s true beauty in harmony w/man’s spirit in body & soul. An example of the electromagnetic junk that is polluting the sea of real music w/toxic derivatives. Just another weapon of electromagnetic destruction, destroying the natural living universe created for all living spirits; at once, instantaneously.

      The weapons of mass deception,
      include the new CIA “Live-from-Guantanamo” music as well.

      White Rabbit

      • Loxie Lou Davie on April 28, 2020 at 3:22 pm

        Enjoyed what you wrote, Robert!!! Your experience at age 3 reminded me of what happened to Bob Dean at about the same age!! He distinctly remembers falling over a cliff into the creek…..then a strong pair of hands picked him up & set him on the bank once again!!

        I’m sure your own life has had a serious purpose, as did Bob’s life!! 😉

  6. Miguel Oniga on April 27, 2020 at 10:30 am

    So jungle-beat seems to be worth something after all.

    • anakephalaiosis on April 28, 2020 at 6:56 am

      Jungle rhythm is a cul-de-sac, limited to the border of its own entrapment.

      Counterpoint fugue is a Jacob’s ladder out of the entrapment of mind.

      Purpose of Bach is refreshment of soul, and so is the counterpoint of Ryne-Stafas.

      Sundial science is a circular Jacob’s ladder.

  7. guitardave on April 27, 2020 at 9:32 am

    Excellent post Doc!
    Its been known for quite some time that the long term learning process involved with becoming a competent musician physically changes the development and structure of the brain.
    This type of understanding has always struck me as only a minor part of what music really does….Its the materialists typical reduction of something way more complex and amazing into the, “see, the brains like a muscle and learning music is a workout, case closed”
    They never consider the fact that all that practice and listening involves the players body being bathed in vibes…weather holding the instrument against your body or literally ‘being inside it’. (I’m jealous of your choice of instrument, Doc… when i was young i used to wonder what it would sound like to be inside the body of my acoustic guitar 🙂
    I have met more than a few people who have all the ‘musicians brain’ traits but did not play a note. What they did do was listen to a LOT of instrumental music (mostly classical and jazz) and NOT thru headphones or digital devices, but either at live performances, or thru speakers in a acoustically decent room….either way, a whole body experience. ( This is a fine example of how the above studies are ‘tweaked’ and NOT really conclusive due to the constricted selection of participants…just more partial truth BS [bad science])
    So don’t fret 🙂 non-musicians… as this post shows, ALL humans-with-being benefit from this gift of the gods…its only a matter of properly immersing oneself.

    • Billy Bob on April 27, 2020 at 1:16 pm

      Umm…so that’s what attracted me to live jazz and symphony music venues in Minneapolis and Houston?
      My mind knew they were good for me.

      • Billy Bob on April 27, 2020 at 1:51 pm

        …and my doubting Thomas had me thinking I was like Charlie Tuna in the Starfish tuna televsion ads… for those old enough to remember them?

  8. Roger on April 27, 2020 at 9:11 am

    Along with fiction novels music has deffinately been weaponized. The lyrics encourage crime, suicide, drugs and many other social dysfunctions. Perhaps on top of the obvious perhaps the beat and tones themselves, along with the volume promoted by the industry, is designed to damage our physical being as well. Maybe it’s not just the atomic testing and electromagnetic radiation tearing us apart but the music being pushed as well?

    • guitardave on April 27, 2020 at 9:47 am

      No doubt Roger. Tavistock knew ALL about that.
      Music incorporates ALL the emotions. Plato actually suggested outlawing certain ‘modes’ and scales in the Republic…they’re the same ones used that create the lovely thing called a ‘mosh pit’…if you can’t see the cause-effect on that one, you must be deaf and blind….( which i would rather be, than listen to that stuff)

    • Robert Barricklow on April 27, 2020 at 11:44 pm

      Agreed Roger.
      I’ll pass on the NY Times best sellers lists.
      The magazines are just as bad.
      All on the same page as corporate news[al mediums].
      Music has just gotten progressively worse as well through the decades; especially, since the CIA began to extend its tentacles into American culture.

  9. anakephalaiosis on April 27, 2020 at 6:56 am

    Channeling music of spheres, is becoming focal point of wandering stars. Sometimes called Odin, Thor, Tir, etc.

    There is a “click”, when a critical mass is achieved, becoming one with the morphogenetic field.

    When slaves are in presence of greatness, they are unable to comprehend it, because tree can not be dreamt by twig.

    Bard is angelic epicenter of vibrant tsunami.

    Old King Cole was a merry old soul, [ᛢ]
    And a merry old soul was he;
    He called for his pipe, [ᚸ]
    and he called for his bowl, [ᛣ,ᛤ]
    And he called for his fiddlers three. [ᛥ]

    (Trilithon is gateway through Stone, a Stargate, in mathematical symbol Pi. In Old Norse called “High, Just-As-High, and Third”.)

    Genesis – Guide Vocal:

    • anakephalaiosis on April 27, 2020 at 7:37 am

      Just a friendly reminder about, how bloodwrack has already entered the equation:

      The USA’s imperial footprints in Europe have awoken enemies, that are beyond comprehension.

      Trees can retaliate against twigs, by breaking them off, and disowning them. Matthew 5:30.

      In a Bardic sense, that is called curse, when Orpheus invokes “harmony of disharmony”.

      • anakephalaiosis on April 27, 2020 at 7:57 am


        Orpheus went to hell, to sing song,
        for Eurydice to tag along,
        but cow lost track
        looking back,
        and now moon is all wrong.

      • Billy Bob on April 27, 2020 at 5:00 pm

        I ended up here after reading about Iceland. Remember seeing article awhile back.
        The author’s webpage led me here since his background is physics applied to the social sciences.
        Interesting stuff here no charge. Option is to go anonymous or create an account.

  10. DanaThomas on April 27, 2020 at 6:02 am

    This is THE topic, “perilously” close to profound metaphor matters.

  11. goshawks on April 27, 2020 at 5:54 am

    A profound synchronicity: I literally just got finished watching The Last Mimzy (2007) for about the fourth time. It is profoundly concerned with “Life Rhythm as a Symphony of Oscillatory Patterns.” It is one of those Wisdom stories wrapped-up into a ‘family’ movie. It is also one of the highest-vibration movies I have ever watched. Highly recommended. (It is slow at first as they build the plot; there are no car chases or shoot-’em-ups.)

    (And RB & ZDB & OC & All, hang in there to the very last scene. I think you’ll like their insight on humanity’s future…)

    • Robert Barricklow on April 27, 2020 at 11:57 pm

      Thanks for the recommendation.
      Once my library re-opens I’ll get a copy.
      {providing the medical Nazis haven’t classified libraries as unhealthy – due to the many mental viruses they contain; especially, in classical works]

    • zendogbreath on April 29, 2020 at 12:19 am

      thank you. will do.

    • zendogbreath on April 29, 2020 at 12:26 am

      thank you. will do.
      anything with Michael Clark Duncan is a classic.
      just watched the trailer.
      Phenomenon kinda did the same for me. Still gets us going to hear
      helped us turn around one of our darker times.

      • zendogbreath on April 29, 2020 at 1:15 am

        Gets me to thinking how odd to have gotten this far in life and healed from as much as we all have using literature and music from the sources we have that thouse sources were as ill intended as they seem to have been:

        That’s not to discount the possibility that we are being demoralized by undermining our beliefs in what we feel has helped us all these years. It will be disappointing if someone starts trying to convince me Bach was worshipping demons though.

        • Krista tiffy on April 29, 2020 at 10:47 am

          Thank you for the article. , Many years ago I participated in a summer music and poetry conference at Cambridge University .
          I was a drama student at the time and was asked to read a poem by Emerson, as I was an American…. Anyway, I was also a student of Eurythmy, and my teacher was performing a Bach piece with a violinist with the Medici Quartet, anyway I remember hearing a lecture on Bach’s interest in Gematria or whatever you call it and number….
          I associate numbers with demons or rather daimons, quantifiable loses being ness or not?
          I don’t know I get rather mercurial and sadly murky about it all. I think music is a risky subject, personally I like the human voice as an instrument .and a simple instrument when played well, like Nick Drake’s guitar and I feel the essence of tone is what matters

      • zendogbreath on April 29, 2020 at 1:29 am

        and then there’s this:
        Thomas Newman – The Orchard (Phenomenon Soundtrack)

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