The legal imagination

I have the right to remain silent (2017). Oil on canvas (35 x 25cm). Private Collection.I have the right to remain silent (2017). Oil on canvas by Albert Barqué-Duran.

Hypotheticals, fantastical beings, and a fictional omnibus: legal reasoning is made supple by its use of the imagination

Maksymilian Del Mar is a reader in legal theory at the School of Law at Queen Mary University of London. He is the co-editor of Legal Fictions in Theory and Practice (2015). He lives in London.

The legal world is wonderfully strange. Pull down a dusty volume of case law from a barrister’s bookshelf, and you’ll discover a parade of fantastical beings that could have been lifted from the pages of Jorge Luis Borges or Dr Seuss. In the law, constitutions behave like living trees, the island of Minorca is treated as a suburb of London, immobile houses suddenly zoom along beltways, Clapham omnibuses are packed with reasonable men, and spectral officious bystanders routinely spy on contractual negotiations. The legal realm is full of unlikely and improbable possibilities, as well as paths not taken, counterfactuals, mights, perhapses and maybes.

All of this draws on the faculty of the imagination. You’d be forgiven for thinking of a judge as someone who spends all day shoehorning ‘the facts’ into pre-fabricated principles, and laying down determinative rulings like geological strata. In fact, legal reasoning is a much more supple exercise. Individual judges must resolve knotty questions under conditions of uncertainty, and in a context in which there’s usually profound disagreement about both what has happened and what ought to be done about it. 

In these circumstances, imagination performs many salutary functions. Indeed, legal reasoning would be impossible without it. Imagination allows judges to explore what might be at stake in any particular dispute, and to provide a set of resources for future decision-makers. It lets them communicate doubt and express hesitation. And it brings the language of law alive, moving us and inviting us to imagine further – and so enables a thriving, interactive community of enquiry.

Of course, imagination also carries certain dangers. It might encourage bias, or signal a departure from common sense. But overall it should be celebrated – in law and, perhaps, in other domains where people must engage in the messy business of public reasoning.

Legal reasoning has at least four imaginative abilities at its disposal. The first is supposing: pretending that something is the case when you know or suspect that it’s not. Judges have been doing this sort of ‘as-if’ style of imagining for thousands of years. Courts in ancient Rome frequently used a mechanism known as fictio civitatis, the fiction of citizenship, which let authorities rule on the behaviour of ‘aliens’ as if they were Romans. As Gaius, a celebrated jurist in the second century CE, said:

If it appears that a golden cup has been stolen from Lucius Titius by Dio the son of Hermaeus or by his aid and counsel, on which account, if he were a Roman citizen, he would be bound to compound for the wrong as a thief.

Fictions are not just the preserve of the West. In 17th-century China, clans of villagers set up ‘companies’ that collected and distributed capital to their members, who were supposedly united by kinship with common ancestors. But as the legal scholar Teemu Ruskola at Emory University in Atlanta argues in Legal Orientalism (2013), ‘the idiom of the family was frequently only a legal fiction used to recruit members, many of whom were not even related by blood to the clan they joined’. Needless to say, this fiction often proved useful in raising revenue for the company.

However, I will focus on the common law – a tradition that comes from Britain, and in which the authority for a principle is settled through the slow accretion of case law and custom, rather than by setting out everything in statutes or codes. This mode of thought involves its fair share of judge-invented fictions. In the 18th-century case of Mostyn v Fabrigas, for example, a resident of Minorca – an island off the coast of Spain that was under British rule – claimed that he had been falsely imprisoned by the British government. To gain jurisdiction, the British court treated the territory as if it were a suburb of London.

Legal scholars usually dislike such judicial inventiveness. ‘[T]he pestilential breath of Fiction poisons the sense of every instrument it comes near,’ wrote the jurist and philosopher Jeremy Bentham in 1776. He said that imagination had infected the law like syphilis, ‘begotten in the bed of metaphor’ – something of an irony, given his own turn of phrase. Bentham claimed that legal language would reflect the truth of affairs only if it were direct and free of ornament, and accused lawyers of deliberately mystifying the law so as to retain sole guardianship over its mysteries – and thereby enrich themselves…

mores…

https://aeon.co/essays/why-judges-and-lawyers-need-imagination-as-much-as-rationality

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Polish Poet and Nobel Laureate Wisława Szymborska on How Our Certitudes Keep Us Small and the Generative Power of Not-Knowing

Art by Salvador Dalí from a rare edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

“Attempt what is not certain. Certainty may or may not come later. It may then be a valuable delusion,” the great painter Richard Diebenkorn counseled in his ten rules for beginning creative projects. “One doesn’t arrive — in words or in art — by necessarily knowing where one is going,” the artist Ann Hamilton wrote a generation later in her magnificent meditation on the generative power of not-knowing. “In every work of art something appears that does not previously exist, and so, by default, you work from what you know to what you don’t know.”

What is true of art is even truer of life, for a human life is the greatest work of art there is. (In my own life, looking back on my ten most important learnings from the first ten years of Brain Pickings, I placed the practice of the small, mighty phrase “I don’t know” at the very top.) But to live with the untrammeled openendedness of such fertile not-knowing is no easy task in a world where certitudes are hoarded as the bargaining chips for status and achievement — a world bedeviled, as Rebecca Solnit memorably put it, by “a desire to make certain what is uncertain, to know what is unknowable, to turn the flight across the sky into the roast upon the plate.”

That difficult feat of insurgency is what the great Polish poet Wisława Szymborska (July 2, 1923–February 1, 2012) explored in 1996 when she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature for capturing the transcendent fragility of the human experience in masterpieces like “Life-While-You-Wait” and “Possibilities.”

In her acceptance speech, later included in Nobel Lectures: From the Literature Laureates, 1986 to 2006 (public library) — which also gave us the spectacular speech on the power of language Toni Morrison delivered after becoming the first African American woman to win the Nobel Prize — Szymborska considers why artists are so reluctant to answer questions about what inspiration is and where it comes from:

It’s not that they’ve never known the blessing of this inner impulse. It’s just not easy to explain something to someone else that you don’t understand yourself.

Noting that she, too, tends to be rattled by the question, she offers her wieldiest answer:

Inspiration is not the exclusive privilege of poets or artists generally. There is, has been, and will always be a certain group of people whom inspiration visits. It’s made up of all those who’ve consciously chosen their calling and do their job with love and imagination. It may include doctors, teachers, gardeners — and I could list a hundred more professions. Their work becomes one continuous adventure as long as they manage to keep discovering new challenges in it. Difficulties and setbacks never quell their curiosity. A swarm of new questions emerges from every problem they solve. Whatever inspiration is, it’s born from a continuous “I don’t know.”

In a sentiment of chilling prescience today, as we witness tyrants drunk on certainty drain the world of its essential inspiration, Szymborska considers the destructive counterpoint to this generative not-knowing:

All sorts of torturers, dictators, fanatics, and demagogues struggling for power by way of a few loudly shouted slogans also enjoy their jobs, and they too perform their duties with inventive fervor. Well, yes, but they “know.” They know, and whatever they know is enough for them once and for all. They don’t want to find out about anything else, since that might diminish their arguments’ force. And any knowledge that doesn’t lead to new questions quickly dies out: it fails to maintain the temperature required for sustaining life. In the most extreme cases, cases well known from ancient and modern history, it even poses a lethal threat to society.

This is why I value that little phrase “I don’t know” so highly. It’s small, but it flies on mighty wings. It expands our lives to include the spaces within us as well as those outer expanses in which our tiny Earth hangs suspended. If Isaac Newton had never said to himself “I don’t know,” the apples in his little orchard might have dropped to the ground like hailstones and at best he would have stooped to pick them up and gobble them with gusto. Had my compatriot Marie Sklodowska-Curie never said to herself “I don’t know”, she probably would have wound up teaching chemistry at some private high school for young ladies from good families, and would have ended her days performing this otherwise perfectly respectable job. But she kept on saying “I don’t know,” and these words led her, not just once but twice, to Stockholm, where restless, questing spirits are occasionally rewarded with the Nobel Prize…

more…

https://www.brainpickings.org/

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The Sane Society: The Great Humanistic Philosopher and Psychologist Erich Fromm on How to Save Us From Ourselves

“The whole life of the individual is nothing but the process of giving birth to himself; indeed, we should be fully born, when we die.”

 

“Every advance of intellect beyond the ordinary measure,” Schopenhauer wrote in examining the relationship between genius and insanity, “disposes to madness.” But could what is true of the individual also be true of society — could it be that the more so-called progress polishes our collective pride and the more intellectually advanced human civilization becomes, the more it risks madness? And, if so, what is the proper corrective to restore our collective sanity?

That’s what the great German humanistic philosopher and psychologist Erich Fromm (March 23, 1900–March 18, 1980) explores in his timely 1956 treatise The Sane Society (public library).

Fifteen years after his inquiry into why totalitarian regimes rise in Escape from Freedom, Fromm examines the promise and foibles of modern democracy, focusing on its central pitfall of alienation and the means to attaining its full potential — the idea that “progress can only occur when changes are made simultaneously in the economic, socio-political and cultural spheres; that any progress restricted to one sphere is destructive to progress in all spheres.”

Two decades before his elegant case for setting ourselves free from the chains of our culture, Fromm weighs the validity of our core assumption about our collective state:

Nothing is more common than the idea that we, the people living in the Western world of the twentieth century, are eminently sane. Even the fact that a great number of individuals in our midst suffer from more or less severe forms of mental illness produces little doubt with respect to the general standard of our mental health. We are sure that by introducing better methods of mental hygiene we shall improve still further the state of our mental health, and as far as individual mental disturbances are concerned, we look at them as strictly individual incidents, perhaps with some amazement that so many of these incidents should occur in a culture which is supposedly so sane.

Can we be so sure that we are not deceiving ourselves? Many an inmate of an insane asylum is convinced that everybody else is crazy, except himself.

Fromm notes that while modernity has increased the material wealth and comfort of the human race, it has also wrought major wars that killed millions, during which “every participant firmly believed that he was fighting in his self-defense, for his honor, or that he was backed up by God.” In a sentiment of chilling pertinence today, after more than half a century of alleged progress has drowned us in mind-numbing commercial media and left us to helplessly watch military budgets swell at the expense of funding for the arts and humanities, Fromm writes:

We have a literacy above 90 per cent of the population. We have radio, television, movies, a newspaper a day for everybody. But instead of giving us the best of past and present literature and music, these media of communication, supplemented by advertising, fill the minds of men with the cheapest trash, lacking in any sense of reality, with sadistic phantasies which a halfway cultured person would be embarrassed to entertain even once in a while. But while the mind of everybody, young and old, is thus poisoned, we go on blissfully to see to it that no “immorality” occurs on the screen. Any suggestion that the government should finance the production of movies and radio programs which would enlighten and improve the minds of our people would be met again with indignation and accusations in the name of freedom and idealism.

Art by Edward Gorey from The Shrinking of Treehorn

Less than a decade after the German philosopher Josef Pieper made his beautiful case for why leisure is the basis of culture, Fromm adds:

We have reduced the average working hours to about half what they were one hundred years ago. We today have more free time available than our forefathers dared to dream of. But what has happened? We do not know how to use the newly gained free time; we try to kill the time we have saved, and are glad when another day is over… Society as a whole may be lacking in sanity.

Fromm points out that we can only speak of a “sane” society if we acknowledge that a society can be not sane, which in turn requires a departure from previous theories of sociological relativism postulating that “each society is normal inasmuch as it functions, and that pathology can be defined only in terms of the individual’s lack of adjustment to the ways of life in his society.” Instead, Fromm proposes a model of normative humanism — a redemptive notion that relieves some of our self-blame for feeling like we are going crazy, by acknowledging that society itself, when bedeviled by certain pathologies, can be crazy-making for the individual…

more…

https://www.brainpickings.org/

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Pain Is the Best Antidote to Your Unfilfilling, Sedentary Office Job

by John McDermott

If you’ve wondered why some people insist on inflicting pain on themselves, you now you have your answer

The debilitating effects of a sedentary office job will terrify anyone who has one. Spending your day hunched over a desk ruins posture and flexibility, causes neck and back pain, makes your bones soft (really) and increases the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity. Simply put: Sitting all day makes us fat, sick and sore—not to mention bored and unfulfilled.

The antidote, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, is pain, specifically in the form of a hyper intense workout regimen.

The suffering that comes with running a marathon or participating in a race like Tough Mudder, which entails crawling around in mud and pretending you’re a Navy SEAL, obviously helps offset the weak bones and paunchy stomach that typically come from hours spent staring blankly at a computer screen. But it also fights against the existential dread of monotonous office work. “For individuals who feel that modern office work has made their bodies redundant, obstacle racing and other forms of short but intense and painful activities provide a brief but acute reappearance of the body,” study coauthor Julien Cayla, assistant professor at the Nanyang Business School in Singapore, tells Futurity.

The findings coincide with pre-existing research about office workers needing to engage in some kind of physical activity to stay sharp. Tough Mudders are on the extreme end of the spectrum, however — most people would benefit from taking periodic walking breaks throughout the day. Sitting for long periods of time slows down your cognitive functioning, while walking gets blood flowing to your brain, makes your thinking more balanced and gives your senses a break from the usual office stimuli, fostering creativity.

But the findings also suggest a disturbing conclusion about the nature of modern work, and our relationship to it. Simply put: Our work doesn’t meet our fundamental needs as humans. The modern “knowledge economy” revolves around people doing silent, sedentary work for more than half their waking hours, creating work that doesn’t occupy physical space, but instead lives only in the ether of the internet.

It’s a scenario so utterly unsatisfying — both physically and spiritually — that people have to crawl under electrified fences in sub-freezing temperatures just to feel alive. Which is not to say we were better off as an agrarian or industrial civilization. But there’s something undeniably fulfilling about working with your hands and forging something tangible, a satisfaction our current job market fails to provide us.

https://melmagazine.com/pain-is-the-best-antidote-to-your-unfilfilling-sedentary-office-job-abf96f398515#.y7t6mo1uc

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Why Power Brings Out Your True Self

Hutson_BR

SELF-ACTUALIZATION: Power can release your inhibitions and set your true nature free. But how you handle power depends on who you were before you got the crown. (Apparently Henry II of England, above, was an impetuous, divisive fellow.)National Portrait Gallery, London

Are you a tyrant or a servant?

At the 2012 Democratic National Convention, Michelle Obama told the crowd, “Being president doesn’t change who you are. It reveals who you are.”

Growing up, Michelle said, she and Barack learned important lessons from their families about “dignity and decency” and “gratitude and humility.” “At the end of the day,” she said, “when it comes time to make that decision, as president, all you have to guide you are your values, and your vision, and the life experiences that make you who you are.”

Research in cognitive science reveals the former First Lady is right: Power exposes your true character. It releases inhibitions and sets your inner self free. If you’re a jerk when you gain power, you’ll become more of one. If you’re a mensch, you’ll get nicer. So if you happen to all of a sudden become president, or at least president of your lab or book club, what inner self will come out?

Psychologists generally define power as control over others, by providing or withholding resources, without social interference. Tapping your true nature, though, begins with feeling powerful. Getting the corner office boosts creativity and reduces conformity.

In a 2008 experiment, undergraduates were asked either to recall a time they had power over someone or to recall a time someone had power over them.1 Then they were asked to draw an alien creature. Some were shown an example creature that had wings. When feeling powerless, seeing a creature with wings increased the chance a student would add wings to his own creature, a demonstration of conformity. Those made to feel powerful, however, remained unaffected by the example, following their own creative urges.

Power also makes people more likely to act on their desires. In one experiment, those made to feel powerful were more likely to move or unplug an annoying fan blowing on them.2 When working with others, the powerful are also more likely to voice their opinions. In another experiment, students were paired for a joint task.3 The one assigned to be the leader of the pair typically expressed her true feelings and attitudes more than her subordinate did.

When people obtain power, don’t expect them to behave dramatically differently from how they did before.

We are less deliberative and more persistent in pursuing our goals when we gain power. In one of a series of experiments, researchers asked students to recall having or lacking power, then asked how much time and information they would need to make various decisions, including which roommate to live with or which car to buy.4 Those who felt powerful said they’d need less time and information. In a second experiment, participants made to feel powerful spent more time trying to solve an impossible geometric puzzle. In a third, they were quicker to interrupt someone who disagreed with them.

Overall, power makes us feel authentic. In one study, participants recalled a time they had power or a time they lacked it.5 Then they rated their personality traits in three contexts: with their parents, at work, and in a social gathering. They also rated their feelings of authenticity in the moment, with items such as “I feel like I can be myself with others.” Feeling powerful increased the consistency of people’s personality ratings, which in turn increased their feelings of authenticity.

Power’s effects on expression result largely from the fact that it frees us from dependence on others, allowing us to ignore their concerns and pursue our own objectives. Intoxication from power leads us to focus more clearly on whatever goal we have in mind. With clear focus on a goal, we then pursue it.

Those goals are often selfish, which would seem to support the historian Lord Acton’s dictum that “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” But it’s not that simple. “The model is more complex than that,” says Melissa Williams, a psychologist at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, who has written about what leads power to corrupt or ennoble. In a review article in the Journal of Management, Williams summarized research that outlines four main categories of traits—personality, individualism, values, and desire for power—that can guide unethical or ethical leadership.6

It’s no surprise the traits of narcissism and Machiavellianism are stoked by power. A German study comparing 76 inmates convicted of high-level white-collar crimes with 150 managers on the outside found that the criminals were more narcissistic.7 A Dutch study published last year found that among 225 managers, those scoring higher on Machiavellianism were rated by their subordinates as abusive (“Our supervisor ridicules us”).8

Ethical leadership, on the other hand, arises out of several positive personality traits. In one study, 81 leaders in Dutch organizations were evaluated by their subordinates.9 People rated their bosses on traits such as agreeableness and honesty-humility. They also rated their bosses on aspects of leadership style, such as ethics and supportiveness. Honest, humble leaders were more ethical than others, while agreeable leaders were more supportive. They served their followers rather than demanding to be served.

Another influential personality trait is one’s propensity to feel guilt. Business managers who said they’d feel strong guilt after, say, running over a small animal were also more likely to report feeling responsible for others, and in turn they were rated as more effective leaders by their peers, superiors, and subordinates.10

One study looked at the role of social responsibility among CEOs.11 The more the chief executives expressed internal moral obligation—feeling the need to be responsible and do the right thing—the more they were seen to be moral and fair, and the less they were seen to act “like a tyrant or despot.”…

more…

http://nautil.us/issue/46/balance/why-power-brings-out-your-true-self

 

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The Strange Blissfulness of Storms

Scoles_BR-art

Is there a biochemical reason that extreme weather makes us happy?

Ifelt pretty sure something was wrong when the deer began running toward me. I knew something was wrong when a pine branch flew by my head. The air went dark and a noise like a train barreled through the forest, the actual wind coming after the sound of itself. The trees all swayed in the same direction, and then came the slap of thunder.

I felt more than saw the huge shelf cloud, a wall of black striped with electricity, surge forward over the ridge of the Allegheny Mountains overlooking Green Bank, West Virginia. A sharp line against the blue sky, it looked less like weather and more like a Rothko. I lived in this remote town, and I was on my usual afternoon run, picking my way across the trails that led from my house to the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, where I worked. Adrenaline told me I needed to fly, faster.

I ran two miles in 12 minutes, a pace I’d never maintained before and never have since, hurdling downed trees and power lines. When I got back to my house, surprised to be safe, I dragged my dog down to the farmhouse basement. After a restless 30 seconds, though, I bolted back upstairs, threw the door open, and stood on the porch. A wall of wind hit me. Lightning struck like a strobe. I felt awakened, alive, engaged. As the edge of the front pushed forward, the force seemed to clear the air and charge the whole scene with yellow-lit significance.

Scoles_BR-storm
STORM INSIDE: Negative ions released in a thunderstorm, foreboded by a massive shelf cloud over a plain, might affect us in a way that explains the emotional rush we feel in extreme weather.NZP Chasers

I’m not the first to feel this way, or write about it. “It was his impression that not just he but other people too felt better in hurricanes,” wrote Walker Percy in his novel The Last Gentleman, published in 1966. Today, people crowd around Weather Channel broadcasts and cross their fingers that storms will strengthen. They get giddy over thundersnow. Percy, a philosopher as well as a novelist, was intrigued by the phenomenon. In one of his earliest essays, published in the 1950s, he asked, “Why do people often feel bad in good environments and good in bad environments?”

Why hurricanes elevate our mood—lift us out of a malaise we might not even know we’re sunk in—is a rich question for philosophers, novelists, and people who like philosophy and novels. It’s deepened by the fact that our giddiness often comes spiked with guilt, and a revulsion at ourselves for hoping for, and enjoying, something so destructive.

But the thrill of storms may not just be a psychological phenomenon. A branch of science called biometeorology attempts to explain the impact of atmospheric processes on organisms and ecosystems. Biometeorologists study, among other topics, how the seasons affect plant growth, how agriculture depends on climate, and how weather helps spread or curb human diseases. For decades now, a faction have looked at how charged particles in the air, called ions, might alter our psyches as they wing in on the wind.

Explanations of the environment’s impact on us sometimes crash at the intersection of science and pseudoscience. The idea that electrically charged molecules affect humans has led to dubious cures like negative air-ionizing therapy. But recent, rigorous studies have hinted at compelling links between ions, physiology, and psychology. The collision of that work with the science of storms could bear a message of connection for us all.

Scientists first attempted to unweave the web between air ions—whose composition changes with weather and environment—and human mood in the mid 20th century, when ion-generating machines and ion counters became more standardized and available. Ions, natural or ginned up inside a device, are electrically charged particles: Negative ions have an extra electron, and positive ions are missing an electron. Positive ions get their spark when some force—like the scrape of air over land or shear from water droplets splashing—strips an electron from them. That electron goes on the rebound and attaches itself to a nearby oxygen molecule, which then becomes a negative ion.

In the wild, people encounter the greatest densities of negative air ions in pleasant, hydrated places and during summer months. Breaking ocean waves and falling water—dropping from the sky or flowing over a rock ledge—release a rash of negatives into the air. So do bolts of lightning. Positive ions—often associated with pollutant particles like smoke, smog, and dust—are more prevalent indoors, in urban areas, and in the winter. The leading edges of storms and hot, dry winds like the Santa Anas in California also blow them in.

Lightning struck like a strobe. I felt awakened, alive, engaged.

Medical doctor Daniel Silverman of New Orleans and Igho Kornblueh of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia were first to test whether the shifting tides of ions do anything to the human body or mind. Is either polarity good or bad, or are they both neutral? In 1957, they gave subjects 30-minute treatments with air ions from ion-generating devices.

During the treatment, Silverman and Kornblueh watched patients’ electrical brain activity on electroencephalograms. Their long, slow, alpha waves looked calm and relaxed when they were surrounded by negative ions, positive ones, or both at once (not exactly conclusive). Another research group later confirmed chilled-out brain activity and sharper perception, when they treated patients with negative air ions. Their results weren’t definitive, but three other studies in the ’50s and ’60s looked at how ions changed self-reported perceptions of comfort and restlessness. According to this research, some subjects felt negative feelings with positive ions, and some reported positive feelings with negative ions…

more…

http://nautil.us/issue/46/balance/the-strange-blissfulness-of-storms-rp

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Microwave Towers & Faster Downloads: The Hidden Health Impact of Wireless Communications

by Benjamin Nowland, New Dawn Waking Times

Imagine you arrive home after work to discover a new microwave antenna tower stationed at the edge of your backyard fence? How would you respond?

  1. If you’d had non-existent mobile phone reception for years prior (or if you were a techie ‘hooked on faster downloads’) then you might find reason to celebrate!
  2. You might respond as an ambivalent disempowered citizen, “I really wonder about those things but there isn’t much I can do about this anyway.”
  3. You may be in the growing group of empowered action-takers. You’ve either experienced microwave radiation sickness attributable to exposure or you’ve read books and articles on the topic which resonate with your own truth

Out of Sight Does Not Equal Out of Mind

Now forget the antennas in the backyard. Rather, that same day you arrived home from work telcos had erected a microwave antenna tower 300 metres from your residence. They paid someone rent to place it in a stealth location, a church steeple, behind a shop rooftop façade or on a water tower tucked out of public view behind parkland. Or it might have been located entirely visible, say next to a highway. We are already seeing so many of these towers that they no longer register. Our innate sensibility has often numbed to them in the same way we can numb to catastrophe or violence through a constant diet of Hollywood and TV news.

Telcos seeks to irradiate a large area (coverage) and increase data rate by:

  1. Multiple waveforms emitted (a variety of microwave frequencies generated and sent out through the ether via the antennas) – for instance the 700 MHz (0.7 GHz) band is highly penetrating (including through buildings) and is therefore especially effective used in conjunction with the 2600 MHz (2.6 GHz) band which has a high data rate (PENETRATION + HIGH DATA = HAPPY TELCO and customers). Keep in mind these frequencies are used to cook flesh. The microwave oven you dropped off at the recovery area of the rubbish tip the other week runs at 2.45 GHz.
  1. Turning up the ‘volume’ or microwave power density on the antenna array – in the same way we turn up the volume of our stereo. This is the same ‘invisible stuff’ emitted by your mobile device and WiFi. In the above example when the antenna tower was at the edge of your back fence (say 100 metres from your bedroom), you’d likely complain, “Not In My Back Yard!” When it is located 300 metres away and out of sight in council bushland there is no way for you to complain as you do not even know about it! Even if it is located on the side of a road you might not consider taking action, such is the distorted form of information passed on to the public (more on this later).

Distance is an important consideration per the Inverse Square Law for distance from source (of microwave radiation) – Intensity α 1/distance.2

If the antenna was at 100 metres distance then was moved to 300 metres, the intensity will be 1/9th that at 100 metres. However, what if the telco turned up the ‘volume’ of the antenna array at 300 metres to be 90 times higher than the antennas at 100 metres? Intensity would then = 1/9 x 90 = 10 times higher at 300 metres than at 100 metres. Most of us do not spend our evenings searching data on local antenna emission levels.

The Inverse Square Law applies similarly to devices. Many years ago I had a wireless emitting Telstra modem located underneath a couch I enjoyed lying on in the evening to read – not clever. I wondered why my sleep was so chaotic during that phase. I correlated to show the pre-bed ritual of a book on the couch was a contributor. I’ve since hardwired my Internet.

Transform your brain health by simply stretching out to arms-length and putting your phone on ‘speaker’ rather than pressing it to your ear and literally ‘cooking’ parts of your brain.

  1. Working with trajectory and strategic location – there is an overlay strategy to eliminate ‘black spots’. One element that can assist (and hinder) this strategy is trajectory. If in the above example the tower 100 metres from your bedroom is at 50 metres elevation per Figure 1 (note this is indicative software only) and you happen to live in a tenth floor apartment, then you could well be in the direct line of fire. If you were in a house on the ground floor the power density (or exposure levels) would not be as high. However, consider the ‘side lobes’ that are the diagonal high intensity lobes dependent on antenna design/type. There is a myth that you are ‘protected’ directly beneath an antenna array. Because of side lobes this is not the case, though you are less exposed than if you were directly in front of it.

Faster Data Rates PLEASE MR TELCO

The telcos suggest the market is requesting faster data rates and ‘eradication’ of mobile black spots. The suggestion is we want high-speed coverage everywhere.

Telcos tell us the public is demanding faster rates on their devices and that is why they need to build more towers and turn up the power density. Do you want to download ten videos simultaneously rather than just one? We are a misinformed public with minds etched by PR and advertising. We are told of the benefits of a wireless world such as convenient communications, improved work efficiency, and safety devices.

The law of polarity holds that wherever there are benefits we find shortcomings. We do not hear that in 2009 over 300,000 Swedes indicated they are detrimentally affected by electromagnetic radiation. We are not presented the stories of thousands of Australians experiencing anxiety, headaches, brain fog and even heart palpitations, lost in an unreceptive, outdated and often derisive medical system. We aren’t informed of the snake-oil industries that have sprung up to ‘service’ the desperate.

Presently ‘we’ as powerful individuals are not demanding faster downloads. There is a collective entity influencing and it can be difficult to create space to ‘see’. I switch on my phone for around 10-20 minutes per day. Not everyone can do this, and I may have a work-lifestyle that requires more connectivity in the future. Why not experiment? The act of experimenting is an act of questioning the status quo. How low can you go?

Am I Being Rattled by Microwaves?

For those who have been feeling ‘off’ for no apparent reason, with headaches, anxiety, a general ‘jitteriness’ and irritation, insomnia and perhaps more extreme symptoms such as tingling in the extremities, brain fog and palpitations, the answer may be YES. Microwave radiation exposure is not the only contributor, however it’s one of multiple environmental factors…

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About the Author

BENJAMIN NOWLAND (Honours Mechanical Engineer, Grad. Cert. Environmental Management, Cert. IV Training and Assessment, Certified Health Practitioner and Yoga Teacher) shares original perspectives on health and spirituality. Ben is the best-selling author of Playing GOD Biological and Spiritual Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation – a book created to stretch perceptions whilst easily digested by the householder. He has spent two decades exploring human potential, the infinite and eternal. Connect with Ben at: ben@dharamhouse.com.

Benjamin Nowland is the author of Playing GOD Biological and Spiritual Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation, a book for empowered action-takers in the community, health practitioners and for those experiencing symptoms. To obtain your copy, visit www.vividpublishing.com.au/playinggod/ or call Vivid Publishing on 08 9467 4143. For further information on Ben’s work, visit his website www.dharamhouse.com.

http://www.wakingtimes.com/2017/03/21/microwave-towers-faster-downloads-hidden-health-impact-wireless-communications/

WIKK WEB GURU