Experimenting with Sound and Frequency:

Way back in 1975, at the grand old age of 16, I bought myself my first keyboard synthesiser; a humble mono, analogue ARP, for the princely sum of £480. This synthesiser basically comprised of a row of slide controls with different functions, which you could manipulate and literally create raw sounds from an inaudibly high sin wave right down to bone shaking, raspy low-frequency oscillations.

Before very long, I was doing my own experiments with frequencies and vibration; I didn't know where I was going with it, I was not making notes of which frequency did what; I was just having fun doing it. I learned that I could 'tune in' to the frequency of the room and effectively turn the entire room into a kind of giant speaker where, without having it particularly loud, I had no perception of where the sound was emanating from but was 'bathed' completely in the sound, which filled the room.

I learned that certain frequencies could certainly rattle the windows but, thankfully, I never shattered the glass. I learned that low frequencies could be felt in, for example, the pit of the stomach, whereas higher frequencies felt like they were coming from within the head, for example; something that singing instructors will often teach to enable loud projection of the voice.

I also learned that if you play a pure sine wave in one ear and an identical sine wave in the other ear (you need to use headphones for this one), then you will hear a single sound. However, as you begin to alter the pitch of the sine wave in one ear, you will begin to hear 'binaural beats' - a rogue frequency - that shortens (speeds up) as the difference between the frequencies in each ear get further apart. This beating is an illusion, it does not exist in itself; if you only listen to the sound in either ear, there is no beat. All you have done is play a pure sine wave in each ear and the two hemispheres of our brains are trying to synchronise the difference between them. This is the basis of what has come to be known as 'Hemi-Syncing' (synchronisation of the two hemispheres of the brain), believed to aid brain functioning: alertness, relaxation, focus etc. The difference between the frequencies is said to 'entrain' the brain towards that frequency, e.g., 410hz - 400hz=10hz @ alpha wave. If you use a number of core frequencies and the difference between each is accurate, then some rather interesting experiences can be had in the head.

My most profound experience of this was during a visit to a mind-body-spirit festival in the early 1980s. A man was demonstrating the effects by use of a humble cassette deck. He played a sine wave into one ear and, the only way I can describe the effect on the instant that he introduced the different frequency into my other ear, is that it was as if someone had pulled the skin on my forehead just above my nose, stretched it out like a rubber band about a foot in front of me, twisted it 180 degrees and then let it twang back and slap me on the forehead - a very physical experience. I later came to understand this as being a reaction in my pineal gland - the so-called third eye. This led to many further experiments of my own. From this it is not too far a leap for me to believe that we generate many other illusory experiences in our heads, based upon the sensory frequencies that arrive in our brains - including 3D TV, which is only displayed in two dimensions but exploits our binocular vision to create a 3D effect.

What I am saying is that, from my very own personal experience, I had an appreciation of sound frequencies and their effect upon the body and external space.

When later, I saw that you could stretch a membrane, sprinkled with sand or salt (or even cornstarch mixed with water) across a loudspeaker and, by changing the pitch, could change the intricate patterns that the sand, salt or water 'danced' to, I was fascinated but it seemed little more than a party trick until, many years later, I saw that, in the artwork of some ancient civilisations, some very similar intricate patterns had long since been shown to have been known. How could this be? These civilisations did not have synthesisers and speakers. I guess I would have put this down to a coincidence and left it at that, making no meaning of it at all.

There are many conjectures made about the so-called symbols of power left around on our planet and also conspiracy theories; they are largely ridiculed and dismissed and, whilst there are also a lot of 'psychic' and mystic cranks and quacks, making all sorts of outlandish claims about all kinds of things for their own motives, there is a danger of throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Of course, there will be those who would suggest that continuing to dismiss these matters is precisely what those in power would want, in order to maintain control of the masses. However, there are too many situations of too much 'coincidence,' for there not to be something in some of it: the data and symbols may well be there for our brains to decode; messages for us to learn from and we have been asleep and oblivious for so long, fed lies by those in power, who are either profoundly ignorant or, more likely, deeply complicit.

When I began exploring subatomic physics in 1984 (initially introduced by Fritjof Capra's, The Tao of Physics), the whole notion of sound, light and frequency and their relationship to the electromagnetic spectrum was just a natural extension of what I already knew. If we can demonstrate that particles will dance into different patterns depending on the particular (!) sound frequencies in their presence (sound and electromagnetic waves can be visibly seen when particles of sand or iron filings are placed on a vibrating or magnetised surface respectively), then it is not too much of a leap to understand that (as physicists will tell you), matter is mostly filled with empty space and exists due to almost completely empty particles vibrating at a frequency which brings them into solidity. If all solid objects are merely particles oscillating in space, then we too are no different; our bodies too are only solid because of the frequencies at which they oscillate. Remember this.

As you may be aware, visible light inhabits a very narrow portion of the entire electromagnetic spectrum. Therefore, what we can see is a very narrow band of 'reality'. Higher resonant frequencies, including the very obvious radio waves, cannot be picked up by our own bodily 'antenna', but they surround us daily and we can pick up such frequencies if we employ suitable apparatus - a radio. There are many other resonant frequencies surrounding us that we have no conscious awareness of.

I later heard of an observation that, in some prehistoric caves, the areas with the most significant wall paintings were often those where the resonant frequency in the space was 'tuned' to the male baritone voice. I did not know the meaning of this; it was possible that some form of chanting or OMing was being done by the ancients whilst paintings were either being created or stories were being revealed through them. I could certainly appreciate that it was possible that the cave dwellers were gaining some kind of enjoyment through experiencing being 'bathed' in sound. As technology advanced, I would get into the art of sampling; making digital recordings of extracts of sounds/songs, which then could be played back at different pitches to create new tunes. In those days (before technology had got to grips with interpolating), there was a direct correlation between pitch and playback speed: raise the pitch by an octave, it halved the playback duration and vice versa. You could keep a sound playing by looping it. Theoretically, you could record an entire spoken book and play it back within, say, one second, at a very high pitch, thereby compressing real time into a high-frequency (this, of course, would be if you could actually afford the amount of memory that it would have taken to have done this). This led to all of the awful obligatory dog barking tunes and suchlike, but also led to entire symphonies, where the differing pitches were being made up of various speeds of the same narrative or instrument being played back accordingly. The point being made here is that we begin to see that we could compress or elongate time; the entire history of the universe could therefore be played back as a frequency, as fast or slow as you like, with all the information available for anyone operating at the right frequency themselves to be able to decode it. Are you getting this?

These days, of course, sampling is such that you can raise the pitch and keep the speed the same or increase the speed and keep the pitch the same or any combination of speeding or slowing duration, raising or lowering pitch. Memory storage is now so cheap by comparison that it would cost next to nothing to record as many books as you liked and play them back in a microsecond. Of course you would not be able to comprehend them at high speed, but the fact is that the complexity of what is being said is all happening within that short period of time and, if you were to accelerate yourself then it is plausible, in relativity theory, to be possible for the book to appear audible to you at real-time pace, relative to yourself.

Before long, we would be buying DVDs of films that had hours of completed footage stored simultaneously on one disc and the only thing that made it past, present or future was where the laser was reading at the time - and displaying it onscreen. Once we had watched it all, we could watch again. The future can become the past, over and over. If the storage device is large enough, that old universe could surely avail itself to us multiple times. Perhaps it always has been this way?

So, now we have computers able to encode and decode complex data in binary form. We interface with programs to perform functions and play games. These have a creator or two. Do the characters in the games have intelligence? If they did, would they consider their creator to be God? The data exists in the visible form we see it - in two dimensions - only at the point at which we observe it on the screen. For the rest of the time it exists as a stream of electrons - ones and zeros in cyberspace or stored in a data device. We need the apparatus to decode and display the data in some form or other. This is how we decode the computer universe - bit by bit.

As above; so below. Is this how we are decoding the wider universe? We have our brains: our own memory storage systems in a central processor - fed by a stream of...electrons. We are not binary code; we are the quaternary code of DNA, which has all the information to reproduce itself in three dimensions. What if we too are merely sophisticated Sims characters, going about our programmed duties under the illusion of free will? Our 'God' may be merely another programmer who themselves are perhaps just programs run by programs...And it's 'turtles all the way down.'

Trying to Understand Force Fields, Waves and Frequency

As above; so below. Let us consider the Sun and the Earth; two massive heavenly bodies experiencing some kind of attraction between each other, which we have come to know as gravity, causing the smaller Earth to orbit around the huge Sun. If we were to replace the Sun and the Earth with a proton and an electron respectively, at this subatomic level, the attraction between them causing the tiny electron to orbit around the gigantic proton is not gravity but electromagnetic force. This is the remarkable core energy field - travelling at the speed of light - which 'fills' the 'empty' space between all sub atomic bodies - and is released so powerfully in both nuclear fission and fusion.

Yet this energy occurs as a dynamic relationship between bodies. If there were only one gigantic star and no other heavenly bodies in the universe, it could be postulated that there would be nothing for the force to act between; there would be truly nothing filling the void, but as soon as we introduce a single other body, then there is a force or attraction between them; the empty void is now filled with this force field. As with light, radio and x-rays, gravity could be considered as simply a larger waveform within the electromagnetic spectrum.

In order to provide some indication of scale between these bodies and the relative emptiness that we are considering, I have unashamedly reworded this explanation by Frank Close: The dot at the end of this sentence contains something in the region of 100 billion atoms of carbon (well, it would if it were actually printed). To see one of these atoms with the naked eye, we would need to magnify the dot to 100 metres across. But to see the nucleus at the centre of the atom, we would need the dot to be enlarged to 10,000 km (as big as the Earth from pole to pole). If we travelled from the centre of the atom, the outer edge of the proton is 1/10,000th of the distance away from the electron (itself one 10 millionth of the size of the atom), orbiting it.

It is the immensely rapid and 'alive' outer boundary (rather like the jagged teeth of a rotating circular saw - which conveys a blurred but 'solid' edge), which the tiny electron marks in its orbit around its giant nucleus (a proton for example - itself made up of even tinier, oscillating quarks), and their inherent electric force field, which delineates the intangible yet 'solid' edge of an atom. This is what makes matter appear solid, despite all its empty space, when oppositely charged atoms are attracted together to form mass. Just as we cannot safely pass our fingers through a circular saw, we cannot pass our fingers through another piece of matter [*]. Therefore, we cannot actually touch anything else; we can only hover an atom's breadth away from an adjacent object and what we experience as touch is the result of our respective 'gravitational' forces impacting upon each other.

[*] Oddly, super-cooled liquid helium is said to have zero viscosity and will pass through its container at a molecular level.