Wednesday, July 1, 2015

God Helmet Experiment

The God Helmet – Laboratory Apparatus

The God Helmet is a name given to a laboratory apparatus which was earlier known as `Koren Helmet’ after Stanley Koren of Laurentian University’s Neuroscience Department. This was created as per the specifications given by its director, Dr M.A.Persinger. Utilised as a research tool for investigating the brain’s role in religious and mystic experiences, the KoranHelmet is given the name `God Helmet’. Few of the journalists have given it this name when they realised the some had visions of God at the time of participating in Koren Helmet experiment and this name prevailed. It was developed to study creativity, religious experience as well as the effects of refined stimulation of the temporal lobes. Participants reported of `sensed presence’, when they wore the God helmet which brought about an awareness resulting in various TV documentaries and the device was used in Persinger’s study in the field of neurotheology, which is the study of the neural association of religions and spirituality.

Mystical Experiences & Altered States

When the apparatus is placed on the head of an experimental subject, it tends to generate a weak fluctuating magnetic fields that Persinger relates as `complex’, which are nearly as strong as the ones generated by a land line telephone handset or a hair dryer though much less than an ordinary refrigerator magnet and almost a million times weaker than transcranial magnetic stimulation. It has been reported by Persinger that several subjects have been recounted on `mystical experiences and altered states at the time of wearing the God Helmet.

Foundation of this theoryhas been criticised in the scientific press, academics, anecdotal reports by journals and documentarists and have been mixed with several effects reported by Persinger are not yet independently duplicated. An attempt of duplication published in the scientific literature had indicated a failure to reproduce Persinger’s effect. It was proposed by authors that the suggestibility of participants, improper blinding of participants or eccentric methodology could clarify the results of Persinger. Persinger debates that the replication was flawed technically though the researcher have been firm by their replication.

Complex Magnetic Signals to Head

Recently other researchers have published a replication of one God Helmet experiment. The Koren Helmet applies complex magnetic signals to the head of the one wearing it and the field do not work by inducing current in the brain. There are patterns which have information as well as magnetic fields which tend to appear around technical activity in the brain that picks it up.

The Koren Helmet is said to be connected to a PC computer via a black box which cycles the signals via four coils on each side of the head, above the place from the temporal lobes of the brain that meet the parietal lobes. This is that part of the brain which researchers feel is the source of spiritual as well as religious experience connection.The sessions are performed in an Acoustic Chamber which is totally silent.

 A big part of the temporal lobes on-going activity is devoted to monitoring ambient sound and the temporal lobes are said to be the source of religious and mystic experience. Silence aids a great deal in creating them in the lab. The same chamber also tends to have layer of electromagnetic insulation so that the ambient energy released from the lab equipment, cell phone towers as well as computer monitor is screened out. Due to the magnetic fields that tend to pass through this screen, the God Helmet research has reached some interesting discoveries with regards to magnetic field of the earth

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