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   “Message” from Crystals of Water: Scientifically NOT Proved!

Instituto de Física da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP.



Dr. Masaru Emoto is a well-known Japanese researcher of the influence of thoughts and feelings on the physical reality. He states that the crystalline structure of water molecules are influenced by the “energy of vibration” from thoughts, feelings, acts and even words and music [1,2].

This subject was analyzed by Kardec. In a footnote related to the 33rd question of The Spirits’ Book [3], Kardec said that the action of magnetism, directed by human will, makes the water magnetized or fluidified. In this process, water acquires different properties and, in certain cases, may be used as medicine for the treatment of several sicknesses.

Therefore, it is not being questioned our certainty, as spiritists, about the possibility of water to adsorb spiritist fluids from the ambient or directed to it by humans. We question the statement that “the phenomenon of adsorption of fluids by the water was scientifically proved”. In fact, in a real scientific point of view, it is not true and we shall explain the reasons as follows.

According to Dr. Emoto [1], the emission of thoughts and feelings towards a given sample of water; the submission of a portion of water to some kind of music or sound; or the gluing of a label containing a given word on a flask with water; will make the sample of water absorb a different kind of “energy” related to the moral value corresponding to the thought, the feeling, the sound or the word in question. This could be verified through the process of crystallization, where the water molecules form three-dimensional structures when passing from the liquid to the solid state, as happens with small pieces of snow. In the case of good thoughts, feelings, sounds or words, the crystalline structures are symmetric and beautiful (see, for example, the homepage of ref. [2]) and, otherwise, the structures are amorphous, possessing a bad sight [2].

We are not the first to question the scientific characteristic of Dr. Emoto’s research. There is a Brazilian homepage [4] which says that “the Dr. Emoto’s experiments have not been endorsed by Science, but rather by mysticism. They belong to what is commonly called as pseudoscience or not-science."1 It means that Dr. Emoto’s research does not satisfy the characteristics of universality and reproducibility usually present in all scientific research. The authors of the homepage [4] alert that people who are not used to analyze what they read may think that it is enough “to write lovely words in unclean water and use it to drink or to cook ...”1 [4]. Despite the fact that Dr. Emoto does not suggest this kind of application of water, there is no guarantee that it can not occur.

We have sent an e-mail to Dr. Emoto asking him about the publication of a scientific paper in a “peer reviewed” scientific journal. His wife gently answered the e-mail saying that she agrees with the importance of such a publication but it has not been done yet. That is an important reason to consider that Dr. Emoto’s results on research with crystalline water and its relation to the thoughts and feelings can not be considered as scientifically proved.

In order to give a better idea to the reader about when a given research is or is not scientifically proved, we shall present the main steps needed for any type of research to be considered as that. When the scientific community performs the same experiments related to a given research and verifies the same results, we can say that they are scientifically proved. The first step towards the scientific proof of any research is the publication of a scientific article (a scientific paper), about the research, in a “peer reviewed” scientific journal. It is very important because it is the only way to let the scientific community know about the research. The editorial method of publication in a scientific journal selects the papers whose research was performed in accordance to the standard rules followed by the scientific community. It prevents the scientific community from reading non-scientific papers and, therefore, avoids the lost of time and money (we should be aware that most scientific research is sponsored by public sources of money. So, the responsibility of the researchers in spending time and money on scientific activities is very important.). Also, the expression “peer reviewed” means that every paper submitted for publication in a scientific journal is sent to one or more researchers, specialists in the field of the paper, who make a critical reading of the paper, verifying several criteria as if the research was done correctly, if any detail was forgotten, if the research has not been done previously (to avoid repetitions), if the bibliography is correct, etc. So, that is the reason why the publication of a paper in a scientific journal is the first step towards the consideration of a given research as scientifically proved.

On the other hand, we can use the spiritist criterion of judiciousness to analyze one of the results of Dr. Emoto’s research. Let us think about the following example. Consider the experiment of putting a label on a flask containing some water. Let us choose the word HITTLER. This word was used by Dr. Emoto in some of his examples [1]. To most people, the word HITTLER brings the terrible actions of Nazism to memory so, to them, they are bad thoughts and feelings. Nevertheless, there are some people whose name or surname possesses the word HITTLER and these people are not, necessarily, bad. Imagine that we approximate the flask containing water with the label written HITTLER to the mother of one of those persons whose name is HITTLER. This mother will vibrate love as soon as she reads the label. So, we expect the crystalline water to be beautiful. But Dr. Emoto said that the word alone is capable to produce a bad amorphous shape in the sample of water. That is the point where we think Dr.  Emoto’s research is wrong. A simple sequence of letters is not capable of producing vibrations. Only spirits can vibrate thoughts and feelings. The conclusion that a word influences the process of crystallization of a sample of water is not in accordance to the Spiritist Doctrine.

We conclude this paper, stating that the influence on the shape of the crystalline structures of water by the vibrations of thoughts and feelings cannot be considered as scientifically proven. It does not mean that water cannot absorb spiritual fluids. We cannot claim that Science has accepted Dr. Emoto’s research as something scientifically proved. We respect Dr. Emoto’s work and his main motivation for the preservation of pure water in our planet. However, his research must be published in a scientific journal in order to be acknowledged by the scientific community. The publication of Dr. Emoto’s research in a book is very weak, in the scientific point of view because the publication of a book does not requires the process of “peer reviewing”, commonly used in the scientific journals. The scientific community gives more attention to the contents of scientific text-books (what is not the case of Dr. Emoto’s books) and scientific journals.

            It is timely to remember the words of the Spirit Erastes in item 230 of The Mediums’ Book {5}: “Remember that it is better to repudiate a dozen truths than to admit a single error”.

1 Our translation from the original in Portuguese. <back>


[1] M. Emoto, The Message from Water, Vol. I, Ed. Hado Kyoiku Sha, (1999). <back>

[2]  e <back>

[3] A. Kardec, The Spirits’ Book, FEB, 6th Edition (1996). <back>

[4] <back>

[5] A. Kardec, The Mediums’ Book. FEB, 2nd Edition (1986) <back>
Source: The Spiritist Messenger, 13th Year, Number 59, February 2005