Masaru Emoto Pseudoscience

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I’ll spare you my ramblings on Dr. Masaru Emoto and let someone else speak about him.

From http://www.is-masaru-emoto-for-real.com/

After the lengthy review of Emoto’s research methods and results, I have come to believe that Dr. Emoto is offering pseudoscience to the masses in the guise of defensible research. *Only time and review by others will tell if there is any truth at the heart of Mr. Emoto’s claims, as Emoto himself thoroughly believes in his findings but does not value the scientific method or community. What is truly fearsome is the great numbers of people that accept his words as proven facts without looking deeper to find out if his claims are truly justified. While I respect Dr. Emoto’s desire to save the Earth’s water from contamination and pollution, unless he can produce a scientific paper and get it published in a scientific journal, I believe that he will continue to be ignored by the scientific community, and his claims will never be soundly proved or disproved.

Kristopher Setchfield, BA, Health Science
Natural Science Department
Castleton State College, Vermont
December 20, 2005

*He still has not published peer reviewed experiment results in a reputable scientific journal. His one claim to “peer reviewed” was submitted as a “photo essay” – not as experiment results submission. And that was back before 2004 – lots of claims, no publication. No results repeated and verified. No double blind studies. Why is that Mr. Emoto?

And for people who think I’m being hard on him or close-minded – go ahead and Google his name. You might notice a whole slew of websites selling stuff – stickers, water, seminars, certificates – stuff. And here or there you’ll find a couple people like me speaking out. Feed the money machine – it’s ok – because while you’re feeding it, there are real discoveries being made within real science. And THAT is what matters.

ADDED FEBRUARY 2009:

Ok, so maybe I WON’T spare you my ramblings on Emoto. His “research” on water crystals pisses me off to no end for a number of reasons. Here are some of them:

  1. When he first announced his “research” it was heralded that he was “published in a peer reviewed journal”. This surprised me. I read the entry. First of all it was submitted as a “photo essay” which bypassed any editorial review before inclusion, it was NOT printed as a scientific experiment submission. He was VERY misleading by seeming to infer that his work had been accepted as an actual science experiment peer reviewed. Second, it was not a mainstream journal, it was an Alternative journal, not one with a strong mainstream reputation. Some people seem to think that’s because his findings would not be accepted by mainstream science because it’s so cutting edge, when in fact it was not accepted by a mainstream journal because there was NOTHING TO ACCEPT. It was just a photo essay. What is a “photo essay”? Just that, photos and thoughts.
  2. Part of his experiments are to label water that is played different styles of music. Then it’s showed that “heavy metal” music has gross looking crystals, while water that was played classical music is nice and pretty. Having worked in music and audio full time my entire life, I also find this offensive. There is nothing inherent in the music vibrations, it is the receiver that puts meaning into the sounds. The water does not have an opinion on what music is “good” or “bad”. He does the same with words like “hate” and “love”. Again, these are just words. It is US that put the meaning to them. Water does not have an opinion on these matters. What Emoto is inferring is that there is good and bad that can be detected by water – but he has not performed any reproducible experiments to show this is true.
  3. He’s making money off of his claims. In America it’s mainly from the New Age and New Thought segments. If you are an “Emoto supporter” – I would say there’s a very good chance you are “New Age” or “New Thought”, or if you don’t like those labels, then I would guess that you might also be interested in things like Chakras, Out of Body Experiences, Past Lives, etc. I am pointing this out because these groups have been targeted to host Emoto workshops and to sell products to. There are not targeted because they are open minded and on the forefront of progressive thought; they are targeted because they usually have no understanding of the Scientific Method (even though the word “science” might be used a lot in those circles, especially in the context of religion). In other words, these groups do not understand that his work is bullshit.
  4. I have personally seen people taught to purify water with their minds. And they would spend hours staring at glasses of water to practice purification. This was a step in learning how to “manifest”. A lot of money changes hands in these areas and a lot of time is being wasted on these pursuits.

What would appease me? To have Emoto have his original claims published in a mainstream journal and his experiments duplicated by others in a double blind study environment. In other words: For him to actually do what he infers he can do. But he won’t. Why? Because the crystals are chosen. It’s so silly I can’t believe it.

If you are still not understanding this let me explain it one more way. What Emoto does is similiar to this: Send me two pictures of two people you know. One of them you love very much and the other one  you hate. I will tape them to glasses of water then take pictures of the crystals after I have frozen it. I will take pictures of the crystals. The glass with the photo of the person  you love will show a photo of a beautiful crystal, the other will show a gross and ugly crystal. Of course, I will have to know which person is which ahead of time. And I will choose the crystals myself from dozens of photos to get the results you want.

It would be funny if he weren’t getting so much money from people and leading people down paths that waste a lot of precious time…

Why is it a big deal to me? I worked for a “mind science” institution for many years and believed all this stuff until someone showed me what science actually was. Fringe groups like the Ramtha followers gravitate to this stuff like bees to honey. I have friends who also used to be in Ramtha. It’s a very ugly thing when  you start to think for yourself and leave those groups. Emoto’s is just one of many people profiteering off misinformation in the sciences to a naive and well-meaning audience. And that misinformation can start people down a very dark road. That’s why it’s a big deal to me.

8 thoughts on “Masaru Emoto Pseudoscience

  1. Hi,

    I totally agree with your words 🙂 I have been saying the same thing to my friends ever since I read about Dr. Masaru Emoto�s experiments.

    he is actually coming to my city, Barcelona in the next few days. He will be charging 50 Euros per person just for attending the so called “conference”….

  2. Ok this Kristopher seem more like a quack. He said he was going to try the same experiments on his web page you can find it here: http://www.is-masaru-emoto-for-real.com/

    Kristopher did not show us any photos of the same type for his analysis but rather cheap graphics diagrams. After the guy claims he is excited and interested in Emoto’s work and that he is going to do the same experiment the guy just rants and complains trying to take words and drive it into us as the only reference that would make all his work considered unreal. It may be that since Emoto might have skipped some methods it seems like Kristopher gave up on the project and went straight to a conclusion.

    Kristopher is LESS credible what a joke… and WHO pays him to pretend to reproduce the research? out of his own pocket? People are a lot more smarter than these cheesy debunkers. My conclusion Kristopher just wasted our time.

  3. In regards to the second comment:

    Having “skipped some methods” is absolutely critical. You seem to have missed the point completely. “Dr” Emoto is not a scientist and does not follow any scientific principles to come to his conclusions. His experiments are open to observer bias and other contaminants.

    It is besides the point whether Kristopher has done the experiments himself or not as he was making an analysis of Emoto’s methods which are flawed.

    You have not demonstrated how Kristopher is less credible, you are just ranting.

    The James Randi Foundation has informed Emoto of the one million dollar prize to do his experiments, double blinded with no response. He as is everybody is interested in money but has not responded. Perhaps he is not confident in real scientific experiments.

  4. Here is a wikipedia page that has an overview of the Scientific Method:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

    Would recommend reading that page in detail, but here are two excerpts:

    Peer review evaluation

    Scientific journals use a process of peer review, in which scientists’ manuscripts are submitted by editors of scientific journals to (usually one to three) fellow (usually anonymous) scientists familiar with the field for evaluation. The referees may or may not recommend publication, publication with suggested modifications, or, sometimes, publication in another journal. This serves to keep the scientific literature free of unscientific or crackpot work, helps to cut down on obvious errors, and generally otherwise improve the quality of the scientific literature.

    Documentation and replication

    Main article: Reproducibility

    Sometimes experimenters may make systematic errors during their experiments, unconsciously veer from the scientific method (Pathological science) for various reasons, or, in rare cases, deliberately falsify their results. Consequently, it is a common practice for other scientists to attempt to repeat the experiments in order to duplicate the results, thus further validating the hypothesis.

  5. I watched this movie with an open mind and was hoping it wouldn’t be like “what the %$#@ do we know”, and at the end I was disappointed to see a ridiculous propagandized message… From a scientific standpoint, the idea that water assumes a 6 point star formation of crystals, and responds negatively/chaotically to the word “Hitler” is absurd. I was watching this movie with a great deal of respect up until that point and I realized the UN subcontext, the pro Israeli message, etc. and this is just another washed up (in water perhaps) political brainwashing that could have been such a powerful educational film. It’s sad that these movies actually influence people in their lives… Alex Jones, David Icke, all the 9/11 movies with partial truths hidden by political agendas… Don’t you people see that you could actually promote a positive constructive message if you stuck to 100% facts and proven truths? Politics are what divide man, not the quality of our water… Drop the religious BS and get with the facts. This movie gets a D minus. Started off good, but then used the introductions and beginning to present a political and religious statement without most viewers even noticing, but rather giving in and believing this nonsense. Let’s see the proof that writing the word Hitler on a glass of water will make the water worse off. If my name happens to be Adolph, does that mean I’m cursed for life too? This movie almost had me believing this nonsense! Why do they allow propaganda like this to be released? I don’t even know what they were trying to convey, but when they stated the events of Jesus and so on to be facts, I started getting more suspicious…

    Watch the movie for yourself, and if you’re religious (delusional) don’t pay any attention to this comment. If you’re an intelligent human being who questions what others try to force them to believe, watch the movie again and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.

    -Anonymous

  6. PP Control – I am in agreement with your comments, and I very much appreciate how you point out this is not just a silly thing, it does have political overtones to it which are indeed sinister.

    Which movie are you referring to?

  7. What about thunder? That is one of the harshest sounds out there, and it is very closely linked to water. In fact I would say that most water on earth has probably been pretty close to thunder before, is all water therefore damaged?

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