Delta Influences – Biophotonics
My forthcoming novel, Delta Function, deals with a distant future where humanity exists in scattered pockets throughout the galaxy, each exiled community totally different from the last. As a science fiction author a major part of my writing process is the extrapolation of existing scientific theories. In this series of articles I will examine some of the ideas central to Delta Function’s narrative, starting here with biophotonics, a term of my own invention.
In order to explain biophotonics, I must first familiarise you with the concept that DNA emits electromagnetic radiation; it has an ‘ultra-weak’ photonic output. Visible and invisible light is made up of photons – light particles. For us to see anything, the light that our eyes and minds process must contain energy and information, if all light contains information, then the ‘ultra-weak’ photonic output of our own DNA must contain information too.
If we wish to ‘see’ ultraviolet or infrared light, we employ technological processes to achieve our desires. Therefore, if it is the invisible information contained within the cells of organic organisms that we wish to observe, then an idiosyncratic technique must be employed to achieve that end.
A great deal of research has been conducted into the sophisticated pharmaceutical knowledge base found in geographically remote tribal peoples. Take, for example, the shamanic practitioners of Western Amazonian. When questioned as to the source of their medicinal plant knowledge, they explained that, whilst under the hallucinogenic influence of ayahuasca, the medicinal uses of the jungle flora were revealed to them.
A combination of the two ideas – cellular photonic output, and the psychoactively enabled ability to interpret that output’s information, creates, for me, a story-vehicle with great potential. The idea that every living organism is projecting its chemical, and perhaps even its historical journey for the properly attuned to discover, is a wonderful thought to toy with.
The photonic output of DNA is an established, documented scientific fact, the ability to see it under the influence of dimethyltryptamine is not. But given the complexity of tribal medicinal knowledge, and the unlikely combination of geographically and genetically disparate plants into chemically beneficial compounds, what other explanation could there be for the astonishingly effective results of the shamans’ pharmaceutical concoctions? The ‘trial and error’ explanation holds no water with me.
When I thought to include a fictionalised version of these two convergent ideas in my novel, I applied the concept to human beings. What if, given the correct chemicals and technology, we could ‘read’ a person’s biological story? Perhaps, using a process of amplification, a suitably prepared observer might be able to see into the genetic past of our race. We might be able to trace our exact evolutionary lineage all the way back to the Precambrian, and, if we take the idea to an extreme conclusion, perhaps we might be able to divine the origins of life on this planet, verify panspermia or disprove the existence of God.
Biophotonics is a product of my imagination, but I find the science behind the fiction utterly fascinating. Could some of the fundamental questions of existence be answered by imbibing hallucinogenic compounds? Could those making regular recreational use of DMT, ketamine, LSD and mescaline really be connecting with a fountain of knowledge unknown to the uninitiated? I hope so.
In my next post, I’ll be looking at human cloning and some of the puzzling identity paradoxes that it might engender, thanks for reading, Dom Carter.
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