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"BIONS", LEUKOCYTES, AND "FLOATERS"

1999 William J. Beaty

> When we look at a bright sky, at white snow or an electric bulb, it is
> possible to see undistinguished whitish "dots" moving chaotically.
> What's that? Dust? If so, why their movement does not depend directly
> upon the motion of the air (upon the wind)? And why do we see these
> "dots" only in the case of special focusing of the eyes?

If "orgone bions" of Wilhelm Reich actually do exist, and if they dance in
the air, then they will be very difficult to observe.  This is not because
we cannot see them.  This is because we also see the White Blood Cells
(Leukocytes) of the retinal blood vessels which dance and gyrate, and
leave little V-shaped wakes as they move through the tortuous capillaries
in front of our retinas. 

While I was still a student, I worked as a Research Assistant at the
Center for Visual Science in Rochester, NY.  At one point I visited a
vision research laboratory in Boston MA, where I had an opportunity to
observe a device which was used to make these moving leukocytes VERY
visible.  It was a de-focused laser which was aimed into an eyepiece.  It
was violet in color, with a frequency chosen that is absorbed by
hemocytes.  When I looked into this eyepiece, I saw a uniformly
illuminated field of light, of violet-white color.  In this field I saw
several hundred moving yellow dots. If I recall correctly, each dot seemed
to possess a V-shaped "wake" like a speeding boat makes upon the water.  
(this wake supposedly comes from stimulation of the retina's edge-detector
neural computation, and all moving objects we can see will always have 
these "wakes.")

The moving-dots effect is called "Scheerer's phenomenon".  The dots are
leukocytes which move along through the blood-filled capillaries.  I
noticed that the velocity of all of these dots was varying in synchronism
with my heartbeat.  As my blood pressure changed during each heartbeat,
the dots moved fast and slow.  The moving dots seemed to wander randomly,
yet many of them executed a typical maneuver: a wiggling, sinusoidal
trajectory.  Apparently there are many capillaries on the retina which
have the shape of a snake, a sine-wave, and when a leukocyte travels
through that channel, it executes a sinusoidal "wiggle"  motion.  The
capillaries are said to be normally invisible because they are full of
hemocytes (red blood cells), and these hemocytes are too close to each
other, and too far away from the retina to create individual moving
shadows.  Therefore, like the capillaries themselves, our retinas "edit"
the blood cells out the view perceived by our brains.  On the other hand,
the leukocytes (White blood cells) are large, and they act like gaps in
the columns of blood which fill the capillaries.  These "moving holes" in
the blood are made visible whenever we stare at a uniformly illuminated
surface. Even better, stare at a point-source illuminator (laser, or light
passed through a single glass fiber) which has been extremely de-focused
by a powerful lens (such as a telescope eyepiece.)  Doing so is an
improvement, since as a result, the light rays behave as parallel lines at
the place where they strike the retina.  This makes the shadows of the
leukocytes become very sharp.  (They actually will be ring-like
diffraction patterns.)  If instead we stare at the blue sky, then the
light rays behave as "diffuse light" at the location where they strike the
retina, and the shadows of the leukocytes will be fuzzier and more
difficult to notice.

Do airborne "bions" exist?  I do not know, because if they do, they would
be almost impossible to see, because we observe them through a crowd of
wiggling leukocytes.  Obviously, this fact can be used by skeptics to
dismiss reports of observed Bions.

I suspect that the "bions" in the brightly lit sky do not exist, and we
are just seeing retinal leukocytes.  But this does not mean that, in other
situations (in darkness, for example, where no shadows are projected on
the retina), visual observation of "bions" are not accurate.


SOME OTHER MUSINGS:

When I am observing the moving dots, I can concentrate my attention upon
one small region, and I notice something interesting.  A moving dot will
repeatedly pass through the same region, and it always takes the same
path.  This clearly is not random.  Instead, a row of dots is marching
along a single "highway", and the shape of the "highway"  determines the
path. 

Sometimes a sudden motion of my body causes the wiggling dots in the blue
sky to become very visible.  Perhaps when I suddenly lay down upon the
ground? Or suddenly rise from a chair?  For a few moments, my entire field
of vision becomes filled with the tiny moving dots , and it is very
obvious that the speed of all of them is synchronized with my heartbeat. 
The whole population of dots moves fast-slow-fast-slow-fast.  Then it
vanishes again.  I ascribe this event to sudden rises of blood pressure in
the capillaries of the retina. 

If I close one eye, de-focus and relax the other, then if I move my head,
the pattern of the dots follows my head movements, and it does not remain
stable in the outside world.  The pattern of dots is associated with the
interior of my eye.

A separate issue: the so-called "floaters".  These are detritus in the
vitreous humor; the liquid adjacent to the retina.  An old article in
Scientific American magazine states that they are probably composed of
stacks of red blood cells connected together.

   SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, in The Amateur Scientist:
   "Floaters" in the eye,  1982 April, pg 150,    1982 September, pg 206 

As a child I often observed these "floaters."  They appear much larger
than the moving leukocyte-dots in the capillaries.  They appear as
ringlike bright/dark patterns, although some "floaters" are huge and
misshapen.  They almost look like amoebas viewed through a microscope.  If
I move my eyes quickly for a moment, and then keep still, the "floaters" 
will move upwards, stop, and then drift downwards.  They follow the
motions of my eyeball.  They are the same whether I view them against the
sky or against a sheet of bright colored paper. They are part of my eye,
they follow the motions of my eyeball, and obviously do not exist in the
outside world.

There is no question in my mind that these entopic phenomena are blood
cells in the capillaries or tiny objects in the vitreous humor. After all,
Nature has designed the human eye in a silly way: with blood vessels
running across the surface of the retina, blocking the light!  Also, the
older we grow, the more "floaters" seem to appear.  There is an
accumulation of debris in the liquid within the eye.

The researcher who wishes to search for "bions" should take time to learn
the characteristics of these moving blood cells very well.  We must learn
to ignore them, in the same way that a biologist ignores the images of the
eyelashes and the moisture patterns of the cornea when looking into a
microscope. 

Also, we must learn to recognize mysterious objects which do NOT resemble
nor behave like the "wiggling" blood cells and the "floaters."  If there
are mysteries in the world, and if they vaguely resemble the white blood
cells or the "floaters", then the skeptic will wrongly ignore them, while
the openminded and perceptive researcher will perhaps discover something
important.

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