(here‘s an HD version for the video)
Watch this and expand your consciousness… or not! Bias notice: I am highly suspicious of all New Age movements and of conspiracy theories in general. My main objection to both is that they simply replace one authoritative discourse about the world (the one you learn about in your History classes and hear about on the news) with their own authoritative discourse about salvation or secret societies that run the world.
Another objection: simply because the facts fit the premise doesn’t automatically validate the premise and certainly doesn’t validate the conclusion. For example, if I come home from work and my dog is gone I can postulate that aliens abducted him or that he became some sort of Dog-Messiah and flew up to Dog-Heaven. Yet it’s a simple explanation (I forgot the patio door cracked and he simply ran away) that makes the most sense, regardless of how many other alternative theories I can come up with. A lot of conspiracy theories and New Age pseudo-philosophies can fit some of the evidence, but they simply do not offer a valid explanation when confronted with other competing theories or with the entire body of evidence (or lack of). With that being said, I am certainly willing to hear or read someone’s theory of the world, as long as it’s not just some rehashing of others’ views.
Not to hold the suspense much longer: Kymatica doesn’t have much to say that’s new. It’s a mumbo-jumbo of electromagnetics and religious-spiritual superficialities centered on a denunciation of technology/globalization and a return to ancient, “shamanic” traditions that once were practiced in a same pattern all over the globe.
Benjamin and Daniel Stewart, the guys who made this film, seem to buy Freud wholesale (16:40), perhaps unaware that his theories are hotly debated. Most importantly for our purposes: Freud’s theories are a product of his thinking, they are a human construct, just like nationalism, capitalism, the legal system, and other structures the movie berates. So the movie that’s supposed to free our consciousness starts by anchoring itself strongly in Freudian thought. It tells us terrifying stories about the Evil false-ego, who is the polar opposite of the ego. The interaction of the too opposite poles creates a magnetic impulse, which the filmmakers define as consciousness.
Wait, but I thought there was more to consciousness than a simple magnetic impulse, after all even a car battery can create such an impulse, yet would you consider it a “conscious being”? Consciousness at the level of planets? Yup, at the level of all things! That’s an interesting definition. But if you don’t buy it, you will probably not find the supportive “studies” the filmmakers use, such as linking electromagnetics and mystical chanting (21:10), very convincing either.
The main theme of the documentary is that humanity is blindly controlled by agents of the false-ego bloodlines. The documentary goes on to deplore the effects of colonialism and globalization, which were directed, according to the filmmakers, to destroy traces of ancient “shamanic” traditions that are viewed by the elites as dangerous to their rule because revealer of an “ancient truth.”
To be fair to the moviemakers, I salute their attempt to at least question the world around them and to try to see what is happening beyond the curtains. The movie starts with a call for action: stop blaming others, you have the power to change your own life. Later, at 23:50: “There are hundreds or thousands of boundaries on your freedom, from government regulations to societal norms;” or “all [conflict] begins with a breakdown in communication” (19:00); or at 32:00 when it warns us to be aware of the perversion of language and be aware of how we form our beliefs and concepts of the world.
Unfortunately, the movie does not dig deeper into any of these questions. Instead the entire movie is a circular, superficial discussion around Kymatica (20:00), a vague dualistic concept positing that everything in the universe is organized along two poles, which do not necessarily exclude each other, yet are opposites. The film focuses on electro-magnetics because of the negative and positive poles of each living thing. Supposedly when speaking ancient Hebrew and Sanskrit, the speaker produces vibrations that move matter into sacred geometrical patterns (21:10), which somehow proves the filmmakers’ point.
The film goes on to quote an eccentric thinker like William Comyns Beaumont for the proposition that the Central American civilizations “never originated on American soil,” to support the film’s theme that pre-historic shamans were traveling from continent to continent to help the dawn of civilization. Yet how could Mr. Beaumont himself assert such a claim when he never traveled to Central America. His analysis consists in comparing Egyptian hieroglyphs and Mayan symbols, yet the two have nothing to do with each other and do not function at all in the same way. But how could Mr. Beaumont have known this, since Mayan symbols were not fully decoded until 10-15 years after he passed away. The fact that the documentary has no shame quoting his (proven) false “analysis,” really makes me question the integrity of the filmmakers.
Undaunted, the movie then presents the works of Barry Fell, the author of America B.C. and other works of pseudo-archeology that claim that America was settled by Celtic Druids [hint: virtually interchangeable with shamans in New Age terminology] and other civilizations, including Egyptians. Needless to say the accuracy of his findings has been greatly debated, and never accepted at the academic level. The producers’ response would certainly be that his works are not well accepted because they attack the existing orthodoxy in the field and because Mr. Fell was neither an archeologist nor a linguist, yet relied intensely on both disciplines. In other words, he was an outsider and the system rejects him as such.
This is one of the running themes in Kymatica: that the “establishment” is fighting tooth and nail to keep the disturbing “truth” from being exposed. Unfortunately, once again this is a straw argument. When Einstein first presented the theory of relativity in 1905 he was attacking the 200 year-old Newtonian dogma. His views were hotly debated. But eventually, they were accepted because his works were peer-reviewed and the body of evidence in support of his theory became too large to ignore.
For another similar example, look no further than the incredible story of architect Michael Ventris cracking the Linear B script in 1952. Mr. Ventris, like Mr. Fell, was not academically trained in linguistics or archeology, yet his findings were accepted by the mainstream establishment almost immediately. A miracle? Not even close. In fact, Mr. Ventris did two things that Mr. Fell, and other pseudo-researchers, failed to do: firstly, he constantly kept in communication with experts in the field, exchanging notes and keeping a dialogue open. Secondly, he also kept an open mind and accepted to change his starting hypothesis when it didn’t match the facts.
Kymatica presents just too many false believes to de-bunk them all in a review. Some notable ones though: a discussion starts at 29:00 about the “law society” comprised of judges, attorneys and enforcement agents who decide upon our laws and control our society in secret ways (I will skip the part where the movie claims that the organization of Western society rests entirely on maritime law). Disclaimer here: I am an attorney, so maybe I’m also trying to influence you in secret ways with this review!
At 39:00 we are told that all power structures created throughout the history of Humanity are a result of our false-ego. Forget about Michel Foucault’s profound critique of power in modern society, it is of no importance to the filmmakers and therefore simply not mentioned anywhere.
At 45:33, to show the grip of the elite (the “Bloodline”) over our society, the movie claims that George W. Bush is “closely related to every European monarch on and off the throne.” While I can’t judge the claim—not enough background on this and no desire to research it either—I can look at who the quoted author is: Michael Tsarion. A guy who apparently made a fortune out of recycling conspiracy theories, but does not engage in debate over his ideas other than by using his fists (check out the link to see if I’m exaggerating).
But I saved the best for last! Two claims in Kymatica really bothered me, to the point where I had to write this review. Firstly, at 14:15, the claim that “Only in esoteric religions, mysticism and in quantum physics do we find any attempt at explaining how thoughts and emotions fit into the sensory-perceptive word.” This is clearly a false claim: on the one hand, it omits Philosophy and Psychology, the two most important fields in the study of the interaction of our thoughts/emotions and the world around us. On the other hand, it throws in “quantum physics,” which DOES NOT deal with thoughts and emotions. But hey, it sounds fancy!
The second claim, which comes right at the end (1:21:30) seems solid at first: “you can control your life by how you respond to the world.” But then, as the idea develops I started cringing. Are they really trying to throw-in intelligent design in the mix? Their claim develops along these lines: all organisms have a consciousness… therefore all organisms have a free will… therefore cells, just like humans, make choices about how to evolve! While a staggering 50% of Americans still don’t believe in evolution, the theory of evolution through random mutations is one of the most proved scientific ideas of our time. Intelligent design, like creationism, was never a valid scientific theory.
Overall, Kymatica does address some important issues, yet it fails to answer them in any meaningful way. In addition, the methodology of the film creators simply does not hold water and many of their supporting sources are either taken out of context or simply wrong. While the movies’ prescription (“you can control your life by how you respond to the world”) is a good starting point for some deep thinking on our own individual consciousness, we still need to make sense of the world around us. But for that to happen, we need to do a lot of researching, thinking, reading and discussing. Simply replacing the West’s dominant Platonic-Christian discourse with a ready-made worldview, like that of Kymatica, will only lead us to persist in our delusions.