An urban legend says that L. Ron Hubbard settled on the E-Meter because he was unable to steal the patent for his first choice, the Magic 8 Ball, which was invented and patented by Abe Bookman in 1946. It certainly would have cost much less than the meters and was available in many department stores.
No matter what kind of science you use to describe the E-Meter, you are left with little more than an illusion (like the classic magician stunt of sawing someone in half). This simple ohm meter merely measures “resistance” to an electical flow. When electricity is passed through the body with origination points on each hand, the current seeks the “path of least resistance.” That is, it doesn’t go anywhere near the brain — preferring the center mass of the body (heart, lungs, chest cavity). But then, for SOME PEOPLE, maybe the path of least resistance IS their brain. But I digress.
And, of course, you must factor in body fat, amount of fluids consumed prior to the test, dry versus oily skin, amount of surface contact on the electrodes, individual sensitivity to electrical current, etc. What you end up with all those dials and switches is hardly an indication of
If Scientology were REALLY serious about getting electrical phenomenon feedback from a person’s mind, then they would use the latest technology for actual lie detectors, or polygraph machines (but then, that system can be fooled too). It would include, blood pressure monitoring, heart rate and breathing … in addition to measuring perspiration on the skin. These four signals are monitored on a computer by the examiner, in addition to “body language” and “eye movement,” and a subjective conclusion is reached as to the truthfulness of the answers. When I had mine done for my gig at the Sheriff’s department, I don’t remember them suggesting any body Thetan activity (but then, maybe that’s in my secret employee file).
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