By Tijn Touber, Ode Magazine
How do pigeons always manage to fly straight home, no matter where they are dropped? How do they find their way back even if they’ve been sedated and taken hundreds of kilometres in a black box? How do they do it when they have been transported in a pen spinning 90 revolutions a minute? Do they smell their way home? No, even when their smell nerve has been severed, they still make it home safely.
Most scientists ignore such questions. But the British biochemist Rupert Scheldrake, educated at Cambridge and Harvard, is fascinated by the inexplicable behaviour of animals. Sheldrake, believes that information – memory – is not stored in the brain. He speaks of a ‘morphogenetic’ field: a web of memory that connects generations of creatures so that the experiences of one are beneficial to all.
The morphogenetic field is an information carrier that living beings can tune in to. Sheldrake implies that pigeons tune into the field because the information about the location of their home is stored there. They are linked to their home and to one another by invisible threads. Animals probably use this field to communicate with each other instantly, as do schools of fish that move in unison.
This morphogenetic field could also explain why the colonies of albatrosses taken from an island in the Pacific Ocean and let go 5,000 kilometres away on the American west coast managed to get home 10 days later. Or take dogs, for example. Countless experiments using video cameras hooked up to timers show that dogs ‘know’ when their owner is coming home. No matter how far in the future that moment is or how arbitrary, the dog points his ears, jumps off the sofa and waits obediently by the front door.
Next: telepathic communication
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