Sai (saizai) wrote in academic_empath,
Sai
saizai
academic_empath

Heat & exocrine stimulation as empathic medium

In reading The Hidden Dimension lately, I was reminded of two potential avenues for empathy: smell and heat.

I can't think, offhand, of an experimental setup by which you could remove those though and still have an "in-person" experience; of course, that may be entirely the point. Distance, perhaps? E.g. being across the room?

Anyway, how well do they match up with symptoms?

Pro:
* sensation of "feeling" energy tactile-ly, when within range
* working better at close range (at least for me)
* heat & exocrine patterns do vary with emotion
("exocrine" contrasts with "endocrine" - i.e. external chemicals [like smells] that affect organisms)
* heat & exocrine receptors known to exist in the skin
* might account for tactile / smell / taste experience of empathy (smell = 90% of taste, etcetc)
* might account for a lingering "feel" to a place (heat stays a little bit, smells can stay around for a long time indeed in small amounts)
* does result in an "aura" like effect around a person, with trails when they move

Con:
* don't know that exocrines can vary that quickly; air saturation and all that would imply that they have delay directly (cubically?) proportional to distance
* AFAIK, the senses are not able to pick these up farther than a few feet range - and people report empathy at much greater distances (or even non-line-of-sight)
* does not account for the qualia of empathy; only gives a possible transmission route
* don't know that heat / chemical 'auras' would be as finely detailed as some people perceive them
* does not account for meridians or tusbo/chakras (AFAIK of anatomy & physiology...)
* don't know of mundane mechanism for conscious regulation of these; ought to be purely autonomic (any ANS specialists?) - how could one "channel energy" etc?
* does not account for synaesthetic perceptions (e.g. visually "seeing" auras)

This is to a certain extent testable, I'm sure, but only (as far as I can think up) on a correlation basis. Unless you can introduce some sort of med that induces particular exocrine releases? (That would be rather interesting...)

Also on a correlation basis in that it doesn't rule out "energy"; after all, the heat or exocrine-release or whatever could merely be a side effect of some hypothesized, more basic force (said "energy"). You'd have to be able to suppress the heat etc while still getting some sort of effect to test this.

So you could say whether empath perception of someone correlates to, e.g., a heat-camera or computer-nose (they have those now, mainly for bombs and etc) image.

So... suggestions? Comments? Pro/con points I've left out? Experiments that could weed these out while minimally disrupting baseline, or that could show causality?
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