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THE SECRET OF LIFE

In the late 18th century, Alessandro Volta discovered the effect that electricity had on the leg of a dead frog. Volta also invented the storage battery, the device that we use in our cars and flashlights today. Volta's work with animal electricity (today called "electro-biology") earned him nothing but ridicule. He was often referred to as the "frog's dancing master."

The 19th century saw tremendous strides in the advancement of electrical knowledge. Almost all of the systems we use today for electrical production and transmission of power were developed then-oil-filled condensers, transformers, 3-phase power and the rest. Nikola Tesla either invented or discovered most of these systems.

In the early 20th century, Tesla invented a system of wireless telegraphy. A young Italian electrical engineering student, Marconi, then used Tesla's notes and took credit for the discovery.

Communications and power production adaptations of Tesla's works continued to proliferate. The effect of electrical current, voltages, and radio frequencies on living organisms continued to be largely ignored by all but a handful of engineers and medical doctors. Nikola Tesla was one of those engineers.

Another one of these handful of electrical engineers was a Russian emigrant living in Paris in the 1920's, Georges Lakhovsky. Lakhovsky compiled his observations about the effect of electricity and radio waves on living organisms in this book, which he first published in 1935. Many of Lakhovsky's theories were subsequently confirmed in The Body Electric by Becker and Selden, published in 1987.

One of Tesla's articles in the two-volume set was titled "High Frequency Oscillators for Electro-Therapeutic and Other Purposes." The article was one Tesla had read to the 8thy annual meeting of the American Electro-Therapeutic Association at their meeting in Buffalo, New York, on Sept. 13 to 15, 1898. What intrigued the electrical engineer was that the circuits described, including the illustrations, were identical to those in the Lakhovsky device-over 30 years before Lakhovsky, with Tesla's help, got his device to work.

Nikola Tesla may have been a much more modes and unassuming man than anyone has ever suspected. When he was informed that Marconi had used his work, Tesla merely smiled. When George Westinghouse told Tesla a contract they had signed, worth millions to Tesla, would ruin him (Westinghouse), Tesla merely smiled, tore up the contract, and dumped it in his wastebasket. Did Tesla simply install the circuitry he had developed decades before into Lakhovsky's machine and then allow Lakhovsky to take credit for the design?

The evidence in that article in that set of books indicates that this is exactly what happened. However, we will never know for sure.

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