Ghosts in the Machine

Members only article

Ghosts in the Machine: The aura camera was invented by the American, Guy Coggins, in the 1970s.

Ghosts in the Machine

One of numerous websites describes its function as follows:

Aura photography…is based on the understanding of modern technology combined with the information that past cultures have known for millennia. This includes Kirlian photography, electronic acupuncture, biofeedback measurements, as well as old healing methods like acupuncture, acupressure, Ayurveda, and so forth. Using this wealth of knowledge, we can create technologies that can help us view the coloured radiant Aura and allow us to open up new possibilities of perception for our inner worlds. The method our technologies use to read one’s Aura is known as “Biofeedback”, since a physical reading of one’s bio-signs is the main method of Aura analysis…Throughout history, Auras could only be seen by a gifted few. Progen has, through modern technology, given everyone the ability to see Auras.

In practical terms, the ‘biofeedback’ information is gathered using a hand sensor, and translated into ‘a radiant, colored aura field around the body’ using pre-programmed computer software. It is interpreted in relation to ‘a person’s internal make up at that moment, showing balance and well being’ through the use of a colour key. In truth, the photographs do not show the actual image of the body’s unseen energy field, but the imitation of such a field, based primarily on something called skin resistance. This is one of the physiological variables measured by a galvonometer, as part of a polygraph or ‘lie detector’, whereby an unfelt electrical current passes through the subject’s hand and detects sweat gland activity associated with nervousness.

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Published in Photoworks issue 17
Commissioned by Photoworks

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