On Different Wavelengths

prism, waves, crystal, rainbow

powers of all frequencies at our fingertips

“Light” and “Dark” are really only relative terms, especially in a scientific sense. Visible light is only a very small portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Over the years scientists have discovered many phenomena that reside on the same range of wavelengths, many of which the average person now uses every day. Above the visible spectrum, in shorter wavelengths, are ultraviolet, x-rays and radioactive gamma rays. Below, the longer waves, are infrared, microwaves, and radio waves. Even brainwaves and sound are the same type of phenomena on different frequencies.

So why do we use “light” as a symbol of goodness, and “dark” as evil and negativity. In fact, to be completely in the light, with no darkness, would not only be blinding, but would be painful to the eye, probably conditions required for that would be so hot as to burn you to a crisp. We need shadow, we need deeper shades of color, we need blackness, we need ultraviolet and infrared and brainwaves and gamma rays and all the intricacies of our universe, physical and spiritual, in balance and in connection, working together. Nothing in the world is literally black and white, so why should our faith be so over-simplified?

Waves outside the visible spectrum are used for such a variety of purposes. There are countless medical uses from common x-ray imaging to muscle strain and cancer treatments. We explore the vastness of space and the mysteries at the molecular level. They’re used to cook and preserve food, to find weaknesses in our houses and improve them, as protective detection in burglar alarms and police equipment. And new research is being done every day: for instance, scientists are trying to determine how different frequencies affect the way the brain works and possibly improve conditions such as clinical depression, or even more minor conditions like sleep deprivation.

What we commonly think of as “light” is a limited way of thinking. If we used only the visible forms of light scientifically, if those other wavelengths had never been discovered and utilized, we would still be, as it were, in the Dark Ages*. So by limiting one’s spiritual path to what is largely accepted by society or what is demarcated in one particular book or faith, one would not be exploring and expanding one’s knowledge of one’s inner self and the spiritual world. It would hamper one’s ability to reach Harmony with the Universe and achieve actualization of the True Self.


*This particular phrase doesn’t fit into my Higher Dark symbolism and Dark metaphor. While I adore medieval fantasy and myth about wizards and knights, the actual time-period was dangerous and uncouth for the most part. But I still like my little joke.

I am a writer/illustrator of various types of speculative fiction but mostly modern fantasy. I have loved magic, and the people and creatures who live with it and use it, all my life, and writing and drawing these people in modern environments makes it all the more real to me. I also like to add an element of Darkness and horror, as well as science fiction, for “flavor”. I am fascinated with everything from unicorns and dragons to vampires and demons.

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2 comments on “On Different Wavelengths
  1. Martin Fowler says:

    Rachel, it occurs to me that exploration of outer (higher?) space is in desperate need of some “higher dark” reflection and metaphysics – after all, “higher dark” is not a bad tag for space travel, with all the spiritual, emotional, and aesthetic baggage that goes with how we think about “darkness.”

    Best wishes,
    Martin Fowler

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