An Overview of Body Electronics:
Effectiveness and Controversies

A raw foods diet which includes some raw animal foods (as well as some supplements) is one of four principal pillars of a natural healing system called Body Electronics (BE).  This system has been labeled by several natural health writers (including Roy Kupsinel, MD) as one of the most powerful natural healing systems in the world.  BE was founded by the late John W. Ray, ND in the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s in Oregon (his native state), California and Utah.  He eventually moved to northern Wisconsin in 1980, and much of the growth in the popularity of his Body Electronics system happened in and around Wisconsin in the 1980s, eventually spreading well beyond those states. John was a genius and a powerful intuitive, and managed to re-discover several highly important and powerful principles of healing.  John Ray and his senior instructors taught the system in traveling workshops around the USA and in Canada until John moved to Raratonga, Cook Islands in the late 1980's, and eventually to New Zealand. 

A few instructors in North America continued to teach this system during the 1990's, and in 2001, master instructor Douglas W. Morrison ("Doug") returned to the USA after a long stint in New Zealand, and resumed teaching seminars and workshops on BE in the USA.  
It seems worth noting that during the 1970s and 1980s, John was a rather controversial figure in the world of natural healing and alternative healing methods, and he was also known to often exaggerate when speaking, both in reporting healings effected by the BE system, and in other realms as well. John had, among other things, studied under one or more controversial fundamentalist polygamist Mormon teachers and "leaders" in Utah in the 1960s and 1970s (and possibly in the 1980s as well), including Rulon Alred, the polygamist fundamentalist Mormon who was a physician and leader of a large (and somewhat outlaw) Mormon fundamentalist group; Alred was killed by members of a rival Mormon fundamentalist sect in 1977. During the 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s, John was known to make some rather strong statements in favor of polygamy, as well as other ideas from the fundamentalist Mormon movement, during his lectures on Body Electronics. He also reportedly had numerous wives, girlfriends and children during much of this period, although his behaviors with women seemed to differ somewhat from those advocated by fundamentalist polygamist Mormon sects. John also associated during the 1980s with some ultra-right wing radicals and conspiracy theorists; I remember receiving several postal mailings during that period from John Ray in which he forwarded conspiracy-theory rants from some of these organizations alleging that Vitamin C was a poison and that Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling was a "communist stooge"; I personally found these mailings and some of John's statements at this time to be very irritating and of course, rather paranoid.  John moved to Raratonga in the Cook Islands in the late 1980s and thereafter his teaching and practice work was largely confined to the areas of the Cook Islands, Australia and New Zealand, and it appears that some of his more controversial behaviors and public statements had largely ceased by this time.  Those who knew him during the years prior to his death that he spent in the Cook Islands, Australia and New Zealand have reported that he did not seem to exhibit many of the more controversial behaviors during that period; some have speculated that he had finally "settled down".  In summary, my own perception is that John Ray appears to have been in many ways a powerful healer, a powerful teacher of self-healing methods, and a powerful intuitive, and he definitely made a positive impact upon many people who were in physical and/or emotional pain, but he also made many exaggerated and controversial statements, and his life during the 1960s, 1970s and early to mid 1980s seems to have been rather controversial. The four pillars of BE are:
  • raw diet -- now a raw vegetation and animal food diet (RVAF diet); usually raw vegan prior to 1989.  John Ray claimed that while the diet comprised only 10% of the total bulk of his system, it comprised an essential and foundational part, without which the method simply could not work. He further claimed that it was impossible to ignore the raw foods diet, and that if one did ignore the raw foods diet, then, with extremely rare exceptions, the system could not be effective no matter how much time and effort one put into the other three pillars of the system. 
  • heavy supplementation with various vitamin and mineral supplements, including copious quantities of food enzymes, and even more massive quantities of "chelated" colloidal prehistoric minerals from an ancient vegetation deposit in Utah.  Luckily, John had been advocating use of these minerals since the 1960's, and had found an inexpensive supply of these minerals -- available in both liquid and capsule form -- well before these colloidal prehistoric minerals became an (usually-overpriced) MLM fad in the mid-1990's.  The chelated colloidal prehistoric minerals which John so strongly recommended remain available to this day at an extremely affordable price, from Enzymes International in Wisconsin; this humic shale extract also likely contains significant amounts of humic acids and fulvic acids (ingestion of the latter especially has been reported by several authors to have show correlations with increased energy and vitality levels, particularly for people suffering from chronic low energy levels.  The minerals are called "Coenzyme Minerals", and Enzymes International may be contacted at: Enzymes International: Hwy 51, PO Box 157, Manitowish Waters, WI 54545; phone (715) 543-8401.  The Coenzyme Minerals brand of minerals are by no means the only one which will work, so long as one finds a good broad-spectrum source of the major minerals and all trace minerals.  Folks in Australia have been using various kinds of rock dust (such as the Minplus brand) decanted in water, and other folks have successfully used other brands of prehistoric colloidal minerals from ancient seabed or lake bed vegetation deposits. Many people supplement the minerals with some raw dried or tableted sea vegetables such as kelp or dulse as well, for even stronger responses.
  • an inner emotional and spiritual attitude of a lovingness and acceptance toward all which occurs in life and toward all emotions and symptoms which arise during healing brought on by diet, supplements and pointholding (below)
  • pointholding -- holding of specific points on the body, non-stop, for a period of from 1/2 hour to 14 hours, where the pointholder presses on a specific point on the pointholdee's body (on the arm, hand, leg, belly, back, neck, etc.), and keeps their finger (or thumb, or elbow) absolutely still, and where the pointholdee lies on a massage table, and remains perfectly still for the duration of the pointholding.  During pointholding, the pointholder may feel tremendous heat or burning in her or his finger pressing the point ("the heat of healing love"), while the pointholdee may experience heat, burning or pain at locations within their body which are remote from that point being pressed, or may re-live previously repressed memories or emotions.  BE teaches that if heat on the pointholder's finger subsides for more than 5 minutes, this means that either all suppressed material linked to this point has been exhausted, or that critical nutrients (usually minerals) have been exhausted.

In the early days of BE (the 1950s, 1960's, 1970's) John Ray and some folks close to him claimed to have witnessed some massive and miraculous healings due to BE, well beyond the more common healings such as amelioration or remission of cancer or chronic illness (diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, arrhythmia) which are commonly associated with switching to raw diets.  Some of these more extreme healings were claimed to include multiple instances of the following, and many allegedly occurred in the span of just a few 2 to 5 hour sessions.  The following healings and others were claimed by John Ray in his audiotape instructional sets on BE, and also in his books, articles, lectures, and videotapes on BE; many were claimed to have happened a number of times:
  • repair and regeneration of all signs and symptoms of severe scoliosis, resulting in perfect spinal conformance, anatomy, alignment and posture
  • repair and regeneration in one 7-hour session of massive spinal deterioration which had resulted in surgical removal of numerous vertebra and insertion of steel rods in and along the spine; the healings reportedly involved complete "dematerialization of the steel rods" (which had been emplaced in the back surgically) and complete return to normal spinal anatomy and function
  • repair and total regeneration of massive tissue damage due to massive prior heart attacks
  • repair of massive tissue and functional damage done by severe prior electric shock
  • complete restoration to normal appearance, functioning, and intellectual ability of autistic and Down's Syndrome children
  • repair and total regeneration of freshly broken bones in limbs (arms and legs) within a few hours
  • repair and total regeneration of quadriplegia due to spinal damage
  • repair and total regeneration of paraplegia due to spinal damage
  • complete regeneration in one or two sessions of massive neurological damage from stroke
  • massive and complete eye color (iris color) change (often seen in the alternative health world as a marker of healing and cleansing of tissue toxins) from dark brown to totally clear blue eyes in one or two weeks or less; sometimes overnight 
  • change or restoration of hair color (the entire hair length, from the roots to the tips) from gray to original natural color in one session, or at times, one to four weeks of BE work
  • growth of limbs to restore proper limb length in persons who had a leg or arm which had been shorter than the other, in one session
  • a lightening not only of iris color (referenced above), but also of skin color and natural hair color, wherein it was reported that dark hair and skin became lighter as the person healed old traumas and physical damage, including sun damage to skin. It seems worthwhile to offer one cautionary note about the claims of hair color turning lighter or to blond color: while I recall that John made this claim in one or more of his instructional audiotape sets and while I have also heard similar stories third-hand from folks whom I met in BE seminars in the 1980s and 1990s, some later teachers of BE have reported to me that they have personally never witnessed such lightening of hair color, and that they are not sure that this has ever happened to people who trained in the BE system. In any case, if it did occur, it was extremely rare. And, it is very true -- as I have mentioned elsewhere on this page -- that John Ray was rather prone to exaggeration in many of his statements. This claim of hair color turning to blond may well be one example of that exaggeration.

as well as the following, which John did mention parenthetically (in later years) as happening only rarely in BE:

  • total regeneration of all teeth, with complete repair of all filled (artificially restored) and empty caries (cavities) lesions, where all prior filings simply "popped out", often overnight
  • total regeneration or replacement of missing teeth, often overnight

  • It is worthwhile to point out here that present day BE practitioners and instructors, while they do claim to have seen drastic healings and drastic restorations of function due to practice of BE, have told this author and others that they simply do not see the above-cited phenomena which John had claimed were quite common, and also, for the most part, have not seen such healings since the late 1970s.  Rather, what they have witnessed instead have been rather dramatic healings of emotional and mental problems, massive healings from CFS and other chronic illness, and amelioration or remission of cancer or chronic illness (diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, arrhythmia) which are commonly associated with switching to raw diets.  However, especially in the area of gradual return of natural hair color to gray hair, and restoration of lost neurological function, and the restoration of nerve supply and function to damaged limbs, the results commonly seen with BE seem to often far surpass the results often seen with a raw diet alone (even one which includes animal foods.)  For a further discussion of Body Electronics in relation to dental regeneration and self-repair of teeth, please see my on-site page entitled My Observations and Opinion on Dental Regeneration With Natural Healing Modalities.

    Why the lessening of drastic healings and regeneration of tissue since the late 1970's?  The theories which have been aired have included the following:

  • that John Ray may have strongly exaggerated or even fabricated stories of miraculous healing; the current author, while acknowledging John Ray's many personal shortcomings and excesses (see notes below), does not believe this to be the case, based upon interviews with numerous persons who were students of John's in the 1960's and 1970's, and who claimed to have been present in seminars where such events allegedly took place
  • that John Ray may have had some particular personal "charge" or healing energy, perhaps due to his massive enlightenment experience (he claimed to have had two such in the 1950's and 1960's), which either caused or facilitated massive and rapid healing in BE participants who were in the same room, and that this energy, effect or talent may have decreased over time, with the passage of years; this is the theory favored by the current author
  • that the composition of the "chelated colloidal minerals" from the "special" mine in Utah has changed over the years as less-experienced miners have mined less-powerful sections of the "healing mineral" deposit, or have perhaps to process the minerals properly before sale; this is the theory most commonly aired by BE instructors and practitioners

  • E-Mail List Groups About Body Electronics, and for BE Practitioners
    There have been, in the past, several e-mail list groups devoted to BE, and most have had a following of 5 or fewer members, and have never garnered many posts.  Most notably, most such list groups never seemed to garner any posts about significant "gains" or improvements, such as testimonials about dramatic healings, from practitioners.  It appears that many BE adherents are rather Internet-shy, and even more reticent about sharing their experiences via e-mail.  However, Chris Bellanger, a long-term Australian practitioner of BE, has recently (2002) started a new e-mail list group for BE adherents at Yahoo Groups which may finally offer a clear forum which may attract a number of members and contributors.  

    Chris's group at Yahoo Groups is called "HowWeHeal".  To learn more about the HowWeHeal group, please visit:
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HowWeHeal
    To join Chris's e-mail list group, send an e-mail to:
    HowWeHeal-subscribe@yahoogroups.com 
    once you have joined the list group, to start sending messages to members of this group, simply send email to:
    HowWeHeal@yahoogroups.com  

    Some Notes About John Ray

    Aside from massive disbelief on the part of skeptics about some of the more drastic healings claimed by John Ray for Body Electronics,  there seem to be perhaps only two criticisms which have been consistently levied against Body Electronics (BE), and they will be discussed at least briefly in this tract.  


    First Criticism: Hypocrisy, Exaggeration and Inconsistency
    The first criticism, and that which has gotten more "air time", is based upon the fact that John Ray himself did not eat a raw diet during most of the period between 1970 and his death, even while advocating it for others, and also that his personal life was often conducted in a manner in marked contrast to his lofty (and affected) authoritarian preachings on morality and ethics which were part of his system and comprised the bulk of his books.  John was also at times somewhat of an alarmist and popularizer of extreme or paranoid ideas, perhaps for the attention factor, and became a bit infamous in the 1980s for his dramatic and overblown doomsday stances on the then-nascent AIDS epidemic, on the hazards of firewalking (this got him into a war of words with devotees of motivational guru Tony Robbins; the current author believes, after having firewalked, that there may indeed be some emotional and energetic damage to humans from doing so, as John Ray claimed), and on the dangers of straying from a raw foods diet (while he himself was not even eating such a diet), as well as relating strange conspiracy-theory-related claims publicly about the harmfulness of (synthetic) vitamin C and about Nobel Laureate Linus Pauling.

    Despite John's occasional latter-day excesses and strays (almost all of these examples appear to have occurred prior to his move to the Cook Islands in the late 1980s) from common sense, the fact remains that he was a genius in the field of healing, and a powerful intuitive who re-discovered and popularized an extremely powerful method of healing and self-healing (pointholding), and also popularized raw-foods diets in an era (1960s and 1970s) when few had heard of them or of their benefits.
    Although some feel that some of John's claims of miraculous healings and drastic eye (iris) color change in the early days of BE may have been inflated, this author has tracked down a number of people who were involved in BE in the early days, and they have confirmed all or at least most of the rather incredible stories and claims related on John's audiotape series regarding drastic healings.  For personal reasons, the author was especially interested in the tales of occasional and complete regeneration of dental cavities and missing teeth, and has been able to independently confirm three of these instances via three individuals who were present, and has since learned of 7 additional such dental healings which also appear to rather well-verified.  For reasons not clearly defined, while the system is still a very powerful mode of healing, such magically intense and massive healings as those which John Ray claimed occurred in the 1960's (listed earlier) are apparently no longer seen, although the system still regularly accomplishes dramatic healings of chronic disease and injuries.  However, as has been noted elsewhere on this page, John Ray spent the last years of his life, including all of the 1990's, living in the Cook Islands and teaching in Australia and New Zealand.  In 2001 and 2002, there have been a number of stories emerging from BE practitioners in Australia and New Zealand, that they have witnessed dramatic healings in BE seminars during the late 1990s and the year 2000 which equaled those listed earlier.

    Second Criticism: Covert Racist or "Aryan" Beliefs in Some of John's Claims
    As related briefly above, one of the more dramatic and drastic claims made by John Ray repeatedly in his lectures and audiotape instructional sets in the 1980's and 1990's comprised the following cluster of "symptoms" which he claimed accompanied healing:

    1) that many people with dark eyes experienced iris color change from brown to green or blue as a result of practicing BE, often after having practiced for only a very short time

    2) that many people with any kind of dark pigmentation to their skin (tan, dark skin, etc.) experienced a drastic lightening of skin color as a result of practicing BE, or, as John Ray put it "as they healed and got rid of toxins and sun damage"

    3) that some people with dark hair color experienced a lightening of their hair color toward blond as a result of healing due to practice of BE (this is a more marked change than the more-common effect which he claimed of loss of gray or white hair and return to original natural hair color); see my further notes on this claim elsewhere in this article as well.

    Interestingly, the above three effects (particularly the latter two) are also among those which most recent (and current!) BE instructors have claimed not to have witnessed since late 1970.  Nonetheless, as John's claims became known in the 1980's, a number of folks (including this author) reacted strongly and negatively, fearing that John's claims belied a racist philosophy, as his claims mirrored the claims of some white supremacists and German Aryan racist ideologies.  Of course, if you have been following the alternative health field for any length of time, you are likely aware that many systems of iridology claim that the iris color lightens as one heals their body of "toxic deposits", and indeed, many adherents of raw diets have observed such changes.  Strangely, for the conspiracy theorists among us, much of iridology in the Western world has originated in Germany, and more than one person has suggested that the racist Aryan ideologues picked up some of their half-baked notions about blond hair and blue eyes from the old early 20th Century German iridologists, or vice-versa.

    John claimed repeatedly in his lectures and his audio tapes on BE that when he had run numerous BE seminars in the inner cities of Detroit and other cities in the late 1960s and early 1970s, they were well attended by black-skinned folks with black hair and dark eyes. Now, here is where his story gets weird: he claimed, on his audio tapes, that a large number of the black attendees experienced, in only one weekend of Body Electronics (raw foods diet, hyper-mineralization with strange prehistoric minerals, lots of supplements, and pointholding), an eye color change from dark brown to blue, that their hair (well, that of some of them....) turned blond, and that their skin lightened by several shades, and a few even experienced a change to white skin. Now, I heard these tales, both live and via John's tapes, repeatedly in the 1980's and early 1990's while studying BE, and I must confess that at the time, I was so alienated by the Aryan-race overtones and racist possibilities of the story, and so judgmental about the fact that John may have therefore been a racist and/or a fascist, that I never paused to consider whether his stories might be true -- I just assumed that they were blatant lies...... Indeed, a number of persons in the 80's in the alternative health world attacked John as a racist on the basis of his strange tales of skin, iris and hair color change....

    In the interim, I have met numerous BE practitioners who studied with John and attended his workshops in that time period.  Most could not recall that John had ever even held the seminars he claimed to have held in Detroit's inner city, and those same people could not remember ever seeing the iris color of any black attendees turn blue, nor witnessed their hair or skin turn lighter.  I have, however, also met two people who traveled with him in those days who have reported to me that they attended some of those inner city seminars with John, and that they do recall that the eyes of "...a few, only a few.." black attendees turned lighter, if not fully blue, within one weekend, but they could not recall any hair color change or skin color change.  John was not always the most truthful person, and he was also rather paranoid at times and, as iterated above, subscribed at times to some strange conspiracy theories about the "dern Commies" who were apparently trying to poison our blood or our Vitamin C or something (shades of Dr. Strangelove!) He also got really hung up on AIDS as a scourge marking "the end of civilization." Very strange, and sad, for so brilliant and gifted a man.  

    For some reason, John (as well as some other iridologists of his time) was apparently rather obsessive about claiming that not only do our irises get lighter, but that our skin gets lighter, as we become healthier. In that same vein, for some odd reason, several current senior BE instructors whom I have met love to drop the claim causally in seminars that their skin is significantly paler than when they started BE, even though I would personally take that as a sign of ill-health and/or lack of sunlight (or a lousy diet)! I will tell you this much: I see, in general, far greater iris color change with all-raw or largely-raw RVAF practitioners than I do in most adherents of BE (most BE students I have met do NOT stick to the prescribed RVAF diet, at least not for more than 3 days, and most eat junk...)  While I have seen an iris color change toward blue or green in many folks who have eaten RVAF diets for a while, and I have seen some cases of gray hair return marginally toward the original color in some RVAF eaters, I have never seen any sign or indication of a lightening of natural hair color or skin color due to eating a RVAF diet or practicing BE.  Rather, and I am quite insistent upon this, I have instead witnessed that the natural hair color of RVAF eaters becomes more vibrant, and often a bit darker and fuller.  Likewise, I have often witnessed folks with rather pale skin gain incredible color tones (greens, reds, pinks, tans, dark coloration) in their skin coloration as they switched to a healthy largely-raw diet which included raw animal food.  On a similar note, many women who eat RVAF diets have commented that they no longer need to wear facial makeup or lipstick, due to the vivid coloration of their facial skin and lips concomitant to eating a RVAF diet.

    In closing, I can offer no resolution of the claims of racism made about John's claims.  Not only have I never witnessed such claims of skin or hair color lightening as iterated in items #2 or #3 above, I personally feel that I have witnessed the opposite shift due to eating a RVAF diet (one of the components of BE).  Further, I have been largely unable to find any strong corroboration for John's stories of such skin or hair color lightening.  I can say that I have never heard any other charges of racism made against John or his senior instructors -- in other words, to my knowledge, no one has ever claimed that any of them were guilty of racism in their personal lives or other teachings.  Bottom line: this whole set of claims by John Ray and some older, earlier BE instructors remains a mystery, with no firm closure.


    Certified Instructors Offering Body Electronics in North America
    Currently, the most senior instructor in BE in the US and Canada is Doug Morrison (click here for his site & schedule), who until 2006 traveled the USA teaching seminars.  This author has studied extensively in the past with Doug Morrison, and feels that Doug is an excellent and skilled BE instructor.  This author does NOT agree wholeheartedly with all the tenets and postulates of BE as taught in its books and classes (e.g. use of ozone, use of colloidal silver, use of certain supplements), and yet strongly recommends BE as a strong system of natural healing which goes well beyond the benefits of a RVAF diet alone.  However, BE is not for the faint-hearted, for those who lack massive inner discipline, or for New Age dilettantes: it demands tremendous tolerance of pain, discomfort, and adherence to a raw diet.  While I strongly recommend BE for its virtues, I also feel that eating a RVAF diet alone will accomplish, in time, some of the drastic benefits seen with BE, and I have since discovered some inner systems of heart-centered healing (elucidated on one of my websites) which appear to be much less painful and yet highly effective for healing many so-called drastic illnesses.

    Offshoots of Body Electronics
    An additional wrinkle, offering additional possibilities for exploration: Marcus Daniels, an early and accomplished instructor of BE, has also deeply studied Rolfing, connective tissue work and Tibetan energetic and spiritual traditions, and has formulated his own system of healing called Cellular Memory Regeneration, which he teaches.  He also recommends a RVAF diet for optimal healing. Click here for a link to a page on this site which describes Cellular Memory Healing and also provides contact information for Marcus.


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