Lifesaver for some, quackery for others – what’s the deal with geopathic stress?

Is geopathic stress real? (Picture: Getty/Metro.co.uk)

‘My wife and I lived together and slept in the same bed for 27 years. She died but I remained, and remain, healthy.’

Tragically, Peter Stott lost his first wife to cancer in 1998. Her death, he believes, was due to geopathic stress (GS) – harmful energies that originate from the Earth.

‘I found out that the house where we had lived had a serious GS problem,’ he says. The discovery prompted him to become a professional ‘dowser’, devoting his life to finding and managing geopathic stress.

But what exactly is this mysterious force erupting from the surface of the Earth – and can it really harm people?

If you’ve never heard of it, you won’t be alone. Likewise if you know what geopathic stress is, but don’t believe in it. 

The field is one in which faith often quashes science, and passion wins over proof.

Geopathic stress is said to cause discomfort and health issues for certain individuals. These energies, also known as ‘harmful Earth rays’, can be detrimental, beneficial or neutral according to those in the know.

Peter Stott is a professional dowser

The word ‘geopathic’ is derived from the Greek words ‘Geo’ meaning the Earth and ‘pathos’, meaning disease or suffering – hence the term pathogens, the medical terms for bugs that make us ill.

Although GS might sound like BS to some readers, it’s worth noting that sewers and underground pipes, for example, can emit harmful gasses and negatively impact a person’s health. In particular, hydrogen sulphide in the fumes can be potentially fatal.

Dowsing is also used to detect gasses that aren’t man-made, including methane seeps in wetlands and emissions from geothermal areas such as those found in volcanic regions.

Wetlands can emit large volumes of methane (Picture: Getty)

All this begs the question ‘how can one actually detect GS’?

Here we circle back to the controversial practice called dowsing, and this is where things get weird – or weirder.

Follow Metro on WhatsApp to be the first to get all the latest news

Follow us to receive the latest news updates from Metro (Picture: Getty Images)

Metro’s on Whatsapp! Join our community for breaking news and juicy stories.

Dowsing, practitioners say, is a method used to detect the presence of various subtle Earth energies and assess their nature and quality. They argue that some of these energies can be linked to geomagnetic anomalies caused by flowing underground water, dry faults and fissures, subterranean cavities, or mineral and crystal deposits.

Many dowsers use rods… (Picture: Getty)

… while others prefer a pendulum (Picture: Getty)

Dowsing is carried out by a dowser, practitioners who try to find the source of these energies using special tools, such as pendulums, rods, and bobbers – essentially sexed-up tree branches. The person holds the tool, waiting for it to move or react, which they take as a sign that they’ve found what they’re looking for. 

In her book Dowsing: The Ultimate Guide For The 21st Century, author Elizabeth Brown suggests that dowsing can be used to find all manner of underground matter, including water, oil, gas, minerals, cables, pipes, caverns, archaeological artifacts or missing items.

The odd practice can also be used to identify leaks, stress fractures, environmental pollutants, electromagnetic fields, nutritional deficiencies, black spots, and, rather oddly, sexing pigeons. 

Peter tells Metro.co.uk that a skilled dowser effectively advises on the optimal placement of buildings and structures to mitigate the impact of geopathic stress, and often possesses the ability to reduce or eliminate it through the use of various methods, like the ones mentioned in Ms Brown’s colourful book.

He emphasises the fact that GS ‘does not affect everybody in the same way’. 

‘Cancer has been described as “a disease of location”,’ he says. ‘And if there is a family history of cancer – as there was in my late wife’s case – a person can be more susceptible to GS being a contributing factor in succumbing to the disease.’

However, data in support of this claim is sorely lacking. 

Peter believes that GS impacts our immune system, depleting its resources and hindering its ability to function optimally. By eliminating GS from our surroundings, we allow our immune system to operate more efficiently, he contends.

Our susceptibility to GS varies, he says, with some experiencing mild symptoms like sleep disturbances and fatigue, while others may face more severe health issues such as arthritis, multiple sclerosis and cancer. 

Dowsing has been around for millennia (Picture: Getty)

It is important to remember that dowsers are not doctors, and many, if not all, lack any medical or accredited scientific training. Although some studies on the negative effects of GS do exist, the strength of the evidence is certainly up for debate

Additionally, despite claims that dowsing devices can detect a person’s aura and indicate signs of illness, there is no scientific evidence to support this. 

In 2017, rather incredibly, a report revealed that 10 out of 12 water companies in the UK were employing the practice of water dowsing to identify and locate leaks. Even more incredibly, last year, it emerged that Thames Water and Severn Trent Water were still using this form of ‘witchcraft’ for leak detection, despite scientific research indicating its lack of efficacy. Metro.co.uk reached out to both companies for comment on the matter.

At the time of publishing, neither had offered a response.

But water companies aren’t the only ones turning to dowsers for help.

Peter believes that ‘it is also possible to carry a token or amulet on your person that has been imbued with the powers of protection by someone who is proficient in [dowsing]’.

‘This can protect you from GS and other detrimental energies wherever you go anywhere throughout the world,’ he claims. ‘Other protection techniques can also offer a degree of protection.’

Tim Walter, another Brit involved in the mysterious space, tells Metro.co.uk that, contrary to what you might have heard, GS  is ‘not something to be scared of’. 

His sense of GS, he adds, doesn’t affect him ‘day to day’. 

‘I can go into a space and feel, “Oh, this is a bit uncomfortable. I wonder what’s going on here?”,’ he says. ‘If it’s a space that’s suitable for dowsing, in other words, it’s not a pub or something like that, then I might have the dowsing rods with me and I’ll see where the energy lines are and look at that and see why it might feel a bit uncomfortable.’

Tim Walter is a house healer

Tim is a self-described house healer – an exorcist-like individual who rids a house of negative energies and/or malevolent entities.

Many GS specialists never leave the house without their trusted rods, and some are only too eager to whip them out and test buildings and parks for bad energy. 

However, Dr Edzard Ernst, a man who has dedicated years of his life to examining questionable, science-based claims, won’t be enlisting the services of a GS specialist or house healer anytime soon. 

‘Geopathic stress cannot cause health problems for the simple reason that it does not exist,’ says the retired physician. ‘It is a sly invention of quacks who exploit gullible consumers. The methods to diagnose GS are as bogus as the ones that allegedly treat it. But the quacks don’t mind – as long as the consumer pays.’ 

Peter fully acknowledges ‘that dowsing and this work in general is not a catch-all solution for every ailment or every person’s situation’. 

Dowsers also often use Y-shaped branches to divine water and other substances (Picture: Getty/iStockphoto)

‘However, often we are approached by people who are “at the end of their tether” due to their exasperation of experiencing events or circumstances in their lives that are not well catered for in the mainstream wellbeing sector,’ he says.

‘I can only speak personally,  I cannot speak for the possibly tens of thousands of dowsers around the world. If our work can help ease a person’s experience of life then that is a good enough reason to continue to help where I can’.

He adds that ‘we are never going to change the minds of people like Dr Edzard Ernst’, someone ‘who seems to focus exclusively on debunking anything for which there is not a scientific explanation’. Moreover, science, he notes, ‘is moving on with research done into quantum physics and the theory that everything in the universe is connected and is also accessible to everyone’.

Although Peter’s quantum point is fair, so too are Dr Ernst’s criticisms. The scientific evidence in support of GS is simply lacking

Nevertheless, there is no shortage of individuals who swear that they have been negatively impacted by its effects, and turn to dowsers like Peter and Tim for help.

In the field of health and wellbeing, dowsing is not alone in having little scientific support, but many supporters. 

But when it comes to cold, hard facts, there is scant evidence that geopathic stress is an existential threat to our health – or, as Dr Ernst and others might argue, any sort of threat, for that matter.

(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *