During scientific experiments of research into peoples’ sense of smell, in order to eliminate the possible placebo effect, test participants have no conscious perception of the fragrance being diffused during in the ambient.
The simple fact that probing results are obtained with such scientific tests shows how odours can subliminally influence human emotions and behavioural responses.
In the laboratory, a test participant is placed in a stressful situation while an imperceptible fragrance is diffused in the ambient. his physical reactions are interpreted by means of electroencephalograms, skin resistivity and blood pressure tests, etc.
After a period of time the subject is exposed to the same odor, but without the stress.
His body tends to manifest the same reactions triggered by the perfume under the stressful conditions.
The fact that the scientists are instinctively concerned with creating stressful situations for a test says a lot of their twisted mindset, and alludes clearly to the ultimate goal of the financial backers and sponsors.
Why not just put the participant at ease with some relaxing music and a massage? Then recreate happiness with the perfume?
Is it more complicated? Not at all, it is just a choice.
The proven subliminal effects of odours can be exploited in aromatic settings and scenographies, in places such as shops, offices or public places (in the underground, at train stations and so on) or anywhere else where it can be necessary to achieve a particular psychological effect and behavioural responses without disturbing the daily routine of the place.
There are no yet any laws that protect citizens against the subliminal use of odours by public bodies or commercial enterprises whose aim would be to influence peoples’ minds social behavioural patterns without their knowledge (by diffusing androstene molecules, for instance).
This is a serious shortcoming in European legislation, in light of the huge amount of money that multinational cosmetic corporations are pouring into research studies on the psychological effects of odours (Olfactory research fund). The sad fact is that in today’s legislators are tied by relations of personal friendship and interest with the industry tycoons and certainly have not such ties with us citizens.
For the time being the danger of such a use is only potential while the real danger is in the very nature of the modern chemical fragrances: These aromatic molecules, which are produced by chemical synthesis, can alter the endocrine and nervous system alike, provoking allergies, which lead to other physical conditions such as asthma. Their side effects are intentionally kept secret. In fact, aromatherapists claim that chemical compounds have psychological side effects in addition to physical alterations, but multinational corporations will certainly not unveil the dangers of the products they sell.
I still remember with sadness the words spoken on TV by a former Enichem employee, who was suffering from cancer during the scandal of January 2003 when news of the company’s toxic waste was breaking. The poor man was saying “in the aromatic department we are all falling ill, one after the other” …
In December 2002 the news broke that in the USA a “skunk bomb” had been successfully tested. This weapon could disrupt and wreck the enemy’s nervous system. This shows the real direction of the scientific studies carried out in this field. It is not very therapeutic, is it?
Good news is that natural aromas are not harmful. On the contrary, they are beneficial and there is a field in “green” olfactory research where essential oils are tested for the treatment of disorders that can otherwise only be dealt with psychiatric drugs (see Perfumetherapy)
Some scientific research in this field is currently tackling the issue of the therapeutic use of the subliminal effects of aromas. Here the patient is first exposed subliminally to the aroma during the therapy. Then, later on, he inhales the aroma consciously in order to obtain a feedback response to the treatment.