The Legacy of Nikola Tesla

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A Bonafide Genius

Nikola Tesla (b.1856-d.1943) was a futurist, inventor, scientist, engineer, prophet, seer, revolutionist, and “Bonafide Genius”. Considered to be the greatest technological visionary of all time he was the pioneer of AC (Alternating Current) as well electricity, radio, wireless power, radar, X-ray technology and radio-control.

Yet even in the midst of all this genius he shared that humankind was not ready for the great and good and spoke of harnessing other energies such as positive mental energy as well as those found in the music of Bach or Mozart, or in the verses of great poets. Tesla extolled the energy of joy, peace and love comparing it to a flower that grows from the Earth and explained how the beauty and scent of roses can be used as medicine just as the sun’s rays can be ingested as food. He talked of hearing thunder a hundred and fifty miles away and of seeing colors in the sky that others cannot see. He foresaw the passing of his own mother:

I was in Paris when I saw my mother’s death: In the sky, full of light and music, were floating wonderful creatures, one of these had a mother’s countenance and was looking at me with infinite love. As the vision disappeared I knew that my mother had died.

Born and raised in Serbia (modern day Croatia), Tesla moved to America in his mid-twenties to fulfil his dreams. Sixty years later in 1943, he died virtually unknown, destitute and alone in a hotel room at the age of eighty-six.  However, in the 1990s a sudden surge of interest in his Work began to emerge, which until that time had for the most part remained unrecognized and unacknowledged for its pivotal role in technological and social evolution.

Tesla’s “World System”

In 1893 Tesla made a formal declaration in regard to his idea for a wireless communications system but ran out of funding before he was able to complete it. His aim was to harness the Earth’s natural resources of energy in order to create a wireless technology that could span continents which he planned to do by transmitting scanner waves around the globe.

Tesla’s Dream

Tesla’s dream was to implement what he described as a World System in which natural resources could be utilized to create free energy that would be accessible planet-wide. He planned to effect this through a series of towers built close to generating stations that would transmit wireless power enabling wireless communication with any person, in any place, in any part of the world. However, his concept was thwarted by Big Business moguls who were set against any system that championed free energy.

An Ongoing Catalogue of Impediments

Undeterred he persisted encountering many blocks and disappointments in his quest to fulfil his mission. Derailing factors continued to befall him from the outset the first of these being a major private funder falling victim to the Wall Street Crash. Tesla was eventually shunned by all the big money magnets of the day including J.D. Rockefeller and J.P. Morgan, the latter having acted as Tesla’s exclusive backer and insuring further funding for Tesla through The Rothschilds. Both had been financing a select group of pioneering inventors who were rapidly expanding the frontiers of science.

In 1906 a major catastrophe assailed him when funding was withdrawn for an electric-magnifying Tower he was building on Long Island, New York. The structure known as ‘The Wardenclyffe Tower’ fell victim to his financier J.P. Morgan who ceased to offer any further financial support upon discovering Tesla’s plan to use the Tower to supply free electrical power to industry as well as commercially and domestically.

Morgan’s motivation for backing Tesla had been the profit to be gained from the electricity which the inventor was aiming to supply to the world. Morgan is believed to have revoked the funding after realizing the scale of its revolutionary implications and the fact that Tesla’s main motivation for his groundbreaking technology was not to make money but to free humanity from poverty and suffering. Subsequently, Tesla sought new investors without success for Morgan had ensured that no support would be forthcoming from any would-be funders and as a consequence the project was shut down.

A Fated Conversation

The impact of Morgan’s financial withdrawal resulted in Tesla succumbing to a nervous breakdown. Now unemployed he was forced to dig trenches for a basic income. However, the channels he was digging were for the laying of underground cable for ‘Edison Electrics’. The job not only confirmed to him just how limited Edison’s DC system was but also led him to a fated conversation with the site supervisor who impressed by Tesla’s understanding of just how outdated DC was along with his ideas and belief in his own AC being the future of electricity, introduced Tesla to a wealthy banker friend who happened to be a Wall Street investor.

Tesla met with the banker to demonstrate a device he had constructed known as the ‘Egg of Columbus’ – a copper egg that stood on its end and was rotated by a magnetic field of alternating current. The investor was immediately won over and consequently provided him the necessary funding needed.

Tesla opened a laboratory close to Edison’s power station where he pioneered an AC motor and produced a practical application of his alternating current. He also proved that not only could it transmit light and power across vast distances but could also power machinery.

This was the phenomenon the electrics industry had been searching for and so once again Tesla drew the attention of powerful financiers including one of the wealthiest men in America, George Westinghouse, who paid the modern-day equivalent of two million dollars to secure the rights to Tesla’s AC patents and to work with him to build a power system to rival that of Edison. Yet there were dangers to overcome with an alternating current of one-hundred-thousand volts.

After exhaustive research and tests Tesla brought in a transforming device to make the AC current both safe and viable for commercial and domestic use. However, his invention of alternating current and his groundbreaking AC motor along with his intention to bring free energy to the world put him out of favor with Edison and his supporters who instead championed DC.

The War of the Currents & The Future of the World

Edison’s plans for the future were secure because of the majority backing he had been given by Big Business organizations who were buying his technology and to whom he was beholden. Between the late 1880’s and the early 1890’s a ‘battle of wills’ commenced between Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla after the former launched a vicious campaign against the latter whose AC was subsequently dropped by Big Business in favor of Edison’s DC. Yet Tesla persisted to bring his AC to the forefront of progressive technology.

The ‘battle of wills’ became known as “The War of the Currents”. Vast fortunes were invested as these two inventors were pitted against each other in a ‘war’ to decide whose version of electrical power would ultimately be chosen – a decision that would prove to be a defining moment for the future of the world. Was it to be Edison and his DC electrical power already available in some cities and towns and powering industry within his own country? Or would it be Tesla’s superior AC transmission?

Prior to the ‘War of the Currents’ Tesla had made several attempts to collaborate with Edison in developing AC over DC as the main source of power. Yet Edison refused to be persuaded as he considered high-voltage alternating current to be too dangerous. Instead, he invited Tesla to improve his own system of DC (Direct Current) and offered him the great sum of $50,000 to do so.

Tesla agreed and achieved what was asked presenting his solutions to Edison whose reaction was to state he had been joking followed by ordering Tesla to “Get back to work”. Tesla walked out of Edison’s office and the Edison Company and set about proving that DC was too limited and that his own AC was the future of electric power.

Edison’s Ultimate Strategy – The Electric Chair

Realizing that Tesla was further developing his AC to increasingly advanced levels Edison continued to push for his DC to be recognized as superior and the ideal current to power the world. He sought every possible way to discredit Tesla’s AC including warning the media, public, and any interested backers of what he purported to be its risks. He went so far as to demonstrate its “dangers” by publicly electrocuting dogs to the horror of gathered onlookers and media in a bid to prove his point.

In his bid to win the ‘War of the Currents’ Edison took his obsession to another level advising the State of New York to use an alternating current (AC) of a thousand volts for a newly introduced and inhumane method of execution – the Electric Chair. This he hoped would ultimately win him the ‘battle’ by proving that Tesla’s AC was a “death current”. His advice was accepted and soon implemented resulting in the terrifying and protracted demise of its first victim, a prisoner sentenced to death by ‘electric chair’. Nothing was going to deter Edison in his efforts to prove that AC could “kill man or beast”. Yet there were some who held the notion that the war Edison was waging against Tesla was actually driven by the former’s inability to fathom the more advanced and abstract theories and system behind AC which rendered him incapable of developing it himself.

In 1890 the near collapse of Barings Bank in London UK precipitated financial panic and caused investors of Westinghouse Electrics to call in their loans. The enormous legal costs associated with Tesla’s hounding by Edison, plus the outstanding fees still owed to him by Westinghouse Electrics, brought the company to the verge of bankruptcy. In an attempt to save it from going under and ensure that the organization upon which his Work was dependent remained operational Tesla relinquished the millions of dollars he was owed in royalties and licensing fees. In doing so he lost his personal fortune and ability to fund his future Work.

The Niagara Contract

The turning point in ‘the battle of wills’ came in 1893 when the head of the Niagara Falls Cataract Construction Company, Edward Dean Adams, agreed to Tesla’s proposal to install a two-phase AC system to transmit power generated at the Falls. He awarded the highly prestigious ‘Niagara Contract’ to Westinghouse Electrics, the company through which Tesla had been conducting all his experiments and research.

The construction process was fraught with difficulties and proved to be an excessive financial drain on its investors some of whom were ranked among the wealthiest men in America and Europe and included J. P. Morgan, W. K. Vanderbilt, Lord Rothschild, and John Jacob Astor.

It took five gruelling years of extortionate cost and financial risk along with ongoing construction crises to complete Tesla’s “unproven system” which was doubted by almost all involved from builder to investor. Tesla himself never doubted for a moment its viability and capacity for successful completion and the ultimate fulfilment of its purpose.

On November 16, 1896, the system was activated and the first power supply reached Buffalo, New York at Midnight. Within a few short years the number of generators at Niagara Falls reached the initial objective of ten and powerlines were supplying electricity to the whole of New York City both night and day. Even the Edison systems converted to AC.

The Pioneer of Wireless Technology

Tesla’s explorations into how to move electricity wirelessly across the world led him to two possible notions:

1) Through the atmosphere

2) Through the ground.

In 1899 Tesla proved this could be done by creating working wireless electricity that was able to move across vast distances which he showcased at Colorado Springs. He had masterminded a way of naturally sourcing wireless technology after exploring and establishing ways to draw electricity from the ionosphere – the Earth’s outer atmosphere. He developed this wireless phenomenon by tapping naturally occurring systems of electrical interaction and thus envisioned a futuristic scenario in which communication could occur through text, pictures and sound.

In his own visionary words:

When wireless is perfectly applied the whole earth will be converted into a huge brain, which, in fact, it is; all things being particles of a real and rhythmic whole. We shall be able to communicate with one another instantly, irrespective of distance. Not only this, but through television and telephony, we shall see and hear one another as perfectly as though we were face to face, despite intervening distances of thousands of miles. The instruments through which we shall be able to do this will be amazingly simple compared with our present telephone. A man will be able to carry one in his vest pocket.

The Originator of Radio

However, the heavy cloud that followed Tesla’s Work continued to cast a long dark shadow. Prior to the Italian electrical engineer and scientist Guglielmo Marconi’s invention of radio, Tesla had already pioneered radio-wave technology and registered seventeen radio patents. By 1898 he had invented the world’s first radio-controlled device – a remote-controlled boat that he launched publicly to a captivated audience and media.

Tesla found himself in a race against time to transmit the first long-range radio signals to reach across the world, or at the very least to a neighboring country. Yet it was Marconi who won the race. As a result, Tesla’s work was brought to yet another standstill after his funding was once again revoked. After his death it was discovered that unbeknown to him all seventeen of his radio patents had been used by Marconi making it possible for the inventor to transmit the first radio signal and thus be hailed as its pioneer.

A Broken Man

Ultimately, Tesla lost millions of dollars in unpaid fees, had his patents stolen or used without his knowledge, lost critical monetary support, and was financially frozen-out or blocked by powerful money-making moguls. In 1895 a mysterious fire occurred at his laboratory which resulted in the destruction of all of his designs, models, prototypes, plans and experiments. When approached for comment by the New York Times he could only state the following: “I am in too much grief to talk. What can I say?”

Tesla was repeatedly pushed aside in favor of other inventors backed by Big Business powermongers. He was purposely shunned and continually denied the opportunities to develop and establish his ingenious technological vision which could free the people of the world from financial enslavement. He was ostracized because of the threat his visionary genius posed to the profiteering agendas of Big Business and their unscrupulous schemes for collecting taxes on non-renewable energy sources. His inventions and patents were plagiarized by other inventors who fell into line with the conditions and demands of their self-interested backers. In the absence of critical funding Tesla was unable to develop his unprecedented and extraordinary range of prolific inventions and so his far-reaching legacy became tragically lost to the world.

It is Tesla’s AC system that powers our world today, the commercial application of which is far removed from his original altruistic intention. It is believed that the US military have access to and continue to use, exploit and distort his inventions and theories. One example is the Alaskan based military ‘project’ HAARP – the ‘High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program’ – and its primary agenda to establish what the US Armed Forces describe as “full-spectrum dominance.” This goes against everything Tesla envisioned as a humanitarian and visionary – which was to provide free electric power sourced from the ionosphere with the goal of establishing progressive technological harmony in the world.  His dream of a “world system” that would freely connect and unify the global population via naturally-sourced wireless communication has yet to come to pass. The Establishment conspired against him to ensure he lost everything and that his name and genius were wiped from the memory of the world.

Impoverished Death – Inestimable Legacy

For all of his pioneering genius and altruism Tesla had to bear the cruelest of fates at the hands of Big Business financiers with self-interested agendas. During one interview he told a journalist: I am a defeated man. I have not accomplished the greatest thing that I could have. When asked what that was he replied: To illuminate the whole Earth. There is enough electricity to become a second Sun. Light would appear around the equator as a ring around Saturn. Instead, he died alone and impoverished in a hotel room; his dream for the world and his vision for humanity, like his genius, unacknowledged and unfulfilled.

Immediately following his death the FBI ransacked his hotel room seizing his private documents, designs and plans for new inventions and prototypes. Few if any of these have been seen or heard of since.

Nikola Tesla was not only a genius inventor and scientist but also a great humanitarian and visionary prophet. He once shared: If we use fuel to source our power we will be living on our capital and exhausting it rapidly. This method is barbarous and wantonly wasteful and will have to be stopped in the interest of future generations. On this, humanity must build its hopes for the future with its full development of a perfect system of wireless transmission to any distance. Distance which is a chief impediment to human progress will be completely eradicated in thought, word and action. Humanity will be united, wars will be made impossible, and peace will reign supreme.

The world lives in the shadow of the destruction of Nikola Tesla and his inventions and innovations – technological brilliance that would have changed the future of humanity and the world. Subsequently we find ourselves confronted with wide-scale electro-magnetic radiation and toxicity and the noxious pollution of dirty-electricity saturating the globe and which pose the greatest threat to the health and wellbeing of All Life on Earth.

Yet the imprint of Tesla’s profound, altruistic and futuristic technological genius remains deeply embedded within the collective psyche and given the opportunity has every chance of fulfilling its original intention. Despite being thwarted at every turn Tesla still managed to give us so much. Now it is up to us to carry his torch forward and champion his phenomenal technological vision that he no doubt continues to gift the world through his guidance from a world beyond our own that he so ardently and passionately believed in. Never before has it been more crucial to develop, enable and prioritize Tesla’s “world vision” of naturally-sourced technology and free energy for all; of a united humanity where wars have been made impossible; a world in which peace will reign supreme.

Nikola Tesla was a blessing to the world and his prototypes and plans are not the exclusive property of a profiteering few with an agenda who will systematically fail to adhere to the humane and ecological pure intention that underpinned all of his blueprints.

I leave the last words to Tesla: Science is but a perversion of itself unless it has as its ultimate goal the betterment of humanity.

By Nicolya Christi

One Response

  • What a wonderful article. Such a powerful summary of a great genius and the ongoing tragedy of his life as well. Nicolya, thank you for writing this piece. I have often wondered why so much tragedy followed Tesla throughout his life. Did it have to do with some deep, perhaps spiritual backlash to such advances of possibility? Or perhaps it was simply the resistance of the profit driven system to ideas that could subvert that power. Or some personal pattern in Tesla’s psyche repeating itself over and over again. I don’t know, but I imagine it might be a combination of all three. Tesla was a genius and your article has inspired me to learn more about him. Thank you.

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