In 1994, physicist Bernard Leikind visited the Firewalking Institute and tried to dramatically illustrate this concept by strapping two sirloin steaks to his feet and then walking across a bed of coals while The Discovery Channel filmed the event.
The steaks seemed to be unaffected by the coal bed.
then placed a metal grill in the coals and, when it was glowing red, he
placed the same steaks on the grill and the metal instantly seared the meat.
felt this sufficiently demonstrated that mental state had nothing to do with the phenomenon of firewalking.
emphasized that it would not be possible for humans to walk on the glowing, red grill without injury.
As soon as he
said this, a number of people from our staff walked on the grill without harm.
I suggested to Dr. Leikind
that we blindfold him and lead him in various directions near the coal bed so that he
would have no way of preparing himself mentally before actually stepping onto the embers.
also refused to walk on the metal grill, so I assumed that at some level he
too must have realized there was more to the phenomenon than the conductivity of the coals and simple physics.
In fact, after years of insisting that firewalking was rather safe due to the low conductivity of the coals, with temperature being irrelevant, on May 9, 2000, Dr. Leikind
finally signed a statement saying, "Any claim that the temperature of the coals is not important...is simply preposterous;" and adding, "it is my opinion that firewalking is an abnormally dangerous or 'ultrahazardous' activity."
The reason Dr. Leikind's
steaks were seared by the glowing metal while human feet were not is simply because the human foot was connected to a living, conscious being who is more than inert matter.