The Power of Groups Meditating
I think you all know how I feel about meditation and how important it is for our wellbeing.
All of us easily recognize the benefits of meditating for individuals. In Mayo Clinic’s article Meditation: A simple, fast way to reduce stress, the Clinic states that “Meditation can wipe away the day’s stress, bringing with it inner peace.”
In the last few years there has been more and more research about group meditation. It shows that group meditation is an equally powerful tool. Small groups meditating for peace have reduced crime and stress in an area while increasing happiness. Yet, few government organizations take these peaceful efforts seriously.
People understand the individual benefits but are having a hard time understanding that organized groups meditating for peace can make an enormous difference.
Unfortunately, research shows that once the group stops meditating, it only takes about 12 weeks for the city or country to move back to baseline.
One of the first documented experiences of collective consciousness happened in 1983 through Maharishi Technology of the Unified Field when groups agreed to meditate together for peace. Results were tracked in Israel and Lebanon using quality of life factors. They measured crime, accidents, and stock market results in Israel and Jerusalem. In Lebanon they also measured war effects like deaths and intensity. All areas used news publications to capture quality of life indicators. The results found that the group meditation effectively relieved some of the societal stress. You can find the research at International Peace Project in the Middle East: The Effects of the Maharishi Technology of the Unified Field.
Founded in 1998, the Global Consciousness Project is an international, multidisciplinary collaboration of scientists and engineers. It is based on noosphere which Meriam Webster describes as “the sphere of human consciousness and mental activity…” The word noosphere was first recorded in 1927. Based out of Princeton University, the Global Consciousness Project collects data continuously from a global network of sources. Research results can be found on their website and their current activity on Facebook.
Most recently students at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky began a revival from February 8, 2023, that ended with the National Collegiate Day of Prayer on the 23rd. It drew tens of thousands of outside visitors to the town to be a part of the event and other students have started their own revivals on college campuses across the States.
A Times’ article, What Asbury’s Christian Revival Says About America’s Need for Connection, quoted a professor who described the event prior to the public influx as “a long exhale taken by my anxious students” followed by “an infilling of a holy calm.” In the Cincinnati Inquirer Wilmore Mayor Harold Rainwater reported,
“In addition to the economic spike, the city of Wilmore experienced zero arrests during the nonstop revival, Rainwater said. To his knowledge, no fights or altercations took place, either.”
The world has been watching: How a small service at Asbury took the globe by storm
Haadiza Ogwude | Cincinnati Enquirer | Updated February 27, 2023
A 2001 Chicago Tribune article, Town sees mass meditation as way to world peace, introduced me to Maharishi Vedic City, Iowa. This unusual town is built around transcendental meditation and the ancient Vedic principles of balance and harmony.
According to the Tribune, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi whose followers founded Vedic City is the same Yogi who originally taught baby boomers transcendental meditation in the 1960’s and conducted the 1983 research project mentioned above. The city promotes group meditating among its residents and visitors. In addition, they’re establishing peace centers throughout the world hosting group meditating.
Maharishi Vedic City’s open-air observatory that according to Travel Iowa, can “display in one compact form the whole structure of the universe along with all the movements of the sun, the planets and the stars.” Stone Henge in England is an example of an open-air observatory. — Photo Travel Iowa
In the Permanent Peace article about the theory of Vedic science of consciousness, “war is said to begin in the collective consciousness of entire societies.” In other words, war begins in our minds. Therefore, peace can also become our reality when society’s focus is on peace and harmony.
The standard what we think about comes about is true for both war and peace. The international group Creators of Peace believe in that statement. Founded and supported by women around the world, they ask us to Be the peace you want to see in the world. They hold Peace Circles around the globe.
Creators of Peace is part of the international Initiatives of Change which also has a presence in Canada.
Improving your inner peace.
Meditation teacher and former monk, Chad Foreman, identifies inner peace through group meditation as “Subtle Activism.” You might check him out. He offers free guided meditation videos and instructions like posture through his website The Way of Meditation. Links to other meditation teachers can also be found throughout the site. Five Different Meditations That Use the Breath includes a link to a breathing technique taught by Marcel Hoff – who is the brother to Wim Hof.
There’s an upcoming opportunity to learn how to be a “subtle activist.” I have shared about Heart Math on my blog posts including my book review on Heart Intelligence. Beginning March 31st, they are hosting the third annual HeartMath Institute Global Coherence. I encourage you to attend this virtual event, Unleashing the Power of Collective Heart Intention: Manifesting a New Era of Care, Compassion and a Cooperative World. I especially encourage you if you are working towards inner and outer peace. There will be opportunities to meet up with other “like-hearted” participants in the breakout sessions.
One of the topics you will learn more about is “the importance of collective compassion to facilitate humanity” which I am addressing in this article. Another topic introduces us to the new Global Consciousness Project — 2.0 – we discussed the predecessor work above. These inspiring speakers will help you move us into a more connected and peaceful world.
Together we can make a difference.
P.S. I’m also including a link to My former student Michèle Duquet’s YouTube channel where she offers free meditation videos. She’s making a difference. You can too. Become a Bioenergy Healer at our Spring Workshop in May.