"No one can guarantee success in war. He can only deserve it." - Winston Churchill  

This letter was written after the Oklahoma City bombing:

 

Greetings,

 

It boggles my mind the narrow and linear thinking following the Oklahoma City tragedy. The news media and politicians could not display more ignorance even if they tried! And to think that the people complain of the tabloids and TV sinking to the lowest common denominator. It seems that the response of the media and politicians is attempting to descend to the level of no-brains. Any one with any intelligence must be aware of the interconnectedness and non-linearity of things. How can anyone but a fool believe that by catching the perpretrator and punishing him you can now feel safe again? How can anyone believe that the Oklahomans are just innocent victims? Can you really think that a safe community is just a function of a large, well-funded police force?

 

THE GOOD AND BAD NEWS: You are responsible for all that happens to you. The bombs you experience are your own creation! The tears of the Okoahoma Victims are my tears but on a deeper level you brought it on to yourselves. Just like the buildup of static electricity in a cloud eventually results in the discharge of a lightning bolt, the buildup of weakness and stress in the collective consciousness of a community will eventually bring on calamities. Those calamaties could be bombs, disease, drought, or any such lack of the Nature's cooperation. Nature's connectedness is our connectedness. The opposite is also true: City life gets nourished when the underlying field of connectedness is enlivened by strong, happy (dipping into pure consciousness daily) people living in accord with the laws of Nature.

The non-linearity of life is that anything can happen, good or bad, at any time in accordance with the level of purity or negativity of the collective consciousness at the time; that's how nature works. Fools pretend that everything is random and get surprised by things like bombs in Federal buildings. Then they act like martyrs and cry to Big Government and demand more security, protection, or retribution (as if government can really just grant those things!) But white supremacists and survivalists have always existed with hate for the government. What has kept them from bombing all federal buildings up until now? Nature. The weak thoughts of weak criminal minds ordinarily do not get supported by nature and the criminal usually sees and experiences too many obstacles to the accomplishment of his unnatural desires. But in a society where the silent levels of the collective consciousness are weak and ignored, where no connection between the individual and nature are seen or pursued, in such a weak society evil thoughts just might find support rather than obstacles. The result is calamity. The calamity is Nature seeking balance. After the calamity comes healing and strengthening.

 

Fertilizer (ammonium nitrate) mixed with chemicals creates a bomb. Fertilizing the roots of plants create abundance. There are ways known to fertilize the silent interconnectedness of nature that guarantee no bombs, no calamities for society. It's called superradiance and I'm passionate about it because I have seen it at work in four of the worst areas of our world: South Central Los Angeles, Managua, Nicaragua, Medellin, Colombia and the Israel-Lebanon border during the 1987 war. Just a little superradiance in Oklahoma city would have protected them from such calamities.

 

The following work defines superradiance, the Maharishi Effect and paradigm stretching..

 

THE NEW NERDS OF THE NEW MILLENNIUM

So its the 90's and you've finally gotten used to the reality of legions of computer nerds controlling vast amounts of technology and power as well as having a take-home pay that you can only daydream about. Well forget them, that was last decade's rising tide. Now there's a new nerdy legion looming in the horizon and getting ready to be major. I'm talking about the meditation nerds; the consciousness nerds - -the data banks they're tapping into are nothing less than the very collective consciousness of our society and the results they're pulling out are everything but vague.

LOOK WHAT HAPPENED TO FLEISCHMAN AND PONS

To be able to scientifically repeat and measure any claim is fundamental to being taken seriously in this modern world. The Transcendental Meditation group has over the years studied and measured the benefits of TM and has published many studies. That was pretty straightforward.

But now they have put together a series of claims and accomplishments that are not only far-reaching but has withstood close scientific scrutiny as well as challenges to repeat and verify those claims. What are those astounding claims?

Small groups of meditation experts, practicing the techniques of Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhis, can radiate a measurable level of coherence and harmony into the surrounding society resulting in reductions in crime, accident and sickness rates.

This measurable, repeatable effect is accomplished through a natural phenomenon called superradiance. Unlike the now-infamous Fleischman and Pons claim of cold fusion, these claims have been repeated in locations around the world enough times to be accepted by many scientists as significant. (Whoa, you say. How is this? You are warned that to read further is to put in jeapordy your cherished predisposition of how the World works! Your paradigm is about to be challenged and expanded! In fact somebody did a study precisely about the dynamics of peoples paradigms getting threatened and expanded - I will be including details from the Doctoral Thesis of Carla Linton Brown at the School of Education at Harvard. Her work specifically focuses on the responses from professionals in the Middle East Policy community (researchers, reporters, professors, think tank participants etc.) to superradiance details that push the limits of these people's paradigms. In her words:

" To the extent that further research might bear out these results (of superradiance), they would be of indisputable social and scientific value. But the findings were generally met with various levels of disbelief...continue..)

FLYING WITH THE MILLENNIUM FALCON

What is Superradiance? From the science of physics it has been quite well documented and accepted over the years that no atom is an island; no atom exists independently of the pure quantum field from which it sprang. In fact, it's the field and not the atom which is the ultimate reality. This explains things like how separations of time and space make no difference in certain measurements of subatomic particles and how, in a Josephson Junction (named after Nobel Prize winning Dr. B. Josephson) an electron can actually de-manifest in one spot and re-manifest in another, as if laughing in the face of boundaries we take so seriously like space and time. Since the quantum field is transcendental beyond the planck scale, that is, beyond space and time, an electron can do that as easily as the Millennium Falcon going through hyperspace.

NO MAN IS AN ISLAND; NO ATOM EITHER

Human consciousness springs from that same unbounded field of nature. Basically some quantum physicists and artists have been embracing this concept for years but it's finally getting obvious to more of us normal people that the ground state of the quantum field is the same basic field of nature that wise people have been experiencing intuitively throughout history.

GET IN THE POOL

Just as it is impossible to directly experience a swimming pool without making some waves in the water, the meditators that experience that field make waves in the pure interconnected consciousness field when they do their techniques. This ends up enlivening the collective whole of all consciousness; the surrounding society. The word superradiance was chosen to describe this phenomenon because it also describes the effect in physics of the unstoppable spread of orderliness in certain systems (laser light is a superradiance effect.)

STUDYING WHAT HAS NEVER BEEN STUDIED BEFORE

All this may sound abstract the first time but the consciousness nerds have been studying the dynamics of the enrichment of collective consciousness for over fifteen years and are capable of not only analyzing the degree of enlivenment of society (as measured by reduced crime rates, accident rates, hospital admissions etc.) but also predicting when and where it will take place.

THE MAHARISHI EFFECT

It started in 1974 when it was discovered that when a city has about one percent of the population practicing the TM Technique a reduction in crime and negative trends begins to occur. Back then they just looked at published government records on crime rate, hospital admissions and traffic accident totals but now the investigations include anything that might reflect changes in the collective functioning of society; stock market changes, patent applications, death rates (war or accidents), school attendance rates, alcohol and cigarette consumption, fires, unemployment and news content analyses.

 

This reduction in negative trends was called the Maharishi Effect in honor of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of the TM and the more advanced TM-Sidhis techniques of meditation. As the scientists associated with the TM movement became familiar with this effect, they extended their scope of investigation and it was found that the Maharishi Effect parallels phenomena commonly understood in physics and quantum physics.

LESSONS FROM MODERN PHYSICS

Basic to the whole effect is the quite simple principle that coherent variables in a system exert a stronger influence than incoherent ones. By the late seventies the original hypothesis was found to indeed be true: that there is a field of collective consciousness that is greater than the sum of all individual consciousnesses. And the two things affect each other. Any increase in the "coherence" of the collective consciousness affects individual behavior, health and dynamism as measured by societal trends. To do that the meditators don't have to go out on the streets and shake hands, asking people to behave themselves - it's not a superficial effect - it's a phenomenon of collective consciousness that, once it gets enlivened by large groups of TM meditators, is reflected in the trends and statistics of society's improvement. (Appendix A has the published study)

READY FOR THE WORLD BUT LEFT KNOCKING

So the TM Movement , á la Fleischman and Pons, announced to the world that they had solved, with the Maharishi Effect, many of society's major problems. But, unlike the now infamous Utah scientists, nobody paid any attention to either Maharishi or the scientists working from their data swamped labs on the campus of Maharishi International University (MIU) in Fairfield, Iowa. So what happened was that, ignored by the world, the consciousness nerds at MIU did what scientists do best when left alone; repeat the tests, redo the research, measure again, go deeper. Vast quantities of data were pored over as the researchers related the FBI Crime Report, National and World Stock Index, Red Cross Data, the Conflict and Peace Data Bank, etc. to strange inventions of social science like the Fox-Jenkins ARIMA time series methodology and transfer function analyses just to name two of them.

THE FORMULA FOR SUPERRADIANCE

Maharishi began holding huge experiments in the form of national and international meetings of TM and TM-Sidhis practitioners called World Peace Assemblies, where from one to seven thousand would congregate for group meditations. The scientists learned new things. The coherent effects were strongest in the vicinity of the groups but extended everywhere. Measurable and statistically significant effects were found to extend to the nation or world according to a formula commonly used in physics: the intensity of a coherent effect generated is proportional to the square of the number of participants.

 

For example, a laser is a coherent system in which coherence is created in a small amount of the atoms by stimulated emission of radiation. The amount of atoms needed to behave coherently is the square root of one percent of the total population of atoms in the laser; this is what superradiance is - the propagation of orderliness throughout a system. Using 250 million as the population of the United States, an assembly of about 2000 would create a strong coherent influence that should be easily measured in the nation. The formula proved to be very useful as the national indicators for crime, health and creativity would markedly rise and fall as the numbers of TM Sidhis practitioners came and went to the various World Peace Assemblies.

LEFT KNOCKING IN NICARAGUA BY "THE HUMAN ECLIPSE"

Maharishi organized even more bold global experiments and called them World Peace Projects and sent assemblies of meditation nerds to the international 'hot spots' of 1978 - Rhodesia, Iran, Zambia and Nicaragua. What happened in Nicaragua was typical - as the nerd numbers increased, civil war deaths decreased and reconciliation efforts increased between the Sandinistas and Anastacio Somoza, who still controlled that Central American country until mid-1979. It was even noted that traffic accidents in Managua the capital, decreased during that period. I was there with friends Mark Smyth, Pepe Gordon, and Armando Pascacio. Presidents Carter and Somoza both fell over each other taking credit for those three months of relative peacefulness in the end of 1978. After that time however, there was no money left to continue the experiment so Somoza was asked by the TM group to support the continuation of the project. He declined, the superradiance group left and for the next six months the country slid inexorably into increasing disharmony. Somoza was quoted once in the papers as saying to the OAS (Organization of American States) mediators, "I have ceded as much as I will and if you don't like it you can all go to Hell!". The Prensa, the opposition newspaper began calling Somoza "the Human Eclipse". Although Managua was overtaken by the Sandinistas and Somoza fled the country the superradiance hypothesis emerged as strong as ever because of those three months during which relative peacefulness was created (Sept. - Dec. 1978).

REDUCED WAR DEATHS THROUGH SUPERRADIANCE

Back at MIU during the rest of the eighties data continued to pour in supporting the Maharishi effect. The superradiance numbers of meditation experts established on campus hovered between 1500 and 2000, just enough to keep the U.S. on a relatively prosperous and peaceful trend throughout the decade. The consciousness nerds continued their grind and by the late eighties the data was so vast and compelling that it started being published in increasingly prestigious scientific journals.

It was just getting harder to ignore such volume and quality of measured results. The social scientists at MIU had it down pat - before any major superradiance group assembled, letters would go out to the most prestigious institutes and universities saying something to the effect that "we are conducting a social experiment on such and such dates... we predict the following changes in these national trends, and the trends should revert to normal after these dates...and so on". The trend changes predicted were on such a grand scale - National crime rates, sickness rates and stock market trends - that in no way could the scientists embellish the data because it is a strict matter of public record. Time series analyses and other statistical tests would prove the changes to be directly caused by the superradiance groups with the probability of it being a random effect being less than one in several million!

LONG AWAITED RECOGNITION

The crowning achievement came in the end of 1988 when the bastion of the most conservative of Washington D.C. social scientists was penetrated: the highly prestigious Journal of Conflict Resolution published the results of a Middle East superradiance project. In this 1983 project (the IPPME), a superradiance group in Jerusalem increased quality of life indices in Israel and reduced war deaths and war intensity in Lebanon during the border war there. Five separate times during the 8 week test period the numbers of meditators rose to the necessary superradiance level (the square root of 1% of the population of the area - Israel, Lebanon, West Bank, and Gaza Strip) and each of the five times the composite quality of life index would rise. War intensity as measured by both war deaths and newspaper analyses had a corresponding inverse effect. Highly sophisticated statistical analyses revealed a causal effect from the meditator groups.

IS THE WORLD NOW READY FOR THEM? In 1993, the TM Movement announced to the world again a huge new social experiment. Another coherence-creeating group assembled in Washington DC to close their eyes and collectively create an influence that will decrease the crime rate, lighten the atmosphere and create a more coherent environment; something easily measured in crime and accident rates.

A RISK GREATER THAN ALL RISKS

 

As before, scholars and the press were invited to observe the progress of this Washington DC project. Basically, they were putting their reputation on the line again. If there are were no results or negative results (I.E. no change in crime rate or murder rate) then the TM Movement will have joined the ranks of Fleischman and Pons and proven themselves worthless in the eyes of the world press; a bunch of hacks. On the other hand, if the predicted result of a crime and murder rate drop occurs, then what will happen? Well, the crime rate did go down as predicted: 15% from the year before and 21% down from the predicted crime rate for that period of three months and what did we get? A couple of small mentions in newspapers and the crowning achievement - a Washington Post article that grudgingly admitted a "small" crime rate change not without certain reservations. Obviously I wasn't the only one scratching his head and wondering how, in the light of this repeatable, measurable evidence, the world hasn't beaten a path to our door; Carla Linton Brown scratched her head and then went out and did something. What follows are highlights from her Doctoral Thesis:

This 300 page Thesis is fascinating - She does a 'sociology of sociologists' in studying the reactions of numerous professionals to the sociological and scientific implications of the 'IPPME' study from 1988. IPPME is the International Peace Project in the Middle East which was published in the Journal of Conflict Resolution, a very highly regarded journal in it's field. The study showed that large TM and TM-Sidhis groups, practicing together daily, reduced social negativity such as crime (in and out of Jerusalem where the group was), war deaths, and war intensity in neighboring Lebanon. This study is one of fourteen of the 38 studies on Superradiance that were published. The IPPME study is the only one published in a mainstream journal within the conflict resolution field.

The mere fact that it was published represents a triumph of the careful scientific documentation of the Maharishi effect and it's results but as you may expect, this unorthodox approach to world peace is met with varying degrees of acceptance, from outright dismissal to guarded acceptance.

Graduate School of Education

Harvard University 1996, From the Doctoral Thesis of Carla Linton Brown -excerpts-

"...To the extent that further research might bear out these results, they would be of indisputable social and scientific value. But the findings were generally met with various levels of disbelief. At the time of publication, two reviewers articulated the dilemma: According to their scientific review the study was well done, but they questioned its premises in the strongest of terms. The lPPME research has stirred considerable controversy because the reported evidence appeared to statistically support premises which run counter to generally accepted understandings about behavioral phenomena (both personal and social) and mechanisms that can alter them.

"Professor of government David Edwards, who reviewed research that followed the IPPME research for the American Psychological Association in 1990, wrote that the findings were "startling."

"In study after study they have found that particular types of meditation by small groups of trained meditators has resulted in very substantial decreases in acts of violence, terrorism, and other societally negative phenomena in such places as Lebanon and Israel, and in U.S. Soviet relations."

"He pointed out that the concept of mind-over-matter violates an assumption that has conventionally guided social science, namely that "consciousness as such is not causal in human action." He explained that IPPME and related research posed two corollaries challenging these assumptions: "that collective consciousness is itself causal in the social world:" and most problematic of all in the history of science, "that action carried on in collective consciousness ... influences what we perceive to be material reality at a distance.''

"At the same time Edwards wrote that the research achieved "something most social theories cannot hope for, since they tend to be theories of conflict and violence rather than of their reduction." Even peace research, he wrote, "which focuses on theories of war, arms racing, conflict escalation, intergroup hostility ... evokes the counterproductive dynamic of legitimating ...violence." Noting that he was not affiliated with the researchers, Dr.-Edwards wrote:

"The claim can be made plausibly that the promised practical societal impact of this research significantly exceeds that of any other ongoing social-psychological research program. For this reason alone, the research along with the theory that informs it deserves the most serious evaluative consideration by the social science community."

"However, it has thus far been unable to achieve this consideration because the major social science presentation and publication avenues have been largely closed to it by their designated 'gatekeepers' or 'disciplinary mental hygienists' -- the organizers of professional conferences and the editors of major journals.''

"Though the lPPME research may counter conventional understandings and has not been given serious policy consideration, the study's authors have argued that its premises are not counter to Western

Thought, but, on the contrary, have been commonly assumed through much of its history. They have suggested that their empirical findings, benefiting from the precision of the methodological tools and meditation techniques currently available, might reintroduce concepts of collective consciousness raised by eminent early psychologists and sociologists such as William James, Gustav Fechner, and Emile Durkheim. They have written that quantum field theorists (including Schroedinger, Jeans, Eddington, Pauli, and D'Espagnat) anticipated the basis of a fundamental field theory of consciousness in suggesting, as Max Planck wrote, that consciousness is fundamental and matter is "derivative."

"As a teacher of the TM program and former student and administrator at Maharishi International University, which has incorporated the TM program into its curriculum, I have had the opportunity to examine the research and explore the techniques studied more closely. Whether or not I consider the technologies to be vaccinations against violence worthy of further study or a description of innate human capabilities will not concern me here. My interest is how people with little or none of my experience and training look at these ideas as expressed in scientific research, in a compressed time frame, and in relation to existing conceptual frameworks.

"My concern reaches beyond what the individual respondents told me, to their discussion within the specialized world of foreign policy. Their decision about whether and how to consider a specialized scientific inquiry such as the IPPME study is in a sense a group discussion, because each participant referred to what Gregory Clark termed a "functioning consensus," involving the inescapable fact (identified by Aristotelian scholar William Grimaldi) of "large complexes of pre-existing convictions and assumptions" on levels of common sense, "cultural and social ideology," and specialized knowledge.29

 

"Clark explained that for Plato and Aristotle, the purpose of rhetoric was the collective determination of what is true and best for the community and suggested that open, communitarian deliberation is ideal. Though it is often adversarial, science provides participants such an opportunity. It gives the scientist and the end-user the chance to test what nature says, rather than what they or the larger functioning consensus expect it to say. It is perhaps even more crucial that community members put aside their predilections when they consider scientific information from new or unusual perspectives, because the new or the unusual is often the source of scientific and practical breakthroughs. But it is precisely the new and unusual that must also be given the most careful scrutiny.

"The communication of research information to the policy maker begins with peer review and requires of the reviewers that they balance innovation with quality. The political nature of peer review can also involve competition for resources and give greater weight to the functioning consensus than fresh conjectures. Innovative research may encounter efforts to mark it off as illegitimate, as has often been the case in the history of science. How reviewers approach the innovative research information - how they weigh what is true and best for the community within the context of disagreements about what is or is not legitimate -- has often determined the course of science and civilization.

"Journalists on whom decision makers rely to keep them apprised of research information, as well as the scope of the policy debate and events in foreign policy as they break, sometimes miss the larger story: they get wedded to past assumptions. Those who cover the daily playing out of aggression in protracted conflict may be hard-pressed to consider ideas that speak of the more abstract aspects of human nature, especially as they are conveyed within scientific research.

"Policy makers in Congress must explicitly weigh consensus when considering new ideas and may choose to attend to scientific information only when it pays to do so. It is of interest to understand how they determine whether to do so. Diplomats are constrained by the policy decisions of the past which have tended to be conducted without the aid of science, while at the same time facing expanding demands on their judgment.

"Approximately 2300 years since Plato and Aristotle wrote, the ways in which the community decides what is true and best is perhaps even more in need of understanding. Sociologists of knowledge application have been concerned with whether investment in social research is adequately used and how it could better be used. Sociologist Carol Weiss has focussed these questions at the juncture where professionals, who work in complex, multilayered organizations, decide what information to consider. Her research has indicated that professionals value research that challenges the status quo.

 

They tended to draw their conclusions based on their own experience and judgments about scientific quality. My inquiry attempts to extend Weiss' research with exploration of professionals' filtering of research information with premises that many may perceive as far more challenging to the status quo than the research she used. My dissertation is intended as a contribution to the understanding of how professionals judge social science information as well as how they confront new perspectives."

Appendix A: International Peace Project in the Middle East: The Effects of the Maharish's Technology of the Unified Field - Journal of Conflict Resolution, 32 (4), Dec. 1988, 776-812. D.W. Orme-Johnson, C.N. Alexander, J.L. Davies, H.M. Chandler and W.E. Larimore SUMMARY1 Prepared by J.L. Davies. See original paper for research citations and references

This social experiment tests a new theory and technology for alleviating violent conflict on a national and international scale through reducing societal stress. Many theorists in the field of conflict resolution identify stress as a primary source of violent conflict. For example, White (1984) argues that in an environment where tensions are high, efforts for peaceful resolution of conflict can succeed only in the context of concurrent steps for "drastic tension reduction."

Transcendental Meditation (TM) and the TM-Sidhi Program have been found effective in reducing stress in the individual. These are mental techniques introduced by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi for experiencing more silent, less excited levels of awareness. This experience in TM has been characterized by Wallace (1970) and subsequent researchers as a psychophysiological state of "restful alertness" distinct from the ordinary states of waking, dreaming, and sleeping.

Marked stress reduction and enhanced personal development as a result of TM practice have been described in several meta-analyses comparing TM with rest and other forms of relaxation or meditation (Eppley et al., 1984; Ferguson, 1981). Long-term reductions in physical illness rates, more coherent psychophysiological functioning and enhanced capacity to cope with environmental stressors have also been reported (Alexander, Langer, et. al., in press; Brooks and Scarano, 1985; Orme-Johnson, 1973, 1987).

Given the reported pragmatic outcomes of the TM techniques in reducing stress and fostering development and coherence in individual functioning, an important empirical question is whether groups of individuals create similar effects of reduced stress and increased coherence in a larger population.

PRIOR RESEARCH

Thirty-eight studies 1 have indicated that when a relatively small number of individuals (approximately 1% of a population) practices the TM technique, or when an even smaller group (as little as the square root of 1% of a population) practices the more advanced TM Sidhi program together, the combined coherent influence is enough to alleviate built-up stress, as reflected in reduced violence and more positive trends for the society as a whole. Significant impacts of the TM and TM-Sidhi program on quality of life on the city, state, national, and international levels have been reported in indices such as decreased political and criminal violence, accidents, unemployment, and suicide rates.

THE STUDY

 

In August and September, 1983, when Israel was heavily involved in fighting throughout the southern half of Lebanon, it was predicted that collective practice of the TM and TMSidhi techniques in Jerusalem would generate such an influence of coherence, varying in extent with the size of the meditating group, to cover Jerusalem, Israel, and even Lebanon, resulting in a calming of the conflict there. Consistent with prior studies, we hypothesized that the group practice would influence the coherence of a population equal to 100 times the square of the number of participants, plus 100 times the number meditating independently of the group in that population. The number of people participating daily in the group TM and TM-Sidhi practice in Jerusalem ranged from 65 to 241.

The effect of their group practice was tested for three different group and population sizes with respect to the following variables: for Jerusalem -- automobile accidents, fires, and total crime; for Israel, including the occupied territories, -- crime, stock market, and national mood; and for Israel and Lebanon combined&emdash;war deaths and war intensity.

Dependent variable measures were based on publicly available data sources. These and the experimental hypotheses were chosen before the experiment, and recorded with independent review boards of scientists in both North America and Israel. The experimental period&emdash; Aug. 1-Sept. 30 -- was arbitrarily selected with respect to the social variables studied. At the end of the first and second month of the experiment before any analysis of substantive data, the daily numbers of participants in group practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program were reported to review boards. The level of participation in the group rose gradually over the first two weeks of the experiment, remained high for the next 13 days, and then fluctuated at a generally lower level for the second month.

ANALYSIS

In order to control for pre-existing trends, cycles, and seasonal effects, including the effects of temperature and holidays, Box-Jenkins time series analytic techniques were used. The effects of changes in the size of the group on eight dependent variables were studied as follows, for:

 

Location Dependent Variables

*Jerusalem: automobile accidents, fires, and total crime;

* Israel: crime, stock market, and national mood derived from news content analysis

*Lebanon war deaths of all factions and war intensity derived from news content analysis.

The above variables were combined into equally weighted composite indices for Jerusalem, Israel, Lebanon, and further into a single overall composite index, since it is generally the practice in quality of life research to combine variables into composite indices to provide a more reliable, broader based measure of quality of life.

RESULTS: Consistent with the experimental hypotheses, increase in the TM-Sidhi group size was followed by significant changes in all dependent variables using at least one of the two methods of assessment. All four composite quality of life indices changed significantly in the anticipated direction. As predicted, the composite indices for Jerusalem and Israel were influenced by smaller TM-Sidhi groups (122) whereas Lebanon was not significandy affected until the group size reached 197.

Impact assessment analyses comparing days with the lowest and highest levels of participation within the two month period indicated, for example, that war intensity in Lebanon decreased by an estimated 45%, war deaths by an estimated 76% (from 40.1 deaths to 9.7 deaths per day, Foss), and total crime in Israel decreased by an estimated 12%. In Jerusalem auto accidents decreased 34% fron 3.9 per day to 2.5. For 13 days when the group size was experimentally raised to a high level the average of war deaths per day was 1.5 compared with 33.7 for the period preceding and following.

If a common effect was being generated simultaneously across all these different measures, then the signal-to-noise ratio would be increased by aggregating the variables. Averaging the standardized variables would add the common variance among the variables and, on the average, cancel to zero the random components. As predicted, the mean effect size for the individual variables (.26) was less than for the same variables aggregated into three composites (.43), and the aggregation of all variables into one composite variable produced the largest effect size (.69). This finding supports the hypothesis that the TM-Sidhi group was creating a generalized, underlying coherence effect common to all measures.

 

In every case transfer function analysis indicated that changes in the war and quality of life variables occur immediately or shortly after changes in group size - never the reverse.

 

That is, group size did not change in response to improving or deteriorating social conditions. This pattern of results suggests that increases in group size were responsible, as predicted, for the observed beneficial impact, with the primary changes being immediate (a lag of O or 1 days), and lesser, delayed effects being presumably due to the indirect impact of actions and decisions taken earlier.

 

The effects of holidays and temperature as well as all seasonal components such as weekend effects, drifts and trends in the dependent variables were explicitly controlled for using standard time series analytic procedures. While formal randomization of high participation days was not possible for practical reasons common to all sociological experiments, high and low participation days were found to be, in effect, randomly spaced. It is therefore unlikely that the results could be explained by any unknown variable following the same irregular pattern as high and low participation days. Since completion of this study, seven additional groups using the TM-Sidhi techniques, and large enough for a predicted reduction in armed conflict in Lebanon over several days or weeks, have been brought together. In every case, a significant positive impact in alleviating violence has been observed.

 

1. Ten of the 38 have been reported in four refereed articles in the following journals:Journal of Crime and Justice 1981, Vol. IV. 25~5.Journal of Mind and Behavior. 1987, VoL8, N.1. 67-104; 1988, Vol.9, N.4, 457-485.Social Indicators Research 1990, 22, 399418.

2. The population sizes were: 1) Jerusalem 429,000, including the Arab population; 2) Israel

5,304,000,including the occupied territories: and 3) Israel and Lebanon combined&emdash;7,905,000. The critical group size for these three populations was 65, 122, and 197 respectively, taking into account the 38,000 independent TM participants throughout Israel and 2,000 in Lebanon.

3. Two Box Jenkins ARIMA time series methodologies were used: impact assessment analysis to study the predicted impact of various group sizes and transfer function analysis to address the question of causality&emdash;whether changes in group sizes led changes in quality of life or vice versa These techniques have been used for two decades in business, engineering, and economics and are now the most widely used and accepted in the social sciences for statistical analysis of the inter relationships among variables changing over time.

4. News content analysis was accomplished using the Jerusalem Post, by independent raters unaware of story dates, using a 7-point Likert scale for affect and 5-point Conflict Intensity Scale based on Azar's

COPDAB scales.

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