Modern society often views practices like meditation as positive, yet not that outwardly impactful. There can certainly be a big impact on the individual practitioner, but it’s often considered a more personal experience and not something that extends beyond the physical body and mind to those who don’t do it. What many may be surprised to learn is that studies have shown that group meditation does have the potential to influence the world beyond the individual.
Science Studies Group Meditation
A study was conducted in 1978 that uncovered what we now call the Maharishi Effect. A total of 7,000 people came together to meditate as a group for 3 weeks. They focused on producing a positive effect on the city they were meditating in. Researchers reviewed the data and found that there was a correlation between the meditation and negative events. There were fewer suicides and car accidents as a result of the meditation.
In fact the experiment was so powerful that there appeared to be a global impact as well. Terrorist activity dropped by 72% while global deaths, violence and crime stats were reduced by 16% according to EWAO.com.
This wasn’t the only instance of group meditation that was recorded as having a positive effect. A study performed daily in a two month period in Israel during August – September 1983 revealed that war-related deaths in Lebanon went down by 76% during the meditation event. The more people that participated in the meditation, the greater the positive impact.
Another study was conducted in Wales. Merseyside in 1987 held the 3rd highest crime rate of the 11 biggest metro areas in Wales and England. After group meditation, the crime rate dropped steadily until 1992 when it reached its lowest point during that period. It came in at 40% less than predicted levels based on national trends.
A total of 50 separate studies have been completed to test the reality behind the Maharishi Effect. The results show that group meditation can have far reaching benefits. The Journal of Crime and Justice published many of these studies, further validating their findings.
Group Meditation Can Be a Force for Good
It’s impossible to deny the fact that group meditation does have an impact. When many people come together, they have the power to make the world a better place. While these studies included many participants, it’s important to also understand the effect meditation can have on the individual. It’s possible to change your life, and even the world, through the power of meditation.