19 November 2009

Towards Collective Harmony

One percent of the population practicing the Transcendental Meditation would produce measurable improvements in the quality of life for the whole population.

Such was boldly predicted by Maharishi Yogi in 1960. However, this phenomenon was first noticed in 1974 and published in 1976. It was found that when 1% of the community practiced the Transcendental Meditation program, then the average crime rate came down by an average of 16%. This phenomenon was named the Maharishi Effect then. Later, the meaning of the term was extended to cover the influence generated by the group practice of the TM-Sidhi program. Now, the Maharishi Effect could be defined as the influence of coherence and positivity on the social and natural environment generated by the practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi programs.

The first statistical analysis of the effects of the TM-Sidhi program was published in 1987. They presented a decrease in violent crimes in Washington D.C., and total crimes in Metro Manila and Delhi by an average of 11%. Further research has confirmed the presence and the universality of the Maharishi Effect.

David Edwards Ph.D., Professor of Government, University of Texas at Austin, says, about the Maharishi Effect, “I think the claim can be plausibly made that the potential impact of this research exceeds that of any other ongoing social or psychological research program. It has survived a broader array of statistical tests than most research in the field of conflict resolution. This work and the theory that informs it deserve the most serious consideration by academics and policy makers alike.”

The basis of the Maharishi Effect is collective consciousness. This involves the sum total of the individual consciousness of the people in a specified group, be it a community or even a nation. Individual consciousness is said to be the basic unit of collective consciousness, influencing collective consciousness and being in turn influenced by it.

Maharishi states, “Just as the consciousness of an individual determines the quality of his thought and behavior, so also there exists another type of consciousness for society as a whole; a collective consciousness for each family, city, state, or nation, having its own reality and the possibility of growth. The quality of collective consciousness of a society is a direct and sensitive reflection of the level of consciousness of its individual members.”

Individual consciousness and collective consciousness hence bear a reciprocal relationship. As collective consciousness is created by the individuals within the group, when the individual consciousness grows, collective consciousness expands.

As a result of this reciprocal relationship between individual and collective consciousness, a group of people practicing the Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi programme will be able to influence harmony to collective consciousness, thereby enabling the entire population to act more coherently and harmoniously and in one with Natural Law. On this basis, Maharishi has demonstrated the potential for every nation to create invincibility for itself and for all its citizens.

Realizing this power of thought, especially collective thought, Monish Dhawan has seeded the idea of “I Want a Positive Headline, a mass Movement, which aims at convincing the media to provide more positive headlines in an effort towards impacting greater well-being and happiness for each individual and the world.

The logic is simple. The media deeply influences collective thought through the way it portrays news, and affects billions simultaneously through its extensive reach. And this collective thought is what creates the reality we see around.

At present, there are more negative news headlines that cover the front pages of newspapers, and reports of mayhem and terrorism on news channels. All this leads to a collective negativity that manifests itself as ill health, depression and a loss of hope. This in turn creates the negative world that we have become familiar with.

However, the converse is also true. If the media were to portray more positive news, then it would generate positivity among the millions, helping to build a happier, healthier reality.

All it needs is for people to choose for this to happen. “I Want a Positive Headline” gives you that chance for being part of the millions that can come together and cohesively demand for a change in the way the media projects news, ask for more positive headlines with the view that this will bring about a positive change in people and the environment that their collective thoughts will create. It empowers you to change your reality, one thought at a time.
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