How brain coherence radiates across a population


Brainwave coherence increased in three individuals exactly when 2,500 people meditated 1,170 miles away.


This fascinating study demonstrates that coherent brain waves, produced during Transcendental Meditation and the more advanced TM-Sidhi programme, influence other people. The influence of coherent brain waves on other people’s brains is radiated even at a great distance and without any other physical interaction taking place.

Is consciousness a fundamental field of intelligence?

The underlying theory that predicts that meditation has a broadcasting effect on the surrounding population is based on the understanding that consciousness is a fundamental unbounded non-localised field that connects us all. The researchers in this study reasoned that if consciousness really is a field, then changes in individual consciousness would also effect the overall field and therefore other people as well.

In other words changes in one person’s individual consciousness would register with other individuals elsewhere. It is this ‘field’ quality of consciousness that enables the powerful Maharishi effect (1% effect) and the even more powerful Super Radiance effect to take place.

What is the Maharishi effect?

The Maharishi effect is achieved when 1% of a given population practise Transcendental Meditation (TM). At the point when 1% of a community, town, city state or even nation learn TM, then negative trends such as high crime rates suddenly start to decline and positive trends start to grow.

Super Radiance is achieved when the square root of 1% of a population practise the more advanced meditation known as the TM-Sidhi programme together in a group. Read more about the Super Radiance effect …

When these numbers of meditators are established they not only create brainwave coherence for themselves but also create improved coherence in the collective consciousness of the whole population.

From previous sociological studies we know that this collective coherence results in an immediate and significant drop in a range of negative and incoherent behaviour such as social disorder, warfareterrorismcrime, accidents and so on. At the same time there is a commensurate rise in more positive activity such as business start-ups, increased employment etc.

Using EEG to trace changes in consciousness

Researchers had already observed that EEG is sensitive to changes in individual consciousness (EEG stands for electroencephalogram; essentially an EEG is a recording of the ‘brainwaves’ or the electrical activity of the brain). So, in this study EEG readings were used to test the idea that, if consciousness were an unbounded field, then fluctuations in this field would be detected by EEG readings between different individuals.

The researchers speculated that subjects under test might show synchronised rises and falls in their EEGs readings in the same way as corks rise and fall together on the same wave.

In 1979, an opportunity arose to carry out this experiment during a major TM-based peace project in Amherst USA. The project involved 2,500 TM-Sidhas meditating together in one group (See research summary 9). This group was large enough to create the Super Radiance effect for the whole of the USA. The researchers anticipated that this meant changes in consciousness within the Amherst group should be reflected in  synchronised changes in EEG readings elsewhere in the US.

As such, the experiment was designed to see if individuals in Fairfield Iowa, 1,170 miles away from the Amherst group would register changes in their EEG readings at the same time the 2,500 were meditating together (Inter-subject EEG coherence).

Inter-subject EEG coherence was measured between three healthy individuals located in Fairlfield during six experimental periods. These experimental periods occurred during the exact time when the group in Amherst were meditating.

In addition the researchers carried out the same measurements on the same
three subjects during six-control periods when the 2,500 group were not meditating. This was a blind study in that the subjects were unaware of the timing of the Amherst group’s activities.

Research results

As predicted there was a significant increase in the level of inter-subject EEG coherence during the experimental periods in comparison with the control periods. In other words, the subjects’ brainwave coherence was seen to increase considerably more on experimental days compared to control days. (p=0.02)

Research title

Intersubject EEG coherence: Is consciousness a field?

Research authors

Orme Johnson DW, Dillbeck MC, Wallace RK;


International Journal of Neuroscience 16: 1982, pp 203 ­- 209

Scientific Research on Maharishi’s Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi programme, Collected papers volume 3 paper 222


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