An extraordinary experiment has been going on for the last thirteen years in Princeton University. It is called Global Consciousness Project. It has placed 70 special devices (nodes) in computers across the world. The device is a small gadget which measures the vibrations of a single atom. In measuring its vibrations, it converts it into pulses. Random pulses are generated from the vibrations of single atom. Done across 70 countries in the world, the computers record these random pulses coming from single atom, gather them and send them over to Princeton where 65 streams of random pulses are combined and you get one gigantic, random fluctuation. Computers then measure their randomness. Is it more random or less random? It plots a graph which measures how random these pulses are. The graph fluctuates, less random, more random, and suddenly the graph goes up, because all the randomness in all these atoms is becoming less and less, and suddenly the atoms are synchronizing and connected with with each other.
Whenever an event in the world which connected human beings intensely occurred, the randomness of these atoms became less and the graphs arose. When the tsunami hit the Bay Bengal during 2004, thousands of people died. But the graph didnt change. Fifteen minutes later, when the news of the tsunami spread, people began to think about it and feel in their hearts, the pain, suffering, the graph started growing up. As the people connected, the graph measured the connection. As the connection gradually spread out and dissipated, the graph also came down.
When millions are watching soccer, as the striker kicks towards the goal, all the minds are suddenly concentrating on the possibility of the goal, and the graph shoots up. As the goal is hit, the minds of so many people relax and the graph falls down.
When there is a live broadcast of the Oscar awards, a billion people are watching the host pulls out the paper and says “And the winner is..” and stares at the audience, just to build the tension. A billion people are connected to the point of tension and the graph goes up.And when the name is spoken, the graph goes down. As human minds get connected, the vibrations of atoms are becoming less chaotic, less random.
The state of mind of all humanity connected, whether football or cinema awards or tsunami, is affecting the atoms of the earth, materially in the electronic circuits in the soil, and in the air. When we are chaotic, the atoms become chaotic. When we are in harmony, the atoms vibrate in harmony. And this is measured by hard physical science, with the most objective instrument. This is the entry point where we can see the material part of science is looking beyond something else.
When the twin towers of the World Trade Center collapsed on September 11, 2001, the graph went up the highest ever in the history of the experiment and stayed northwards for the longest period ever. It arose not when the attack happened, but when the news was broadcast and people began to connect in their minds and hearts. If you remember those horrific moments, we felt connected, for few moments, with the whole world, in anger and disgust towards the terrorist attacks.
The most interesting part of the graph was, it started growing up not when the attack took place but four hours before the attack. How do you explain that? It is hard to explain this in the domain of material reality. We can attempt to understand it in the domain of the psychological shift already happening in humanity before we knew it in our circuit minds.
Our circuit mind is a small fragment of the larger, deeper, underlying mind which already knows things before they can happen because it is the support for all things which happen, the cause of all things which happen. In a sense, humanity was bracing itself for the shock of that impact and somewhere inside we knew that it was about to happen.
If you observe carefully in your dream state, in the dew drop moments before waking up, you might remember an experience. Sometimes, you are awakened by a loud sound and you wake up with a shock. If you had carefully observed, you might have observed that you started waking up before you heard the sound. Have you noticed that? Before the ears could hear the sound, something in the deeper realm of consciousness knew the sound was coming and it already started waking up and half way up it got the shock of the noise.
At the underlying layer, we are already connected. It is possible as our own mind is the universal mind. Or rather, we are a part of it. Because of our relationship with it, it is possible for us to consciously become aware of it and sync ourselves. Global consciousness project offers us one way to conceive this underlying reality within the precincts of our cognitive mind using indirect measurements. If were to take this logically one step further, the way we think and feel affects the whole of earth, not just the part of the Earth. Can we say then, perhaps, the earthquake, which represents disharmony, could be influenced by our state of our mind? Could we say perhaps, the rains would be influenced by our state of mind? If the vibrations of all the atoms are changed by the way we think, then surely the particular balance of atomic interactions may also be changed. Is it then so surprising when people claim that they can make rain happen ?
Ancient Indian scriptures often talk about the indicators of a good king and his governance. One of the indicators is that the rains come on time. It’s only a measure. What does it mean? In the collective consciousness, the energy which is disharmonious and chaotic causes disharmony in our minds and hearts. People are unhappy. All of them invariably affect the normal rhythms of nature. When we are in harmony, nature around us also shares happiness and grows in happiness.
Based on Sraddhalu Ranade's Address at Inner Dimensions of Climate Change conference.