From the July 2000 Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients (p 20)
The Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) [is] a laboratory founded by Dr Robert Jahn in 1979, and managed by developmental psychologist Brenda Dunne. PEAR focuses on studying the effects of the human mind and human desire on the creation of reality. Jahn was the Dean of Princeton's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and professor of aerospace science in 1977, when an undergraduate student asked him to act as faculty advisor for his project. The student wanted to design an electronic device to study the influence that thought has on physical matter -- psychokinesis. Jahn was 'highly skeptical' about the project but agreed. The project was a success. Even though he knew it might affect his career, Jahn decided that the implications and questions that the research presented were too important to ignore.
PEAR studies use random-event generators, machines that randomly display binary (heads/tails, yes/no, 0/1) information. The subjects for these studies are regular people with no special psychic abilities. Subjects are asked to focus on an intention and write the intention down before beginning the session. The intention may be to increase the number of positive responses, negative responses, or to create an even, 'base-line' response. 'By May 1996 ... 50 million experimental trials had been performed, containing more than 3 billion bits of binary ... information' [writes an investigator].
The trials have shown that, while most operators did not have 'individually significant results', combining the scores from many attempts shows a definite correlation between the stated intention and the machine's result. Distance does not affect the results. Operators can sit next to the machine or be thousands of miles away. The most successful subjects created a bond with the machine. They talked of 'surrendering their sense of identity to merge with the machine into a unified system; of exchanging roles with the machine; of 'falling in love' with it or having 'fun' with it'.
In addition to these trials with individuals, PEAR has found that groups in which the members focus on a common object or event create a consciousness field that causes the random-event generators to become less random. More than 20 studies have been conducted by Dr Dean Radin, the former head of consciousness studies at the University of Nevada (Las Vegas), the PEAR team, and Professor Dick Bierman at the University of Amsterdam. These studies show that all kinds of physical systems make subtle movements toward order when groups of people share a single focus.
'We are talking about the role of human desire, human intention, and human will on the way the world works. There's an interconnectedness and there's a subtle influence potentiality here that legitimizes prayer, that legitimizes hoping, that legitimizes creativity', says Dr Jahn. 'you don't have to accept [prayer or interconnection] cold turkey on the basis of authoritarian dogma. It can be demonstrated in the lab.'
* * * Back to the Home Page of John "Birdman" Bryant, the World's Most Controversial Author * * *