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The Use of Transcendental Meditation to Promote

This article is an electronic version of an article originally published in Cultic Studies Journal, 1986, Volume 3, Number 1, pages 97-102. Please keep in mind that the pagination of this electronic reprint differs from that of the bound volume. This fact could affect how you enter bibliographic information in papers that you may write.

The Use of Transcendental Meditation to Promote Social Progress in Israel

Mordecai Kaffman

Abstract

The author explains why his organization refused to collaborate with Transcendental Meditation in a research project concerning the effects of TM on improving Israeli social, economic, and political conditions. The methods of TM researchers are dismissed as unscientific, and their claims of positive results in the Israeli context are deemed unconvincing. The TM theory of the "unified field" is no more credible than was Blondot's 1913 claim -- supported by many papers from his collaborators -- that metals gave off N-rays.

The following letter was sent some time ago to a research team that conducted a study in Jerusalem in 1983. Their study was designed to explore the efficacy of a program of collective meditation (TM-Sidhi) in solving social and international conflicts. I am submitting the letter to this journal because a large number of TM-sponsored publications have described their Israeli experiment as an unqualified success and as proof of the doctrine propounded by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and his followers. In this letter, I challenge these claims.

Dear Sirs:

Some months ago I wrote you on behalf of the Research Department of the Kibbutz Child and Family Clinic, of which I am the director, spelling out in detail the reasons for our unanimous decision to reject your proposal to conduct a collaborative research project within the framework of a kibbutz on the effects of a Transcendental Meditation-Sidhi program on the resolution of socioeconomic problems and international conflicts involving Israel. I wrote you then that to our regret we found in the material you sent us no support whatsoever for your repeated claim that research projects already carried out have verified the hypothesis that "the square-root of one percent of Sidhis in any given national population will reduce negative social trends, improve the self-reliance, quality of life, and level of harmony in that society as a whole...”

We could not take seriously the "proofs" which described places where a positive correlation was found between TM practice and a temporary reduction in the rate of crime and of traffic accidents. This is, at best, an anecdotal, unscientific type of "proof" based on a conceptual error. Even if the research shows a positive correlation between particular indicators of social progress and the Sidhi activity over some period of time, there will of course be no proof of any causal connection. To illustrate this point: I checked out one year, in which I found in Israel significant changes for the better in a large number of the indicators listed in the research proposal. (Every one of these changes was probably due to many quite complicated factors.) I also noted that the same year a colored monthly magazine for children made its appearance in Israel for the first time, and so did the first group of the Hare Krishna sect. Would it enter the mind of any responsible social scientist to connect the changes in the indicators of "social progress" with the appearance in Israel of the children's magazine or the Hare Krishna group?

Incidentally, the conception of a unified field of natural energy affecting individual and social levels -- the energy proceeding in accord with physical models -- is reminiscent of Franz Anton Mesmer's theory (1775) about the reciprocal relationship between the forces of nature and the human body. But Mesmer's theory looks more realistic and easier to grasp than the doctrine of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who keeps declaring, with no clear rationale behind his words, that there exists "a technique (TM) for the expansion of consciousness ... not merely to the stars but beyond ... The TM program needs to be taken up only by one percent of the population and the enlightened social consciousness will spread spontaneously throughout the other ninety-nine percent...” (Scientific Research on the TM Program, Collected Papers, Vol. 1, p.2). It is not clear how these exact percentages were arrived at. In my eyes, Mesmer's theory is explained in a manner which comes closer to the accepted rules of logic than does the "unified field" theory. According to Mesmer, there exists an all-pervasive medium, a cosmic fluid with magnetic qualities that permeates the nervous system of living organisms as well as all inanimate objects. The only trouble with Mesmer's assumptions -- as is well known -- is that they have received no confirmation whatever in the course of the 200 years that have elapsed since they were first formulated and presented. Similarly, the assumption of TM about “an unbounded pure consciousness ... which is the ultimate source of creativity, of energy, of harmony, and of growth for man" (ibid.), which passes from one human body into space and is absorbed from there by other people situated at a distance, requires proof. It seems to us that whoever is interested in verifying this hypothesis ought to plan a series of systematic research projects in small groups and in small communities, under carefully controlled conditions, before undertaking a project on a nationwide scale. Obviously, if the limited research were to establish that there does exist extrasensory unbounded energy which allows interhuman communication without the intervention of the subject's ordinary sensory channels, this would amount to a scientific solution to the controversy as to the existence of paranormal (ESP) phenomena. Scientists who will succeed in providing scientific proof for the existence of ESP forces will no doubt gain great international fame for a discovery unmatched by any other in the history of man. It would then certainly be justified to check -- not only in Israel, but all over the world -- how the individual capabilities which were developed through TM exercises of one kind or another are likely to pass into space and to affect areas such as peace and national security, the economy, the quality of life, and the like.

In the meantime I have received your response to our critical remarks regarding the design and the methods of research and evaluation which you proposed. I have read with great care the revised version of your proposed research project, aiming to examine the validity of the Guru Maharishi's hypothesis that the collective practice of TM at the Sidhi level of about 200 persons (the square-root of 1% of Israel's population) would bring to Israel positive social change in the quality of life, in economic self-reliance, in the frequency of acts of violence and disorder, in military hostilities and in international relations. In what follows I wish to take up a number of concrete questions which emphasize the considerable essential differences in our respective views of the subject.

1. In the revised version of your project you claim to have decided to examine and select "in collaboration with Israeli scientists the potential measures of the Index of National Progress according to the criteria of their availability, reliability, and degree of acceptance in Israel as unambiguous indicators of national progress." Only a few days after this solemn declaration, made in July 1983, you began implementing your research project on your own, in full disregard of the promise you had just made. Indeed, as early as the beginning of August 1983 the first group of meditators was brought together in a Jerusalem hotel.

2. I am glad to note that we agree at least with regard to one point, namely, that simple correlational data do not constitute proof of causality, that changes in the "indicators of national progress,” whether in the positive or negative direction, prove nothing whatever as to the causal association with the collective practice of TM. I am likewise fully ready to accept your added remark that "a necessary condition for establishing an abiding lawful relationship between variables ... is the replicated finding of such an association across such conditions as film, place and unity of analysis." However, when I wrote you in my previous letter that, having examined carefully a number of kibbutzim where up to 10% of the population were engaged in daily TM practice, no improvement regarding a series of social economic, and health indicators of progress was found, I received from you the surprising answer that no positive result from TM practice is to be expected with regard to a population smaller than 10,000. To be perfectly honest I failed to follow the argument in your letter as to why TM practice influences populations larger than 10,000, but has no influence whatsoever on a kibbutz, with a population of 600 to 10000. The only thing that is clear to me, if one is to judge by what is happening in the kibbutz, is that TM does not work with any consistency “across such conditions as time, space and unit of analysis.” However, even your claim that TM will influence population concentrations larger than 10,000 souls has found no confirmation in our experience in Israel. For quite a long time a group of 25 - 35 persons (the Pelech-Ishad group) was given the opportunity to engage in TM activity (at Sidhi level) -- first, for a whole year, at kibbutz Ein-Dor, in the vicinity of the city of Afula (in the Jizael Valley), and later in Western Galilee, in the vicinity of the town of Ma'alot. This group of meditators constitutes the square root of I% of a population of 60,000 to 120,000. We examined with great care whether this highly trained group, that was engaged in group TM on the Sidhi level for at least five hours each day, did bring about any improvement in the socio-economic conditions of the population in the group's immediate geographic vicinity. (Did you not write us that "the effects should be strongest in closest geographic proximity to the group"?) But, nothing doing! No improvement was noted in the region or in the immediate proximity of the TM practitioners, not even in a single one of the variables examined. Quite the contrary: during the period of the TM group's activity the Lebanon war broke out in the immediate vicinity, and the economic situation in Israel in general and in the area in question in particular, took a marked turn for the worse. Of course, far be it from me to blame the TM activity for these negative developments, but these examples point clearly to the fact that the correlation of which we spoke, between the collective TM practice and the beneficial changes in society, did not reveal itself in the specific cases we examined, when -- unlike what happened in the studies on which you base your conclusion -- the data were collected and recorded by objective investigators in no way connected with the TM movement.

3. 1 regret that I have to state in unequivocal terms that the research group from the U.S., headed by Drs. David Orme-Johnson and Charles Alexander, which undertook to execute the International Peace Project worked in a very dubious manner as far as the validity and reliability of their methods of research and evaluation were concerned. Furthermore, they broke promises they made, both orally and in writing, to the Israeli National Review Board and to me personally, as to observance of the rules that would insure the objective nature of the investigation. In your research proposal you stated explicitly: "The precise predictions of the study, dates, number of participants, and location of the group will be made available to Review Board members in Israel and North America. This will eliminate the possibility of claiming responsibility for outcome after the fact without adequate evidence." During their meeting with me on August 15, 1983 -- i.e., at about the beginning of the project -- Drs. Orme-Johnson and Alexander likewise promised to send to me in advance "the precise predictions" of the positive changes expected in the indicators of social progress, as compared to baseline data. Furthermore, the Israeli National Board and I were supposed to be given in advance detailed information as to the number of meditators for each day of the trial. At our August 1983 meeting we all agreed  'that without this information being available in advance there would be no way of confirming its veracity post factum, nor would it be possible to examine carefully the claims as to the correlation of the number of TM practitioners with the changes in the Index of Social Change.

Furthermore, I was glad to have received at the time your written assurance that you "completely agree regarding the need for research of this nature to be independently monitored." I was even more inclined to believe in the serious nature of your research when I learned that you established contact with an outstanding scientist Professor Louis Guttman, the head of the Israel Institute of Applied Social Research, and received an offer from him that his Institute become involved in examining the baseline data, the findings, and the results of your research, in order to ensure the objective nature of the project and the trustworthiness of its reporting. However, soon afterwards I learned that, for reasons known only to yourselves, you decided to ignore Professor Guttman's proposal. Moreover, I was greatly disappointed to learn that there was no truth whatsoever in your claim that outstanding Israeli professionals had agreed to be included in the National Review Board and would be actively involved in the conduct of the project, I inquired from each one of the members of the "Israeli National Review Board" whether they were indeed personally involved in any phase of the execution of the project, in determining the indicators, or the collection and examination of the data. They all, without exception, replied in to the negative. Moreover, Prof. Joseph Neumann to whom you referred as "Senior Research Collaborator”) told me that he played no active role in the research at all. He was no more than an observer on the sideline, in a subject which is outside his professional competence, but he too -- like Prof. Guttman -- found it necessary to suggest to you that you send all the data to statisticians not involved in the project It is regrettable that Prof. Neumann's suggestion was also left unanswered.

I was very unpleasantly surprised to note that contrary to your promises and to the accepted procedures in the scientific world, the "positive results" of your research were made public by way of the mass media, without the knowledge or approval of the Israeli National Review Board. In fact Drs. Orme-Johnson and Alexander called a press conference in Tel-Aviv in mid-October of 1983, at which they reported on the research project carried out in Israel by 200 volunteers, who collectively practiced "the technology of the unified field" in line with the teachings of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The assembled newspapermen were informed that it was proven that a direct relation existed between the number of persons involved in the "technology of the unified field" and the number of dead in the Lebanon War, the number of road accidents, the number of fires, the fluctuations of the stock market and the level of the "collective morale." It was stated specifically that during the times when the group involved in TM practice was at least 200 strong, the number of war dead dropped, the general feeling in Israeli society improved, and there was a measured change for the better in a number of variables that determine the quality of life and social progress. Apparently the learned researchers found their "accomplishments" to be so strongly significant that a few weeks after the conclusion of the first stage of the Israeli trial they rushed to publish a full-page advertisement in Psychology Today to the effect that it has become possible, "by means of TM technology of the unified field ... to solve the problems of any government, regardless of the magnitude and nature of the problem -- political, economic, social or religious; and irrespective of its system -- capitalism, communism, socialism, democracy, or dictatorship."

4. I too was privileged to see the graphs, tables, and figures which claim to "prove" the wondrous connection between TM and the improvement (on paper, of course) in a number of indicators of "social progress." Unfortunately, I could not ignore the fact that the data upon which these most striking results were based were gathered, examined, and published by a group of researchers who with no exception belong to the homogeneous camp of "true believers" on the subject under study. Very little was done by these people to observe the basic ethical rules of scientific research or to reduce the bias and errors of measurement within the research design. Despite all this, I was still prepared to have the wonderful results with which I was presented examined by some objective observers. In fact after I received the data from Drs. Orme-Johnson and Alexander on the two weeks in August, when the concentration of TM practitioners was greatest, and the two weeks in September, when the number of TM volunteers was at its lowest, I went to the trouble of getting comparative data for the two periods from objective sources as to the changes in the indicators of social betterment used by your researchers. I obtained the data mainly from the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics, from the computer in the main headquarters of the Israel police and from the Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange. In addition, independent staff member examined the major news items that appeared in the two most widely read Israeli newspapers and classified these according to the research indicators, listing separately "positive," "negative," and "neutral" content.

This is not the place to go into a detailed analysis. Suffice it to say that our clearcut conclusion is that no proof whatever was found for the contention that during the period of intensified TM practice at Sidhi level there were more "positive” data than during the period of low TM activity with regard to road accidents, frequency or severity of crime, or the situation of the stock market, nor were there larger numbers of "positive" events reported in the Israeli press during the relevant time.

5. Of course, the contrast between the successful results, which Dr. Orme-Johnson and his associates at Maharishi International University have already managed to announce publicly, and our negative findings is most striking. The contradictory evidence that has come up brings to mind many similar cases in the scientific world, such as, for example, the discovery of Prof. Blondot, head of the Physics Department of the University of Nancy (France), who in 1913 "discovered" a new kind of light activity emitted by metals, which he called N-rays. Within a year more than 100 scientific papers were published by Blondot's collaborators, confirming the existence of N-rays emitted by all sorts of materials. It took a few years for studies by independent researchers to appear, and these reported that they failed to replicate the N-ray findings of Blondot's laboratories. One hardly needs to add that the N-rays have disappeared from the world of physics without a trace and have long since been forgotten. This is but one example out of hundreds that I could mention. They serve to remind us that we must be extremely cautious about the interpretation of "evidence," such as is presented by the MIU researchers, to prove the connection between TM and social betterment. The suspicion as to the trustworthiness of these findings gets to be stronger as one notices that the promises that were made in writing in your research proposal to insure the objectivity of the study failed to meet the test of realization. In your letter dated November 24, 1983 you state plainly: "With reference to your recognition of the need for research of this nature to be independently monitored, we completely agree. Thus, please note our decision to establish both within Israel and North America two Review Boards for just this purpose. As you may be aware, it is highly unusual for social scientists to expose their pre-publication and lodge their specific predictions in advance with such a Review Board. Nevertheless, we are doing so …” But the facts presented in this letter show clearly that this solemnly made promise is best described as merely "words, words, words."

6. The promotional material published by the International Transcendental Meditation Society states that the Jerusalem experiment which "has brought about a solution to conflicts in the region that were impossible of solution until now" (!?), was carried out jointly by the Maharishi International University and Harvard University. I know with absolute certainty that Harvard University was not a partner to this project in any form whatever, nor did it ever sponsor any project of this sort. The investigation was planned and executed solely by the MIU team. It seems to me that the unwarranted attempt to implicate the name of a prestigious university like Harvard in this project does not add to the scientific reliability of this experiment.

7. It is clear from all that I have said that I find it impossible to relate seriously to this study, as it lacks any of the basic requirements that are essential for assuring the validity and reliability of any research.

Mordecai Kaffman, M.D., is Medical Director of the Kibbutz Child and Family Clinic, Tel-Aviv, Israel.

Editor's Note: A reply to Dr. Kaffman's critique is contained in the following comment. Subsequent issues of the CSJ will carry the discussion forward.

Comment

Reducing Conflict and Enhancing Quality of Life in Israel Using the Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi Program: Explanation of a Social Research Project

Charles N. Alexander

David W. Orme-Johnson

The following letter provides a point by point response to "The Use of Transcendental Meditation to Promote Social Progress in Israel," by Dr. Mordecai Kaffman, which begins on page 135 of this issue of the Cultic Studies Journal.

Thank you for this opportunity to reply to Dr. Kaffman. We never received the letter to which he refers. We do know, however, that he sent a similar critical letter to certain members of our review boards. We address Dr. Kaffman's points in order.

1. Dr. Kaffman implies that unbeknownst to others, we began the project in early Augus4 1983. An initial general proposal was sent to Dr. Kaffman in March, 1983. In April and early May, we sent a further proposal to over thirty Israeli scientists for their review. On the basis of feedback from the U.S. and Israel, we then removed approximately one-third of the potential measures for the revised July proposal. We did not begin the project without others being informed. In fac4 the final July proposal explicitly states (page 10), "The initial phase of the intervention is planned to begin on August 1, 1983." During the first weeks of our stay in Israel, we did meet with as many of these scientists as possible to further discuss the project and finalize selection of a smaller subset of measures. As we anticipated, this selection process was constrained by the lack of readily "available" daily time series. We used all non-redundant daily time series available to us prior to departure. The seven final indicators represented all three major categories -- peace and national security, quality of life, and the economy -- and included the measures most frequently used in past research. Measures were finalized in advance of any data analyses.

2. The square root of 1% effect is said to be produced through "group dynamics of consciousness." It is proposed that a minimum “critical mass" of coherently interacting people is required before this amplification effect can be reliably observed. In a community of 100, both 1% and the square root of 1% would equal one person. Clearly, this would not even constitute a group! None of the over twenty square root of 1% studies accepted for publication in Scientific Research on the Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi Program, vol. 4, was on a population smaller than a million because it was decided that small groups of less than approximately 100 may not reliably produce such amplification effects.

3. We do not doubt the sincerity of Dr. Kaffman's motivation, yet he implies that we intentionally misled or manipulated those with whom we interacted on this project. The July proposal (p. 10) states, "While the experimenters cannot fully randomize the dates of the initial intervention and subsequent increases, they are viewed as being essentially arbitrarily assigned ..." Due to pragmatic constraints in implementing this naturalistic study, it simply did not prove possible to specify precisely in advance the daily number of participants or to systematically step up participation level according to a predefined schedule. The numbers of participants for each session were recorded on a daily basis, and it was found that the distribution of the fifteen largest group size days of the 61 series essentially followed a random pattern. The starting date of the research and its location was specified in advance in the July proposal. As stated above, we employed the daily time series variables listed in our proposal, or as close as possible depending on availability during our stay. The following general predictions in the proposal were in fact tested: large scale effects when the group size approached 200; holistic change on broad composite indices; and city, national, and then larger regional effects based on corresponding increases in group size. The daily number of participants in the program was sent to the two review boards after the end of August, after the end of September, and at the close of the study, specifying the last date in Jerusalem. A written progress report midway through the study was sent to the U.S. review board. We met personally with each member of the Israeli review board at least twice during our stay (with the exception of one researcher who, due to a family emergency, could not meet with us prior to our departure). After returning to the U.S., we sent both review boards a 12 page summary of results and 36 pages of figures displaying findings via different methods of analysis.

We were the ones to make a proposal to Dr. Guttman's institute. The institute decided on administrative grounds (which were certainly understandable) not to collaborate on the project. Dr. Guttman was still willing to consult but we could not afford the fee which he felt was minimally necessary. We invited Dr. Guttman to be on our review board, but his time did not permit. Several potential collaborators responded favorably to our project but were not quite ready to participate. In retrospect this is not surprising. Our hypotheses were highly novel and in most cases new to these established "independent" researchers. In other words, we did actively seek outside collaboration, but it was difficult to procure. Dr. Neumann did generously agree to collaborate, but found he did not have the time, etc., to fill that role. Therefore, we agreed that he should instead serve as head of the Israeli review board, and he was listed as such after that point. Dr. Neumann did suggest that we send data to outside statisticians. Dr. Larimore, Senior Research Engineer, Scientific Systems, Inc., Cambridge, MA, a leading mathematical statistician in time series analysis, agreed to shift from a research advisor to a collaborator on the project and is a co-author of the final study.

The decision to explain our results to the media was a difficult one. An initial phase of the study had been completed and funding was exhausted before we could undertake a critical second phase. Our study showed a strong statistical association between daily variation in group size and degree of fighting in Lebanon. Dr. Orme-Johnson had to return at short notice to the U.S. We felt a moral obligation to at least make these initial results known before our departure. We also felt obligated however, to discuss our reasoning with review board members and to receive their feedback before the meeting. At great expense and effort we held a conference call with all members of the U.S. review board (and one Israeli review board member in the U.S.) and explained why we wanted to discuss the results publicly. We then held a luncheon meeting with the Israeli review board; though two of the three members thought they could come, only Dr. Neumann was able to attend. We went over in detail with Dr. Neumann what we intended to say. In fact, Dr. Neumann attended the media conference and provided his own constructive input. After the meeting, we encouraged Dr. Neumann to contact members of the review boards to share his reactions. Finally, we had no prior knowledge of the ad placed in Psychology Today by the Transcendental Meditation organization which, in any event, did not mention the Israel study.

4. On the basis of his own analysis of the data, Dr. Kaffman reaches the "clear cut conclusion" of no evidence "whatever” of positive change, and attributes our contradictory results solely to subjective bias. Though we do not doubt that Dr. Kaffman did such research, we have not been provided with data, analytic procedures, specific results, etc. by which to evaluate his findings. We have sent to the Editor [of the CSJ] our own paper documenting our final results based on publicly available data sources such as the Israel Police Department. Apparently, Dr. Kaffman's analyses were based on aggregated data comparing two 2-week periods. In his earlier letter to the review board, he says that the latter period was two weeks in September-October. In the letter submitted to this journal [to the CSJ] he says that this latter period was the last two weeks in September. The first week in October was not even included in our analysis because it was after the group left Jerusalem. Our analyses were based on individual daily data points (with the series autocorrelation structure removed) over a 61-day period. Hence, our series was over twice as long and overlapped with his by only one-third, if his last week was in October. Therefore, he lacked over half the information and, as well, the statistical power to detect effects. Further, while participation consistently high from August 15-27, the actual peak numbers occurred in early September, with another high peak in later September (which would have been in his control period). His series were too short for application of time-series analytic procedures. The aggregation procedures which these techniques involve are inappropriate to time-series data because they assume that daily data points are independent (uncorrelated). The violation of this statistical assumption can lead to gross distortion in the estimation process. All of our final results are based on the far more appropriate method of Box-Jenkins impact assessment time series analysis (ARIMA). In comparing two summer weeks relatively near the beginning of the series to the last two weeks, his analyses could not help but be confounded by change in seasonal or weekly trends. Whereas our continuous series and application of ARIMA methods mitigate against the influence of linear and cyclic trends within the data. Further, we statistically controlled for the potential influence of holidays and daily maximum temperature in Jerusalem through ARIMA transfer function methodology.

While Dr. Kaffman says that there were no positive changes, apparently he did not even assess the two conflict variables (war deaths and the intensity of fighting in Lebanon) which were the most important measures in our peace study, nor number of fares (as another indicator of accidents). In all likelihood, the four remaining variables which he used were operationalized differently. Finally, and most importantly, he did not create any holistic indices of change, which we predicted in the proposal (p. 6) would provide the most powerful and revealing indication of societal change, nor did he assess the general prediction of spread of effect as the group increased in size. In fact, we found that the effect size associated with the overall composite index was twice that associated with the raw variables taken separately, and that three stochastically independent indices for quality of life in Jerusalem, Israel, and the war in Lebanon tended to be sequentially influenced as the size of the group grew, with the Lebanon war only appearing to be affected when the group was largest.

5. The reverse of the problem to which Dr. Kaffman alludes is that when a respected scientist summarily dismisses a highly novel research program and implicitly labels it as cult activity (by sending his letter to a scholarly journal devoted to that subject), it will create doubt or fear in others so that they will not evaluate the research with an open mind. This would be especially unfortunate when that research is directed toward assessing a new and potentially viable approach to the apparently unresolvable problems of conflict and war. Whereas Dr. Kaffman invokes the negative example of N-rays, one could also cite instances where the resistance of the scientific community to novel hypotheses actually obstructed the advancement of science and its positive application to human life. For example, the resistance of the medical community to the germ theory of disease and antisepsis prevented the saving of countless lives in the nineteenth century. Regarding Dr. Kaffman's earlier remarks on Mesmer, whereas Mesmer's "cosmic fluid" lacked foundation in the laws of physics, the positing of a unified quantum field at the foundation of all animate and inanimate objects (all force and matter fields) represents the dominant viewpoint in current theoretical physics and has become its primary focus of research. Indeed, the recent demonstration of inherently non-local effects associated with such a field by S. Hawking of Cambridge University makes the unified field a plausible physical candidate for mediating extended field effects of consciousness.

6. This project was planned and executed while Dr. Alexander held an appointment as a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University during 1982-83 and 1983-84 under a tenured professor. Dr. Alexander also received his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from Harvard. Of course, Harvard as an entity did not "Officially endorse" this project -- what would that even mean? As a precaution, however, we added a note (proposal, p. 15) explicitly stating that neither the department with which Dr. Alexander was affiliated nor the university as such "officially endorses any particular programs under investigation by their researchers." Results of another study on the positive effects of TM conducted by Dr. Alexander and colleagues at Harvard during this time are described in the October, 1986 issue of the American Psychological Association Monitor. Dr. Alexander was also awarded a visiting faculty position at Maharishi International University (MIU) later during this period. He subsequently became a full-time faculty member at MIU during 1984-85.

7. We deeply appreciate this opportunity to address these issues in detail.

Charles N. Alexander, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of Psychology at Maharishi International University, Fairfield, IA. David W. Orme-Johnson, Ph.D., is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Psychology, and Director of the Doctoral Program in Psychology at Maharishi International University.