If More of Us Meditate on One Subject Together, Does the Power Increase?

One of the organizations I belong to is WorldPrayerMeditation. They periodically send emails asking their members to pray or meditate for a specific region or cause, encouraging us to stop on a specific date and time to do so. In their emails, they say, they want us to invite our friends and family to sign up for the service as well, to “make our prayers and meditations even more powerful.”

I wonder.

Leaving aside for the moment the question of whether “meditation about” a given topic is in fact a useful concept, and whether intercessory prayer is at all effective, the underlying assumption here seems to be that if only one of us prays for this specific outcome, it is less likely to come about than if dozens or hundreds or millions of us do so. Which, in turn, posits a Deity “out there” who is so busy that we must clamber for Its attention. Neither of those ideas has any place on my spiritual path.

But, still I wonder.

If more of us, at any given point in time, are raising our consciousness about a specific topic, does that mean that there is such a thing as an overall global consciousness that can be quantified in such a way that it is measurably increased by the addition of additional individuals to the process? Despite the fact that this bothers me a bit as being illogical — inasmuch as it is inconsistent with what I believe at my core — it is clearly a bit of an enigma, at least for me. I believe, with Jung, in a “collective consciousness.” In my teaching, I often suggest that there are humanity-wide conditions that would cease to be part of our reality if none or fewer of us professed belief in them. (Among those things, for example, are chronic and epidemic illnesses.)

Based on my fundamental belief in the Oneness of All That Is, I’m inclined to think that my first instinct here was right. Getting more people to focus on a specific subject at the same time, whether with prayer, meditation or just thought, doesn’t seem likely to increase the potential for its resolution. At least, that’s true if we assume that the underlying concern on which we are focusing requires some sort of “Divine intervention”. On the other hand, it does seem somewhat clearer that the more people who focus on a problem, the more likely a solution is to emerge from that collective thinking, based purely on numbers. Certainly, the more awareness we as humanity have of a given problem, the more likely it is that such awareness will reach the consciousness of one who already knows how to solve it, or who has the skills and knowledge with which to develop that solution.

So at the end of the day, I conclude that collective meditation and prayer certainly can’t hurt, regardless of whether we believe that increasing numbers also increases intensity. But that doesn’t discount the possibility that one lone individual, by the mere act of prayer or meditation, could affect the outcome.

As I am so fond of saying, “There’s only one of us here.”

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