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   Baltimore Hosts 'Peace Palace for Collective Meditation'


Baltimore Hosts ‘Peace Palace for Collective Meditation’

by Mary Ellen Graybill

Can practicing meditation bring about peace and harmony in city schools and neighborhoods—not to mention world peace?
On July 2 at the Hay-Adams Hotel in Washington, former Natural Law Party presidential candidate John Hagelin, Ph.D. announced the establishment of a "complementary government" that will include 400 physicians, business leaders, and university professors. He said $100 million has been raised so far for what has been named the US Peace Government. These funds are to be used to underwrite peace projects, including building facilities for the practice of collective meditation, with the aim of lowering crime and murder rates and increasing public well-being.

The event was designed to focus national press attention on a "Consciousness-Based Curriculum" in schools as a starting point for changing the stress level of cities.

Eleven speakers spoke in support of the new adjunct government during the 45-minute press conference, including Rashi Glazer, Ph.D. of the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Maryland's John Davies, Ph.D., senior faculty associate, Center for International Development and Conflict Management. Also endorsing the concept were Jim Krag, M.D., president of the Virginia Association of Community Psychiatrists, and Robert Schneider, M.D., Director of the NIH-funded Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention.

School principal George H. Rutherford, Ph.D., a 30-year educator from Baltimore, spoke about his positive experience with his Washington, DC public high school, where most of the students have practiced Transcendental Meditation (TM) since 1993. and how he has seen a dramatic decline in negativity among students at his school, even though it is situated in the midst of a high murder rate district.

Each speaker endorsed the practice of Transcendental Meditation, described at the event as the most studied and widely practiced meditation technique in the world today.

Finding third party activity a "waste of time," many Natural Law Party adherents who worked long hours for ballot access in 1992, 1996 and 2000 in Maryland, have decided to join the "Global Country of World Peace," which will have a new Constitution—a “Constitution of the Universe”—that takes into account the knower of knowledge, and the process of knowing, not just the facts.

The founder of TM, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, emphasized that the new US Peace Government will ultimately end destructive tendencies and bring harmony to the nation. "America will be a beautiful mosaic of differences," he said

How does TM work? Dr. Hagelin, a physicist says: "It stands to reason if we have enough people who are involved in the experience of deep peace that the influence is going to be felt across society. It is also true that there are deep principles of physics involved that explain how people interact at a very subtle and fundamental level, and that is very much like a radio wave where you have a disturbance, an impulse in the field of consciousness, that propagates in all directions like a radio wave does, and that can be picked up by an appropriately tuned receiver.

“Consciousness is also a field, like the electro-magnetic field, and there are influences in the field of consciousness that people are already familiar with. When you walk into a prison it has its own feeling. If you walk around parts of Baltimore, it has its own feeling."

Can the public through meditation and experience of peace, and even more powerfully, through collective meditation, create a more peaceful and harmonious world? The idea is gaining ground among professionals who have shown their ability to manage complex organizations and navigate government bureaucracies, and have earned reputations as executives of good judgment and integrity.

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This story was published on July 14, 2003.
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