Julia Theisen

Julia Theisen, owner of Body & Soul Wellness Center and Spa.

There have been numerous articles, studies and books written about the benefits of meditation. The personal benefits are vast and include physical, mental and emotional elements.

There also have been many studies to demonstrate the powerful benefit of group meditation. For instance, back in 1993, a project took place between June 7 and July 30 in Washington, D.C. This experiment studied the effect of a large group of meditators on social trends and specifically violent crime.

Bear in mind that the crime rate in Washington at the time was three times the national average, and prior to the research project, violent crime had been steadily increasing.

The focus of the meditators was on peace and coherent vibrations — ones that are resonant, smooth, organized and even. Based on experience, the researchers predicted that the meditating group would reduce crime by more than 20% in the city during the study period, and this would be achieved without any verbal, social, political or physical interaction between the meditators and the local community.

At the time, the local police authority ridiculed the prediction and the police chief went on record to say that the only event that would reduce crime that much in Washington during the summer months would be 20 inches of snow.

About two weeks into the experiment, and as the number of meditators grew, violent crime began a steep decline. It continued until the end of the two-month experiment resulting in a 23.3% drop in crime during the study period. This, along with many other research articles, can be found at tinyurl.com/zjg8rcp.

When individuals meditate with a specific broader intentions, their individual efforts are amplified by others focusing on the same intention. You don’t have to be in the same place or intending at the same time for the shared intention to become manifest. A group intention is available to anyone, anywhere, at any time. What unites the group is the collective intention.

Friends, we are at a moment in time where our world needs our collective intention for transformation and peace. You have an opportunity to participate in an unprecedented, worldwide, collective effort initiated by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, spiritual head of the Himalayan Institute.

The Year Long Meditation has a goal of 1,000,008 hours of meditation for global transformation through the next year. Already, more than 5,000 people from more than 90 countries are engaged in practicing this intention.

You can join the project at any time. Just commit to an amount of practice that feels sustainable to you, even if it is one minute per week. And, be consistent — do a little every day.

Find out more or sign up at www.yearlongmeditation.org.

As you meditate, you will know that positive change and transformation are happening on both the personal and collective level.

In solidarity with this effort, Body & Soul is offering free group meditation sessions once per month to support people’s meditation practice and their participation in the Year Long Meditation.

The meditations are from 3 to 3:45 p.m. the last Sunday of the month on these dates: Aug. 25, Sept. 29, Oct. 27, Nov. 24, Dec. 29, Jan. 26, Feb. 23, March 29, April 26, May 31 and June 28.

Theisen is the co-owner, with her husband, of Body & Soul Wellness Center, Salon and Spa. She teaches mind-body-spirit concepts to help people transform their lives. Her teachings draw on 18 years experience as a yoga and meditation teacher, as well as many years of self-study in the areas of mind-body-spirit wellness and personal transformation.

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