Health notes

The power of good intentions

Most of us feel powerless when we see violence and tragedy on the news. It may
be possible to help, however – and it takes just ten minutes of our time and our positive thoughts.

Over the past nine years Lynne McTaggart, best-selling author and founder of medical newsletter What Doctors Don’t Tell You, has investigated the increasing evidence of the power of ‘intention’, as it’s known. Now she and leading scientists and thinkers worldwide propose that a critical mass of people sending loving thoughts to a war-torn area might lower the level of violence.

Next Sunday, 14 September, Lynne is asking people to join in the first pilot ‘peace intention experiment’ via the web. Readers who have experienced the influence of absent or distant healing, which has been validated by scientific research, will find little difficulty in believing the concept.

For the past 18 months, Lynne has been running workshops and a programme through her website ( with groups of volunteers
in 80 countries worldwide sending healing thoughts to someone with a health problem.

‘In my book The Intention Experiment I distilled the common practices of experienced healers into a simple programme that everyone can take part in. We‘ve had hundreds of anecdotal reports testifying to the benefits. One that stays with me is Daniel from Texas, whose hands were terribly burnt in a gas explosion. Last winter, a group on the website sent him positive intentions and his hospital stay was cut from the expected several months to six days.’

To test whether disparate groups of people around the world could send an intention that would affect other living organisms – in this case, seeds – Lynne joined forces with psychologist Dr Gary Schwartz, director of the Laboratory for Advances in Consciousness and Health at the University of Arizona, to run six Germination Intention Experiments.

In each experiment, participants were shown four sets of 30 seeds on the website and asked to send an intention to just one set to grow. Researcher Mark Boccuzzi, who didn’t know which set had been selected, planted each batch of 120 seeds under standardised conditions. He also planted the same number, the Intention Control set, for which no intention was sent.

Both sets were harvested and measured after five days and Dr Schwartz found, on average, that seeds sent an intention to grow were eight millimetres higher than the controls. ‘Distance from which intention is sent seems to have no bearing on results,’ says Lynne. ‘A group of 100 in upstate New York was able to profoundly affect a batch of seeds more than a thousand miles away in Tucson, Arizona.’

In 1989, I interviewed an eminent quantum physicist, the late Professor David Bohm, about similar experiments with seeds. He said quantum physics had a possible explanation, called ‘non-local interaction’ where events happening at one location in space could influence events in another location. ‘It suggests further connections, some new sort of energy… beyond what present-day science knows,’ he said.

No one knows whether the peace intention experiment will work but, as Lynne McTaggart says, ‘We will never know if we don’t ask the question. There is so much violence in the world. If good thoughts can lower that even a little, it will empower individuals hugely.’ One thing’s certain, it can’t hurt.

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  health notes

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health notes
Book of the week
Delicious & Nutritious by
Terry Tucker (Simon & Schuster).

Subtitled ‘Healthy Home Cooking
for Older People’, this is a collection
of easy- to-follow, traditional recipes with a modern twist. Tucker, who is Director of Learning, Development
and Hospitality for Barchester
Care Homes, is passionate
about good cooking.

To order a copy for £10.99, post-free, contact the YOU bookshop, tel:
0845 155 0711,

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