Life is Change and Change is Easy


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Change is easy

“The Only Constant in Life Is Change.”


I agree with the quote above, but something that Heraclitus did not address in the quote is that change is easy.

Okay, I know that is not the experience of most of us most of the time. So I will qualify the statement and say that change can be easy. I also need to clarify that this post is talking about change at a societal and/or global level, not personal change.

One tenth of one percent is all it takes

I have discussed elsewhere that perhaps seeing the changes we’d like to see in the world may not be as hard as we thought. The notion is not a new one.

..for centuries, prophets and sages have suggested that one tenth of one percent of humanity, working together in a unified effort, may shift the consciousness of the entire world

Gregg Braden, Isaiah Effect, p.237

So when I see news of the bad things people seem to be up to out in the world, this idea inspires me! In today’s world of approximately 7 billion people, one-tenth of one percent is about 7 million people—about ¾ of the population of Los Angeles.

Maharashi Effect

Even more exciting, according to some studies in large population centers, the number needed to bring about change “out there” may be much smaller! According to these studies of mass meditation/prayer, effects became noticeable when the number of people involved was just over the square root of one percent of the population (Braden, p. 237)!

What effects are we talking about? A statistically measurable reduction in crime. To apply this globally, it would mean only 8,367 people are needed to be in prayer or meditation for there to be a noticeable reduction in bad/criminal behavior. Or, as I prefer to see it, more widespread peace!

With global communication such as it is with the internet etc…achieving this number is certainly feasible, imo, but maybe a bit difficult to organize.

Still, this effect, which became known as the “Maharashi Effect” (Braden, p. 236) is really interesting and worthy of note. It reminds me of Gandhi’s words to “be the change we want to see in the world,” and those words take on new meaning as we see that peaceful minds in prayer and meditation actually result in more peace “out there.”

Hundredth monkey phenomenon

There is another weird thing, that, if true, is also encouraging as far as it being possible to see big changes in the world because of a relatively small number of people. It is described on this blog I found online. Here’s an excerpt:

“There is a phenomenon that scientists observed in the 1950s, called the ”Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon.” Scientists observed that a certain Japanese monkey, named Imo, began to wash her sweet potatoes to remove sand. She taught this trick to her mother and her playmates on Koshima Island. Her playmates taught it to their mothers.

When about 100 monkeys on the island began to do this, there was a shift: all of the monkeys began washing their sweet potatoes. Then, the practice jumped over the sea, and monkeys everywhere were washing their sweet potatoes!”

Oddly enough, the blog that I linked to above sees the phenomenon as a negative thing. Like being swept along unconsciously with the masses. Imo, it’s more of an example of something positive–that a beneficial idea can be shared or transmitted to others without direct contact.

It kind of reminded me of things I have read about trees and plant communication. And it’s a reminder of how we’re all connected. I guess it all depends on how you look at it!

This video takes the positive viewpoint of it as I do:

However, in trying to determine if the 100th monkey phenomenon was an actual thing that scientists observed, I was unable to corroborate the study. An article on Wikipedia says it’s a myth. However, I could swear I saw a documentary about this once upon a time when my son was young and we watched loads of nature shows?!

While it would be more convincing if I was able to document its veracity, I think the premise is easily supported–at least in part– by common sense. We’ve all likely been around someone who has either brightened or darkened a room with their mood…we might even know someone who has lifted or weighed down a whole family or other group…and maybe for an extended time.

So, it’s apparent that our moods and ways of being impact those in our surroundings. Given all the new physics discussed  in another post  on this web-site, it’s not that big a stretch in my mind that such an effect could reach beyond our immediate contacts.

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In conclusion

Whether or not the 100th monkey phenomenon is something that’s been documented, we can still subscribe to the idea that societal and/or global change can be easy. At least easier than how we generally expect it to be.

We have documented studies (the “Maharashi Effect”) that show us that there is positive power in “group think.” We know and are learning more each day about the interconnectedness of people and the planet.

And we have our common experience of the effect a single person can have on a room of people to remind us to see, as it says in the lost Gospel Q, that the harvest [can be] abundant, though the laborers are few (Braden, p.238).

As more and more of us become “laborers” for peace and love and well-being, the more abundant these ideals will become in our world! One easy way to do so is to join the daily prayer/meditation group as discussed in the People Power post. “See” you there?!

About Cate

I am a retired RN–I enjoy blogging, designing mugs and more, and spreading a bit of positivity in the world.

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