On January 23rd 1997, a large number of people around the world participated in a global meditation organized by The Gaiamind Project. The event was planned for 17:30 to 17:35 Greenwich Mean Time (12:30 to 12:35 Eastern Standard Time) to coincide with an unusual astronomical conjunction, and was promoted as a chance to honor the earth and to share an experience with others on a global scale.
The event provided an opportunity to record data from random event generators (REG) in several laboratories during a time-period where very large numbers of people were engaged in a coordinated, meaningful activity. Different types of random event (or random number) generators were used in various locations. All were well-calibrated sources of "true" random event sequences, typically based on electronic white noise from diodes or resistors, with sophisticated sampling and counting logic to produce a sequence of independent binary events that can be written as data in computer files. The experimental hypothesis to be tested was the prediction that this activity would alter the statistical behavior of the REG devices in a manner similar to findings in previous "FieldREG" experiments (Nelson, et al, 96; Nelson, et al, 97; Radin, et al, 96).
An invitation to participate, including a protocol description and a statement of the formal hypothesis, was sent on January 18, 1997 to internet mailing lists read by professional researchers with suitable equipment and a potential interest in the multiple-site experiment. In addition, the intention to make a scientific assessment in this manner was described in the literature and the website of the Gaiamind organizers. Extracts from the Gaiamind site were included in the invitation message to provide some background information. More information on the planning and publicity prior to the global event is available from the author, at the Gaiamind URL: [http://www.gaiamind.org.], and by clicking here.
The published invitation and instructions indicated the time and duration of the event with reference to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and Eastern Standard Time (EST), and specified the formal prediction and the measure to be used for its evaluation: "[T]he time set for the primary global meditation [is] from 1230 to 1235 EST. The prediction is for a deviation of the distribution mean from random expectation during this time period. I will make a similar prediction for the surrounding 5 minute periods, 1225-30 and 1235-40, but specify the global meditation time for a formal hypothesis test of a proposed anomalous influence ..."