Wishing for Good Weather: A Natural Experiment in Group Consciousness

Roger. D. Nelson

Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research, School of Engineering/Applied Science, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544

Journal of Scientific Exploration, Vol. 11, No. 1, pp. 47-58


Many human activities are affected by the weather, and there is a long history of rituals and ceremonial efforts aimed at controlling it. In modern societies, such efforts are largely vestigial and amount to informal hoping or wishing for good weather for special occasions. Reunion and commencement activities at Princeton University, involving thousands of alumni, graduates, family and others, are held outdoors, and it is often remarked that they are almost always blessed with good weather. A comparison of the recorded rainfall in Princeton vs. nearby communities shows that there is significantly less rain, less often, in Princeton on those days with major outdoor activities.

Full paper is at Wishing for Good Weather.