Preventing Terrorism and International Conflict:
DAVID W. ORME-JOHNSON
MICHAEL C. DILLBECK
CHARLES N. ALEXANDER
This study tested the hypothesis that group practice of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) and TM-Sidhi programs by approximately the square root of 1% of the world’s population globally reduces terrorism and international conflict. For 3 periods during 1983-1985, ranging from 8 to 11 days, practitioners of these programs assembled in one place to practice in a group. Data on the numbers of casualties and fatalities due to terrorism were obtained from the Rand Corporation and grouped as five-day aggregates, forming a single time series spanning the 3 assemblies. Data on international conflict were generated from date-blind ratings of news events in the New York Times and London Times to give comparable blocks for time series analysis before, during, and after each of the assemblies. Time series intervention analyses used the Akaike information criterion to objectively define optimal noise models. The analyses found a 72% drop in terrorism (p < .025) and an average drop of 32% in international conflict (p values from < .005 to < .025) during the assemblies. These results are consistent with similar effects of smaller such assemblies on local populations and suggest that long-term implementation of groups could have a major impact on terrorism and international conflict worldwide.
KEYWORDS Terrorism, international conflict, Transcendental Meditation, consciousness, crime prevention