the Economy through the Maharishi Effect
Enlivening national creativity and productivity. Increased national prosperity and more positive economic trends are among the predicted results of enlivening the unified field of natural law in national consciousness through the group practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 1977, p. 8; 1986, p. 142; 1982, p. 4). Maharishi explains that enhanced prosperity will result from increased ability to make use of the infinite creative potential of natural law inherent in the unified field of pure consciousness. Scientific research has shown that the practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program increases the creativity and productivity of the individual (Travis, 1979; Orme-Johnson & Haynes, 1981; Frew, 1974). Because infinite creativity is a property of the unified field of natural law, pure consciousness, enlivening the unified field in national consciousness through the group practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program enlivens greater creativity throughout society. Maharishi explains that "creativity . . . is fully lively in the unified field" and thus "when the unified field is enlivened in national consciousness, infinite creativity is lively in the national economy" (1983, p. 4). As a result, "economic wealth also increases because more creative people make wiser business decisions" (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 1982, p. 4).
Enlivening creativity in national consciousness through the Maharishi Effect, therefore, enlivens the basis of all prosperity and progress in national life: the creativity of its people. Maharishi (1982) explains that the infinite creative potential of its people is the most valuable asset of every nation:
Creative people are the true wealth of any nation. . . . The real basis of a nation's economic prosperity is the creativity of the people rather than the system of distribution or bringing wealth from outside. . . . The real assets of the nation are its people, every one of whom has infinite creativity inherent in him. (p. 1)
Maharishi (1986) adds that whatever the economic system of the country--communist, capitalist, etc.--productivity and efficiency will increase through the enlivenment in human awareness of the creative potential of natural law, though which, with supreme economy, the unified field creates and governs the entire universe:
Basing the economy of the nation on the level of currency regulation or distribution of wealth, hanging on to either communist or capitalist ideals of economy or to any other system of economy--all these are too superficial to achieve fulfilling economy. With the unified field based system of economic excellence, people will work less and accomplish more. There will be greater efficiency, more production, and more national productivity through increased creativity and proficiency in that style of functioning which is the functioning of nature. (p. 126)
One important aspect of the predicted improvement in the national economy through the Maharishi Effect is the reduction of unemployment. Maharishi explains that although economic conditions certainly contribute to unemployment, a more important factor is lack of creativity in the national consciousness (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi 1985, pp. 171-172). Maharishi (1985, p. 172) adds that this lethargic influence in collective consciousness can be eliminated through the collective practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program.
Other positive effects on the economy. In addition to the increase in national creativity and productivity through the Maharishi Effect, other related effects of the group practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program will also contribute to enhanced prosperity and economic progress. Among these predicted effects, as noted above, are increased agricultural abundance through greater balance in nature; this will strengthen the vital agricultural sector of the economy and increase national self-sufficiency in essential food production. Additionally, since the maintenance of peace and internal order are essential for maximum economic progress, the group practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program will greatly enhance national prosperity through reducing and preventing social unrest, turbulence, and terrorism, as well as domestic and international conflict. The prevention of natural disasters and other collective calamities such as drought, famine, and the political or economic collapse of the nation will also obviously contribute to economic growth and stability.
With improvement in the economy through the enlivenment of greater creativity and support of nature in national consciousness, the national government will spontaneously find greater success in its efforts to promote economic progress. Also the increased efficiency and effectiveness of government through the Maharishi Effect, resulting from increased coherence in collective consciousness, will contribute to greater success for all policies and programs of government, including economic policies (see "Maharishi's Absolute Theory of Government" above). In particular, improved national economic performance through the Maharishi Effect will bring increased government revenues and reduced budget deficits; fewer government resources will be required to deal with problems, allowing more to be used for the promotion of progress (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 1985, pp. 179-180; "Maharishi's Supreme Offer to the World," 1978, p. 3). Maharishi explains, therefore, that government programs to implement this approach to creating a problem-free society are very cost-effective:
Compared to the spending of a government on defence, health, or unemployment benefits, the cost of bringing enlightenment to every individual and invincibility to the nation is almost nothing, so the government's treasuries will not feel any pinch. Yet the government's income will become much greater because the people will become healthier and more orderly, creative, and productive. The government will gain more revenues because of the higher productivity, and will have almost no spending on health, police, and defence. ("Maharishi's Supreme Offer to the World," 1978, p. 3)
By using the skilled hand of nature to administer the economic and other affairs of society, the administration of every aspect of society will become simple, effortless, orderly, and spontaneously evolutionary (Maharishi University of Natural Law, 1982, p. 7).
Vedic Science and the Economics of Human Resources
Creativity and human resources in economics. Maharishi's description of human creativity as the fundamental economic resource of any nation and his explanation that creativity has its source in a universal field of consciousness at the basis of the physical universe are ideas which have been echoed in the works of economic writer George Gilder. For example, Gilder (1981) remarks: "Our greatest and only resource is the miracle of human creativity in a relation of openness to the divine" (p. 268). Gilder (1989) adds that "wealth comes . . . to the liberators of human creativity, not to the conquerors of land, but to the emancipators of mind" (p. 116). Like Gilder, the eminent economist Joseph Schumpeter (1950) emphasized the central role of creative innovators in promoting economic growth and development, as did economist Frederick Harbison (1965). Harbison (1973) concluded that "human resources--not capital, nor income, nor material resources--constitute the ultimate basis for the wealth of nations" (p. 3). Likewise, economist Israel Kirzner (1985) emphasizes that economic activity in the private sector may be seen as an ongoing process of creative discovery in which the "alertness" and creativity of entrepreneurs are the key factors contributing to economic progress.
The central importance of human resources in promoting economic growth and prosperity has also been emphasized by leading exponents of "human capital theory" in economics, such as Theodore W. Schultz (1981), Gary Becker (1975), and Jacob Mincer (1984). Human capital theorists stress that the knowledge, skills, abilities, and health of the population constitute valuable economic resources which contribute to human productivity and economic growth, and may be augmented through investments in such activities as education, training, and health promotion which improve the quality of human resources. -1- Likewise, through such activities as research and development, human creativity generates advances in knowledge which increase the stock of useful knowledge, or "knowledge capital" (Schultz, 1987).
Such expansion of knowledge over the past 200 years has been a driving force of economic growth, especially in the industrialized nations, and has led to increased productivity and affluence through, for example, technological advances embodied in new "physical capital" such as computers, automated production plants, and other forms of productive plant and equipment (Kuznets, 1966; Maddison, 1982). Nobel laureate economist T.W. Schultz (1987), emphasizes the central importance of human capital and knowledge capital in economic progress:
The common view of capital is confined to material things. Physical capital, however, accounts for a small part of the total stock of capital in countries that have achieved a high level of per capita income. Moreover, physical capital consists in large part of knowledge: for example, advances in knowledge made the computer, modern communications facilities, and the high-yielding crop varieties possible. The vast improvements in the quality of most physical capital over time could not have been made were it not for advances in knowledge. (p. 11)
Physical capital is simply an expressed form, or embodiment, of human knowledge and creativity. Moreover, since all knowledge and human resources have their basis in consciousness or intelligence, it follows that the most basic level of consciousness, pure consciousness, the infinite source of all creativity in man and in nature, is the ultimate economic resource. -2- Thus the unfoldment of the full creative potential of human consciousness through Maharishi's Vedic Science and Technology offers mankind an unprecedented opportunity to accelerate economic progress throughout the world by making use of our most abundant natural resource, the unlimited creativity of the unified field.
Bringing fulfillment to economics. Maharishi's Vedic Science and Technology brings fulfillment to human-resource economics by providing a complete and precise description of consciousness and its relation to human creativity, as well as a proven technology for developing the full potential of human resources for the individual and society. From the point of view of human-resource economics, Maharishi's TM and TM-Sidhi program may be seen as a uniquely effective investment in human capital development, which, according to Maharishi, holds the key to the unfoldment of unlimited human productivity and fulfilling prosperity. In particular, the group practice of Maharishi's TM and TM-Sidhi program offers a powerful new tool of government policy for improving the economy and promoting the total advancement of the nation by unlocking the full potential of human creativity. Maharishi (1986) explains that total development of the nation involves more than mere economic development, and that the key to promoting this holistic development of the nation lies in maximizing national creativity:
Improving the economy should mean total development of the nation, not just a few dollars and cents more or less in the country, but total advancement of the nation.
Total advancement of the nation means everything in the fulfilling direction, everything aimed at raising self-sufficiency and self-reliance in the nation. This will come through alliance with natural law, which will come through the Technology of the Unified Field [the TM and TM-Sidhi program]. Here is a chance for every nation to foster total development, including economic development, simply by making use of the available natural resources. The most precious resource of any nation is the human brain physiology. Train that cosmic computer to function cosmically and inherit the cosmic functioning of the unified field in order that every human brain is as creative as it can be. The whole nation will rise in productivity, creativity, and self-sufficiency. (pp. 127-128)
Maharishi (1986, p. 155) emphasizes that total development includes not only material progress, but also inner growth, the unfoldment of the full potential of human consciousness:
So much emphasis today is being put on economic development. This is not wrong, but there is something more valuable than mere economics. Economics may be helpful for existence, but if life is spent in existing only, the infinite possibilities inherent in human awareness have no meaning. (p. 48)
The practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program naturally unfolds the infinite potential of human awareness and cultivates higher states of consciousness, enlightenment. (For a review of Maharishi's description of higher states of consciousness, see Alexander and Boyer,1989). Maharishi (1966) emphasizes that the highest goal of economics is to provide both outer and inner affluence, outer material abundance as well as the inner fulfillment, contentment, and bliss of higher states of consciousness:
If man's contentment is not achieved the very purpose of economics is defeated.
It may be stated emphatically that unless a man achieves permanent happiness he will not be contented and satisfied with life. To bring about this permanent contentment is the final aim of economics. (pp. 214-215)
Maharishi's Vedic Science and Technology fulfills this highest goal of economics by providing a practical and proven means for bringing individual awareness into alliance with natural law, thus naturally developing higher states of consciousness in the individual and simultaneously promoting the growth of affluence and fulfillment in society by bringing national consciousness into alliance with natural law through the Maharishi Effect.
on the TM and TM-Sidhi Program
The prediction that the quality of life in society may be enhanced through the Maharishi Effect has been empirically investigated in more than 35 studies since 1974. These studies are discussed in Dillbeck et al. (1987), Hagelin (1987), Orme-Johnson and Dillbeck (1987), Orme-Johnson et al. (1988), and Dillbeck, Banus, Polanzi, and Landrith (1988), and reprinted in Orme-Johnson and Farrow (1977), Chalmers et al. (in press), and Wallace et al. (in press). In addition to the effect on economic performance, these studies report evidence of significant improvements in such diverse measures of the quality of life as crime and suicide rates, automobile accidents, notifiable diseases, civil disorder, international conflict, terrorism, and composite indices of life quality. One attraction of Maharishi's field-theoretic description of consciousness is that it alone seems capable of offering a unified and parsimonious explanation of these diverse research findings.
In the following section we describe the results of empirical research examining the impact of the Maharishi Effect on the national economies of the U.S. and Canada. This research analyzed the effect of the group practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi program on a commonly used measure of national economic performance, Okun's "misery index" of inflation and unemployment.