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Achieving Collective Coherence:
Group Effects on Heart Rate Variability Coherence
and Heart Rhythm Synchronization

Steven M. Morris, Ph.D.

Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, A Peer-Reviewed Journal, 2010; 16 (4):62-72.

For a PDF version of the complete paper, click here.

Abstract

Objectives: This study examined whether a group of participants trained in achieving high states of heart rate variability coherence (HRVC) could facilitate higher levels of HRVC in an untrained subject in close proximity.

Design: Fifteen adult volunteers were trained to increase their HRVC. In a series of 148 10-minute trials using six different experimental protocols, three of the trained participants were placed together with one of 25 additional volunteers to test whether the three could collectively facilitate higher levels of HRVC in the fourth.

Results: The HRVC of the untrained subject was found to be higher in approximately half of all matched comparisons and was highest in cases where all four participants focused on achieving increased HRVC. A probit analysis revealed a statistical relationship between participants' comfort with each other and trial success. Greater levels of inter-group comfort were seen to be positively linked to increases in HRVC. Evidence of heart rhythm synchronization between group members was revealed through several methods, including correlation analysis, coherence analysis, wavelet coherence analysis, and Granger causality tests. Higher levels of HRVC were found to be correlated with higher levels of heart rate synchronization between participants.

Conclusions: These results suggest that a coherent energy field can be generated and/or enhanced by the intentions of small groups of participants trained to send coherence-facilitating intentions to a target receiver. This field is made more coherent with greater levels of comfort between group members. The evidence of heart rhythm synchronization across participants supports the possibility of heart-to-heart bio-communications. (Altern Ther Health Med. 2010;16(4):62-72).