Monday, April 03, 2006

Plants & Prayer

If you're having trouble with your garden this year, you'd better read this. :)

Research on the Power of Prayer
Larry Johnson

The power and impact of prayer is another area that has recently received some enlightening research. The Spindrift Foundation (Salem OR) was interested in two simple questions; does prayer really work, and if so, how? The foundation knew that good tight experimental control was an absolute necessity if any of the findings were to have any validity in the scientific community. To completely eliminate human bias, they used the germination rates of grass seeds as the target of the prayers. Because they could have seed trays side by side with the exact same physical conditions, they were able to introduce very stringent statistical controls. The people asked to pray for the seeds had absolutely no physical contract with them. The Spindrift Foundation found that prayer did indeed work, and there was a statistically significantly higher rate of germination for the seeds that had been prayed for.

The foundation also found that prayer was much more effective on seeds that had been stressed with salt water, than on seeds that had only clear water.

While geographic distance did not have any statistical impact as a variable, more interestingly, the type of prayer offered did. It was found that the more general the prayer, the more impact it has on the seeds. In other words, a prayer such as "thy will be done" had more impact than one that pleaded that the seed be germinated. This is fascinating research. It is very comforting to know that not only are scientists proving that there really is power in prayer, but they are also proving that it works best when you need it most.

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