A Disturbance in the Force: Exploring Collective Consciousness at Burning Man

Special Report: Collective Consciousness at Burning Man

From 2012 through 2016, scientists from the Institute of Noetic Sciences went to the Burning Man festival to explore the often reported subjective experience of an “energetic shift” during the two main ceremonies – the Man Burn and the Temple Burn. This reported feeling seems to be evoked when tens of thousands of people coherently focus on the same event. We wanted to learn more.

These exploratory experiments were designed to see if there is an impact during these peak moments of collective focus on the outputs of truly random number generators (RNGs). These RNGs were also measuring baseline readings before, during, and after these ceremonies. The combined results of the five experiments indicated that something other than random chance was impacting the RNGs during these two main events. Was it -- as Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars felt -- a disturbance in the force? Enjoy this Special Report on the details of our exploratory experiments.

See also: A Video Overview of this Research