The Science of Nonviolence

What science tells us today about human nature is thoroughly compatible with the worldview we have articulated. There is no conflict whatever between the methodology and findings of science and the higher image of the human being in which nonviolence is a defining potential.  Science at its best entails a rigorous approach to observation and the testing of hypotheses. The science of nonviolence is no exception. While science in the West has been practiced as mainly an observation of the outside world, the science of nonviolence must embrace an internal component as well. Gandhi, for whom nonviolence was entirely a science, was thoroughly convinced that there are laws of spiritual behavior just as rigorous, reliable and predictable as the laws that govern the material world. On this page you will find some of the latest findings of many relevant fields of science.

The Science of Love

In the following article from the Aeon Magazine, Barbara Frederickson explores some of evidence maintaining that love benefits us as a species and that we can increase our capacity for love through meditation. Of interest is what she terms ‘calm and connect,’ a response sometimes also heard referred to as ‘tend and befriend’ which is… read more

Could the Sea Be Conscious?

The deeper science peers into the universe, whether it be the remotest reaches of space or the sea’s depths the more we must marvel at the intricate, subtle, and marvelous texture of reality.  This study confirms for us once again that cooperation has been and remains a far more potent factor in life and evolution… read more

The How of Happiness: A “Rap” video…

This interesting video on explores strategies for cultivating lasting happiness. We’d add a few more points: 1. Unplug from the mass media and engage in practices for unlearning oppression 2. Learn everything you can about nonviolence 3. Get personal and “practice personhood” 4. Get involved in the issue you are passionate about. Thanks to Jeff… read more

Swarm Theory and Nonviolence

Recently one of the members of our Metta team, Stephanie, came across a fascinating article by Peter Miller from National Geographic about so-called “swarm theory”. It’s the theory that for some species such as bees, ants, fish, caribou, or birds, group intelligence dominates behavior rather than individual intelligence. This group intelligence has proven to be… read more

Meditation and the New Physics: A talk by Eknath Easwaran

In the following video meditation teacher Eknath Easwaran bridges the findings of the new physics with the experiences of the mystics. The insight he gives sheds light on some of the powerful ways that science and the wisdom tradition overlap, and he certainly inspires this blogroll on our website. For more information about meditation and… read more

Self-Organization in the Cosmos and in Our Lives

by Kari Risher, Metta Research Fellow Our world is increasingly devastated by environmental degradation, hunger crises, and violent battles over ever-diminishing resources. We see the effects of a decaying fabric of life in the global economic recession, erratic climate patterns, and the epidemic of depression among industrialized populations. It seems at times that “the machine”… read more

Cooperation Among Yeast Cells Yields Unexpected Benefits

By Kari Risher Metta Research Fellow Any human among us can intuitively observe that, as we cooperate with others to serve the needs of our communities rather than ourselves as individuals, we reap social benefits that may not always be quantifiable. As we gain a reputation for being helpful, we are naturally liked and supported… read more

The Power of Restorative Justice and Reconciliation to Maintain Peace

Kari Risher, Metta Center Fellow An article was published on September 27, 2012 in Science by anthropologist Polly Wiessner from The University of Utah that examines the effectiveness of the intervention of small-scale tribal village courts in conflict to prevent war among the Enga tribal people of Papua New Guinea. The study’s findings are dramatic.… read more