Thursday, 7 November 2013

John Hagelin

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John Hagelin
John S. Hagelin.jpg
BornJohn Samuel Hagelin
(1954-06-09) June 9, 1954 (age 59)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
ResidenceFairfield, Iowa
EducationPh.D. Harvard University, 1981
Alma materDartmouth College, Harvard University
EmployerMaharishi University of Management, US Peace Government
Known forThree-time candidate for U.S. President, physicist, and administrator
TitleRaja of Invincible America, President of the US Peace Government, and others
Political partyNatural Law Party
Spouse(s)Margaret Cowhig (1985–1993) divorced
Kara Anastasio (2010)[1]
AwardsKilby, Ig Nobel
John Samuel Hagelin (born June 9, 1954) is an American particle physicist, three-time candidate of the Natural Law Party for President of the United States (1992, 1996 and 2000), and director of the Transcendental Meditation movement for the United States.[2]
A former researcher at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) (1981–1982) and the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) (1982–1983), Hagelin is now Professor of Physics and Director of the Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy at Maharishi University of Management (MUM). He has conducted research into unified field theory and the Maharishi Effect. His position on consciousness and its relationship to the unified field is not accepted by other physicists.
Non-academic positions Hagelin holds include an appointment by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi as Raja of Invincible America, president of the David Lynch Foundation and Honorary Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Maharishi University of Management.[3][4]

Personal life[edit]

Hagelin was born June 9, 1954, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.[5] He won a scholarship to Taft School for boys, and while he was a student there he was involved in a motorcycle crash that led to hospitalization and a full body cast. During this time he was introduced to quantum mechanics and the Transcendental Meditation technique (TM), both of which had a major impact on his life.[6][7]
Hagelin attended Dartmouth College; after his freshman year, a continued interest in Transcendental Meditation led him to Vittel, France, where he become a qualified teacher of the TM technique.[6][8]
Hagelin was married to Margaret Cowhig from 1985 to 1993.[9][10][11] In 2010, he married Kara Anastasio, the former vice-chair of the Natural Law Party of Ohio. The couple lives in Fairfield, Iowa.[12][13]


Hagelin completed an undergraduate degree in physics with highest honors (summa cum laude) from Dartmouth. He studied physics at Harvard under Howard Georgi, earning a Master's degree in 1976 and a PhD in 1981.[6][8] By the time Hagelin had received his Ph.D. from Harvard, he had published "several serious papers" on particle theory.[14] In 1981, Hagelin became a postdoctoral researcher at the European Center for Particle Physics (CERN) in Switzerland, and in 1982 he moved to the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC).[6]
In 1983 he suddenly left the SLAC reportedly due to personal problems.[15][16] A year later in 1984 he joined the Maharishi International University (MIU) as chairman of the physics department where he continued research in physics.[15][16] Hagelin collaborators Dmitri Nanopolous and John Ellis were uncomfortable with Hagelin's move from Stanford to MIU but continued to work with him.[17] While at MIU, he received funding from the National Science Foundation.[6]
Hagelin is a professor of physics at Maharishi University of Management (formerly MIU).[18] He was also to be the President of Maharishi Central University, which was under construction in Smith Center, Kansas until early 2008, when, according to Hagelin, the project was put on hold while the TM organization dealt with the death of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.[19]

Theoretical physics research[edit]

During his time at CERN, SLAC and Maharishi University of Management (MUM), Hagelin worked on supersymmetric extensions of the standard model and grand unification theories.[14] In the years 1979–96, Hagelin published more than 70 papers about particle physics, electroweak unification, grand unification, supersymmetry and cosmology, most of them in academic scientific journals.[14] His work on the "flipped SU(5), heterotic superstring theory," is considered one of the more successful unified field theories or "theories of everything"[20] and was once highlighted in a cover story in Discover magazine.[21]
Hagelin co-authored a 1983 paper entitled "Weak symmetry breaking by radiative corrections in broken supergravity,"[22] which is included in a list of the 103 most-cited articles in the physical sciences in 1983 and 1984.[23] By 2007, "Supersymmetric relics from the big bang," a study Hagelin published in 1984, had been cited more than 500 times.[24] In a 2012 interview in Science Watch, coauthor Keith Olive said that the work he had done on this 1984 study was among that which had given him the greatest sense of accomplishment.[25]

Efforts to link consciousness to the unified field[edit]

Hagelin has attempted to combine his two area of expertise, linking Transcental Meditation's view of consciousness with physical cosmology. Science writer Chris Andersen, Dallas Observer political reporter Jonathan Fox and physicist Peter Woit have written critically about Hagelin's research and publications in this area.[14][16][20]
In a 1992 news article for Nature about Hagelin's first presidential campaign, Anderson wrote that Hagelin, was "by all accounts a gifted researcher well known and respected by his colleagues" but that his effort to link grand unified theories of physics to Transcendental Meditation "infuriates his former collaborators."[20] He cited physicist John Ellis' fear that "people might regard [Hagelin's assertions] as rather flaky, and that might rub off on the theory or on us."[20] Fox observed that, while "once considered a top scientist, Hagelin's former academic peers ostracized him after the candidate attempted to shoehorn Eastern metaphysical musings into the realm of quantum physics."[16] In his book, Not Even Wrong: The Failure of String Theory and The Search for Unity In Physical Law, Woit acknowledged that Hagelin had published papers in prestigious journals that would eventually be cited in over a hundred other papers, but that identification of a unified field of consciousness with a unified field of superstring theory was wishful thinking and that most physicists thought Hagelin's views on this topic were nonsense.[14]
Hagelin's linkage of quantum mechanics and unified field theory with consciousness was also critiqued by University of Iowa philosophy and sociology professors Evan Fales and Barry Markovsky in 1997, in the journal Social Forces. They wrote that the connection relied on similarity between properties of quantum mechanical fields and consciousness, but that the parallels Hagelin highlighted between unified field theories and the Vedas rested on ambiguity, obscurity and vague analogy supported by the construction of arbitrary similarities.[26]
Hagelin was featured in the movies What the Bleep Do We Know!?,[27] What the Bleep? Down the Rabbit Hole[28] and The Secret.[29] What the Bleep Do We Know? was described by Michael Shermer, writing in Scientific American, as being filled with "New Age scientists whose jargon-laden sound bites amount to little more than what California Institute of Technology physicist and Nobel laureate Murray Gell-Mann once described as 'quantum flapdoodle.'"[30]

Maharishi Effect[edit]

In the summer of 1993, Hagelin directed a project aimed at demonstrating a force that TM practitioners call the Maharishi Effect; critics deny it exists.[15] Approximately 4,000 people gathered in Washington, D.C. As a group, they practiced TM-Sidhi techniques twice daily for several weeks. Using data obtained from the District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Department for 1993 and the preceding five years (1988–92), Hagelin and collaborators followed the changes in crime rates for the area — before, during and after the six weeks of the gathering.[31] Hagelin said that while the number of murders had increased, the number of brutal murders had decreased.[32] There was a review board – comprised entirely of TM practitioners.[33] Robert L. Park, research professor and former chair of the Physics Department at the University of Maryland, and a well-known skeptic of paranormal claims, called the study a "clinic in data manipulation."[33]

Politics, public policy and government[edit]

Natural Law Party[edit]

The Natural Law Party (NLP) was founded in 1992 by Hagelin and 12 others who felt that governmental problems could be solved more effectively by following "Natural Laws."[9][34] The party platform included preventive health care, sustainable agriculture and renewable energy technologies. During his campaigns, Hagelin favored abortion rights without public financing, campaign finance law reform and improved gun control. He proposed a flat tax with no tax for families earning less than $34,000 a year.[35] Hagelin also campaigned to eradicate PACs and soft money campaign contributions and advocated safety locks on guns. He endorsed school vouchers and efforts to prevent war in the Middle East by reducing "people's tension."[36] In a letter to presidential candidate Bill Clinton, Hagelin accepted Clinton's offer to debate "any serious candidate" and informed Clinton and Bush that the "Natural Law Party does not participate in negative campaigning."[37]
The party chose Hagelin and Mike Tompkins as its presidential and vice-presidential candidates in 1992 and 1996.[37] In 1996, Hagelin was on the ballot in 44 states as a presidential candidate.[38] Hagelin ran for president again in the 2000 Presidential election, nominated both by the NLP and by the Perot wing of the Reform Party, which disputed the nomination of Pat Buchanan.[39] Hagelin's running mate in the 2000 election was Nat Goldhaber.[40] A dispute over the Reform Party's nomination generated legal action between the Hagelin and Buchanan campaigns. In September 2000, the Federal Election Commission ruled that Buchanan was the official candidate of the Reform Party, and hence eligible to receive federal election funds.[35][40] As part of the ruling, the Reform Party convention that nominated Hagelin was declared invalid.[41] In spite of the ruling, Hagelin remained on several state ballots as the Reform Party nominee because of the independent nature of some state affiliates. He was also the national nominee of the Natural Law Party, and in New York was the Independence Party nominee.[40] During his campaigns, Hagelin appeared on ABC's Nightline (2000),[42] Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher,[43] NBC's Meet the Press,[44] CNN's Larry King Live,[45] the PBS NewsHour,[46] Inside Politics[47] and C-SPAN's Washington Journal.[47][48] In the middle of the 2000 campaign, Hagelin said that if his party's principles reached the "marketplace of ideas" and were co-opted by the Democrats and Republicans, it would be a victory.[10] During the 2004 primary elections, Hagelin and the Natural Law Party endorsed Democratic candidate Dennis Kucinich[49][50] and dissolved the NLP as a national organization.[51] As a presidential candidate, Hagelin received 39,212 votes from 32 states in 1992,[52] 113,659 votes from 43 states in 1996[52] and 83,714 votes from 39 states in 2000.[53]

Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy[edit]

Hagelin is the Director of the Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy, a think tank at Maharishi University of Management.[54][55] According to the institute's website, he has met with members of Congress and officials at the Department of State and the Department of Defense about terrorism.[56][57] Hagelin helped draft a paragraph in Hillary Rodham Clinton's 10,000-page health proposal. According to Hagelin it was the only paragraph in the document that addressed preventive health care.[10]
In 1998, Hagelin testified about germ line technologies before the DNA Advisory Committee of National Institutes of Health, saying that "recombinant DNA technology is inherently risky because of the high probability of unexpected side-effects."[58][59] Hagelin moderated a panel on stress at a June 3, 1999, Congressional Prevention Coalition caucus.[4][48][60][61][62]

US Peace Government and Invincible America[edit]

The American Bank Note Company Building in Lower Manhattan, former headquarters of the Center for Leadership Performance where John Hagelin resided on trips to New York City.[63]
Hagelin established the US Peace Government (USPG) on July 4, 2003,[64] as an affiliate of the Global Country of World Peace. According to USPG's website, the US Peace Government and the Global Country of World Peace were created to promote evidence-based, sustainable problem-solving and governance policies that align with Natural Law.[64] As president of USPG,[64] Hagelin presides over a national assembly of USPG state representatives or governors, who in turn preside over US Peace Government assemblies and capitals in their respective states.[64] USPG announced plans to build a national capital in Washington Township, Smith County, Kansas, near the geographic center of America's contiguous states.[65] The offices for the U.S. Peace Government are located in Maharishi Vedic City, Iowa;[66] in 2004 the office of the President was at The Jefferson Hotel in Washington, D.C.[67]
Hagelin is the founder and International Director of the Global Union of Scientists for Peace, an international organization of prominent scientists opposed to nuclear proliferation and war.[64][68] Maharishi Mahesh Yogi appointed Hagelin the "Raja of Invincible America" on November 19, 2007. As Raja, Hagelin organized the Invincible America Assembly in Fairfield, Iowa, in July 2006. The assembly comprises individuals practicing Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi techniques twice daily. In a press release, Hagelin predicted that as the group's size increased "towards 3500, the world press will have more and more good news to report from America."[69] Hagelin and his Institute for Science Technology and Public Policy website predicted that when the number of assembly participants reached 2,500, America would have a major drop in crime and a major reduction in social and political woes.[70] In July 2007,[71] Hagelin said that the Assembly was responsible for the Dow Jones Industrial Average reaching a record high of 14,022 earlier that month and predicted that the Dow would top 17,000 within a year.[71][72]

Enlightened Audio Designs Corporation[edit]

In 1990, Hagelin founded Enlightened Audio Designs Corporation (EAD) with electronics engineer Alastair Roxburgh.[73] As President and Director of Research for EAD, Hagelin designed and manufactured high-end digital-to-analog (D-to-A) converters, which were critically acclaimed.[74] In 1995, EAD was the first company in the world to develop and commercialize home theater surround-sound processors incorporating multi-channel digital surround-sound technologies, such as Dolby Digital and DTS.[73] In 2001, EAD Corporation was sold to the Oregon-based company, Alpha Digital Technologies.[73][75]

Kilby award[edit]

In 1992, Hagelin received a Kilby International Award from the North Dallas Chamber of Commerce. He was nominated by a fellow TM practitioner who served on the Kilby selection committee.[20][76] The award honored his work in particle physics leading to the development of supersymmetric grand unified field theories.[77] Chris Anderson, in his 1992 Nature article about Hagelin's first presidential campaign, questioned the value of the award.[20]

Books and articles[edit]

  • Hagelin, J.S. Manual for a Perfect Government: How to harness the laws of nature to bring maximum success to governmental administration. Maharishi University of Management Press, 1998.
  • Hagelin, J: Is consciousness the unified field? A field theorist's perspective. Modern Science and Vedic Science 1, 1987, pp 29–87.
  • Hagelin, JS: Restructuring physics from its foundation in light of Maharishi's Vedic Science. Modern Science and Vedic Science 3, 1989, pp 3–72.


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  26. Jump up ^ Fales & Markovsky 1997, pp. 511–525.
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  30. Jump up ^ Shermer 2005, p. 234.
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  37. ^ Jump up to: a b Farley & McKissack 1996, p. 70.
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  39. Jump up ^ Corrado et al. 2005, p. 194.
  40. ^ Jump up to: a b c Herrnson & Green 2002, p. 111.
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  42. Jump up ^ Hagelin Nightline 2000.
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  63. Jump up ^ Oshrat 2009.
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  65. Jump up ^ USPG Structure 2011.
  66. Jump up ^ contact 2011.
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  68. Jump up ^ Release 2007.
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  70. Jump up ^ Invincible 2008.
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  72. Jump up ^ Litterick 2007.
  73. ^ Jump up to: a b c Soo 2005.
  74. Jump up ^ Audio 1998.
  75. Jump up ^ TriCell 2012.
  76. Jump up ^ Lewis, edited by Jim R.; Hammer, Olav (2010). Handbook of religion and the authority of science. Leiden: Brill. pp. 361,362. ISBN 9789004187917. 
  77. Jump up ^ Kilby 2011.


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  • Fales, Evan; Markovsky, Barry (1997). "Evaluating Heterodox Theories". Social Forces 76 (2): 511–525. 
  • Hagelin, John et al. (1999). "Results of the National Demonstration Project to Reduce Violent Crime and Improve Governmental Effectiveness in Washington, D.C". Social Indicators Research 47 (2): 153–201. doi:10.1023/A:1006978911496. 
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Broadcast media
Online sources
  • "Campaign 2000". Archive.hagelin. October 30, 2000. Retrieved January 15, 2011. 
  • "Cast List". Retrieved January 15, 2011. 
  • "Dr. John Hagelin". Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy. Retrieved 2012. 
  • "John Hagelin bio". Maharishi University University of Management. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  • "On The Issues". Issues 2000. June 9, 1994. Retrieved January 15, 2011. 
  • "PBS NewsHour". August 30, 2000. Retrieved December 15, 2012. 
  • Rainforth, Maxwell (July 30, 1993). "A Rebuttal to ‘Voodoo Science’". Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy, Maharishi University of Management. Retrieved January 15, 2011. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Freedman, David H: The new theory of everything. Discover, 1991, pp 54–61.

External links[edit]

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