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    29 Discussions

    if the pyramid is built to proper proportions, it is a very unique experience when you just sit under one not to mention how much deeper ones meditation is when this strange energy is focused on a person. I have asked a number of people, skeptics, believers etc to sit under this pyramid, no clock in sight, then asked them to come out from under the pyramid when they thought 15 minutes had lapsed. They all sat for at least 45 to 60 minutes and said they experienced a very serene calming effect?...and insisted that only 15 minutes had passed.

    the placebo effect relates to a positive or negative effect to a person through suggestion or belief. A doctor gives a patient a sugar pill but tells them it is a very powerful pain killer and it elevates the patients pain. Sitting under a pyramid with no suggestion, just sit for a prescribed time period then observe a difference in passed time relative to perceived time has absolutely nothing to do with the medical term.."placebo" Now i am not saying there is time dilation occurring or anything like that, just an observation, plain and simple. Nuff said.

    The placebo effect is in the expectation, not the instruction (did you know that stimulants work better when the pill is artificially-coloured blue? or that the effectiveness of pain-killers is linked to the price paid?) - I am absolutely certain that you have never sat a subject under this "device" who has never heard of so-called "pyramid power".

    Challenge yourself - sit more subjects under the plastic, then when they have closed their eyes and begun meditation, silently remove the pyramid. How many will continue to feel the effects?

    I will confidently predict that the majority will experience the same effects as if the the pyramid was left in place.

    you have some very interesting point and obviously you are more knowledgeable in pyramid science. I just build them and am new to this stuff, thanks for your points...looks like i have a bit of reading to do....thanks Kiteman

    Save yourself the time - there is no such thing as "pyramid science".

    The only effect being exhibited here is, as I said, the placebo effect. Just like homoeopathic remedies and magnetic bracelets, they only work if believe they work.

    Agreed, but there is one point in favor of "pyramid science" that should be argued for this design - spatial awareness effects. Most of the pyramids that are touted as snake-oil wonders are wire meshes or frames, and are not solid plastic panels. For a design like this, spatial awareness may actually increase the placebo effect, simply by the person being able to "sense" the proximity of an enclosed object.

    I would bet that, no matter how silently and smoothly you manage to remove the pyramid (as long as you don't take hours moving it millimeters at a crawl), most people would notice that the pyramid has been removed, either by a change in local pressure (ear drums are fantastic for proximity sensing - try it with an old-school diving helmet), audio distortion/amplification of ambient noises when the pyramid is close, or (depending on the materials chosen) electrical sensitivity.

    Now, this argument does not diminish the placebo effect theory, but for the placebo effect to work, the subject needs to feel as if the pyramid is doing something. If they can sense, by any means, that the pyramid has vanished, I would expect this conscious or subconscious realization to override the placebo and break / intrude upon their meditation.  Granted, there are people who wouldn't notice a thing - even cat-stacking, for humans, I'd agree with you if the design tuxedo1954 posted was an open-field pyramid.  But anything that can distort ambient noises, something I am particularly attuned to (not as great as it sounds...), could be far more recognizable in proximity than a mesh or frame.

    holy cow!...this is an awesome gave this some serious thought to come up with such a well articulated informative thought provoking response...thx are so correct, when i sit under this structure i feel a warm pressure but it is probably due to the structure imposing this pressure and temp

    Heh, I never pass up the chance to argue (read debate, not strictly contradict - I like going head-to-head and learning simultaneously) with Kiteman...or anyone, for that matter. The guy knows his stuff, and always manages to bring an interesting viewpoint to the table - I hadn't even thought about the placebo effect, or my argument, until after he'd posted. That's why I like Instructables like yours - even if the device/design/etc. can be proven not to work, or the theories debunked, they spark conversations like these...

    Now as to your sensation under the pyramid, I can understand the temperature change well enough (unless you have ventilation or fans close to the device, trapped air could warm up inside the pyramid and become stale). I'm curious, though, have you ever felt this same sensation while meditating outside the pyramid's confines, or is this something you've only noticed in this device? Also, on that point, how "adept" would you say you are at meditation?

    Hi valhallas_end...I have been/am a mediator for quite some a young hippie i learned the TM method and have been doing it ever since. I know exactly when i move from beta to's a profound calm wave that is experienced. What the pyramid does is...shorten (*significantly) the time it takes to move from this active brain state to the meditative state...example..with no pyramid it usually takes me approx 10 minutes to get into theta...under the pyramid...two minutes flat...every single time. My meditations are so much deeper under the what i was told is.. a dome actually lends more positive energy than the pyramid shape..perhaps i will build a dome and see if the effects are the same. I still have a hard time with the placebo effect because TM..Transcendental Meditation is a form of meditation where thought is voided from the mind through the use of a there is no expectation as in a concentration type of meditation...hummmm?
    just an aside..that crazy pyramid actually detracted from the work in put into the stand..i had to laminate all those boards together...then plane flat..then using a Kutz-all...grind out a dish for the seat which inlaid with high dense foam finishing with hours of saddle stitching the leather seat and rim....then building the head piece was a real challenge..for me that is..ha ha because it had to be solid enough and straigh to hold the arms which supported the rather heavy hoo sounds like i am oh well such is life..sorry for such a long winded response...

    Haha no problems on the response length (have you seen most of mine? lol). It was an interesting design, though - I could see what you mean about the workmanship. Maybe you should consider upgrading the pyramid sometime - glass panels held together with lead a la stained glass would look fantastic (the way I see it, if something looks cool, whether it works or not, call it art - instant kudos for creation!). What was the pyramid made out of, by the way? It may be an interesting experiment to vary the materials used - try glass versus Lucite / acrylic versus plastic, etc. and see if you get the same response.
    That's very interesting about your TM experience - I'll definitely have to read up some more on this topic (most of my meditation knowledge comes from a few friends and some books...since I'm apparently terrible at most techniques). I'm curious as to how much of subconscious activity can be dampened or halted by TM...from what I know of the sciences behind meditation, TM mantras void conscious and some subconscious brain activity by sinking the mantra recitation to a subconscious routine, so I'd expect some level of subconscious activity to remain throughout the meditation. If this is the case, I'd still call the placebo effect plausible, since the belief that a placebo will work is a highly conscious belief, and must be maintained by the subject (willingly or not), similarly to psychosomatic effects of various drugs or painkillers, or somatoform disorders. It's especially interesting now as more disorders or side-effects are being linked to positive or negative states-of-mind...

    Lol..have you ever thought about going to law school..the way you would make an awesome trial lawyer... old friend once told me I'd make a good politician - that I could find great ways to spin words around others while trying to catch up and learn what I'm actually talking about...I guess it is something I've picked up over the years. I enjoy starting debates/arguments about topics I'm relatively clueless about - best way to learn, I think. Besides, I tend to approach every topic from odd, though...never really thought about it lol.

    if you don't mind me asking..what do you do now?...back to your previous response...i really took heed to your closing comment..."most disorders..are due to negative states of mind"..this, in my opinion, is very true. Disease is actually...dis...ease..not feeling at ease or feeling stressed..the opposite of ease. There is so much literature coming forth that supports the concept of stress being the internal trigger that launches cancer, heart disease etc. There is something to be said about stress management......I have chosen to meditate but there are so many other vehicles one could use to elevate being a hobbyist building all of the cool stuff we seen on this great website...

    I'm currently a grad student (mechanical and aerospace engineering) and research assistant, working on efficiency analyses of cogeneration-powered data centers at my university (sort of an energy engineering round)'s way outside of my ideal field (I did an undergraduate program in aerospace engineering), but it gives me free tuition credits, so bonus there...
    I know what you mean about stress-triggered diseases or disorders (frankly, the debates and studies on these issues are fascinating), and what I think are even worse are stress-induced habits...I've known people who've sunk into self-defeating habits (abusive drinking, drugs, cutting, etc.) or even more minor behaviors...I became a chronic fingernail biter years ago when I went through some very stressful events - still have trouble with that one...
    Heh, I'm also one of those poor, deluded fellows who believe DIY projects make good stress relievers...until the hobby knife slips into my thumb, or my logic controller burns out, or my transformer blows, etc. I think for me, DIY isn't so much a stress reliever by relaxation as a chance to blow off steam...whatever works, right?