Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Changing Your Personal Probability



There was a study done at Yale University in the 1920s. It was a probability experiment that involved rolling dice and testing whether the simple laws of probability could be influenced by thought alone. In theory, if you roll a dice enough times, each face should show up an equal amount of times. Each number has an equal opportunity and chance to get it’s turn to play.

First the team built a machine and had everyone leave the building. The machine rolled the dice over and over and low and behold the faces showed up according strictly to probability laws – 1 in 6 chance that a particular number would appear or each number appeared for 16.67% of the rolls.

Next they had the machine roll the dice but with someone present in the room and thinking and willing a particular number to appear. This time, not so black and white as the particular number, lets say ‘3’, came up slightly ahead of the others. Not a lot to be convincing, but enough to draw a bit of interest.

Next, the dice was put in a cup and the experimenter was told to roll the dice in the cup with his own hands while thinking of the number 3 and willing it to be rolled.. and not just willing, but truly believing with absolute conviction that a 3 would appear.. . again the ‘3’ showed up slightly more than the previous experiments.

Finally, the experimenter held the dice between his own two hands – felt it being rolled, and again believed with absolute conviction that the 3 would be rolled. And (I’m sure you can guess by now) the 3 showed up a higher percent of the time than any other numbers. In fact it's odds were greatly increased with this experiment that it could not be concluded to be a coincidence.


Basically, the experimenter was able to find a flaw in the law of probability. By having a direct influence (dice in his hands) on the outcome and positively directing the situation (believing with absolute conviction a 3 would roll) he could influence the result in his favour.


Interesting to say the least. So what to make of this experiment? Well, it’s very similar (if not the same) to something called the secret. Which is not really much of a secret at all: any situation can be made in your favour with the simplicity of choosing how your thoughts are directed. At any moment what are you are trying to accomplish and achieve – do you realize the potential of your thoughts and deep beliefs? What effect they could have on the outcomes of your actions? Kind of like, if you can dream it and believe it, you can achieve it. If you’re having a bad day/good day, this can be simply changed by changing your thoughts. In essence turning the odds towards your favour or changing your personal probability laws. By believing in your preferred outcome with absolute conviction, visualizing it happening, the probability of it occurring are greatly increased. Not to say it will happen, but the chances are greatly improved.


It’s not just a concept that has no ‘scientific research’ because I’d say Yale university is almost as scientific as you’ll get. This was a simple experiment, yet showed us much more on the laws of human nature. So when you’re going about your day today, pay attention to your thoughts, surface and deep – are they going in the same direction as you? Don’t be the dice being rolled by the machine, allow yourself to be influenced by you – what do you want, where do you want to go – increase your odds, increase your probability, start thinking and believing it’s going to happen.

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