Consciousness, Prayer, & How Kind Thoughts Affect the World
From time immemorial, the nature of consciousness and the mind-body connection—what it is, how it works—has been one of the ultimate mysteries.
Now specialists across a diverse number of fields are discovering tantalizing clues about positive awareness, focused intention, prayer, and the mind-body connection, particularly how consciousness affects the structure of the world.
One remarkable study by Dr. Masura Emoto, for example, determined that our thoughts had a direct effect on the structure of water molecules in ice crystals.
Under double-blind conditions, the test included 2,000 people in Tokyo focusing positive intentions on electromagnetically shielded water samples an ocean away in California.
Ice crystals that formed from the target sample and from a control group were photographed and the images were blindly assessed by 100 independent judges.
With results similar to previous studies suggesting that intention may be able to influence water, the photos plainly show that states of conscious intention change water’s structure and were actually more aesthetically pleasant than their control group counterparts. 
So thoughts can potentially affect water molecules, but what about the effects of positive thinking on health?
In their article “On the Power of Positive Thinking: The Benefits of Being Optimistic,” researchers cataloged and reviewed the numerous physical & psychological benefits of kind thoughts towards one’s self and others, as well as the importance of a generally optimistic outlook on the future. 
Similarly, once skeptical researchers are now studying the sometimes dramatic results that prayer and “distance healing” have on recipients. And while the anecdotal evidence and beliefs of the world’s great wisdom traditions have for millennia attested to the healing power of prayer, scientists are finally beginning to articulate prayer’s capacity for health. 
In “Prayer and Healing: A Medical and Scientific Perspective on Randomized Controlled Trials,” Indian researchers outlined the healing mechanisms of prayer—that it’s a form of meditation (and therefore enjoys all the clinically proven benefits associated with meditation), that it utilizes self-healing aka placebo effects, that it encourages spontaneous remission, and that it may constitute a “divine intervention.”
The authors cite dramatic instances of improved outcomes with prayer, even for non-human species (thereby eliminating a placebo effect), but conclude with a sober appraisal of the methodological challenges for studying prayer and its healing effect. 
Nevertheless, bit by bit, evidence for the power of thought, for the animistic inseparability of consciousness and the world, continues to mount from all corners of scholarship. We simply cannot ignore the mind-body connection and the implications of how it seems to gain us access to the world behind the veil (spiritual realm if you will).