Spiritual Growth with Transcendental Meditation
Of course, it's not just a matter of "reduction of stress"!
Transcendental Meditation is a simple effortless technique that aids relaxation, relieves stress and provides physical and mental energy. As such, it does not conflict with any existing beliefs, religious or otherwise. However, many people do report that regular meditation gives clarity and perspective to their highest aspirations.
We have already seen how Transcendental Meditation improves our body - better health, mind - clearer thinking, and heart - more loving relationships, but TM has much to do with the spirit - or the Self - as well. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of Transcendental Meditation, defines spirituality as developing the whole person - the perfect integration of the individual mind-body-spirit. This state is often called "enlightenment" and is the goal of any spiritual seeker.
When we meditate, our attention goes naturally inwards and the mind spontaneously settles down and begins to experience finer and finer levels of thought. Eventually thought itself is left behind - transcended - and pure consciousness or the Self is experienced. This is a state of inner wakefulness: the body is deeply relaxed and the mind is silent, unbounded and fully awake. On coming out of meditation, some of this silent reservoir of unlimited energy, creativity and intelligence is infused into the waking mind. We experience growth in love and joy, creativity and intelligence; we have less stress and fatigue and accomplish much more in life.
This is why practising Transcendental Meditation has a holistic, spiritual effect - all aspects of your self are refreshed - mind, body and spirit.
In fact, many people after learning TM report that their understanding and appreciation of their religious beliefs - whatever tradition they belong to - are enhanced and deepened. And many sceptical non-believers find that they begin to appreciate more the spiritual dimension to life which hitherto they had ignored.
"For more than 20 years now, I have practised
Transcendental Meditation and it is as a result of the regular practice
of this innocent technique that I have come to a deeper awareness of the
risen Christ and a profound awareness of his presence at the heart of
the world, and in all its conflicts. The coherence and peace which is
engendered by TM at a personal, corporate and global level, make this
technique an invaluable resource for unifying and strengthening the
voice of the church."
Reverend John Ansell, Anglican Vicar, 1992
But we must emphasise that Transcendental Meditation is NOT a religion. The roots of TM stem from the Vedic tradition in India where it was used to develop the full mental, physical and emotional faculties of seekers of knowledge. It is not a form of Hinduism, and no worship of any kind is advocated or practised during TM. Transcendental Meditation is a technique, pure and simple. It involves no worship, belief, philosophy or change in lifestyle.
In his book "Silent Music", Father William Johnston, a Jesuit, has written:
Leaders of other churches and other religions have also expressed their appreciation of Transcendental Meditation.
Any spiritual seeker in search of deeper fulfilment is warmly invited to discover more about Transcendental Meditation and unfold deeper levels of creativity, peace, stillness, happiness and bliss in their own life.
Pope John Paul II at Maynooth, Ireland, 1 October 1979