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Pauline Lerner

RIP Maharishi Yogi

February 8, 2008 at 3:07 AM

Last night, Feb. 6, Maharishi Yogi died in his home at more or less 91 years of age. He was an important teacher and bearer, via the Beatles, of transcendental meditation (TM) to people in Europe and North America and a symbol of the 60s. However, his teachings have become part of our culture and its effects will outlive him.

The Maharishi taught the Beatles TM, and they, in turn, brought it to Europe and North America. Initially, TM was perceived by many as just another odd way of attaining an altered state of consciousness, similar to taking mind altering drugs.

Gradually, people came to realize the seriousness of TM and its wide applicability to our minds and our approaches to life. Most, if not all, major religions of the East and West have meditative traditions. Even Judaism and Christianity do, although they are generally overlooked today. Meditation takes its practitioners away from the hassles of daily life, even away from their personal selves, to a place deep within where the Holy dwells. In this place are calmness, strength, clarity, peace, the inner source of life, and love. (Of course, the definition varies.) For people of faith, this is God within. I have been a practitioner of yoga, with a strong spirituality and mental states which are probably the same as TM, for over 15 years, and my experience has helped me tremendously. It is deeply relaxing, both physically and mentally, and it helps me get centered in a positive place.

I join many others in paying tribute to the Maharishi.

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