Author's Note

Introduction

Chapter 1

Chapter 2
Is There Time?
Purpose of TM
TM and Science
Creativity & Intelligence
Self-Referral Awareness
4th State of Consciousness
Full Mental Potential
Research Charts

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Appendix A

Appendix B

Appendix C

Site Home Page

 

 

C H A P T E R 2  (cont)

Experiencing Self-Referral Awareness through Transcendental Meditation

Maharishi explains: "In Transcendental Meditation the conscious mind comes to a state of self-referral awareness, which is the simplest form of human awareness where consciousness is open only to itself. This self-referral state of consciousness is the unified field of natural law.

"The supersymmetric unified field theories of physics have glimpsed this state of unity, which, through its own self-interacting dynamics, expresses itself as diversified forms and phenomena in creation.

"When the conscious mind identifies itself with the unified field through the process of Transcendental Meditation, then human awareness is open to its full potential, which is the total potential of nature's intelligence.

"As a result, thinking and action spontaneously become more and more in accord with the evolutionary power of natural law. By enlivening this most basic level, Transcendental Meditation is that one simple procedure which can raise the life of every individual to its full dignity in which perfect health, happiness, and success are the natural features of daily life."

The Mind-Body Connection: Science Studies Transcendental Meditation

When scientists first decided to study the effects of Transcendental Meditation, they looked to the body.

Why? Because there is an intimate connection between the mind and the body. Researchers knew that for every state of consciousness there is a corresponding style of functioning of the physiology. For example, when you sleep at night your brain waves slow down, as do your heart rate, breath rate, and other physiological functions.

So scientists predicted that if the mind does, in fact, quiet down and become more expanded, more awake during Transcendental Meditation, then due to the close coordination between mind and body, the entire physiology must change as well -- and it must be measurable.

The First Research on Transcendental Meditation

The first scientist to study the physiological effects of Transcendental Meditation was Dr. Robert Keith Wallace at UCLA in 1968. Dr. Wallace found that during Transcendental Meditation, the entire system gained a unique and profound state of rest and relaxation -- far deeper than ordinary eyes-closed rest. He also observed biochemical changes indicative of reduced stress, and changes in EEG, or brain wave patterns, that indicated a state of "heightened inner wakefulness" or restful alertness.

The State of Restful Alertness: A Fourth Major State of Consciousness

Analyzing his findings and comparing them to research on the three major states of consciousness, Dr. Wallace arrived at a remarkable conclusion. Transcendental Meditation produced a fourth major state of consciousness -- a unique state of "restful alertness" -- different from waking, dreaming, and sleeping states of consciousness, but also essential to the health and well-being of an individual.

Dr. Wallace's findings were published in the March 1970 issue of Science.

Since that initial study there have been more than 500 scientific studies on Transcendental Meditation, conducted at 210 independent universities and research institutions in 33 countries, including Harvard Medical School, University of Chicago, Stanford, and UCLA.

Much of the research has been published in leading scientific journals, including The American Journal of Physiology, International Journal of Neuroscience, Psychosomatic Medicine, American Psychologist, and the Journal of Conflict Resolution.

The research has documented the effects of the Transcendental Meditation program in every area of life, including mind, body, behavior, and society.

Brain Wave Coherence

One of the most significant findings shows that Transcendental Meditation produces a unique ordering, or coherence, in brain wave patterns among the different parts of the brain. And the longer a person practices Transcendental Meditation, the higher the EEG coherence.

Dr. Wallace, who now is Chairman of the Physiology Department at Maharishi International University and one of the world's leading experts on the research on Transcendental Meditation, explains the meaning of this finding:

"Higher EEG coherence produced during Transcendental Meditation indicates that the technique 'optimizes brain functioning.' This means that the brain functions in a more coherent, integrated style during Transcendental Meditation than during the usual waking, dreaming, and sleeping states of consciousness.

"Many psychological studies have shown that the higher EEG coherence gained during Transcendental Meditation is associated with increased intelligence and creativity and higher moral reasoning."

What is the cause of EEG coherence? "The increased orderliness and integration between the different parts of the brain corresponds to the direct experience of the self-referral state of pure consciousness -- the unified field -- gained during Transcendental Meditation," Dr. Wallace says.

Unfolding Full Mental Potential

What does "optimizing brain functioning" mean in daily life? It means unfolding the full creative potential of the mind -- and using it. And using this full potential means enjoying the state of enlightenment in every aspect of daily life.



"Every day I experience a higher level of mental 'peak performance' from Transcendental Meditation than I experienced by chance during those 7 games of the World Series," says Buddy Biancalana, former shortstop for the Kansas City Royals and a star of the 1985 World Series.

Sportswriters called the World Series one of the most exciting in recent memory, and it turned Buddy Biancalana into a national hero. Kansas City faced off against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Royals fell behind three games to one and then stormed back to win it in seven games. Buddy's sparkling, acrobatic defense and unexpected clutch hitting helped propel Kansas City to the world championship. It was the best 7 games of baseball in Buddy's professional career, and it came when hundreds of millions of people all over the world were watching on television.

"I was deep in the 'zone' during the whole World Series," Buddy recalls. "I had a tremendously deep level of focus, to the point where I felt I couldn't do anything wrong. I felt like every play was going to go my way -- and it did. It was a level of clarity I had never experienced playing baseball prior to that time -- or in any other aspect of my life -- and I never reached it again until I learned Transcendental Meditation."

Today, Buddy is a players' agent, scouting and signing professional baseball players and negotiating their contracts. He has been meditating for 8 months.

"Now, when I get up in the morning, I know it's going to be a great day. There may be obstacles, I may have things to work out in my business, but the core of me is always feeling fabulous, no matter what is going on around me. Every day is a great day."


"The most powerful benefit that I've experienced from Transcendental Meditation is that it makes my mind much sharper. It allows the haziness in my mind to be cleared away so that everything makes sense to me and connects to my own ideas. From that level it's much easier to study, and every subject that I study has a much more penetrating effect. I can't imagine being a student without it. I've also found that once I have that clarity, all good things in life are drawn to me. When I'm feeling clear and the stress is gone, everything just naturally supports me and comes my way."

-- Jennie Rothenberg is a 1993 National Merit Scholar and a first-year literature major at Maharishi International University in Fairfield, Iowa. (Maharishi International University integrates the arts, sciences, and professions with the study and development of consciousness through the practice of Transcendental Meditation. Maharishi International University is accredited to the Ph.D. level by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.)


"For me the experience of settled inner wakefulness and expanded awareness during Transcendental Meditation is the real foundation for successful decision-making. After meditating I have the mental clarity and alertness for laser-like focus on the details and, at the same time, for broad comprehension so I don't get lost in the details. I find myself continuously growing in insight and intuition, as well as in the ability to focus and analyze. In my experience, if you can have those qualities together at the same time, you're going to make the right decisions -- not only for your own success, but for the progress and well-being of others. Over my years in business, Transcendental Meditation has been a real competitive advantage."

-- Steve Rubin, Chairman and CEO, United Fuels International, Inc., one of the world's largest international energy brokerage firms.


The following research charts represent a few of the many studies conducted on the effects of Transcendental Meditation for developing mental potential. The charts represent the average benefits of the group studied.

[ Top of Page | Chapter 3]