The Maharishi's Children:
Part 2, Generation Next in Fairfield
In Part 1 of "Annie's Story," an adult child of well-known TMers told
about the physical, emotional, and sexual abuse she experienced within a
TM community in Denver. (See
http://trancenet.net/personal/index.shtml/#annie for the first
Now "Annie" takes us literally behind the locked doors of the "Maharishi
University of Management" where she alleges a widespread culture of sex, drugs, and
depression is now entering its third generation.
Warning, very, very rough reading ahead.
Much rougher than anything on film.
But uncut and unexpurgated, this is "Annie's" life.
The Maharishi's Children:
Annie's Story, Part 2
I guess I should at least make my own point here and let everyone know
why I think that the Movement has a part in my abuse.
I am not saying that is was MMY's [the Maharishi's] intention to abuse me,
nor was it the Movement's intention to abuse children. I think that they
set up a perfect situation where abuse could, did, and does thrive by
creating an unsafe environment for people within their Movement.
My mother was and still is a firm believer in everything MMY has to say
along with many other intelligent, capable adults. She started meditating
when she was 17 and searching for an answer to her own miserable life.
She thought she found it in TM.
With this in mind, is it any wonder that she bought into the belief that I
was protected? She moved to "Heaven on Earth," Fairfield, Iowa! I was now
blessed enough to live with other members of the TM community. I was
[under 10], my brother [a few years younger].
Fairfield was a strange place. I was referred to as a "guru" or "'Ru" and
made fun of often by the local people. I was grateful to have other
meditators to be with. When we complained about this to our parents we
were told that we were better than the local people, more evolved, and
they were ignorant.
It was definitely us and them.
As a TM child, you have to believe that there is something wrong with the
rest of society for not accepting you. I felt a close bond with Martin
Luther King, Jr. "We shall overcome!" One day the world would see us for
who we were, although if they did they would have to be just like us
because we were better and once they knew this, they would join us! So it
was not really the same thing as the civil rights movement, but I could
still pretend it was.
It was summer [in the early '80s]. My mother had to work to support us as
well as adhere to the Creating Coherence Program [CCP -- the Maharishi's
plan for Fairfield TM "sidhas" to meditate together twice a day to avert
World War III which he predicted was imminent]. She was meditating for 6-8
hours a day. My brother and I were put in daycare in the Fieldhouse on MIU
[Maharishi International University, now known as Maharishi University of
Management or MUM].
Many other children from MIU faculty were there as well, along with other
TSR people [Town Super-Radiance, "lay" TMers in Fairfield who meditated 2
to 4 hours a day, while holding down jobs and family life]. "Dick" who ran
the daycare had been in prison, it later became general knowledge, for
bank robbery. And some claimed his stepdaughter was taken away because he
sexually molested her. But no one bothered to check his references. If he
was a TMer, he must be pure.
This is where the sexual abuse started.
Over the summer, "Dick" and some other adults and older boys forced to
watch older kids have sex. They led us in small groups of six or seven
down into the tunnels and Howard, the men's dormitory. Some of us were
forced to perform sexual things in front of adults and have oral sex with
And then there was the mental abuse. Sometimes they would lock us in the
boiler room and tell us there was going to be a fire and we couldn't get
out. We were very scared the first time. After all we were 10 and under
and we could feel the heat of the boilers. Kids cried and comforted each
other, "It's all right."
I was there with my younger brother. I had to maintain this level of
"everything is going to be okay" because there were younger kids and my
Later, when they kept doing this over the summer, it didn't feel like kind
of extreme terror anymore. Then it felt like this was just what kind you
had to do and when would it be over this time.
I think there were about twenty kids involved off and on. No one ever
reported it that I know of.
There were many locked doors, including fire exits. Sometimes we were lead
outside to underground tunnels. I remember desperately trying to escape
from the men's bathroom through windows. And when I did feeling sick to my
stomach because my brother was still inside.
I was used to this sort of abuse, in fact I didn't know it was wrong. It
scared me, but my mind kept telling me that it was ok. If it wasn't ok, it
couldn't be happening...
When I found out that I had to go to an overnight camp run by the same
people I was terrified. Most of the kids at this camp had also been in the
daycare with me, although the younger ones were not allowed.
I begged and cried, I didn't want to go. My mother was reassured by the
staff that I would be ok, there would be group meditation for the older
kids and Word of Wisdom [a TM technique for children as young as three
years old] time for the younger ones.
I was not ok.
I tried to call my mother but the staff would not let me. I finally snuck
to a phone in the middle of the night by leaving the campground and
walking to a phone booth. My mother talked to a staff member, a woman. She
assured Mom I was all right, some kids just have a harder time adjusting to
camp... blah blah blah...
There was more, similar sexual abuse from "Dick," a man named "Peter," and
other counselors, including older teenagers. The camp had 40 kids total,
but I'm not sure how many were abused. I only know what happened in my
cabin. It seemed liked "Dick" and "Peter" chose their victims, but I'm not
I was so happy to start third grade at MIU school [now called Maharishi
School for the Age of Enlightenment]. My life would get back to normal!
My mother [taught a course] so she could receive free tuition -- she did
not have a college degree. Many of the teachers were parents with no
The kids in my class did not know their academic subjects. I remember a
girl who would just sit in class and mew like an injured cat. She had
been in camp with me. I knew something was wrong with her, but no one did
anything about it, I thought she might be retarded??? The sounds she made
still haunt me. I wondered what was wrong with the adults, they pretended
like this was normal behavior. Later I found out the mewing girl was not
retarded. She is an adult now, and has full brain function.
We were told, we don't put our attention on negativity at the MIU school.
This is when I started to question the validity of what I was being
taught. I could see what was happening and I wanted answers.
I wanted to go home, to my old school in Denver, even to my dad. I felt my
life was spinning out of control and my thoughts and feelings had no
I was labeled by my mom, my teachers, and my friends' parents as a trouble
maker, damaged, and a negative person.
It did not make sense to me.
I looked at what was happening around me, I knew things were not right,
but I was told on a daily basis by my mother, the school, my friends
parents and teachers that life was bliss, that one day I would be
enlightened and any negativity was just "unstressing" [a TM term for
purifying the mind and body toward enlightenment]. With this in mind we
had the answer to anything. MEDITATION!!!
In the fourth grade we moved onto campus, in Frat 106. I liked it because
it was filled with kids, a lot of fun.
It was great to have so many friends living in the same building. During
program [meditation periods] I was responsible for my brother and a
Kids ran wild during program. There was no supervision at all. This was
not an isolated event within my family, it was the norm for many kids on
campus. With our parents in the dome for 2-and-a-half-hours every night we
were left vulnerable to whoever was around.
A pedophile's dream!
This leads me to a theory that I have no idea if it is valid or not.
Within the Movement not only is negativity not addressed, sexuality is
completely suppressed. Celibacy is expected of people. A lot of guilt
techniques have been employed to assure this. I wonder if there is a
higher rate of sexual misconduct, especially sexual abuse of children
because there is no outlet for normal sexual urges?
MIU is a college, college-aged people are exploring their sexuality. Where
does the sexual energy go? I don't think it is possible to meditate it
away!! I say this because I experienced so many incidents of fondling and
abuse from the college students and MIU staff, in my case a young male,
that to this day I am shocked and a little scared that there are so many
sick people out there in the world.
"Peter," decided to open camps and daycare for the kids of MIU. It was
located in another Frat. Unfortunately this man turned out to be sadistic.
"Peter" had been on MIU security and housekeeping, had access to keys of
any building he wanted. Unfortunately he was also very charming, able to
tell parents what he wanted them to hear. He and his wife opened summer
day camps for kids. I went to one session. He also had camps for "boys
only" -- especially boys without fathers.
Many of the kids were now introduced to drugs by "Peter" as sort of a
recruiting thing. Kids gave them to other kids too, not necessarily
selling, but using the drugs to get them to hang out with them and "Peter"
after hours. Pot and alcohol mostly.
This was my first big beef with "Peter." Because I wouldn't do the drugs.
I waited to the ripe old age of 12 to do drugs.
Sex often goes along with drugs and makes people a little crazy. I have
witnessed boys being anally raped by "Peter" in the basement of the MIU
Library. There are two little rooms off to the back and to the right with
locks. "Peter" was in one room with the boy, and I was locked in the other
room with some girls who took turns looking through a slat. I think there
were 10 kids or so who took part over time.
Parents used to hire "Peter" to chaperone birthday parties that he would
run by himself. The parents would leave them alone.
Many of the kids were doing sex with "Peter" and with other kids as
"experimentation." You could have called it consensual. Although now, as
an adult I see that this was definitely abuse. When you are drugged, it is
hard to put your finger on what is right and what is wrong, things that
you thought were consensual are not.
"Peter" and "Dick" began to offer children's martial arts classes,
claiming to boost self-esteem -- particularly for children without
fathers. Within the classes, "Peter" as "sensei" [master, guru, teacher]
developed his own little subculture, consisting mainly of teenage TM boys.
I personally saw "Peter" give drugs to young boys and heard that this was
very common. And again there was sex. Group sex between "Peter," his
wife, and his teenaged clique. One of my personal friends feels her life
has been ruined by these experiences.
The story was he would watch the boys have sex with his wife while he
would watch and have anal sex with the guys. It was a common practice.
The loyalty to "Peter" was and is unwavering even after severe beatings
and great mental humiliation. "Peter" would get fucked up on drugs and
then go beat the crap out of people just for fun. One friend of mine had
his arm broken at the dojo and had a hernia from being kicked in balls by
"Peter" and his clique.
"Peter" was eventually run out of town by a woman whose teenaged son was
beaten severely by him, around in the early 90s. When he left, many of the
kids who are now adults, followed him, or still think of him as their
This leads me to my sixth grade at the Maharishi School of the Age of
I experienced a very violent group rape by "Peter" and some of his
students. We were in the basement of a friend's house. "Peter" was angry
that I wouldn't go along with the drugs and stuff. He put me on a table
and had everyone sit around in a circle. They all tried to get my
boyfriend at the time to do it, but he wouldn't. So "Peter" and some of
the others did. I don't know how many.
I was beaten up on my back and kidneys where you couldn't see the
black-and-blue marks. I blacked out. It was a group of 3 or 4 younger boys
and 3 girls. I was in pain for up to 9 months later. My chiropractor
found a dropped. I know it was from this beating. Around the same time I
developed a severe kidney infection that I had to have treated by a
My bloody panties were brought to school and hung up for display in the
bathroom by a fellow student. Adults were aware of this, but no one did a
thing. We don't focus on negativity at MIU.
My friend remembers this incident as well as my teacher [from that time].
She remembers some "roughness" associated with this situation. I am not
saying she knew what happened, only that someone should have investigated
what was going on.
As you can imagine, I was not a happy child. On the outside I appeared to
be fine, although I was considered a horrible influence on the other kids
at school because I had a "bad attitude."
I was in a teacher's office, "Mr. Brown's," a lot. He hated me especially.
Another teacher remembers that I was usually in the office daily.
For some reason "Mr. Brown" seemed to want to control every aspect of my
life. I heard he did the same with other children -- especially since so
many Movement mothers raise children without father figures.
He would call my father in Denver before Christmas break with a list of
movies I was not allowed to see, music I was not allowed to listen to. He
told my father what time I should go to bed. My father was not amused,
especially given the nature of our relationship.
I would be in "Mr. Brown's" office, behind locked doors, for no apparent
reason. The verbal and emotional abuse was worse to this day then the
sexual abuse. I was told that I was so incredibly negative and damaged. I
felt like I was inherently bad and dirty, that everything that happened to
me was the result of my own actions and thoughts.
This was after other girls in the fifth and sixth grade staged a boycott
on "Mr. White" because he was giving us hugs and kisses that made us
uncomfortable. We complained to the teachers and "Mr. Brown" but nothing
happened to "Mr. White" until we took this extreme measure. He was quietly
asked to leave. I think "Mr. Brown" got nervous [about the boycott]
because not long after that I was kicked out of school [for being a little
outrageous at an assembly]. (I admit, I was doing it on purpose).
Now I see that is was probably divine intervention that I was out of that
environment, but at the time I felt like my life was ending.
I started starving myself. None of my friends could play with me any more
because I was such a "bad influence." What was told to me my entire life
was finally true, there was no denying it anymore.
I was still told that if I meditated I would be all right, it was not too
late for me. I just needed to be "checked"...
Bullshit!! I knew better.
My teens were rough, but I am grateful I was out of the Movement. I was
hospitalized for drug abuse numerous times.
Throughout it all, I never fully understood how I was affected by this, no
one addressed it even in the treatment centers.
I had my first child at 19.
Becoming a mother helped me to look at my life with objectivity I lacked
before. I finally realized I was a good person andI was not damaged.
I was ok -- even without meditation. I have been through a lot of shit and
I struggle with depression, but I feel clarity and hope for the future.
But adults still within the Movement are easily brainwashed. That is
pretty obvious by their actions -- changing their diets, dress, times of
awakening and sleeping ... doing anything to get money to go on courses
including taking out ads in newspapers to beg for sponsorship, giving god
knows how much money to the Movement for courses, herbs, advanced
techniques, ... giving up a wonderful life to move to a tiny town in Iowa
... sending their children to a school where a man with an SCI [TM's
Science of Creative Intelligence] degree is teaching High School physics
and joking about it ... parents leaving their children alone for hours on
end, just knowing that nature is supporting them ...
If you come to Fairfield now you will see that many houses have been
reconstructed so that they will have east entrances ... campus has been
closed off except for two entrances. This is because "everything that is
wrong in the world today is the result of a southern entrance" [according
to the Maharishi].
I wonder why MMY didn't give us this knowledge when they built the Raj
[the TM Movement's showcase Ayurvedic treatment center, built in the last
few years]. Now they are ripping up all of their toilets so they will face
Wow, I just realized I'm going way off track here, so, these things show
you that rational people will do irrational things if they have this faith
that they will reach enlightenment.
I just found out this last week of another incident that showed me that
this abuse just keeps going.
The MSAE school uniform is tights and a jumper.
One day a second-grade girl wore stretch pants and a jumper instead. "Mr.
Brown" took her into his office, lifted her skirt, and took off her
stretch pants. All behind a closed door -- even though secretaries were
right outside. This wasn't appropriate. In fact, I think it was
molestation. I know the child was really shook up. The mom took the child
out of school immediately. But no discipline for "Mr. Brown."
And in the last few years, there has been an epidemic of older men dating
and marrying younger girls, teens, that would shock most people. These
aren't isolated incidents. This is our culture here.
The other day I was at a friend's house. Her daughter goes to MSAE, she is
a junior. There was a note from the school. Apparently they are having a
meeting for parents on "what it is like to raise enlightened children."
They are addressing the joys of parenting enlightened kids.
When I saw that I realized that I need to speak out. It is not fair to put
that sort of pressure on human beings, let alone children. My intentions
with this story is to open people's eyes, and hopefully allow someone to
see that we are all mortal beings, and growth in life is not always easy.
The saying "no pain, no gain" is true. The nature of life is to grow --
like birth, even through the pain.
Annie Replies to her critics
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