Secret TM Nighttime Techniques
First Time Anywhere!
From the late '60s through at least the late '80s, various advanced technique teachers in the TM Movement instructed long-term TMers in the infamous "Nighttime Technique."
As is so often the case, this "advanced technique" has varied wildly over time. Below are variations revealed by anonymous long-term practitioners.
We provide info on the bliss, primordial sound, and nighttime techniques below. If you think your head might explode (medical term) or you might otherwise come to harm by reading this, please read no further. You could, of course, just save this message without reading it until some day in the future when you want to save yourself 700 bucks or more. We absolutely do not recommend that you practice or even try these techniques. We struggle with the idea that we are doing people a disservice by providing information about something which may cause them harm. But we count it more compelling to expose the secrets and give people the dignity of making their own choices.
- 1968, Instructor: Sattyanand
- I was taught in a group. After a puja given by a local initiator, four or five of us went into a room with Sattyanand. When everyone was seated comfortably he reached over and switched off the light. After a minute or two he told us to place our attention on the darkness without opening the eyes. The instruction was to sit up in bed, rest the attention on the darkness, and return to it whenever we felt thoughts coming. As soon as we began to feel drowsy, we were supposed to lie down very gently and allow ourselves to fall asleep.
No mention of knees, and no mention of the space in front of the nose -- yet another version of the technique I've seen described elsewhere.
Also, my sleep technique wasn't free. Can't remember the fee, but it wasn't cheap.
All these variations only serve to confirm my suspicion that MMY made up the advanced techniques as he went along. It would be interesting to put together an advanced technique version of the comparative mantra list, showing what was taught, to whom, and at what time.
Another anomaly: my second technique was the standard 'namah' addition, but my third technique, received from Sattyanand in 1976, was "place the attention on the region of the heart."
- 1969, Instructor: Sattyanand
- Ah, nice to run into another recipient of the legendary sleep technique.
Satyanand's method was to sit at the side of your bed and put your attention above your knees and imagine that everything below the knees was dark. This was in 1969 at a Lake Arrowhead weekend course given by him. It was useless as was all advanced techniques in my opinion. At least it was free.
I found it to be a dead loss. It was supposed to facilitate deep, restful sleep and a smooth transition into cosmic consciousness.
When I went back to Sattyanand for checking, I told him that the technique had disturbed my usual pattern of sleep. He asked me if I'd ever taken drugs. I said no. End of check.
I gave up the technique after a few months. A year or so later I found out, by accident, that the technique had been 'dropped'.
- Late '60s, Instructor: Rhagvendra
- I was taught the sleep method by my good friend Rhagvendra it was just as [the above writer says].
- 1986, Instructor: Deepak Chopra
- Bliss technique: I was instructed to put my attention briefly on the heart region before beginning regular TM, and then to allow the mantra to resonate there as I meditated. He suggested that I would feel warm flows of "soma" emanating there. During rest afterwards, I was supposed to hold awareness of the entire body -- especially the circulating soma -- in my awareness.
Nighttime Technique: I was taught a "sleep technique" by Chopra in 1985 or 86. It consisted of placing my awareness on my heart area briefly, holding awareness of my entire body in my consciousness, and when I began the mantra allowing it to resonate in my heart area. I was supposed to do this for 5 to 10 minutes just before sleep then during the two minutes of silence continue to feel the body (particularly "soma flows") and allow myself to drift into sleep feeling the body.
I found that it did in fact promote what I used to think of as "witnessing" -- and now am pretty sure was a form of sleep disturbance.
I'm pretty sure that Chopra at least was teaching this technique to some as part of his Maharishi-approved teachings until the end.
He also encouraged me to meditate thus for 5 or 10 minutes whenever I experienced a stressful situation -- or felt I lost my feeling of "bliss." Was instructed in the Old Pacific Palisades facility.
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