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Vol. 2, No. 3 - Halloween, 1996

blackball.GIF "'Soma and the Gods"

Taken from testimony in the Kropinski trial, for many years copies of this tape were not even allowed to enter the continental US. Much like the Church of Scientology's OT materials, "Soma and the Gods" lays out the Maharishi's freakish theology in a way that the public is not deemed "ready" for by the Maharishi and the movement: a sort of parasitic relationship between TMers and the Vedic Gods.

"Soma and the Gods"

blackball.GIFWhat Does Hagelin Mean When He Says natural law?

The concept of natural law literally refers to the "Laws of Manu," the smriti or Vedic law to which every TM teacher must swear allegiance. With strict rules to maintain the caste system, strictures on abortion, and a definite opinion on woman's place in the world, here are a few highlights from your future -- if the Natural Law Party assumes power:

"The Laws of Manu: The Maharishi's 'Natural Law'"

blackball.GIFWhose Puja Is It, Anyway?

Most TMers, even TM teachers, believe that the initiation ceremony was written by the Maharishi himself -- or perhaps it has been passed down for generations. Tain't so. The Maharishi appears to have cobbled together scraps of Sanskrit poetry to create a "Hindoo ceremony" to wow the Western crowd. We include the true sources of the puja, with links to Sanskrit resources you can check out yourself.

"Whose Puja Is It, Anyway?"

blackball.GIFTM Dissociation Case History

Expert testimony from the Kropinski trial reveals details of a long-term TMer syndrome that may be familiar to many readers!

"TM Dissociation Case History"

blackball.GIFChopra's NEW! Mantras

Deepak Chopra wasted little time in staking out a clear marketing position, different from his old Master, the Maharishi. Clearly based on Transcendental Meditation, he claims the mantras he teaches in "Primordial Sound Meditation" are more precise than the Maharishi's. Have we been meditating with the wrong mantras all these years?

"Improving on Infinity" [being updated]

blackball.GIFBeatles! Beatles! Beatles!

Try as he might, the Maharishi can't shake his most famous pupils. In this incredibly well-researched article, author Greg Panfile's "Inner Lite: The Beatles and the Maharishi, 1967-68" opines that the Fab Four's brush with the Maharishi "dealt a hammer blow to the international pedestal they had occupied almost uninterruptedly for four years. They would never be exactly the same again..."

"Inner Lite: The Beatles and the Maharishi, 1967-68"

blackball.GIFTM Ineffective in Prisons

Turns out that TM is affecting elections in ways beyond the Natural Law Party. In Massachusetts, the gubernatorial election may turn on US Sen. John F. Kerry's accusation that Gov. William F. Weld squandered nearly $900,000 in federal funds on TM programs for prisoners. According to the Boston Herald, TM was found not to promote any measurable benefits.Gov. Weld issued an apology to the state tax payers and promised that no tax money will be spent on such foolish programs again.

"TM a Laff-Riot in Massachusetts Prisons 1" [being overhauled]

blackball.GIF Critical Thinking after TM

Author Jennie Bergemann talks about regaining an objective perspective after decades of "magical thinking" in the TM movement. "As a former member of the TM Movement, I've wondered how I could have come to believe so many bizarre things. I've been concerned that some of the conditioning was so effective that I still may be thinking like a TMer, without realizing it." Based on a university course taught by Prof. Barry Markovsky.

"Cults and Paranormal Beliefs: Perspective of an Ex-TMer"

blackball.GIF Stories: Knapp, Anon4 director John M. Knapp finally begins to tell his story. The heartbreaking "Anon4" is told by Psychiatrist Gary Glass -- with implications for all long-term TMers.

New Personal Stories

blackball.GIFTM News Archive

We add articles on a nearly daily basis to the largest TM news archive on the Web!

TM News Archive

blackball.GIFPast Issues of TranceNet

Two years of in-depth, independent, investigative research on the Maharishi, Transcendental Meditation, Maharishi Ayur Veda, and more!

Past Issues of TranceNet

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Creation has two sides: intelligence, which is the cause of everything, and the manifestations of intelligence, which are the physical and psychological features of the everyday world. Because Transcendental Meditation directly approaches intelligence, rather than the manifestations of intelligence, it solves problems by introducing harmony and well-being at the most basic level, and not by dealing with problems themselves. That's why it is so effective.

Consider this example: The gardener supplies water to the root of a tree. That water, that nourishment, then reaches all parts of the tree - leaves, branches, flowers, fruit - through the sap. We can think of the sap as analogous to intelligence and the green leaves or yellow flowers as analogous to the manifestations of the intelligence. The leaves and flowers are the intelligence of the sap, after it has been transformed. So intelligence - like the leaves and flowers of a tree - appears as the many different forms of manifest life. Those manifestations include every aspect of existence, from the material and physiological, through the psychological, intellectual, and spiritual. All of those features of life come from transformations of intelligence. In meditation, we directly meet this essential intelligence. Therefore, we have the possibility of nourishing all of its other levels, and thus all levels of manifestation, in a way that is harmoniously related to the whole universe.

How is Transcendental Meditation different from the various other forms of meditation?

Maharishi: The basic difference is that Transcendental Meditation, in addition to its simplicity, concerns itself only with the mind. Other systems often involve some additional aspects with which the mind is associated, such as breathing or physical exercises. They can be a little complicated because they deal with so many things. But with Transcendental Meditation there is no possibility of any interference. So we say this is the all-simple program, enabling the conscious mind to fathom the whole range of its existence.

Transcendental Meditation ranges from active mind - or performing mind - to quiet mind - or resting mind. In this resting mind, one has purity and simplicity, uninvolved with anything other than the mind, uninvolved with any other practice. In Transcendental Meditation, because we deal only with the mind, we nourish all expressions of intelligence.

The mind meditates, gains Transcendental Consciousness and brings about transformation in different fields of manifestation. All fields of life, which are the expression of intelligence, are nourished or transformed and made better through experiencing Transcendental Consciousness.

The mind, of course, is always concerned with other aspects, such as the physiology of the body, the environment, and the whole universe for that matter. But since Transcendental Meditation deals only with the performance of the mind, from its active states to its settled state, it remains unconcerned with those other aspects, though it deals with them all, because intelligence deals with them all. -- Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, unknown interview, copyright presumablyheld by Maharishi Vedic University, The Maharishi Foundation, or another group within the TM family.

Cults come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Categories of cults that are recruiting successfully today include:

Eastern meditation: characterized by belief in God-consciousness, becoming one with God. The leader usually distorts and Eastern-based philosophy or religion. Members sometimes learn to disregard worldly possessions and may take on an ascetic lifestyle. Techniques used: meditation, repeated mantras, altered states of consciousness, trance states.

Religious: marked by belief in salvation, afterlife, sometimes combined with an apocalyptic view. The leader reinterprets the Scriptures and often claims to be a prophet if not the messiah. Often the group is strict, sometimes using physical punishments such as paddling and birching, especially on children. Members are encouraged to spend a great deal of time proselytizing. (Note: included here are Bible-based neo-Christian and other religious cults, many considered syncretic since they combine beliefs and practices). Techniques used: speaking in tongues, chanting, praying, isolation, lengthy study sessions, many hours spent evangelizing, "struggle" (or criticism) and confession sessions.

Political, racist, terrorist: fueled by belief in changing society, revolution, overthrowing the "enemy" or getting rid of evil forces. The leader professes to be all-knowing and all-powerful. Often the group is armed and meets in secret with coded language, handshakes, and other ritualized practices. Members consider themselves an elite cadre ready to go to battle. Techniques used: paramilitary training, reporting on one another, guilt, fear, struggle sessions, instilled paranoia, long hours of indoctrination. -- Captive Hearts, Captive Minds, Lalich and Tobias, Hunter House, 1993.