Imagine school-aged children being seated at their desks with their eyes closed – meditating. According to a recent article written by the London Evening Standard, this will be the reality for those attending a new London free school with an anticipated opening date of 2013. Students will receive instruction on Transcendental Meditation techniques once taught to The Beatles in a school setting; an idea that was originated by followers of spiritual “Guru” Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
Each day, along with their teachers, children will participate in meditation while seated at their desk with their eyes closed. According to Richard Scott, a leader in the bid for the Maharishi type schooling, children are able to think more clearly when their mind is “quieter”.
This quieter state contributes to increased responsiveness, which is ultimately seen in the results experienced. The school is described as a place where the focus is placed on the positive behaviors of students through the implementation of a “consciousness-based” education.
It is noted that benefits of this manner of instruction transcends socioeconomic status, benefiting not only middle class youth but inner city youth as well. Through the implementation of meditation in a school setting Maharishi’s teachings will reach a younger population in hopes that they might achieve more desirable, positive outcomes in the academic setting.
We already know many of the benefits of meditation, particularly TM – including reduction in risk of heart attacks, and relief from symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. It is interesting to hear that it is being introduced into a state funded school system as well.
Do you practice TM or any meditations by yourselves or with your children? We’d love to hear!
You may have heard of Transcendental Mediation as well as its founder Maharishi Mahesh Yogi thanks to The Beatles, or one of the many modern-day celebrities such as David Lynch, Laura Dern, or Russell Brand who promote it. TM, as it is often referred to, was recently the subject of a study conducted by the Medical College of Wisconsin.
The study followed 201 African-American patients with heart disease for nine-years, with some practicing Transcendental Meditation for up to twenty minutes, two times per day, and others attending health education classes to learn of risk factors, etc. Both groups continued on with their “anti-hypertensive agents and lipid-lowering medications.”
The results showed that the risk of a heart attack was cut in half by those who did TM! Professor of Medicine Theodore Kotchen said of the study, “These findings are the strongest documented effects yet produced by a mind-body intervention on cardiovascular disease. The effect is as large or larger than major categories of drug treatment for cardiovascular disease.”
Kotchen summarized the findings, concluding, “In African American men and women with heart disease, Transcendental Meditation, a technique for stress reduction, decreased the likelihood of mortality, non-fatal myocardial infarction, and non-fatal stroke by 47 per cent,” adding, “Consequently, meditation should be considered an adjunct, not a substitute, for usual medical care. Although provocative, these observations should be confirmed in other patient populations.”