"Yogic flying" aka "bouncing on foam"
Changing the weather?   Flying?   Dematerializing?
WORLD PEACE   or   WHIRLED PEA$ ?
Greatest Teacher in the World Today?
Myth #1: Supernormal Powers
New High From the
Maharishi: Levitation From Meditation;
The Maharishi's New High by Eugene L. Meyer, Washington Post. Monday,
June 6, 1977; Page B1, Section: Style. (Excerpts)
"The Transcendental Meditation movement of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi,
which gained a measure of respectability and a host of government grants
by scientifically documenting the effects of the technique, is now into
levitation and disappearing. The hard-core disciples of the Maharishi - who attracted nearly a million
people to their classes on meditation over the past two years - are now
speaking excitedly of 'supernormal' powers like levitation (lifting one's
body into the air), 'dematerializing yourself' and even flying through the
air 'like Peter Pan.' "
"At a press conference last week in Baltimore to publicize the new trend,
adherents declined to demonstrate their newly acquired skills, such as
levitating. 'We don't want to get into a circus, demonstration type
environment,' said David Sykes, a 28-year-old lawyer and TM teacher. The
one exception, he suggested, would be 'if a maximum of 10 people, but no
more, donate a minimum of $1,000 to the program. Then we'd show them.'
"The new turn in the multimillion-dollar-a-year TM movement comes at a
time when the number of new people learning the age-old technique in
official TM classes has dropped dramatically from a monthly peak of more
than 40,000 in this country less than two years ago to no more than about
"It also comes shortly after sharp tuition increases this March for all TM
courses. 'Movements don't run on nothing,' Konhaus said. The fees are used
to support the movement's far-flung empire, which includes substantial real
estate, a Los Angeles television station and Maharishi International
University, formerly Parsons College, in Fairfield, Iowa."
"David Ginsburg, 25, who dropped out of his father's Baltimore dental lab
to be a fulltime TM teacher, said he had experienced a 'refinement of
(hearing) perception.' What did he hear? 'I heard bliss,' he said,
declining to give further details. Sykes, the Baltimore lawyer, said that
people had experienced varying 'degrees of mastery' of the new skills.
Flying, for example, came in three stages, he said, and most were still
on the first - 'hopping,' or lifting off the ground a foot or two, going
forward a few feet, then setting down again. The other stages, he said,
were 'flotation' or hovering and, finally, 'actual mastery of the sky,
flying at will.' 'Like Peter Pan,' interjected another TM teacher present
at the three-story brick Baltimore center."
Movement a Cult by Phil McCombs, Washington Post. Thursday, July 2,
1987; Page C03. (Excerpts)
"A press release from
the maharishi's Age of Enlightenment News Service advertises his 'program
to create world peace' and is headlined: 'TM-Sidhi "Yogic Flying" Technique
to Be Demonstrated in the Nation's Capital.' "
"Haviland [spokesman for the maharishi, Mark Haviland of MIU's College
of Natural Law], said yesterday that 'hopping' is the first stage of
yogic flying. He added that 'hovering' and 'actual flight' -- the second
and third stages
-- have not yet been achieved. 'Given the results we've experienced so far,
we feel that it won't be
long before we'll be getting onto the second and third stage,' Haviland
said. He said the important thing is the 'coherence' that the 'flying'
creates individually and collectively, 'which leads to world peace.' "
Notes of a
Fringe-Watcher - Doug Henning and the Giggling Guru by Martin Gardner.
Skeptical Inquirer magazine, May/June 1995. (Excerpt)
"Vedic flying has
been the most publicized of the sidhis. Photographs
distributed by TM officials show devotees in a lotus position and
seemingly floating in midair. The photos are misleading. No TMer has yet
demonstrated levitation to an outsider. The best they can show is the
ability to flex one's legs while in a lotus position on a springy mattress
and hop upward a short distance. The phony photos were snapped when the
supposed floater was at the top of a bounce."
An Investigation of the Reported Effect of
Transcendental Meditation on the Weather by Franklin D. Trumpy.
Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 8, No. 2. Winter 1983-84, pp. 143-148.
Wherein TM movement research on the effect of mass meditation on
weather was found to be grossly misrepresented.
This study revealed that the concrete contractor checked
the National Weather Forecast each time before deciding to make a delivery
the next day and that the meditators sought warm weather only later in the
day, after the forecast on which the contractor relied was already made.
Myth #2: TM is not a Religion
Judge Says U.S.
Funds Can't Be Used Teaching TM in Public Schools by Marjorie Hyer,
Washington Post. Friday, October 21, 1977 ; Page A9
Section: First Section. (Excerpt)
"A federal judge in New Jersey has ruled that Transcendental
Meditation (TM) is a religious practice and therefore cannot be taught
in federally funded public school programs. U.S. District Court Judge H.
Curtis Meanor in Newark held that the TM program, also called the Science
of Creative Intelligence, violates the separation of church and state
mandated by the U.S. Constitution's First Amendement. Meanor's 78-page
opinion upheld the contention of the plaintiffs, who challenged the
teaching of TM in five Newark area high schools, funded by a $40,812
grant from the Department of Health, Education and Welfare."
United States District
Court DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY, Civil Action No. 76-341, ALAN B. MALNAK,
et als, Plaintiffs, v. MAHARISHI MAHESH YOGI, et als, Defendants
"The unreliability of proponents' characterizations of their actions and
beliefs is illustrated by the instant case. The first organization in this
country to offer instruction in the technique of Transcendental Meditation
was incorporated in California in 1959 by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and others
under the name of the Spiritual Regeneration Movement Foundation. Jarvis
Deposition at 858, 861. Until 1965, the Spiritual Regeneration Movement
Foundation was the only organization in the United States which offered
instruction in Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's teachings. Id. at 852. Defendant
Jarvis served as secretary of this corporation from 1963 to 1965. Id.
at 854. One of the articles of the certificate of incorporation, as
amended, of the Spiritual Regeneration Movement Foundation stated that
'this corporation is a religious one...' "
"To the extent that the standard recommended by defendants places critical
or determinative weight on the subjective characterization of the
proponents of their activities and beliefs, it must be rejected. The
inappropriateness of a standard which places such importance on the
proponents' characterization of their beliefs and activities is
particularly apparent in the context of an establishment clause case in
which the proponents have enlisted the aid of governmental entities in
the propagation of their beliefs, teachings, theories, and activities.
While the characterization of proponents is properly admissible evidence,
proponents cannot propagate concepts which society recognizes as religious
in nature merely because the proponents view the concepts as secular."
To view a copy of the transcript, see
MEANING OF MANTRAS:
"For our practice,
we select only the suitable mantras of personal Gods. Such mantras fetch
to us the grace of personal Gods and make us happier in every walk of
life." Mahesh Varma, 1955.
For a complete list of mantras and meanings,
MEANING OF PUJA INITIATION CEREMONY:
"To the Lord Narayana, to lotus-born Brahma the Creator, to Vashishtha,
to Shakti and his son Parashar, To Vyasa, to Shukadeva, to the great
Gaudapada, to Govinda, ruler among the yogis, to his disciple, Shri
Shankaracharya, to his disciples Padma Pada and Hasta Malaka And
Trotakacharya and Vartika-Kara, to others, to the tradition of our Master,
I bow down. To the abode of the wisdom of the Shrutis, Smritis
and Puranas, to the abode of kindness, to the personified glory of the
Lord, to Shankara, emancipator of the world, I bow down. ..."
English translation of the pujua -- required
initiation ceremony for instruction in TM, taken from "Holy Tradition"
by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
For a complete translation of the puja,
Also see additional information about the
from court testimony.
Myth #3: TM increases Creativity, Memory and Intelligence
increases, as measured by tests of both verbal and pictorial
fluency, flexibility, and originality. ... Basic memory
processes improve. ...
Studies of elementary school students, high school students, college
students, and adults have found significant increased IQ scores compared
to non-meditating controls over the same period. ... The meditators reached higher
levels of moral reasoning, autonomy and integration than has ever been
seen before in any other group." Quoted from
MUM research page.
Meditation Affect Grades?
by Carmen J. Carsello and James W. Creaser,
Student Counseling Service University of Illinois at Chicago Circle.
Journal of Applied Psychology 1978, Vol. 63, No. 5, 644-645 (Excerpts)
"Seventy students who took a Transcendental Meditation (TM) Technique
Initiation Training program were matched on the basis of sex, college,
year, prior grades, and first letter of last name with students who
had not undergone TM training. The TM group did not differ in grade
point average from the control group for the quarter after training.
The same was true for subgroups of 2 matched pairs two quarters after
training. No effect upon grades was demonstrated for TM training.
"Three studies in a publication of the Maharishi International
University Press, edited by Orme-Johnson, Domash, and Farrow (1976,
pp. 393-395; 396-399; 400-402), reported beneficial effects of
Transcendental Meditation (TM) on academic performance at both the
high school and college levels. Each of these studies, however,
either failed to isolate effects of TM form other concurrent
activities or dealt only with those particular TM trainees who became
'enthusiastic' about the practice.
"Domino (1977) failed to find standardized test support for a TM claim
of increased creativity, and other than in the TM publications and
pamphlets, no confirmation of improved grades could be found in the
literature. Because TM is marketed on almost every university campus,
there appeared to be a need for the present large-sample, well
controlled study of what happens to the grades of the run-of-the-mill
student who volunteers for TM training."
2001 College Rankings
, U.S.News Online report,
Of the 1,418 U.S. Universities and Colleges surveyed, Maharishi
University of Management had an academic reputation score of 1.5,
the lowest of all schools, all tiers.
DeNaro, Anthony D. Counselor at Law.
Sea Cliff, New
York, July 16, 1986. Former MIU legal counsel and professor of law
and economics, and former MIU
director of grants administration. (Excerpt)
"12. ...In fact, meditation was used as an excuse (probably valid) by my
students for not completing a project much in the way a "virus" or "the
flu" debilitates the average college student. The consequences of
intensive, or even regular, meditation was so damaging and disruptive to
the nervous system, that students could not enroll in, or continue with,
regular academic programs.
"Many of my students offered as an excuse for not being able to sit for
an examination or write a paper, the fact that they had a 'bad meditation'
or just 'got off rounding' (group TM) and haven't gotten
'back to earth yet.' "
Bensheim, Germany: (Institut fur Jugend Und Gesellschaft,
Ernst-Ludwig-Strasse 45, 6140.) Institute for Youth and Society, 1980
Among the 67 subjects studied:
- 76% of long-term meditators experience psychological disorders --
including 26% nervous breakdowns
- 63% experience serious physical complaints
- 70% recorded a worsening ability to concentrate
- Researchers found a startling drop in honesty among long-term
Outrageously Silly Statements
- "The planets are constantly influencing our life. This influence can only
be handled by programs based on Maharishi Vedic Astrology. ®" Maharishi
Vedic Foundation - October 2000 Newsletter announcement
- "Demolition is the technique," says Tom Brooks, chief
administrative officer of MUM. "With every old building we demolish,
we release more positivity and gain more support of Natural Law."
Explanation of why old historical buildings are being demolished on
the site of the former Parsons College. Golden
Domes Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 1, Summer 2000
- "These buildings promote creativity, clear thinking, health and
well-being," said Craig Pearson, executive vice-president of MUM.
"We look forward to the great good fortune that buildings built in accord
with Natural Law will bring. Now even our buildings will be lighthouses for
enlightened education." Explanation of (among other things) the need
for east-facing entrances to buildings. Golden Domes Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 1,
- "Note: According to Sthapatya Veda, entrances facing due east or due
north bring best effects for the health, success and happiness of the
inhabitants. Other entrances, especially south facing, should be avoided.
Recent research at Dartmouth University in USA indicates the effect of
direction on human neural activity." Design note on SquareDomes
International's order page.
- "Maharishi Mahesh Yogi is widely regarded as the foremost scientist
in the field of consciousness, and is considered the greatest teacher in
the world today." "Creating Heaven on Earth" at www.alltm.org
- "I will fill the World with Love and Create Heaven on Earth" Maharishi,
1959." "Creating Heaven on Earth" at www.alltm.org
As noted, Mahesh is filling something: "...Maharishi's world government
and international Vedalands, his enlightenment enterprises,
services and products [are] worth $3.5 billion plus..." And he has "plans
for a quantum leap in new sales and influence.(3)" Albert Miller in his
article, In the Name of Science, TM-EX Newsletter Spring 1991; (3)
David Friend, The Return of Mr. Bliss. LIFE magazine, November 1990,
- More to come...