A relatively new type of practice, transcendental meditation teaches individuals how to avoid distracting thoughts and enter into a state of calm and abiding awareness. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who derived the practice from the deep study of the Indian Vedas and the traditions that surround them, brought the practice to the United States in the 1960s. Since his passing, several other teachers have arisen to provide instruction in the practice in areas around the country. The teachers generally supply their students with a mantra, a sound from the Vedic tradition that has no meaning. Practitioners silently repeat the mantra while seated in a comfortable position with their eyes closed. Individuals direct their attention to the mantra during the practice.
meditation has been linked to a reduction in chronic pain, anxiety,
cholesterol, and high blood pressure. Several studies have demonstrated
these connections, although scientific debate persists. Devoted
practitioners achieve a state of stillness and stability that is free
from normal mental boundaries. This peacefulness often has a direct
effect on an individual’s quality of life.