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Maharishi Mahesh Yogi of Transcendental Meditation Movement Retreats into Silence

Several newspapers around the world are reporting that Maharishi Mahesh Yogi of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) movement has retreated into near complete silence. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi is presently staying at Vlodrop village in Netherlands where the Transcendental Meditation movement is now headquartered. Maharishi has also given up the administrative works, which included running of a TM global network with a membership of nearly 6 million people.

Transcendental Meditation is a 20-minute daily routine in which a person silently focuses on a mantra to induce relaxation and experiences a state of pure consciousness. The meditation technique is practiced twice daily and it has been scientifically proved that TM reduces stress, blood pressure, insomnia and pain. Critics are of the opinion that it provides nothing more than the usual stress relaxation techniques.

Mahesh Prasad Varma, later he became Mahesh Yogi, was born at Madhya Pradesh in India in 1917. He has a degree in physics from Allahabad University. For several years, he worked as a secretary to a Hindu Sanyasi. Then he retreated into the mountains and returned in 1955 to teach Transcendental Meditation. In 1959, he migrated to the Untied States.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi got noticed and instantly became famous in the 1960’s when the popular Beatles (Music Group) approached him, for spiritual advice to overcome the intense confusion and depression caused by the death of Brian Epstein, the then manager of Beatles. Soon Maharishi attracted many celebrity followers and the TM movement spread around the world.

In recent years, Maharishi was noted for this promotion of World Peace, a big business empire with interests in real estate, Ayurveda, cosmetics, universities and schools. He also garnered a lot of media attention for his Yogic Flying technique – a practice that involves sitting in the yoga lotus position and bouncing into the air.

He has authored several books and the most famous among these are Science of Being and the Art of Living: Transcendental Meditation and Maharishi Mahesh Yogi on the Bhagavad Gita.

For the past two decades, Maharishi has been staying at a secluded forest near Vlodrop, a Dutch village, near German border. He has been constantly talking to his followers around the globe through television and the internet.

It is being widely believed that the present silence of Mahesh Yogi is for the preparation to write a commentary on the Vedas.

Western newspapers might find the sudden retreat into silence of an active man unusual. But for people closely following the Sanatana Dharma tradition this is only a usual phenomenon. Great souls of past and present are known to enter into silence. In silence some contemplate and some experience intense bliss. One might occasionally notice tears of bliss trickling down from these great souls. That moment in beyond description we might loosely say from outside that they have merged with Brahman or they realize they are Brahman.