All you wanted to know about Transcendental Meditation
Transcendental Meditation (TM) is a form of meditation developed by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1950’s. TM became popular in 1960s and 70s. Millions of people follow these techniques on daily basis around the world. TM technique has roots in Vedic method of meditation. However it is not related to any religious philosophy and could be followed by anyone.
TM has gained popularity in western world as various celebrities have adopted this technique for meditation. Celebrities like Cameron Diaz, Paul McCartney, Hugh Jackman, Seinfield, and Oprah are known to be regular TM practitioners.
Transcendental Meditation is done twice a day for 20 mins session each using some mantras. TM is a simple technique to learn and practice. TM can only be taught by trained TM practitioner in seven steps process. Almost all major cities have expert trainers for TM. Experts give secret mantras to practitioner to use it while doing TM. These secret beej mantras are not supposed to be disclosed to anyone else. Mantras are center of focus during meditation practice.
Various studies have shown that regular practice of TM results in major health benefits such as healthier heart, stress reduction, anxiety management etc.
How is TM different from Mindfulness Meditation?
Both these forms of meditation techniques have proven to achieve health benefits. Mindfulness is derived from Buddhist form of meditation- Vipassana and was popularised by Jon Kabat-Zinn in west. Wherein TM is based on Vedic form of meditation and was popularised by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
The main difference between Mindfulness and TM is that in Mindfulness one tries to train mind to focus on present moment and become mindful of whats happening. TM is done by using beej mantras through which one tries to leave present moment and achieve a transcendental state. No one meditation technique is superior or inferior to others. Both these techniques are well proven to provide good health benefits.
The key to derive meditation benefits are:
Disciplined approach: you must practice meditation every day, same time and possibly for same duration (20-40 mins are good duration to start with). You may try do meditation twice a day, once before breakfast and once in the evening before dinner.
Pick one approach and develop expertise on that. Understand what’s main philosophy of that meditation technique.