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Should Buddhists Practice
Transcendental Meditation?

Below is a letter from a Buddhist that practices Transcendental Meditation.
B. Budhacharan, October 21, 2008
I was born in Thailand where more than 95% of the 64 million citizens follow their faith and believe in Lord Buddha's teaching. Being a Buddhist, we were told to practice compassion and kindness to all beings in our daily life and, in return, one can enjoy a happy and fulfilled life.
In 1970, I learned a mental technique called Transcendental Meditation (TM) taught by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The practice was very easy, natural and brought rapid development of the spiritual values in heart and mind. It was neither concentration nor contemplation but a simple technique that uses the natural tendency of the mind to move towards inner peace. After some time, I found this technique was exactly described in Buddhism as Nirodha Smadhi (free from suffering).
After some years, I learned the advanced technique called the Transcendental Meditation-Sidhi program that corresponds in Buddhism to the principle of Brahma Vihar that is associated with culturing compassion and loving kindness. My experiences, and those of many others around the world, have confirmed that the practice of the Transcendental Meditation and the Transcendental Meditation-Sidhi programs are completely in line with mainstream Buddhist teachings.
People all over the world knew Maharishi as a great exponent of meditation responsible for reviving the pure, practical and universal value of Vedic wisdom for people of every religion and culture. His goal was to raise world consciousness to bring about what he called, "Heaven on Earth." His main focus was on teaching and inspiring people to practice Transcendental Meditation and its advanced techniques including Yogic Flying together in groups large enough to produce an influence of positivity for every nation on earth.
Now, there are over 50 scientific research studies which show that when TM peace-creating groups equal to the square root of 1% of a nation's population practice these techniques, violence and crime decrease and peace, right behavior, and prosperity increase in the nation.
Maharishi tirelessly organized programs to elevate human consciousness and his accomplishments in this area are legendary. He taught that each human being had the capacity to do anything-just by developing their full potential within.
Transcendental Meditation can be practiced by everyone. It requires no renunciation, effort or level of education. In just a few minutes each day, one begins to unfold deeper appreciation for the eternal laws of nature that promote bliss and unity in life. I must say that the clarity, purity, and ability to get to the heart of spiritual knowledge and experience the inner light of life directly is Maharishi's gift to everyone. And to achieve this deepest knowledge and experience of the divine unity of life is the aim of all religions.
Maharishi always wanted to see that every nation in our world family was self-sufficient, healthy, and fulfilled; free of conflict, suffering and fears. He wanted everyone to live in abundance and higher consciousness. His desire was for every human being on this planet to experience full potential of Unity Consciousness in which the capacity of compassion, wisdom and virtuous action for the good of all beings is developed to its highest level and is permanently established as the norm of daily living.
In addition, Maharishi strongly upheld the importance of the precious cultures and nourishing traditions of each country. His teaching has shown that because Transcendental Meditation is a universal technique, anyone from any land could use it as a means to realize the highest ideal of his own faith or culture: no one is ever required to change any of their own personal beliefs or cultural traditions.
I am very happy to share my experience and hope that all Buddhists, and members of all faiths, have the opportunity to learn Transcendental Meditation-they will enrich their own spiritual experience while spontaneously radiating peace and compassion to all beings.
B. Budhacharan
Chiang Mai, Thailand
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