Transcendentalism and Transcendental Meditation
"The Transcendentalist adopts the whole connection of spiritual doctrine. He believes in miracle, in the perpetual openness of the human mind to new influx of light and power; he believes in inspiration, and in ecstasy."(Emerson 196). These two lines written by Ralph Waldo Emerson exemplify the whole movement of transcendentalist writers and what they believed in. Though to the writers, transcendentalism was a fight for a belief, unknown to them they could have been fighting for the betterment of human health. The transcendentalist writings of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson have directly affected the health of modern society through the idea of transcendental meditation.
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In his writings Thoreau set a personal example and put into practice the Transcendentalist principles of self-reliance, personal integrity, and spontaneous intuition. These principles are the very beginning of transcendental meditation. Some one hundred years after Thoreau wrote Walden emerged the idea of Transcendental meditation. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, a physics graduate of Allahabad University in India, brought transcendental meditation to the world in 1958. The Maharishi first began teaching Transcendental Meditation (TM) in India. After two years he decided to visit the West. Since that time, he has spoken and taught in over 60 countries, and almost half a million individuals have begun the practice of TM. The Maharishi's message is that it is easy to unfold the full potential of mind and heart and live a life of freedom, fulfillment and happiness, a very close similarity to Emerson and Thoreau. Transcendental meditation is A technique of meditation derived from Hindu traditions that promotes deep relaxation through the use of a mantra or A sacred verbal formula repeated in prayer, meditation, or incantation, such as an invocation of a god. Scientific studies have shown that the use of TM can decrease blood vessel blockage and help people avoid a heart attack or stroke. In