Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Uh-Oh, the Marharishi Died

How 'bout an Ice Cold Squishy?

What to say about Mr. Mahesh Yogi?

A few things.

When I was a kid, my mother actually practised Transcendental Meditation for a while. That was a unique detour for someone like her coming from such a conservative religious background. I remember once going along to the meditation center and upon learning that they admonished people to leave an offering, usually some sort of fruit, I became spooked.


Of course, like everybody, I have to mention the Beatles connection. I know that Ringo liked Maharishi "because Maharishi was always laughing". That's reasonable. After all, what else do you need to know about someone? Personally, I don't care if the Marharishi made a pass at Mia Farrow or not. I never understood why that was a big deal. If it motivated John to write "Sexie Sadie" then it was all worth it. Good chords in that one.


I experienced a brief encounter in communal living in the early 90s, while sharing a house with some well-to-do white folks in Pacific Palisades (if you want to call that a commune). There was a woman living with us who was the proverbial Earth Mother-type. She was very sweet, soft-spoken and she made celery soup on a portable gas heater --never, never on the kitchen's electric stove. She was also an ardent practitioner of TM and, while she didn't have a job, she was never short on cash. I admired her for that. 'Never asked any questions.

In a casual conversation about TM, Earth Mother Lady mildly boasted that there are people with such advanced meditation ability they could actually ascend into the air and levitate --AND she had proof of it all on video! Of course, the rest of us begged her to see the video and it took her a day or two to track it down. Finally, we gathered in front of the TV, greatly anticipating the amazing levitation demonstration. What I saw turned out to be a bunch of guys wearing light robes sitting in the lotus position. They then began flapping their legs, while still crossed, and bounced in short bursts --in effect, hopping on their asses across the floor.

I laughed really, really hard. The best reason I can give is that it was funny. And, yet, I remained on very good terms with the earth-mother lady, although I have no idea where she is now.

And now you know the rest of the story.


Charley Ramabarley said...

Thanks for the post. You know I'm out of touch with the media when I see world news first on Bloggy-Blog.

Interesting, I didn't know your mom did TM. (I do remember her listening to a conspiracy-focused radio guy named Roy?).

I did TM for a couple of years in high school. Occasionally but not regularly in the present day. Jerry Kestenberg also did TM.

I think the meditation technique is helpful in itself. I have problems with the cult-like (I wouldn't call TM a real cult) deference to a guru, in TM or any other organization. I get especially irked when Maharishi makes (made) pseudo-scientific claims like: if x percent of a population meditates, crime will go down. That is magical thinking, my friend, not science.

But not to be harshing on the guy. The world is a better place for Maharishi having been here.

Anonymous said...

What will David Lynch do now? He thought TM would be the salvation of us all, and hung with MMY.

Cocovan said...

I was at a mexican resurant the other evening and they had a delightful "Marharishi" band playing there, I think you got your facts wrong mister........

Geritopia said...

I'm so relieved. I just crave that Oom-Pa-Pa music.

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