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Transcendental Meditation, Self-Actualization, and Psychological Health: A Conceptual Overview and Statistical Meta-analysis

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Abstract

Presents a life-span model of development based on the Vedic psychology of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. This model proposes that systematic transcendence, as cultivated through the transcendental meditation (TM) program, will promote self-actualization (SA). Statistical meta-analysis is presented of 42 studies on the effects of TM and other forms of meditation and relaxation on SA. The effect size of TM on overall SA was approximately 3 times as large as that of other forms of meditation and relaxation. Factor analysis of the 12 scales of the Personal Orientation Inventory revealed 3 independent factors: Affective Maturity, Integrative Perspective on Self and World, and Resilient Sense of Self. On these 3 factors, the effect of TM was 3 times as large. The magnitude of these consistent differential effects suggests that systematic transcendence is the key factor. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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... By contributing to the improvement of students' social/emotional well-being and their academic performance, the implementation of a QT program allows school counselors to deliver their services to a wide range of students. When students are calm, have the ability to focus, and possess enhanced selfactualizing abilities (Alexander et al., 1991), school counselors can focus on designing and delivering effective programs to groups of students rather than dealing with a constant stream of one crisis after another. The findings of studies conducted at schools with QT programs demonstrated significant improvement in self-esteem and reduction in anxiety, depression, and stress (Valosek et al., 2019;Wendt et al., 2015). ...
... When students are calm, have the ability to focus, and possess enhanced self-actualizing abilities (Alexander et al., 1991), school counselors can focus on designing and delivering effective programs to groups of students rather than dealing with a constant stream of one crisis after another. ...
... The QT program utilizes the technique of TM, as distinct from other forms of meditation, based on research over the past 40 years demonstrating improved neurophysiological functioning (Travis & Shear, 2010). Studies on TM have demonstrated subjects' improved physiological functioning with wideranging benefits such as decreased psychological distress (Eppley et al., 1989;Nidich et al. 2009;Orme-Johnson & Barnes, 2014); increased social and emotional learning competencies (Alexander et al., 1991;Valosek et al., 2019); increased student capacity for self-reflection, self-control, flexibility, and academic performance (Rosaen & Benn, 2006); and decreased anger, anxiety, depression, and fatigue with increased resilience, self-esteem, and happiness (Wendt et al., 2015). ...
Article
This study explored the impact of a meditation program on stress, anxiety, and depression in a high-performing high school. Using a randomized controlled design with 52 students, the study took place over 4 months. Students participated in Transcendental Meditation (treatment) or silent reading (active control) twice daily. We observed significant reductions in perceived stress ( p = .040), anxiety ( p = .028), anger ( p = .047), depression ( p = .024), and fatigue ( p = .075), and improvement in self-esteem ( p = .054). The program has important implications for school counselors because of the impact on social/emotional well-being.
... A random assignment study by Shecter (1978) found that secondary school students learning the Transcendental Meditation technique displayed after 14 weeks, in contrast to control students, increased energy level, increased innovation, decreased conformity, increased tolerance, and increased self-esteem, as well as decreased anxiety. A meta-analysis by Alexander et al. (1991) found that the Transcendental Meditation technique increased self-actualization more than other meditation or relaxation programs. Random-assignment studies also show increase in social-emotional learning among primary school students and emotional intelligence in adults (Valosek et al., , 2019. ...
... One question that might be raised is whether the structured quiet time in class, independent of the Transcendental Meditation technique, may have been responsible for the effects measured in the experimental group. This possibility is unlikely in light of previous research on the Transcendental Meditation technique in which control groups participated in similar structured quiet rest periods (e.g., Alexander et al., 1991;Dillbeck, 1982;Dillbeck & Orme-Johnson, 1987;Eppley et al., 1989;So & Orme-Johnson, 2001). ...
Article
Academic procrastination is common among students, yet few studies offer effective psycho-educational intervention programs. The present brief qualitative study examined the effect of increasing self-regulation behaviors and self-efficacy beliefs to reduce academic procrastination among 11 undergraduate students participating in an intervention group. Results indicated that participants described cognitive, behavioral, and emotional changes and reported decreased procrastination through the intervention. In addition, a sense of belonging within the group and an understanding of underlying causes of their delay behaviors contributed to behavioral changes. The brief intervention program decreased academic procrastination and moderately increased academic self-regulation and self-efficacy. Taken together, it seems integrating cognitive, behavioral, and emotional aspect of academically related behaviors (e.g., raising awareness and familiarity with time-management tools, understanding restrictive thoughts) support the management of academic procrastination by students.
... When comparing secular to spiritually-based meditations, there is evidence that spiritual meditations are significantly more effective in increasing pain tolerance (Wachholtz et al., 2017), improved mental health, and subjective well-being . In a meta-analysis comparing various meditation and relaxation practices, increased health and mental health effects were found more often after the use of spiritually-based practices than secular meditation techniques (Alexander et al., 1991). ...
... When comparing secular to spiritually-based meditations, there is evidence that spiritual meditations are significantly more effective in pain tolerance (Wachholtz et al., 2017), improved mental health, and subjective well-being . In a meta-analysis comparing various meditation and relaxation practices, increased health and mental health effects were found more often after the use of spiritually-based practices than secular meditation techniques (Alexander et al., 1991). ...
Thesis
Research tells us that there is a positive effect of prayer on well-being. However, little is known about the mechanisms that underlie this relationship. In addition, much of the available data concerning prayer and well-being is based on Christians living in the United States, and our knowledge of how prayer and well-being are functionally interconnected in other faith groups is sparse. The primary aim of this study was to understand how prayer impacts well-being in individuals of the Muslim faith. Specifically, four potential mediators of the relationship between prayer and well-being were examined: optimism, spirituality, mindfulness, and social support. Participants (N=155) were recruited online and completed measures of prayer habits and levels of trait mindfulness, spirituality, optimism, social support, and subjective well-being. The data were analysed using a parallel multiple mediator model to test for the indirect effect of the mediator variables on the relationship between prayer and well-being. Optimism and spirituality were both found to be mediators of frequency of prayer and subjective well-being. Mindfulness correlated with both frequency of prayer and well-being but did not mediate the relationship between the two. Social support correlated with frequency of prayer but not with well-being and was not a mediator in the relationship between prayer and well-being. Implications of findings for culturally informed mental health counselling are discussed.
... The TM technique has been associated with improvements such as decreased anxiety (Eppley, Abrams & Shear, 1989), reduced health insurance utilization (Orme-Johnson, 1987;Herron, Hillis, Mandarino, Orme-Johnson, & Walton, 1996), decreases in overall incidence of diseases (Orme-Johnson & Herron, 1997), improvements in ego development and moral reasoning , self-actualization (Alexander, Rainforth & Gelderloos, 1991), creativity (Travis, 1979), flexibility in concept learning (Dillbeck, 1982), fluid intelligence, constructive thinking, and reaction time (So & Orme-Johnson, 2001;Cranson, Orme-Johnson, Gackenbach, Dillbeck, Jones, & Alexander, 1991). The study by So and Orme-Johnson (2001) employed randomized designs in three different schools. ...
... The study by So and Orme-Johnson (2001) employed randomized designs in three different schools. Alexander et al. (1991) was an exhaustive statistical meta-analysis of all existing studies (42 treatment outcomes) on the effects of the TM program and other forms of meditation and relaxation on self-actualization. The effect size, in standard deviation units, of the TM program on overall self-actualization (ES = .78) ...
Chapter
Management education is seeking creative innovations that can have a real impact on integrity. In this chapter, the authors present our recent research on the relationship between integrity in the brain, as measured by the Brain Integration Scale, and measures of moral reasoning. Further, they summarize research indicating longitudinal growth in coherent brain functioning, intelligence, personality maturity, moral development, and psychological health through the Consciousness-Based approach to management education practiced at Maharishi University of Management. This research supports a potentially innovative approach to management education that does not just address education for integrity on the level of ethical theories or values, but demonstrably transforms the neurophysiology, leading to changes in moral reasoning and heightened effectiveness of performance.
... When comparing secular to spiritually-based meditations, there is evidence that spiritual meditations are significantly more effective in increasing pain tolerance (Wachholtz et al., 2017), improved mental health, and subjective well-being . In a meta-analysis comparing various meditation and relaxation practices, increased health and mental health effects were found more often after the use of spiritually-based practices than secular meditation techniques (Alexander et al., 1991). ...
... When comparing secular to spiritually-based meditations, there is evidence that spiritual meditations are significantly more effective in pain tolerance (Wachholtz et al., 2017), improved mental health, and subjective well-being . In a meta-analysis comparing various meditation and relaxation practices, increased health and mental health effects were found more often after the use of spiritually-based practices than secular meditation techniques (Alexander et al., 1991). ...
Thesis
Research tells us that there is a positive effect of prayer on well-being. However, little is known about the mechanisms that underlie this relationship. In addition, much of the available data concerning prayer and well-being is based on Christians living in the United States, and our knowledge of how prayer and well-being are functionally interconnected in other faith groups is sparse. The primary aim of this study was to understand how prayer impacts well-being in individuals of the Muslim faith. Specifically, four potential mediators of the relationship between prayer and well-being were examined: optimism, spirituality, mindfulness, and social support. Participants (N=155) were recruited online and completed measures of prayer habits and levels of trait mindfulness, spirituality, optimism, social support, and subjective well-being. The data were analysed using a parallel multiple mediator model to test for the indirect effect of the mediator variables on the relationship between prayer and well-being. Optimism and spirituality were both found to be mediators of frequency of prayer and subjective well-being. Mindfulness correlated with both frequency of prayer and well-being but did not mediate the relationship between the two. Social support correlated with frequency of prayer but not with well-being and was not a mediator in the relationship between prayer and well-being. Implications of findings for culturally informed mental health counselling are discussed.
... The TM technique has been associated with improvements such as decreased anxiety (Eppley, Abrams & Shear, 1989), reduced health insurance utilization (Orme-Johnson, 1987;Herron, Hillis, Mandarino, Orme-Johnson, & Walton, 1996), decreases in overall incidence of diseases (Orme-Johnson & Herron, 1997), improvements in ego development and moral reasoning (Chandler, Alexander, & Heaton, 2005), self-actualization (Alexander, Rainforth & Gelderloos, 1991), creativity (Travis, 1979;So & Orme-Johnson, 2001), flexibility in concept learning (Dillbeck, 1982), fluid intelligence, constructive thinking, and reaction time (So & Orme-Johnson, 2001;Cranson, Orme-Johnson, Gackenbach, Dillbeck, Jones, & Alexander, 1991). Alexander, Rainforth, and Gelderloos (1991) Brain integration refers to the degree to which individual modules of the brain are working as an integrated whole. ...
... The TM technique has been associated with improvements such as decreased anxiety (Eppley, Abrams & Shear, 1989), reduced health insurance utilization (Orme-Johnson, 1987;Herron, Hillis, Mandarino, Orme-Johnson, & Walton, 1996), decreases in overall incidence of diseases (Orme-Johnson & Herron, 1997), improvements in ego development and moral reasoning (Chandler, Alexander, & Heaton, 2005), self-actualization (Alexander, Rainforth & Gelderloos, 1991), creativity (Travis, 1979;So & Orme-Johnson, 2001), flexibility in concept learning (Dillbeck, 1982), fluid intelligence, constructive thinking, and reaction time (So & Orme-Johnson, 2001;Cranson, Orme-Johnson, Gackenbach, Dillbeck, Jones, & Alexander, 1991). Alexander, Rainforth, and Gelderloos (1991) Brain integration refers to the degree to which individual modules of the brain are working as an integrated whole. BIS measures patterns of ordering between different parts of the brain (Travis, Tecce, Arenander, & Wallace, 2002;Travis, 2002). ...
... This is similar to the surveys done in the US and Brazil. 12,13,14 This implies that religion and spirituality is an integral aspect of people's lives, and must be acknowledged in holistic care. Indeed, there is growing awareness and debate in literature about the need for and methods to bring about integration. ...
...  Anxiety and panic disorder (Edwards, 1991;Hoge et al., 2017;Kabat-Zinn et al., 1992;Miller, Fletcher, & Kabat-Zinn, 1995 (Alexander, Rainforth, & Gelderloss, 1991);  Intrapersonal (self-directedness), interpersonal (cooperativeness), and transpersonal (self-transcendence; Haimerl & Valentine, 2001);  Empathy (Laneri et al., 2017;Lesh, 1970;Ridderinkhof, de Bruin, Brummelman, & Bögels, 2017;Shapiro, Schwartz, & Bonner, 1998); and  Sense of coherence and stresshardiness (Jadhav, Manthalkar, & Joshi, 2017;Kabat-Zinn & Skillings, 1989;Tate, 1994); Table 1. Brain centers associated with spirituality ...
Article
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Meditation is a term applied to a group of contemplative practices that train attention and awareness ostensibly to support psychological and spiritual well-being, usually with a focus on either breathing techniques or a chant/mantra that is repeated silently or aloud. Recently, meditation has been used in Western culture outside of religion and as part of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) practices to promote calmness and physical relaxation, to cope with illness or disease, to improve psychological functioning and balance, and to improve overall wellness and health. This essay examines and reviews current research related to the physiological, psychological, and spiritual benefits of a meditation practice.
... These characteristics parallel some of the fundamental objectives of meditation. It is not surprising, therefore, that the most widely measured positive psychological outcome in the meditation literature is self-actualization ( Alexander et al., 1991). ...
Chapter
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Mental health, once defined in terms of absence of illness, has gradually become understood in a more holistic way, which includes the positive qualities that help people flourish. This evolving definition of mental health has led to an exploration of other traditions and practices, including mindfulness meditation, which for thousands of years have been devoted to developing an expanded vision of human potential. One result was the introduction of the practice of mindfulness into Western scientific study. However, the original intentions of mindfulness meditation, to catalyze our potential for healing and development, have been largely ignored by the scientific community. Yet a small number of researchers and theorists have explored and continue to explore the positive effects of mindfulness practice. The chapter focuses on this pioneering work.
... 33 Meta-analyses on the TM program have indicated increased self-actualization and decreased anxiety, factors associated with emotional intelligence and perceived stress. [34][35][36][37] On the basis of prior research, a randomized controlled study was conducted to evaluate the effects of the TM program on emotional intelligence and perceived stress in administrators and staff. It was hypothesized that there would be a significant decrease in perceived stress and an increase in emotional intelligence resulting from TM practice compared with controls during a 4-month intervention period. ...
... In recent decades, empirical meditation research as well as mindfulness research and the use of these techniques in clinical practice have steadily expanded. It has been well documented that meditation and mindfulness-based interventions (MBI's) are associated with several positive outcomes, such as a decrease in psychiatric symptomatology (eg, anxiety, depression) or an increase in positive states (eg, well-being, positive emotions) as well as physical well-being [36][37][38]. Metastudies report that mindfulness meditation improves pain [39] depression symptoms and quality of life [38][39][40]. Furthermore other studies reported, it seems that spiritual meditation has a unique additional effect of reducing the negative effect [20,27]. ...
Article
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The aim of this study is to investigate different effects on pain perception among randomly assigned volunteers practicing meditation compared to a relaxation condition. The study examines whether participants of the experimental conditions (meditation versus relaxation) differ in the change of pain perception and heart rate measurement and in religious and spiritual well-being after an intervention. Method: 147 volunteers (long-term practitioners and novices) were randomly assigned to the experimental conditions with a headphone guided 20-minute single session intervention. The change in their pre- and post-intervention pain perception was measured using Quantitative Sensory Testing and Cold Pressor Testing (CPTest), their stress-level was compared by monitoring heart rate, and their religious and spiritual well-being by using the Multidimensional Inventory for Religious/Spiritual Well-Being (MI-RSB48). Additionally, dimensions of the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI) measured the psychological resilience of the participants; pain and stress experience, and the state of relaxation and spirituality experience were assessed. Five persons were excluded due to failure in measuring the heart rate and 29 participants had to be excluded because of high values on the BSI. Results: The meditation group showed an increase in their pain tolerance on the CPTest and a decrease in their pain intensity for heat after the experimental condition, in contrast to the relaxation group. Futhermore, the meditation group showed a higher level of religious spiritual well-being (MI-RSB48 Total score) as well as in the sub-dimensions General Religiosity, Forgiveness, and Connectedness after the experimental condition, compared to the relaxation group. Our data is consistent with the hypothesis that meditation increases pain tolerance and reduces pain intensity, however, further work is required to determine whether meditation contains similar implications for pain patients.
... The results of this research support a previous preliminary study indicating that TM develops self-efficacy (Lindon, 2010). Numerous other studies on TM have shown improvements in the qualities associated with self-efficacy, including 'self-confidence ', 'self-esteem' and 'self-respect' (Chandler et al., 2005;Dixon et al., 2005), 'optimism' (Alexander et al., 1993), 'problem solving' and 'resourcefulness' (Alexander et al., 1989;Alexander, et al., 1991), 'resilience' (Wendt et al., 2015;Alexander et al., 1989); and 'perseverance' (Alexander et al., 1993). Changes in these qualities reflect an inner development of life, bringing about positive changes in perceived ability to promote change in daily life. ...
Article
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Vulnerable women living in poverty in Uganda, who are primarily single, illiterate mothers, face high levels of physical and psychological stress. Our study assessed the impact of the Transcendental Meditation® (TM®) technique on self-efficacy, perceived stress, and mental and physical quality of life of these women. This single-blind controlled study involved eighty-one women who were assigned to either practice of the Transcendental Meditation program (n = 42) or wait-list (delayed start) control group (n = 39). Participants learned the Transcendental Meditation program over five sessions, then practiced at home for twenty minutes twice a day, and attended twice monthly group meetings over a three-month period. The primary outcome measure was self-efficacy using the General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSES). Perceived stress using Cohen's Perceived Stress Scale, and physical and mental quality of life using subscales of the Medical Outcomes Survey (MOS, HIV version) were secondary outcome measures. Significant improvements were shown in self-efficacy (p < .001), perceived stress (p < .010), and mental and physical well-being (p < .010). Compliance with TM home practice was > 88%. This is the first controlled study to demonstrate the effect of TM in the daily lives of mothers living in impoverished conditions. Further questionnaires were administered to participants at 8 months and at 36 months with questions about changes they may have experienced in their daily life since starting TM. “Yes”, “No” self-reported answers suggested that the women experienced improved health, improved relationships with others, and increased employment rates. These findings taken as a whole have important implications for developing self-efficacy, improving mental and physical quality of life, and reducing stress in the lives of these vulnerable women.
... Research results include improved cardiovascular health (Schneider et al., 1995;Castillo-Richmond et al., 2000;Brook et al., 2013;Barnes et al., 2016), decreased psychological distress (Eppley et al., 1989) and decreased stress levels (Yoshimura et al., 2015;Tomljenovic et al., 2016). Furthermore, research also shows increased emotional and learning competences; enhanced self-actualization abilities (Alexander et al., 2001) and usefulness for managers (Schmidt-Wilk, 2003). ...
Article
Purpose An innovative technology called consciousness-based education (CBE) is being introduced in schools worldwide. The approach includes both an experiential and an intellectual component. However, research studies exploring learning in CBE are rare. The purpose of the paper is to explore how organizational learning takes place in schools, which adopt CBE in addition to their ordinary curriculum. Moreover, the ambition of the approach regarding quality is examined. Methodology/approach A multiple-case study has been carried out. Four schools using CBE have been studied: a private school in Fairfield, Iowa, USA; a governmentally funded free school in Skelmersdale, United Kingdom; an independent school in Melbourne, Australia, and a primary school in Lelystad, the Netherlands. In total, 26 in-depth interviews have been performed, mainly with teachers and students but also with principals and experts in the CBE pedagogy. In addition, three focus-group interviews with primary school pupils were conducted and observation during classes was included. The data were analyzed by the constant comparative technique from the grounded theory approach. Findings Categories characterizing organizational learning in the CBE schools have been identified. These findings are related to theories of the learning organization, resulting in a framework depicting different components of learning. Research limitation/implication The study provides a framework illustrating organizational learning in schools that utilize CBE which affords an overview of the technology and can serve as a vantage point for further research. Since this is a qualitative case study, the effectiveness of the CBE approach and its impact on learning outcomes were not assessed, and the possibilities to generalize the findings are limited. Originality/value CBE has not previously been studied from an organizational learning perspective.
... Over the last 40 years, these researchers have produced several hundred published studies that examine Transcendental Meditation, prolonged practice of which is said to lead to non-symbolic experiences (Badawi, Wallace, Orme-Johnson, & Rouzere, 1984;Farrow & Hebert, 1982;Travis & Wallace, 1997). Several reviews of this work covering some of its major themes are available (e.g., Alexander, Rainforth, & Gelderloos, 1991;Alexander, Robinson, & Rainforth, 1994;Anderson, Liu, & Kryscio, 2008;Calderon et al., 1999;Hawkins, 2003). ...
Thesis
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Non-symbolic experiences have been reported for millennia and generally attributed to spiritual and religious contexts, although atheists and agnostics also report them. Popular terms for them include: nondual awareness, enlightenment, mystical experiences , peak experiences, transcendental experience , the peace that passeth understanding, unity consciousness, union with God, and so forth. Most are temporary, but some individuals report a persistent form of them. Some scholars have argued that these experiences represent advanced stages of human development and placed them atop existing levels in various domains of developmental psychology such as cognitive or ego development. There is little evidence for this view. Moreover, several problems with it are pointed out in the present work. The primary goal of this study is to test the above taxonomy by comparing ego development and Mysticism Scale measurements from a diverse population of individuals who report persistent non-symbolic experience. This investigation first hypothesized that individuals who report persistent non-symbolic experience would exhibit a range of psychological developmental levels, specifically tested here as a composite, ego development, using the Washington University Sentence Completion Test (WUSCT). Second, it hypothesized that individuals who report persistent non-symbolic experience would score higher on Hood's Mysticism Scale than those who do not report such experiences. Third, it hypothesized the absence of a simple or linear relationship between scores on the WUSCT and Mysticism Scale for those who report non-symbolic experience. These hypotheses were examined in 36 adults (F=9, M=27) reporting persistent non-symbolic experience. The first hypothesis was supported: ego development stages ranged from 5 (Loevinger and Cook-Greuter's "Self Aware" stage) to 10 (Cook-Greuter's "Unitive" stage). The second hypothesis was also supported: average and median Mysticism Scale scores notably exceeded those reported in studies of other populations. The third hypothesis could not be adequately tested because the Mysticism Scale score distribution was strongly skewed upwards, making most statistical comparisons unworkable. Overall, this study provides the first strong evidence that persistent non-symbolic experience does not represent higher levels of ego development.
... [44] The expansion of self-awareness during TM practice is also reflected in greater growth in self-development [45] and self-esteem. [46] The current study was not designed to separate independent effects of Maharishi Yoga Asana practice and TM practice on happiness during the day. However, it is important to recognize that the control group was also part of a college curriculum that includes daily TM practice. ...
Article
Context/background: Many studies showed positive effects of Yoga Asanas. There is no study on Maharishi Yoga Asanas yet. This research replicated and expanded observed improvements on the profile of mood states (POMS) as a result of 2-week Maharishi Yoga Asanas course. Thirteen college students taking part in a 4-week course on Maharishi Yoga Asanas were matched with 13 students taking other courses at the university. Aims and objective: The main objective of the study was to assess the effects of Maharishi Yoga Asanas on mood states, degree of happiness, and experiences in Transcendental Meditation (TM) practice. Methods: All students were given two psychological tests and additional question before and after their 4-week course: POMS, Meditation Depth Questionnaire, and question about the degree of happiness. Results: Repeated measure MANOVA showed the 4-week Maharishi Yoga Asanas course resulted in significant increase in happiness during the day and significant improvements in (1) sense of personal self, (2) transpersonal qualities, and (3) transpersonal self during their TM practice. Conclusion: This research shows that Maharishi Yoga Asanas affect more than body and mind. Rather they influence much deeper levels of one's subjectivity including one's transpersonal self.
... • increased self-actualization (Nidich, Seeman, & Dreskin, 1973;Alexander, Rainforth, & Gelderloos, 1991); • increased intelligence among college students (Cranson, Orme-Johnson, Gackenbach, Dillbeck, Jones, & Alexander, 1991;Jones, 1989;Aron, Orme-Johnson, & Brubaker, 1981;Dillbeck, Assimakis, Raimondi, Orme-Johnson, & Rowe, 1986) as well as among primary and secondary students (Nidich & Nidich, 1990, p. 94;Shecter, 1978;Warner, 1986); • improved memory, learning, and cognitive flexibility (Dillbeck, 1982;Miskiman, 1973;Alexander, Langer, Newman, Chandler, & Davies, 1989); • increased field independence (Dillbeck, Assimakis, Raimondi, Orme-Johnson, & Rowe, 1986;Pelletier, 1974); • increased efficiency of information transfer in the brain (Wandhofer, Kobal, & Plattig, 1976;Kobal, Wandhofer, & Plattig, 1975); and • increased creativity (Travis, 1979;Dillbeck, Landrith, & Orme-Johnson, 1981;Orme-Johnson, 1982). This growth of mental potential produces more precise, effective thinking, which improves a wide range of variables important to mathematics education. ...
Article
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Context: Many children have low self-confidence in mathematics, leading to math anxiety, disturbed cognitive skills, and reduction of the quality of their educational experience. Aims: This study aimed to compare methods of reducing such anxiety and improving cognitive skills using pranayama; and second, introducing pattern recognition in problem solving, using methods of Vedic Mathematics. These methods were chosen because pranayamas are well-established, standardized means of anxiety reduction for any stressful condition, offering a precise standard for comparison, while, Vedic Mathematics shortens and facilitates calculations. Settings and Design: The study design was a randomized controlled trial with three groups: Yoga pranayama (YP), Vedic Mathematics (VM), and controls (CG) taking 12th grade students from a private preuniversity college in India. Method: Intervention was 15 days each of 30 min daily instruction in either selected YP or VM for the two experimental groups. All the three groups received conventional math training every day. Exclusion criteria were major psychological problems. Assessments used the Mathematics Anxiety Rating Scale Revised and Children's Cognitive Assessment Questionnaire. Statistical Analysis Used: SPSS 19.0 was used for statistical analysis. Results: The experimental groups improved on all subscales of both tests, p < 0.001: the VM group improving more on the first test and the pranayama group performing better on the second test. Controls showed no improvements. Conclusion: Introducing pranayama and VM methods as teaching aids would improve cognitive skills and reduce math anxiety and offer a means to improve examination results, as later demonstrated.
... Decreasing reliance on externals for self-definition, increasing interiority, and spirituality corresponds to self-transcendence ( Beaumont, 2009, Frankl, 1966). Selftranscendence has proved to impact self-actualization in terms of the full development of the individual self ( Alexander et al. 1991). A leader senses the effects of his decisions and actions as well as balances his cognitive and affective aspects (attentional control) in order to assist others to self-actualize. ...
Article
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The current hierarchical structure of human cognition proposed is indicative of the multi - factorial and multi - layered construct of giftedness and intelligence. All individuals are intellectually endowed, but giftedness is perceived as an achievement in academic and practical intelligence as well as in the manipulation of wisdom-related skills and attitudes, taking into account nonintellective personal characteristics and contextual, sociocultural variables. Therefore, any attempt to measure intelligence should include multiple and diverse assessments comprising various psychological processes taking place in a specific time and place. Metacognitive processes are at the top of the hierarchy of cognition as their significance for one’s quality of life and social progress is immense and their existence signals for a successful person. Moreover, metacognition requires handling for a confluence of knowledge, feelings and skills in a balanced way; this is the point where individuals need to pay special attention in order to be both personally and socially successful as well as psychologically healthy.
... We therefore expanded upon these important studies by evaluating the immediate and long-term efficacy of an MBI app (the VGZ Mindfulness Coach) in a waiting-list controlled randomized trial, with mindfulness as a primary outcome variable and without any form of therapeutic guidance in addition to the selfhelp app. Secondary outcome measures assessed the impact of the app on quality of life, general psychiatric symptomatology, and self-actualization, a common nonclinical outcome variable in many meditation studies (Alexander et al. 1991). We expected that participants who received the VGZ Mindfulness Coach would demonstrate greater improvements on all these outcomes than participants in the WLC condition. ...
Article
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Although several hundreds of apps are available that (cl)aim to promote mindfulness, only a few methodologically sound studies have evaluated the efficacy of these apps. This randomized waiting-list controlled trial therefore tested the hypothesis that one such app (the VGZ Mindfulness Coach) can achieve immediate and long-term improvements of mindfulness, quality of life, general psychiatric symptoms, and self-actualization. One hundred ninety-one experimental participants received the VGZ Mindfulness Coach, which offers 40 mindfulness exercises and background information about mindfulness without any form of therapeutic guidance. Compared to 186 control participants, they reported large (Cohen’s d = 0.77) and statistically significant increases of mindfulness after 8 weeks and small-to-medium increases of the Observing, Describing, Acting with awareness, Nonjudging, and Nonreactivity mindfulness facets as measured with the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (Cohen’s d = 0.66, 0.26, 0.49, 0.34, and 0.43, respectively). Also, there were large decreases of general psychiatric symptoms (GHQ-12; Cohen’s d = −0.68) and moderate increases of psychological, social, and environmental quality of life (WHOQOL-BREF; Cohen’s d = 0.38, 0.38, and 0.36, respectively). Except for social quality of life, these gains were maintained for at least 3 months. We conclude that it is possible to achieve durable positive effects on mindfulness, general psychiatric symptoms, and several aspects of quality of life at low costs with smartphone apps for mindfulness such as the VGZ Mindfulness Coach. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12671-017-0761-7) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
... Moreover, one of the central experiential aspects of Maharishi Vedic Science-Maharishi's Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi programme-has been thoroughly documented and researched over the last 50 years (e.g., Dillbeck 2011). Furthermore, this programme has been examined in light of most of the modern disciplines, for example empirically in health and healthcare utilisation (e.g., Herron 2005), physiology (e.g., Wallace 1970), and sociology (Davies and Alexander 2005), and more conceptually in art and art education (Beaufort 2011;Fergusson and Bonshek 2015), psychology and psychiatry (e.g., Alexander et al. 1991), management and economics (e.g., Schmidt-Wilk et al. 1997), education and learning (e.g., Fergusson and Bonshek 2013;Grant and Jones 1997), mathematics (Gorini 1997) and computer science (Guthrie 1997). The significance of the theory and application of Maharishi Vedic Science has also been defined and explained in detail elsewhere (e.g., Chandler 2011; Dillbeck and Dillbeck 1997;Nader 1993Nader , 2012. ...
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The Jain tradition of ecological awareness and sustainability has been well documented over the last 25 years, although its roots lie deep in Indian history, specifically in texts such as the Tattvārtha Sūtra and Ācārāṇga Sūtra. This traditional body of knowledge includes a long-standing theory and practice of personal, social and environmental sustainability, addressing such views as the interconnectedness of humans and the laws of nature, the interdependence of everything in the universe, the responsibility of humans to conserve and preserve natural resources, the avoidance of wanton and unnecessary waste generation, and a general aversion to mistreating or abusing the environment. These views encapsulate the lifestyles of some ten million people, including both mendicants and laity. Similarly, Maharishi Vedic Science, the systematic exploration and practical application of the Veda and Vedic Literature as taught by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, makes a compelling case for establishing the unity of human life with nature and for promoting actions which guarantee both the protection of nature and protection by it. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between the principles of sustainability in Jainism and the corresponding viewpoint of Maharishi Vedic Science, including supporting scientific evidence of its application, and to posit their contribution to a sustainable world future.
... Yet, a point reached in meditation states is the experience of 'timelessness' as often reported by highly experienced meditators (Alexander, Rainforth and Gelderloos, 1991;Ataria, Dor-Ziderman and Berkovich-Ohana, 2015;Austin, 1998;Berkovich-Ohana et al., 2013;Hebert and Lehmann, 1977), when a loss of the sense of time goes hand in hand with a loss of a sense of self (Wittmann, 2015). For experienced meditators, a meditation induction with a focus on the present moment leads to the transient disappearance of the narrative self with its past and future component. ...
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One of the biggest challenges for researchers investigating altered states of consciousness (ASCs) has been the need for a systematic framework to accurately describe the phenomenological characteristics of ASCs, as well as placing them in relation to regular states of consciousness. Here, we target these two challenges by employing a new and systematic model of consciousness, the consciousness state space (CSS), and presenting a typology of ASCs within the CSS model. Specifically, the CSS model describes two different levels of self, narrative and minimal, as concentric spheres along three dimensions — subjective time, awareness, and emotion — and creates a phenomenological state-space encompassing all possible states, with its proposed neural space. We describe several ASCs focusing on dreaming, hallucinogenic effects of drugs, and meditation, in order to demonstrate and draw several conclusions. Here we focus on two related alterations during ASCs pertaining to perception of time and the bodily self: (i) ASCs share a common ‘collapse’ of the time dimension towards a transitory state of ‘timelessness’; (ii) during extreme ASCs, body sensations are ‘cut-off’ or at least distorted.
... Transcendental meditation involves transcending all thoughts by systematically going beyond mental activities in order to experience pure awareness, considered to be a peaceful state of consciousness. A meta-analysis of 18 studies indicated that transcendental meditation promoted self-actualization up to three times more than other meditation and relaxation practices, suggesting that there is something unique about the systematic cultivation of transcendence (Alexander, Rainforth, & Gelderloos, 1991). ...
Chapter
Cognition is one avenue through which faith has the potential to bring about thriving. We begin this chapter by considering the cognitive nature of faith beliefs. Then, we consider how faith can influence the general nature of a person’s thinking. Specifically, we review empirical research on the role of faith in the grand task of developing a sense of meaning in life. Next, we examine the implications of specific faith-based cognitive appraisals, including the role of faith in sanctifying aspects of life, coping with stressors, and forming appraisals of other people. Finally, we examine the outcomes of cognitive faith practices, including prayer and meditation. We end by considering the implications of this body of research to the field of psychology and the practice of psychotherapy and offer suggestions for future research.
... Specific program to develop self-awareness too are very limited and not yet standardized extensively. However, therapy sessions (Christopher, & Maris, 2010) and introduction of practices like mindfulness meditation (Langer, 1989;, transdental meditation (Alexander, Rainforth & Gelderloos, 1991), self-reflection (Burnard, 2008;Kanthan & Senger, 2011) and journal writing (Hiemstra, 2001) are frequently being used as the methods of selfawareness. The present research proposes that self-awareness can be enhanced and intensified by systematic introduction of activities which were extensively discussed in eastern philosophy like different kind of meditation or Asanas or Swadhyaya (reading of material related to self-knowledge). ...
Conference Paper
Quest for knowing self is most basic of human nature, which is long believed to be necessary for promoting good health and well-being. This research provides a theoretical and empirical examination of the role of self-awareness (SA) in health and well-being. It was proposed that self-awareness is a positivistic construct which would promote health and well-being. In order to achieve the above stated purpose, two series of study were planned. The first study aimed to find out the contribution of SA on various dimensions of health and well-being. A total of 300 college study equally drawn from both the gender participated in the study. Self-awareness scale (developed by the researcher), health scale for college students (adapted for the present study) and WHO spirituality form were given to sample. Study I showed that self-awareness came out as a strong predictor of various facets of health and well-being. These findings also proposed that increased self-awareness can change the status of health and well-being. For the study II a total of 60 participants were recruited in the experimental-control group study. Half of the students were assigned in experimental group and another half made the control group. Selection procedure was kept very specific keeping the understanding and acceptability of the program content for the participants. A specifically designed Self-awareness Intervention Program (SAIP) was held for five days for the participants in a controlled setting. The results showed substantial increment on health and well-being of the treatment group in compare to control group. A small follow up interview was also conducted to understand the findings of pre-posttest experimental control group design. A major implication of the present study is that SA can be used as positivistic construct and that an intervention program can be taken as low cost strategy to promote health and well-being of college students.
... EEG studies were conducted to identify the neuroelectrical correlates of related experiences such as union with God (Beauregard & Paquette, 2008; Josipovic, 2010; Travis, 2001 ) and specific neural correlates of meditations (Davis & Vago, 2013). Some studies revealed meditators' selfreports claim a significantly more positive relationship between their selves and God (Nystul & Garde, 1977 ) and the link between selftranscendental experiences and self-actualization (Alexander, Rainforth & Gelderloos, 1991). Other studies have investigated the effect of meditation on the perception of the self (Bercovich-Ohana & Glicksohn, 2014; Shapiro, 1983). ...
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Introduction: Transpersonal self and related concepts have been studied using various forms of meditation. However, there is a paucity of research examining the effect of dynamic meditation on the realization of the transpersonal self. Objectives: The present study was aimed at studying the effect of dynamic meditation on the realization of the transpersonal self. Method: The total sample of the study comprised 60 subjects, 30 each in experimental and control groups. Subjects in the experimental group received 21 days training in dynamic meditation. Transpersonal experiences were measured before and after dynamic meditation training in both groups with the help of a semi-structured interview schedule. Results: Obtained data were analyzed with the help of Chi square and themes were identified qualitatively. In the post test, 73% subjects in the experimental , and none in the control group reported transpersonal experiences. The following six themes of the transpersonal self were identified: experience of being detached from physical body, experience of illuminating blissful and eternally calm self, experience of bliss and calmness which don't have a cause, experience of guardians or higher self in relation to physical and mental existence, perceiving the experience as indescribable , perceiving the experience as transformational. Conclusions: Dynamic meditation was effective in realizing the transpersonal self.
... It does not require changes in personal beliefs, lifestyle, or philosophy and hence has higher acceptance worldwide. 5 Diverse studies from the western countries have reasoned that the TM technique may help treat high blood pressure, chronic pain, insomnia, and many other physical ailments. Despite having origins from India, very few studies have been undertaken in the Indian population. ...
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Background: Transcendental meditation technique is purported to help treat high blood pressure, chronic pain, insomnia, and many other physical ailments. The present study was conducted to evaluate the impact of transcendental meditation on reaction time and cardiovascular parameters in young healthy volunteers.Methods: In this single centre, randomized, controlled study, 120 1st year M.B.B.S and OTPT students were recruited and put into two groups [control (60), experiment (60)]. Simple Auditory Reaction Time (ART) and Visual Reaction Time (VRT), along with Heart Rate (HR) and Blood Pressure (BP), of all subjects were recorded and compared. The experimental group participated in 16 weeks of TM programme and performed TM twice in a day, for 20 minutes, sitting comfortably with eyes closed and chanting OM. Control group were only made to sit with eyes closed during the same time. Keeping all the variables constant, all the parameters were measured again after 16 weeks.Results: There was significant reduction in all parameters (ART, VRT, HR, systolic BP and diastolic BP) in experimental group after 16 weeks of TM as compared to control group. ART was significantly shorter than VRT in both experimental and control groups and this difference was maintained after the intervention also.Conclusions: Transcendental meditation is an effective technique for reducing cardiovascular risk and can be prescribed to pre-hypertensive and hypertensive patients for stress reduction, along with medications for better results.
... In times of uncertainty and chaos in life, spiritual well-being provides significant inner strength to people. It is associated with improved problem-solving ability, increased creativity, innovation, self-esteem, autonomy and independence, increased ability to deal with abstract and complex situations, decreased anxiety and increased self-actualization (Alexander et al., 1991). Spiritual intelligence is also correlated with improved work performance, improved relations with co-workers and P a g e | 104 ...
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The current study was an endeavour to explore the differences in spiritual intelligence of male and female managers in private sectors with respect to genders. The random sample of this study comprised of 200 managers working in private and public sector organisations. Both groups includean equal number of managers i.e. 100 male and 100 females. The sample was studied by using Spiritual Intelligence Test (Dhar & Dhar, 2010). The independent sample t-test revealed insignificant gender differences in spiritual intelligence of managers. Spiritual intelligence is getting more attention in the workplace. Spirituality at work does not connect to any specific religious rituals or traditions, but rather is based on their own personal values and philosophy (Cavanagh, 1999). Researchers argue that it is a basic foundation of the effective use of rational and emotional intelligence as well. In today's global scenario the pressure to survive in competitive work impose additional pressure and stress on the managers. It may result in an unhealthy environment In the workplace. Hence, to create a healthy environment at the workplace we should address spiritual intelligence. Twentieth-century begins with the importance of rational intelligence or intelligence quotient (IQ). In mid-1990s Daniel Goleman explored a new dimension of human intelligence named emotional intelligence (EQ). Now in 21 st-century spiritual intelligence gets special attention. Zohar and Marshall (2000) introduced the term spiritual intelligence (SI) and define as 'the intelligence with which we address and solve problems of meaning and value, the intelligence with which we place our actions and lives in a wider, richer, meaning-giving context, the intelligence with which we can assess that one course of action or one life-path is more meaningful than another'. They further stated that SI allows us to be creative, change the rules, alter situations; to dream, aspire, see the uses and limits of both understanding and compassion. Studies regarding spiritual intelligence revealed its significance inthe workplace. In times of uncertainty and chaos in life, spiritual well-being provides significant inner strength to people. It is associated with improved problem-solving ability, increased creativity, innovation, self-esteem, autonomy and independence, increased ability to deal with abstract and complex situations, decreased anxiety and increased self-actualization (Alexander et al., 1991). Spiritual intelligence is also correlated with improved work performance, improved relations with co-workers and
... It is suggested that this altered sensitivity to the passage of time is achieved through increased momentary awareness of sensory experiences, better emotion regulation, and heightened attentional resources (Hölzel et al., 2011). Being in a peak of the meditative state however leads experienced meditators to the transient disappearance of the self and time (Alexander et al., 1991;Berkovich-Ohana & Wittmann, 2017;Droit-Volet & Dambrun, 2019). Depending partly on the type of meditation, and also for novice meditators, time in retrospect feels comparatively shorter when attention is continuously focused on an object of meditation, rather than when monitoring self-related perceptions and emotions (Sedlmeier et al., 2020). ...
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In the meditative state time appears to slow down and in the present moment it expands. However, to date, there is no investigation of the effect of meditative state on the structure of the “psychological moment”; this is the measurable, minimal duration of the moment “now.” In this study, we examined the effect on the psychological moment of a mindfulness intervention against an intervention in which participants listened to classical music. The psychological moment was measured using a simultaneity-detection paradigm from which the threshold between reports that two targets changed luminance simultaneously or with an asynchrony is normally taken as the duration of the moment. In line with previous research, this paradigm allowed for examination of the effects of the subthreshold synchronized, or asynchronized target onsets, which occurred prior to the luminance change of the targets. While there was no overall difference in the psychological moment pre- and post-, and as a function of the type of intervention, a bias against reporting simultaneity following presentation of a subthreshold asynchrony, which lowered thresholds and so shortened the psychological moment, was reduced after the mindfulness intervention. From this we conclude that even brief mindfulness meditation can encourage a more focalized attentional response, which can in turn be used to normalize psychological time.
... There are over twenty types of meditation practice, such as loving-kindness, transcendental, compassionate and zazen meditation. As the name indicates, different types of practice have different focuses, for example, loving-kindness meditation focuses on cultivating authentic, warm-hearted positive emotions (Fredrickson et al., 2008) and transcendental meditation focuses on self-transcendence (Travis & Parim, 2017) and self-actualization (Alexander et al., 1991). ...
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Previous research has focused on evaluating structured mindfulness-based interventions and manualized treatment, with few studies examining the relationship between meditation home practice, spiritual experience, and mental health status. This research examines whether meditation home practice is associated with mental health status and whether spiritual enlightenment experience mediated this relationship. This study conducted a cross-sectional survey among 220 Chinese meditators and collected information on their meditation home practice, spiritual enlightenment, daily spiritual experience, and their mental health status including anxiety, depression, and stagnation (a traditional Chinese medicine mental health construct operationalized for clinical use by mental health professionals and researchers). Path analyses revealed that daily meditation home practice time and years of meditation home practice were negatively correlated with anxiety, depression, and stagnation. These relations were mediated by nonduality (a component of spiritual enlightenment). The study provided preliminary evidence that daily meditation home practice and nonduality experience might be significant protective factors for mental health. These findings may have implications for further discussion of the safety of meditation home practice.
... Cette dernière s'inscrit clairement dans le domaine de la spiritualité de par sa construction issue d'une pratique indienne (vedanta) et beaucoup de recherches montrent les effets positifs de la TM sur la santé [15]. Pare xemple, les travaux d'Orme-Johnson [16] montrent que la MC impacte positivement la santé physique et psychique et dans une méta-analyse comparant diverses méditations et protocoles de relaxation, les effets positifs sur la santé de la TM ont été démontrés [17]. De plus, alors que les instructeursTMdéclarent que la MT n'est pas une pratique religieuse, ils suggèrent que c'est la dimension spirituelle de la TM qui conduit à des résultats plus positifs que ceux cédésp ar des techniques de relaxation séculaires [18]. ...
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En France, depuis quelques décennies, la méditation est apparue comme un véritable phénomène. Devenue légitime par la science et enseignée par des médecins ou des coachs en développement, ces techniques d’Orient dont la plus populaire est la méditation de pleine conscience (MPC) sont aujourd’hui mieux connues. Développée dans le cadre de l’accompagnement de vécu psycho-affectif comme les rechutes dépressives ou encore le stress, cette pratique tend au développement de qualités de l’esprit telles que le non jugement, l’attention vigilante sur l’instant présent, la gestion des émotions. Cependant, en développant des programmes inspirés de la pleine conscience et en dénaturant l’objet de son cadre traditionnel, spirituel et religieux d’origine, n’a-t-on pas perdu le sens de cette pratique et n’est-ce pas un frein pour un engagement à long terme ? La question que nous nous posons est donc la suivante : une dynamique spirituelle dans laquelle le patient s’engagerait ne favoriserait-elle pas une immersion et une motivation à long terme à pratiquer des formes de méditation ? De plus, la perte de la compréhension du terme « méditation » dans un champ culturel, spirituel et religieux différent du cadre originel, ne créerait-elle pas un frein supplémentaire dans l’appréhension d’une pratique méditative?Ces questionnements et leurs développements, abordés tout au long de cet article, semblent aller dans le sens de certains auteurs qui tendent à considérer une seconde vague d’interventions basées sur la pleine conscience. Nous questionnons ainsi ce nécessaire rendu de la dimension spirituelle à la méditation afin de permettre l’engagement actif qu’exige cet entraînement mental et ainsi, permettre un engagement sur le long terme pour en tirer les bénéfices de soulagement face à la souffrance.
... Over time, individuals practicing the TM technique have lower anxiety levels (Eppley et al., 1989;Orme-Johnson & Barnes, 2013), lower stress reactivity (Orme-Johnson, 1973;Travis et al., 2009), lower incidents of stress related diseases such as hypertension and diabetes (Paul-Labrador et al., 2006;Schneider et al., 2005), lower medical usage (Herron & Cavanaugh, 2005;Orme-Johnson, 1987) and greater reduction in PTSD symptoms (Bandy et al., 2020;Brooks & Scarano, 1985;Nidich et al., 2018;Rees et al., 2013). In addition, one gains a new perspective of oneself and your place in the world as measured by greater openness to experience (Travis et al., 2004), higher levels of ego development (Chandler et al., 2005;Travis et al., 2004), growth of self-actualization (Alexander et al., 1991) and more frequent experiences of higher states of consciousness (Travis et al., 2004). ...
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In the 20th century, the understanding of matter was transformed from a world of classical objects to a world of probabilities that were excitations of non-material quantum fields. Psychology may be involved in a similar transformation. In the 20th century, psychological models included specific “classical” content such as memories, attention, or emotions. However, some thinkers model consciousness as more field-like. Chalmers asserts that consciousness is an irreducible part of matter, along with time and space. Goff maintains that consciousness permeates reality and is expressed in degrees in different structures. Tononi’s Integrated Information Theory posits that consciousness is a fundamental property of any physical system and the degree of consciousness expressed reflects the power of the present state to affect the probability of its past and future states. Nader’s model goes beyond these concepts and postulates that consciousness is a nonmaterial, non-physical reality that exists entirely by itself. It has an ontological existence and generates matter, governs the interaction between material structures and is responsible for individual subjective experiences. This model is supported by direct experience of the field of consciousness, called pure consciousness, during Transcendental Meditation practice. This allows empirical investigation of pure consciousness and of higher states of consciousness when pure consciousness is integrated with daily experiences.
Article
A paucity of data in school children generally, and in non-Western schools specifically, related to health, school performance, and practice of meditation necessitated this study. The fact that almost no prior research of this type has been conducted in Latin America makes the present investigation especially worthwhile. This mostly quantitative study was carried out with 91 randomly selected school children, ranging in age from 11 to 16 years, in a remote Peruvian town in the central Andean mountains called Huay-Huay. Using a 47-question, paper-and-pencil instrument to ask students about their experience with meditation in four categories (i.e., physical health, cognitive health, emotional health, and school performance), this observational study considered whether or not the practice of meditation had a self-reported impact on student personal health and academic life, and if so to what extent. Data indicate that a majority of children in Huay-Huay reported benefits across all measures, and these were apparently stronger when students practiced meditation more regularly. Qualitative reports support these conclusions. Gender and grade level did not appear to influence this outcome.
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Résumé Les recherches sur la méditation dans le champ des thérapies complémentaires et alternatives sont de plus en plus importantes. En effet, beaucoup de travaux soulignent les effets bénéfiques en termes de santé physique et psychique de la méditation. Dans le cadre des deux grandes orientations de techniques de méditation (concentration et pleine conscience), nous allons nous concentrer dans cette étude sur la méditation de concentration (méditation mantra et transcendantale). Après avoir encadré la notion à un niveau théorique, nous développerons une revue de la littérature (randomisés, comparaison avant/après) sur cette forme de pratique en ciblant précisément la méditation transcendante et de mantra ainsi que d’autres formes utilisant uniquement la concentration afin de mettre en lumière les effets thérapeutiques de cette approche sur la santé mentale et de souligner son efficacité. Cependant, nous resterons prudents quant à émettre des conclusions hâtives sur les effets bénéfiques systématiques de cette pratique en mettant en lumière l’importance des limites méthodologiques que l’on retrouve dans ces travaux depuis les quarante dernières années en proposant des pistes d’amélioration.
Article
Background: Transcendental meditation (TM) is a stress reduction technique that can potentially lower blood pressure (BP) safely. The American Heart Association recommends that TM may be considered in clinical practice. Objective: To provide an overview of all systematic reviews and meta-analyses of TM on BP for evidence-informed clinical decision making. Method: Systematic searches of PubMed, EBSCOhost, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, Embase, and PsycINFO for all systematic reviews and/or meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with TM as an intervention, and outcome measures include systolic BP (SBP) and diastolic BP (DBP). Qualitative and quantitative data were synthesized. The methodological quality of the selected reviews was assessed using the AMSTAR checklist. Results: Eight systematic reviews and meta-analyses are included. Among them is an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality report, a Cochrane systematic review, 4 independent reviews, and 2 reviews from a TM related institution. The quality of most of the included reviews is fair with a mean score of 5.75/11 on the AMSTAR scale. Overall, there exists a clear trend of increasing evidence over the years supporting the efficacy of TM in lowering BP. However, some conflicting findings remain across reviews and potential risk of bias exists in many of the RCTs included in these reviews. Conclusion: Practising TM may potentially reduce the SBP by ∼4mm Hg and DBP by ∼2mm Hg. Such effect is comparable with other lifestyle interventions such as weight-loss diet and exercise. Further evidence from long-term well-designed RCTs conducted by independent researchers is needed.
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Teacher burnout affects job performance and mental and physical health. This study evaluated the effects of a meditation-based wellness program on burnout, resilience, psychological distress, and fatigue. Seventy-eight participants, randomly assigned to the Transcendental Meditation program (n = 39) or to a wait-list control group (n = 39), were administered the Maslach Burnout Inventory, Resilience Scale, Perceived Stress Scale, and the National Institutes of Health Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System fatigue and depression scales at baseline and at four-month posttest. Intention-to-treat with all 78 participants was used for all analyses. Significant reduction on emotional exhaustion, the main scale of the Maslach Burnout Inventory, was found for the meditation group compared to controls (p = 0.019). Significant improvements were also found on resilience (p = 0.014), perceived stress (p < 0.001), fatigue (p = 0.001), and depression (p = 0.091). Eighty-seven percent were compliant with their meditation home practice. Findings indicate that meditation is effective in improving burnout and associated resilience, psychological distress, and fatigue factors. Teachers may benefit from in-school wellness programs.
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Consciousness-based education balances academic challenge with students' ability to master the material (1) using a block system to spread academic work across the semester, (2) teaching strategies to connect individual lectures to larger discipline principles, and (3) incorporating Transcendental Meditation practice into the curriculum. Brain integration and constructive thinking were compared in 27 freshman/senior pairs involved in consciousness-based university education. As seniors, these subjects had higher levels of brain integration, associated with emotional stability and success in life, and higher global constructive thinking, associated with work success and stable personal and social relationships. These variables typically do not change during college.
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DER VOLLSTÄNDIGE TEXT IST IN DEUTSCH NICHT MEHR VERFÜGBAR UND WIRD BALD ALS BUCH BEI ASANGER PUBLIZIERT - ABSTRACT - Der Text gibt einen kurzen Überblick über einige historische, traditionelle vedische bzw. buddhistische Hintergründe der Transzendentalen Meditation (TM) und der Achtsamkeitsmeditation (Anapanasati). Es wird ein breiter Überblick über die bisherige Forschung zu beiden Meditationsformen gegeben. Abschließend wird ein objektiver Vergleich der Effekte beider Techniken, sowohl kurz- (vor der Meditationspraxis versus danach) als auch langfristig (mit einem Abstand von einigen Monaten), anhand der Messung der Herzfrequenz-Variabilität (HRV) vorgestellt. Die HRV wurde bei jedem Probanden mehrmals gemessen, wiederum mit kurzfristigen Standard- (5 Minuten) und Langzeitmessungen (25 Minuten) während der Meditation. Ein weiterer Vergleich der beiden spezifischen meditationstypischen Ergebnisse mit verwandten HRV-Typologien aus anderen klinischen und persönlichkeitspsychologischen Messungen wurde hinzugefügt, um eine Art grobe, aber empirisch fundierte ungefähre charakteristische Typologie ("Persönlichkeit") für beide Meditationsformen zu erhalten.
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Alienation feeling among Meditators and and non-meditators
Article
This is the protocol for a review and there is no abstract. The objectives are as follows: To determine the effectiveness of TM for the primary prevention of CVD.
Preprint
- Publication as a book by Asanger Verlag in preparation - Abstract - The text reviews shortly some historical traditional vedic resp. buddhistic backgrounds of transcendental meditation (TM) and mindfulness meditation (anapanasati). A broad overview of previous research on both forms of meditation is given. Finally an objective comparison of the effects of both techniques, both short (before meditation practice versus afterwards) and long term (with an interval of some months), is presented using the measurement of heart-rate-variability (HRV). HRV was measured several times with each subject, again using short term standard (5 Minutes) and long term (25 Minutes) measurements during meditation. A further comparison of the two specific meditation-typical results with related HRV typologies from other clinical and personality psychological measurements was added to yield some sort of a rough but empirically founded approximate characteristic typology ("personality") for both meditation forms.
Article
Anxiety, depression and stress are exceedingly common in patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD). They increase the risk of cardiac events and are associated with much worse outcomes. A causal relationships exists between anxiety/depression and adverse cardiac events such as acute myocardial infarction and sudden cardiac death. Various treatments, including psychological therapies and pharmacotherapy, can used to treat patients with these disorders. This review discusses the epidemiology, pathogenesis and treatment options for patients with CVD who suffer from these conditions, and argues that they should be treated as concomitant risk factors for CVD.
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This chapter explores subjective and objective correlates of the state of Yoga during Transcendental Meditation practice. Yoga fits the three criteria of a higher state of consciousness: (1) Yoga has a different subject/object relationship than other states. In Yoga there is no content—only self-awareness. (2) Yoga involves a more expanded sense-of-self. Content analysis of descriptions of Yoga yielded three themes: the absence of time, absence of space and absence of body sense. Yoga is the most universal aspect of the individual. (3) Yoga is defined by distinct physiological patterns. Slowing of breath, autonomic orienting and frontal alpha1 brain coherence are reported during the state of Yoga. The integration of Yoga with waking, sleeping and dreaming also fits the criteria for being a higher state of consciousness, called Cosmic Consciousness in the Vedic tradition. The chapter ends with the conclusion that growth of higher states of consciousness is the most important result of experiencing the state of Yoga. Then, life is lived in freedom.
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The next generation of business leaders aspires to integrate financial success with social and environmental responsibility. A fundamental enabler of more enlightened business practice is a change of consciousness toward the compassion, comprehension, and courage needed to conduct business in a way that leads to sustainability and thriving. This chapter presents the system of Consciousness-Based Education (CBE), which incorporates the Transcendental Meditation program. CBE as practiced at Maharishi University of Management is an innovative approach of management education which integrates experiential, intellectual, pedagogical, and environmental features all aimed at developing students toward enlightened consciousness. Empirical evidence on the effects of this educational approach includes cognitive, moral, and emotional development and brain integration. This growth of consciousness gives rise to responsible business leadership to create shared value that integrates the interests of shareholders and stakeholders.
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In this chapter I would like to highlight four levels at which research evidence has shown benefits brought by meditation: brain physiology, clinical, personality and society. Most of the benefits discussed here are applicable to meditation techniques in general, although benefits specific to Dhammakaya meditation are also mentioned where available.
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In the Gītā, Arjuna’s fully developed mind knows it is his duty to fight for the side of righteousness; but his fully developed heart feels deep love for his enemies, his very own kinsmen. Arjuna turns to Kṛṣṇa to guide him how to act ethically in this most extreme experience of the duality of heart and mind. Kṛṣṇa instructs Arjuna to transcend, leave the field of relativity, and experience the Absolute Self—“Be without the three Guṇas, O Arjuna, freed from duality”. Kṛṣṇa then gives the formula for effective and virtuous action—“Established in Yoga, perform actions”—be awake in the Absolute Self while engaging in action. These key verses from the Gītā convey the timeless wisdom that gaining enlightenment, higher states of consciousness, provides a foundation for ethical performance by leaders. When fulfillment in the Self is firmly established, the leader is naturally independent of possessions, and balanced in gain in loss. Such an enlightened leader acts for the welfare of the world, without personal attachment.
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The term meditation can be used in many different ways, according to the technique to which it refers. Transcendental Meditation (MT) is one of these techniques. TM could serve as a model for research on spiritual meditation, unlike the meditation techniques based on secular knowledge. The purpose of the present study is to conduct a bibliographic review to organize scientific evidence on the effects of TM on neurophysiology, neurochemistry, and cognitive and behavioral aspects of its practitioners. To conduct this critical narrative review of the literature, we searched for scientific papers on the PubMed database of the National Center for Biotechnology Information. The keywords used in the search were Transcendental Meditation, Neuroscience of meditation e Meditation and behavior. We selected 21 papers that analyzed different aspects that could be altered through meditation practice. We concluded that TM has positive and significant documentable neurochemical, neurophysiological, and cognitive-behavioral effects. Among the main effects are the reduction of anxiety and stress (due to the reduction of cortisol and norepinephrine levels), increase of the feeling of pleasure and well-being (due to the increase of the synthesis and release of dopamine and serotonin), and influence on memory recall and possible consolidation. Further studies are needed using creative and innovative methodological designs that analyze different neural circuitry and verify the clinical impact on practitioners.
Article
Transcendental Meditation (TM) is effective in alleviating stress and anxiety and promoting well-being. While the underlying biological mechanisms of TM are not yet fully explored, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis represents an index providing important clues embodying the stress system cascade. In this pilot study, young adults were randomly assigned to TM training followed by eight weeks of meditation practice or a wait-list control condition. TM was conducted over eight weeks. Thirty-four young adult participants were randomized; 27 participants completed the HPA outcome assessments (41% male). To assess HPA axis functioning, salivary samples to assess cortisol awakening response (CAR) that were collected in the morning, both at baseline and at week-4. Salivary cortisol in the context of a social stressor using the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST) was collected at week-8. The results indicate that participants who were randomly assigned to TM had lower awakening salivary cortisol levels and a greater drop in CAR from baseline to week-4 than the control group. There were no significant differences in HPA axis functioning in the context of the TSST. Primary limitations of this randomized controlled trial were the small sample size, the use of a wait-list as opposed to an active control, and the limited scope of HPA axis assessments. The results of this pilot study provide tentative evidence that TM may impact biological stress system functioning and suggests that this may be a worthwhile avenue to continue to examine. It will also be useful to extend these findings to a broader array of meditative and mindful practices, particularly for those who are experiencing more distress.
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Dargestellt werden die Möglichkeiten der Arbeit mit dem autogenen Training nach I. H. Schultz, einem physiologisch und tiefenpsychologisch fundierten Verfahren, das eine eigene Form der Psychotherapie darstellt. Hypnose wird in der Medizin als Ergänzung zu traditionellen Therapien (Unterstützung der Abwehr, Aktivierung der eigenen Ressourcen) und zur Bewältigung von Angst sowie zur Kontrolle/Bekämpfung von Schmerzen eingesetzt. Biofeedback ist eine apparative Methode zur Erlangung und Verbesserung der Selbstkontrolle über Vorgänge im Körper. Signale von Körperfunktionen werden erfasst und in Echtzeit rückgemeldet. Meditation ist ein Sammelbegriff für sehr unterschiedliche geistige Techniken und Übungen. Grundlegende Meditationsprinzipien sind konzentrative Aufmerksamkeitstechniken, Kontemplations- und Achtsamkeitsübungen und automatisches Selbsttranszendieren. In der Psychoneuroimmunologie wird untersucht, wie wechselseitige psychoneuroimmunologische Verbindungswege genutzt werden können, um die Gesundheit positiv zu beeinflussen.
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This study aimed to examine the influence of transcendental meditation (TM) practice on baseline EEG brainwave patterns and to examine weather TM reduces state and trait anxiety. EEG recordings were conducted on volunteer participants (N=12) before and after a three-month-meditation training. Endlers Multidimensional Anxiety Scales (EMAS) were used to assess their anxiety levels. Final data analysis included N=9 participants. Power (μV²) and coherence levels were compared in the alpha, beta, theta and delta frequency band. Results confirm the influence of TM on some EEG brainwave patterns. Changes were found mostly in the theta band. An interaction effect was found on the left hemisphere. Theta power decreased on the left hemisphere, but not on the right. Increased theta coherence was found overall and in the central, temporal and occipital areas. Decrease in alpha power was found on channels T3, O1 and O2. An interaction effect was found in the delta frequency band, too. A trend for power decreasing was found on the left hemisphere, and a trend for power increasing on the right. After meditation, power decreased on channel O1. In the beta frequency band a decrease was found on channel O2. Overall results suggest that the left hemisphere is more sensitive to meditation practice. Most of the changes were found in the occipital and temporal areas, less in the central and frontal areas. Trait anxiety did not differ after the TM practice but a decrease in state anxiety and cognitive worry was found.
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Die notwendige Effizienzsteigerung in modernen westlichen Gesundheitssystemen, sowohl im medizinisch-therapeutischen als auch im ökonomischen Bereich, erfordert ganzheitliche medizinische Konzepte, speziell auf dem Gebiet der Prävention und der Behandlung chronischer Erkrankungen. Die vedische Medizin in ihrer ursprünglichen Form als Teil der vedischen Wissenschaft beinhaltet das ganzheitliche theoretische und praktische Wissen über die grundlegenden Gesetzmäßigkeiten und Prozesse zur Aufrechterhaltung und Wiederherstellung von Gesundheit. So wie das Erbgut auf materieller Ebene den Speicher der Informationen über die Funktionsabläufe in den Zellen des Organismus darstellt, ist der Veda die Informationszentrale des gesamten Universums auf der transzendenten Ebene des Bewusstseins.
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