This archival interview from 1973 with TM Founder Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was broadcast on NBC’s Speaking Freely, with celebrated newscaster, journalist, and author Edwin Newman. By the time of this interview, Maharishi had been teaching the Transcendental Meditation program worldwide since 1959, completing 13 world tours, visiting 50 countries, with hundreds of thousands learning the TM technique.
Excerpts from this seminal interview cover a range of topics, including
- Maharishi’s background;
- how the TM technique differs from other meditations;
- whether the technique is a passing fad;
- what transcending is;
- what Cosmic Consciousness is;
- and whether people experience this state of consciousness other than through TM practice.
Newman is known for his 23-year career in television news. He was the long-time anchor of the popular Today show and appeared regularly on NBC’s award-winning program, Meet the Press. He also conducted more than 250 hour-long interviews on Speaking Freely with leading figures of the day, between 1967 and 1976.
By 1973, Maharishi was world-renowned. His book the Science of Being and Art of Living was published in 1964, translated into 15 languages, and sold millions of copies. In 1967 Penguin published his Bhagavad-Gita: A New Translation and Commentary. Many scholars regard his interpretation of chapters 1–6 of the Indian text as one of the most influential in shaping spiritual thought and life.
In 1968 Maharishi began training thousands of teachers of the TM technique in order to make the program more widely available. He would train more than 40,000 TM teachers, who went on to establish TM Centers around the world and teach the technique to more than 10 million people.
From 1970 to 1973, some 10,000 people attended Maharishi’s symposia on the Science of Creative Intelligence, his modern interpretation of Vedic knowledge. During these university conferences, Maharishi spoke with the leading thinkers of the time, such as Hans Selye, Marshall McLuhan, and Jonas Salk.
By the time of this interview, Maharishi had been teaching the Transcendental Meditation program worldwide since 1959, completing 13 world tours, visiting 50 countries, with hundreds of thousands learning the TM technique.
The interview excerpts are interspersed with lively discussion and Q&A with Bob Roth, CEO of the David Lynch Foundation (DLF), and Mario Orsatti, Executive Director of the Center for Health and Wellness, a division of DLF. This TM Talk was broadcast on June 21, 2020.
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