Transcendental Meditation in America: How a New Age Movement Remade a Small Town in Iowa (Iowa and the Midwest Experience)

Transcendental Meditation in America: How a New Age Movement Remade a Small Town in Iowa (Iowa and the Midwest Experience)


The Indian religious entrepreneur Maharishi Mahesh Yogi took the West by means of hurricane within the Sixties and ’70s, fascinating child Boomers uninterested with warfare and social upheaval together with his message of meditation and peace. Heeding his name, thousand fans moved to tiny Fairfield, Iowa, to establish their very own collage at the campus of a failed denominational collage. quickly, they all started a college for prekindergarten via highschool, permitting fans to immerse themselves in Transcendental Meditation from toddlerhood via PhDs.

even if Fairfield’s longtime citizens have been relieved to determine that their new pals have been clean-cut and respectably dressed—not the wild-haired, drug-using hippies that they had feared—the beginners however quick started to remake the city. shops promoting unique items popped up, TM fans equipped odd-looking houses that modeled the guru’s ideas for peace-inspiring structure, and the recent college knocked down a historical chapel, whilst it erected sizeable golden-domed structures for meditators. a few beginners received elected—and others have been defeated—when they ran for neighborhood and statewide places of work. every now and then, millions from around the globe visited the small town.

but Transcendental Meditation didn't constantly in attaining its goals of private and social tranquility. Suicides and a homicide unsettled the meditating neighborhood through the years, and a few fans have been fleeced by means of con males from their very own ranks. a few battled an area farmer over land use and each other over doctrine. particularly, the area has now not gotten extra peaceful.

this day the guru is lifeless. His fans are graying, and few in their childrens are stepping into management roles. The circulate turns out rudderless, its monetary muscle withering, regardless of the efforts of high-profile supporters corresponding to filmmaker David Lynch and media rich person Oprah Winfrey. Can TM reinvent itself? And what is going to be the way forward for Fairfield itself? through taking a look heavily on the transformation of this small Iowa city, writer Joseph Weber assesses the movement’s unusually powerful impression on Western tradition, sketches out its ordinary prior, and explores its attainable future.

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