My mother is a big, big Beatles fan. One morning, out of curiosity, I asked her what her favourite Beatles album is, and her response was quick: “The White Album—hands down.”
After endless repeats in full blast on our beat-up stereo of “The White Album” every Sunday mornings, I found myself singing to songs I’ve memorised by heart, and me being a music geek, I decided to check out the story behind “The White Album”. Further Googling and Wiki-ing led me to the information that The Beatles wrote the album while practising transcendental meditation under the renowned Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. So the greatest album of The Beatles was written while being on a spiritual journey through meditation? Sounds interesting.
Relaxed Awareness: What is Transcendental Meditation?
Thus began my quest on learning more about transcendental meditation. Transcendental meditation taps into the mind’s ability to avoid distracting thoughts to promote a state of “relaxed awareness”. Similar to the NeuroActivator program, it allows the mind, breath, and body to come into one—resulting into a state of pure consciousness, stability, as well as a still and calm mind.
Mediators who practise transcendental meditation are more inclined to become less agitated, think clearly, and become more at peace with their surroundings. Transcendental meditation allows its practitioners to achieve a state of relaxation much deeper than sleep. It brings altogether a different experience, so to speak—as the mind and body become one.
It is a well-known fact that transcendental meditation’s popularity notably increased after The Beatles released “The White Album”, and as a result, more and more schools began to teach the technique to thousands of practitioners. There are a lot to learn as well as to experience; however, experiencing transcendence can be done in the comforts of your own home by using basic techniques.
Begin transcendental meditation by sitting in a comfortable position, with your eyes closed. Then, the quest for total relaxation begins. Breathe in, and breathe out. As thoughts begin to enter your mind, view it as a simple truth—no expectations, no judgments. This will allow your mind to achieve full awareness. The absence of thoughts may sometimes occur—and if this happens, simply be aware of the stillness of your body. Reciting a mantra then follows. Begin by reciting the word “Om”(a word that symbolises birth, life, and death) repeatedly, making sure that you pronounce it in a very long and drawn out manner. For about 10 to 15 minutes, your body and mind will reach a meditative state.
When you are ready, end the meditation process by rubbing your hands and massaging your face, before finally bringing your hands back to your knees and gently opening your eyes.
If you want to learn more transcendental meditation techniques, let this article show you more.
The mind can be easily distracted by outside forces which can alter focus and concentration, thus leading to stress, anxiety, and worry. However, transcendental meditation can help alleviate the mind and body’s overall state by flushing out thoughts and by focusing on awareness and relaxation.
“Across the Universe”, a song written by John Lennon, features a mantra that goes, “jai guru deva om”. It was Lennon’s way of paying homage to the late Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. I can only imagine what went on while The Beatles was practising transcendental meditation, but if it resulted to one of the greatest albums of all time in rock history, then surely it must be an experience beyond anything ordinary—an experience, to which I can say, is nothing but transcendent.
I hope you had fun reading as much as I did while writing this and listening to “The White Album”.