By Joseph Weber
The Indian non secular entrepreneur Maharishi Mahesh Yogi took the West via hurricane within the Nineteen Sixties and ’70s, captivating child Boomers bored to death with struggle 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.
Although Fairfield’s longtime citizens have been relieved to determine that their new friends have been clean-cut and respectably dressed—not the wild-haired, drug-using hippies that they had feared—the newbies however quick started to remake town. shops promoting unique items popped up, TM fans outfitted odd-looking houses that modeled the guru’s ideas for peace-inspiring structure, and the recent collage knocked down a ancient chapel, at the same time it erected vast golden-domed constructions for meditators. a few newbies bought elected—and others have been defeated—when they ran for neighborhood and statewide places of work. every now and then, hundreds of thousands from around the globe visited the small town.
Yet Transcendental Meditation didn't regularly in achieving its goals of non-public and social tranquility. Suicides and a homicide unsettled the meditating neighborhood through the years, and a few fans have been fleeced by way of con males from their very own ranks. a few battled an area farmer over land use and each other over doctrine. significantly, the realm has now not gotten extra peaceful.
Today the guru is useless. His fans are graying, and few in their young ones are stepping into management roles. The move turns out rudderless, its monetary muscle withering, regardless of the efforts of high-profile supporters comparable 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? via having a look heavily on the transformation of this small Iowa city, writer Joseph Weber assesses the movement’s strangely powerful impression on Western tradition, sketches out its ordinary previous, and explores its attainable future.
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Additional info for 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) by Joseph Weber