Méditation Transcendantale : Ce que disent les religueux

Catholicisme

Père Leonard Dubi
1er Décembre 2008

je suis un prêtre catholique en activité agé de 66 ans de l'archidiocèse de Chicago qui a officié dans 7 paroisses différentes au cours de ma carière longue de plus de 40 ans. J'ai commencé à pratiquer la Méditation Transcendantale (MT) quand j'avais 30 ans pendant ma troisième affectation en tant que prêtre assistant. j'ai ensuite continué à exercer ma fonction dans deux paroisses supplémentaires comme prêtre assistant jusqu'à ce que l'archiprêtre m'ai ordonné prêtre d'une paroisse pour laquelle j'ai exercé pendant 21 ans. Je suis dans ma nouvelle affectation en tant que prêtre et ce depuis 3 ans maintenant.

La pratique de la MT a toujours été l'une des mes plus grandes priorités dans ma vie depuis que j'ai commencé il y a maintenant 33 ans. Pendant tout ce temps j'ai pratiqué cette technique assiduement, deux fois par jours, y compris pendants mes jours de congés laïques et religieux. J'ai médité dans des avions, des bateaux, des bus et des cars; dans des aéroports, des stations de bus, des chapelles d'hôpitaux, des salles de spectacles, et chez des amis de même que dans ma chaise de prière favorite dans ma chambre.

Mon temps d'activité a été tissé dans la fabrique de ma vie spirituelle. Mes prières et mes préparations aux célébrations des sacrements de la lithrugie catholique, et particulièrement la sainte Eucharitie, ont été magnifiées par la pratique de la technique de MT.

L'expérience intérieure quotidienne en tant que pratiquant de la MT a approfondie mon appréciation des dimensions contemplatives de la prière mentale enseignée dans la tradition spirituelle catolique. Je suis une personne plus calme et plus centrée sur moi-même, et mes lectures de prières des écritures saintes sont plus profondes et couronnées de succès. Des significations plus profondes émergent au fur et à mesure que je lis les différents passages des livres de la sainte bible.

Ma vie de prière est devenue plus riche. La vie intérieure s'est ralentie même quand la vie extérieure s'est accélérée. J'ai l'air plus jeune et je me sens plus jeune que mon âge.

Le problème associé au statut de prêtre dans une église catholique au 21e siècle en milieu urbain dans le "midwest" des Etats Unis d'Amérique, de même que la vie dans le monde moderne des communications instantannées est potentiellement dégradante. La pratique régulière de la MT a prouvé son efficacité dans la dissolution du stress et c'est une manière sans effort pour me calmer. Ces bienfaits sont validés par de nombreuses recherches scientifiques effectuées sur la technique de MT.

La meilleure “étude,” cependant, a été ma propre expérience personnelle. J'ai conseillé à des amies et des paroissiens d'apprendre la technique de MT. Certains l'ont fait. Ceux qui ont continué à pratiquer la technique régulièrement ont obtenus les mêmes résultats que moi.

Je recommande ardemment la Méditation Transcendantale à tout le monde, particulièrement pour les personnes dans la société qui sont responsables des la croissance spirituelle et intellectuelle des congrégations et également les étudiants. J'ai utilisé la MT comme un outil qui m'a aidé dans ma vocation de prêtre et comme homme de foi et de prière. La technique m'a tout simplement aidé dans mon expérience du fondement spirituel, ma croyance religieuse à un niveau plus profond.

Fr. Leonard Dubi
est un prêtre de l'Archidiocèse de Chicago

Père Cletus Stein
2, October 2008

Chers amis catholiques,

Je suis un prêtre catholique à la retraite qui pratique la méditation transcendantale (MT) depuis mon service dans l'église catholique, c'est à dire depuis environ 30 ans. De par ma propre expérience, je sais que la MT est une technique universelle qui est en harmonie ave les objectifs de notre religion. Elle ne demande aucun changement dans notre style de vie ou nos croyances et elle constitue une aide efficace pour nous permettre de devenir plus fort dans notre foi. La Méditation Transcendantale a amélioré ma propre pratique religieuse et a été une grande voie pour me relaxer et devenir plus alerte et conscient dans mon travail et dans ma vie toute entière.

J'ai officié dans plusieurs paroisses au Kansas pendant 20 ans et au Texas pendant 11 ans, j'ai également officié en tant qu'aumonier dans les hopitaux et pour les étudiants. J'ai effectué mes études théologiques à Rome et j'ai été ordonné prêtre en 1966. C'est mon expérience que la MT est un moyen excellent pour se préparer à la prière. J'ai aussi constaté que les professeurs de MT et les pratiquants ont un grand respect pour toutes les religions; par conséquent, je crois que la MT nous amène à pratiquer l'oecuménisme et non pas seulement en parler.

La méditation a été encouragée par l'Eglise à travers les ages et par les saints, y compris par l'auteur d : "nuage de l'inconnu", Sainte thérèse d'Avila, , Saint Jean de la Croix, et bien d'autres. La MT est une technique éprouvée pour se joindre à eux dans la meditation. De nombreuses recherches scientifiques à travers toutes ces années ont montré des résultats significatifs de la MT; Elle améliore la santé physique et accroit la clarté mentale et la créativité. C'est mon expérience également que la pratique de la MT et les bienfaits qu'elle apporte s'améliorent d'année en année. Je crois que tout le monde peut trouver une grande valeur dans la pratique régulière de cette méditation.

Père Cletus Stein
est un prêtre catholique à la retraite

Soeur Carol Wirtz
25 août 2008

à qui de droit :

C'est une lettre de soutien à la pratique de la Méditation Transcendantale. Je suis soeur catholique depuis 22 ans et je pratique la méditation transcendantale depuis 14 ans. Je trouve que cette technique m'apporte beaucoup de bienfaits dans tous les domaines de la vie. Elle m'a aidé à me calmer et me concentrer pendant des périodes de stress et également dans la vie quotidienne. J'ai également noté des effets physiologiques tels que une diminution de la tension musculaire, une respiration plus facile et plus généralement une plus grande conscience des choses. De plus, il existe de nombreuses études scientifiques pour confirmer les bienfaits de la Méditation Transcendantale.

Since Transcendental Meditation is not a religion nor is it taught as a doctrine, it does not interfere or conflict with my Catholic Christian faith. In my years of practicing this technique I believe it has enhanced my prayer and Christian life.

Sister Carol Wirtz lives in Anthony, New Mexico

Judaism 

Senior Rabbi Allan Green
June 27, 2008

à qui de droit :

The first thing I want to say about my thirty-seven year practice of the Transcendental Meditation program is that I never would have become a rabbi without it. Transcendental Meditation saved my Jewish life.

How so? The short story is that in addition to its many other benefits, verified by over 600 scientific studies, the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique gave me an experiential referent for the word, “God.” Based on my own developing experiences with TM, I grew in love and appreciation for God, for His amazing universe, and for my own religious traditions. At the same time, I would emphasize that TM is truly universal, as anyone of any age, education, or background can practice it successfully, without any need for change in personal beliefs or lifestyle.

With the regular practice of TM, people not only become more calm, energetic, and creative than before, but they also change in ways they couldn't possibly have anticipated—innocently growing in love, compassion, ethical sensitivity, and devotion to God. All too often in religious life, these ideals prevail far more in theory than in practice. But the TM program gently, effectively transforms these ideals into living realities.

Therefore, I would recommend the practice of Transcendental Meditation to any student or teacher of Judaism (or indeed, of any religious tradition) interested in living the highest ideals of their tradition in everyday life. In the words of the rabbis, “May we then find grace and enlightenment, in the eyes of both God and humankind."

Allan Green
is Senior Rabbi at Shaarey Haarey Zedek Synagogue in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Rabbi Michael Shevack
November 12, 2008

To whom it may concern:

As a rabbi, I would like to comment on my experience of the technique of Transcendental Meditation (TM) in relationship to the practice of my religion of Judaism.

There is a common misconception amongst many different “western” religions, mainly Judaism, Christianity and Islam that Transcendental Meditation is a form of some kind of Hindu worship and is therefore pagan. Based on my direct experience with the TM technique, I can clearly say that this idea is a misunderstanding and is simply not true.

In fact, my experience as a TM practitioner, since the age of 17 (I am now 55) has proven just the opposite. At first I was attracted to TM as a way to reduce stress, and was very excited by the hundreds of studies that demonstrated it having a positive effect on lowering stress, blood pressure and improving generally well-being, both mental and physical. However, as I practiced TM, I found that these benefits were actually mere “by products” of the experience.

I found that I was opening, day after day, meditation after meditation, to what I considered to be a deep spiritual experience. Such an experience was not “other worldly", nor did it belong to “another religion". Such an experience was deeply rooted in the practical day to day experiences of life, and as such, became deeply integrated with the practice of my day to day Judaism. I found that TM opened me up to intuitive insights and understandings which helped “make sense” of my Jewish practice; it made the observance of my own faith increasingly alive and spiritually vibrant.

Many decades ago, I had come across a quote by Maharishi which said, “As you spontaneously meditate you begin to understand the religion of your birth.” This has proven to be the truth. The more I meditated, the more the customs, the traditions, the theology and the practice of my religion deepened within me. TM did not remove me from Judaism; it actually guided me back to Judaism, with improved understanding, deepened spiritual experience, and greater love and commitment.

I have therefore recommended TM to many Jews within my congregation and beyond my congregation, as well as to all seekers-of-Truth, including many within Christianity and Islam. Based on my experience, I can say that there is nothing to fear about TM. If you are Christian it will make you more Christian. If you are Jewish, it will make you more Jewish. If you are Muslim, it will make you more Muslim. Due to the growing appreciation of one's own faith through TM, one does not seek out other religions; one becomes fulfilled in one's own.

Lastly, as a leader in inter-religious dialogue, who has worked with many of the world's noble religions, I believe that TM can provide a doorway to a common spiritual understanding and experience that can help bring about, and speed about, the development of mutual respect and understanding of the world's religions, by deepening and enlivening the universal spiritual foundation upon which they are all based.

In short, it is a fast, effective, universal approach to peace.

Michael Shevack is rabbi with The Bucks County Free Synagogue
in Point Pleasant, Pennsylvania

United Methodist Church

Reverend Jonathan Chadwick
November 4, 2008

Dear friends,

I would like to take a brief moment to address the issue of the teaching of the Transcendental Meditation Technique (TM) in the public schools.

Many years ago I learned TM while in high school and during that time I had opportunity to attend several weekend TM residence courses led by Dr. John Hagelin, who is currently the National Leader of the TM Movement in the U.S. Also, I was fortunate to spend my sophomore year of college in residence at Maharishi International University in Fairfield, Iowa. After graduating from Boston University and seminary, I then served for twelve years as full-time pastor in charge of various United Methodist churches throughout Iowa.

The relationship between meditation and religion is an interesting and complex question. During my years in parish ministry my exploration of this question was detailed and included dialogue on this topic with Bishop Rueben P. Job, who ordained me twice. Overall, I have come to the conclusion that the practice of TM really does not conflict with any religion; at least, whatever perceived “rubbing points” there might be in the opinion of some, are greatly outweighed by the benefits of TM, many of which have been documented by years of scientific research.

Please note that I do not make this claim lightly. For more than three decades I have asked tough questions on these matters to TM officials, and their responses were quite satisfactory. Also, in recent years, I have made it a point to communicate in some depth with a number of prominent critics of TM. As far as I am concerned, TM resoundingly passes the test.

Perhaps the best watchword on these considerations is “diversity.” My own alma mater, Boston University School of Theology, has produced graduates as diverse as Norman Vincent Peale and Martin Luther King, Jr. So it is in their spirit of prophetic positivity that I would encourage you to check out TM both for yourself and your public school. Personally I can't imagine continuing to grow without it.

Reverend Jonathan Chadwick
has served as Pastor of several United Methodist churches throughout Iowa

Unity Church 

Reverend Don Lansky
June 30, 2008

To Whom It May Concern:

When I first learned the Transcendental Meditation technique in 1970 I was an avowed agnostic. Over my years of practicing the TM technique, I found myself growing into a greater awareness of something much larger than myself.

Particularly on the TM retreats I attended, this awareness continued to blossom into a deep appreciation and gratitude for the Creator — and a profound and abiding love of Jesus Christ. At no point have I ever found a conflict with TM and my religious beliefs and practices. In fact, the TM program has not only served to strengthen my faith in God, it has also deepened my prayer life as well.

When I first learned TM in 1970, there was only one scientific study conducted by the Harvard Medical School. Today, TM is the most widely researched technique of meditation in the world with over 600 scientific studies validating its benefits for improving health and overall well being.

On a more practical level, I cannot imagine doing ministry without my daily, twice-a-day TM practice. The deep rest and silence of the TM technique helps me to find balance, energy, and the spiritual connection to cope with the rigorous demands and stresses of ministry. In short, I am a better minister because of the TM program.

With my direct experience of the TM technique for over 38 years and the growing body of scientific research, I can whole-heartedly recommend the TM program. I especially would recommend the TM technique to my brothers and sisters in the clergy, whatever their denomination or faith tradition.

Reverend Don Lansky
is Co-Minister of the Unity Church in Charlottesville, Virginia

Mormonism

Mormon, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
High Priest Marc Stephens
March 19, 2009

To Mormons and all people of faith, I grew up in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. At the age of fifteen, I temporarily left because I had questions that were not answered, and I was told to just have faith. I was unsatisfied. After I had been practicing Transcendental Meditation (TM) for years and with personal advice from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, I returned to the Mormon Church at the age of thirty-two. With the regular practice of TM, I experienced spiritual growth that gave me a new appreciation of the Gospel and the scriptures. I remember reading the Doctrine and Covenants, Section 88: 6-13, and I exclaimed to my wife, “My gosh, do they know what they have?” The founder of the Mormon Church, Joseph Smith, said, “The mind or the intelligence which man possesses is co-equal with God himself.” TM provides the direct experience of our inner divine nature, light and truth, the field of pure intelligence. This state of pure intelligence or consciousness is what some contemporary brain research scientists have called the Fourth State of Consciousness. It is called a fourth state because it is distinct from the common waking, dreaming, and sleeping states of consciousness in terms of brain wave measurements and many other physiological measures. In the last 38 years, hundreds of scientific studies have documented the health benefits, increased creativity, intelligence, and harmonious relationships that result from the experience of this field of unbounded pure Being, the pure intelligence within each of us. President Hinckley said continually, “The essence of Divinity is within us,” (October, 1993 General Conference) and he has encouraged every member of our faith to “Rise to the divinity within [us]” (October, 2002 General Conference). An essential component of the Gospel is the principle of seeking further light and knowledge. Brigham Young explained that “It is our duty and calling, to gather up all the truths in the world... and bring it to Zion.” Further, he said, “All knowledge and wisdom and every good that the heart of man can desire is within the circuit and circle of the faith we have embraced.” It is important to emphasize that the practice of TM does not require any change in one’s religious beliefs or practices; it simply enables one to directly experience the eternal non-changing reality and fully live and appreciate your religion. As President Lee stated in 1973 after investigating TM, “I believe that if the members of the Church practiced TM, they would be able to live their religion.” The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints end with this statement: “If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.” Consider carefully this statement by President David O. Mckay who emphasized the meaning of true religion at the General Conference of the Priesthood Session in April of 1967: “It has been said that “consciousness of God is the highest achievement in human experience and is the supreme goal of human life. This is true religion. It is a mental, spiritual experience of the highest order.” TM is simply a tool to provide the direct experience of “the consciousness of God,” that pure field of intelligence, the divinity within, to perceive and comprehend greater light and truth, to grow in consciousness and understanding and realize your full potential, the fullness of life.

Sincerely,

Marc Stephens, Member, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints High Priest of the Melchizedek Priesthood Salt Lake City, Utah

Islam

March 25, 2009

To all interested in self-development,

I am a veiled Muslim that practices Transcendental Meditation (TM) and I cannot ever forget the first time I prayed after my first meditation. I learned the TM technique in December of 2006: I was speechless and cannot explain this state of complete serenity, contentment and gratitude for God. TM increased my level of acceptance and appreciation for my faith and strengthened my beliefs.

For example, reading from the Qur’an is becoming more enjoyable and comforting at the same time, as now I can better link its teachings with everything around me: my level of comprehension of its meanings are increasing on a daily basis. It is clear to me that the more I practice TM and the TM­Sidhi programs, (the TM-Sidhi program is a set of advanced techniques based upon TM), the more deeply I realize different aspects of my religion and my mission in life.

Throughout my life I’ve been asking my self lots of questions about creation and the purpose of life but now my humble insights were confirmed, as I’ve always had a strong belief that everything is happening for a reason. I have found that it is easier to have faith in how life unfolds through God’s wisdom if I am feeling more secure and at peace within my self. Even if I may not fully understand, on an intellectual level, what is happening, my growing inner peace allows me to feel more at ease with handling any situations that life puts in my path.

It is clear to me that my daily practice of TM and the advanced TM-Sidhi programs have opened my eyes and heart to greater knowledge and experience. Because of this expansion of heart and mind I’ve discovered that I spontaneously act in a more positive and uplifting way to others, with more love, forgiveness and compassion, which is exactly what my religion and beliefs are all about. I’m enjoying feeling more in harmony with God’s creation and desiring to help society in every way I can.

With meditation I feel unlimited within myself and after I practice it, I feel more flexible, more alert, and have a greater ability to concentrate on my work and can think more clearly and creatively. Also, when I perform my religious practices the whole experience becomes deeper and more spiritual.

Finally, I would say that even though TM and the TM-Sidhi programs are not a religion and do not require any change in one’s personal beliefs or cultural practices, they very well complement religion because they help to eliminate mental, emotional and physical stresses and tensions. From my own experience I can say that the dissolving of stresses and tensions purifies and strengthens the body, heart and mind and results in a greater ability to live one’s life in harmony with the highest goals of religious life.

Warm Regards,
 
Miral Shaaban
Cairo, Egypt