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Leisure and Culture

Discover transcendental meditation

Written by Christine

We’ve all heard of transcendental meditation, the practice made famous and endorsed by big-name celebrities like The Beatles, Jennifer Aniston, and Oprah. But what is it exactly and why do so many people swear by it as a way of life? Transcendental meditation, or TM, is a meditation that is used by thousands of people all over the world as a way to relax, work on self-development, or to open up the mind. No matter what your goal is TM can bring about many positive changes to your life.

What is it?

MeditationTM was introduced by the guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi to India in the 1950s. He developed the technique originally as a spiritual and religious practice with roots in Hinduism but today it is practiced by both religious and secular people alike. TM gained momentum throughout the 60’s and 70’s and then started to spread throughout the world. Over time, the practice of TM has become an important tool for many people to help reduce stress and relax. To begin TM you must start a course with a certified instructor and pass through a 7-step program in which your teacher will guide you through the process. You can find a program near you on the TM program’s official website; costs vary from country to country but you can expect a course for adults to be about 200 euros with a certified teacher. In Barcelona, you can get started at the Centro de Meditación Transcendental Barcelona. You can consult their website for official training sessions and events. In addition, there is a free chat every Wednesday on Carrer Orense to learn more information about the TM program and ask any questions that you may have. Once you’ve passed through the course and training you’re ready to start practicing.


Young Woman Meditating on the Floor --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Practitioners of transcendental meditation usually meditate 15-20 minutes, twice a day. You must begin in a comfortable position sitting on the floor, with eyes closed, in an environment that is quiet, peaceful, and free from distractions. During these sessions, the practitioner needs to focus on their mantra, a secret that is given to you by your teacher during the 7-step course. A mantra is a sound or a word in Sanskrit that is repeated over and over in the mind during the practice of meditation. Focusing on the mantra helps the mind to relax and forget about everything else as you fall into a relaxed state. The goal during TM is to replace normal thinking with stream and state of pure consciousness and being. It is said that in the beginning it may be hard to focus on the mantra and nothing else for extended periods of time but that with practice a meditation session can pass by in the blink of an eye.  For more tips, you can check out this YouTube station!

The benefits

BuddhaThere are various benefits to transcendental meditation. Many people begin meditating with the aim of lowering stress and many studies have proven this to be one of the many positive results of a regular meditation practice. In turn, when you are less stressed then your blood pressure may be lowered and you may get a better night’s rest and sleep more peacefully throughout the night. Many people who practice TM begin to make healthier choices like quitting smoking or drinking less frequently to keep the mind more clear and focused. They may also take up yoga to help keep the body strong and fit also. Most importantly, it is impossible to have a meditation practice and not be more relaxed. TM can help you to achieve a clear mind, healthy body, and an overall sense of balance. Namaste.

About the author


Christine is a traveler, teacher, writer, and beach-lover, exploring Barcelona one tapa at a time!

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