The experience of pure consciousness, a quiet, inner experience, which develops mental alertness and increases creativity and intelligence, is core to the system of Consciousness-Based Education. The method we use to have this peaceful, silent experience, is Transcendental Meditation, brought to the world by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. This is practiced twice per day for 20 minutes at a basic level, and up to 1-hour at an advanced level. We simply would not see the high-pass rates we see through our partner institutions without this methodology.
Transcendental meditation is an easy, natural, and enjoyable mental procedure which allows the mind and body to settle down to a state of deep rest, also called restful alertness. This deep inner rest, and the simultaneous development of many neuronal pathways in the brain, has a number of extensively researched and scientifically-validated benefits for academic outcomes and for the physical and mental health of students, including:
• An increase in pass-rates by 25% [study conducted in South Africa on 9 000 learners in Alexandra, Soweto, and Daveyton vs.12 000 learners in control group, on over 100 000 school marks using Department of Education results. Findings with the control group in the study showed pass-rates for that group decrease by 1% over the 3-year trial-period]
• An increase in IQ of 9 points after 4 years [Journal Personality and Individual Differences 12(1991): 1105-1116]
• Three times as effective in increasing self-actualization, an overall measure of positive mental health and personal development. Meta-analysis of 42 independent research results. Journal of Social Behavior and Personality 1991 6:189-247
• Increased intelligence and improved self-concept among children from low income families. Journal of Social Behavior and Personality 2005 17:65-91
• A 50% reduction in ADHD [Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - 'attention deficit syndrome'] symptoms, stress and anxiety [Current Issues in Education [On-line], 10(2)
• A 48% reduction in depression [31st Annual Meeting of the Society of Behavioral Medicine]
• A 51% to 89% reduction in tobacco, alcohol, and non-prescribed drugs usage shown in a systematic review and meta-analysis of 198 studies showing marked, sustained, and highly significant reductions in smoking, alcohol consumption, and illicit drug use, Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly 1994 11:13-87 and the International Journal of the Addictions 1991 26:293-325
• Significant improvements in speed of cognitive processing, cognitive flexibility, creativity, general intelligence, practical intelligence, and field independence: Intelligence Journal 2001 29:419-440 255. The authors note that, as in earlier research on TM and intelligence, the technique produced unexpected improvements in basic cognitive abilities that do not usually develop beyond early adolescence. Repeated similar findings appear in: Behaviour: Journal of Psychology 1975 3:167-182 258, and the Journal of Personality and Individual Differences 1991 12:1105-1116 263, and in Perceptual and Motor Skills Journal 1986 62:731-738
• A reduction of 52% in hypertension and reduced high-blood pressure among at-risk college students [American Journal of Hypertension, December 2009]
• A 47% reduction in heart attacks and strokes [American Heart Association, November 2009]
• A 29% reduction in diabetes indicators Annual Meeting of the American Public Health Association
• 50% lower hospital admissions and outpatient consultations from a major study conducted over five years drawing on data of 600 000 individuals: Psychosomatic Medicine 1987 49:493-507, including
60-70% lower for medical and surgical conditions.
87% lower for heart and blood vessel disorders
87% lower for neurological problems.
• Reduced medical expenditure by 59% in an eleven-year study showing 80% fewer hospital admissions and 55% fewer out-patient visits to the doctor. American Journal of Managed Care 1997 3:135-144
Over 600 research studies have been conducted on the Transcendental Meditation program has been conducted in 200 independent universities and research institutions and published in over 160 reputable scientific journals and edited books.
Meditation used to be viewed in the mainstream as some kind of mystical phenomenon practised by wise sages, and gurus. But it seems meditation has gone through something of a renaissance and is now viewed as a perfectly credible practice by a number of scientific institutions and tens of thousands of trained medical doctors around the world. Research continually finds that Transcendental Meditation can keep us healthy; lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety and stress – and particularly increase academic outcomes, including pass-marks, class-averages, and speed of learning.