“No man is an island” … the poet John Donne beautifully gave expression to the intuitive notion that all of humankind is connected at a deep level, and that we as individuals are part of a greater reality in terms of how we may affect each other.

Our common universal connection is now scientifically established as far as quantum physics is concerned with the formulation of Unified Field theory in recent decades. Millions of times more fundamental and more powerful than the nuclear force, the Unified Field is the ultimate source of the order displayed throughout the vast universe, but for most scientists it remains on the level of theory as they are without a practical method of exploring and experiencing such a non-material realm.

In the Vedic tradition however the existence of this infinite field of creative intelligence underlying all of creation has been known for thousands of years, in fact the word “Veda” refers to this ultimate reality and the ancient Vedic civilisation was based on living in harmony with it. Along with the understanding of the Unified Field, the ancient Vedic rishis also developed ‘technologies” to maintain higher levels of individual and collective consciousness and live life in accord with natural law.

While much of India had remnants of this knowledge, it took one exceptional Vedic scholar, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, to restore these technologies of consciousness to their original state of purity and effectiveness. In the late 1950’s, Maharishi took the principal technique, which he called Transcendental Meditation, and toured the world teaching it and setting up an administrative organisation now known as the Global Country of World Peace.

The Maharishi Effect

In the mid-1970’s with the growth of popularity of Transcendental Meditation, (or TM as it became known), an extraordinary phenomenon became apparent in cities where at least 1% of the population had learned it … namely a drop in the annual rate of crime, sickness and accidents, in contrast to similar cities.

Named the Maharishi Effect by research scientists, this phenomenon was subject to intense scientific analysis and found to be valid. During TM the individual mind settles to the level of the Unified Field and so creates a powerful ripple of harmony at that level. When a sufficient number of people are regularly engaged in this practice, a threshold is crossed and the effect on the entire community becomes apparent with the fore- mentioned improvement in social behaviour.

Just as watering the root of a tree improves all parts of the tree - its leaves, flowers, branches, fruits - so this technology in enlivening the unified field of natural law, nourishes and enlivens life everywhere for the peace and prosperity of everyone.

Inspired by these developments, Maharishi declared an impending “Age of Enlightenment’ in a tour of five continents at the beginning of 1975 and immediately set about the development of an even more powerful methodolgy… the TM-Sidhi programme, including Yogic Flying.

In subsequent years it was found that the Maharishi Effect could be achieved by a group made up of just the square root of one percent of a given population. “Group” means all in the same place at the same time and in the case of say New Zealand, the effect could be produced by a group of just two or three hundred ‘Sidhas”, expert practitioners of the TM-Sidhi programme.

The Present

The reduction of social violence, terrorism, and war through group practice of Maharishi’s Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi programmes is the most extensively researched and thoroughly established phenomenon in the history of the social sciences. Over the past thirty years or so there have been many occasions where big groups of yogic flyers have been assembled for set periods in trouble spots of the world with beneficial results, but the logistical problems of keeping them together for a long period have been immense. Apart from having large enough groups in individual countries, the goal of the Global Country of World Peace is now to establish a permanent group of sufficient size ( about 9,000) somewhere on the planet to ensure that World Peace is never threatened at any time in the future.

Maharishi passed away in 2008 but he had set in motion a plan to establish such a group, made up of Vedic Pandits, on an auspicious site located in the geographic centre, or Brahmasthan, of India. These Pandits have the additional expertise of being able to perform Yagyas to enhance the effect of their group practice of the TM-Sidhi programme.

The entire Global Capital of World Peace where these 9,000 Vedic Pandits will live has been master-planned according to the principles of Vedic architecture, Sthapatya Veda, At this site, 1,700 acres have been acquired and the basic infrastructure of roads, utilities, water, and communications has been built. A campus of 200 buildings to accommodate the first 2,000 Vedic Pandits is finished, where 1,500 Vedic Pandits are already in- residence, practicing the peace-creating technologies of consciousness.

Construction has begun on two more campuses for an additional 6,000 Vedic Pandits. These campuses are composed of residences, meditation and Yagya halls, assembly halls, dining facilities, kitchens, administrative buildings, gardens and a dairy.

A programme of training Vedic Pandits around India, starting at age 10, is being supported at local day-training centres and at several residential academies for the older students. This programme will ensure that the Vedic Pandits will be available as the funding and housing become ready. Needless to say, dedicated fund-raising activities are underway and availability of funding is the only restricting factor to the growth of this project.

The organising body, the Brahmananda Saraswati Foundation, is a trust governed by a 48-member council of educators, scientists and businessmen, and it estimates that to complete the construction of the buildings in the Brahmasthan $US59 million is needed. This is in addition to the $US27 million that has already been spent.

As well, a Reserve Fund is needed, the interest from which will provide perpetual support for the 9,000 Vedic Pandits. The Reserve Fund will also support a Pandit training programme throughout India so that young students are constantly being trained to offset any attrition from the main group. Approximately $US50,000 will endow a Vedic Pandit, and almost as much again is needed to fund the Pandit training programme. To permanently endow this group of 9,000 Vedic Pandits and the training programme a Reserve Fund of $890 million is required.

To the average person, you and me, these are huge sums … but just a tiny portion of what many nations in the world spend each year on armaments, or ‘technologies of death’ in the vain hope of protecting themselves. We are thankfully entering a new era of international relations where due to these Vedic peace-creating groups, warfare will eventually become obselete and confined to the history books.

When the required peace-creating group size is attained in any country, that country is said to become ‘invincible’, and when every nation becomes invincible, then the whole family of nations becomes a collection of coherent, integrated countries, each respecting the sovereignty of the other.

New Zealand Situation

Since 1970, over 40,000 people or 1% of the population of New Zealand has learned Transcendental Meditation, but it has to be assumed that over that lengthy period a number of those have passed on or left the country etc. Interestingly enough, however, this country has all the same experienced some of the characteristics of the Maharishi Effect in recent years in terms of a reducing rate of crime and accidents.

All the same there is a strong resolve among the local TM instructors that this country should have its own peace-creating group made up of either Kiwi Sidhas, or a group of imported Vedic Pandits, as has been successfully arranged in the USA.

As far as facilities go, the TM movement here now has an attractive academy building at 295 Wainui Road in the Silverdale countryside just north of Auckland. This building, constructed in accordance with Vedic architecture, could temporarily house the group practice of a peace-creating group, but an adjacent accommodation building has only ten rooms so additional housing facilities would have to be arranged.

The longer-term plan is to construct what is termed a Maharishi Tower of Invincibility, a seven storey building which has at its base a school where all students and staff are practicing the TM-Sidhi programme together as the first and last activity of each school day. Their worthy efforts could be supplemented by a Vedic Pandit group and other levels of the building would be dedicated to the dissemination of the other branches of Vedic knowledge revived and presented in their original pure form by Maharishi. Input from the NZ public, especially the Indian community, on how to achieve these goals is warmly welcomed.

Back to the original notion that ‘no man is an island’ … we are talking about an incoming tide of positivity and harmony that is irresistible and all will enjoy living in a better world. If you would like to find out more about what is happening, here are a couple of contacts:

Website of the Global Peace initiative in India - www.vedicpandits.org
Website of the TM organisation in New Zealand- www.tm.org,nz

Journalist Stephen Benner is a qualified TM instructor based in Tauranga.
Email: blissbiz@wave.co.nz and website: www.blissbusiness.co.nz