Proponents of the Transcendental Meditation program initiated by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi have expressed their ideas in various web sites on the World Wide Web, through pages such as The Transcendental Meditation Program at http://www.tm.org and the Scientific Research on Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi program of the Maharishi University of Management at http://www.miu.edu/TM_Research. In these sites positive messages are conveyed about the benefits of meditation to its practitioner within the physiological, psychological, sociological, intellectual, and interpersonal realms. Within these sites, the web-browser is presented with an abundance of information relating the vast array of health benefits offered to an individual through the regular practice of what is described as the simplest, most natural form of awareness--what practitioners of the technique term "transcendental consciousness." Through this technique, its advocates assert, one can:
*improve memory, creativity, and intelligence;
*increase energy, happiness, self-esteem, and inner sense of calm;
*reduce anxiety, insomnia, hostility, and depression;
*cultivate a younger "biological" age;
*improve overall health and relationships;
* and even decrease the misuse and abuse of chemical substances such as
alcohol, cigarettes, and nonprescription drugs.
Underlying each of these claims is the theme of the unification of body and mind into a state of consciousness which greatly facilitates clarity and order in one's awareness. Through the deep periods of rest achieved during levels of transcendental consciousness, t...
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...regularity with which subjects practiced TM and the subsequent decrease in their consumption of alcohol.
Although much research in the area of transcendental meditation and its purported benefits remain to be performed, numerous data exist which support the contention that transcendental meditation is effective as a preventive and therapeutic method of treatment for the abuse of alcohol and other substances. Considering its numerous psychological effects as well as its rewarding health benefits, TM may be an appealing alternative to those whose previous treatment outcomes were unsuccessful or unsatisfying. In light of the poor success rates obtained by the majority of alcohol abuse prevention and treatment programs, a technique which fosters self-efficacy, stability, and a sense of empowerment may be just what is needed by alcohol abusers.
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