Happiness is the purpose of life
Whatever we do, at work or in our personal lives, is ultimately driven by happiness. Happiness is the purpose of life - life is to be enjoyed.
It's easy to assume that happiness depends on what's happening in your life, but actually it's how you feel deep down inside that counts every time.
"Ninety per cent of your long-term happiness is predicted not by the external world, but by the way your brain processes the world." – Shawn Achor, Psychologist - expert on the connection between happiness and success.
Relationships above all are a reflection of your own happiness - or lack of it. We may blame others or we may try our hardest to be the person we would like to be, but our demeanour and behaviour is inevitably the expression of how we feel inside.
Age-old or modern, these sayings express the same truth: it's what's inside that drives everything.
Scientists have shown that happiness and self-worth are fundamental to our health and longevity too. And happiness is the antidote to dependency.
Add meditation to your daily routine
When you add the calming experience of Transcendental Meditation (TM) to your daily routine, your life becomes infused with a happiness that is independent of circumstance. It's the innate joy of life that drives everything – more fundamental than any stresses or traumas, any disappointments or unhappiness you might have picked up on your way through life. It's subtle, but powerful. And during Transcendental Meditation, the mind goes to that inner source of happiness automatically, because it is the very nature of the mind to move there.
True happiness, measured in the brain
Even though happiness is a subjective experience, it's possible to objectively measure related hormone changes in the brain. Serotonin is our "happiness hormone", and it is depleted by chronic stress.
A study at the Institute for Neurochemistry in Vienna measured the concentration of serotonin metabolite 5-HIAA, before and after the practice of Transcendental Meditation. They found a 50% increase.
A deeper form of rest
Transcendental Meditation allows the nervous system to access a special quality of rest that is uniquely different from ordinary rest and relaxation - and in some ways deeper than sleep. This rest has been called a fourth state of consciousness – complementary to the waking, dreaming and sleep states. It has been glimpsed, most often fleetingly, by rare individuals down the ages and in every culture. It is the essence of wisdom, insight and self-realisation - enlightenment.
It could be called "transcendental consciousness" because it is beyond everything: beyond the senses, beyond thinking and understanding, beyond even the finest emotions - beyond even self-awareness. It can be experienced even in the first few days of learning to meditate.
Transcending is the complete settling of the mind. It's spontaneous, once the right conditions are established. Like waves on water becoming fewer and smaller until the water is perfectly still.
A natural process
Transcendental Meditation is not simple relaxation, nor is it controlling or training the mind. It is not trying to be in the now, or a change of attitude, belief or value system.
It's one of the simplest things you will ever do. Children as young as 5 can practise it without difficulty. You don't have to develop a skill or have any aptitude. It's purely a matter of creating the conditions for a built-in physiological response to take place.
This is nature's way - the nervous system's way - of restoring mind and body to full and proper functioning. Dysfunction – the accumulated effects of wear and tear, stress and strain, boredom, and health damaging behaviour – is gradually replaced with greater self-regulation, growth and lasting fulfilment.
Every one is different. We all follow a different journey. Every individual's experience of Transcendental Meditation may be slightly different. But anyone can draw from their own inner essential nature, to blossom and flourish in life.
"It is possible for everyone to go deep within and saturate their mind with inner happiness, with that unlimited pure intelligence that dwells at the source of thought."
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Founder of Transcendental Meditation
Come and give it a try
Find out how leading figures as well as local people see Transcendental Meditation as an essential part of their life. Regular introductory talks are held locally by certified TM teachers. They take just over an hour and there is no charge.