How is TM different from mindfulness and other techniques

How is TM different from mindfulness and other techniques

What is transcending?

Transcendental Meditation allows you to naturally and spontaneously transcend – to dive inward beyond thought, to experience the most peaceful, settled state of mind and body described as restful alertness, or pure awareness. The deep inner rest experienced during the process of transcending gives you immediate and long lasting benefits (unlike mindfulness, concentration or contemplation).

“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

Experience the inner Self – An analogy

transcendingThe mind is like the ocean – constantly in motion on the surface, but silent and immensely powerful at its depths. Transcendental Meditation involves settling without any effort to the silent depths of the ocean – becoming recharged by that unbounded state of pure consciousness. As the mind quietens down, the breathing becomes very soft and the muscles deeply relaxed. The mind settles inward, beyond thought, to the most silent, peaceful level of consciousness – a state where the mind is completely silent yet wide awake. When the mind has gone beyond all activity, this is an experience of the inner Self, which is perfect peace, Transcendental Consciousness.


How does transcending affect the brain? Live EEG during Transcendental Meditation. Neuroscientist Fred Travis, PhD, during the David Lynch Tour (Emerson College, Boston; November 2005; 6 mins)



Other techniques

mindfulness, Transcendental Meditation, concentration, contemplationThe ability to transcend during TM is what makes it fundamentally different from all other techniques of meditation and relaxation (e.g. mindfulness). These invariably involve either concentration (controlling the mind or attention) or contemplation (an active thought process of some kind, or watching your thoughts) or focusing on your breath or other sensation. In this way, other types of meditation keep the mind active – which actually impedes the transcending process. In contrast, Transcendental Meditation is a unique technique that allows your mind to settle down effortlessly, it is unique.

A recent study on brain activity during meditation, published in the journal “Consciousness and Cognition” identifies three fundamental categories of meditation: focused attention, open monitoring or mindfulness, and automatic self-transcending – a new category introduced by the authors to describe Transcendental Meditation.


Transcendental Meditation is also the most effortless of all techniques. This is not by chance. Effortlessness implies naturalness. And naturalness is the key to effectiveness, simply because Nature knows best how to create optimal functioning of mind and body. Abundant scientific research over decades not only documents the wide-ranging benefits of TM, but also shows that these effects are not demonstrated by other types of meditation and relaxation, as is often assumed.

Are All Meditations the Same?- (4 mins), Neuroscientist Fred Travis, PhD, compares brain patterns of concentration and of Transcendental Meditation.

Holistic brain functioning

According to research, the practice of Transcendental Meditation is unique in many a sense. For one, TM seems to turn on the whole brain and make it function as a holistic unit. This is a common feature of those people who report peak-performances in business, art or sports. Another peculiar feature of the TM technique is that there is no difference between brainwaves of experts and beginners — one masters it quickly. In fact, the positive effects of practice are usually apparent already from the very first TM session.

Scientific research

The scientific research on Transcendental Meditation is the largest and strongest body of research in the world on any programme to develop human potential. With more than 600 scientific studies conducted at 200 independent universities and institutions in 33 countries and published in over 100 of the world’s leading scientific journals.

Researchers have concluded that Transcendental Meditation enlivens the body’s inner intelligence, supporting its innate ability to heal itself.

Comparative studies show TM to be the most effective technique for reducing stress and anxiety, gaining inner calm, normalising blood pressure, promoting self-actualisation and proving benefits in every aspect of life.

You can read more detailed description how TM differs from other techniques here:

How is Transcendental Meditation different from mindfulness?

How is TM different from other forms of “mantra” meditation?

Controlled focus, Open monitoring, Automatic self-transcending.

How Does TM Differ from Mindfulness?

A Scientist’s Reviews Three Types of Meditation

What about enlightenment?

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