Huffington Post] We live our 24/7 daily cycles of life by going through the waking, dreaming, and sleeping states of consciousness--unless one has perpetual insomnia!
In our quiet moments, we often ask ourselves the
question, "Is there more to life?" or "What is the purpose of my life?"
In the search for more meaning, we tend to explore different activities
in the waking state of consciousness. We try to meet new people. Maybe
we find a new and satisfying job, get married, join a book club, start a
yoga class, go to the gym, take up an instrument or new sport, or go on
a trip. The list goes on and on.
The waking state of consciousness offers endless possibilities for
more enjoyment, but the outside is always changing, so the pleasure or
satisfaction that comes with these new additions to our life is only
The sleep state of consciousness
is essential for our survival, and serves to rejuvenate our mind and
physiology to meet the next day's challenges. During sleep, our body
gains the rest it needs to function effectively in daily life.
dream state, also called REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep, is also
necessary to release stress and revitalize the mind; research has shown
that it stimulates the regions of the brain used for learning, memory,
and filing of past impressions for future use.
There is a fourth major state of consciousness
that scientists have documented as being distinct from waking,
dreaming, and sleeping--transcendental consciousness. In 1970, in the
popular journal "Science", Dr. Robert Keith Wallace published a groundbreaking study entitled "The Physiological Effects of the Transcendental Meditation Technique".
research showed that the experience of transcendental consciousness
during Transcendental Meditation (TM) produced a profound state of rest,
deeper even than sleep, as seen by greatly reduced oxygen consumption.
The research also showed significant decreases in breathing and heart
rate, as well as indicators of deep relaxation, normalization of blood
pressure, and a state of restful alertness, as measured by EEG changes
in the alpha and theta wave activity. Dr. Wallace concluded that these
markedly distinct physiological changes indicate a fourth major state of
To date, there are over 360 peer-reviewed
published studies on Transcendental Meditation that verify the benefits
of experiencing this fourth state of consciousness--transcendental
consciousness. Research shows improvements on all levels of
life--psychological, physiological, and sociological.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi,
who brought Transcendental Meditation to the West, has explained that
transcendental consciousness serves as a bridge to three "higher" states
of consciousness--cosmic consciousness, glorified cosmic consciousness, and unity consciousness. Read More