In our pursuit of a Bold Life, we strive to attain personal goals that express our dreams and passions. These things bring fulfillment and allow us to be our boldest selves. However, each of us can struggle in these efforts, therefore, it helps to have others who inspire us in our efforts. In this regard, Dr. Tony Nader, the world leader of the transcendental meditation movement, can fulfill this role. He has helped millions in their pursuits of a bold life through both instruction and example.
Dr. Nader currently leads the transcendental meditation movement as the head of the Maharishi Ayurvedic Health Center. But the path that he traveled to arrive at the Center was not a typical one. In fact, his training is heavily grounded in science, mathematics, and medicine, achieving tremendous accomplishments in these areas. But his revelation and enlightenment didn’t come from research or study alone. Instead, his enlightenment came through direct experiences with his own self and with consciousness. It has been these experiences that allowed him to lead a truly Bold Life. And these same experiences are available to us in our journey to a Bold Life as well.
A Non-Traditional Journey to Transcendental Meditation
Many philosophers and scholars alike have sought to find the meaning and purpose of life. The desire to understand why we exist in this world is something we all have in common as human beings. Dr. Nader was not different in this regard, but his original pursuits weren’t in philosophy or religion. Instead, they were heavily grounded in scientific study and medicine. He was originally trained in internal medicine in Beirut before receiving his doctorate in brain and cognitive science from MIT. He then went onto the become a research fellow at Harvard Medical School. By all accounts, he was among the elite researcher scientists of his time.
The research that Dr. Nader performed involved exploring the relationship between brain structure and function, lifestyle choices, and mood. As he progressed in his research efforts, he became increasingly interested in understanding how the mind and body related to consciousness. It was this curiosity that led him to study the Vedic science taught by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. And it was here that he discovered the power of transcendental meditation and its many health benefits. (Read more about the health benefits of meditation in this Project Bold Life story.) His teachings from Maharishi enabled him to better appreciate how the mind, body and consciousness were interconnected. And eventually, his insights and growth earned him tremendous respect from others in the field. In 2008, after the passing of Maharishi, Dr. Nader was named his successor as the leader of the transcendental meditation movement.
Understanding Transcendental Meditation
In order to understand the process and concepts of transcendental meditation, it’s important to know what transcendental means. In essence, it means to “go beyond” and to reach a place within ourselves where our mind is quiet. Dr. Nader uses the analogy of an ocean to help explain how this transcendental meditation journey occurs. The surface of the ocean is where waves are active, which reflects thoughts of our active mind. But as we meditation and go deeper within ourselves, it’s like going deeper and deeper under the surface. By the time we reach the ocean’s floor, everything is settled. And when we reach this place in the mind, thoughts no longer exist. It is here that the mind is quiet yet conscious, and it’s where our pure being exists.
As you can imagine, the process of quieting the mind is a lot like falling asleep. As we attempt to rid our mind of thoughts and anxieties, we become calmer and less stressed. We move from wakefulness to a dreamlike state, and then we move into sleep. A transcendental state is actually beyond sleep, however. In order to get there, we must use techniques that allows deeper relaxation but prevents us from entering sleep. These techniques involve the use of mantras, which must be taught by an experienced teacher. Through Vedic practices proven over thousands of years, each of us has the ability to use these transcendental meditation practices.
One Total Consciousness, Accessible from Within
Dr. Nader is a prolific author, and he also founded the International Journal of Mathematics and Consciousness. His latest book concerning transcendental meditation is titled, One unbounded ocean of consciousness: Simple answers to the big questions in life. In this book, he describes how the mind and body are actually extensions of reality and our own selves. The foundation of this reality and our true self is located deep within us. This is also where true consciousness lies, and transcendental meditation is the means to access it. Whatever occurs deep within ourselves is manifest within our minds and within our bodies. According to Dr. Nader, all is interconnected, reflecting the source of true holism.
Dr. Nader goes on to also describe that this same self consciousness within us connects us to everything else. In other words, it’s part of one Total Consciousness and One Pure Being. When we tap into this through transcendental meditation, we are able to be our most creative and productive. And this also promotes holistic health, allowing our minds and body to rest and heal. If we choose to pursue this on a daily basis, we gain to opportunity to be our best selves, both inside and out. (Check out author Ed Kopko’s story on his 365-day meditative journey in this PBL story.) This is how transcendental meditation enables us to live our boldest lives.
Helping Others Be Their Boldest
Dr. Nader has always pursued a bold life that can help others be their best. He initially invested in scientific study and research in an effort to achieve these goals. He has since shifted gears toward enlightening others about transcendental meditation. Along the way, he has made significant contributions to personal and social well-being. And his contributions are likely to continue to be a positive influence on humanity for many decades to come. As a true inspiration for someone leading a bold life, Dr. Nader has touched many people’s lives. Through his message and techniques, this will certainly continue in the future.
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