Excerpts from the Book
At the time of his interview, Bryan was a casting associate for a film production company in Los Angeles. He decided to learn the TM technique in late 2015 because of the anxiety in his life. He said:
TM’s a lot different than I expected I think because of the name Transcendental Meditation. That word Transcendental seemed like there was so much involved to get you to this point of transcending. That’s just how it came off to me, but then I found out how simple it is.
And particularly when I do the group meditations. There is a noticeable difference. We have them once a week – a group at the TM center and when I can get there, it’s a noticeable difference.
The most noticeable benefit has been with my anxiety. I guess I’d never really experienced or identified anxiety before, and I started to think it was stress, but it didn’t feel like normal stress to me and finally it just hit me like “Wow. I think this is anxiety. I’m having anxiety.” But at the time my life wasn’t that stressful. I was doing my job and things were going well, and I thought “why do I have all this anxiety,’” and probably I did TM a month at least before I realized that my anxiety was gone.
So, yeah, it’s working. And definitely my stress level has gone down and how I deal with events in my life is better. I’m less reactive and I don’t get as stressed as quickly.
Vidya Cicchini tried many different meditation programs over almost a 20-year period. Vidya entered West Point in 1976 as part of the academy’s first class with women in it. She graduated, was commissioned an officer in 1980, and then served in the military for five years before becoming a nurse, Vidya said:
Over almost 20 years I tried all the other meditation techniques: Siddha Yoga, Forest Zen, Japanese Zen, Buddhist and Christian contemplative, mindfulness meditation. TM [Transcendental Meditation] is the best!
I tried all these other practices and was only partially successful. Some of them worked, but again only partially. With mindfulness I had a lot of trouble with it, and I just didn’t find it very helpful. I couldn’t actually settle down and relax. It didn’t get rid of all the thoughts in my head. It wasn’t what I wanted.
TM was different, and it worked from the very beginning. It is much deeper than the other practices and really helps me put my body into a restful state and then at the same time, it clears out my head. I really look forward to the calmness it brings, and I seem to tap into inner resources that I did not know I had.