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Jewish World Review Dec. 12, 2003 / 17 Kislev, 5764

Tom Purcell

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Consumer Reports

Peace, Man | "Man, did you hear that director David Lynch and some other Hollywood dudes are trying to create an organization to spread world peace?"

"Are you serious, man?"

"Yeah, man. Lynch and others are trying to raise $1 billion to create a Transcendental Meditation organization that will relieve the planet's stress and bring an end to crime, terrorism, war and other bad vibes."

"Transcendental Meditation, man?"

"Yeah, man. Their goal is to create an organization that spreads the power of consciousness based on the teachings of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. His mission is to bring enlightenment to every individual on Earth and to establish a state of permanent peace in the world."

"That's sounds kind of pie in the sky, though, don't it man?"

"No, man. Lynch and the other dudes say the Maharishi's meditation technology has been proven, through scientific study, to reduce crime, terrorism and war. I know it sounds radical, man - Lynch is well aware that people are snickering - but these dudes are dead serious about getting the vibes out."

"But how, man?"

"Their goal is to establish peace-creating groups around the world, man. These groups will be comprised of trained experts who promote Transcendental Consciousness, what the Maharishi calls the state of inner peace."

"Wow, man."

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"Eventually they hope to build 3,000 Peace Palaces in the world's largest 3,000 cities. Each Peace Palace will be home to a group of 100 to 200 peace-creating experts. These dudes will help the world reduce stress, promote physical health and unfold the mental potential of the local citizens."

"And they think that will end crime, terrorism and war, man?"

"That's the plan, man. By unleashing a new consciousness on the world, these dudes will be able to spread a positive vibe that will heal us all and deliver us from our pain and suffering. Then we can all live in peace."

"An ambitious plan, man."

"But peace can work, man. America is proof of that. People of all different backgrounds and religions live side by side in peace. No reason the rest of the world can't have peace, too."

"Man, I dig the positive vibe thing. Every human has a choice whether or not to take a positive or negative approach to his own challenges. Positive always works better in the end. There is love and hope, and it makes sense to spread these positive vibes to the world any way we can."

"Right on, brother."

"But we can't overlook the fact that throughout human history negative has been much more common than positive. It's been much more common for people to live under tyranny than to live the way Americans do. The peace and freedom we enjoy in America was a unique experiment that worked beyond anyone's wildest dreams."

"I don't dig, man."

"Take Saddam Hussein, man. He rose to power through negative energy - fear, torture, murder, secrecy. I hate to say it, man, but such rulers are way more common in human history than people like George Washington who wanted the people to hold the power. There are hundreds of Hitlers, Stalins, Ida Amins and Pol Pots for every Washington, man."

"I still don't dig, man."

"Don't you get it, man, there is a civil war taking place on Earth. It's a daily struggle between positive and negative, good and evil, hope and despair. Every man, every country, is fighting this battle daily. You're either moving one way or the other with every action you take."

"You're losing me, man."

"It's certainly noble to encourage love, hope and positive vibes, man - that is the stuff of heightened consciousness. But we can't fully embrace the positive without acknowledging the negative. So long as there are worldly, evil men - men who crave fame, riches and power at the expense of their people and the world - these men will have to be dealt with. And meditating and hoping for peace isn't going to stop them."

"Man, you can be such a downer."

"Sorry, man, reality can be a real bummer sometimes."

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© 2002, Tom Purcell