To my parents






I would like to extend my grateful thanks to Kathy and all the many people who were, either directly or indirectly, of assistance to this work, and expressly to: Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Yolanda Baldi, Raj Varma, Andreas Müller, Bevan Morris, Brahmachari Satyanand, Steve Jeffery, Jerry Stovin, Walt Gibbons, Vesey Crichton, Vincent Snell, Peter Russell, Prem C. Pasricha, Joan Benesh, Mary Lou Jennings, Sarah Rose, Marcus and Phillipa Saint, John Windsor, Jet Fairly, Henderson Davison, Derek Dearden, Bob Rankin, Dinah Demuth, Roger Preece, Dario Ciriello, Sally Bowen, Sarah Buret, Surjeet Husain, S. Guruvareddi, the staff of Dhyan Vidhya Peeth, the monks of Jyotir Math, D. N. Upadhyay, and Swami Ashibananda and the other swamis of Gyaan Mandir Uttar Kashi. Also to the 'Anonymous Devotee of His Holiness Maharishiji Mahesh Yogi' and Bob Hopeless. A very special thanks goes to all the staff at Element Books, and to my loving family who have provided me with very necessary tea, sympathy, feedback and valued support, Richard Mason for help creating 'electronic' version and website. Thanks to Dandi Swami Narayanand Saraswati Ji for his blissful blessings.

Acknowledgement and credit should also be given to the authors and publishers whose works I have quoted within the terms of 'fair usage' and to anyone else who has been of material use or support whom I have unintentionally omitted to mention.




Maharishi Mahesh Yogi is a very famous son of India, so it is a pleasure to be able to offer the first major biography of his life and work. A thorough attempt to profile the man and his teaching has been undertaken.

He is a disciple of the late Swami Brahmanand Saraswati a former Shankaracharya of Jyotir Math in North India. Since about 1955 he been popularising meditation and has been assisted in his efforts by the support of the Shankaracharya's successor Swami Shantanand.

Though today 'The Maharishi' is an old man, he still actively leads his worldwide movement for the promotion of Transcendental Meditation (TM), and frequently appears on his organisation's satellite television channel 'Veda Vision', founded in India in 1998. His broadcasts are transmitted from his permanent residence in Europe.

Until recently some of his followers even tried taking the message of meditation into the world of politics, going so far as standing for election to Parliament in the UK, and remarkably, even fielding a candidate for the US presidential election. However in December 2000 his Natural Law Party was officially disbanded.

His life and work has prompted much attention around the world.

Following the successful publication of the English, German and Portuguese language editions of this biography, it is pleasing to offer a revised English language edition (which includes previously unavailable quotations attributed to the Maharishi's 'Guru Dev', Swami Brahmanand Saraswati) and important source material linking Transcendental Meditation with the Shankaracharya tradition.



The Maharishi Biography