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Celebrating 50 Years of Teaching TM in African American Communities, 1969–2019
by Harbour Fraser Hodder

Enjoy TM News    Translate This Article
18 March 2019

From Los Angeles to Ethiopia and across the U.S.

In 1969 a few African American meditators and teachers of the Transcendental Meditation® (TM®) program wished to bring the technique directly to their communities. TM Founder Maharishi Mahesh Yogi supported this vision to form an organization dedicated to teaching the TM technique to communities of color.

Transcendental Meditation Center (TMC), Inc. was first established for this purpose in South West Los Angeles, and quickly expanded with TMCs in Atlanta, Detroit, New York City, Oakland, St. Louis, San Diego, and Washington, D.C. The photo above is prized as the only one in existence of the group of teachers from the original TMC in Los Angeles. It was taken in 1977 at a gathering in Palo Alto, California.

In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of TMC, Inc. and Black History Month, Enjoy TM News is featuring this remarkable story and its legacy today. African American TMC teachers taught TM for the first health research on African Americans, participated in the first TM programs for rehabilitation in maximum-security prisons, and helped establish the first TM programs in urban schools.

In fact, their pioneering initiatives in education, health, and rehabilitation laid the groundwork for the successes of the David Lynch FoundationSM today. When renowned filmmaker David Lynch visited these TM programs, it was the students' stories of transformation that inspired him to establish his own foundation to teach the TM technique to one million children.

In a direct line from past to present, two of the original TMC teachers lead DLF's The Meditation Center at THEARC (Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus) in Washington, D.C. Executive Director Rena Boone and Senior Program Director Jé-Ru Hall are teaching the TM technique to improve the quality of life and help revitalize the community in Wards 7 and 8, as part of the largest non-profit social services collaboration in the country. In a nod to the beginnings of such work with TMC, Inc., The Meditation Center is known by the same acronym, TMC.

To celebrate the TMC's history and legacy, the 50th Anniversary Live Webcast took place on March 17. It featured inspiring talks and music by key figures, rare photos and footage, and a keynote address by Dr. John Hagelin, director of the TM organization in the United States.

Click here to read the whole story in Enjoy TM News — including videos, rare photos, and excerpts from two articles published in Ebony magazine: an interview with Maharishi in the May 1968 issue; and a feature on TMC in Detroit in the July 1976 issue.

Copyright © 2019 Maharishi Foundation USA

SOURCE: Excerpt from original article in Enjoy TM News

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