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Cambodia: Book about Maharishi Vedic University celebrates decades of Consciousness-Based Education
by Global Good News staff writer
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17 August 2013
A book about education in Cambodia, from the time of independence in 1953 up to present day, was published recently. Written by the founding rectors of Maharishi Vedic University in Cambodia, it looks closely at the achievements of that university, especially in the post-Khmer Rouge era, a time of economic and political uncertainty.
The book, Maharishi Vedic University in Cambodia: Educational Reconstruction and Social Renewal, was written by Dr Lee Fergusson and Dr Anna Bonshek. It offers an in-depth look at the university's application of the Consciousness-Based system of education founded by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, including practice of the Transcendental Meditation technique.
Maharishi Vedic University has seen thousands of students graduate since it was established in 1991 and enrolled its first group of 557 students in 1993.
Virtually all of the students were new to Consciousness-Based Education. The goal of this educational approach is to enliven students' full creative potential. It includes the study and direct experience of the field of consciousness through Transcendental Meditation. Scientific research on Transcendental Meditation in education has found that it reduces stress, promotes integrated brain functioning, increases intelligence, and improves academic performance—among many other benefits for mental, physical, and social health and well-being.
Though the technique and approach to education were new and unique in the country, research found Consciousness-Based Education to be beneficial in students' academic and personal lives. According to a study conducted in the first years of the university, 97 per cent of students found it easy to practise Transcendental Meditation, while 96 per cent said that the technique helped them study and improved their ability to retain knowledge.
Maharishi Vedic University in Cambodia has also had governmental support, Dr Fergusson pointed out. 'The Royal Government of Cambodia supported the initiative from the beginning,' he said, adding that various government ministers and senators have also shown their support through the years.
With input from the government, two main disciplines formed the core of the university's curriculum initially: management, with a focus on Maharishi Vedic Management (Consciousness-Based Management); and agriculture, with a focus on Maharishi Vedic Organic Agriculture, Dr Fergusson said.
He explained that part of the university's mission was to help develop the knowledge and skills to strengthen the society and economy of Cambodia, and 'the government felt these were areas that required most expertise for the future of society'.
About 4,000 students have graduated from the university in its 20-year history. Graduates have 'gone on to fulfil important roles in society', Dr Fergusson said, recruited by the government or local and international businesses (including Ernst and Young, the global accounting firm); as well as contributing to the development of sustainable rural agricultural programmes.
See related articles:
∙ Maharishi Vedic University in Cambodia: New book gives history of education
∙ Graduates of Maharishi Vedic University in Cambodia go on to find success
∙ Cambodian students' psychological health improves with Transcendental Meditation
∙ Researchers link Cambodia's relative prosperity and peace since 1993 with the Maharishi Effect
∙ Maharishi Effect had 'powerful and salutary influence' on Cambodia
Copyright © 2013 Global Good News Service
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