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Cosmic Set-Up: How the Beatles First Met Maharishi

by laughing crow

My old friend Geoffrey Baker, an art professor at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa, once recounted to me the story of how Maharishi met first the Beatles in London.

Geoffrey was traveling with Maharishi in 1967 as an assistant (and later was with Maharishi in Rishikesh when the Beatles were there). Geoffrey recalls riding with Maharishi on a train across England, when, seemingly out of the blue, Maharishi asked, “How many are the Beatles?”

Geoffrey was surprised that Maharishi had even heard of the Beatles, being focused as he was on one thing: teaching meditation.

“I believe there are four of them,” said Geoffrey, himself a couple generations out of sync with Beatlemania.

Maharishi then asked that Geoffrey prepare four copies of “The Science of Being and Art of Living,” Maharishi's new book about the principles of meditation, and to give one to each of the Beatles. Geoffrey wondered where and how he was to get the books to the wildly famous quartet. But Maharishi assured him there would be a meet-up. Sure enough, with no visible orchestration from Maharishi's side, the Beatles mysteriously showed up at Maharishi's talk at the London Hilton, as the famous photograph (above right) of the Fab Four sitting with the master afterward attests—each Beatle sitting with his own personal copy of "The Science of Being and Art of Living."

Hear "Dear Prudence" and Watch the Vintage Video of the Beatles in India with Maharishi

John Lennon wrote "Dear Prudence" about Mia Farrow's sister Prudence, who was spending many long hours 'rounding' in meditation inside her bungalo during those weeks at Maharishi's Meditation Academy. "Rounding" is the process of practicing the Transcendental Meditation technique in repeated cycles, done for added benefit and deeper rest in the structured environment of a specially designed meditation retreat. Hence the lyrics, "Look around and round and round and round, round, round..."



Donovan Sings "Isle of Islay" for Maharishi

Paul McCartney and Donovan

Some songs that Paul and Donovan recorded during the sessions for Mary Hopkins "Postcard" LP, November 1968-January 1969.

While My Guitar Gently Weeps: George, Ringo, Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Elton John

Rare footage: The Beatles' early meetings with Maharishi

This Youtube compilation of old movie clips is fascinating. It's set to the tune of John's unfortunate and misspoken tune "Sexy Sadie, but, if one interprets the song as an anthem to John's own personal struggle with himself, one can clearly see who was the foolish one. Sexy Sadie is John singing to himself about himself.

In any case, the video enthralls.