Lionhead

Maharishi University

9 posts in this topic

I have been very interested in this school in Fairfield, Iowa called Maharishi University. I'm hoping that someone on here with more insight than me can shed light on what this place really is.

https://www.miu.edu/

Very much appeals to the new age type of person. Says it teaches TM as part of the curriculum. There seems to be polarized views on this school when researching it on the internet. Many people seem to love this university. It is accredited and on the surface it seems like a fantastic place to get a degree. I like the idea of a block system for classes, and they serve vegan meals. They have unique degrees, but not exactly what one would consider lucrative. 

Some people say this institution is essentially a parasitic cult masquerading as a college. Many of the faculty are their own graduates. I'm not sure what to believe, but I do know that it teaches Transcendental Meditation, a supposed technique that takes on the form of some kind of trademarked organization/ business. TM has a shaky reputation from what I've read, for charging exorbitant prices for lessons, so that members of the organization can make a living as TM teachers. The culture surrounding TM seems very ideological. On youtube, the tours make this place seem a bit barren, and there seems to be a disproportionate amount of international students here, not that it's a bad thing, but I would rather not feel like I am in a foreign country while at college.

As I'm choosing colleges I am currently deciding whether to pass this up. At best, this is a great college where I can receive an education and learn spiritual techniques, while meeting other people with similar interests. At worst, the veganism, meditation, and rhetoric is simply a veneer to cover up what is essentially a cult-like, fake college staffed by cranks.

I am stumped by this, to be honest. It is an accredited university after all.

It it worth the risk of attending? Or should I steer clear of this institution and try for a normal college? Or do you have any alternative suggestions?

 

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It has the look and feel of a cult, but I could be wrong. Nobody can tell you how you should live your life, though. If it resonates with you, go for it! 

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Posted (edited)

@Willie  I have not attended the school yet, so I don't really have much knowledge on it. I agree, it is my own decision, but because I am inexperienced and I lack worldly knowledge, I have little other choice but to defer to other people who may have superior knowledge. People on the internet have called this website a cult, which is a sentiment I do not agree with. The word "cult" is often used as a pejorative. 

It isn't good to think in terms of fear. If I am afraid to take risks I would only paralyze myself. I can only know through first-hand experience. I can always change schools if the red flags are too much to bear. I was just hoping if there was anyone on here who was familiar with this institution. I consider this website to be good resource for getting opinions.

Edited by Lionhead

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6 hours ago, Lionhead said:

@Willie  I have not attended the school yet, so I don't really have much knowledge on it. I agree, it is my own decision, but because I am inexperienced and I lack worldly knowledge, I have little other choice but to defer to other people who may have superior knowledge. People on the internet have called this website a cult, which is a sentiment I do not agree with. The word "cult" is often used as a pejorative. 

It isn't good to think in terms of fear. If I am afraid to take risks I would only paralyze myself. I can only know through first-hand experience. I can always change schools if the red flags are too much to bear. I was just hoping if there was anyone on here who was familiar with this institution. I consider this website to be good resource for getting opinions.

All good points, and it’s telling that you’re here after hearing this website seems like a cult. I have a friend who grew up nearby, and I visited their place a couple times. During one of the visits, we drove by the university and the nearby Vedic City, and something just felt off. Of course, it didn’t help that people there stared at us with disapproving looks as we drove by. 

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@Willie That seems to concur with my feelings. I am obviously interested in consciousness and meditation, but this school seems like a place for guru worship (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi has a shady history) and ideological impression. It seems like it could easily be a mill to recruit people into the transcendental meditation organization. The subjects taught here are criticized by academics from other universities. I can't join a cult, even if some of their goals are aligned with my personal beliefs (I tend to support anti-GMO lobby, as well as environmental conservation and the promotion of spirituality). There also seems to be scandal concerning the exploitation of international students, namely, they falsely advertise guaranteed internships at companies like Google and Amazon in their marketing campaigns overseas. 

Student reviews online (information on this school seems sparse) report that they force students to attend classes that are irrelevant to their degree. These unnecessary classes seem to consist of promoting the Transcendental Meditation ideology and guru worship. The incorporation of meditation seems like a positive aspect, but Transcendental Meditation in particular seems to be an excessively formalized mantra meditation.

I would rather not have an ideology and dogma inflicted upon me, especially in terms of spirituality.

 

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Posted (edited)

My heart is giving me an overwhelming intuition that this is not the right school, even though I have been enthusiastic about this school for months. At this point my research on the school has turned up some findings that cast this school in a negative light.

Tell me, if I have doubts, would it really be worth it to commit even a semester's worth of effort (several months of debt, time, and opportunity cost)?

My ambition in life is world travel, enlightenment and to make a contribution to the improvement of society, not to preach dogmatic views on spirituality.

To contrast with MIU, Prescott University is another school I am interested in. https://prescott.edu/

They seem to emphasize values I agree with, and is something I resonate with. Of course, with the introduction of Covid-19 college in general seems to have been diminished in value and reduced to online courses. Which is quite frustrating.

 

Edited by Lionhead

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On 8-1-2021 at 8:16 PM, Lionhead said:

would it really be worth it to commit even a semester's worth of effort (several months of debt, time, and opportunity cost)?

No. You'll make enough mistakes already, doing what you think is right for you. Don't add the things that you kind of already know are not, on top of there. Said as a person who did that often ;)

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@AdamDiC Because I would rather do that than work some wage slave job. At least school can offer varied experiences, allow me to meet more people, and teach me a thing or two. Better than working at Fedex. It's not sustainable, I know, but I cannot really tolerate any more stupid ass basic jobs that I don't care about and don't like to do.

There's nothing dignified about my way of life. It's another way of avoiding homelessness. I'm not some genius who's going to create some invention or business. I'm not intelligent enough to find a fun and cool way to make money. I'm not Elon Musk. I'm lucky not to be a homeless drunk.

 

Edited by Lionhead

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