This week, I had a friendly reader contact me - always a pleasant surprise. Like myself and many of my readers, this woman regularly faces psychological turmoil due to the shortcomings she sees in herself and in her environment. This is not only natural but healthy - see Dabrowski on Positive Disintegration. The reason we experience emotional discomfort is because of a need to make changes to our lifestyles - this is how we develop into better people. As this happens on a collective level, society becomes more integrated and peaceful because the all individuals have a higher capacity to solve the problems they face.
My advice - as usual - was to introduce Transcendental Meditation or Natural Stress Relief into her routine as to help her move into higher states of awareness. With an elevated perspective, I explained, there would be an increased capacity for her to overcome any kinds of problems she may face.
A few days later I received another message where the reader asked if mediation required any belief. The idea that mediation requires faith or belief is common because of the general lack of knowledge about the scientific documentation now available. In short, techniques like TM and NSR (or any other form of meditation) are known to have tangible consequences on the physiology. There are literally thousands of scientific papers which document the body's response to regular practice of various forms of meditation.
I personally do not participate in 'belief.' The scientific method and the precise language of mathematics give us the opportunity to reveal Truth at a level absent imprecise subjective interpretation. In fact, the science of meditation is the very reason that I recommend it at all. I do not encourage others to spend time with a technique or methodology unless it has been proven to be effective.