Thursday, February 22, 2007

Comment Rescue

From time to time, a commenter makes a point so clearly that we want to showcase it in the main TM-Free Blog. Commenter "Boaz" discusses the need for "warning labels" for Transcendental Meditation -- and truth in advertising. Below is an anonymous post, followed by Boaz's response. Way to go, Boaz!

Anonymous said:

A warning label for learning TM?

Are you joking? I've bought sets of kitchen knives, which I've occasionally nicked myself on, and automobiles which I've had fender benders in, and neither came with a warning label.

I've also learned TM, and over the decades of regular use have nary a scratch or odd occurence to show for it. It works exactly as promised.

So, relax your anti-TM agenda for a moment, grow up, and get real.

Thanks, you'll like it.

Boaz said...

There's a difference between a knife or car and a meditation technique. For the knife or car, its clear what its supposed to do, and the risks are relatively well known, because most people are pretty familiar with these things.

On the other hand, a meditation technique, or a drug is not so clear as to what its supposed to do, at least to the consumer. You rely on the advertising to understand what the basic function is.

You are like someone who took a drug and it helped them talking to someone who had a very bad reaction to that drug and saying that they should be quiet because you were helped by the drug. I suggest you grow up and realize that just because you had a good response to TM doesn't mean that others will as well.

This is an important point about truth in advertising. TM does offer benefits to some, but not all. Both from the perspective of the technique itself and the community/philosophy aspects.
Its unfortunate that websites like these are necessary to provide the appropriate warning label, that could be coming from the TM organization itself.



Boaz said...


I appreciate my comment ( original here)
being put on the front page, and I do stand by what I said. In the context of the comment stream where I posted, it was more clear what I was refering to when I advised "Anonymous" to "grow up". I somewhat regret flinging this back at them.
I should mention that finding the Trancenet material online several years back was a shocking, eye opening experience. Ultimately, I'm glad its there, and encourage this material to continue being made available. However, I am a little afraid of being drawn into a war, where one must choose sides.
Clearly you've all dealt with this issue for awhile and I don't claim to have answers.

Maybe its easier for me to not see it as a war, because I haven't been particularly hurt personally by TM. My mother is strongly involved, but I see it as not so different from being involved in any other religion, as far as her personal involvement.
Anyway, I'll continue learning and reading and encourage you all to keep up the good work while keeping away from the war mentality.

John M. Knapp, LMSW said...


This is a learning experience for me. There may be a point of etiquette that I need to learn, therefore. Would you have preferred to be asked before being posted in the main blog? Would you prefer that I take down your comment? Naturally, I'll follow your wishes.


Boaz said...


I'm also still learning about this medium.
I don't mind that you put the comment up without asking, but it would be nice to either summarize the context of the comment (that I was responding to a somewhat nasty anonymous comment), or at least put a link to the original. Otherwise, its not clear who the "you" is refering to.
Anyway, no big deal, and I'm honored to be front-paged!

John M. Knapp, LMSW said...

Will do, Boaz!


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