GUIDING PRINCIPLES OF CURRICULUM
AND INSTRUCTION

Four fundamental principles of curriculum guide the structure of the academic programs of Maharishi Vedic University:

  • the central importance of consciousness for developing the full potential of the individual and society;
  • the integration of intellectual understanding with direct experience;
  • the progression of study from unity to diversity to unity;
  • maintaining the wholeness of knowledge in every part


1. Central Importance of Consciousness for Developing the Full Potential of the Individual and Society

Success in any undertaking depends fundamentally on the quality of one's consciousness -- one's awareness, or degree of wakefulness. If individuals are fully awake and alert, their thoughts and actions will be powerful, right for the circumstances, and lead to increasing success. If students are dull and stressed, the most profound ideas and dedicated teachers will be lost on them.

Maharishi's Vedic Science brings to light that the familiar waking state is not the highest state of alertness. Greatest clarity of mind can only be experienced when the basis of the intellect, the unbounded, fully awake state of transcendental consciousness, is maintained together with focused thought. This is the quality of thinking in higher states of consciousness.

To develop consciousness is to develop the qualities of thinking necessary for effective action and behavior: creativity, clarity, flexibility, synthetic and analytic abilities (maintaining comprehensive understanding of the whole while focusing finely on the part), foresight, intuition, and the ability to make decisions that spontaneously uphold the progress and evolution of the individual, the group, and society.

Maharishi Vedic University is unique in being able to foster these qualities systematically so that day by day, week by week, students and graduates become more effective and confident in whatever they undertake without accumulating stress.

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2. Integration of Intellectual Understanding with Direct Experience

For knowledge to be complete, intellectual understanding must be supported by direct experience.

The curriculum of Maharishi Vedic University integrates intellectual study of consciousness with direct research into consciousness for the progressive unfoldment of the student's creative potential. For their research in consciousness, students practice the technologies of Maharishi's Vedic Science, the Transcendental Meditation® and TM-Sidhi® programs, at the beginning and end of the academic day.

The students experience this integration also through their study of Sanskrit, the language of the Vedic Literature. In addition to its meaning, the sounds of Sanskrit enliven in the student's awareness the evolutionary qualities of consciousness that each area of the Vedic Literature embodies. The sounds of the Vedic Literature are unique in their purifying effect on the physiology and ordering effect on the brain.

Students also integrate their knowledge of the disciplines of Maharishi's Vedic Science through fieldwork, organizing, implementing, or helping to teach programs in education, health, business, rehabilitation, agriculture.

In the professional training programs, each area has a four-month fieldwork component, which is guided and overseen by the faculty and professionals in the field.

Through this integration of theory and application the students at Maharishi Vedic University experience the practical value of all that they learn both for developing the full potential of their own consciousness and improving the quality of life in society.

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3. Progression of Study from Unity to Diversity to Unity

The sequential progression of study in Maharishi's Vedic Science Based Education is from unity to diversity, and then to the full unification of the vast diversity of knowledge in the awareness of the student. The student starts with study and research into unity, pure consciousness, discovered as the student's own Self in the simplest form of their own awareness. In this way students are given knowledge of themselves first, through study and experience of consciousness in its pure unmanifest state, where knower, process of knowing, and known are unified. With this unshakable, holistic basis established in their awareness, the students then learn how all the diverse values of Natural Law embodied in the different disciplines and fields of life, sequentially unfold from the unified structure of knowledge.

Then, after students have been exposed to the great diversity of Natural Law by the end of secondary school, the Bachelor of Vedic Science student begins the process of synthesizing, focusing on the holistic value of Natural Law, called Samhita in the Vedic Literature, which interrelates and interconnects all the diversity. By connecting every aspect of Vedic Literature with every other aspect and with its source, the students begin to comprehend the wholeness of Natural Law in their own awareness. This unification of all branches and levels of knowledge, made lively in the awareness of the student, is the fulfillment of the name "university"--the unity of all diversity.

Thus the students of Maharishi Vedic University come to know the unity of Natural Law in the field of Transcendental Consciousness--the diversity of Natural Law, as expressed in the infinite range of all disciplines and fields of life; and the ultimate integration of unity and diversity in the student's own awareness. Maharishi's Vedic Science explains how this process of education, which follows the natural evolutionary process, is the key to gaining increasing command over the totality of Natural Law.

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4. Maintaining the Wholeness of Knowledge in Every Part

The deepest reality of this fourth fundamental principle of curriculum--maintaining the wholeness of knowledge in every part--is that when the wholeness of knowledge--pure consciousness--is fully enlivened in the student's awareness, then everything the student attends to, thinks about, feels, or does is imbued with maximum alertness. When the holistic value of life is lively in awareness, then one naturally applies one's full creative potential in every isolated situation and circumstance. Since pure consciousness is the home of all creativity, intelligence, and organizing power, the more this fundamental field is kept lively in the students' awareness, the more creative intelligence the students will bring to every point of their attention.

At Maharishi Vedic University the wholeness of consciousness is maintained naturally in the students' awareness in two ways: through direct experience of pure consciousness twice daily using the technologies of Maharishi's Vedic Science; and through the curriculum and teaching techniques, several of which are described below.

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Last update 6/09