Sri Madhusudan Sai honored for lifetime achievements, commitment to creating a large permanent peace-creating group

On April 3, with people from across the MIU and Fairfield community crowded into the Golden Dome, Sri Madhusudan Sai — known for his global mission of service and spirituality across 33 countries, supporting thousands of underprivileged people through free healthcare, free education, and free nutrition — was awarded a Doctor of World Peace honoris causa degree for his achievements in service to humanity and his recent pledge of support for establishing a large, permanent peace-creating group in India.

“It gives us immense joy to honor you for your lifetime of exemplary service to our world family, with the goal of creating a happy, healthy, peaceful, enlightened world,” said MIU President John Hagelin, reading from the diploma being presented.

Service to the underserved

Sri Madhusudan Sai has established high quality and large volume hospitals, wellness centers, and mobile hospital services across India and overseas, serving rural areas without access to specialty care and offering free care to children and underserved populations. He has created schools that provide “integral education,” designed to build character and train future leaders who transcend divisive politics.

And he has established a “morning nutrition program” that serves free, well-balanced and nutritional breakfasts to nine million children every morning in India, through more than 106,000 schools, carried out by 650 support staff and 135,000 volunteers, and supported by 150 corporate organizations and institutions, with nearly 700 million meals served to date. The Morning Nutrition program has expanded to include health, education, water, and sanitation to address children’s overall well-being and health holistically. More than half a million villagers have now benefited from clean drinking water.

And all of this absolutely free of cost to those being served.

To support these programs, he established the Sai Global Federation of Foundations, a non- religious, non-denominational, non-political community of organizations in thirty countries with the shared goal of alleviating human suffering and creating new opportunities for those in need.

Toward creating a large peace-creating group

Especially meaningful to those gathered in the Golden Dome was his pledge to establish a peace-creating group large enough to create a global influence of peace — specifically, a permanent group of 10-15,000 people practicing the Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi programs. Such groups have been repeatedly demonstrated to produce measurable effects of harmony in society and improved quality of life for whole populations, the phenomenon known as the Maharishi Effect.

Sri Madhusudan Sai had visited the 10,000 for World Peace Assembly, held from December 29 to January 12 in Hyderabad, India, where nearly 11,000 people from 139 countries came together to generate an influence of peace and harmony in society and to call public attention to the power of the TM and TM-Sidhi programs to create such an effect, with the goal of securing support for a permanent large peace-creating group.

He was inspired by what he saw and committed to adding his support for that goal.

“One thing that we haven’t totally learned is how to be peaceful within and how to spread that peace to everyone else.”

— Sri Madhusudan Sai

“It is my most sincere feeling that the need for world peace is being felt now more than ever before,” he told the audience in the Golden Dome. “In this 21st century, most of the world is much better off than we were in the past. Yet one thing that we haven’t totally learned is how to be peaceful within and how to spread that peace to everyone else. And this is where the work that is being done here so much resonates with the work that we are doing in our organization — to bring both peace within and peace without. Without the inner peace, there is no way to world peace.”

“That is what the philosophy of this organization is,” he continued. “And I so appreciate this great effort being put by all of you, and I want to congratulate you for all that you have done and appreciate you for all that you have done. Millions of people across the globe we have brought so much of peace, happiness, fulfillment and joy to so many people.”

We are all deeply interconnected, he observed.

“Whosoever we help, we help ourselves and so also, whosoever we harm, we harm ourselves,” he said. “With this understanding of the one consciousness that unites us all, we can become better human beings. We can create better societies, better communities, and a better world for all.”

And he expressed his dedication to joining forces to achieve this goal.

“The work that is being done here in helping people transcend the limited mind into that boundless, unlimited infinity of consciousness is the solution to all the problems in the world.”
— Sri Madhusudan Sai

“The work that is being done here in helping people transcend the limited mind into that boundless, unlimited infinity of consciousness is the solution to all the problems in the world,” he said. “And we are more than happy to join you in spreading this work to more parts of the world, where people are taught how to transcend their minds and touch base with their true selves, which is that supreme ocean of consciousness that unites us all as one.”

“The moment we realize this, I think that would be the end to all the disharmony, conflict, all the wars and all the discrimination and hatred that still plagues the world. And all of us will work together towards this one common goal of achieving world peace in our lifetime, so that we all can see that day when we live together as one world family. ‘One world, one family’ is our motto and our goal. And I’m sure together we can achieve this. This is my prayer. This is my commitment. This is my promise to us that we shall achieve this.” 

With this closing comment the audience rose to its feet in an extended ovation. “It was as if someone with enormous resources had come and said, ‘I am going to make your dearest wish come true,” one audience member remarked after the celebration.

Dr. Tony Nader expresses his appreciation

Also present for the ceremony was Dr. Tony Nader, leader of the Transcendental Meditation organizations worldwide and noted neuroscientist and author. 

“Every word you said, every expression, has given me such a sense of assurance that the world is going to be better,” he said in response to Sri Madhusudan Sai’s remarks. “Before Maharishi left, he said, ‘The future is bright, and this is my delight.’ Because it was based on the knowledge that we can transcend difficulties, we can reach that unity, we can experience it and we can spread it. And the science has shown that it works, and that has been our focus and the focus of this great university.”

Dr. Nader continued: “All of us in our heart knew and felt that one day this will happen, that the world will be better and the world is going to be at peace, because the knowledge is complete and the knowledge has proven itself to be effective and the practical technology is there. And it’s my great joy to feel that this one day is actually today.”

Presentation of scientific research

The following morning Sri Madhusudan Sai met with MIU scientists for a comprehensive presentation of the scientific research on the TM and TM-Sidhi programs, with special focus on the Maharishi Effect Research. Presenters included John Hagelin, Fred Travis, Robert Schneider, Sanford Nidich, David Orme-Johnson, and John Fagan.

Dr. Hagelin presented his work showing the quantitative and qualitative parallels between the structure of the superstring, as identified in mathematical physics, and the structure of Rig Veda. Dr. Travis summarized the studies showing that brainwave coherence increases in subjects that are in the vicinity of a coherence-creating group. Dr. Schneider presented his work on the effects of TM practice on heart health and his work on a holistic “unifying systems medicine model” that encompasses and unites all aspects of health — mind, body, environment, and consciousness. Dr. Nidich reviewed the research on TM practice and mental health. Dr. Orme-Johnson described the empirical findings on the Maharishi Effect, including recent studies showing the remarkable nation-wide changes that took place during 2007–2010, when the peace-creating group at MIU was large enough to create measurable effects for the whole country. Dr. Fagan described the research that he and his team are conducting on the molecular changes that take place during TM practice as well as in non-meditating subjects in the vicinity of a large peace-creating group. And Dr. Hagelin concluded by summarizing the effects of the national demonstration project in 1993 in Washington DC.

“I am so glad that you have been able to put numbers and figures and all the scientific language to this knowledge,” Sri Madhusudan Sai said. “This is the way to go, because to make people understand that it works requires a lot of empirical evidence. And I’m very, very excited and very pleased to see that you’re already doing that, and I’m going to take all this back to India, where it originally started, because we need a sounding board — otherwise we wouldn’t have that appreciation on our own. That’s the job that you are doing, and I’m very happy and very pleased. Congratulations for this.”

Photographs by Ken West.