Maharishi & Me

Seeking Enlightenment with the Beatles' Guru

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About The Book

Winner of the Ben Franklin Book Award for Autobiography & Memoir and the National Indie Excellence Sponsorship Prize from News & Experts!
Susan Shumsky is a successful author in the human potential field. But in the 1970s, in India, the Swiss Alps, and elsewhere, she served on the personal staff of the most famous guru of the 20th century—Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

Maharishi died in 2008 at age ninety, but his influence endures through the spiritual movement he founded: TM (Transcendental Meditation). Other books have been written about him, but this spellbinding page-turner offers a rare insider's view of life with the guru, including the time the Beatles studied at his feet in Rishikesh, India, and wrote dozens of songs under his influence.

Both inspirational and disturbing, Maharishi and Me illuminates Susan's two decades living in Maharishi's ashrams, where she grew from a painfully shy teenage seeker into a spiritually aware teacher and author. It features behind-the-scenes, myth-busting stories, and over 100 photos of Maharishi and his celebrity disciples (the Beatles, Deepak Chopra, Mia Farrow, Beach Boys, and many more).

Susan's candid, honest portrayal draws back the curtain on her shattering, extreme emotional seesaws of heaven and hell at her guru's hands. This compelling, haunting memoir will continue to challenge readers long after they turn its last page. It dismantles all previous beliefs about the spiritual path and how spiritual masters are supposed to behave.

Susan shares: “Merely by being in his presence, we disciples entered an utterly timeless place and rapturous feeling, and, at the same time, realized the utter futility and insanity of the mundane world.”

Susan's heartfelt masterwork blends her experiences, exacting research, artistically descriptive and humorous writing, emotional intelligence, and intensely personal inner exploration into a feast for thought and contemplation. Neither starry-eyed nor antagonistic, it captures, from a balanced viewpoint, the essence of life in an ashram.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Skyhorse (February 13, 2018)
  • Length: 340 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781510722682

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Raves and Reviews

"In 1965 at a Transcendental Meditation introductory lecture I first met Ray Manzarek and John Densmore, this was before The Doors, and may very well have planted the seeds for our communal creative? mind. Maharishi & Me captures a moment in my generation, where we turned to this great spiritual master who introduced meditation to the entire planet. We should heed his teachings and honor his spirit today, now more than ever."

—Robby Krieger, guitarist, The Doors

"I met Maharishi in Rishikesh, India, in 1968 where I took some iconic photos of the Beatles. There I learned TM, which healed my broken heart, and I found a sense of peace never experienced before. Susan Shumsky’s book Maharishi & Me captures that time in Rishikesh and tells her emotionally-charged, spellbinding story of 22 years of awakening and transformation under Maharishi’s tutelage and beyond. For anyone seeking spiritual understanding, I highly recommend this book."

—Paul Saltzman, bestselling author and photographer of The Beatles in India

"Susan Shumsky’s book Maharishi & Me is a powerful exploration of guru and discipleship. Her humor, insight and the intimate feeling you receive about their relationship is extraordinary. A great read for anyone interested in learning."

—Lynn V. Andrews, bestselling author, Medicine Woman and Jaguar Woman

"So many emotions churned within me as I read Maharishi & Me. In her incredibly heartfelt book, Susan Shumsky gives us a glimpse into a world that few people have ever experienced. Her graphic descriptions portray her awakening consciousness that occurred under Maharishi’s guidance and also evoke the tempest that swirled around this iconic guru. Fascinating reading from a great writer!"

—Denise Linn, bestselling author of Sacred Space

"Riveting! An eye-opening, enlightening, first person account of life behind the curtain of the TM Movement. I loved it!"

— Dr. Joe Vitale, bestselling author, The Miracle, and featured in The Secret

"Maharishi Mahesh Yogi initiated the current interest in meditation when he brought TM to the West. Susan Shumsky's book is the most comprehensive account of the history of his Movement and reveals what it is like to be close to a great spiritual teacher."

—Peter Russell, bestselling author, The Global Brain and From Science to God

"Susan Shumsky had a front-row seat at a spiritual revolution that profoundly affected all of us. She tells the tale with personal candor, a keen eye for pertinent detail, and a perspective seasoned by time and experience."

—Philip Goldberg, author, American Veda: From Emerson and the Beatles to Yoga and Meditation, How Indian Spirituality Changed the West

"Full of fascinating information about TM, its founder Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, and the celebrities who followed him, Susan Shumsky's book Maharishi & Me is a captivating read."

—John Gray, bestselling author, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus

"In 1965 at a Transcendental Meditation introductory lecture I first met Ray Manzarek and John Densmore, this was before The Doors, and may very well have planted the seeds for our communal creative? mind. Maharishi & Me captures a moment in my generation, where we turned to this great spiritual master who introduced meditation to the entire planet. We should heed his teachings and honor his spirit today, now more than ever."

—Robby Krieger, guitarist, The Doors

"I met Maharishi in Rishikesh, India, in 1968 where I took some iconic photos of the Beatles. There I learned TM, which healed my broken heart, and I found a sense of peace never experienced before. Susan Shumsky’s book Maharishi & Me captures that time in Rishikesh and tells her emotionally-charged, spellbinding story of 22 years of awakening and transformation under Maharishi’s tutelage and beyond. For anyone seeking spiritual understanding, I highly recommend this book."

—Paul Saltzman, bestselling author and photographer of The Beatles in India

"Susan Shumsky’s book Maharishi & Me is a powerful exploration of guru and discipleship. Her humor, insight and the intimate feeling you receive about their relationship is extraordinary. A great read for anyone interested in learning."

—Lynn V. Andrews, bestselling author, Medicine Woman and Jaguar Woman

"So many emotions churned within me as I read Maharishi & Me. In her incredibly heartfelt book, Susan Shumsky gives us a glimpse into a world that few people have ever experienced. Her graphic descriptions portray her awakening consciousness that occurred under Maharishi’s guidance and also evoke the tempest that swirled around this iconic guru. Fascinating reading from a great writer!"

—Denise Linn, bestselling author of Sacred Space

"Riveting! An eye-opening, enlightening, first person account of life behind the curtain of the TM Movement. I loved it!"

— Dr. Joe Vitale, bestselling author, The Miracle, and featured in The Secret

"Maharishi Mahesh Yogi initiated the current interest in meditation when he brought TM to the West. Susan Shumsky's book is the most comprehensive account of the history of his Movement and reveals what it is like to be close to a great spiritual teacher."

—Peter Russell, bestselling author, The Global Brain and From Science to God

"Susan Shumsky had a front-row seat at a spiritual revolution that profoundly affected all of us. She tells the tale with personal candor, a keen eye for pertinent detail, and a perspective seasoned by time and experience."

—Philip Goldberg, author, American Veda: From Emerson and the Beatles to Yoga and Meditation, How Indian Spirituality Changed the West

"Full of fascinating information about TM, its founder Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, and the celebrities who followed him, Susan Shumsky's book Maharishi & Me is a captivating read."

—John Gray, bestselling author, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus

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