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China says it agrees with India to maintain border peace
25 March 2015 - China and India have agreed to maintain peace and tranquillity along their Himalayan border while they work on resolving a long-festering boundary dispute, China's foreign ministry said after talks in New Delhi. China's foreign ministry said in a statement released on Monday both countries would build on the results of previous negotiations and push forward in 'the correct direction'. (more)

Switzerland: Lowest number of murders since records began
23 March 2015 - Switzerland registered the lowest number of murders (41) since records began in 1982. Compared to 2013, there were 8.5% fewer criminal acts, 16.8% less drugs violations, and 4.7% less offences involving the law on foreigners in 2014. Homicides last year were 29% down on 2013 (56) and well below the highest recorded number in a single year (110 in 1990). The rate of murder in 2014 was 0.5 per 100,000 citizens compared to 1.6 in 1990, according to the Swiss Federal Statistical Office. (more)

Japan, China, South Korea hold ministerial talks
21 March 2015 - The foreign ministers South Korea, China, and Japan met in Seoul on Saturday for talks focussed on reducing regional tensions caused by their territorial and historical disputes. The three top diplomats met after a series of bilateral meetings for the first formal talks since April of 2012. (more)

UN chief calls for efforts to 'fill world with happiness'
20 March 2015 - Happiness for the entire human family is one of the main goals of the United Nations, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon declared on 20 April, as the Organization kicked-off its global celebrations marking the annual observance of the International Day of Happiness. 'Peace, prosperity, lives of dignity for all -- this is what we seek. We want all men, women, and children to enjoy all their human rights. We want all countries to know the pleasure of peace,' the Secretary-General said in his message for the Day. (more)

China, Japan agree to keep momentum alive for better ties
19 March 2015 - China and Japan held their first security talks in four years on Thursday and agreed to keep alive and foster a nascent recovery in bilateral ties plagued by the legacy of Japan's wartime aggression and a territorial dispute. In a sign of a thaw in Sino-Japanese ties, foreign ministers of Japan, China, and South Korea are set to meet on Saturday in Seoul for the first time in nearly three years. (more)

US begins destroying its largest cache of chemical weapons
18 March 2015 - The U.S. Army began destroying the nation's largest remaining stockpile of chemical weapons Wednesday, using explosives to rip open a container of mustard agent inside a sealed chamber and then flooding it with another chemical to neutralize it. The U.S. acquired 30,600 tons of mustard and nerve agents, but it never used them in war. Nearly 90 percent of its original stockpile has already been destroyed. (more)

Iranians express optimism over nuclear agreement
17 March 2015 - A senior Iranian official suggested Tuesday that Iran is nearing a preliminary deal with the U.S. and five world powers that would lead to a breakthrough eluding them for more than a decade -- a formal pact limiting Tehran's ability to make an atomic weapon while easing punitive economic sanctions on the Islamic Republic. (more)

Canada joins global treaty to ban cluster bombs
16 March 2015 - Canada has finally ratified the international treaty to ban cluster bombs, joining 89 other states that have pledged to eliminate the deadly weapons. Along with the ratification announcement, Foreign Minister Rob Nicholson also pledged $2.4-million in land mine and cluster munition clearance and education in Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, and Colombia. (more)

EU plans high-level visit to Cuba as ties with West warm
14 March 2015 - The European Union's foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, is to visit Cuba this month in the latest sign of warming relations between the Communist-ruled island and the West. She will be the most senior EU official to visit Cuba in recent years, and the trip comes as both the 28-nation EU and the United States have made diplomatic overtures to the island. (more)

Colombia is converting former death squad members into yoga teachers
13 March 2015 - In New York or Los Angeles, it's pretty common to learn that a yoga teacher used to be a dancer, an actor, or even a former Wall Street banker. In Colombia, the teacher may also be an ex-member of a Colombian death squad. Since 2010, a local organization called Dunna: Alternativas Creativas Para la Paz (Dunna: Creative Alternatives for Peace) has been gradually introducing the basic poses to two groups for whom yoga has been a foreign concept: the poor, mostly rural victims of Colombia's-century conflict and the guerilla fighters who once terrorized them. Hundreds of ­ex-militants have already taken the offered yoga courses. A dozen now plan to teach yoga to others. (more)

Success of Maharishi's Programmes
10 Short Summaries of Top Stories

President Obama, PM Netanyahu, military leaders urged to adopt Invincible Defence Technology: The Daily Mail International (Pakistan)
27 March 2015 - 'According to US President Barack Obama, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to the US Congress did not offer any ''viable alternatives'' regarding the ongoing negotiations with Iran concerning their alleged quest to obtain nuclear weapons,' writes Dr David Leffler in The Daily Mail International (Pakistan). Actually, he explains, 'neither leader's current strategies offer a scientifically-validated, field-tested means to solve this immediate crisis. Nor do they offer such an approach to rapidly dissipate the rapidly growing perilous instability in the Middle East.' Dr Leffler urges government and military leaders to quickly implement a proven, practicable, non-violent alternative, verified by extensive peer-reviewed research and military field tests: Invincible Defence Technology (IDT), which includes daily practice by specially trained military units of Transcendental Meditation and its advanced programmes to dramatically reduce social stress throughout the region. 'If the US military and/or Israeli military or any other organization intervened with this proven advanced military solution, rising tensions in the Middle East could be rapidly reduced.' (more)

Historic Vedic India conference talks available for online viewing
25 March 2015 - Videos of the main talks from the historic three-day International Conference to Re-Establish Ideal Vedic India, which was held 20-22 February in New Delhi and featured many leading Indian and international scientists and Vedic scholars, are now being made available online. Now 'people everywhere can learn of the scientific foundations and reality of Veda and the practical programmes to create an ideal India and a peaceful, prosperous world,' said Dr Bevan Morris, President of Maharishi University of Management in the USA. Dr Morris led a delegation of distinguished MUM faculty and trustees who participated in the conference. (more)

Tolerance as a state of being
22 March 2015 - As tensions rose in Paris and demonstrations swept western Europe in January, people around the world wondered how to stop religious intolerance and promote peace and goodwill among all people. 'When someone has a strong sense of self, a strong sense of who they are, they don't feel threatened by another person for having a different belief, race or religion, because they experience the connectedness between all beings on a deep level,' writes Linda Egenes. Citing research on Transcendental Meditation, she also quotes Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who said in 1971 that when individuals beginning TM 'start to dive deep within, they begin to feel better and the stresses are less, and life becomes easier and ''help thy neighbor'' becomes an instinct, an inspiration to everyone. . . . so in this way one begins to live their religion. Living the religion is by developing pure consciousness'. (more)

Maharishi: The goal of meditation
19 March 2015 - Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, speaking in 1972 in Cambridge, Massachusetts, explained that regular practice of Transcendental Meditation is designed to produce a state of fulness even in dynamic activity. 'We want that the fulfilment gained during meditation--that state of contentment, balanced state of life, home of all knowledge--should not go away when we enter into activity,' Maharishi said. This can be realized over time, he explained, through the regular alternation of deep rest during TM with activity during the day. 'The procedure of alternation of meditation and activity has been designed to produce a permanent state of the physiology which will create and maintain that unbounded awareness in a very natural way, no matter what we're doing.' Excerpts from Maharishi's address are currently featured on the Excellence in Action page of Global Good News. (more)

Faculty of Maharishi University of Management address Delhi conference to re-establish Vedic India
14 March 2015 - Last month Maharishi University of Management President Dr Bevan Morris and nine faculty members and trustees participated in and helped to organize a historic conference to re-enliven the Vedic tradition in India. The International Conference to Re-Establish Vedic India, held 20-22 February in New Delhi, was notable for bringing together government ministers, leaders of Indian spiritual organizations, and leaders of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's worldwide organizations. (more)

Mind Medicine - Ours Magazine on Transcendental Meditation
3 March 2015 - Soon after learning Transcendental Meditation, the author of a recent article in Ours Magazine describes 'an overarching calm and perceptiveness that gradually, and for the better, inhabits more and more of your being'. Other topics covered in the article range from how TM differs from contemplative and concentrative techniques, to the value of proper instruction from a certified teacher of the technique. (more)

Inmates can find freedom behind bars
23 February 2015 - Since 2009, 225 inmates of Oregon State Correctional Institution in the USA have learned Transcendental Meditation, and staff say the programme has produced significant changes in their mood and behaviour. One participant, Sisi Faupau, found that meditating helped him 'connect with the good in himself'. Practising TM regularly after his release from OSCI, Sisi says he has put prison life behind him. Dr Michael Puerini, the institution's medical director, says, 'I think that TM can really help people broaden their focus. There's something about TM that brings out compassion. I don't know how it works, but it does. And a compassionate person is a healthier person.' (more)

International Conference to Re-Establish Vedic India: 20-22 February, New Delhi
19 February 2015 - Under the joint auspices of the Foundation for Vedic India and Maharishi Veda Vyas Pratishthan, a historic first International Conference to Re-Establish Vedic India is being held in New Delhi from 20 to 22 February. The purpose of the conference is to re-enliven interest in Veda on the basis of the scientific reality that the application of Veda can benefit every area of human life and endeavour. The conference is gathering some of the most distinguished intellectuals, scientists, and scholars from India and around the world on one platform to present the Vedas in a scientific light and truly make India a great lighthouse of peace for the world. (more)

Three examples of Maharishi Vastu architecture in Japan
15 February 2015 - This month's Maharishi Vastu newsletter reports on three 'especially striking buildings' in Japan that have been designed according to Maharishi Vastu architecture. Two are private homes built in Ryugasaki, northeast of Tokyo and the other is the national headquarters for the Transcendental Meditation organization. All are 'excellent examples of how Maharishi Vastu architecture can incorporate any local traditions of design' while creating beneficial effects for their owners. (more)

Invincibility and peace for the world: Far-reaching goals of the TM organization for women
9 February 2015 - Maharishi Mahesh Yogi introduced Transcendental Meditation to the west in the 1960s, and encouraged scientific research, which found a unique style of optimal brain functioning and physiological functioning during the practice. Maharishi established the women's TM teaching wing in 2007 'to raise the quality of life of every woman, mother, and child in 192 countries', writes Vanessa Vidal, National Director in the USA. 'One integral goal of our women's organization is to secure invincibility and peace in the world. The strength of society and the character of national life directly depend on the quality of consciousness of the women of the nation. It is through our own growing personal harmony and enlightenment that we will most effectively transform the world.' (more)

10 Short Summaries of Top Stories

Boko Haram kills 41, prevents hundreds voting in Nigeria
29 March 2015 - Boko Haram extremists killed 41 people, including a legislator, and scared hundreds of people from polling stations in the northeast, but millions voted across Nigeria Saturday in the most closely contested presidential race in the nation's history. All the Boko Haram attacks took place in northeastern Nigeria, where the military Friday announced it had cleared the Islamic extremists from all major centers, including the headquarters of their so-called Islamic caliphate. (more)

Terror attack in Tunisia a fresh blow to tourism industry
20 March 2015 - The terror attack in Tunisia that killed 21 people is a fresh blow to the North African nation's tourism industry, which has been struggling since the country's revolution of 2011. Tourism to Tunisia plunged after the revolution in 2011 led to the overthrow of an authoritarian president and augured the so-called Arab Spring. The country has set forth on a democratic path since but the number of tourists never fully recovered. And yet 2015 began with promise for Tunisian tourism. National Geographic Traveler listed Tunis on its top 20 destinations for 2015, citing its 'cultural energy,' festivals, and yes, the Bardo museum, known for antiquities. (Foreign tourists scrambled in panic Wednesday after militants stormed the Bardo museum in Tunisia's capital and killed 19 people.) (more)

Islamic State claims responsibility for Tunisia attack (with AP video)
19 March 2015 - The Islamic State group claimed responsibility Thursday, 19 March, for the attack that killed 21 people at a museum. But Tunisian authorities said the two slain gunmen had no clear links to extremists, and analysts said existing militant cells are merely being inspired by the group, rather than establishing its presence across North Africa. Confronted with a poor economy, young Tunisians have disproportionately gone abroad to fight with extremist groups in Libya, Syria, and Iraq, including some affiliated with the Islamic State. Upon their return home, some may have decided to carry out attacks on their own. The deaths of so many foreigners will damage Tunisia's tourism industry, which draws thousands of foreigners to its Mediterranean beaches, desert oases, and ancient Roman ruins. The industry had just started to recover after years of decline. (more)

IS in Libya kills 12 fighters loyal to Tripoli government
18 March 2015 - An attack by militants from Libya's Islamic State affiliate on Wednesday killed 12 fighters loyal to the militia-backed government based in the country's capital, Tripoli, according to a militia statement. It was the latest in a deadly campaign by IS extremists seeking to expand their foothold in the country and targeting Libya's lucrative oil facilities. The militants have already overrun several oil fields and control the cities of Sirte and the eastern city of Darna. (more)

Museum attack in Tunisian capital kills 19; 2 gunmen slain
18 March 2015 - Foreign tourists scrambled in panic Wednesday after militants stormed a museum in Tunisia's capital and killed 19 people, 'shooting at anything that moved,' a witness said. At least 44 people were wounded. It was the deadliest attack on civilians in the North African country in 13 years. Tunisians overthrew their dictator in 2011 and kicked off the Arab Spring that spread across the region. While the uprising built a new democracy, the country has also struggled with economic problems and attacks by extremists. (more)

The Latest: Tunisia says 21 dead including 17 tourists
18 March 2015 - Tunisia's Prime Minister says a total of 21 people have died in the attack against the Bardo museum, including 17 tourists, two Tunisians, and two gunmen. An expert on extremism says that Twitter accounts linked to the Islamic State group are voicing elation at the attack. (more)

IS destroying another ancient archaeological site in Iraq
7 March 2015 - Islamic State militants continued their campaign targeting cultural heritage sites in territories they control in northern Iraq, looting and damaging the ancient city of Hatra just one day after bulldozing the historic city of Nimrud, according to Iraqi government officials and local residents. The destruction in Hatra comes as the militant Islamic group fended off an Iraqi army offensive in Saddam Hussein's hometown and fought pitched battles in eastern Syria in an area populated by predominantly Christian villages. Iraqi officials in the northern city of Mosul said Saturday that Islamic State militants have begun demolishing Hatra, a move UNESCO described as 'cultural cleansing'. (more)

Nigeria's Boko Haram pledges allegiance to Islamic State
7 March 2015 - Nigeria's home-grown Boko Haram group, newly weakened by a multinational force that has dislodged it from a score of northeastern towns, reportedly pledged formal allegiance to the Islamic State group. The pledge to IS came in an Arabic audio message with English subtitles alleged to have come from Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau and posted Saturday on Twitter, according to the SITE Intelligence monitoring service. Though there was no way to independently verify the message, it comes weeks after Boko Haram's new Twitter account broadcast that the group's Shura council was considering whether to swear formal allegiance to IS. In earlier video messages last year, Shekau sent greetings and praise to both al-Baghdadi and leaders of al-Qaida. But Boko Haram has never been an affiliate of al-Qaida, some analysts surmise because al-Qaida considers the Nigerians' indiscriminate slaughter of Muslim civilians as un-Islamic. (more)

IS group erasing history, culture in Syria, Iraq
6 March 2015 - The Islamic State group's destruction of the ancient city of Nimrud in northern Iraq is part of a systematic campaign to destroy archaeological sites it says promote apostasy. Some of the world's most precious cultural treasures, including ancient sites in the cradle of civilization, are in areas controlled by the group and at the mercy of extremists bent on wiping out all non-Islamic culture and history. The rampage, targeting priceless cultural artifacts often spanning thousands of years, has sparked global outrage and accusations of war crimes. The militants are also believed to be selling ancient artifacts on the black market in order to finance their bloody campaign across the region. Here's a look at some of the major sites destroyed by IS in Iraq and Syria, and others under their control: (more)

Outrage: Extremists take ancient statues, damage Iraqi site
6 March 2015 - Islamic State extremists trucked away statues as they damaged the irreplaceable remains of an ancient Assyrian capital, a local resident and a top UN official told The Associated Press Friday. Nimrud, a nearly 3,000-year-old city in present-day Iraq, included monumental statues of winged bulls, bearded horsemen, and other winged figures, all symbols of an ancient Mesopotamian empire in the cradle of Western civilization. Iraq's most revered Shiite cleric, the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, said in his Friday sermon that the extremists are savaging Iraq, 'not only in the present but also to its history and ancient civilizations'. 'I'm shocked and speechless,' said Zeid Abdullah, who lives in nearby Mosul and studied at the city's Fine Arts Institute until the extremists shut that down. 'The destruction of Nimrud is a big loss to Iraq's history,' Qais Mohammed Rasheed, the deputy tourism and antiquities minister, told The Associated Press on Friday. 'The loss is irreplaceable.' (more)

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