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MUM student offers profound and practical wisdom
by Global Good News staff writer
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8 January 2013
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An address by Patrik Siljestam, a Swedish student at Maharishi University of Management (MUM), to the university community was punctuated by frequent bursts of applause as he shared profound and practical wisdom.
The address was given at the 2012 commencement ceremonies, and Patrik was the class valedictorian.
After deeply appreciating his parents for raising him in the Ideal Village in Sweden (a community of people who practise Transcendental Meditation), Patrik explained what led him to MUM. After high school, he took various courses at a Swedish university, but didn't feel at home there or inspired or engaged in what he was studying. So he stopped attending school and found his real passion traveling to Africa and working there as a volunteer.
Patrik greatly valued the joy expressed by the people he met in Africa—'they were smiling and dancing and singing and laughing', but he also realized that many lived in poverty and were facing great hardship. This led him to realize the value of education in helping people rise to self-sufficiency.
Although Patrik helped schools in Malawi improve their teaching methods and even helped construct a building for a pre-school, it became apparent to him that he was providing external help, and that he wasn't helping the people from within. 'I realized,' he said, 'that true education not only teaches the students about the world around them, but also about their own inner self. I wanted to lead people towards fully knowing themselves and help them find true happiness within.'
With this goal in mind Patrik, who had learned the Transcendental Meditation technique at his own request at the age of five, decided to attend Maharishi University of Management where everyone—students, teachers, and staff—enjoys this practice for unfolding their full potential.
'I decided that I wanted to come here to MUM and study because there was no other university in the whole world, according to me, that could support this aspiration of mine'—to help people find inner knowledge and happiness. 'And I knew I would feel at home here and connect to people from a deeper level.'
Patrik appreciated every aspect of the university, finding the most important to be his fellow students. Of greatest significance for Patrik, the students at MUM have a strong sense of inner knowing. 'We ask questions not because we are ignorant, but because we know the answer deep inside of us, and we want to manifest that answer into the world.' In this context, Patrik told the audience, 'I want you all to remember this: that the unbounded ocean of pure knowledge exists within you.' He also enjoyed his deepening experience of this field through his practice of Transcendental Meditation, and especially the advanced Transcendental Meditation-Sidhi programme, which he learned after one year at the university.
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