Too much of America is now controlled by the vast agro-chemical industry, poisoning us and our environment with genetically modified crops, fueled by corporate greed and manipulation. This has come with many well documented harmful effects on our health as well as the devastation of many species including bees, birds and butterflies.
However, back in 2001 Marharishi Vedic City, just 60 miles south of Iowa was officially incorporated. The city was inspired by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi who who introduced the technique of Transcendental Meditation (TM) more than 40 years ago and brought enlightenment to millions of people all over the world in a scientific, systematic manner. The name “Vedic” is derived from the Sanskrit word Veda,” meaning“knowledge.” Vedic philosophy is often referred to as the precursor to the modern Hinduism lifestyle.
A key move came in April 2005 when the Marharishi Vedic City council voted in favor of aban on the use of all synthetic pesticides and fertilizers within the city limits, making it officially the first all-organic city in the country, in line with the natural Vedic principles.
Maharishi Vedic City sits in the middle of 2,200 acres of USDA certified organic farm land and almost a decade on is still the only city in America that has banned the sale of all non-organic food within the city limits, with strict Laws that apply to restaurants and shops.
The Maharishi Vedic City Organic Farm, which includes 160 acres of fields, orchards, and greenhouses, produces a wide variety of produce for residents of the city and for commercial markets and is part of a community program providing customers far and wide with a wide range of produce.
According to their own website “Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs are designed to benefit both the community and the local farmer. Without the middleman mark-up, the CSA model presents a win/win opportunity: Selling direct to customers, we earn more than we would get selling retail or wholesale and our customers receive, not only price value, but a freshness value not available at retail outlets…… grown under exacting standards in fertile organic soils, our produce is picked and packed within a day, then delivered fresh to our CSA members."
Construction has begun on an additional 100 acres of greenhouses, which will supply organic produce throughout the entire Midwest.
Maharishi Vedic City currently has a population of just under 1300, when residents of the Pandit Campus are included (home to almost 1,000 Vedic scholars) and is governed by several protecting statutes, including requirements that all buildings conform to strict guidelines in that they must face east, in the direction of the rising sun, adhering to the ancient Indian architectural style that is said to bring peace and harmony to one’s surroundings enhancing health, happiness, enlightenment and consciousness. Each building also has a central ‘quiet space’ to encourage meditation, peace and harmony.
Quite possibly the healthiest city in America, it is home to Maharishi University of Management’s Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention — one of the top institutions for prevention and treatment of disease using the natural health care approach encouraged from the Vedic literature and teachings.
Education is key for the residents and their children. There are primary, secondary and university levels of education provided, all based around a system designed to develop and maximize the brain potential and cosmic creative intelligence of every student. Meditation is part of the carefully planned curriculum.
Many people first heard of transcendental meditation back in the 1960s, when the Beatles started following Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The city features two huge domes, one for men and one for women, with residents gathering en masse to meditate together twice a day.
Meg and Erik Vigmostad moved here from St. Louis in 1982 saying “We wanted to come to a meditating community…….we had two children at the time, one of them was an infant, and we felt like it was the best place to bring up our children.” Vigmostad acknowledged that the couple’s families thought they were literally “crazy” for making such a move as they considered, as many unenlightened people do, transcendental meditation to be a weird craze.The family has gone to thrive and enjoy living and organic and healthy life in the city.
There are many other local attractions with tourism being an important part of the city’s revenue. The Maharishi Vedic Observatory, a one and one-half acre open-air observatory of masonry sundials, is credited with being unique in the world for its ability to display, in just one compact carefully designed form, the whole structure of the universe along with all the movements of the sun, the planets, and the stars. The City’s website explains “It is the only complete example existing in the world today of this timeless knowledge. Research reveals that these ancient observatories existed in every culture at one time. Today well known fragments of ancient observatories remain at Stonehenge in England, Maachupichu in Peru, and other locations in Europe, Central America, and Asia. At the Vedic Observatory in Maharishi Vedic City one can view the heavens as the ancients did.”
Photo Credit: Maharishi Vedic City, Iowa
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