Paul, Ringo Help Push for Meditation in Schools

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Byline: Robert McCoppin

More than 40 years ago, the Beatles created a media circus when they traveled to India to learn about transcendental meditation.

Today, Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr will lead a celebrity concert in New York to raise money to teach meditation to school children.

At a news conference Friday, "Twin Peaks" director David Lynch, the event sponsor, called it a transition of meditation from exotic oddity to mainstream practice.

"Meditation is no longer mysticism," Lynch said. "Its not new age mumbo-jumbo. There have been 600 or 700 studies showing this is good for the human being."

A small group of suburban residents tried to build on the celebrity pitch in Schaumburg Friday by holding a teleconference of the event.

Laurina Carroll of Streamwood, who teaches transcendental mediation, hopes to bring meditation to suburban schools. She plans to present a proposal to officials at Elgin Area Unit District 46 in the near future.

Any program would be funded by the David Lynch Foundation, not by tax dollars, but would take up about 20 minutes of the school day.

Meditation is taught under the program at about a dozen schools nationwide, including a Detroit inner-city school where its credited with helping to reduce violence and boosting test scores.

Research published recently in the journal Issues in Education found mediation also helped improve concentration in students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

But Americans United for Separation of Church and State in Washington, D. …