Beware of Capitalist Hippies

People are feeling so shitty these days, that they’re desperate enough to pay just about anything for some relief.
Be warned: The capitalist hippies are coming.
Be warned: The capitalist hippies are coming.

Last Friday I went to an introductory Transcendental Mediation session. TM has been around for a while, but has recently resurfaced as a bit of a trend. Renowned for being ‘effortless’, and promoting stillness of mind, I still don’t actually know what the heck it involves.

TM is popular among celebrities like Marianne Williamson, and my current boyfriend Hugh Jackman. I’m not one to normally follow in the footsteps of the celebs (they’re just humans, after all), but TM was the exception. If spiritual guru Marianne Williamson does it, I wanted to give it a crack, too.

I’ve been meditating for a while, and figured that since I’d received great results from standard meditation, I could only imagine what would happen with Transcendental Meditation. I was probably going to transform into an enlightened monk, or something.

“Shit’s about to get real!” I thought.

There were five of us in the room including the instructor; a thin, robotic man in his early 50s. He rarely smiled, and seemed uninterested in normal pleasantries such as greeting the class. Robot Man immediately launched into a monotone speech about the benefits of Transcendental Meditation, which I’m sure he’d said word-for-word a thousand times before. He proceeded to play a DVD that belonged somewhere in the 80s, featuring a bald man in a tweed jacket, speaking excitedly of the scientific ‘proof’ of TM. This proof consisted of drawings of the human brain before TM, and drawings after TM.

I feel quite pissed off that in all the times I’ve wanted to prove my point to someone, I’ve neglected to simply draw a picture and shout “There – scientific proof! I win!”

Despite the DVD being dodgy as hell, I still thought I wouldn’t mind giving a real-life TM session a crack. I wanted to experience for myself what made this fancy schmancy meditation all the rage. That was, until he stated the price.

$1,500 for 4 sessions, each going for around 90 minutes. Excuse me?

I looked around at my comrades and tried not to smirk, thinking “ok, so we’re all going to get up and walk out together now, right?” Nope. The other three participants had their clip boards and were already signing up, possibly opting for the generous payment plan that was suggested.

Then it struck me: People are feeling so shitty these days, that they’re desperate enough to pay just about anything for some relief. Many of the hippy service providers know it, and they’re cashing in on the fact.

Ahh… humanity. Can you feel the love?

I’ve seen it in the conventional business world many times, with people being seen purely as numbers. I did not expect it to be the same out there in Hippyland. Business is business, I get it. But are we not humans first, all in this shit together?

I do know some people who work in the hippy arena who are genuine, kind and completely heart-driven. Naturally, they still want to make money, but they don’t charge at a premium simply because the world is disconnected and everyone’s miserable. Unfortunately, they seem to be the exception, not the rule.

So beware the capitalist hippies. They’re opening themselves up to the abundance, and to do so, they need you to open up your wallets just a little wider.