Yogic flyers plan palace

$1.2 million site off Nova Scotia to promote global peace

Toronto Sun/October 17, 2005

Halifax -- The spiritual guru who taught the Beatles transcendental meditation is planning a peace palace on two islands off Nova Scotia, where followers will practice yogic flying to promote global peace.

Supporters of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the Indian-born spiritual leader whose teachings also inspired the Natural Law Party in Canada's 1993 federal election, inaugurated the two islands in a ceremony last week.

They bought the islands near the town of Canso last year for about $350,000 and plan a $1.2-million development, including a peace tower, conference centre and school.

The group considers the area, just south of Cape Breton Island, the most easterly point on mainland North America -- and the first place on the continent to see the sun rise.

The islands will be part of the Community of Global Peace, and along with six other sites around the world, will form the community's so-called parliament.

Followers of the Maharishi, who is nearly 90, believe that if enough people around the world practise yogic flying -- achieved by hopping in the air while sitting cross-legged -- it will create peace and bring an end to conflict.

The teachings of the Maharishi have inspired a global movement, along with a multi-billion-dollar industry that includes schools and businesses across Canada and around the world.

Their plan in the mid-1990s to build a $900-million theme park in Niagara Falls, Ont., fell through.

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