An Alternative Sentencing Program
Experiences of Graduates of TESP, 2007
2/20/07, after six days in TESP classes
To: The Honorable Judge David C. Mason
My name is Kelvin L. and I would like to thank you from the very depths of my inner being for making the “Transcendental Stress Management Program” a part of my probationary stipulation. I appeared before you in August 2003; I am not expecting you to remember who I am personally, but I do ask that you remember that what you have done for an individual has changed his life tremendously.
As a child
between the tender ages of eight and thirteen, I had been sexually abused
both mentally and physically with no holds barred, by the assistant pastor
of a church that my family and I attended. Not just because of the demonic
act itself, but that it was of the same sex (male)! My life was over before
I even knew what life was in its existence!!!!
The scars that
were left were almost unimaginable because my life had become one of cloak
and dagger, drugs, alcohol and sexual promiscuousness. I had never been in
trouble with the law before, which leads me to believe that it was my
destiny to come before you, simply because nothing else that I had ever
tried prior to TESP worked, even in the slightest form. I’ve tried drug
rehab centers on seven different occasions. I’ve spoken with both
psychologists and psychiatrists, with also being diagnosed as a lunatic.
I’ve even tried on my own to get past and over this horrendous lifestyle
that I was living, but to no avail.
health, mental state, and any relationship that I tried to maintain was
totally unsuccessful because I have two failed marriages as a result and
four children that suffered the backlash of my horrid lifestyle. I could not
hold a job for more than two months, maybe; not to mention that my attitude
was nothing of a desirable nature and my coping skills with stress were off
the chart!! I have always held on to the hope, faith and belief in God that
all of this torment would come to an end and now He (God) has answered my
prayers ☺[smiley icon drawn by author].
I joined TESP
on Feb 15, 2007, and just within my first six days, I feel as though I have
become a brand new living being. The program is totally beyond any doubt in
my mind the greatest program ever discovered because the benefits are
undeniably wonderful. The present relationship that I’m in has blossomed
almost instantly because my companion used to wait for me to say “good
morning” first because if I didn’t speak first, she considered it a bad day
ahead and would avoid me as much as possible. Since the program, she now
taps me on the shoulder and asks me “what’s your name again? ☺”
Then she tells me that wherever that other guy has gone, to please let him remain. We converse on a more intelligent level as two adults should and to be more specific, we now completely and honestly enjoy each other’s company. The two meditations per day has made my ability to deal with stress and other relationship (kids, siblings, associates, etc) extremely better; as a matter of fact my mom was so impressed with my recent change [to] desirable living, that she remarked that it’s something I should have done 35 years ago ☺.
My health is
much, much better, because I am able to sleep comfortably and peacefully,
while my state of mentality has increased as far as being able to think
clearly and am no longer the procrastinating person that I once was. I am
now awakening in the morning feeling pleasantly refreshed and ready to do
whatever needs to be done in the home, around the home, even on top of the
home ☺. I now seek employment with enthusiasm rather than reservation and
thinking I would be turned away because of my felony conviction and my past
history in general terms.
As in the book of Romans, chapter 12, verses 2 and 3, says about the renewing of the mind, through TESP God has done this for me and I thank Him every day for doing so. Mr Mason, I used to hear the saying that “everything has its purpose in life”. I understand that in spite of the old self that God ordained my appearing before you in your courtroom, and you sending me to Mr Farrokh’s teachings ☺. I don’t know how many judges use this tool in their sentencings, but truly, truly, truly, every one of them should!!! Mr Farrokh is a phenomenal teacher and human being. He is not only a great teacher, but is very caring and concerned.
With all the abuse, drugs, alcohol and sex, not to mention the mental anguish that I had suffered for more than 39 years, I couldn’t see any light at the end of the tunnel. From God, through yourself (Hon. Judge David C. Mason) and Mr Farrokh, and the “Transcendental Enlightening Sentencing Program” also known as TESP, I am now living in the light and the fullness thereof. Thank you, thank you, thank you and may God continue to bless anyone and everyone that has anything at all, no matter how large or small, for TESP.
YOUR HONORABLE JUDGE LISA VAN AMBURG,
My name is Carlos H. I was sentenced to the Enlightened Sentencing Project on December 7, 2006. Which was my 40th birthday. I knew this would be a big challenge for me because opening up to people is not my biggest thing to do. The day I entered the program I told my wife that this was not going to work out. She told me that I had no more choices. So I went into the program with a frown on my face. Just the thought of having to pay 220 dollars did not help the situation either.
As time progressed I realized that I could really get something out of this program. So with the help of Farrokh , Lawrence and the other members of the group I learn to meditate do yoga and become more relax under pressure.
I’ve done 20 other drug classes and never finishing none. But with this class I started realizing that I had a lot to give and a lot to gain. For the first time I realize that finishing this class was the first step to a long recovery process. Recovery is something that is a continual process. I have dealt with drugs and incarceration for the last 12 years. My recovery is something that I have to deal with on my own. It is not something that I can receive from somebody else.
Let me tell you how my life has changed since entering this program. My relationship with my wife and children is better. Now when my children do that upset me I sit them down and talk to them. I use to argue and fuss at them. I have seen a great improvement in my relationship with my children. They have also notice something different about daddy. I love the way that has improved.
The relationship with my wife has vastly improved. We use to argue all the time about how I was going to take care of this situation or that. I use to scream at her telling her that I don’t know or you take care of it. It was a situation that was very unfair to her. Our differences became obstacles when they wasn’ t even hills. Once I started this program and learn to relax I realized that some of the things that she asked of me was very important to our relationship. Instead of becoming defensive about everything I have learn to hear her out. In return she saw the difference in me and there has been a difference in her. She now says can I talk to you instead of you better listen. We have started to agree a lot more on situations or come to a compromise. It is a more relaxing atmosphere in my home.
My relationship to my understanding has become better. Because without Gods help sending me to Lisa Van Amburg courtroom and her sentencing me to this program I don’t know where I would be. I will like to express my gratitude to Judge Van Amburg for the program coming into my life.
My work atmosphere has improved. I have never had a job where I had to work one on one with the public. My attitude before was so unbearable that I could not keep those kind of positions.
My new position had me working with the public everyday. I am more calm and relaxed with the public. I have even been told by my boss how I am a wonderful person to work with. Talking about a surprise. When you are understanding with people it shows through. They also begin to be more understanding of your situation. Positive thinking and doing sends off that same kind of karma.
I will like to thank once again the great teachings that Farrokh and Lawrence have given me. Also thank you Judge Van Amburg for this wonderful life changing program.
Dear Judge VanAmburg,
My name is Carolyn B. [identity protected] and hopefully you can remember me. I wanted to share with you my thoughts and experience of when I was ordered to do my Transcendental Stress Management classes. When I heard the order of TSM classes come from you, I began to think what a waste of time this will be. I thought this process will be hopeless and pointless for me to go through. I was already ashamed of myself and thought that I was completely worthless.
My first class was not going too
good and I was trying to find a way out. Farrokh led me to a room by myself
and told me to think about it. It was up to me to continue with classes or
not. So I myself chose to stay.
At these classes I began to learn
that I really do have a conscience, I am a better person than I thought. I
had miserable days with family problems but it continued to get better with
my home meditations and going to classes.
There were days that I was with my friends and peer pressure was close but my self-control led me the other way. For example, I had gone out with my friends and they were all deciding to have a couple of beers one evening. The party seemed to get a little heavy and I was having stronger thoughts of what I should do, so I decided to go home. My mother expected me to stay out all night and mess up, but when I knocked on the door by eight o'clock she was shocked. She had tears in her eyes just to think that I came home and didn’t get messed up! I went in put on my pajamas laid down and decided to watch TV. I have now been free of drugs now for a year and a half. I no longer have to return to see my PO (Probation Officer).
I was under a lot of doctor’s care for blood pressure and nerves but as of now things have began to get under control. My blood pressure has gone from 178/100 to 128/70. My doctor could not believe this.
So, as for these classes, I would
like to say my self-esteem has finally grown and my life has begun to turn
around!! My family members, my mother, my sister and my daughter have even
stated they see a change in me and in them, also due to the meditation
involvement. I would like to give thanks to you Judge VanAmburg for all the
help and knowing this is what it would take to help me to relax and put my
thoughts back on track.
I would like to close this essay with informing everyone that TSM is the way to go. I could never have done this without the meditation helping me. At any time I would be more than happy to show my presence and give my advice to others that thanks to TSM, it is possible to change and you really can make it. I will also advice my friends, associates, and others to give TSM a try.
Honorable Judge Mason,
First of all, I would like to thank you for your leniency and consideration of my case. I’m indebted to you for your awareness of this program.
I must admit that at first I was rather skeptical of the program and had reservations about the potential of TSM.
During the first few months I remained a skeptic, taking what the instructors said and taught with a grain of salt. After a while I found the instruction and philosophy of TSM beneficial to me without me realizing it.
I must also admit, that having been around other members of the class, and witnessing the transformations that had been taking place within them, that I took a second look at my life and my behavior and redoubled my effort to apply TSM to my every day life
There are several changes in my life that have manifested as my meditations have progressed.
I have been working with my father for several years now and it had often been a source of great frustration to me. I was often irritable at work and often made mistakes due to that frustration. However, with this practice, I have seen and felt changes in my attitude toward work and having my father as a boss. My relationship with my father has improved tremendously and I have been able to verbalize my feelings more freely.
Another area of improvement in my life has been my relationships with my friends, brother and girlfriend. I’m not really an angry person or prone to violence but generally hold my feelings inside. Through TSM I have been able to come to peaceful and meaningful resolutions to issues with the people that I interact with. It has given me clarity of thought and calm that I hadn’t realized before.
Before starting TSM classes I was having trouble sleeping peacefully through the night, often tossing and turning through the night. By practicing TSM I am able to release the stresses that I have encountered throughout the day. I am happy to say that I have sleeping much more peacefully.
In conclusion, I would like to thank the court and Judge Mason for his recognition of this program, and its implementation. I have seen first hand the incredible benefits that accompany its successful practice. It is unfortunate that more jurists do not see the benefits.
1 4 07, Male, Age 26
Dear Judge Mason:
My name is N.M. I am 26 years old
and was born in the Middle East on October 10 1980. I hope the people
reading this will understand what I am trying to say. It is very difficult
for me to translate this into English. The reason why I began taking these
classes was to control my anger towards myself and other people.
In the year 1990 when the first Gulf
War started I lost many of my family members and that became a tragic loss
for myself. As a young man I saw many things I shouldn’t have seen such as
my father and my older sister being separated from my brother, sister and
myself. This made me depressed to a certain extent and emotionally scarred
for life. I know these excuses do not make for my problems but it made a big
impact on my life and who I am as a person. All these problems happened with
my family when we moved to the U.S.
When I first came here I met a girl and that’s what made my problems worse. It seemed everything was good in the beginning but first impressions aren’t always what they seem. We were two different people. There is a saying ‘opposites attract”. But in this relationship it didn’t come out this way. We argued all the time and there was constant fighting and all it did was make things worse. We were both physically and verbally hurting one another and the anger built up more towards other people. For example, when my mother and I would disagree I would take my temper out on her. I would throw phones, break anything in sight, punch walls and yell at everyone.
During my three years of probation I
took twenty-six anger management classes. In those classes they showed us
how to handle our anger. In my case these classes didn’t help me as much as
I thought they would. After anger management I began to take meditation
classes. For the first couple of days I didn’t know what to expect. What I
mean by this was how is closing your eyes for fifteen to twenty minutes
going to help me control my temper? I guess you could say I didn’t plan on
taking these classes seriously.
After listening to my teacher Mr.
Fahruk and watching the different video tapes I started to believe these
classes would help me. What meditation did for me is to calm me down and
make me enjoy the finer things of life. An example would be getting along
with my mother. We don’t fight anymore, and we do things together. Since
meditating I have been taking my mother out to dinner. I spent my Christmas
with her. Before meditation I would always be going to parties. Whenever I
had money I would drink or go to parties. I would go out in the evenings,
drink, and sometimes would stay away from home for three or four days. Now I
am usually at home in the evenings and am in bed by 9:30 p.m. I watch TV at
home with my girlfriend, cook supper, do the dishes and clean the house. I
even take the trash out—something I never did in my entire life! (My mother
or my brother or ex-girlfriend did this.)
Meditation has helped me in other
ways. For two and half years I have been bulimic. My ex-girlfriend taught me
to do this and both of us did it to not put on weight. After 8 weeks in the
meditation program I stopped doing this. I have no idea why I stopped doing
this but I just stopped.
I never stayed with any job because of my drinking and bad temper. These classes made me feel motivated by getting up in the mornings and want to go to work. It has actually taught me to take responsibility in life and trust other people. A great quote says:”treat someone the same way you would want to be treated.” My life really got back on track after participating in meditation classes. I found a part of myself I really never found before. I believe I will continue to meditate after this course is over. It would be a great gift if everyone who had the same problem as me to have meditation at home on TV.
There are so many thoughts and
opinions I have but it would be too much to write. I want to thank my judge
for sending me to these classes. I would also like to thank Mr. Fahruk and
Mr. John, my friend Lawrence and my Probation Officer Paul S. for always
telling me to do the right thing and for keeping me out of trouble. A
special thanks to Mr. Maharishi for making this program available.
Excerpts from Essays
And if a lot more people attended the classes, there might be less people in jail.
Just after a few meetings with the class I started to feel a change. I was more peaceful and calm with myself. I am able to think before I react to a situation or problem.
Before TSM I was a very nervous person, never happy and always angry. But since TSM, it’s like a light has been turned on. I’m always happy.
Before meditation, it was hard balancing all my talents, my job, and my family. It was just too much trouble and stress outside my door waiting for me. This class is helping me structure my life how I know it can be.
But I would recommend this [TSM] program to those who have anger problems, and to all addicted. This should be stipulated in everyone who is incarcerated and those being released.
Copyright 2004, The
Enlightened Sentencing Project