John Lennon and George Harrison Showed up at Al Jardine’s Hotel Room to Convince Him of Transcendental Meditation

Some of the Beach Boys and the Beatles practiced Transcendental Meditation thanks to a run-in with Maharishi Mahesh. Here’s what Jardine said about how he got started with TM.

Al Jardine explained his experience with Transcendental Meditation (TM)

Rock band The Beach Boys jump off a ledge in front of the Eiffel Tower
Rock band The Beach Boys jump off a ledge in front of the Eiffel Tower | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Some Beatles were deeply involved with meditation practices, especially guitarist George Harrison. Thanks to one YouTube video, The Beach Boys’ Jardine elaborated on his experience with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s Transcendental Meditation — actually, two Beatles inspired him to start the practice.

In the 1960s, The Beach Boys were invited to perform for a UNICEF event in Paris, France. On the way over, they played a concert in London, England. At one point, Jardine heard a knock on his door, and “there were two Beatles standing there.” It was John Lennon and Harrison, who asked if they could come in, and Jardine obliged.

“They wanted to talk to me about something called TM, which is a short acronym for transcendental mediation,” Jardine said. “They proceeded to inform me about this new meditation and this fella called Maharishi… the guru to the stars.”

Al Jardine and the Beach Boys met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

After a “hibernation,” Maharishi decided to share his methods with the western world, appearing on American talk shows and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. With TM failing to “take hold” in the United States, the guru approached the Beatles, asking who could get the word out overseas. Their response? The Beach Boys.

“It might’ve been Paul and Ringo over at Dennis’ door doing the same thing,” Jardine said with a laugh. After performing in Paris, Carl Wilson, Dennis Wilson, and Jardine received a message from their hotel that Maharishi wanted to meet. 

They did meet, and the guru gave an overview of the benefits of looking inward instead of the path outward — taking 20 minutes out of a person’s morning or evening (or both) to come to a peaceful place.

“We’re always looking for experiences outside of our own experience, which is normal and natural,” Jardine explained, “but there are times when you need to go in in order to explore that other part of your being. It’s pretty cool.”

Jardine began practicing TM at 25 years old and continues the meditation technique. In fact, the Beach Boys released their song “Transcendental Meditation” on Friends. The track currently has over 200,000 Spotify plays. 


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What is Transcendental Meditation (TM)?

Transcendental Meditation is not linked to religion and is a form of silent mantra meditation still practiced today. The official website offers more information regarding teachers and the specifics of this practice. 

“You are not even conscious of that sometimes,” Lennon said of the experience, according to Transcendental Meditation News. “The only time you’re conscious of being awake is when you have been asleep before. So sometimes you come out, and it’s been 20 minutes sitting there. Now at other times, you come out, and it seems like no time has gone by at all.”