Posts Tagged ‘Maharishi Vedic architecture guidelines’

Breakthrough in how buildings can promote health and well-being using Maharishi Vastu architectural design principles

May 31, 2022

Ancient architecture system as preventative medicine

Having understood the ill-effects of sick building syndrome and the need to better conserve energy by incorporating green features, architects are also utilizing certain elements of an architectural design system shown to reduce stress, improve sleep, promote physical and mental health, thereby improving the quality of life for its inhabitants.

Summary of findings on Maharishi Vastu architecture. Image credit: Maharishi International University

These findings appear in the first comprehensive review of 40 years of published studies on the benefits of Maharishi Vastu® architecture (MVA) published in the current issue of Global Advances in Health and Medicine (Vol. 11: 1–21): Managing the Built Environment for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention with Maharishi Vastu Architecture: A Review. Authors: Jon Lipman, AIA; Lee Fergusson, PhD; Anna Bonshek, PhD; Robert H. Schneider, MD, FACC. Access the Figures and Tables in the paper online.

MVA is a holistic wellness architectural system that aligns buildings with nature’s intelligence, creating balanced, orderly, and integrated living environments with the goal of improving occupants’ lives in several areas.

“We were surprised to find that something so ancient has so much to tell us about how buildings can improve our health and productivity,” said Jon Lipman, AIA, lead author and director of the Institute for Vedic Architecture at Maharishi International University.

Some of the key findings of the review include:

  • Sleeping with one’s head to the east or south is associated with positive health outcomes, such as lower heart rate, blood pressure, and serum cholesterol levels.
  • Homes with south entrances are associated with poorer mental health and more financial problems.
  • Facing east while working is associated with greater brain coherence and faster task completion.
  • Occupants of Maharishi Vastu architecture homes or office buildings show higher creativity and report improved health and quality of life.

Previous research on the impact of buildings focused primarily on assessing stress reduction and increasing comfort and well-being. The findings of this review reinforce the growing recognition that building design plays a key role in both causing and even potentially solving humanity’s health challenges. 

“Modern medicine now recognizes the powerful effects of the ‘envirome’ on health,” said study co-author, Robert Schneider, MD, FACC, and Dean of the College of Integrative Medicine at Maharishi International University. 

“The envirome,” he explained, “includes all the natural and man-made elements of our environment throughout the lifespan, notably the built environment. This review of the science suggests that buildings constructed according to principles of Maharishi Vastu architecture function as positive elements in the envirome to enhance mental and physical health and well-being. Further advances in neuroscience offer plausible physiological explanations for these effects.”

Maharishi Vastu architecture is the recent revival of an ancient architectural system from South Asia. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of the Transcendental Meditation organization, systematically integrated over 20 principles into a uniquely comprehensive building system.

Some of the principles included in this system are:

  • The building’s main entrance is oriented to the east or north.
  • The building’s walls align with the cardinal directions.
  • The floor plan assigns key functions to specific locations within the building.
  • The floor plan enables occupants to face the most ideal directions during work and sleep.
  • The architectural plans must adhere to consistent and precise guidelines.
  • In keeping with the idea of providing a healthy environment, the system emphasizes non-toxic, natural materials, increased fresh air, and reduced electromagnetic radiation.

The results of the review suggests that Maharishi Vastu architecture offers a viable approach for using architectural design as a tool for promoting mental and physical health. 

Source: EurekAlert! | Journal: Global Advances in Health and Medicine | DOI: 10.1177/2164957X221077084 | SagePub: PDF

Some News Coverage

The EurekAlert press release was posted widely on science news sites around the world, starting with MedicalXpress, Bioengineer, todayuknews, Medicine World Council, and many others. PsychReg published: Breakthrough Revealed in How Buildings Can Promote Health and Well-Being. Inverse published an in-depth report: This radical architecture style could make future cities good for your health.

KABC in Los Angeles invited Maharishi Vastu architect and US director Jon Lipman on ABC7 Eyewitness News to talk about the recently published review of scientific research on MVA. It aired live Tuesday, May 10, 2022 in their 7:30 AM segment, Study: Home design can affect your health. Here is the 4:20 minute video.

Introduction to Maharishi Vastu architecture

Following news of this published paper, Jon Lipman posted Introduction to Maharishi Vastu architecture. This lively 20 minute video introduces viewers to the main elements of Maharishi Vastu, relates MVA homeowners’ experiences and gives some lovely examples of MVA homes around the world.

Sustainable Living Center is unique in USA

April 26, 2010

Sustainable Living Center is unique in United States

Front page, Friday, April 23, 2010; published online: 4/26/2010

As ancient walls continue to crumble the world over, a few new ones went up yesterday in Iowa’s hippest farmtown.

The Sustainable Living Center at the Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield was the scene of a modern-day barnraising. Walls were tilted and roof trusses placed during the Earth Day event.

The structure uses “whole tree” post and beam techniques.

“It will set a new standard for green building in America by being completely off the grid with respect to electricity, heating and cooling, water and waste,” MUM director of media relations Ken Chawkin said.

Innovative Design of North Carolina conceived the building to meet the Living Building Challenge, a standard for sustainable design introduced at the 2006 Greenbuild Conference in Denver, Colo. The SLC is the first to combine that standard with those of LEED platinum certification, Building Biology standards, and Maharishi Vedic architecture guidelines.

The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design system was created by the U.S. Green Building Council and is an internationally recognized third-party certification. Vedic architecture is based on Hindu traditions emphasizing the use of natural materials such as wood, bricks, adobe, stucco and marble.

“There’s no other building like this going up in the nation, or in the world for that matter, that we know of,” said Mike Nicklas, SLC co-designer and president of Innovative Design.

The company has created over 4000 structures that use renewable energy solutions. Nicklas participated in the first Earth Day in 1970.

The SLC building is slated for university occupation this fall.

“It’s a building that teaches,” Chawkin said. The SLC will provide students with classrooms, workshop, meeting room, greenhouse, kitchen, research lab, recycling center and offices.

In addition to embodying sustainability, the SLC will allow students to interactively monitor performance and energy efficiency.

MUM Sustainable Living Department head David Fisher, who helped plan the building, said the SLC will be a living, evolving project.

“The building itself is an educational tool, not just a passive one like most classroom buildings,” Fisher said. “It will provide participatory education where students will be continually adding to or altering the building and grounds, as well as systematically checking its effectiveness.”

The SLC is designed to be completely off-grid. Construction uses all non-toxic materials from local sources, as defined by the Living Building Challenge requirements.

All energy will be provided from solar panels on the building and from an outside wind turbine. Rainwater catchment will be the complete source of the building’s water, with purification of drinking water via ultraviolet technology.

Wastewater will be treated on-site using a constructed wetland. Natural daylighting will illuminate the entire interior. Geothermal technology will assist with heating and cooling.

None of the planned systems in the building are new or experimental, according to construction manager Dal Loiselle, who said the SLC uses “state-of-the-shelf” technologies.

“This building proves that we can meet our environmental goals for our built environment with the materials, technologies, and green building protocols we already possess,” Loiselle said.

Sustainability is a major focus at MUM, which has long promoted techniques for living in harmony with nature. The school was founded in 1974 by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi as an international center for teaching Transcendental Meditation.

MUM filed a climate action plan to be 100 percent carbon-neutral by 2020 as part of the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment.

Fairfield Mayor Ed Malloy, named in 2009 by as one of the nation’s 15 greenest mayors — alongside those of New York, Seattle and San Francisco — said the SLC holds promise for a sustainable future.

“Our city will benefit enormously by having this building on the campus of MUM as a demonstration of a new standard of design,” Malloy said.

The Sustainable Living Center includes material donations from nationally recognized leaders in green building materials, including Gerdau AmeriSteel, Pittsburgh Corning and United States Gypsum Corporation, as well as Green Building Supply of Fairfield.

Yesterday’s event was part of MUM’s tenth annual EcoFair, which runs from April 30 to May 2 at the Argiro Student Center, 1000 N. Fourth St., Fairfield.

2 comment(s) found

Prgressive!: 4/27/2010

Fairfield,Iowa/Maharishi University of Management is a creative outpost ~ of a life worth living; healthy, in tune with nature, cutting edge and friendly. Thank you to all involved.

Small Town USA: 4/26/2010

Its great to see even the small towns and universities going full swing into this Green thing. Whoo Hoo!

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