The Indian guru who introduced the Beatles to Transcendental Meditation passed away at his home in the Netherlands on Tuesday
Credit: Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Image

(FROM AP) — Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the Indian guru who founded the technique of Transcendental Meditation and was best known as a spiritual advisor to the Beatles during a brief period in the 1960s, died at his home in the Netherlands on Tuesday. He was 91 and a spokesman said he passed away due to ”natural causes, his age.”

From the 1950s on, the meditation specialist was something of a rock star in his own field, touring the world to teach his method, which involves sitting still and silent for 20 minutes twice every day. But it was his union with the Beatles that turned the Maharishi into a pop cultural icon. John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr’s much-publicized (and much-debated) trip to India to study with the Maharishi remains perhaps the most familiar touchstone in understanding the Eastern-tinged songs of the band’s late-middle period — though the relationship between the Beatles and the guru did not last very long. The author of several books and the founder of a university in Iowa, the Maharishi also is said to have instructed Mike Love, Donovan, Mia Farrow, Andy Kaufman, Doug Henning, the Rolling Stones, and Clint Eastwood. He appeared on the cover of Time magazine in 1975 under the headline, ”Meditation: The Answer to all Your Problems?” (AP via Google News)