Greetings from Utopia Park

Greetings from Utopia Park


In this engrossing, provocative, and intimate memoir, a young journalist reflects on her childhood in the heartland, growing up in an increasingly isolated meditation community in the 1980s and ’90s—a fascinating, disturbing look at a fringe culture and its true believers.

When Claire Hoffman’s alcoholic father abandons his family, his desperate wife, Liz, tells five-year-old Claire and her seven-year-old brother, Stacey, that they are going to heaven—Iowa—to live in Maharishi’s national headquarters for Heaven on Earth. For Claire’s mother, Transcendental Meditation—the Maharishi’s method of meditation and his approach to living the fullest possible life—was a salvo that promised world peace and enlightenment just as their family fell apart.

At first this secluded utopia offers warmth and support, and makes these outsiders feel calm, secure, and connected to the world. At the Maharishi School, Claire learns Maharishi’s philosophy for living and meditates with her class. With the promise of peace and enlightenment constantly on the horizon, every day is infused with magic and meaning. But as Claire and Stacey mature, their adolescent skepticism kicks in, drawing them away from the community and into delinquency and drugs. To save herself, Claire moves to California with her father and breaks from Maharishi completely. After a decade of working in journalism and academia, the challenges of adulthood propel her back to Iowa, where she reexamines her spiritual upbringing and tries to reconnect with the magic of her childhood.

Greetings from Utopia Park takes us deep into this complex, unusual world, illuminating its joys and comforts, and its disturbing problems. While there is no utopia on earth, Hoffman reveals, there are noble goals worth striving for: believing in belief, inner peace, and a firm understanding that there is a larger fabric of the universe to which we all belong.

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  • 001 Greetings From Utopia Park

    Duración: 14s

  • 002 Preface

    Duración: 06min

  • 003 Chapter 01

    Duración: 33min

  • 004 Chapter 02

    Duración: 31min

  • 005 Chapter 03

    Duración: 21min

  • 006 Chapter 04

    Duración: 16min

  • 007 Chapter 05

    Duración: 26min

  • 008 Chapter 06

    Duración: 29min

  • 009 Chapter 07

    Duración: 17min

  • 010 Chapter 08

    Duración: 36min

  • 011 Chapter 09

    Duración: 25min

  • 012 Chapter 10

    Duración: 28min

  • 013 Chapter 11

    Duración: 26min

  • 014 Chapter 12

    Duración: 25min

  • 015 Chapter 13

    Duración: 13min

  • 016 Chapter 14

    Duración: 35min

  • 017 Chapter 15

    Duración: 27min

  • 018 Chapter 16

    Duración: 31min

  • 019 Chapter 17

    Duración: 14min

  • 020 Chapter 18

    Duración: 24min

  • 021 Epilogue

    Duración: 06min

  • 022 Credits

    Duración: 31s

  • sample

    Duración: 01min