Some of us remember the Natural Law Party--the political wing of TM--spending a huge amount of money in an attempt to elect candidates in the 1993 Canadian federal election. Their meditation--and money--had about as much influence on voters in Canada as it had had on voters in other countries' elections, and it worked about as well as "yogic flying" worked in defying the law of gravity.
According to this review in Maclean's by Brian D. Johnson:
He was the original guru pop star. Made famous by the Beatles in the 1960s, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was the godfather of the Transcendental Meditation movement, known as TM. He inspired such acolytes as author Deepak Chopra and filmmaker David Lynch, and remained TM’s figurehead until his death in 2008 at the age of 94. The Maharishi was once dubbed "the giggling guru." But now it appears he may have been giggling all the way to the bank. David Wants to Fly, a new documentary shown last week at Toronto’s Hot Docs festival, offers compelling evidence that the Maharishi’s empire of enlightenment is more devoted to shaking down its followers and amassing wealth than transcending the material world.