Dr Ramesh Manocha discusses the negative impact of the commercialisation of meditation in this excerpt from his thesis.
Another important retarding force impacting on meditation research relates to the fact that meditation has become an important commodity and many of its leading lights have made their fortunes by selling books, CDs, courses and qualifications on or about meditation. Virtually none of these highly commercialised, mass market products discusses or describes how to achieve the mental silence experience. Might this be because its creators are unable to deliver that experience? A vague definition of meditation has commercial advantages since it allows a wide variety of practices to be marketed under an attractive banner without obligating its proponents to deliver much more than a sense of rest, relaxation or even just a an odd sensation, if anything at all. The New Age industry, culturally handicapped academics and a popular media eager for content appear to have unwittingly cooperated to promote a fundamentally inadequate, but much more marketable, idea of meditation.