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Deepak Chopra

Deepak Chopra
Deepak Chopra

Speaking to the Microsoft PAC on January 15, 2011
Born October 22, 1946 (1946-10-22) (age 65)
New Delhi, India
Nationality American (born Indian)
Occupation physician, public speaker, writer
Spouse Rita Chopra
Children Mallika Chopra and Gotham Chopra
Parents Dr. (Col) K. L. Chopra, Pushpa Chopra
Website
deepakchopra.com

Deepak Chopra (Hindi: दीपक चोपड़ा; born October 22, 1946) is an Indian medical doctor, public speaker, and writer on subjects such as spirituality, Ayurveda and mind-body medicine.[1][2] Chopra began his career as an endocrinologist and later shifted his focus to alternative medicine.[3] Chopra now runs his own medical center, with a focus on mind-body connections. He is also a lecturer at the Update in Internal Medicine event, sponsored by Harvard Medical School's Department of Continuing Education and the Department of Medicine.

Chopra was a top assistant to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi before launching his own career[4] in the late 1980s by publishing self-help books on New Age spirituality and alternative medicine.[5]

A friend of Michael Jackson for 20 years, Chopra came to widespread public attention in July 2009 when he criticized the "cult of drug-pushing doctors, with their co-dependent relationships with addicted celebrities," saying he hoped Jackson's death, attributed to an overdose of a prescription drug, would be a call to action.[6]

Contents

Family history

Chopra was born in New Delhi, India.[1][7] His father, Krishan Chopra, M.D. (1919–2001) was a prominent Indian cardiologist. He was head of the department of medicine and cardiology at Mool Chand Khairati Ram Hospital, New Delhi, for over 25 years,[8] and a lieutenant in the British army.[1][7] His paternal grandfather was a sergeant in the British Army, who sought treatment for his heart condition from Ayurveda when it did not improve through medical means.[9]

Chopra's younger brother, Sanjiv, is a Professor of Medicine and Faculty Dean for Continuing Medical Education at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.[10]

Early life and education

As a young man, Chopra's desire was to become an actor or journalist, but he reports that he was inspired by a character in Arrowsmith by Sinclair Lewis and became a doctor.[11]

Chopra completed his primary education at St. Columba's School in New Delhi and graduated from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).[12] After immigrating to the US in 1968, Chopra began his clinical internship and residency training at Muhlenberg Hospital in Plainfield, New Jersey. He had residency terms at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Massachusetts, and at the University of Virginia Hospital.[7]

He earned his license to practice medicine in the state of Massachusetts in 1973[13] and received a California medical license in 2004.[14] Chopra is board-certified in internal medicine and specialized in endocrinology.[13] He is also a member of the American Medical Association (AMA),[15] a Fellow of the American College of Physicians[citation needed] and a member of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists.[citation needed]

Career

Chopra taught at the Tufts University and Boston University Schools of Medicine. He became Chief of Staff at the New England Memorial Hospital in Stoneham, Massachusetts,[7] later known as Boston Regional Medical Center, before establishing a private practice.[7]

After reading about the Transcendental Meditation technique, Chopra and his wife learned the practice in 1981, and two months later they went on to learn the advanced TM-Sidhi program.[16] Sources also describe a 1981 meeting between Chopra and Ayurvedic physician Brihaspati Dev Triguna in Delhi, India, in which Triguna advised Chopra to learn the TM technique.[12]

In 1985, Chopra met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who invited him to study Ayurveda.[12][17] In that same year, Chopra left his position at the New England Memorial Hospital and became the founding president of the American Association of Ayurvedic Medicine, and was later named medical director of the Maharishi Ayurveda Health Center for Stress Management and Behavioral Medicine.[12][17][18] He was initially the sole stockholder of Maharishi Ayurveda Products International, but divested after three months.[19] He has been called the TM movement's "poster boy" and "its leading Ayurvedic physician".[20] In 1989, the Maharishi awarded him with the title "Dhanvantari (Lord of Immortality), the keeper of perfect health for the world".[21]

In its May 22/29, 1991 issue, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published an article coauthored by Chopra: Letter from New Delhi: Maharishi Ayur-Veda: Modern Insights Into Ancient Medicine.[22] JAMA editors claimed that Chopra and his co-authors had financial interests in "Maharishi Vedic Medicine" products and services. In the August 14, 1991 edition of JAMA, the editors published a financial disclosure correction[23] and followed up on October 2, 1991 with a six-page Medical News and Perspectives exposé.[24] An article discussing this chain of events was authored by Andrew A. Skolnick in the Newsletter of the National Association of Science Writers.[25] A 1992 defamation lawsuit brought against the article's author and the editor of JAMA was dismissed in 1993.[26][27] Media reports published four years later saying that there had been a monetary settlement of the case were later withdrawn as untrue.[28]

By 1992, Chopra was serving on The National Institutes of Health Ad Hoc Panel on Alternative Medicine.[29] In 1993, Chopra became executive director of the Sharp Institute for Human Potential and Mind–Body Medicine with a $30,000 grant from the Office of Alternative Medicine in the National Institutes to study Ayurvedic medicine.[12] Chopra's institute also maintained affiliation with Sharp Healthcare, in San Diego.[17][18] That same year Chopra moved with his family to Southern California where he lives with his wife and near his two adult children, Gotham and Mallika.[12]

Chopra left the Transcendental Meditation movement in January 1994. According to his own account, Chopra was accused by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi of attempting to compete with the Maharishi's position as guru. [30] Todd Carroll said Chopra left the TM organization when it “became too stressful” and was a “hindrance to his success”.[5]

In 1995, Chopra was the recipient of the Toastmasters "International Top Five Outstanding Speakers" award.[31] In 1997 Chopra was given the Golden Gavel Award by Toastmasters.[32][dead link]

He was presented the Medal of the Presidency of the Italian Republic awarded by the Pio Manzu International Scientific Committee. In the citation committee chairman and former Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev referred to Chopra as "one of the most lucid and inspired philosophers of our time".[33] Esquire magazine designated him as one of the "top ten motivational speakers in the country".[11][31] He is the recipient of the 2002 Einstein Award through Albert Einstein College of Medicine in collaboration with the American Journal of Psychotherapy.

In 1996, Chopra parted company with the Sharp Institute. That same year, Chopra and neurologist David Simon, M.D., founded the Chopra Center for Wellbeing, which incorporated Ayurveda in its regimen, and was located in La Jolla, California. The University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine and American Medical Association have granted continuing medical education credits for some programs offered to physicians at the Chopra Center.[7][12][17] In 2002, Chopra and Simon relocated the Chopra Center to the grounds of La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, California, continuing to offer mind-body wellness programs, medical consultations, and instruction in meditation, yoga, and Ayurveda.

Chopra and Simon also revived an ancient mantra-based meditation practice, traveling to India to study the origins of this technique, known as Primordial Sound Meditation. This form of meditation is now taught at the Chopra Center and by certified instructors who receive their training through Chopra Center University.

Since 2000 Chopra has sat as an advisor for the National Ayurvedic Medical Association.[34]

In 2005 Chopra was made a Senior Scientist at The Gallup Organization.[35] He currently serves as an Adjunct Professor of Executive Programs at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.[36]

He is also a weekly columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, a regular contributor to The Washington Post's "On Faith" section and a prolific contributor to The Huffington Post.[37][38][39]

Dr. Chopra is also a monthly contributor for The Times of India Speaking Tree.[40][41]

In 2006, Chopra launched Virgin Comics LLC with his son Gotham Chopra and entrepreneur Richard Branson. The company's purpose is to "spread peace and awareness through comics and trading cards that display traditional Kabalistic characters and stories."[7] Chopra was awarded the 2006 Ellis Island Medal of Honor by the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations.[42][43]

He was the recipient in 2009 of the Oceana Award.[44] Also in 2009, Chopra established the Chopra Foundation with a mission to advance the cause of mind/body spiritual healing, education, and research through fundraising for selected projects.[45] In 2010 the Chopra Foundation sponsored the first Sages and Scientists Symposium with prominent scientists philosophers and artists from around the world.[46][dead link]

In 2010, Chopra received the Cinequest Life of a Maverick Award for his collaborations with filmmakers Shekhar Kapur and his son, Gotham Chopra. The award goes to "inspirational individuals who touch the world of film while their greater lives exemplify the Maverick spirit."[11]

Chopra is heavily featured in UniGlobe Entertainment's cancer docudrama titled 1 a Minute talking about mind, body, spirit and the mystery of life and death.[47] The documentary is directed by actress Namrata Singh Gujral and also features cancer survivors Olivia Newton-John, Diahann Carroll, Melissa Etheridge, Mumtaz and Jaclyn Smith.

He received the 2010 Humanitarian Starlite Award "for his global force of human empowerment, well-being and for bringing light to the world."[48] Chopra is the recipient of the 2010 GOI Peace Award.[49]

In September 2010, Chopra published a criticism of Stephen Hawking's book The Grand Design.[50]

In February 2011 the Chopra Foundation sponsored the second annual Sages and Scientists Symposium with eminent physicists, geneticists and social scientists from around the world.[51]

In conjunction with Menas Kafatos, Ph.D and Rudolph E. Tanzi, Ph.D. Chopra published a paper in the Journal of Cosmology Vol. 14 April-May 2011, titled "How Consciousness Becomes the Physical Universe".[52]

In June 2011 Deepak Chopra wrote an op-ed for the American Medical Association Journal of Ethics titled "Medicine’s Great Divide—The View from the Alternative Side".[53]

In the summer of 2011 Deepak Chopra was ranked #1 influencer of all Indians in the world, both resident and non-resident.[54]

In October of 2011 Chopra wrote a critical review of Richard Dawkins' book The Magic of Reality in the Huffington Post

Criticism

According to a 2008 article in Time magazine, Chopra is “a magnet for criticism” primarily from those involved in science and medicine. Some critics say that Chopra creates a false sense of hope in sick individuals which may keep them away from effective medical care. The Time article summarized Chopra's reception and popularity thus: "Of all the Asian gurus…, Chopra has arguably been the most successful at erasing apparent differences between East and West by packaging Eastern mystique in credible Western garb. …His quest to construct a pleasing and seamless model of the universe tends to jump to easy conclusions and to spackle over problematic gaps and inconsistencies in the ideas he presents — is obvious to all but his most starry-eyed fans. But grousing about such crimes — as many do — does little to explain his enormous popularity. Chopra is as rich as he is today not because he has been dishonest with anyone, but because his basic message — that love, health and happiness are possible, that mystery is real and that the universe is ultimately a friendly and benevolent place where orthodoxies old and new can meet and make peace with one another — is one that he wants to believe in just as sincerely as his readers do."[55][56]

Chopra was sued for plagiarism by Robert Sapolsky for using a stress endocrine chart without proper attribution, after the publication of Chopra’s book, Ageless Body, Timeless Mind. An out-of-court settlement resulted in Chopra attributing material that was researched by Sapolsky.[56] Chopra acknowledges that his thought has been inspired by Jiddu Krishnamurti and others.[5][57]

In 1996, The Weekly Standard of London published an article which accused Chopra of "plagiarism and soliciting a prostitute"; however, Chopra sued and the paper withdrew its statements and published an apology.[58]

Chopra has been criticized for his frequent references to the relationship of quantum mechanics to healing processes, a connection that has drawn skepticism from some physicists who say it can be considered as contributing to the general confusion in the popular press regarding quantum measurement, decoherence and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle.[59] In 1998, Chopra was awarded the satirical Ig Nobel Prize in physics for "his unique interpretation of quantum physics as it applies to life, liberty, and the pursuit of economic happiness".[60] According to the book, Skeptics Dictionary, Chopra's "mind-body claims get even murkier as he tries to connect Ayurveda with quantum physics.”[5] Chopra also participated in the Channel 4 (UK) documentary The Enemies of Reason, where, when interviewed by scientist Richard Dawkins, he admitted that the term "quantum theory" was being used as a metaphor and that it has little to do with the actual quantum theory in physics.[61]

In August 2005, Chopra wrote a series of articles on the creation-evolution controversy and Intelligent design which were criticized by science writer Michael Shermer, founder of The Skeptics Society.[62][63][64]

In March 2010, Chopra and Jean Houston debated Sam Harris and Michael Shermer at Caltech on the question "Does God Have a Future?" Shermer and Harris criticized Chopra's use of scientific terminology to expound unrelated spiritual concepts.[65] Harris has said that Chopra is "the very definition of what we mean by pseudoscience".[65]

In April 2010, Hindu American Foundation co-founder Aseem Shukla, on a Washington Post-sponsored blog on faith and religion, criticized Chopra for suggesting that yoga did not have origins in Hinduism but is an older Indian spiritual tradition which predated Hinduism.[66] Later on, Chopra explained yoga as rooted in "consciousness alone" which is a universal, non-sectarian eternal wisdom of life expounded by Vedic rishis long before historic Hinduism ever arose. He further accused Aseem Shukla of having a "fundamentalist agenda". Dr. Shukla in a rejoinder titled "Dr. Chopra: Honor thy heritage" termed Deepak Chopra as an exponent of the art of "How to Deconstruct, Repackage and Sell Hindu Philosophy Without Calling it Hindu!" and to the allegation of "fundamentalist" he responded by accusing Dr. Chopra of raising the "bogey of communalism" in frustration to divert the argument.[67][68]

Chopra addresses these scientific criticisms in his 2011 book War of the Worldviews - Science vs Spirituality, coauthored with CalTech Professor of Physics Leonard Mlodinow. In it he explains his respect and admiration for the scientific method while pointing out its limitations and the need for an expanded science that includes the reality and investigation of the observer, or consciousness.[69] [70]

Message

According to Business Week, one of Chopra's main messages is that by ridding oneself of negative emotions and developing intuition by listening to signals from the body, health can be improved. According to Chopra, slowing down or reversing the aging of the mind through his methods can increase one's lifespan up to the age of 120 years. As a result of his writings and lectures in this area, he is thought by some to be "one of the pre-eminent leaders of the mind-body-spirit movement".[11]

Publications

Chopra has written more than 65 books with 19 New York Times bestsellers. His books have been translated into 35 languages and sold more than 20 million copies worldwide.[29] His book, Peace Is the Way won the Quill Awards and The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of your Life received the Nautilus Award. FINS - Wall Street Journal, mentioned his book, “The Soul of Leadership”, as one of five best business books of 2011 to read for your career. Chopra is represented in the United States by the literary agency, Trident Media Group.[71] His first book, Creating Health, is credited with helping to create initial, international recognition for Chopra.[7]

Music CDs/audio books

  • 1986 Total Health: The Rediscovery of Ayurveda ASIN B-000-K06QY-4
  • 1994 Journey Into Healing ISBN 0-679-44089-5
  • 1994 Power Talk!:The Power of the Human Paradox with Anthony Robbins ISBN 1-55927-267-8
  • 1996 Crescent Moon: Prose Poems of Rabindranath Tagore ISBN 1-878424-20-3
  • 1998 Synchrodestiny ISBN 1-905953-04-6
  • 1997 Transformation of Mind: Deepak Chopra, Christopher Franke, ASIN: B000003KW4
  • 1998 A Gift of Love: Love poems inspired by Rumi ASIN B-000-GRQX8-A
  • 2000 All About God: A Dialogue Between Neale Donald Walsch and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-735-X
  • 2000 Wisdom of the Sufi: A Dialogue Between Hidayat Inayat-Kahn and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-734-1
  • 2000 The Spiritual Journey : A Dialogue Between Richard Moss, M.D., and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-739-2
  • 2000 Spiritual Insights into the Genius of Leonardo da Vinci: A Dialogue Between Michael J. Gelb, M.D., and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-738-4
  • 2000 The Art of Everyday Ecstasy: A Dialogue Between Margot Anand and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-737-6
  • 2000 The Conscious Universe ISBN 1-56170-744-9
  • 2000 Pathways to God: A Dialogue Between Joan Borysenko, Ph.D. and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-736-8
  • 2000 Unleash Your Potential with Marianne Williamson and Sarah Ban Breathnach ISBN 0-671-77180-9
  • 2000 The Path to Enlightenment: Insights into Buddhism / A Dialogue Between Robert Thurman, Ph.D., and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-732-5
  • 2001 Healing the Planet: A Dialogue Between Marianne Williamson and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-743-0
  • 2001 Self-Coaching Secrets for Success ISBN 1-56170-827-5
  • 2001 Awakening the Goddesses Within: Deepak Chopra, M.D., Presents Agapi Stassinopoulos ISBN 1-56170-837-2
  • 2001 Tell Me a Story: A Dialogue Between Lisa Suhay and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-874-7
  • 2001 Sacred Sexuality: A Dialogue Between Felice Dunas and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-823-2
  • 2001 Relationships As a Bridge to Divine Love : A Dialogue Between Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D., and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-742-2
  • 2001 Training the Mind, Healing the Body ASIN B-000-BGT8K-6
  • 2001 Soul of Healing Meditations – A Simple Approach to Growing Younger ASIN B-000-05TZS-K
  • 2001 The Higher Self ISBN 0-7435-0921-8
  • 2001 The New Physics of Healing ISBN 1-56455-919-X
  • 2001 Science And Soul: The Survival of Consciousness After Death, A Dialogue Between Gary Schwartz and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-822-4
  • 2002 The Yoga of Love and Devotion with Shree Ma ISBN 1-56170-838-0
  • 2002 Integrating The Masculine And Feminine In The Spiritual Traditions Of Judaism and Vedanta: A Dialogue Between Rabbi Shmuley Boteach and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-824-0
  • 2002 Quantum Physics of Quantum Healing: A Dialogue with Amit Goswami, Ph.D., and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-920-4
  • 2002 The Evolving Human: A Dialogue Between Jean Houston, Ph.D., and Deepak Chopa ISBN 1-56170-916-6
  • 2002 Rituals As a Path to the Divine: A Dialogue Between Stephen Huyler, Ph.D., and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-841-0
  • 2002 Healing Your Relationships : A Dialogue Between Kenny and Julia Loggins and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-840-2
  • 2002 The Soul and Relationship: A Dialogue Between Shakti Gawain and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-56170-917-4
  • 2002 Yoga as a Form of Meditation with Yogi Amrit Desai ISBN 1-56170-839-9
  • 2002 A Gift of Love II: A Musical Valentine to Tagore ASIN B-000-06IZP-E
  • 2003 Magical Mind, Magical Body ISBN 0-7435-3013-6
  • 2003 Journey to the Boundless ISBN 0-7435-3016-0
  • 2004 Chakra Balancing: Body, Mind, and Soul ASIN B-000-667GN-W
  • 2004 Sacred Verses, Healing Sounds, Volumes I and II: The Bhagavad Gita, Hymns of the Rig Veda ISBN 1-878-42478-5
  • 2004 The Ultimate Deepak Chopra Collection 20 CDs ASIN B-000-BGV45-I
  • 2004 Whispers with Eckhart Tolle, Jack Canfield and Don Miguel Ruiz ISBN 1-559-61722-5
  • 2005 The Power of Intuition ISBN 1-401-90622-2
  • 2005 Living Beyond Miracleswith Wayne Dyer ISBN 1-878-42479-3
  • 2005 The Cosmic Mind and Submanifest Order of Being ISBN 1-401-90450-5
  • 2005 Living Without Limits ISBN 1-878-42496-3
  • 2005 An Ancient Magical Prayer ISBN 1-401-90447-5
  • 2006 Escaping the Prison of the Intellect ISBN 1-878-42456-4
  • 2007 Creating Your World the Way You Really Want It To Be with Wayne Dyer ISBN 1-602-52748-2
  • 2007 Meditations for Healing: A Dialogue Between Dharma Singh Khalsa, M.D. and Deepak Chopra ISBN 1-561-70922-0
  • 2008 Whispers of Spirit & Happiness with Don Miguel Ruiz ISBN 1-559-61945-7
  • 2008 The Soul of Healing Affirmations A-Z Guide to Reprogramming the Software of the Soul ASIN B-001-2SAT7-S
  • 2008 Grow Younger Live Longer Dave Stewart and Deepak Chopra ASIN: B0012GMXFQ
  • 2009 The Soul Of Healing Meditations ASIN B-000-05TZS-K
  • 2011 Stress Free with Deepak Chopra (Meditations) ASIN: B004JU157O
  • 2011 The Secret of Healing: Meditations for Transformation and Higher Consciousness ASIN: B004K35UWG

Videos

  • 1995 Seven Spiritual Laws of Success
  • 1995 The Way of the Wizard[72]
  • 2003 God and Buddha - a dialog
  • 2004 Soul of Healing - Body, Mind, and Soul Vol. 1
  • 2008 The Love Guru
  • 2010 1 a Minute

Other published work

  • 2008 Introduction to Kim Feinberg's A Mother's Legacy[73]
  • Chopra co-authored Ask the Kabala with Mike 'Zappy' Zapolin and Alys Yablon, which is a set of 22 cards, each one representing a story or character from the Old Testament and a life lesson based on that story from a Kabalistic perspective.[74]
  • Chopra co-authored a blog in 2009 with Richard Barrett titled Can Values Save the Economy?[75]
  • Journal of Cosmology Vol. 14 April-May 2011, "How Consciousness Becomes the Physical Universe." with Menas Kafatos, Ph.D, Professor Chapman University and Rudolph E. Tanzi, Ph.D., Professor of Neurology Harvard University [76]
  • Chopra is a co-author of 2011 Consciousness and the Universe: Quantum Physics, Evolution, Brain & Mind along with Roger Penrose, Stuart Hameroff, Henry Stapp

See also

References

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  2. ^ "EnlightenNext Magazine web site". Enlightennext.org. http://www.enlightennext.org/magazine/bios/deepak-chopra.asp. Retrieved 2011-02-18. 
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  4. ^ Woo, Elaine (February 6, 2008). "OBITUARIES; Maharishi Mahesh Yogi; Guru brought meditation West". Los Angeles Times: p. B.7. http://articles.latimes.com/2008/feb/06/local/me-maharishi06/5. 
  5. ^ a b c d Skeptics Dictionary, Robert Todd Carroll, John Wiley and Sons, Inc, copyright 2003, pp 45–48 [1]
  6. ^ Posner, Gerald. Deepak Chopra: How Michael Jackson Could Have Been Saved, The Daily Beast, July 2, 2009, p. 4
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  9. ^ Posted by map mag on March 31, 2010 (2010-03-31). "international dreamer – deepak chopra, March 31, 2010". Streeteditors.com. http://www.streeteditors.com/2010/03/31/international-dreamer-deepak-chopra/. Retrieved 2011-02-18. 
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  17. ^ a b c d Burton, Rosamund. "Peace Seeker". Nova Magazine. http://www.novamagazine.com.au/article_archive/06_04_Peace%20seeker.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-30. 
  18. ^ a b Redwood, Daniel D.C.. "Quantum Healing". HealthWorld Online. http://www.healthy.net/scr/interview.asp?Id=167. Retrieved 2008-11-30. 
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  20. ^ Baxter, Bronte (April 17, 2008). "Where Have All the Flower Children Gone? Part One". The Canadian. 
  21. ^ O'Mathúna, Dónal (2007-01-01). Alternative Medicine. Zondervan. p. 96. ISBN 978-0-310-26999-1. 
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  23. ^ "Erratum in: JAMA 1991 Aug 14". JAMA 266 (6): 798. 
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  30. ^ The Maharishi Years – The Untold Story: Recollections of a Former Disciple, 13 February 2008.
  31. ^ a b "Bigg Speak web site". Bigspeak.com. 2000-03-21. http://www.bigspeak.com/deepak-chopra.html. Retrieved 2011-02-18. 
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Further reading

External links


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