The Transcendental Meditation technique, (or TM technique), is a form of mantra meditation introduced in India in 1955 by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
It is reported to be the most widely researched and one of the most widely practiced meditation techniques.
Taught in a standardized seven-step course by certified teachers, the technique involves the use of a sound or mantra and is practiced, while sitting comfortably, for 15-20 minutes, twice per day.
During the initial personal instruction session the student is given a specific sound, called a mantra. The sound given has no meaning assigned to it and is utilized as a thought in the meditation process. Use of this thought allows the individual’s attention to be directed naturally from an active style of functioning to a less active or quieter style of mental activity.
According to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, as the mind quiets down the practitioner can become aware that the thought itself is transcended, and can have the experience of what Maharishi calls the ‘source of the thought’, ‘pure awareness’ or ‘transcendental Being’.
One important distinction between TM and other practices involving mantras is the way the sound is used. In Transcendental Meditation the mantra has no associations and is not chanted – either verbally or mentally. It is a vehicle on which the attention rests.
Further information can be found here. Transcendental Meditation.