Rupert Murdoch is meditating.
The News Corp. CEO, famous for his ruthless media conglomerate and hard-nosed fights with adversaries, told his followers on Twitter that he’s been experimenting with transcendental meditation, a form of deep relaxation that was introduced in India in 1955, gained worldwide popularity in the 1960s and ’70s, and has more recently picked up adherents among celebrities and business leaders.
Trying to learn transcendental meditation. Everyone recommends, not that easy to get started, but said to improve everything!—
Rupert Murdoch (@rupertmurdoch) April 21, 2013
Followers of transcendental meditation spend 15 to 20 minutes twice a day silently repeating a one-to-three-syllable mantra in search of deeper consciousness. Its famous adherents have ranged from The Beatles to Oprah Winfrey.
Murdoch joins a long list of business leaders who have taken up transcendental meditation. Among them:
Notably, former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, a Buddhist, practiced Zen meditation rather than transcendental meditation.
Murdoch turned 82 years old last month. Despite his age and frequent scandals, he remains the CEO of News Corp., which will be renamed 21st Century Fox later this year, when the company spins off its newspaper businesses. His resilience, particularly following the phone-hacking scandal that threatened to undo the whole company, is the subject of a new Businessweek cover story.
The mogul’s image has softened in the past year as Murdoch joined Twitter and turned out to have a knack for social media, more recently adding Tumblr to the mix. (That’s where the image above is from.) His personal messages, though frequently brash, have helped humanize a much-caricatured figure with a villainous reputation in popular culture.
Having two days off with some colleagues and family in Australian bush. Feels like spiritual home. Peace and rest.—
Rupert Murdoch (@rupertmurdoch) April 06, 2013
On recent trips to Asia, he tweeted often about seeking tranquility and was frequently photographed, by his own staff, in spiritual repose.