9 February 2000
Doug Henning, known to many Canadians as the Natural Law Party
incumbent for Rosedale (Toronto), has died in Los Angeles at age
52. It was during the 1993 federal election that Mr. Henning,
running on a platform heavily influenced by Transcendental
Meditation, rose to the front of the national consciousness.
"Canada needs to align itself with nature and gain the
support of nature," he said. Together with party leader Neil
Paterson, he expounded a vision of decreased crime, accidents,
and other hardships which would be brought about with the use of
yogic flyers -- devotees of TM who are able to bounce unusually
high in the air while in the lotus position. This novel approach
to politics did not gain the support of the electorate, and
despite running 231 candidates, the party came away empty handed.
In recent years, Mr. Henning was involved with a plan for a
theme park in Niagara Falls, Ontario called Veda Land which was
to inspire visitors with floating buildings.
My personal connections with Henning: I knew his cousin, and a
friend of mine had a fourth grade teacher whose husband roomed
with Henning during University (McMaster).
Before entering political life, Mr. Henning enjoyed a career
as a stage performer.