What Is Total Knowledge?

Total Knowledge of Natural Law means directly experiencing the full range of the creativity and intelligence inherent in the universe.
The phrase Total Knowledge of Natural Law (or Total Knowledge) is how Maharishi defined the basis of all streams of knowledge. Life is structured in layers of creation, displaying orderly principles of nature which humans have observed, pondered, quantified, and studied since ancient times. 

We usually think of knowledge in terms of intellectual disciplines such as mathematics, physics, biology, and so on. Maharishi pointed out that what has generally been missing in education is the direct study of the intelligence (i.e., the orderliness and creativity) at the basis of life and its relationship with our own intelligence.
The universe seems to never run out of creativity and intelligence; therefore it appears there is an infinite, sustainable supply. Modern theoretical physics calls this source the Unified Field. This field of creative intelligence is continuously creating and managing every bit of life—from the most abstract levels beyond quantum mechanics to the most mind-boggling expanse of the universe, and all the in-between realities we take for granted. This is what Maharishi meant by the field of Total Knowledge—knowledge of the whole range of life. The Big Picture.

"The value of Total Knowledge cannot be overestimated, because the unfoldment of infinite creativity through Total Knowledge is the basis to fulfill all desires and realize all possibilities in daily life..." 
– Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

Why is this significant, aside from a philosophical exercise? 

Since we are living, conscious beings, we are obviously part of nature which means we are connected to that reservoir of creative intelligence. We could live our lives unaware of that fact. After all, we naturally grow in the expression of our innate intelligence and knowledge throughout our lifetime. But can we more fully comprehend, and even experience directly, that field of Total Knowledge? 

The ancient Vedic tradition, in a vast body of literature, describes the field of creative intelligence, the Unified Field, and the connection with human consciousness. The Transcendental Meditation technique as taught by Maharishi, is a simple, natural and effortless mental technique of exploring the Unified Field; going beyond the surface levels of awareness and experiencing increasingly subtle levels of consciousness, and then experiencing—knowing— the source of our creative intelligence. The very core of our consciousness is, in fact, the Unified Field, one and the same as nature’s reservoir of creative intelligence. This is why Maharishi often described the TM technique and its advanced programs as “Technologies of the Unified Field."

Again, why is this significant? When we know something, we embody the principles of that field of knowledge and can apply that information for practical value or enjoyment. For example, someone who has studied music is a musician and they enrich society through the expression of their knowledge and skill. 
When we know the Big Picture—the basis of the whole range of life—we become a Knower of Reality (this deserves capital letters because it is so significant). Such a person embodies the total potential of nature’s creative intelligence, and spontaneously expresses this knowledge in every aspect of life. This is our definition of Enlightenment. This is the purpose of Maharishi University of Enlightenment.