Children of the Night, movie director David Lynch expand work

LA Daily News AWARENESS

Children of the Night, movie director David Lynch expand work

Posted: 06/03/2011 09:59:06 PM PDT
Updated: 06/03/2011 10:16:19 PM PDT

David Lynch talks about the benefits of meditating. Transcendental Meditation is being used by teen victims of prostitution to ease their traumas. Academy Award-nominated director, acclaimed writer and producer David Lynch and his wife Emily; Children of the Night founder and president Dr. Lois Lee, motion picture actor Ben Foster, and world-renowned psychiatrist and author Norman Rosenthal were all on hand to talk about the benefits of meditation. (John McCoy/Staff Photographer)

Movie director David Lynch has teamed up with Children of the Night, the teen prostitute rescue organization, to raise awareness on a nationwide scale.

That means an expansion of services the nonprofit has been providing for more than three decades, and also the Transcendental Meditation instruction the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace has been bringing to the Van Nuys youth shelter for the past 14 months.

“Through our experience with the David Lynch Foundation and through our discovery that Children of the Night can operate without walls, we know we can take our award-winning programs to adolescents who are forced to live in out-of-home care throughout America,” founder and president Lois Lee said Friday during a news conference at the organization’s campus.

Lynch, who became involved after his wife, Emily, began volunteering at the shelter, explained what the practice of TM – which he’s done daily for 38 years – can do for troubled psyches.

“If you’re a stressed human being – and especially a traumatically stressed human being – once you transcend and experience this deepest level, it’s like somebody took a hammer and hit the bolt at the top of a boiler filled with stress, and it starts pouring out,” said the director of such psycho-surreal classics as “Blue Velvet” and “Mulholland Dr.”

“It’s such a a relief,” continued Lynch, whose six-year-old foundation has raised millions of dollars to teach TM techniques to some 150,000 people, mostly students, worldwide. “So, the girls got happier and less stressed and saw a brighter world outside, rather than a hell world.”

The adolescents Children of the Night tries to help bring an assortment of dire baggage to the facility’s doors. Abusive homes, brutal pimps, substance addictions, the very nature of what they’ve had to do to survive. Their reservoirs of self-esteem and emotional control can understandably be all but empty.

Click here to see photo gallery.

Lee said that all current residents – about 65 – are now in the TM program, which both she and Lynch pointed out is voluntary since, as he put it, “You can never force a person to meditate if they don’t want to.”

The peaceful, focusing effect of the practice aids the kids in concentrating on the educational efforts – which includes high school proficiency and GED preparation – at the core of the nonprofit’s life-improving plan.

“I’ve done the meditation for a year,” said a 17-year-old resident who asked not to be identified. “It helps me realize the goals that I actually want to achieve.

“If I get scared or nervous or frustrated, I don’t leave right off the bat now. It’s just brought me a well of calmness that nothing else has been able to provide.”

Lee said that meditating herself had a similar effect, enabling her to clarify strategies for her long-frustrated dream of expanding Children of the Night’s programs beyond L.A.

“When we went on the first meditation retreat with David’s people, I turned off my cellphone for the first time since 1984 and I left it off for the entire weekend,” laughed Lee, an intense, micro-managing type by nature. “In the early days of TM, I stopped screaming, my anger disappeared. And about five months later, it came to me how I could put my people on the road, hit every shelter in America and – with phones and the Internet – do everything we do here out there.

“I would have never been able to make that leap in my mind without the Transcendental Meditation,” Lee said.

(l-r) Norman Rosenthal, Ben Foster, Emily and David Lynch and Lois Lee. Transcendental Meditation is being used by teen victims of prostitution to ease their traums. Academy Award-nominated director, acclaimed writer and producer David Lynch and his wife Emily; Children of the Night founder and president Dr. Lois Lee, motion picture actor Ben Foster, and world-renowned psychiatrist and author Norman Rosenthal were all on hand to talk about the benefits of meditation. (John McCoy/Staff Photographer)

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Also see: Meditation Helps Homeless Children

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One Response to “Children of the Night, movie director David Lynch expand work”

  1. Transcending a Different Type of PTSD — Helping Children of the Night « The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] see: Children of the Night, movie director David Lynch expand work and Meditation Helps Homeless Children, and another Fox News Opinion piece by Dr. Rosenthal: Could […]

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