Posts Tagged ‘Change Begins Within’

Digital storyteller Sharad Kharé speaks with David Lynch Foundation executive director Bob Roth

November 26, 2015

Canadian digital storyteller Sharad Kharé was invited to attend the David Lynch Foundation‘s star-studded Change Begins Within benefit concert in New York City earlier this month. He wrote a wonderful review and also managed to interview the Foundation’s enthusiastic executive director, Bob Roth.

“I usually attend these events for media coverage with my cameras, but earlier in the week I got a chance to get on a quick call with Bob Roth who personally said to come as a guest and enjoy the evening. For that, I am truly honored and grateful.”

Sharad gave us permission to share the lovely video he produced and posted on his HUFFPOST vlog.

Sharad Kharé has a Masters in Communications and lives in Vancouver, British Columbia. His background in television and social media production made him a natural choice as the current curator for TEDxVancouver. Find out more about Sharad at http://sharadkhare.ca

New: Sharad Kharé @kharecom interviews Bob Roth @meditationbob, CEO @LynchFoundation, on TM. This second interview was published January 30, 2019 on Thrive Global.

@JerrySeinfeld talks about @TMmeditation at David @LynchFoundation #ChangeBeginsWithin

January 1, 2014

On Tuesday, December 3rd, at the David Lynch Foundation‘s 5th Annual Change Begins Within Gala at the Conrad Hotel in New York City, Jerry Seinfeld took the stage to open the event. We were waiting for this to come out on YouTube. Jerry is absolutely brilliant! He opens with a funny diversion about Amazon and drones, and then segues to the main topic.

Jerry shares how he started Transcendental Meditation in college and has been practicing it for 41 years. But he reveals for the first time that he had only been meditating once a day instead of the twice-a-day instruction. Still, it was because of TM, he says, that he managed to keep it together during the nine years he was producing his successful hit show Seinfeld.

 “When I was doing the TV series in which I was the star of the show, the executive producer, the head writer, casting and editing, for 22 to 24 episodes on network television—not cable! Network—for 9 years. Okay? That’s a lot of work. And I’m a regular guy, pretty much. You know, I’m not one of these crazy people that has endless, boundless energy. I’m just a normal guy. But that was not a normal situation to be in. And so what I would do is every day when everybody would have lunch I would do TM [Transcendental Meditation] and then while we’d go back to work and then I would eat while I was working because I had missed lunch. But that is how I survived the 9 years, it was that 20 minutes in the middle of the day would save me.”

George Shapiro, Jerry’s manager and fellow meditator, had written into Jerry’s contract that he was to not do interviews or be disturbed during lunch hours, when he would go to his trailer during the taping of the Seinfeld show. Now we know why. What we didn’t know was that he was only doing it once a day, at that time. And look what he accomplished!

Jerry’s handling a lot these days, touring on weekends, producing his internet show, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, raising 3 young kids, and yet has the energy to enjoy it all, at 60, when he was thinking he should be slowing down. Meditating twice a day has transformed his life. Here’s the part where he mentions Bob Roth reminding him to do his morning meditation, at 6 mins, 54 secs, and what happened as a result.

By the way, David Lynch never missed his twice-daily TM during the over 40 years he’s been meditating. He also used to do his meditation (second), in private, on film sets when everyone else went to lunch.

Bob Roth interviewed Jerry Seinfeld for the new Sirius XM radio show on TM starting January 2014. Jerry is his first guest. David Lynch will also be on an episode of the show, as will other high-profile celebrities and expert guests.

New York is really the hub of American consciousness—media, finance, fashion, food, arts and entertainment. TM has created quite the buzz in the city. It’s a more peaceful and friendlier place to be in these days. 2014 holds much promise. May it bring us greater joy and success. Happy New Year!

Related stories:
George Stephanopoulos interviews Jerry Seinfeld & Bob Roth on the importance of Transcendental Meditation for PTSD
Renowned (TM) meditation teacher Bob Roth featured on The Third Metric and HuffPost Live
Alec Baldwin asks Jerry Seinfeld about learning Transcendental Meditation on Here’s The Thing
Style.com: David Lynch and Italo Zucchelli on their creativity and Transcendental Meditation
David Lynch on Esquire Network, How I Rock It, talking about Transcendental Meditation
David Lynch on meditation in the NewStatesman: Heaven is a place on earth
David Lynch speaks with Alan Colmes about his 16-country tour film Meditation Creativity Peace
Jerry Seinfeld and Howard Stern share stories about their Transcendental Meditation practice

Celebrating Paul Horn and his Contribution to Jazz, World Music, Meditation and Spirituality

March 20, 2013

Paul Horn, Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and David Lynch attend the press conference for the David Lynch Foundation “Change Begins Within” Benefit Concert at Radio City Music Hall on April 3, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images)

It was St. Patrick’s Day on Sunday, March 17, 2013. It was also Paul Horn’s 83rd birthday, and I had sent around an email about it with links to Paul’s participation (:55–1:22) in the Change Begins Within Press Conference Highlights from Radio City Music Hall in NYC, April 3, 2009, and the concert the following night. Here’s an overview of the Change Begins Within Press Conference and musical Paul McCartney & Ringo Starr Concert Highlights. This is a great collection of concert clips and interviews, and DLF school clips: Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr Collaborate for Meditation in Schools. An edited version was shown on PBS. Someone posted these excerpts: Paul McCartney/Ringo Starr “Change Begins Within” Concert (39:39).

A Symphony of SilenceI also read an interview with Paul Horn in the first chapter of A Symphony of Silence: An Enlightened Vision by George A. Ellis. Paul spoke about his philosophy of music and improvisation, how he communicated musically with a killer whale at an aquarium in Victoria, BC, and in Hawaii. He also spoke about his own spiritual quest, how he started Transcendental Meditation and met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. He discussed how he was invited to join a course in India with Maharishi and his experiences there. George Ellis also asked Paul questions about his becoming a TM teacher in those early days, and also playing his flute in the Taj Mahal. It’s a great interview, and a wonderful way to start the book! It got me hooked.

Rolf Erickson, editor-in-chief of Enlightenment, The Transcendental Meditation Magazine, emailed to say there’s an excerpt of the interview with Paul Horn in the latest issue, number 11, called The Music of Meditation. In it, George cites a beautiful quote from Paul’s own book, Inside Paul Horn: The Spiritual Odyssey of a Universal Traveler, highlighted at the top of the article: “We are traveling in historical time, from the present to the distant past. We are traveling inwardly as well, through the music of meditation.” Rolf also contributed an article about George Ellis, Sharing the Symphony of Silence, describing what he had accomplished as a TM teacher and entrepreneur, and his heartfelt tribute to Maharishi with this book. Visit http://asymphonyofsilence.com.

Here’s an earlier post from a few years ago: Iconic Jazz Musician Paul Horn Performs Inside MUM’s Golden Dome in Historic Concert May 15. The concert was in the context of a Symposium on Music and Consciousness during which Paul Horn was honored for his lifelong contribution to music, as a jazz musician and Father of New Age Music; and consciousness, as a longtime teacher of Maharishi’s Transcendental Meditation technique. Paul taught thousands of people to meditate in the 70’s. Here is Paul’s great talk at that Symposium: Improvisation: The Ultimate Art of Self-Expression — Paul Horn at MUM. Click here to see all of the Lecture and Performance Videos including Q & A.

During his visit to MUM and Fairfield, Jo Ann Gesner interviewed Paul for an article, Paul Horn: Improvisation from the Inside Out, published in Enlightenment Magazine’s 6th issue with a beautiful photo of Paul and his wife, Ann Mortifee, taken in Café Paradiso.

This video, Inside Paul Horn, is an overview of Paul Horn’s career. Originally titled, Inside Paul Horn Special Edition, it includes clips from Story of a Jazz Musician – David Wolper Presents, and was uploaded on Jan 14, 2011 by annmortifee. It seems to have been taken down now but you can see the full 3-part film here.

For more on the music of Paul Horn and Ann Mortifee, visit http://paulhornmusic.com and http://annmortifee.com.

Listen to Monica Hadley interview George A. Ellis on Writer’s Voices – 20130712 and how his book Symphony of Silence came about.

See my Haiku With My Muse, Sali, inspired by Paul Horn.

See Snapshots: Paul Horn in Conversation: History & Influences.

Paul Horn died June 29, 2014. There were many memorial articles about the jazz flutist, composer and creator of new age music who also became a teacher of  Maharishi’s Transcendental Meditation at his ashram in Rishikesh, India. He taught thousands to meditate in the United States and returned to make a film about Maharishi when the Beatles happened to be there to learn more about TM at his ashram. The Guardian announced his passing: Paul Horn, father of new age music, dies aged 84, then published a more detailed obituary.

THE REMARKABLE DAVID LYNCH FOUNDATION — written by Norman Zierold for Healthy Referral

June 8, 2012

Posted 27 January 2012 in Healthy Referral Newspaper

THE REMARKABLE DAVID LYNCH FOUNDATION

It’s no secret that problems abound in our society, but two areas that quickly come to mind are major sources of national stress—at-risk school children and veterans returning from wars abroad with post-traumatic stress.

Enter iconic American filmmaker David Lynch, director of TV’s groundbreaking Twin Peaks, and feature films that include Eraserhead, Elephant Man, Blue Velvet, Mulholland Drive, The Straight Story, and most recently, Inland Empire. The United Kingdom’s highly reputed Guardian has dubbed Lynch “the most important film-maker of the current era,” but an illustrious career has not impeded his concern for the needy.

Mind you, many individuals and organizations have stepped forward in the troubled areas of our society. Much has been done, yet even more remains to be done. What is his modality of choice to help? Meditation, he declares, and specifically Transcendental Meditation, or TM, which is neither a religion nor a philosophy, and therefore requires no change of lifestyle.

Transcendental Meditation is a simple, easily learned technique, practiced for 20 minutes twice daily while sitting comfortably in a chair with eyes closed. This quiet time provides the mind and body with a unique state of “restful alertness” which allows stress and fatigue to be released in a natural way, resulting in better health, greater energy, more clarity of mind, and overall enhancement of the joy of life. It utilizes the natural tendency of the mind to go to a field of greater happiness, hence is basically effortless, differing thereby from all other meditation techniques, which invariably involve either concentration or contemplation, modalities that tend to keep the mind on the surface level of thought and so impede the transcending process.

John Hagelin, Ph.D., world-renowned quantum physicist (“What The Bleep Do We Know!?” and “The Secret”) and recipient of the coveted Kilby Award in physics, describes Transcendental Meditation as “a systematic means to turn the attention powerfully within, to experience and explore deeper levels of mind, quieter levels of human awareness, a state of rest for the body deeper than sleep, where deep-seated stress is dissolved, providing an effective prevention and treatment for stress-related illness.”

Over 600 scientific studies have been conducted on Transcendental Meditation at 250 medical schools and universities in over 30 countries to verify its wide range of benefits for the individual and society. Most notably, the U.S. National Institutes of Health, or NIH, funded in recent decades $26 million in grants to study the effects of TM practice on high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, obesity, and heart disease. Subjects for research have been readily available because the TM technique has now been taught to six million people in over 120 countries.

The timeless knowledge of TM derives from the Vedic heritage of India, the world’s oldest system of knowledge. Veda means truth, or knowledge, and this tradition provides knowledge about many areas of life. For example, Yoga comes from the Vedic tradition, as does Ayurveda, the world’s most ancient system of health care, and Sthapatya Veda, knowledge about building in accord with Natural Law. The knowledge of Transcendental Meditation was revived in our era by the revered sage Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, launched, in 1957, a worldwide movement to make it available on every continent. Maharishi first came to the United States in 1959, and on various occasions thereafter, to oversee the progress of the local TM movement.

Why did David Lynch take up the TM practice? Well, he just couldn’t think of anything better to do. Just kidding. Lynch not only writes, produces, and directs his own films, but also composes popular music, and paints stunning pictures that are exhibited in major art galleries. And oh, yes, crowning a plethora of other avocations, he recently opened his own nightclub in Paris.

As for Transcendental Meditation, his sister first brought it to his attention. “My sister called, and she had started TM,” he reminisces. “There was something in her voice—less stress and more happiness, a certain upbeat lilt. ‘I gotta have that,’ I said to myself. When I actually started, it was like boom, as if a cable had been cut and the elevator plunged right down into pure consciousness.

“I have been ‘diving within’ through the Transcendental Meditation technique for over 30 years now,” he continues. “It has changed my life, my world, allowing me to release stress that was causing fear and anxiety, opening the door to heightened creativity and bliss.”

“Not long ago, when I heard about the crippling levels of stress and violence in the lives of children today, about the need for armed guards to patrol school corridors, and about widespread use of prescription drugs with deleterious side effects, I became concerned about what this was doing to the health of these children and their ability to learn.”

“Discussing the matter with a friend, the thought came that in today’s turbulent world all school kids should have a class period to begin and end the school day where they can dive within and experience the field of silence, the transcendental level of life, which is an enormous reservoir of energy and intelligence within all of us.”

To help at-risk students, the director established the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace—and promptly made hefty donations to give it a jump-start.

Since then the DLF has helped fund “Quiet Time” programs, which are always voluntary, around the world, teaching TM to over 250,000 children in the United States and Latin America, the Middle East, Europe, and Africa. The US schools can be found in more than a dozen states.

Progress was made in the financial area by a benefit concert given at New York’s Radio City Music Hall and featuring such renowned meditating artists as Beatles Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, legendary singer/songwriter Donovan, Mike Love of the Beach Boys, flute virtuoso Paul Horn, Sheryl Crow, Moby, Eddie Vedder, Ben Harper, Russell Simmons, co-founder of the pioneering hip-hop label Def Jam, and Jerry Seinfeld in a winning stand-up comic skit. Since a huge number of schools around the world remain on a waiting list for Quiet Time programs, plans are underway for future benefit concerts in different venues. Watch News conference Highlights from the day before the concert, and Watch Event Highlights, which include clips of David Lynch interviewing Paul, Ringo, Sheryl, Eddie, and excerpts from that amazing magical evening. Check here for other DLF featured past events.

Transcendental Meditation in Education

Dr. Sanford Nidich, professor of education and physiology at Maharishi University of Management, has been working with at-risk adolescents in U.S. schools and reports on a study conducted at the University of Connecticut involving 106 secondary school students from three public schools, primarily from lower-income, minority populations. “Meditating students,” he relates, showed significant reductions in anxiety, emotional problems, and hyperactivity, and improved overall mental health after an average of four months compared to controls.”

“Something must be done to help today’s youth deal with the enormous amount of stress in their lives,” says Dr. Robert Colbert, professor at the University of Connecticut and co-author of the study. “This study shows that something can help immediately—and it is easy to implement in any school setting.

Two more recent studies out last year, also funded by the David Lynch Foundation, showed TM improved standardized academic achievement and effectively lowered record stress levels in students.

The study, published in the journal Education, reported students who practiced the Transcendental Meditation program showed significant increases in math and English scale scores and performance level scores over a one-year period. Forty-one percent of the meditating students showed a gain of at least one performance level in math compared to 15.0% of the non-meditating controls.

The latest study published in the Journal of Instructional Psychology found the Transcendental Meditation technique significantly decreased psychological distress in at-risk racial and ethnic minority public school students by 36 percent over 4 months compared to controls. The study also found significant decreases in trait anxiety and depressive symptoms.

In the area of students with learning disabilities, one study, published in the 2009 issue of the peer-reviewed Current Issues in Education, followed a group of 10 middle-school students with ADHD who were practicing the Transcendental Meditation technique twice a day at school. After three months, researchers found over 50% reduction in stress and anxiety, and improvements in ADHD behavior regulation.

“The effect was much greater than we expected,” says Dr. Sarina Grosswald, Ed.D., a George Washington University-trained cognitive learning specialist and lead researcher on the study. “The children also showed improvements in attention, working memory, and organization.” The study was funded by grants from the Abramson Family Foundation and the David Lynch Foundation.

A follow-up study, also funded by the David Lynch Foundation, came out last year. This random-assignment controlled study conducted over a period of 6 months in an independent school for children with language-based learning disabilities in Washington, DC, found improved brain functioning, decreased symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, (ADHD), and improved language-based skills among ADHD students practicing the Transcendental Meditation technique. The paper, ADHD, Brain Functioning, and Transcendental Meditation Practice, was published in Mind & Brain, The Journal of Psychiatry.

At the Ideal Academy Public Charter School in Washington, D.C., students from the 5th through 12th grades now practice the TM/Quiet Time program. “It changed the whole climate of the school, says principal Dr. George Rutherford, a highly regarded D.C. educator. “It was just beautiful. The academic achievement has gone up, and behavioral problems have gone down. I could never work in a school that doesn’t have the TM/Quiet Time program.”

One student at the Ideal Academy reports, “I notice I haven’t been mad for a while, since I learned TM. I used to get in fights and talk to people behind their back. And it helps me to not get distracted.”

A student at the Tucson, Arizona, Museum of Art School was struggling in math, but now says, “I’m doing really good in there, and my behavior’s been a lot better.” One of the students at the Kingsbury School in Washington, D.C., states that just two weeks after practicing TM twice a day the nightmares he was having stopped, allowing him to sleep much better and so avoid the fatigue that usually followed during the day.

“I have had the pleasure of meeting many students who are “diving within” and experiencing Consciousness-Based Education,” sums up DLF founder David Lynch. “These students are all unique individuals, very much themselves. They are amazing, self-sufficient, wide-awake, energetic, blissful, creative, powerfully intelligent and peaceful human beings. Meeting these students, for me, was the proof that Consciousness-Based Education is a profoundly good thing for our schools and for our world.”

Principal James Dierke agrees. The 2008 National Association of Secondary School Principals—National Middle School Principal of the Year, says, “Stress is the number one enemy of public education, especially in inner-city schools. It creates tension, violence, and compromises the cognitive and psychological capacity of students to learn and grow. The TM/Quiet Time program is the most powerful, effective program I have come across in my 39 years as a public school educator for addressing this problem. It is nourishing children and providing them an immensely valuable tool for life. It is saving lives.”

TM for Veterans: Operation Warrior Wellness

While the DLF’s work with at-risk children got into full gear, founder David Lynch was given the staggering statistics from the Veterans Administration showing that more soldiers are dying from the trauma of combat incurred in Iraq and Afghanistan than at the hands of enemy combatants. Over 500,000 veterans have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress, or PTS, since 2001, with 18 veterans committing suicide each day.

To help meet this challenging situation, the David Lynch Foundation launched Operation Warrior Wellness, a national outreach to help 10,000 war veterans suffering from PTS by teaching them Transcendental Meditation. A December 2010 press conference and follow-up fund-raiser Gala Event at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York was supported by noted film directors Clint Eastwood and Martin Scorsese, fashion maven Donna Karan, pop music mogul Russell Simmons, and yet another Russell, versatile actor/comedian Russell Brand, plus “America’s Doctor,” Dr. Mehmet Oz.

A year later on December 2, 2011 the David Lynch Foundation launched Operation Warrior Wellness in Los Angeles with a global press conference at the Beverly Hills Hotel where David Lynch presented a check for one million dollars for Veterans to learn Transcendental Meditation. The 3rd Annual Change Begins Within Gala Event took place at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.Ellen DeGeneres opened the evening and then turned the proceedings over to host Russell Brand. Photos can be seen on the David Lynch Foundation photo stream.

Combatants from past and present conflicts delivered testimonials of their devastating war experiences and told of how TM gave them a new lease on life. World War II pilot Jerry Yellin spoke eloquently of the toll that extensive bombing raids against Japan had on his nervous system so that for three decades after the end of the war he felt no satisfaction from anything he did. “At 51,” he recounted, “I took up TM and only then did I finally find peace.”

Vietnam vet Dan Burks gave a moving account of the mental scars he carried after a battle in which he killed Vietnamese soldiers and lost many of his own comrades. “PTS is a wound,” he concluded. “It takes your life away, just like losing a limb. But guess what? You can get rid of that wound. My life, after the discovery of Transcendental Meditation, was like the difference between heaven and hell.”

Finally, David George, 23, a former infantry soldier, told of the trauma he experienced not only in Iraq, but also on returning home, where long ago battles still raged deep within his system. “Happily,” he said, “I found TM and that cleared the air and I could tell where I was going. I felt this warm, groovy feeling. It just keeps getting better and better.”

Veterans with PTS showed a 50 percent reduction in their symptoms after just eight weeks of practicing the stress-reducing Transcendental Meditation technique, according to a pilot study published in June 2011 in the scientific journal Military Medicine. The study found that Transcendental Meditation produced significant reductions in stress and depression and marked improvements in relationships and overall quality of life.

The paper’s senior researcher, Norman Rosenthal, M.D., is clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University Medical School and director of research at Capital Clinical Research Associates in Rockville, Maryland. “These young men were in extreme distress as a direct result of trauma suffered during combat,” he affirms, “and the simple and effortless Transcendental Meditation technique literally transformed their lives.”

The findings were similar to those from a randomly controlled study of Vietnam veterans conducted by researchers at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in 1985. In that study, published in the Journal of Counseling and Development, after three months of twice-daily TM practice, the veterans had fewer symptoms than those receiving conventional psychotherapy of the day. In fact, most of the TM-treated subjects required no further treatment.

“The soldiers are truly suffering,” affirms David Lynch. “No one knows what they’ve been through. No one knows what they’ve done, what they’ve experienced, what they’ve seen, and their lives in many cases are a true nightmare. That’s why we want to offer them Transcendental Meditation. It’s a beautiful thing for the human being. It’s a big stress-buster, and when these soldiers get this simple effortless technique, they’re going to get their lives back again. It’s not hocus-pocus. It’s going to save lives, and help not only the soldiers, but all the families who are suffering, and their friendships as well.”

For the already noted Operation Warrior Wellness benefit at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, Clint Eastwood, best known for playing violent, hardened characters on-screen, sent a video in which he stated his strong support of Transcendental Meditation. “I’ve been using it for almost 40 years now,” he declared. “It’s a great tool to combat stress, especially considering the stress our men and women in the armed forces are going through. There’s enough studies out there that show TM is something that can benefit everybody.”

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Norman Zierold is the author of a bevy of books on Hollywood, including The Child Stars, The Moguls, Garbo, and Sex Goddesses of the Silent Screen, as well as two true-crime stories—Little Charley Ross: The Story of America’s First Kidnapping for Ransom, and Three Sisters in Black, recipient of a Special Edgar Allan Poe Award from the Mystery Writers of America. He has also published articles in a plethora of magazines, ranging from New York Magazine, McCall’s, and Popular Mechanics to Good Housekeeping, Variety, and Reader’s Digest.

REFERENCES:

David Lynch Foundation http://www.davidlynchfoundation.org

Operation Warrior Wellness http://www.operationwarriorwellness.org

The Transcendental Meditation program http://tm.org

Ask the Doctors: Specialists answer your questions about TM and health http://askthedoctors.com

ADHD, the Mind and the TM technique http://www.adhd-tm.org

Maharishi University of Management http://www.mum.edu

If read in the UK, use this for The Transcendental Meditation Program: http://www.t-m.org.uk

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Related article by Norman Zierold: Embody: focus on TM: Iconic Filmmaker David Lynch has a viable solution to a pressing problem.

And enjoy this article about Norman: The Chronicle of Higher Education: Notes From Academe: The Spokesman Who Kept Calling.

Here is an excellent Huffington Post interview with David Lynch that came out two years later, Dec 9, 2014: Interview With David Lynch: His Mission to Change the World Through Meditation.

Bob Roth, Executive Director, David Lynch Foundation, Discusses Transcendental Meditation On Free Your Mind Projects Radio Show

November 30, 2011

Transcendental Meditation

It helps Veterans deal with PTSD. It helps students. It helps teachers.  It helps parents. It helps Hollywood’s biggest stars, and now it’s helping the hosts of the Free Your Mind Projects. It’s Transcendental Meditation. Listen as Bob Roth, Executive Director of the David Lynch Foundation joins us to discuss TM, AND the scientific data that supports its effectiveness. Kathleen Piche’ from the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health joins us as guest host as she does each week and explains why TM can be a GREAT example of prevention and early intervention for mental health issues AND just an all around stress reliever! Find out more about the David Lynch Foundation and TM, and check out there upcoming event information in Los Angeles at LACMA on December 3rd at www.changebeginswithin.orgwww.changebeginswithin.org

Also see: Russell Brand Does Stand-Up for Transcendental Meditation and What do Stephen Collins, Ellen DeGeneres, Russell Brand, Russell Simmons, David Lynch and Oprah have in common?

Listen to another FYMP show: Free Your Mind Project Show Discusses the David Lynch Foundation’s Commitment to 10,000 Vets.


The Huffington Post: Jeanne Ball: David Lynch Talks About the Benefits of Meditation

December 13, 2010
Writer for the David Lynch Foundation,
Meditation Teacher for 25 Years
Posted: December 13, 2010 05:49 PM

David Lynch Talks About the Benefits of Meditation

“Change Begins Within,” a benefit event featuring David Lynch, Clint Eastwood, Russell Brand, Katy Perry, Dr. Mehmet Oz and Candy Crowley, takes place tonight, Dec. 13 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. You can watch it LIVE beginning at 9 p.m. EST.

We know David Lynch for his award-winning films — “Mulholland Drive” was recently voted movie of the decade by the LA Film Critics Association. Seems like every night there’s a “Twin Peaks” party going on somewhere. Lynch is also known as an artist, musician, philanthropist and proponent of meditation. He has been meditating twice a day for 37 years. His interests in meditation have led him to India and the Far East, as well as university EEG labs where brain researchers are exploring meditation’s effects on the brain.

I caught up with him amid his preparations for the David Lynch Foundation‘s upcoming benefit, happening tonight, to provide meditation training to 10,000 veterans with PTSD.

Click here to read the interview.

WATCH David Lynch speak about consciousness and creativity:

Paul McCartney’s son says he’s ready to follow in dad’s footsteps

November 5, 2009

Paul McCartney’s son says he’s ready to follow in dad’s footsteps

November 4, 5:29 AMBeatles ExaminerSteve Marinucci

JamesMcCartneyJames McCartney, son of former Beatle Paul McCartney, will play his American debut concert Nov. 14 at Maharishi University in Fairfield, Iowa. The younger McCartney will perform during the fourth annual David Lynch “Change Begins Within” Weekend, Nov. 13 to 16. Also performing will be Donovan, who joined the Beatles in Rishikesh. Blueser Laura Dawn and her group The Little Death will fill out the bill.

The concert comes a little more than 40 years after James’ father, Paul McCartney, traveled to Rishikesh, India, to study Transcendental Meditation with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

“James has a way with melody and a set of pipes, which are more than a match for his dad’s,” a recent article in the UK Sun declared.

In a statement issued for the concert, he said this is something he’s been working towards for a while.                                                                               

“I have been playing music since I was nine and writing along the way. I met my band about a year ago. Producer David Kahne introduced us — and my dad, Paul, helped.”

McCartney says his father played a big role in helping him develop his musical talent. “My dad taught me guitar when I was nine. I play a Fender Stratocaster, which Carl Perkins gave me from the seventies, and a Gibson Les Paul that my dad gave me — heart red.

“The band consists of me, 32, on guitar, piano, and vocals; Brian Johnson, 28, on drums; Steven Bayley, 32, on guitar, synthesizers, toy piano, and harmonies; and Charles Turner, 27, on bass and harmonies, McCartney states. “I am from London and Sussex, Brian and Charlie are from Allerton, Liverpool, where my dad grew up, and Steve is from Birmingham. Brian and Charlie used to be in the Dead 60s and Steve used to be in The Open.”

The group is touring and also in the midst of recording an album. “We are mixing our album in Hog Hill Studio, Sussex. The words on the album refer to spirituality, love, family, trying to sort out one’s own life, and many other things. I have written the songs over a ten-year period,” he says.

“The music was inspired by the Beatles, Nirvana, the Cure, PJ Harvey, Radiohead — and all good music. It is basically rock ‘n ‘roll, clean sounding, and vocal.”

Just like his dad.

Video on the David Lynch Foundation

September 22, 2009

How David’s Foundation Started

This 3 minute video premiered at the “Change Begins Within” benefit concert at Radio City Music Hall in New York City on April 4th, 2009. The video provides a compelling introduction to the purpose and goal of the David Lynch Foundation, which is to provide scholarships for one million at-risk youth to meditate—students who are struggling to learn and live in an atmosphere of intense stress, disease, and violence.


Time Out Abu Dhabi: Transcendental Meditation

September 3, 2009

Transcendental meditation
Dismissed by cynics, applauded by medics, transcendental meditation is nothing if not controversial

‘It was a great gift,’ said Sir Paul McCartney earlier this year. ‘For me it came at a time when we were looking for some stability towards the end of the crazy ’60s. It’s a lifelong gift that we can call on any time.’

At a press conference for Change Begins Within (an initiative that hopes to get one million children involved in transcendental meditation, or TM, put together by Twin Peaks director David Lynch), Macca’s fond enthusiasm was somewhat at odds with the general malaise that soured the Beatles’ meditation retreat back in 1968. After the fab four followed Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (the man credited with introducing the Indian-Himalayan meditation technique to the West) to Rishikesh, India, John Lennon dismissed him as a charlatan. Though he apologised for his youthful outbursts later, it seemed impossible that a Beatle-tarnished reputation could ever be wiped clean.

Not so. By the mid-’70s some 40,000 Americans per month were reportedly signing up for classes, many of whom found the simple, schedule-friendly techniques so beneficial that they practise it to this day. David Lynch, a practitioner since 1973, has said that a mere fortnight of twice-daily practice was all it took to reduce the angers and anxieties that controlled his life at the time. ‘Those negative things started lifting,’ he said recently. ‘It sounds strange, but I appreciated and enjoyed the doing of things more.’ It’s not just the ageing hippies who talk it up, either. Empirical evaluations have shown that the technique can have an effect on human physiology, reducing stress levels significantly and even having some positive effect on heart diseases. Even the science bods are recommending it now.

‘It’s practised by people of all levels of intelligence, of all ages, cultures and religions,’ explains Surendra Kumar, a teacher at the Creative Intelligence Consultancy in Dubai. ‘There are many reasons they come to us. Some just want to learn, others come for health reasons and many just want to be happy in life.’ Surendra is willing to travel to teach keen students – a kind of TM delivery service, if you will. In fact, he recently finished a TM course in Abu Dhabi, which was hailed a success by its participants.

A misconception commonly held is that TM has religious connotations – possibly cultish in nature. Again, this was an unfortunate by-product of the Maharishi’s association with The Beatles: George Harrison, in particular, was an enthusiastic advocate of Indian religions, and many observers jumped to conclusions. ‘It has nothing to do with religion,’ says Surendra with the air of a man who has had to deal with this line of questioning before. ‘It’s a peaceful mental activity that takes the mind to deeper levels of the thinking process. Though it was only introduced to the Western world 50 years ago, it’s as old as life itself.’ It is estimated that six million students have studied TM in that short space of time, a number that puts it slightly beyond the realms of cult status.

But, why TM rather than other forms of meditation? Put simply: people seem to find it easier. Whereas other techniques require you to blank the mind (often the largest hurdle for many students), or focus on a single aspect, TM uses a repetitive technique – a series of vocal vibrations or sounds, often with no meaning – to lull the mind into a peaceful state, ‘transcending’ the regular thoughts and conundrums that bombard us from minute to minute.

Unfortunately, the mumbo jumbo associated with TM is hard to avoid. Wondering what the effects of ‘bliss consciousness’ and ‘self-referral intelligence’ might be, we spoke to Arif Dawood, a participant on the recent Abu Dhabi course. ‘I’ve done several types of meditation and heard about TM a long time ago,’ he explains. ‘I would say it’s one of the easiest to practise and, although it’s too early to notice any major benefits, it certainly makes me feel very relaxed.’

If it’s so easy, why bother finding a teacher? Well, just as you might benefit from instruction in the gym, an experienced teacher can help shape the techniques to suit your situation. Whether you come to it as a student of relaxation, for health reasons, or even via an out-of-control Beatles obsession, one thing quickly becomes apparent: transcendental meditation may be as old as the hills, but in this frenetic modern world where instant results are imperative, you might find it’s a lifelong gift you wouldn’t wish to return.

For more information on arranging a TM course in Abu Dhabi, call the Creative Intelligence Consultancy on 050 207 0347 or email info@tm.ae. A website will soon be up and running at http://www.tm.ae

Time Out Abu Dhabi 30 August 2009

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3 Comments:
Posted by: Dr. Jean Tobin on 01 Sep ‘ 09 at 03:54
Thank you for this article highlighting the benefits of Transcendental Meditation. I’ve read quite a few articles on the subject and your treatment is more precise and fair than most. I wanted to share with your readers a summary of the research on TM. TM distinguishes itself not only in how easy it is to practice, when learned from a qualified teacher, (TM.org) but also in how effective it is when compared with other mental techniques. There has been so much rigorous research validating the benefits of TM in all areas of life. The majority of these studies compared TM to other practices or control groups. 350 peer-reviewed research studies were conducted on over 10,000 subjects who were practicing the TM technique. These studies included numerous randomized controlled trials, along with eight meta-analyses of 597 separate studies on the effects of meditation. The studies were conducted at Harvard Medical School, Yale Medical School, Stanford Medical School, University of PA, University of Kentucky, and more than 200 other independent institutions, and were done by 360 scientists from 29 countries. Learning TM was the best decision I ever made. It has improved my life in every possible way. Thanks again for bringing your readers attention to an important topic.

Posted by: kennyji on 31 Aug ‘ 09 at 18:37
This has to be the most intelligently written article so far assessing the value of the Transcendental Meditation technique for the average individual that I’ve come across. It sifts out the misunderstandings of a confused past and enlightens its readers to the practical benefits of this simple but effective technique for living a less stressed and more productive fulfilling lifestyle. Thank you.

Posted by: Archie on 31 Aug ‘ 09 at 15:21
I love TM and have been practicing it twice a day for over 35 years. It has enriched my life in ways that I never could have expected but would never want to have had to do without. Yes, it has been a lifelong gift that I wouldn’t return for anything in the world. Thank you, Maharishi.


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