Filmmaker David Lynch Talks Transcendental Meditation

David Lynch is most famous for his award-winning surrealist films: Eraserhead, Blue Velvet, Mulholland Drive and the TV series Twin Peaks, to name a few. But the acclaimed filmmaker is also humanitarian and proponent of transcendental meditation—in fact, he’s been meditating twice a day for the past 37 years. Currently, he’s launching the David Lynch Foundation’s Operation Warrior Wellness program, which will work to provide meditative training for ten thousand veterans with PTSD. He spoke to the Huffington Post about his new endeavor.

“Eighteen soldiers commit suicide every day,” Lynch said in the interview, “and they say over 30 percent of the soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. Legal drugs, illegal drugs and alcohol can mask the problems to a degree, but Transcendental Meditation will dissolve that traumatic stress from the ground floor up, and the soldiers will have their lives back again. All they have to do is learn this technique and stay regular in the practice. I really believe it will save them, their families and their friendships.”

Lynch has said that he was not only inspired by the numbers of veterans who commit suicide or are diagnosed with PTSD, but also by the “inhumanity” of some of the current treatments for PTSD—he cited the practice of showing veterans violent images until they become “numb” to them as an example. Meditation has taught him and will teach others, he says, how to “look within” for happiness.

He pointed to brain research as proof that TM really “works”—neuroimaging shows that meditation can help people use all fields of their brain at once in something called “total brain coherence.” Lynch says, “That coherence gets more and more permanent as you continue meditating. [It leads you to] higher states of consciousness, and, ultimately, to the full potential of the human being: enlightenment. It’s every human being’s birthright to enjoy enlightenment.”

“This is the experience that is missing from life today. We can’t wish ourselves there, we can’t imagine ourselves there, take advantage of this technique and have that experience every day and watch your life get better and better and better. You don’t even have to believe it will work, and it will still work.”

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