Monday, August 01, 2005

Eccentric film king does transcendental meditation

David Lynch is a genius and a groundbreaking filmmaker. Though I admit not being intimate with his entire movie canon, it's tough to deny the quirky brilliance and haunting reflections contained within Wild at Heart, Blue Velvet, Lost Highway, Dune (also one of my favorite novels), Mulholland Drive and a number of other critically lauded and fan-adored cult favorites. It's also easy to imagine David Lynch the man as a real fucking weirdo (the type of person I like a lot but tend to avoid for fear of causing an interdimensional, paranormal rift, but I digress.)

So I went to get something to eat at this vegetarian place down the street the other day — as Satisfied75 describes it, "a breeding ground for eco-terrorists" — and I was pleasantly surprised by the panoply of books, business cards, bulletins and newsletters in the back dedicated to new age mysticism, spiritual healing and other fanatical, hippie mumbo jumbo. Needless to say, your ol opportunistic pal Marty viewed some of this info as an excellent resource for blog fodder, story topics and new adventures in which to immerse myself for the good of magic. More on this in a moment.

So I picked up and read the inimitable Whole Life Times, LA's so-called magazine of the conscious community. Surprisingly, there are some interesting tidbits in it with a few good contributors. The cover story, as a matter of fact, is a piece on David Lynch's 30-year history of involvement with the practice of transcendental meditation (TM) and its effects on his art, health, etc. I've included a link to the article below.

Whole Living Motherfucker

It's nothing earth-shattering, but I thought the following snippet was worth reproducing, for its empowering and optimistic implications on any artist:

With a knowing grin, Lynch shrugs off the idea that artists must suffer in order to create.

“Maharashi laughs at it,” he says. “It’s so absurd. Yes, you’ve got to understand suffering, but if you’re really miserable you can’t create, and it’s like, what’s the point? When I think about van Gogh, I feel that he was really happy when he was painting… All negativity does is cripple you.”

Maybe there is nothing wrong with a life of joy after all. I think it's also worth noting that Lynch is involved in what seems like a semi-serious effort to get TM accepted by the mainstream as a valuable exercise for spiritual awareness, mental health and creativity. He's taking it as far as trying to get this pastime of the monkish accepted into the curriculum of our nation's fine public schools. Zodspeed, David.

Nevertheless, I also found some information at the granola parlor on a new religion that could open some new fortean astral portals for me. ECKANKAR, the practice of soul traveling, has a depot in my neighborhood. They have an open house this week, which will undoubtedly be attended by an incognito Mr. McFriend. Look for a review later this week.

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