Taking a break from shooting his new film , the elusively enigmatic filmmaker David Lynch spent much of October touring universities around the nation to promote transcendental meditation as a means for students to enhance their intellect and well-being, and through this personal growth to collectively move the world to a mission of peace and understanding. The tour, Consciousness, Creativity and the Brain, kicked off the establishment of the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace (www.davidlynchfoundation.org), and sought to encourage and aid schools and universities to establish transcendental meditation courses.
As a director whose films tend to work as much on a sub-conscious level as on a conscious one, Lynch spoke of his films and how transcendental mediation has helped his growth as a filmmaker and a person.
Of course, many in the crowd at Yale University were more interested in talking about films than inner and world peace. Lynch deftly combined the two as he offered advice to aspiring filmmakers.
"When I was a student and started out making films, I was filled with anxieties, fears, anger and doubts. It’s a very frightening thing being in film school because which students are going to go forward and find success in their filmmaking and which ones are going to drop out and become accountants. Transcendental meditation takes away these fears and anxieties and allows you to tap into pure consciousness, pure creativity."
Lynch also spoke of his new film in production, Inland Empire, starring Laura Dern and Jeremy Irons, which is shooting with a Sony PD150. "I discovered DV making small experimental films for my Web site and fell in love with the medium because it’s so lightweight. It gives you so much freedom with a much smaller crew [and] longer takes and you’re able to do things you can’t do with a film camera," Lynch explained, adding wryly, "It has this thing called‘automatic focus’ that is great. It makes film cameras seem very absurd. DV is not up to the quality of film right now but it’s getting closer and closer. We’ve done tests for Inland Empire and it looks very good."
While for much of the night Lynch spoke of the bliss he’s attained and the dissolving of negativity and anger through transcendental meditation, his serene demeanor cracked when he spoke of the golden rule of a director, one that he obviously had to battle throughout his career.
"Never, ever, ever give up final cut," he said. "After you’ve worked so hard on a film if anyone has the power to change it, it’s horrible. Life’s too short to die that death."