I've told you for a while now that I was going to post about gettting to hear David Lynch speak. Well, this is the post you've been waiting for.
On November 7th, David Lynch came to the University of Washington campus to talk about Transcendental Meditation (TM). Luckily, the entire night was not merely dedicated to this new-age babble.
The lecture actually opened with a question and answer period with the director himself. This allowed all of us fanboys to get those questions out of systems.
In fact, the first douche who asked a question asked something like, "How has being an Eagle Scout affected your life?"
If you're a fan, like me, then you know that when Wild at Heart premiered at Cannes in 1990, the director's bio read "Eagle Scout, Missoula, Montana". This, of course, has led to much mythologizing about the man himself, his normalcy, and his artwork. There's a great article over at the BFI with the same name. [article]
Listening to him talk is truly riveting. He waves his hands like a cross between a hypnotist and witch doctor. When asked where he came up with his idea for the Black Lodge in Twin Peaks, he recounts the moment with attention to odd details. He and his editor had been editing the pilot all day in August and he went out to the parking lot. It was probably around 63 degrees (see what I mean about odd details) and the roofs of the cars were still warm. He put his hands on one of them and "it just came to [him]." That's what I love about Davy. He has no qualms with the fact that he imagined something and its his duty to make it happen. It doesn't matter if it has meaning or fits in with whatever type of story he's trying to tell.
Then he talked a little about TM and how it allows you to think bigger thoughts. Then he made an analogy to ideas being like fish and if you can think bigger ones, you can catch bigger ones.
The next part of the seminar included a physicist and a neurologist telling me why I should meditate. Apparently, there's this thing that is everything, and if you meditate, you get a better sense of what that thing is. Whether its a lepton or electromagnetism, its all that thing, man. And you can think about it. Whoa.
So to prove their point, they hooked this kid up to an EKG and forced him to meditate. "Meditate like you mean it," they chided. "No, really, use your mind," they yelled. And lo, and behold, his brain waves all started matching up (or something) and it was like that thing that's everything was in the room, and I saw him, dude. He was like Mohammad or Jesus or Buddha or Love. And, like Mr. Burns after his treatment, the whole lecture hall was full of peace.
Ok so those last two pragraphs are a little fabricated (not the part about the EKG, though), but really, if this shit is as great as the claim, then wouldn't they want to teach everyone the methods for FREE? If everyone meditating really could bring peace to the world (as they claim) would they really have to charge $5,000 to learn how to do it?
Speaking of the claims they made, I was pretty OK with them saying that TM could help drug addicts or people with ADD. But when they started talking about Senegal and how the crime rate went from 90% to close to 0%, my disbelief kicked in. Here's an article about that far-fetched claim. [article]
I did like everyone's conviction to their cause. I like that they want to open a College for Peace in Washington, D.C. I just didn't like feeling like I was trying to be sold something.
The lecture ended with David taking more audience questions but relating his answers more to TM. I should have brought my Blue Velvet screenplay or Lynch on Lynch book with me, but I didn't think I'd actually get to meet him. He stood around and signed autographs and talked to people after the lecture and I was kicking myself. I did manage to shake his hand and say something to the effect of, "Fire Walk with Me is the best film ever."
Remember how I said they gave out an audio CD of the event? Well, apparently, its a DVD. So I can't burn it and post it. However, if you live in the Seattle area, UWTV will be broadcasting the session here in Seattle December 1st-4th. Sorry, I don't have the times.
On the count of 3, everyone think about peace.
1 . . .
2 . . .