Posted by: bobroth | April 4, 2010

FROM THE “WHO’DA THUNK IT?” ARCHIVES

Bobby Von Trapp does Stowe, Vermont

After returning yesterday to NYC from a successful week-long sojourn for the David Lynch Foundation in London, I flew today to Burlington, Vermont, for a meeting Monday morning with the headmaster of a military school who is interested in the Foundation’s Quiet Time program for his students. On our way, we stopped in Stowe, Vermont, a majestically scenic winter ski resort town in the northern part of the state… Stowe is also the very famous home of the Von Trapp Family who fled Austria for America during World War II—a family made super famous by the film “Sound of Music” and starring, yes, my heart throb of yesteryear, Julie Andrews…

When in Stowe, we did what all tourists do. We stopped off at the hotel owned by the Von Trapps… And who should we run into? Yes, Johannes Von Trapp, the youngest son of Julie Andrews (okay, not Julie’s kid, but the real Maria Von Trapp,  the Nun-Turned-Mom)… Here I am standing at Johannes’ side, with my dear friends, Joan Andrews, who works with the DLF Development Office for American Indian Initiatives, and Col. Brian Rees, M.D., a physician in the Army reserves who is helping to bring TM to soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with post-traumatic stress disorder…  Anyway, here we are, hanging with Johannes… Von Trapp…. what a wild world.. Thanks for listening, Love, Bobby Von Trapp

Posted by: bobroth | March 29, 2010

FROM THE ARCHIVES

Salem (Oregon, that is…)

No, this is not a family business… On our way to a morning meeting, we stopped at this namesake supermarket to get some breakfast goodies, including some very old (we couldn’t tell from the clear plastic container) pre-sliced “fresh” fruit… Not sure why I am blogging this, other than, well, it is a coldish Monday morning here in London, and the day has not begun yet so I don’t have anything new to report, but just wanted to say Hi. (The photo was taken BEFORE we ate the fruit!)

Newark (Airport)


Final rest stop before the flight to London on Saturday … (Okay, I promise to only blog more interesting stuff in the future…!)

Posted by: bobroth | March 26, 2010

MY BUDDY AC

Aden Charles Lieb relaxes in the hands of the divine

A highlight of my trip to Los Angeles last week was spending some really satisfying down time with Sam and Arwin Lieb and their beautiful son, Aden Charles “AC” … Sam is the creative director of DLF.TV and Arwin is an amazing illustrator of children’s books… AC? Well, take a look… He is a very relaxed, very contented guy, if you ask me … And when I hold him, my whole heart smoothes out, soothes out, and I breathe so soft and easy … Love you, AC, Bobby (Check out the previous AC blog)

Posted by: bobroth | March 25, 2010

IN DAVID’S SOUND STUDIO IN LA

David hangs out with some of the DLF.TV gang

(Clockwise from upper left) That’s Adam Pressman, our great director of all good things video for David Lynch Foundation Television; Sam Johnson, who makes everyone’s life smooth, blissful, and efficient; Sam Lieb, creative director of DLF.TV who has traveled all over the world with David and who David likes so much cuz he is so cool; Dave the man, himself, with multiple cups of cappuccino; and me, wearing David’s reading glasses. Missing: Heather Hartnett, Erin Skipper, Amy Kettenberg, Adrien Daller, Amine Kouider, Geoff Boothby, Ed Murphy, and Ike Winkler who were off doing other important stuff in LA or Fairfield or New York City. We do have a lot of fun at DLF.TV because we get to work with David… I mean, really, what could be better?!

Posted by: bobroth | March 24, 2010

Benefit Concert at the El Rey in LA

David, Donovan and Friends Support the Lynch Foundation Big-time

Last Friday, March 19, at the historic El Rey Theatre on Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles, the great ’60s singer/songwriter Donovan headlined a music-packed benefit concert for the David Lynch Foundation with loads of big-time LA-based musicians. The Theatre was jammed, the music was fantastic, and the cause was great—teach a million at-risk kids to meditate… Here are a few photos from that very lovely, very loud evening…

The El Rey is considered one of LA's original Art Deco theatres... It has gorgeous interiors, an intimate feeling, and holds about 1,000 (squinched in, standing up) people...

Rarely have I spoke to a crowd less interested in what I had to say! They were eager for me to introduce David Lynch and then listen to Donovan. No worries, I was too!

Take it, Dave!

Everybody loves David!

Everybody loves David!

Donovan has been at it for over 40 years, and yet the guy has not lost a thing... His voice is still incredibly rich and melodic, his music still stirs the soul, and his commitment to David and the Foundation is deeply moving...

"Mellow Yellow," "Hurdy Gurdy Man," "Season of the Witch," "Atlantis," etc. — Donovan performed for over an hour with a killer backup band and guest musicians organized by his son-in-law, Jason...

Backstage with Brit comic and actor (and DLF supporter) Russell Brand, Donovan, Emily Stofle Lynch (David's wife), and my hero, David. Good times...

Planning for what's next...

Photos credited to Adam Latham

A fabulous evening all the way around… And thanks to the incredible generosity of all involved, the David Lynch Foundation raised a good amount of money (still being counted) for a program to teach Transcendental Meditation to at-risk school kids as well as young girls (ages 11 to 17) in Los Angeles who have been victimized by prostitution.

Love these events but also happy when they are over… (I am getting a bit old for rock concerts!)

Thanks for listening…

Bobby

*You may also like to read a great article by Dr. Thomas Egenes on the Yoga Sutras.

Posted by: bobroth | March 12, 2010

FROM THE HOMELAND

Five things I am liking right now about living in NYC …

I could happily eat variations of most all my meals right here… I know that sounds pathetic and in bad taste, but hey, at least I am being honest… You could lose the jello cubes though...

1. Meditating in the morning at Russell Simmons’ place (a 7-minute brisk—warm or wet —walk from my place) …

2) Riding the subway straight up into the heart of Manhattan. Clean, air conditioned in the summer, warm in the winter, always bizarrely entertaining…

3) Salad bars on every corner of every street (a bit of an exaggeration but not by much)… Somehow tastes far better than if I pile up the exact same stuff at home…

4) A million yellow cabs in NYC… You can’t find a cab in SF or LA… and there are scant few in DC… but NYC? They OWN the streets…

5) As a transplanted SFer I was startled at first at the arrogance of NYers… Now, I have become one… Kinda… This place is SO SO SO NYCENTRIC…

Okay that’s it for now… Scads more things but another time…

Tomorrow evening I head out West with the DLF.TV video team to document meditation in prison where lots of inmates, staff, doctors, administrators, and the chaplain are all meditating…

Will report in then… adieu… Bobby

Posted by: bobroth | March 8, 2010

BOBBY GOES TO CHURCH IN CHICAGO

Where he has memorable meetings with a meditating Catholic priest and a meditating Methodist minister

I went to church in Chicago last week—two churches actually—to interview two highly respected Christian leaders, each of whom have been practicing Transcendental Meditation for over 30 years. (The interviews will be posted here soon.)

I was raised in the Jewish faith and have experienced how my meditation practice over the past 40 years has enriched my understanding of my own religious tradition.

So I was eager to hear what these two men of the cloth would say about their practice.

Each man was very gracious, setting set aside almost two hours to talk. The time flew by, and I left feeling deeply moved and inspired by the significance of what they had to say. Not surprisingly, that feeling has stayed with me, now several days later.

Both men spoke in glowing terms about their own longtime TM practice, which they emphasized (a) is not religious in nature, (b) does not conflict with their religion, and (c) only enriches their Christian faith. They said they meditate before their morning daily prayers and Scriptural readings because it settles mind, body, and heart—and makes their spiritual life more meaningful and fulfilling.

Here are a few photos from the interviews …

Father Len has been a Roman Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of Chicago for 42 years—and a TM meditator for 36 years. "TM gives me direct access to that great field of energy that is deep within me—and deep within everyone—and brings me closer to the interiority of my spiritual life."

I enjoyed being in the presence of this wise, energetic, deeply compassionate man.

Reverend Jonathan is a longtime Methodist minister in the Chicago area. He learned TM as a high school science teacher in 1975 at the suggestion of a fellow teacher who meditated. Rev. Jonathan said that his deep experiences of transcendence awoke in him the desire to become a minister, and follow in the footsteps of his father, who was a minister in the Dutch Reform Church.

Rev. Jonathan loves sports (I do, too) and has a quick wit, a contagious passion for his work, and deep scriptural insights into how meditation illuminates Christian tenets...

Conclusion: The whole experience with both Father Len and Reverend Jonathan was completely amazing. I am still processing it all…

I will say more when the videos of the interviews get posted. Until then, thanks for listening,

Bobby

P.S. And yes, in case you were wondering: We plan to interview Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist religious leaders who meditate, as well. There are lots!

P.P.S. A big thanks to the DLF.TV video crew (Sam Lieb, Amine Kouider, and Sam Johnson) for organizing this video production with, like, zero advance notice.

*Check out the new Transcendental Meditation Blog for more recent interviews including a video of Father Len Dubi speaking about Christianity and Transcendental Meditation.

Also, if you haven’t already seen it, Dr. Norman Rosenthal has written a wonderful “Transcendence” book which is well worth reading.

Posted by: bobroth | March 7, 2010

From the Archives— David in The Ukraine

Everywhere the questions are the same

At the invitation of local film schools in Russia and the Ukraine, David Lynch toured Moscow and Kiev last year to speak to the press and and students about Transcendental Meditation, filmmaking, painting, photography, the creative process, and consciousness.

Everywhere the questions were the same:

• “How can meditation help students?” (Better grades, less stress, less drugs, more inner bliss, David said.)

• “Will you ever come back to make a film?” (Yes, if I get the inspiration, David said.)

• “Do artists need to suffer to create?” (I keep getting the same question everywhere. David said. The answer is No. If an artist is truly suffering, he or she won’t be able to get out of bed to work.)

Here are a few great photos from the trip (Thank you, Sam Lieb) ….

The deepest level of the mind is an ocean of creativity, energy, and bliss. Get wet with that through meditation and come out and create.

Despite repeated entreaties from film students, David steadfastly refused to explain the meaning of any of his films to anyone. He said everyone will have an intuition about what something means, and that is all that really counts.

Expand your ball of consciousness and catch ideas at deeper, more powerful levels. And then go to work.

David is a rare soul: A Hollywood director who cares as much (or more) for the welfare of the world as he does his art. His visit brought out a lot of press with a lot of questions.

David waits for a question to be translated into English…

Dr. Avinoam Barkol helps to direct the David Lynch Foundation in the Ukraine…

David signs copies of the Russian translation of his book, “Catching the Big Fish.” Ukrainian-speaking people wanted to know why wasn’t it translated into Ukraine. Good question, David said. A new translation and book is now in process.

David’s visit inspired many schools in the former Soviet nation to request Foundation programs to be offered to students, faculty, staff, and parents … (“Rocks are melting,” Maharishi would say, when what seemed to be impossible just a short while ago is now probable.)

THE FIRST DIVE
By David Lynch
From “Catching the Big Fish” (Tarcher/Penguin)

When I first heard about meditation, I had zero interest in it. I wasn’t even curious. It sounded like a waste of time.

What got me interested, though, was the phrase “true happiness lies within.” At first, I thought it sounded kind of mean because it doesn’t tell you where the “within” is, or how to get there. But, still, it had a ring of truth. And I began to think that maybe meditation was a way to go within.

I looked into meditation, asked some questions, and started contemplating different forms. At that moment, my sister called and said she had been doing Transcendental Meditation for six months. There was something in her voice. A change. A quality of happiness. And I thought, “That’s what I want.”

So, in July 1973 I went to the TM center in Los Angeles and met an instructor, and I liked her. She looked like Doris Day. And she taught me this technique. She gave me a mantra, which is a sound-vibration-thought. You don’t meditate on the meaning of it, but it’s a very specific sound-vibration-thought.

She took me into a little room to have my first meditation. I sat down, closed my eyes, started this mantra, and it was like I was in an elevator and they cut the cable. Boom! I fell into bliss – pure bliss. And I was just in there. Then the teacher said, “It’s time to come out; it’s been twenty minutes.” And I said, “IT’S ALREADY BEEN TWENTY MINUTES?!” And she said “Shhhh!,” because other people were meditating. It seemed so familiar, but also so new and powerful. After that, I said the word “unique” should be reserved for this experience.

It’s takes you to an ocean of pure consciousness, pure knowingness. But it’s familiar; it’s you. And, right away, a sense of happiness emerges – not a goofball happiness, but a thick beauty.

I have never missed a meditation in 36 years. I meditate once in the morning and again in the afternoon, for about 20 minutes each time. Then I go about the business of my day. And I find that the joy of doing increases. Intuition increases. The pleasure of life grows. And negativity recedes.

Posted by: bobroth | February 25, 2010

On the Road with David – From the Archives

“Catching the Big Fish”

___________________________________________________________________________

Here is a revealing exchange between David and an interviewer from the MSN.com news site:

MSN: Other than public speaking, what are you most afraid of?
DAVID: Dying.

On and off during the past five years in support of the David Lynch Foundation, David has traveled to over 20 countries (usually paid for by local film schools) to answer questions about his films, the creative process, meditation, his foundation, life, etc. He may not like it much, but his audiences really do…

___________________________________________________________________________

Barnes and Noble David’s book, “Catching the Big Fish,” had just been released, and he was a featured speaker at the Barnes and Noble flagship store on Union Square in New York City. There are four floors at the store. David spoke to about 400 people on the top floor meeting area (it is a big place). But there were as many as 500 or 600 people (by the manager’s estimation) jammed into the aisles on the lower three floors who could not get upstairs. So the manager piped David’s interview through the store’s emergency sound system so everyone could listen. David was joined onstage at the end by the great girl group, Au Revoir Simone.

Yale David spoke to a packed house of 1200 students at Battel Chapel at Yale University in New Haven… To a student who asked, “Don’t you have to suffer to create?” David replied, “If you are really suffering, if you are really depressed or have a migraine headache or diarrhea, then you can’t even get out of bed to create. Suffering squeezes off the conduit to creativity. An artist doesn’t have to suffer to show suffering, just like the artist doesn’t have to die to show a death scene. You have to understand suffering, you have to understand the human condition, but the suffering should stay on the screen on not in real life.”

Brazil During an 8-day, fantastically whirlwind tour Rio Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Bella Horizonte, and Puerto Allegre (for the Portuguese translation of his book), David spoke on college campuses, visited schools were the students meditate, held news conferences, and met with government leaders. Here he is interviewed at the Globo Television Studios in Rio. One of the most searingly poignant moments came during David’s visit to a crumbling school auditorium outside of Belle Horizonte, where 3,000 meditating students from the favelas (shantytowns) had gathered to hear David speak and to meditate together. This you have to see…

Compassion

“Softer than the flower where kindness is concerned,
“Stronger than the thunder where principles are at stake.”

—Vedic definition of the enlightened

Meditation is not a selfish thing. Even though you’re diving in and experiencing the Self, you’re not closing yourself off from the world. You’re strengthening yourself so you can be more effective when you go back out into the world.

It’s like they say on airplanes: “First put your mask on, and then help those next to you put theirs on.” My friend Charlie Lutes used to say, “There’s a guy crying on the curb, and you sit down to comfort him, and pretty soon there’s two guys crying on the curb.”

So compassion, appreciation for others, and the capacity to help others is enhanced when you meditate. You start diving down and experiencing this ocean of pure love, pure peace — you could say pure compassion. You experience that, and know it by being it. Then you go out into the world, and you can really do something for people.

From “Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity” by David Lynch (Tarcher/Penguin)

Posted by: bobroth | February 23, 2010

Tight Shot…

Bobby Answers Your Questions … On Video!

I get a lot of questions about Transcendental Meditation, so I asked my friends at DLF.TV to videotape some answers.

Check out http://dlf.tv/2010/tm-faq to see how I did.

Here are a few…

• “How does Transcendental Meditation work?

• “How does TM differ from other meditations?

• “Can I learn TM from a book?

• “Why does it cost money?

There are a few more…

A big thanks to Amine, Sam 1, Adam, Sarah, Zach, Sam 2, and Heather of DLF.TV for making this happen…

If you have any more questions you want me to answer, please ask them through this blog site. I will do my best to answer each one as soon as possible… I also have Facebook!

Thanks for watching,

Bobby

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