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David Lynch Foundation

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David Lynch Foundation

David Lynch Foundation
David Lynch, founder
Motto Change begins within
Area served North and South America
Key people John Hagelin, Bob Roth, Ramani Ayer,
Mission To fund stress-reduction programs for at-risk populations
Website .org.davidlynchfoundationwww

The David Lynch Foundation For Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace (DLF) is a global charitable foundation with offices in New York City, Los Angeles, and Fairfield, Iowa.[1][2][3][4] It was founded by film director and Transcendental Meditation (TM) practitioner David Lynch in 2005 to fund the teaching of TM in schools.[5] Over the years it has expanded its focus to include other "at-risk" populations such as the homeless, U.S. military veterans, African war refugees[6] and prison inmates.[7]

The foundation is reported to have sponsored between 70,000 and 150,000 students in 350 schools throughout the U.S. and South America. It has held several benefits to inspire charitable contributions. A 2009 benefit concert featured George Stephanopoulos. The foundation also sponsors research on the TM program.


According to the foundation's web site David Lynch Foundation for Ashley Deans, Linda Handy, Sarina Grosswald.[13]


Concerned about school violence and increasing stress and problems for students,[14][15] David Lynch founded the DLF in July 2005 "to provide the [TM] program to schools".[16] That year, Lynch, DLF President John Hagelin, and Maharishi University of Management researcher Fred Travis went on a lecture tour titled "Consciousness, Creativity, and the Brain". Tour dates included University of Southern California,[17] UC Berkeley,[18] the University of Oregon in Eugene,[19] the University of Washington,[20] Emerson College,[21] Yale University, and Brown University.[22] In 2005, Lynch offered to fund (for-credit) peace studies courses at several universities with TM instruction being included in each course.[23]

By 2006, six public schools in the U.S. had been awarded $25,000 by the David Lynch Foundation.[24] [25] In October the foundation withdrew a $175,000 pledge to a San Rafael, California high school after the pro-separation, Pacific Justice Institute threatened to sue for violating the First Amendment's Establishment Clause.[26] That year Lynch assigned all of his proceeds from the sale of his book Catching the Big Fish to the DLF[27] and the foundation sponsored a presentation on the benefits of TM in education at the Harvard Club of Boston.[28]

Natural Health magazine reported in 2007 that the DLF had given $3 million in sponsorship to 20 U.S. schools located in the city of Washington D.C. and various states including Arizona, New York, California, Michigan, Colorado, Connecticut, and Michigan.[29] By 2008, the foundation had funded TM courses for more than 2,000 students, faculty and parents at 21 universities and schools in the U.S., in addition to substantially higher numbers at schools overseas.[30] That year DLF funded the TM program at two schools in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.[31] A 2010 Wall Street Journal article reported that since 2005, Lynch had personally "donated half a million dollars to help finance scholarships for 150,000 students who are interested in learning transcendental meditation".[32] The Jerusalem Post reported in 2009 that the DLF had "provided scholarships to more than 60,000 people interested in practicing Transcendental Mediation throughout the United States, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa."[33][34]

In 2011 the press reported that DLF had "raised millions of dollars" to finance the teaching of the TM technique to "150,000 people, mostly students, worldwide",[35] including a "handful" of San Francisco’s public schools[1] while an ABC News article reported the foundation had sponsored "70,000 students for free in 350 schools around the world; 15 of them are in the United States."[36]

In 2012, the New York Times and other press reported that the DLF had expanded its programs to include other at-risk populations such as "veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and their families, homeless people and incarcerated juveniles and adults".[37][38][39]

In April 2013, Lynch released the film Meditation, Creativity and Peace which documented his 2007 speaking engagements at European and Middle Eastern film schools in 16 countries. According to Lynch, profits from the distribution of the film would benefit his foundation's meditation instruction for students around the world.[40] The film was described by one reviewer as a "fragmented, self-important film noir".[41]

Fundraising events


Paul McCartney, David Lynch, and Ringo Starr at David Lynch Foundation press conference in April 2009

With the goal of teaching TM to 1 million high risk youth,[42] the foundation sponsored the 2009 "Change Begins Within" benefit concert, held at Radio City Music Hall and hosted by Lynch and Laura Dern. Guest speakers and performers included Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Donovan, Moby, Eddie Vedder, Ben Harper, Paul Horn, Jim James, Bettye LaVette, Sheryl Crow, Angelo Badalamenti, Russell Simmons,[42] Mike Love, Jerry Seinfeld and Howard Stern.[43]

The foundation held its second "Change Begins Within" benefit event, titled "Operation Warrior Wellness", at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in December 2010. Participants included Lynch, actor Clint Eastwood, designer Donna Karan, comedian Russell Brand and several war veterans.[44][45] Then in April 2011, the foundation launched David Lynch Foundation Music with their "Download for Good" campaign through PledgeMusic.[46] Items available for pledges included unique collector's items from Shepard Fairey and original vinyl art created by Daniel Edlen which was signed by the donating musicians.[47] In July 2011 the DLF released a fund raising boxed set of music and film. The compilation featured 34 artists, including Ben Folds, Donovan, Moby, Iggy Pop, Peter Gabriel, Tom Waits, Maroon 5 and Alanis Morissette with bonus tracks by Sean Lennon and Julio Iglesias Jr. and included the documentary film, Meditation, Creativity, Peace.[48]

2012 and 2013

In June 2012 Jerry Seinfeld hosted a DLF fundraiser called A Night of Comedy honoring [49][50] Performers and guests included Russell Brand, Sarah Silverman, Garry Shandling, Jason Alexander and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Chris Rock and Danny DeVito.[51]

In January 2013 DLF sponsored a benefit jazz concert in New York City. The program featured comments by TV hosts Liv Tyler. Musical performances included Herbie Hancock, Corrine Bailey Rae and Wynton Marsalis.[52] In February, it sponsored another Operation Warrior Wellness fund raiser at the New York Athletic Club in New York City.[53]

In 2013 the DLF founded a "charity based music label" called, Transcendental Music, to raise funds and awareness for its programs.[54] In August, 2013 The Independent announced Russel Brand would raise funds for the David Lynch Foundation while on his "Messiah Complex" tour.[55] In the fall, there were two fundraising events for New York City's first responders with post traumatic stress disorder that featured celebrities Liv Tyler, Royston Langdon, Sean Lennon[56][57] and Hugh Jackman.[58] Later that month, Jack White and Brendan Benson performed a charity concert for DLF at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN.[59][60]

According to the DLF website, the Foundation's sponsorship encompasses programs for schools, military, homeless shelters, prisons and global outreach.[6]


DLF funded program in a Peruvian school

The David Lynch Foundation web site says it focuses on school-wide instruction in Transcendental Meditation with the aim of improving educational and health outcomes. Its school programs, dubbed "Quiet Time", are voluntary, and require parental permission.[61] According to the foundation, the programs are offered to students and faculty at no cost to the parents or school.[62] The Foundation has reportedly funded school programs in U.S. cities of Washington D.C, New York City, Hartford CT, Detroit MI, San Francisco CA and in the countries of Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Vietnam, Nepal, Northern Ireland, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa and Israel.[63][64][65] In 2007, DLF began sponsoring Quiet Time at Visitacion Valley Middle School, providing an annual grant that covers most of the $175,000 cost of dedicated staff to run the program,[1] as well as supporting three other schools in San Francisco. As of 2007 another ten schools in the same San Francisco district were waiting to start the program. After studying the program, Carlos Garcia, school district superintendent, concluded that Quiet Time was a secular program that calms students and allows them to learn.[66][67]

DLF funded Transcendental Meditation courses for students at the Lowell Whiteman Primary School in Boulder, Colorado in 2008.[68] In 2009, the Church and State magazine reported that the Americans United for the Separation of Church and State had characterized the David Lynch Foundation's funding of Transcendental Meditation for public school students as undermining the constitutional separation of church and state.[69] In 2011 music mogul Russell Simmons announced plans to provide financial support to the David Lynch Foundation to teach TM at Hillhouse High School in New Haven, Connecticut.[70] In 2009 the DLF provided $120,000 to fund a Transcendental Meditation Club at the Tucson Magnet High School in Arizona, U.S. which had offered TM courses to 160 students, staff, and faculty as of 2010.[71]


In 2006 Lynch made a personal donation of $100,000 and the DLF inaugurated Operation Warrior Wellness (a DLF national initiative) whose goal is to teach the TM technique to 10,000 veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and other war related ailments. Since 2010 DLF has contributed almost $1 million to sponsor TM courses for veterans and their families.[32][72][73] The Transcendental Meditation technique's effect on post traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD) is the topic of research at the University of Colorado[74][75] and was the topic of a study published in Military Medicine[76] in 2011. Other initiatives to teach the TM technique to war veterans who are at risk for PTSD are ongoing.[77][78] The DLF sponsored[53] TM technique instruction for students at Norwich University, a private military academy, as part of a long-term study on meditation and military performance.[79][80] The DLF raises funds to cover the $500 per person cost of TM training for military personnel.[53] According to Bob Roth, Executive Director of the David Lynch Foundation, the US Department of Defense is examining potential advantages of TM for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan. In order to procure support from the US government, the foundation is striving to teach 10,000 veterans, active soldiers, trainees, and their families.[81]

Social programs

The DLF began a program in 2010, at a Van Nuys, California, youth shelter called Children of the Night.[35] The David Lynch Foundation also produced the video "Saving the Disposable Ones", about the work of Father Gabriel Mejia and the Fundación Hogares Claret, dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating homeless children in Colombia.[82] According to the DLF web site, Father Gabriel Mejia has founded 47 shelters for homeless children where thousands of young people practice the Transcendental Meditation technique.[83] The Foundation now teaches TM to prisoners.[84]


DLF has donated for research on the effects of TM at the University of Connecticut and the University of Michigan.[32] By 2008 the DLF had donated $5 million to research on the TM program.[30] According to a 2009 press release on PsychCentral, DLF made plans that year to provide a $2 million grant to fund research on the "effects of the [TM] technique on ADHD and other learning disorders".[85]


  1. ^ a b c Schreiber, Dan (8 May 2011) San Francisco Examiner, Meditation program mends troubled Visitacion Valley Middle School.
  2. ^ David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace Iowa Secretary of State (Requires a data search for business #314711)
  3. ^ "Contact". David Lynch Foundation. Retrieved 5 March 2013. 
  4. ^ Hoffman, Claire (February 22, 2013). "David Lynch Is Back ... As a Guru of Transcendental Meditation". New York Times. Retrieved 5 March 2013. 
  5. ^ Larsen, Peter (10 August 2005). "Tapping into TM: Filmmaker David Lynch wants to share with schools the benefits he says he's reaped from Transcendental Meditation". Orange County Register. p. Cover. Archived from the original on 2006-05-25. Retrieved 6 September 2013. 
  6. ^ a b c David Lynch Foundation About Us. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  7. ^ Hooper, Joseph (September 2011). "Meditation Nation". Details Magazine. Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  8. ^ "David Lynch Foundation Healing Traumatic Stress and Raising Performance in At-risk Populations". Retrieved 15 November 2013. 
  9. ^ (September 30, 2005)Harvard CrimsonWasserstein, Scoop, "David Lynch meditates on peace", .
  10. ^ (July 21, 2005)Chronicle of Higher EducationHoover, Eric, "Filmmaker starts foundation to help students chill out with Transcendental Meditation", .
  11. ^ Yourse, Robin-Denise (March 26, 2009). "HBO pic on Clintons". Washington Times. 
  12. ^ "David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace: IRS Form 990, Fiscal year 2008" (PDF). GuideStar. February 12, 2010. 
  13. ^ David Lynch Foundation Directors and Advisors. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  14. ^ Springen, Karen, April 26, 2005, “The Magic of Meditation”, Newsweek.
  15. ^ Pierce, Elise, March 2006, “Are the Kids All Right?”, United Hemispheres.
  16. ^ Larsen, Peter (August 10, 2005) Orange County Register, Tapping into TM.
  17. ^ Booth, William (December 2, 2005). "Yogi Bearer; Dark Films Aside, David Lynch Brims With the Light of Transcendental Meditation". The Washington Post. p. C.01. 
  18. ^ Harmanci, Reyhan (November 6, 2005). "FIVE QUESTIONS FOR: David Lynch / Bliss and world peace, one campus at a time". San Francisco Chronicle. p. D.4. 
  19. ^ Keefer, Bob (November 6, 2005). "Movie director takes cues from Transcendental Meditation". The Register-Guard (Eugene, Or.). p. G.1. 
  20. ^ GOODNOW, CECELIA (November 5, 2005). "DAVID LYNCH IS SPREADING THE GOSPEL OF MEDITATION". Seattle Post - Intelligencer. p. D.1. 
  21. ^ Morrow, Jennifer (October 11, 2005). "Transcending it all: David Lynch is happy, and wants you to know it". The Retrieved 11 November 2013. updated May 31, 2011 
  22. ^ Houpt, Simon (October 10, 2005). "From Twin Peaks to inner peace". The Globe and Mail (Toronto, Ont.). p. R.1. 
  23. ^ Wilson, Charles, December 11, 2005, “Accredited Bliss”, New York Times Magazine.
  24. ^ (May 2066) NEA Today, National Education Association, Clear Your Mind
  25. ^ Kirsten Wells, Denise (Sept 1 2006) Teacher Magazine, Take Your Meditation.
  26. ^ Californian Catholics against teaching of meditation in public schools, The Buddhist Channel, 6 August 2007.
  27. ^ Lynch, David, (2006) The Penguin Group) About the Author (last page of the book).
  28. ^ Cynthia E. Johnson; Lisa Lindberg. "Taking Care of The Student – The Forgotten Element in Education". originally printed in Pathways Magazine, Washington, DC. Winter 2009 
  29. ^ Linda, Marsa (July 1, 2007). "Eastwood and Lynch launch Operation Warrior Wellness to teach 10,000... Save Export Email Print Cite TM makes the grade: a Hollywood director is bringing Transcendental Meditation to kids, but they're not the only ones who can benefit from it". Natural Health. Retrieved 6 September 2013. 
  30. ^ a b Conant, Eve (29 May 2008). "Much dispute about Nothing". Newsweek. 
  31. ^ Fridell, Zach (14 December 2008) Steamboat Springs Pilot, Meditation Soothes Lowell Whitman students.
  32. ^ a b c "Filmmaker David Lynch Introduces Meditation to Veterans" Wall Street Journal, November 26, 2010. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  33. ^ Cashman, Greer Fay (March 11, 2009). "Day Tripper Across the Universe. Ex-Beatles to unite to promote TM in schools around the world, including in Israel". Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 6 September 2013. 
  34. ^ Yellin, Steven (March 2009). "Meditation in the Classroom". Elevated Existence. 
  35. ^ a b Strauss,Bob (June 3, 2011) Children of the Night Daily News. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  36. ^ James, Susan Donaldson (November 29, 2011) Comic Russel Brand does stand up for Transcendental Meditation ABC News. Retrieved 5 December 2011.
  37. ^ Pember, Mary Annette (February 1, 2012) TM combating diabetes in Indian country Indian Country Today. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
  38. ^ Aleksander, Irina (18 March 2011). "Look Who’s Meditating Now". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 2011-11-22. Retrieved 22 November 2011. Mr. Brand was the M.C. at a benefit for the David Lynch Foundation, an organization that offers TM at no cost to troubled students, veterans, homeless people, prisoners and others. 
  39. ^ Hooper, Joseph (September 2011) Details, Meditation Nation. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  40. ^ ”Russell Brand and David Lynch Bring Meditation to At-Risk Youth”. Look to the Stars/The World of Celebrity Giving. ( . April 4, 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2013.
  41. ^ Golumbuk, Morgan (October 7, 2013). "Borscht Stunds, David Lynch Gets Lost in Transcendental Translation". Miami New Times. Retrieved 13 December 2013. 
  42. ^ a b Donaldson, Susan James, “Stars Mantra: Get 1M Kids to Meditate”, ABC News, 4-6-09.
  43. ^ The Hollywood Reporter "Change Begins Within at Radio City Music Hall -- Concert Review". Retrieved 18 July 2009.
  44. ^ December 15, 2010, "Eastwood meditates to battle stress", The Gold Coast Bulletin (Australia).
  45. ^ December 13, 2010, "Celebs, war vets promote meditation" Agence France Presse.
  46. ^ Michele, Rita Di. "Introducing David Lynch Foundation’s New Venture – DLF Music". Music Media Network. Retrieved 9 September 2014. 
  47. ^ "Iggy Pop Autographed Vinyl Artwork At David Lynch Foundation Music". Iggy and the Stooges Raw Power. Retrieved 9 September 2014. 
  48. ^ "FOUNDATION TO RELEASE BOX SET FOR RECORD STORE DAY". Goldmine. April 1, 2012. Retrieved 6 September 2013. 
  49. ^ Criblez, David J. (19 December 2012). "Seinfeld does two shows for Sandy victims". Newsday. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  50. ^ "All that scary jazz". New York Post. 18 December 2012. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  51. ^ "Comedy benefit to honor legendary Seinfeld producer George Shapiro". David Lynch Foundation. 23 May 2012. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  52. ^ Vilensky, Mike (December 14, 2012). "Meditating on Contrasts". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 20 January 2013. 
  53. ^ a b c Winter, Caroline (6 February 2013). "Transcendental Meditation May Help Stressed Vets". BloombergBusinessweek. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  54. ^ Peterman, Mindy (June 18, 2013). "David Lynch's Transcendental Music label inspires new talent".  
  55. ^ Williams, Holly (31 August 2013). "Heads Up: Russell Brand's Messiah Complex".  
  56. ^ Staff writer (October 16, 2013). "Liv Tyler to team up with ex for rooftop charity gig". Retrieved December 13, 2013. 
  57. ^ WENN (October 16, 2013). "Spacehog - Liv Tyler To Team Up With Rocker Ex For Rooftop Charity Gig". Contact Music. Retrieved December 13, 2013. 
  58. ^ Cohen, Stephanie (December 5, 2013). "Ohm For All". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 13, 2013. 
  59. ^ Gold, Adam (December 19, 2013). "Jack White and Brendan Benson Revisit the Raconteurs". Rolling Stone magazine. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  60. ^ Staff Writer (October 8, 2013). "Jack White And Brendan Benson To Perform At Benefit Concert". RTT News. Retrieved December 13, 2013. 
  61. ^ Nobori, Mariko. "A Bold Approach to Reducing Student Stress". Edutopia. Retrieved 14 November 2013. 
  62. ^ David Lynch Foundation "Transforming Lives: The David Lynch Foundation". Retrieved 17 July 2009.
  63. ^ "Stress-free urban schools". David Lynch Foundation. Archived from the original on September 15, 2010. 
  64. ^ "At-risk children in developing countries". David Lynch Foundation. Archived from the original on September 15, 2010. 
  65. ^ Ehud Zion Waldoks, "School crisis? Send the kids to the corner – to count to 10 cross their legs and hum..." The Jerusalem Post 22 November 2007.
  66. ^ States News Service, February 22, 2012, “Risking peace at a troubled school”, San Rafael, CA.
  67. ^ [1] Center for Wellness and Achievement in Education official website. Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  68. ^ Fridell, Zach, December 14, 2008, “Meditation soothes Lowell Whiteman students”, Steamboat Pilot and Today.
  69. ^ Levitating Over the Church-State Wall? Church & State magazine, June 2009.
  70. ^ [2] New Haven Independent, 16 March 2011, Russell Simmons Brings TM to Hillhouse, Michelle Turner.
  71. ^ Kossan, Pat (April 8, 2010). "Transcendental Meditation Club draws student". Arizona Republic. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  72. ^ Bender, Bryan, December 26, 2012, “Training cadets for war and (inner) peace: Study suggests meditation may help prevent PTSD”, The Boston Globe.
  73. ^ [3] Operation Warrior Wellness official website. Retrieved 17 February 2013.
  74. ^ Don Vaughn. "Military Officer Association of America, Promise for PTSD". Retrieved 6 September 2013. 
  75. ^ "CAM and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Pub Med.". Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 4 (1): 131–2. March 2007.  
  76. ^ Unknown author (29 January 2013). "Transcendental Meditation technique reduces PTSD symptoms in U.S. Marines". News Medical. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  77. ^ [4] Wall Street Journal, Film Maker Introduces Veterans to Meditation, 26 November 2010.
  78. ^ [5] Syndney Morning Herald, "Stars Hum Praises of Meditation's Healing Power", 15 December 2010.
  79. ^ Bender, Bryan (2 December 2012) Training cadets for war and (inner) peace; Study suggests meditation may help prevent PTSD, The Boston Globe (Boston, MA).
  80. ^ Vogel, Steve (May 4, 2012) VA tests use of TM for vets with PTSD, The Washington Post.
  81. ^ "Filmmaker David Lynch touts meditation for PTSD". AFP. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  82. ^ "South - South News Father Gabriel Mejia Fundacion Hogares Claret". Black Tie International Magazine. May 2011. Retrieved 17 November 2013. 
  83. ^ [6] DLF official webs site, Global Outreach page, see the "Support the David Lynch Foundation—Center de Fundación Hogares Claret Project" article in lower right hand corner. Retrieved 11 April 2011.
  84. ^ Stein, Jeannine, March 17, 2012, “TM directs Lynch”, Los Angeles Times.
  85. ^ Nauert Ph.D, Rick and Grohol Psy.D., John (January 5, 2009) PsychCentral Meditation Helps Students With ADHD.

External links

  • David Lynch Foundation official website
  • David Lynch Foundation Television official website
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