Legendary directors mobilize to bring Transcendental Meditation to veterans – Wall St. Journal

The Wall Street Journal reported on November 26 that Hollywood directors David Lynch, Clint Eastwood, Martin Scorsese, and George Lucas have mobilized together to support “Operation Warrior Wellness”—a new nationwide initiative to help 10,000 veterans overcome post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) through the Transcendental Meditation technique.

lynch-eastwood-scorsese-lucasThe need for the TM® technique is enormous and urgent. An estimated 500,000 veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars—nearly 35 percent of the total troops who have returned to the US since 2001—suffer from PTSD or some other form of mental injury.

PTSD is an anxiety disorder sparked by life-threatening danger or other terrifying events. People suffering from PTSD are haunted by its devastating symptoms, which include recurring nightmares, flashbacks, phobias, outbursts of intense anger, insomnia, jumpiness and emotional numbness.

Over the past two decades, research has found that veterans with PTSD who have learned the Transcendental Meditation technique have experienced a significant improvement in their condition. This has prompted growing interest from government agencies, veterans’ groups, and physicians to recommend the TM program to vets with stress-related mood disorders.

david-lynch-cartoonDavid Lynch will launch Operation Warrior Wellness during an international news conference in New York City on Monday, December 13. Mr. Lynch will be joined via video by Mr. Eastwood and in person by leading medical doctors and researchers, as well as veterans from World War II and the Vietnam, Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan wars.

Following the news conference, Mr. Lynch will host a fundraising gala for the veterans initiative at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. He will be joined by Dr. Mehmet Oz, Russell Brand, Katy Perry, and other celebrities.

Since its establishment in 2005, the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace has provided scholarships for more than 150,000 at-risk students to learn the Transcendental Meditation technique. In the past two years, the Lynch Foundation has begun funding programs for other at-risk populations, including men and women in rehabilitation programs and in prisons.

Mr. Lynch told the Wall Street Journal, “These men and women have a lot of honor for what they have been through and don’t want to appear weak or admit suffering.” But Mr. Lynch feels that the high rates of suicide and other stress-related disorders in our returning veterans show that they need help.

“Clint Eastwood is about as macho as they get and he’s been meditating longer than I have,” Mr. Lynch said. “We’re behind this technique and we think it can help veterans reclaim their lives and save themselves, their families, and their friendships.”