celebrities

David Lynch’s strange solo album debut

Chris Willman: Sometimes it’s hard not to think that David Lynch’s fixation on transcendental meditation isn’t a joke the filmmaker is playing on us. Is there any major artist whose entire body of work has seemed more ominous, more filled with sinister intonations, less meditative? Mantras don’t come much scarier than “fire walk with me.”

Lynch’s first solo album, “Crazy Clown Time,” doesn’t sound very Maharishi-approved, either. If you’ve ommm-ed your way to a state of higher consciousness, it’s just the record to bring yourself back down to earth, though it might overcompensate by taking you to the third or fourth rung of …

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Steve Jobs’ private spirituality now an open book

Daniel Burke: He considered moving to a Zen monastery before shifting his sights to Silicon Valley, where he became a brash businessman.

He preached about the dangers of desire but urged consumers to covet every new iPhone incarnation.
“He was an enlightened being who was cruel,” says a former girlfriend. “That’s a strange combination.”

Now, we can add another irony to the legacy of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs: Since his death on Oct. 5, the famously private man’s spiritual side has become an open book.

A relative recounted his last words for The New York Times. A new biography traces his early quest for enlightenment …

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Sit. Breathe. Be a Better Leader.

Tatiana Serafin: Harley Murphy, who heads the Ireland operations of BNY Mellon, used to lie awake at night unable to sleep because of an avalanche of problems facing his division during the banking crisis. “I’d go to the office each day feeling exhausted and was beginning to feel miserable,” says Murphy. He found it difficult to think clearly and make confident decisions. He looked for ways to get back on track and then, as part of a leadership training session, took a meditation class. After 30 minutes, he began to relax and focus. “I couldn’t believe it,” says Murphy.

Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons meditates…

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Steve Jobs on death

Steve Jobs

I’m sad that Steve Jobs has died. No one has had as much effect on the computer industry as he has. His company, Apple, has transformed the way we relate to computers.

I only recently learned that Jobs was a Buddhist. According to his Wikipedia biography, he went to India in the 1970s and came back a Buddhist. In 1991 his wedding ceremony was performed by a Zen priest. He was a very private man, and I don’t think he talked much about his religion.

I thought a fitting tribute would be Jobs own words, from his 2005 commencement address at Stanford University, in which he eloquently discusses how an awareness of death and impermanence inspired him to live life to the fullest.

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.

This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

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Goldie Hawn discusses teaching meditation and neuroscience to children

wildmind meditation news

Goldie Hawn, whose Hawn Foundation develops programs to help children thrive and find happiness, recently appeared on ABC Nightline to discuss her foundation’s work. In particular she talked about MindUp, which is helping kinds by teaching them mindfulness meditation, or what Hawn calls “brain breaks,” and neuroscience.

In the wake of 9/11, Hawn became concerned at learning that US children were among the unhappiest in the world, with rising suicide rates, depression, and one in three children on medication. As a meditator, she became convinced that she could make a difference. She launched the Hawn Foundation, and began working with scientists to help children train their brains to focus, and become happier.

220 schools in the US, Canada, and Britain are now using her MindUp program.

The video is below.

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Goldie Hawn plunges into brain science

Ingrid Wickelgren: When I arrived at the Aspen Meadows Resort for the Second Annual Aspen Brain Forum last Thursday evening, Goldie Hawn was getting out of a vehicle near the entrance. I knew she was about to give the keynote address, but I was startled to practically run into the actress. A grandmother now, Hawn looked fabulous in over-the-knee black leather boots and a chunky silver belt strung around a black miniskirt. It wasn’t so much her looks, though, that made her instantly recognizable. Her trademark laugh and general effervescence mark her like a strobe light, quite visible even in the bright Colorado sun. I watched her stop to…

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Roseanne Barr: Meditate with me at Jewish retreat

When one thinks of Roseanne Barr, “meditative” is hardly the first adjective that comes to mind. The Emmy Award-winning comedian and actress, who reached superstar status with her role as a blue-collar matriarch on her hit eponymous sitcom, was never known for her mellow side (assuming she had one). Whether in character or doing standup, she was loud, crass and often politically incorrect.

Yet despite her reputation for volume, volubility and controversy, Barr, 58, and her sister, Geraldine, will host a women’s spirituality and meditation weekend at the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center in Connecticut later this month. The retreat will…

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Jane Fonda on the power of positivity and meditation

Elevated Existence Magazine interviewed Jane Fonda about her new book “Prime Time.” Elevated Existence: You dedicated a chapter of “Prime Time” to positivity as an essential component to aging – why do you believe it is easier to remain positive as we age, and what are the best ways to do so?

Jane Fonda: Positivity is a word I learned from gerontologists, or scientists who study aging. They have discovered that older people, starting around 50 years, tend to be happier, less anxious and less hostile. This is based on extensive research of hundreds of thousands of people. No one can explain absolutely…

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Jeff Bridges enjoys meditation

The American actor tries to find time to relax every day. He enjoys meditating as it’s the one time he can completely clear his mind and not worry about what is going on around him.

“I skipped today because I got up late, but it’s very effective for me. It’s good to block out external stimulus for a set amount of time because, for one thing, it enhances the experience when you are stimulated by something,” he explained.

“It brings dynamics into your life. If you allow yourself to stop, you also realise how much stimulus is coming from within you.”

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Re-Wiring your brain for happiness: Research shows how meditation can physically change the brain

Dan Harris & Erin Brady (ABC News): A quiet explosion of new research indicating that meditation can physically change the brain in astonishing ways has started to push into mainstream.

Several studies suggest that these changes through meditation can make you happier, less stressed — even nicer to other people. It can help you control your eating habits and even reduce chronic pain, all the while without taking prescription medication.

Meditation is an intimate and intense exercise that can be done solo or in a group, and one study showed that 20 million Americans say they practice meditation. It has been used to help treat addictions, to clear psoriasis and even to treat men with impotence.

The U.S…

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