David Lynch’s peace mission

The film director joins other leaders in science and arts for a day of peace education.

Film director David Lynch is among the leaders in science, art, and politics who will gather this weekend to help give peace a chance.

“Creating Peace Day” will take place Sunday at the Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield.

Lynch, as well as Robert Muller, the former assistant secretary general of the United Nations; and Uganda native Samite, the director of Musicians for World Harmony, are among those who will speak, perform and lead a candlelight ceremony.

Transcendental Meditation

“Transcendental Meditation was ruled a religion by the United States District Court, District of New Jersey, Docket No. 76-341 (H.C.M.) Civil Action, in the case of Alan B. Malnak. et al., Plaintiffs, v. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, et al., Defendants, in a summary judgment issued October 19, 1977, followed by an order and judgment, filed December 12, 1977.”
- Is TM a religion?

He will join all the speakers from 10 a.m. to noon for a panel discussion and again at 7:30 p.m. for the ceremony.

“This conference is not about wishing for peace or marching for peace – this is about finding ways to actually create peace,” said Lynch, who has made such films as “The Elephant Man,” “The Straight Story,” “Blue Velvet” and “Mulholland Drive.”

Some of the speakers practice Transcendental Meditation and subscribe to the teachings of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, perhaps best known as the Hindu mystic guru to the Beatles in the 1960s. What unites the speakers is their wish for world peace and enlightenment.

“This is not a political rally, not in support of any candidate,” said event organizer Erin Skipper, a Maharishi University alumna.

“We want to educate people on different approaches to creating peace. We also want it to be inspiring. We’re going to have students performing, and cultural songs between the speakers.”

During phone interviews from Ithaca, N.Y., and Hollywood, respectively, Samite and Lynch expressed what they believe are recent events and issues that best underscore the need for world peace.

“The kids in Russia, that experience just killed me,” Samite said. “The kids should be playing, laughing and singing . . . they should not be in the middle of such bad things, fear and explosions.”

Samite grew up in the era of Idi Amin and other African dictators. He has visited refugee camps where the only thing traumatized children could respond to was music.

“There are over 300,000 children in the world being used as soldiers,” Samite said. “They see their friends and (relatives) die. If we’re going to fight, we should make sure children don’t have to be involved.”

Lynch’s recent mission has been to raise money for peace palaces and for a group of 8,000 meditators he said could be known as a “peace-creating factory.”

Lynch, who is also a painter and musician, said he believes strongly in a total positive energy to be used for peace.

“I am not a public speaker, but I am going to be there because I believe in this,” Lynch said of the peace conference. “I want peace to be put in place on this beautiful earth.

“There is suffering, violence, sorrow . . . making these things go away, who wouldn’t want that? Whether you’re in the Midwest or Asia?” Lynch asked.

Joining Lynch, Samite and Muller at the conference are John Hagelin, the director of the Institute of World Peace at Maharishi University of Management and president of the U.S. Peace Government; Maureen McCue, adjunct clinical professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and a member of Physicians for Social Responsibility, and Sue McGregor, professor and coordinator of the peace and conflict studies program at Mount Saint Vincent University of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Registration for the peace conference is free with a suggested donation. Go to www.creatingpeace.mum.edu for more information or to register, or call (641) 919-1898.

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