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Suffering impedes creativity: David Lynch dispels common myth
by Global Good News staff writer
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6 November 2012
On a speaking tour that brought David Lynch to 16 countries worldwide, which is now the subject of his documentary 'Meditation, Creativity, Peace', Mr Lynch often spoke about his creative process.
Mr Lynch has made clear in the past his stance that suffering impedes rather than benefits creativity, but while in Brazil he had an opportunity to speak eloquently on the subject.
A journalist in Porto Alegre, Brazil, asked Mr Lynch, 'You have said that suffering affects creativity in a negative way. How could you explain that artists like van Gogh and Artaud, for example, have produced such great works of art having suffered so much? If they meditated, would that unbalance the genius of their work?'
Mr Lynch appreciated the depth of the question. 'This is a very beautiful, important question and this is part of the myth I think,' he said.
Mr Lynch continued, 'Van Gogh did suffer. He suffered a lot. But I think he didn't suffer while he was painting. He went out to paint because he loved to paint and it might have been one of the only happy times in his life when he was painting.
'I know van Gogh would have been happier if he had been able to transcend, dive within, and I know his work would have been as good or even better. It stands to reason,' Mr Lynch added, referencing his own positive experience with Transcendental Meditation over more than 30 years.
He explained his rationale, 'The more you suffer, the less you want to create. If you're truly depressed, they say you can't even get out of bed, let alone paint. If you're truly angry, it occupies the whole brain, poisons the artist and poisons the environment. [There is] little room for creativity.' He gave the example, 'If you have a splitting headache' and are feeling very ill on top of that, 'how much work are you going to be doing and how much are you going to enjoy it?'
Mr Lynch concluded with his strategy to improve creativity using Transcendental Meditation: 'Give the person a technique to lift that sickness, lift that negativity, and enjoy life.'
© Copyright 2012 Global Good News®
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