Documentary Explores Meditation - Yoga Journal

Documentary Explores Meditation

Elena Brower in On Meditation

There have been studies galore cropping up recently about the benefits of meditation, supporting a wide array of claims from health benefits and higher test scores to even how meditation affects political views. It’s clear that meditation is an amazing tool that helps people in many ways, but no matter how many studies prove its benefits for so many who know little about meditation it can seem daunting and out of reach. A documentary called "On Meditation: Documenting the Inner Journey," which is now in production, aims to change that by telling the stories of people with very different backgrounds who have one thing in common: their meditation practice helps them cope and makes them better at what they do.

“Through these portraits, we begin to understand that meditation isn't something that can only happen in a Buddhist temple after years of study; anyone can meditate anywhere,” says the Kickstarter page attempting to raise $50,000 for the project. In keeping with the mission to make meditation mainstream, for every advance copy of the film backed through the Kickstarter campaign a copy will be donated to an institution serving people who might not have access otherwise. The money raised with go toward production of the first five interviews, which producers say will be the first in a series of documentaries on the topic.

Film producers have already interviewed author Peter Mattheissen, actor Giancarlo Esposito, Buddhist monk the Venerable Metteyya, yoga teacher Elena Brower, and Congressman Tim Ryan, who recently described his meditation practice to The Columbus Dispatch. “You realize how much better your days are, how much better your relationships are because you’re actually there for them,” Ryan said. “Then you start to realize how much energy you can waste by fretting about future or regretting things in the past that we just carry with us.” Film director David Lynch and author Gabrielle Bernstein have also agreed to be interviewed.

Brower, who is an executive producer on the project, recently wrote about her meditation practice on The Huffington Post. “Sometimes my meditation happens in my son's room, surrounded by his toys after he's fallen asleep,” she wrote. “The locale is of no consequence; it's the intent to be quiet and receptive that matters.”

Do you think getting a glimpse at how meditation helps people in many different stations in life will inspire more people to take up the practice?

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