Silence the Violence…

Silence the Violence…

by senior contributor Brendan Kownacki
Photo credit: Brendan Kownacki

“Hydration and meditation, that’s what keeps me young” said Katy Perry, the music superstar who has been an avid practitioner of transcendental meditation for 10 years. Perry headlined the “Silence the Violence” gala in Washington, DC with The David Lynch Foundation in support of the Meditation Center at TheARC.

Katy Perry

The David Lynch Foundation was started in 2005 by the film director of the same name who created the organization as a way to bring transcendental meditation to students in school. Lynch and many of his fellow TM fans think that the meditation practice is a way of calming the mind and bringing peace into your life, which is very fitting for the theme of  “Silence the Violence.” In 2018 the foundation helped to found the Meditation Center at THEARC to bring these methods to students in Southeast Washington.

Bob Roth

“There’s a wise old proverb that says ‘the world is my family,’ and if we subscribe to the statement that says ‘love thy neighbor as thyself,’ then we need to focus that proverb that the world is my family to ‘the district is my family,’ and that means that child suffering in the Southeast is as painful as a child suffering down the street,” said Bob Roth, President of The David Lynch Foundation. Roth’s point was that neighborhoods and wealth and social class can’t be a decider of which citizens should get top notch care and who should be left behind. Whether healthcare, violence in a community, or simply overcoming trauma, Roth and The Lynch Foundation hope that the mindfulness methods of TM can be a positive aide. “We celebrate the simplest, the oldest, easiest, and possibly the most effective way–meditation.”

Mavis Staples

The concert garnered thousands of attendees and raised money for the cause and included performances from Perry to Norah Jones who crooned from the piano and from Mavis Staples, who proved that 80 years young can still bring soul and spirit to any occasion that she attends.

Perry noted the difficulties of being young in today’s world and called Bob Roth a “champion” after mentioning that he was the one who taught her how to meditate a decade ago. “Twenty minutes a day, are you crazy?”  But then she realized it was a tool that could help bring clarity and balance and peace to her life and she said that it changed her life. “With everything we’re being served these days and all the noise and all the chaos and all the change and all the combat, and you’re like ‘how can I help?’ and ‘where can I start?'” She delighted the crowd with hits like “Chained to the Rhythm” – “Roar”- “Wide Awake” – and “Rise.”

Admitting that she has battled depression, the singer said that these trying times can knock you down but that it has to be about recovery and moving forward; “This is the number one thing that has brought me there…and helped with many hangovers,” joked Perry about reaching a place of clarity in her life before as a special finale of performance of her smash hit “Firework” that she performed along with a gospel choir.

Take a moment for silence in your day and think about meditating…but first, check out Katy Perry…

Katy Perry Talks Meditation: Video credit – Brendan Kownacki

Katy Perry Performs “Firework”: Video credit – Brendan Kownacki