Director X is taking the steps to help solve Toronto’s gun violence issue by launching his new company, Operation Prefrontal Cortex, alongside his founding partner, Danell Adams. According to the company’s website, it is described as “a community partnership and a resource for those who want to see change in our communities.”
With the help of local artists, including Zenesoul, X has announced the arrival of a new guided meditation series where viewers can participate in five-minute guided exercises to support their mental health. Following his own experience after being shot in 2015, X has been fervent about preventing further violence and implementing the practice of meditation. The acclaimed director hopes to make meditation a norm in an effort to decrease the violence in his hometown, considering the gravity of the issue to be “life and death.”
“You know, meditation can be intimidating,” he explained to Complex. “Some people, they hear the word meditation and say, ‘How do I do that, is it going to be wrong, do I need to clear my mind…’ You know, all the preconceived notions. And to be honest as well a lot of Black people, a lot of people of colour, don’t perceive it as something that’s open to them. [That’s] not to say… there’s clearly tons of Black folks that meditate. And we wanted to make that clear.”
He added, “You know, I have a friend who, I gave him my guided meditation, the one I do. Then he got into this kind of Whim Hof breathing, [a] technical kind of breathing meditation. [He] loves it, it’s changed his life. He’s got everyone doing it and preaching all about it. So this was what we were looking to find, this kind of attention. This has been what we’re looking to do. The [Operation Prefrontal Cortex] co-founder Danell Adams has been talking about this a lot and finally just got tired of waiting for the rest of us to get it done. [He] just got to it and started shooting these things. Hopefully, people really get a chance to see how easy it is and find something that works for them.”
Zenesoul chimed in, focusing on the significance of meditation. “Meditation is something that is often times overlooked but is so important. Taking time to be still is very important, especially with everything that has been going on around us. It’s hard to find moments where we’re not thinking about our problems and stressors. Inflation, COVID, violence, just so much happening at once. By taking time to breathe [and] relax the mind and body, we are actually allowing ourselves to refresh. Doing this meditation is one of my ways of using my voice. I’ve been told many times that it’s soothing,” she says. “Using it to help the community and bring about awareness for mediation was a no-brainer for me. [I’m] so glad I could be part of the team to bring this series to life.”
Watch the first installment of the meditation series below.