Elevated Minds is a documentary feature film that follows Arjuna O’Neal and his mission to “bring inner peace to the streets” through his non-profit, Share Necessities, and Next Level CommUNITY center in South Central LA.
The release of the film will be accompanied by a social impact campaign focused on bringing the Share Necessities I Make it Count Mindful Leadership curriculum to schools nationwide, further developing Arjuna’s NextLevel CommUNITY Center as well as fostering the creation of more community centers across the country where there is need.
The film will focus on Arjuna’s story, his work to empower youth and help individuals utilize the tools of mindfulness to positively transform their lives, in spite of the challenges they face. Particularly awe-inspiring is the effect that this work is having on individuals with a history of gang involvement. Arjuna is working to cultivate inner and outer peace within these communities, rewrite the narratives of gang violence and help “rebrand” gang culture in order to empower individuals to recognize their own ability to self-determine and make choices that serve themselves, their families and their communities.
I specialize in social impact filmmaking through my production company, Conscious Cinema Co. As a filmmaker, I am passionate about telling authentic, complex narratives that break down societal barriers and have the power to reverse unconscious bias. Particularly in the current socio-political environment in America and the world at large, where individuals often meet those with different opinions and backgrounds with hatred and violence, I am motivated to capture moments cinematically that reflect our shared humanity, which transcend race, class, gender, background, politics and other forces that seek to divide us.
As a female filmmaker and survivor of sexual assault, abuse and harassment, I found a deep connection to Arjuna as a fellow trauma survivor. I am thrilled to be able to share the beauty and love I see in this story, Arjuna’s work and all of the individuals who are striving to help themselves and each other by integrating mindful teachings into their lives. Rather than reinforcing our differences, I hope this film will evoke empathy, make strides to elevate the global consciousness and inspire the individuals who see it to recognize our oneness and perhaps to replace their own fear with love, compassion, understanding and a deep, emotionally-driven desire to take positive action to create sustainable impact.
Light + love,