Wednesday, January 2, 2019

The Jedi and the Messianic Hope

This post first appeared at the amazing Coffee With Kenobi.

This is my Christmas post.  Trust me for a bit on that.

Allow yourself to rise up.  Meditate on what it means, or the process by which, you can become greater than you have ever thought you could be.  Leave behind ideas of materialism, or even what pop culture offers as spiritualism.  Identify not with the crude matter, but give great psychological effort to becoming one with the Force, that the Force may become one with you.  If we can find clarity enough to look inside of our own souls we will find that there is a secret hope there, implanted by the Creator.  While the Jedi hoped for the Chosen One, we have a hope for the messianic.

Image result for anakin at council
The Hope of the Jedi was the Chosen One of the Prophecy.  Mace Windu did not speak broadly, but specifically.  Of all of the prophecies that the masters of the Force had uttered, this was THE ONE.  And it called for one knight who would rise up and bring balance, securing peace and tranquility for all.  True, George Lucas maintains that Anakin was the Chosen One, but that bothers me.  It affronts my desire and need for the redeeming messiah figure (which, I have said, is innate to humankind).  The messiah of the prophecy must fulfill the prophecy and cannot fail.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Seeing Star Wars Anew Again

This article was originally published at the venerable Coffee With Kenobi

Attack of the Clones was on TBS the other day. I dutifully and joyfully put it on. This under-appreciated episode of the Saga is much maligned, and I think that is wrong. While viewing this visually stunning masterpiece, I realized that I was reciting all of the lines along with the movie. Like some people sing along to “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Sweet Caroline” or “Frankenstein,” I find that speaking along with these movies is comforting and helps me to find new depth in them. So then the question arises: How can we see these movies for what they are, and not what we expect them to be? By this I mean an even more basic question. Can we ever see these movies new again?
For the past decade we have been treated to The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, each of which has offered new insights to Episode II (among other things); and I would say that it has made it an entirely different movie. So, I ask myself, can I see this movie fresh, or is it constantly going to be colored by preconceived notions that I, myself, bring to each viewing? What if I had seen Episode II after the various cartoon series? And if I had, what would have changed? Certainly not the cinematic output, but me. I would have changed with more insight, or having been at a different stage in my life.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Sympathy for Maul

Force and Faith: Sympathy for Maul 
Please allow me to introduce my subject.  He is a man of power and strength.  He’s been around for long, long years, and laid many a Jedi souls to waste.  Staring into our souls from every poster, every toy store peg and the merchandising for The Phantom Menace was this red devil instilling fear and unease.  His presence in the rise of the Sith is palpable, though his loss of usefulness caused his expulsion from the Sith.  But in the end, he is a cautionary tale for us who are buffeted by the pains of this world. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

The Royal Majesty Points to the New Hope

Force and Faith: The Royalty Majesty Points to the New Hope 
This past weekend saw a television and historical event that will be remembered for a generation or so — The Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markel, now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.  And in our modern echo chamber, you either loved it, had disdain for it, or did not even notice that it happened.  I would like to offer that most of us missed the point of why it mattered.  And it mattered because the fate of the Galaxy hangs in the balance, though not for reasons you may be thinking.

For 40 years we have been following the exploits of a Princess – how she saved her rescuers, how she rallied a Rebellion against evil, and the life we followed in the Legends novels.  We were thrilled when her King and father appeared in the prequel trilogy (and later!).  These admirable examples are the scope through which royalty, monarchy and headship ought to be viewed.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

The Joy in the Force

We are quite blessed in this renaissance era of Star Wars creativity.  When once we suffered through dark times, we are now embarrassed by riches and opportunity and a wealth of material.  These things make us happy.  Usually.  And the happiness can be expressed in our homes through killer posters or sweet action figure displays.
But each of these things is topical.  Either that is the depth of the engagement for a fan, or there is a potential rebirth of the soul, a nurturing of mankind’s inherent creativity available through finding the joy in the contemplation of this great mythology.
This is the chasm between happiness and joy.  Ice cream makes us happy, Porgs make us happy, and so on.  But each of these moments is fleeting, and does not necessarily leave a lasting sense of joy in our souls.  To find joy in happiness, one must enter deeper into the mysteries and lessons of a thing.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Luke Returns to Life as One with the Force

All that I have learned in my line of work is this:  Wisdom is eternal, truths are unchanging, and yet they find their eternal expression in temporal ways that can only be perceived by the limitations of mere humans.

Throughout my life, all stages, I had looked to Luke for a way to understand some family dynamics and other personal concerns as well.  But then recently, I met this grizzled old-timer on a harsh island that threw something besides salt over his shoulder.  He threw out the legacy of the past, the weight of which was crushing.  Now what do I do?!  On the heels of major family upheaval both in my own home and in that of my close family members, what do we do now?  Look to the eternal, look to what is inherently good, while participating as well as we can, acting out of profound lessons borne of anguish and effort.  How will Luke be judged in his eremitic state?  For me, as with the entire movie (and saga), I am challenged, called beyond my myopic vision, disabused of prejudice.  His actions are more highly evolved than I have even had a chance to give words to.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Go See This: Baptism in The Last Jedi
This is a very enthusiastic recommendation.

Monthly Blogger Ryder Waldron, over at the ever venerable Coffee With Kenobi, posted this excellent piece today.  Did you ever think about all of the water and fire imagery in Star Wars?  How it purifies, refines, and gives purpose to the heroes and villians?  Let Ryder illuminate it all for you in his excellent piece, Baptism in The Last Jedi.