GREAT Morning Beloved!
THE WISDOM OF YODA
We are winding down with summer, unfortunately or fortunately….however you look at it – and also with our summer series on the Lessons learned from Science Fiction and Fantasy in all its forms.
I have especially loved this journey because this is one of my interests. Too bad we didn’t come across a dragon or two…then we really would have had some fun!
This week we explore the Wisdom of Yoda. Let’s look a bit at wisdom.
The dictionary defines wisdom as knowledge and good judgment based on experience; being wise.
Wise implies having knowledge and understanding of people and of what is true and right in life and conduct; and showing sound judgment in applying such knowledge.
In ‘The Twelve Powers of Man’, Charles Fillmore writes that, “Wisdom includes judgment, discrimination, intuition, and all the departments of mind that come under the head of knowing.”
Wisdom is making wise choices. The spiritual power most often associated with wisdom is love. In fact, the apostle assigned to the power of Wisdom is James, the brother of John, the apostle representing Love.
The combination of wisdom and love is a clear example of the connecting of head and heart. Wisdom without love can become academic. Love without wisdom can become co-dependent; and we end up making unwise choices.
James Trapp, former President and CEO of Unity Worldwide Ministries once said, “There is information that informs and then there is information that transforms.”
Together, wisdom and love help us to move beyond ourselves, beyond what we thought we were capable of. Wisdom and love help us to see beyond appearances.
Which brings us to the wisdom of Yoda
Luke was being trained by Yoda in the ways of the Force.
The WAYS of the Force…..it seems mystical, doesn’t i? It’s more than a feeling, the Force is a life-style.
There are so many wonderful lessons to be learned from Luke’s relationship with Yoda.
First, we learn, along with Luke, that wisdom doesn’t always look like we think it will. Luke is looking for a great Jedi master in The Empire Strikes Back and impatiently demands that Yoda take him to his new teacher. It never even occurs to Luke that this little green troll is, in fact, that master.
How often we assume that wisdom will come in a pretty package and tell us what we want to hear.
Yoda’s training of Luke is comprehensive. He not only focuses on teaching him about the metaphysical nature of the Universe and the Force, he also trains Luke’s physical body and encourages him to look into his heart for answers.
Yoda was truly a holistic teacher, recognizing the connection between body, mind and spirit and supporting Luke to grow and develop his skills in all three areas.
Yoda teaches Luke that the cave he fears to enter holds the treasure that he seeks. While in Luke’s case there was a literal cave, we all have our own metaphorical caves that we are afraid to enter, right?
I believe Eleanor Roosevelt said, “Do one thing every day that you are afraid of.”
If you think that is impossible, the Queen of Hearts in Alice in Wonderland said, “Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
We need to face our fears.
Yoda taught Luke that he needed to unlearn what he had learned. Luke needed to say – “I don’t know”.
Again, how true this is for all of us!
Luke’s head was so full of what he thought he knew that he couldn’t take in what Yoda was trying to teach him. He had a preconception about what his Jedi master would look like and had to let go of that in order recognize Yoda.
He thought being a Jedi meant fighting great battles in great wars. Yoda laughed at this idea, and at Luke… “Ohhh! Great warrior! Wars not make one great!”
Yoda uses his own appearance to teach Luke some valuable lessons. In one exchange, Yoda admonishes Luke to see beyond appearances, to recognize that might doesn’t make right and bigger isn’t always better.
In an important scene of the movie, “The Empire Strikes Back”, Yoda is encouraging Luke to lift his fighter out of the swamp. Luke tries, and gives up, complaining that it can’t be done!
Yoda: Always with you it cannot be done. Hear you nothing that I say?
Luke: Master moving stones around is one thing, this (the ship) is totally different.
Yoda: No, no different. Only different in your mind. You must unlearn what you have learned.
Luke: Alright, I’ll give it a try.
Yoda: No, try not. Do or do not. There is no try.
When Luke has failed to lift his ship out of the water, he complains that the ship is too big.
Yoda explains, “Size matters not. Look at me, judge me by size do you, hmmm? And well you should not, for my ally is the force, and a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the force around you, here! Between you, me, the tree, the rock! Yes, everywhere! Even between the land and the ship.”
Luke: You want the impossible.
Yoda then lifts the ship out of the water with a wave of his hand…
Luke: I don’t believe it.
Yoda: And that is why you fail.
This is our challenge also, is it not?
Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter We are spiritual beings having a human experience. Who knew Yoda was Unity! Truth is truth and wisdom is wisdom, regardless of the source.
In this exchange, Yoda is trying to teach Luke about the holographic nature of the Universe. Yoda knew that moving the rocks and moving the ship were the same thing. He knew that doing the smallest thing with intention and focus can make the biggest of shifts.
Where can this principle fit in your life?
Yoda teaches about being positive about what you can do, no negativity.
Yoda also urged Luke to take his training, his destiny, seriously.
He told Luke, “A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind” and admonished him that if he took the quick and easy path, he would become an agent of evil.
One of Yoda’s greatest challenges in training Luke was dealing with his youthful impulsiveness, his wanting to know everything right now!
Again, how true this is of us as human beings. So often we want to go from A to Z, without going through the steps, through the journey, that it takes to get there.
And enjoying the journey along the way.
One of the questions many people ask is how to tell the difference between our Inner Voice of Wisdom and what we often call monkey mind… especially when our monkey mind seems so persuasive!
Here are some clues…. Monkey Mind is right, righteous, rigid, defensive, cynical, no possibility, others are wrong, humorless, self-interested, and basically concerned with survival. There is always fear that something could go wrong. There is a closing around the heart, a sense that you won’t make it. If you feel “I have to get this done right away,” it’s Monkey Mind.
Remind you just a little bit of the Luke that first came to Yoda?
Our Inner wisdom, on the other hand, is open, possibility, compassionate, and spaciousness. It is characterized by generosity of spirit, gentle humor, and opening around heart.
Remind you a little bit of Yoda?
Yoda taught Luke that “You will know the good from the bad (or wisdom from monkey mind) when you are calm, at peace.”
Luke was consumed with a sense of urgency, of wanting to do everything right now and therefore wasn’t able to hear his inner voice of wisdom.
Yoda, like all the great masters, taught that we have to become quiet to hear that still small voice of Wisdom that we all have…. that still small voice that helps us to make wise decisions.
Yoda also taught Luke that he had to choose which side of the force he would serve. He warned Luke that the Dark Side was very seductive… “Beware of the dark side. Anger…fear…aggression. The dark side of the Force are they. Easily they flow, quick to join you in a fight. Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will…”
Once we start down the path of making decisions based on fear, consume us it will… so what are we choosing?
You remember the great little story about a Cherokee grandfather and his grandchildren…
An elder Cherokee was teaching his grandchildren about life. He said to them, “A fight is going on inside me. It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves.
One wolf represents fear, anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
The other stands for joy, peace, love, hope, sharing, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, friendship, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.
This same fight is going on inside you, and inside every other person, too.”
The children thought about it for a minute and then one child asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
What wolf are we feeding? “Choose this day who you will serve.”
We know that Heaven and Hell are not actual physical places, but states of mind that we create.
Are our choices creating Heaven or Hell? Are we using the Force for good and standing for peace, love, hope, joy and truth, or are we walking down the dark side of fear, anger, sorrow, greed and regret?
Matthew Fox wrote, “When we are joyous and full of heart, we are emanating wisdom. Wisdom is not in the head but in the heart and gut where compassion is felt.”
I think Yoda would agree
Here are a few more Yoda wisdom tidbits:
“Hmm! Adventure. Hmmpf! Excitement. A Jedi craves not these things.” A Jedi lives to serve and protect, not to seek out danger and risk, unless it’s in the name of the Force.
Sometimes we look for excitement instead of wisdom, can’t we have both?
“Ready are you? What know you of ready?” As Yoda tells young Luke, most of us think we’re ready before we really are, as we’re always looking for shortcuts or an easy way out.
Sound familiar? Oh youth….
“All his life has he looked away…to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? On what he was doing.” Yoda tries to tell Luke about the dedication that a Jedi must possess. The philosophy here is about dedication to an ideal.
Personal responsibility. You are choosing what is important in your life, what drives your integrity
“Twilight is upon me, and soon night must fall. That is the way of things.” This is part of Yoda’s death speech to Luke. We must accept that we will come to an end one day.
We must make the best of the DASH between our birth date and date of our transition. Mine will be 10/1/1949 – ?
HOW will you fill your DASH?