Lessons From Dagobah

Star Wars is my absolute favorite childhood fad! I had all the different lightsabers, plastic ships, and the battle strategies for taking down the empire!

As a kid striving to be good and to be helpful to the world, I was inspired by Luke Skywalker and I wanted so much to be a Jedi!

As an adult, I not only get to wrap myself up in the warm blanket of nostalgia, but I get to continue to be inspired by those movies.

Specifically by one little green alien on the planet Dagobah!

Yoda, though just a lovable and quirky puppet, continues to be a major voice of wisdom. He speaks very jumbled English, but he communicated truth in a profound way. Luke was faced with the following lessons and challenges, as have I, and hopefully so shall you.

Be Present – Yoda critiqued Luke for being caught up in the future and not having mindfulness of the present. Luke was constantly looking for the next step and the next level without stopping to see if he was getting the current step right.

Life is happening around us, yet we often miss out on it.

Who will I date next? When I get Married? Now that I’m promoted, how do I get the next one? What car will I get next, how many kids will I have?

We load our minds with questions and worries, failing to stop and see what we already have. Not putting your mind in the moment at hand results in missed opportunities, ingratitude, and eventually regret.

The past is intangible and the future does not yet exist, so live in reality and not in the shadowy dimensions that lie before or come after.Life is fast enough as is. Try not to rush through it.

Hard Work and Resolve – Moving on the theme of patience, Luke found out really quickly that discipline takes time, and mastering the four elements…(oh wait, wrong show…) Mastering the force, the lightsaber, and all the things that culminated into becoming a Jedi Master weren’t something that came overnight. There was far more exercising than most of us would care to do, as well as focusing the mind intensely, and *shutter* the facing of one’s self!

Yoda made it clear that if Luke were going to succeed, he was going to have to make a choice. Luke needed to have resolve to push through the pain to become what he desired to be. In the same way, if we are to grow into being the best that we can be we must turn our desires and emotions into resolve to thus accomplish that goal.

Learn From Failure – Lastly (and this is the biggest one), Yoda gave Luke opportunities to fail. And did he fail! He failed a lot. Hell, he lost a hand because of it! But it was his failures that led to his ultimate growth. He found strength and understanding through it. Yoda reminds Luke of his experiences. It pushes them in front his face, not to tear him down and keep him suppressed, but to force him to face his weaknesses so he can make them strengths.

Failure sucks. I hate it. This year alone has been the greatest yield of failures that my fail farm has ever produced. Yet, as a result, I am stronger, healthier, and wiser than I have ever been. Yoda (and Luke) remind me to not let my failures rule me, but instead to let them grow me even more into that place of resolve.

I’m never going to be a Jedi. At least, not the mystic Force-wielding sense. I will, however, stay the course and push through every trial that I am led into. I will take these three lessons and let them mold and grow me into the guardian of life and truth that I want, and can, be.

Will you?




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