The Last Jedi. May the Force Be With Us All.

The latest episode of the Star Wars saga comes out in theaters this week. I haven't seen anything but the trailer, because I want to go into this episode open-minded. I'm excited (have had my tickets for almost a month) but feeling a bit apprehensive about what may go down in this LONGEST Star Wars episode EVER. I already have my sense of knowing what I think is going to go down, but I'll keep them to myself for now...

A Star Wars Inspired Outfit. May the Force Be With You.

Well, on second thought...I'll just say this...

If we could eliminate the whole good vs. evil dichotomy and just operate as ONE, we'd all be better off. We live in a world of contrasting opposites--up vs. down, left vs. right, black vs. white, male vs. female, democrat vs. republican, good vs. evil.

We exist in this constant (and IMHO "mentally ill" aka "INSANE,") battle of "right vs. wrong." 

Everyone has an opinion and fights to the death to try to convince the other to "join their side," when really, shouldn't we have a spirit of consensus and growing together? 

Constant debate and trying to encourage or force the other in seeing the other side is akin to a cancer cell, causing havoc and attacking the very body that gives it life. 

A Star Wars Inspired Outfit. May the Force Be With You.

For example, I was in church this past weekend, and the pastor made some well-intentioned, yet damaging statements regarding brain research in the field of psychology. He was talking about how brain research has shown that tithing/giving releases endorphins and increases "feel good vibes." He then said something to the effect of "Well, duh. They didn't make a new discovery, it's been in the Bible all along." 

Although this statement was most likely well intentioned, it creates a DIVIDE between the two groups. US (the pastor and "Bible-reading-believing Christians" vs. THEM (the "world," "academia"). This can be triggering/inflammatory to the "other side" and ultimately not the path of least resistance if we are to connect in "love with our brother." It also inherently and places the pastor/church in a position "above" the others who have a connection to God in a different way. When trying to reach an agreement or to build consensus, this approach runs counter to objectives of building bridges and trust between two very different groups of people. 

Instead of creating divides, the pastor could have built consensus by stating something like: "Psychologists have also verified this truth through research. For example...<some examples of research here>. We've linked some of this research on our website if you'd like to explore it more after the service."

Stating the facts with a neutral tone and providing opportunity for follow-up would provide people the space to discover the spirit that lives inside of them by forming an independent opinion regarding the matter. 

People see the world differently. And if it takes science and research and brain study for someone to connect with God, who are we to judge that process and say somehow our process is better or "more holy" than theirs? Who are we to assume the ways of God? Ultimately the brain is part of our body, which God made, so why constrain God to a book compiled by a European King decades ago? 

A Star Wars Inspired Outfit. May the Force Be With You.
A Star Wars Inspired Outfit. May the Force Be With You.

So, back to Star Wars, again, I'm looking forward, but am anxious to what this episode may hold. However, at the end of the day, I know IT IS WELL, aka, "it's all good" not because we have "already won," but because the "battle" was never real in the first place. 

A Star Wars Inspired Outfit. May the Force Be With You.
A Star Wars Inspired Outfit. May the Force Be With You.

Our "enemy" is in the mirror. 

The battle of good vs. evil lies within each and every one of us.

And the solution?

It lies within. 

May the FORCE be with you. 

The Last Jedi. May the Force Be With You.

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