There is this scene at the end of The Phantom Menace where Qui Gon Jinn and Obi Wan Kenobi are fighting with Darth Maul. They come across this area where there are these energy doors (for lack of a better or geekier description – it’s late, I’m tired). Darth Maul runs through the hallway first and makes it through just as the series of doors starts to close. Qui Gon is first in line, and Obi Wan is further behind. Darth Maul paces in front of the doors waiting for them to open. Obi Wan also paces, waving his light saber around impatiently. What does Qui Gon do? He deactivates his light saber, kneels down and puts his light saber on his lap, closes his eyes, and meditates peacefully gathering his energy in preparation for the impending fight. As soon as the doors open, he jumps up, ready for action, chasing after the Sith Lord thus resuming the fight.
I have pondered on this scene time and time again, marveling at the different reactions between the young padowan, Obi Wan (rhyme unintended), and his Jedi Master.
Obi Wan is pacing, crazy, relying on instinct, eager to chase after this bad dude, while Qui Gon waits patiently, knowing that the doors will indeed open and that the fight will resume. I love how Qui Gon takes advantage of the time given him to gather his energy and his thoughts and further prepare for battle.
This makes me think about being older and wiser. I’m not that old or that wise, but I am older and wiser than I once was and hope to continue to grow in wisdom and be like the wise old Jedi Masters like Qui Gon, Yoda, and Obi Wan.
To have the wisdom to accept the situation at hand and use it to my advantage. To not fear death because it is not something I can control. To not fear anything that I can’t control and realize that the situation in front of me is out of my hands and there’s nothing I can do about it, so I need to not sweat it. To not over think things but realize that the power of the Force is in all of us. To meditate and find calm and peace when obstacles get in the way of my attempts to accomplish the thing I set forth to do instead of impatiently pacing and cursing and blaming others for getting in my way and turning myself in-side-out waiting for the doors of opportunity to open once again. To find peace in the chaos. To take a breath instead of getting myself wound up tighter and tighter thus causing me to react with my emotions and, in most cases, making the wrong decision.
As I have gotten older, I have achieved some of the necessary patience. Through my experiences in life I have learned to relinquish some control over the things that I can’t change, but to take responsibility for the things I can. I have learned to let go of the tight rein I try to have on my life and just breathe. It’s a rough journey and been a hard lesson to learn, and by no means have I completely leaned it, but I’m getting there.