This week’s guest post is from Stephen Parrish
Listen closely to the background music in any movie where there is a person who is destined to be a hero. I’ll use Star Wars here as my example. If you take note of Luke Skywalker’s inspirational theme (Binary Sunset), there is a sad and mournful quality to the music itself being played as it describes the character. I still get teary eyed every time they play that piece when a victorious Luke takes a torch to the body of Darth Vader on that funeral pyre at the end of Return of the Jedi. It’s a tear jerker for sure, and John Williams knew this. He knew when he wrote that musical score that we as an audience needed to hear that. It’s part of our journey.
Although Luke won his battle, finished his training and became a Jedi knight, and watched as the dark figure that was his father redeem himself by defeating his emperor, Luke still cried at that single moment when everything precious to him, everything he had ever wanted and hoped for and that meant the entire galaxy to him, in an instant went up in smoke and was gone. It wasn’t until Luke was reunited with his friends during the victory party on Endor that the music became upbeat and lively to prove to the audience that the good guys had won, that the bad guys had lost, and Luke could finally see the victorious outcome of his efforts when he witnessed his father victorious in the force. Cue the happy ending.
In this life, every one of us have our own personal journeys and must face our own particular demons so as to fulfill our own private destinies. To become the heroes. Just like Luke did during his final battle when he was faced with his decision being tempted to “join the dark side”, or to allow his pains to make him stronger. To fulfill him. To become the coveted “Jedi”.
Take notice of the soundtrack of your own life in that it is evident in how you live. As happy as you would like to be and to present yourself before the world, if you too could hear the music being played in your own back ground, you also would hear sad, contemplative sounds of a melancholic, lonely life that just wants to be loved. To find fulfillment. This is quite natural. And it is those quiet, silent melodies that gives to you the power of not only sympathy, but empathy with others. To share your stories so you might give rise to inspire the next generation. Yes, life is hard, but you must press on! you must endure!
We all need to let go of our worries and fears and not allow them to bother us, but we should borrow from them so that we will learn our lessons of value. When we embrace our fear, we overcome. When we embrace our hurts, we love more. Boy, do I have some sad stories to tell, but I’d rather you hear that which forges me into the hero I’m supposed to be. And likewise, I would like to hear that same thing from you. We all have to go through our own trepidations and darknesses, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death”, but it wasn’t meant for us to live there.
Being the kind of person that I am, I listen to the lyrics more than I do the tunes, and I’ve discovered a strange oddity in most of the songs that I’ve reviewed. That is that although the songs may be upbeat and get you moving, music that you can dance to, the majority of the words being sung are born out of personal struggles and of the artist themselves, questioning life. Which proves my point. Life is a paradox. We can’t really enjoy the happy without the sad. We can’t truly appreciate the truth without the lies. We need our tears just as much as we need our smiles. We need these things. Desperately! And it’s up to us. We can choose whether we will live happily ever after, or not. But to get to the end of our story, we must begin the journey. Expect the pitfalls and the heart breaks. Every one of us will experience them, no question. It’s how we persist and persevere through them that will, in the end, prove us to be victorious.
Guest blogger Stephen Parrish