Is Darth Vader In Us All?

Responsibilityby James Greenshields

We don’t fear freedom, we fear the responsibility that comes with it.

I once heard this and upon the realisation of it’s meaning, my life changed.

So then this evening I find myself talking to both my daughters about their choice of behaviour. Excited about being at Granny’s place they have been bouncing around and disrespecting each other in a power grab. Continually playing into each others hands and in the process becoming annoyed with each other.

Then I heard it …

“I didn’t make her feel that way, she chose to”.

My skin crawled.

Taken literally, this statement is fact. We cannot make anyone feel a certain way. They must choose based on their perception about the situation and generally a decision they make about themselves. A truly powerful statement when used by a balanced, respectful person means they engage their environment and people in it on their terms, not being buffeted about by what others think of them.


To use it in the context it was, was an attempt to dissolve herself of any responsibility to respect others. And to use the knowledge she has in that way is to turn to the ‘dark side’ of the force J Yes, and so we had a chat about Anakin Skywalker and some reasons why he turned to the dark side, even with the tutorage of the Jedi.

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Externalisation of blame is an attempt to abrogate personal responsibility. It’s often an attempt to manipulate others to your will, to get what you believe you want. Taken through to it’s natural conclusion, what you are actually saying is that you are not powerful enough to hold your power and gain your deepest desires. You disempower yourself of any true, respectful power in the situation, and in the process confirm your belief.

By externalising you limit your ability to truly know yourself. This leads to fear and the seeds of self doubt. Due to the habit of externalization, a person in doubt will look outside in an attempt to heal the doubt. Dependent on their mood, their doubts may or may not be suppressed. Suppression will only last for a period, and will return as the need for external recognition turns into a thirst. Whilst Anakin is truly powerful, his self doubt is seen in a belief of betrayal by all who love him. His greed, a symptom of externalization, and lack of true wisdom about himself, leads him to overestimate his abilities. Overestimation is an unbalanced position that regularly leads to a fall; and this fall confirms a belief that people/the situation/the world are against them and he is not good enough.

During the Awakening The Warrior Within Program we use the analogies of Missions versus Crusades. Crusades are disempowering action/thoughts/beliefs that cause imbalance and lead to pain. Missions are undertaken by true Warrior’s who serve a higher purpose than themselves and their thoughts/actions/beliefs empower all concerned. In our society today, missions are far harder to perform, as we’ve been led to believe that external measures of success that if not achieved mean failure.

What often happens in the New Age movement is people start the journey but get caught in their heads and Sir Ed Hillarybelieve their knowledge is the key, as opposed to allowing themselves to feel from the heart the wounds they harbour and let them go with forgiveness, humility and gratitude. They become self focused, understanding the cognitive aspect of statements like – you control how you feel, no one else; but use them as a shield from going to the emotional source of their own wounds. No matter how you discuss it with them, they’ll deflect any need to delve deeper by feigning knowledge of the issue, leaving you knowing something is not quite right; or that they’re full of shit.

As the old axiom states: knowledge only becomes wisdom once up into action. A state of higher consciousness only comes through allowing your knowledge to assist you feel the emotional side of your being fully, both the light and the dark, without attachment. Attachment is bred from fear; a fear of scarcity and as Anakin found out, leads to more pain.

So I found myself asking questions of my girls to affirm boundaries of respect and allowing the knowledge of responsibility to sit on their minds. They felt it’s heaviness and I didn’t shy away from letting them. They chose to feel pains of guilt and I didn’t attempt to remove them. What I chose was to show them love for who I know they are. Fully aware tomorrow they may chose the same path or a different path where boundaries maybe required again self in the knowledge as a Dad I’ve agreed to be the fencing contractor who ensures the strength of the fence.

So here’s to letting go of denying how we truly feel. And in the process empower ourselves and others to go from Good to Great.