Geeky Stoics Book Club: Fellowship of the Ring
How to claim your spot | Obi-Wan's crisis of faith
Straight to the point this week: You should join the Geeky Stoics Book Club!
Sold? Then just fill in the two-question Google Form and I’ll email you the Discord and Google Meet invite directly!
We're excited to introduce the Geeky Stoics Book Club, where we’re kicking off 2024 with a 4-week exploration of Tolkien's Legendarium reading Fellowship of the Ring and getting together each week to discuss. The community asked for this, and so longtime supporter of Geeky Stoics, Zach Yost, will be helping facilitate the weekly discussions alongside us.
Tolkien is my first and greatest geek love and I can’t wait to
drag welcome Stephen into the fold….or you could say, Fellowship.
When: Ongoing weekly conversations on Discord and Google Hangouts, Sundays in January @ 4 pm ET
What: Weekly discussions on the meaning of Tolkien’s work
Special Guests: (To be announced)
Week 1: Chapters 1-6
Week 2: Chapters 7-12
Week 3: Chapters 1-6 (Book Two)
Week 4: Chapters 7-10 (Book Two)
Dive into Middle-earth's wisdom with us. Sign up here or simply reply "I'm in!" to this email.
Now, on to a Star Wars lesson
Guilt will devour you if you let it.
I was recently a guest on the Geek Out Loud Patreon podcast where my friend Steve Glosson and I talked about Star Wars, specifically the topic of Obi-Wan Kenobi. I happen to believe that Obi-Wan’s journey in the self-titled Disney Plus series is the most impactful Star Wars story since Disney's takeover here’s why:
Obi-Wan's Crisis of Faith
Obi-Wan Kenobi is a character whose moral compass remains unwavering. However, like all of us, he faces moments of doubt and crisis. This is where we find him in the TV series, grappling with all the feelings of guilt over what happened to Anakin Skywalker. Obi-Wan's crisis of faith was not caused by his actions, but rather by the choices made by his former padawan.
Guilt Without Responsibility
There’s an important lesson here. Obi-Wan, despite his strong sense of guilt, was not responsible for Anakin's fall to the dark side. Anakin's choices and actions ultimately led to his transformation into Darth Vader. Obi-Wan could not have prevented it, and he should not bear the burden of guilt for another's choices. But he isn’t ready to accept this yet.
The Burden of Guilt
Guilt is a heavy burden to carry, and it often stems from our misperceptions of responsibility. Remember, we are only responsible for our actions and decisions. While we can influence and guide those we love, we cannot control their choices. When guilt is based on a false sense of responsibility for someone else's actions, it becomes a weight too great to bear.
This is the moment: A poignant, heartbreaking exchange when Darth Vader declared in a vengeful, rasping voice…
"You didn't kill Anakin Skywalker. I did."
This statement carries deep meaning. Anakin's selfish desire for control was the root of his transformation into Darth Vader. Obi-Wan should not and could not carry the guilt for that transformation.
Kenobi finally recognized what he would later tell Luke Skywalker, “a young Jedi named Darth Vader, who was a pupil of mine until he turned to evil, helped the Empire hunt down and destroy the Jedi knights. He betrayed and murdered your father.”
We must recognize our limitations and understand that we cannot control the choices of others. We are only responsible for our actions.
Remember, your focus determines your reality. Let that not be one of endless guilt and self-punishment.
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For a video related to this lesson, try out our explainer on the Ahsoka series. Her character undergoes a similar journey with guilt, bringing her face to face with Anakin Skywalker.