So you decoded it…I recently saw la la land and the shack. But let the title serve its purpose. In the Shack Mack has a dream, or is it an experience? In la la land experience is trying to birth and give way to a dream.
Which brings me to ask…What is your reality? What is your reality today? What is your reality on Sunday morning? What is your reality on Friday night?
Let’s start with today. For me today was Fuck it! I could be a drug pusher and feel no remorse. That’s where my emotions were. Well strangely enough the day ended with me being a Christian pusher (one who is pushy) but now I feel remorse, fearing distancing myself from the one i love.
Philosopher Soren Kierkegaard said we are top to bottom creatures of emotion. So then should we listen to our emotions more as opposed to always trying to conquer them? Ah here’s the rub…within reason. So reason is king again?! Ah, I feel better again.
Back to the films…Both have guides. The Shack has the Holy Trinity. Hard to argue with that. La la land has Seb, a dreamer after Kierkegaard’s own heart. However the true dance in La La Land is initiated by the femme, coaxing a serious musician who is settling for a party band out of his comfort zone. But as the climactic actual dance on the hill is transpiring, Sebastian is starting to almost retaliate by encouraging her to pursue a dream of her own. Emotions certainly reign supreme as they wax and wane through career and relationship success and heartache.
So yeah, we got to dream big and work bigger to make sure we don’t wake up from the dream. Because in the end the dream is realized and we are left to wonder if the ends justified the fork in the road.
The theme of Mack’s struggle is coming to grips with sacrifice, and how sometimes you gotta tear out for something else and new and wonderful to grow. His emotions of bitterness are choking himself and his family. He once told a story about a princess who sacrificed herself for her tribe. Unbeknownst to him the wheels were set in motion to illustrate that same story in his life.
Mack’s reality is turned upside down by grace and his emotions are revealed to be the tools for forgiveness on many levels.
And there is our key. Live and die by your reason? Be ready to forgive and be forgiven. Soar to new heights with your emotions…or old depths until they get the best of you? Be ready to realize who and how you stepped on…and ask forgiveness. But don’t neglect to forgive yourself. Because yes Jim Morrison, sometimes “you gotta break on through…to the other side.”