What if you are the Oracle?
There’s a scene in The Matrix (a beloved #90s classic) where Neo, the protagonist, goes to see the Oracle.
When Neo first enters the waiting room, he encounters a young boy sitting on the floor with a row of spoons before him. The boy picks one up, closes his eyes and appears to focus really hard as the spoon droops to the side, mirroring Neo’s reflection.
The boy hands the spoon to Neo and says:
Do not try and bend the spoon, that’s impossible. Instead, only try to realize the truth… there is no spoon. Then you’ll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.
Neo ponders this as he attempts to bend the spoon himself. Just as it starts to bend, it’s his turn to see the Oracle.
The Oracle isn’t quite what he expects. She’s an older woman who smokes cigarettes, bakes cookies, and is a bit sassy.
He’s come to see the Oracle to find out if he is the One. He has his doubts and she knows it.
So when she’s ready to tell him what he came for, she says, “You already know what I’m going to say.”
Neo replies, “I’m not the One.”
“Sorry, kid.” she says.
But notice, she never told him that he wasn’t the One.
He had already decided he wasn’t.
Oof. Can you relate?
I was thinking about this movie, and this scene in particular, because of how so often we decide that we are not the one.
We are not the one who can be that person.
We are not the one who can do that thing.
We are not the one who can have that desire.
It can be so easy to give up on ourselves. It’s much harder to believe in ourselves.
Believing requires imagining something we don’t think is possible. Yet.
We may seek help from trusted friends, mentors, and guides. Or Google.
They have potential answers, they have ideas. They may also have bias and judgment.
I recently made a really hard decision to leave my job. I had a long line of people who had opinions, perspectives, and advice about this plan. And with that, plenty of my own doubts.
I think one mentor said it best, “One day you will just get up from your desk and be done.”
She was right.
To quote the Oracle: “you already know what I’m going to say.”
You get to choose. You have free will. You already know. (Imagine that!)
- Is there something in your life that you are currently waffling on? Are you stuck between two (or more) paths wondering which one to take? Are you waiting for someone to choose for you? Let them choose, and then see how you really feel.
- What do you currently believe about yourself? Write it down. When you look at that list, what do you want to believe about yourself? What are you ready to discard? What are you ready to add?
- Think about a time you knew what to do and didn’t need outside advice. What was the situation? What was the outcome? How can you do more of that?
- What’s your truth?
You are the oracle.