The Red Pill or the Blue Pill – which will it be for you today? I love the movie The Matrix. A mythic tale about the Hero’s journey with a very contemporary twist. Neo, the Hero in the story, is a computer programmer by day and a hacker by night. He feels a profound emptiness in his life and can’t quite figure out what it is.
Enter Trinity. “It’s the question that drives us,” she whispers in his ear. He responds “What is the Matrix?” Those words have been alluding him for a long time, he could finally voice his big question.
Trinity says to Neo: “You’ve been down there, Neo. You already know that road. You know exactly where it ends. And I know that’s not where you want to be.” Here Trinity is talking about Neo’s feeling that the world is unreal, that there is something missing. He’s been searching for something – if he doesn’t follow Trinity and chooses to return to his normal life, he will never know whether he is awake or dreaming.
Neo chooses the red pill – which allows the freedom fighters to locate his real physical body in the power plant and they free him to begin his Hero’s journey.
Turns out Neo’s world has been an elaborate computer simulation called The Matrix and real human bodies are encapsulated and kept alive to power the machines which are in charge.
If you haven’t seen this movie, consider watching it. The messages are profound.
I think about this movie a lot. Maybe our world is not run by physical machines and maybe we aren’t living in a computer simulation – however, our world sometimes feels pretty close to the world portrayed in The Matrix. Many of us most of the time sort of run on auto pilot – conditioned by parents, society, politics, the news media, educational institutions, religions, blogs!
I stopped watching TV about 25 years ago. I also stopped reading newspapers and the like. The reason is because I don’t want to be programmed. I also don’t want to be programmed by religious dogma. I want to experience life – learn what life is about for myself – not second hand from a reporter or a priest. I want to be unplugged and free.
Back to the movie. Neo meets the Oracle – he is sent to her to find out if he’s “The One.” He thinks she is some sort of fortune teller. Actually she is a guide, helping him find his path. She can open some doors for Neo – he has to choose to walk through. The Oracle says to Neo: “No one can tell you you’re The One, you just know it.”
Once Neo begins to believe in himself and faces progressively greater challenges that he overcomes, he ultimately discovers he, in fact, is The One – he dies to his old identity and is reborn into The One who will lead the freedom fighters and overcome the machines.
So, the questions for each of us are: Will you take the red pill or the blue pill? And, are you The One?