WGP 042: Universal Lessons in Film – Self-Belief

In this podcast I’ll be exploring a Universal Life Lesson found in Motion Pictures:

  • I’ll explain how the Universe is always teaching you and giving you signs
  • I’ll talk about a few movies that deliver the same universal message
  • Finally, I’ll share how you can apply this universal teaching to your life


The Universe – it isn’t just a gigantic void or space filled with planets, stars, galaxies, and life. It’s also the biggest school in the universe. The biggest university you could say. This university is full of lessons and learnings that have been around since the very beginning and will be around long after the end. These lessons are like laws or principles that when you follow them give you happiness and health and when you ignore them or completely disregard them you feel horrible and unhealthy.

These universal lessons and messages are delivered in many different ways, an infinite number of ways in fact and the signs, they are everywhere and they’re always there. Whether the sign comes in the form of the weather, or other people, a bird through the window, or seeing the same set of numbers over and over again the Universe is always communicating with you.

The most prominent communication tool used by the Universe is your bodymind. Your bodymind is always talking to you giving you subtle cues and clues to the lessons the Universe is providing you. For me it took decades of feeling like crap and having a sick-prone body before I took the hint and learned a very important lesson – my body does not agree with gluten. It also took many many years of feeling lonely and angry at family and friends because I was 100% absolutely certain that I was right and that they were wrong before I learnt another very important lesson – my mind prefers love and connection over anger and isolation. Okay Universe, I finally got it. It took me a while, but I got it. Lessons learned thank you very much and of course I’m still learning new lessons every day.

For such an infinitely large school the Universe’s list of lessons isn’t anywhere near as big, which is why you see the same themes and ideas being retold time and again in different movies of different genres.

I’m going to focus on three of these morals that have been told in countless movies and I’m going to make this a 3-part episode series where I’ll talk about each universal lesson and the movies that tell its tale in its own podcast.

Oh yes before I begin talking about the first universal lesson spoiler alert! If you haven’t seen any of the movies I’ll be exploring in this 3-part series you might want to come back to these episodes after you’ve watched them. I’ll be talking about the Kung Fu Panda trilogy, Wizard of Oz, the original Star Wars trilogy, Lion King, Toy Story, and the Matrix trilogy.

Alrighty then life lesson from the Universe numero uno. I’ll be exploring this lesson in the context of the first Kung Fu Panda movie, Wizard of Oz, Star Wars: A New Hope, and The Matrix.

In Kung Fu Panda Po is a Panda and the unlikely choice as the chosen one who must learn Kung Fu in order to become the Dragon Warrior and save the village. He is told that a sacred scroll would reveal to him the secret to limitless power and that he would only be allowed to read the scroll once he was worthy. After a long time training in martial arts and kung fu Po got the scroll and what did he find? What was the secret to limitless power? What did the scroll contain? Nothing, it was blank. Actually it was made out of golden parchment paper and it did show Po’s reflection. Po didn’t see it at the time, but later understood that there is no secret to limitless power or becoming the Dragon Warrior. He is the Dragon Warrior as long as he believes it to be true.

And a quote from the movie:

“To make something special you just have to believe it’s special.”

In the Wizard of Oz Dorothy and her dog Toto are swept away home and all from their Kansas farm to another world called Oz where Dorothy is gifted a pair of ruby slippers after their farmhouse falls on the Wicked Witch of the East. Dorothy and Toto along with their new friends Scarecrow (who has no brain), Tin Man (who has no heart), and Lion (who has no courage) they all go on an adventure following a yellow brick road to find the all powerful Wizard of Oz who is the only one who can help them get what they are missing and get Dorothy and Toto back home. The Wizard asks them to defeat the Wicked Witch of the West before he will help them, but after Dorothy and her friends defeat the witch they find out that the Wizard isn’t even a real wizard and he can’t help them. Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion soon realise that they didn’t need the Wizard’s help after all as they showed more than enough smarts, heart, and courage when they faced the witch. Dorothy also finds out that the ruby slippers she was wearing could take her home anytime she wanted, but she had to first figure out for herself through her adventure that there was nothing out there more important than what she already had.

Quote from the movie:

“…if I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with!”

In Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope Luke Skywalker finds himself alongside an old Jedi Knight, a space pirate, a Wookie, and two droids on a mission to save a princess and the rest of the galaxy from the Empire. Luke finds out that his father used to be a Jedi Knight and begins his own training to become a Jedi. Part of this training involves learning how to connect with and use the Force, an invisible energy field that can be used for good or evil. Luke struggles to feel the force flowing through him, but continues his training. After saving Princess Leia the planet that the Rebels are based on is targeted for destruction by the Empire’s most powerful weapon, the Death Star. Luke joins the fight against the Death Star with the Rebel flight squadron and the only way to destroy the Death Star is by using the fighter’s own targeting computer system. A couple of attempts are made to destroy the Death Star using the computer system, but they all fail. Luke is reminded by his mentor’s voice to ‘use the Force’ and to ‘let go’. Luke realises that he can’t rely on the computer and that he has what it takes to get this job done. Luke relaxes into himself and takes the shot and score! He destroys the Death Star. A metaphysical nudge from his mentor and a second to pause and think is all Luke needed to believe he could do it, to believe that the Force was and is flowing through him.

A quote from the movie:

“The Force will be with you… always!”

Ah yes finally The Matrix my favourite movie of all of the times. It’s the future and the human race are slaves to intelligent self-aware machines. The machines use living human bodies as a source of energy, while the minds of these bodies are trapped in a virtual digital world known as the Matrix. Neo has been freed from this world of control and he’s been told that he is the only one that can stop the machines. Neo doesn’t believe this and even after he ‘knows kung fu’ he still has doubts. After visiting an Oracle that can see into the future Neo finds out that he isn’t the one after all.

After taking a massive risk saving his mentor and friend Morpheus, Neo now comes face-to-face with the machines toughest agents of control in the Matrix, called funnily enough an Agent. Neo is now faced with a choice – whether to stay and fight or run. All his training and even what he just learnt from the Oracle tells him to run, but for some reason he stays and fights. As another character Morpheus puts it, ‘he’s beginning to believe’. After putting up a good fight Neo realises he’s no match for the Agent and so he does run, but to no avail. Neo is killed by the Agent. Or is he? Yes the Neo full of doubt is dead, but a new Neo rises and this guy believes 100% no doubt about it that he is the one and knows this through and through and Neo takes out the Agent that killed him with ease. Once Neo killed off his old negative beliefs and doubts he was able to fully accept that he really was the one.

A quote from the movie:

“Don’t think you are, know you are.”

So what’s the lesson and common theme in all these films?

The protagonist or leading character goes on an adventure to find something. Throughout their journey they are learning and discovering more about who they are and what they’re capable of. Near the end of their journey they have a moment of clarity and realisation, which is if they believe and trust in their own abilities then there’s no need to go seeking for something out there as they have everything they need to accomplish great things within themselves already.

How you can realise and discover this belief in yourself?

One simple practice you can do are daily affirmations. Yeah a lot of people scoff at this idea, but this is the real deal people.

As Napoleon Hill author of Think and Grow Rich states:

“Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, the mind can achieve.”

By stating an affirmation as fact to yourself every day you begin to break up old neural pathways and patterns of thinking in your bodymind and you begin to create new pathways, new roads to success, you create new habits and you create a new way of being.

A daily affirmation I say to myself every morning I get out of bed no matter how I’m feeling, how hot or cold the temperature is, how sunny or wet it is outside, I say to myself:

“It’s another day in paradise.”

And immediately I just can’t help but smile.

Another affirmation I like to use especially if I’m feeling some self-doubt about my abilities or if I let someone else’s negative energy get to me is a quote from the movie Cool Runnings, but I change it up a bit. I say to myself or out loud:

“I am pride. I am power. I am a strong being of energy who shares love with everybody.”

Another affirmation I like to use every now and then is:

“I am happy, I am healthy, I am whole. I take my love wherever I go.”

Shout out to Holistic Health practitioner Paul Chek for that one.

A few tips about affirmations.

Daily affirmations can be done at any time of the day and as many times as you feel. But the secret to affirmations is this – you have to believe what you’re saying. Without belief words are powerless. With belief words become powerful.

Best way to enhance your belief is to visualise what you would look like, be like, and how you would be acting as if those words were true. Your mind doesn’t make a distinction between a physical event and a mental thought. They are one and the same to your bodymind.

Final tip is you must be consistent with your affirmation practise. By using daily affirmations with visualisation and a real belief in self and done consistently sooner or later without you even realising it, but others will see it for sure, you’ll have more pride and power and love to give than you thought you ever had inside of you.

I’ll leave you with this thought. Here’s another quote from the Matrix where Morpheus says to Neo:

“You have to let it all go… Fear, doubt, and disbelief. Free your mind.”

What are you freeing your mind from? You’re freeing your mind, yourself from limited beliefs, from the chains of old habits, old thoughts, old feelings, and old ways of being. Freeing your mind opens you up to new possibilities, new habits, new thoughts, new feelings, and new ways of being.

Free your mind and believe in what you already have right now and let that innate force of awesomeness that lives within you to flow freely and express itself.

From the day you come into this world, to this very moment as you listen to this, and to the day you leave this world you have everything you need to live an awesome happy and healthy life. You just need to begin to believe.

Here’s to the ultimate freedom – freedom of your bodymind.

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