I didn’t realize it at first but I had a tremendous fear of speaking and was very out of touch with my emotions. If something deeper got revealed I was afraid of my world falling apart. Movies have helped me get in touch with my emotions in a safe way. The perfect one is given at the right time to see what I need to.

I have been terrified of relationships and held up a mask of strength to project confidence but it left me feeling distant. With movies I don’t have to hold up a mask, and even better I can go see Leonardo in “The Great Gatsby” act out my desires and ultimately reveal my unworthiness. After each reveal, I feel a deeper experience well up inside of me. I then want to practice all that I learned in my ‘real’ relationships to extend it.

Whether movies lift me up or stir me up, I get in touch with the tricky places inside that need healing. There is no need to find a spiritual teacher or hire a life coach. I rent a hundred million dollar movie, sit back, eat some popcorn and watch my emotions. I squirm as I watch characters get jealous or say things they shouldn’t. The healing happens and I don’t necessarily have to play it out myself. I will attract whatever is needed to heal somehow. Movies save time.

Sometimes it takes a little patience. Last night I saw Ellen Burstyn in the 1980 movie ‘Resurrection’. She healed a paralytic woman but ended up taking on the sickness. I felt immobilized and even a sense of shock, so I paused the movie and took a walk outside to look at the stars. With a little distance, I could see my own tendency to take on my friend’s problems in an attempt to help. With each passing day, I see more and more how to be truly helpful.

The real healing happens when the emotions are fresh and in the moment. It is a retraining because most of us want to get lost in a movie. What I am sharing here involves being conscious and invoking a willingness to not get lost. If you are alone, it can be easier to stop and feel what is happening inside of you. Yet movie watching with others can bring a whole new depth to relationships. The first time I paused the movie “The Island” with my friends, they reacted impatiently. But after realizing that the false fantasy of the island was future happiness, we all felt the depth.

I would start with the movies you are attracted to because healing happens through attraction. Blockbusters are blockbusters for a reason. They touch something deep down. You may have to look for it but it is there. Take Twilight Breaking Dawn 2. Bella reveals the protective shield of neutrality she has received as a gift. Asked how it came upon her and all her vampire friends acknowledge the unknown. Developed, this shield renders useless any attack on her or her chosen ones. I watched Bella extend her shield around her partner Edward and felt my own inner strength rise up for the next wave of ego self hatred. This encouraged me all night.

There are many movies that reveal the truth with very direct story telling. Solaris, the Truman Show and The Matrix all provide alternate realities where the characters find a way out. They remind us of something deep inside that was locked away long ago. These stories stay with us and remind us that freedom is possible.

Any reaction to a movie is an opportunity to see where we still believe in some pain inside or it would not affect us. Dramas, religious films, and even documentaries provide rich backdrops to see our reactions. We can focus internally instead of judging the content or quality of film making. A whole new world opens up to letting a real message be delivered as if the characters are speaking right to us. The perfect line can come at any time.

Somebody somewhere has gone through whatever I am going through. We all relate to basically the same challenges at the core. That is why movies are made. They deliver a message or reflect something inside of us. If it is karmic thought playing out then we can see it for what it is, take responsibility and let it go. If it is a perennial inspired idea, then I can let it transform me from the inside. Either way, this is a powerful path to remembering the Truth of Who we are.

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About the author

David Hoffmeister

Modern-day mystic, author, and a living demonstration of A Course in Miracles.

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