Darth Vader, the Dark Lord of the Sith loomed large over me when I first watched Star Wars in 1977. Hissing and seething inside his helmet, he scared me, maybe even scarred me for life, when he clutched at Captain Antilles’ throat, lifted him off the floor and flung him like a unwanted rag doll after throttling him to death. Darth Vader sounds very much like death, invader. The Sith Order is depicted as an ancient monastic force with supernatural fighting abilities, hell bent on intergalactic domination. They would have to stamp out the Jedi Order to achieve supremacy over the galaxies. Lately though, Veda haunts me. The Veda, for orthodox Indian theologians, are revered revelations seen by ancient sages after long periods of intense meditation. Was Vader named after Veda? Could George Lucas have been well versed with the Vedas from the beginning of Star Wars? Could the tragic palpable demise of Vader, consigned to the deepest abyss of despair by Palpatine, the Sith Master, Emperor of the Empire be a warning to all humanity not to ignore the teachings of the Vedas? The Vedas are religious texts from ancient India, they form the oldest scriptures of Hinduism, not of a man, and authorless.
Bikash, is this a vendetta? Did we fight like Vader and Kenobi when we were kids? I have been restless, wrecking my mind, ever since you informed me about Vedanta. It is a concept too big and way too deep for me to grasp. Wikipedia for once, sounded unbelievable to me. Vedanta literally means “end of the Vedas“, reflecting ideas that emerged from the philosophies contained in the Upanishads, ancient texts in Sanskrit, sitting next to the teacher, receiving spiritual knowledge. The end of the Vedas? The Vedas cannot succumb to a higher force! Schools of Indian philosophy that treat the Vedas as their source of scriptural authority are classified as orthodox. Irrespective of whether they are orthodox or not, the texts in The Vedas discuss the same concepts and form the spiritual core of Hinduism. Bikash makes more sense. Rather than “end of the Vedas”, Vedanta is actually Veda (knowledge) and anta (at the end), meaning complete knowledge or the absence of ignorance. “When we discover our true self, we will discover the purpose of our existence.”
Earlier, I wrote that the physical throttling of a soldier to death in Star Wars scared me. It was the display of utter evil and power that troubled me. Where was the loyalty to his men? The compassion? The forgiveness for failure? The unnecessary execution of a soldier? That the Lord of the Sith would carry out a personal vendetta against his own captain? That he had the compulsion to physically crush his victim’s throat? This was not as frightening as a scene in a later sequel, where he demonstrated the vengeful and wrathful power of a Sith lord. The ability to force choke a soldier, in this case Admiral Ozzel, who had failed to crush the rebels from space. Darth Vader simply opened a channel known as a holoscreen and force choked the admiral to death from a great distance whilst looking at him through the view screen. That was a display of awesome power previously unknown to the universe. Things can be better explained when we have true knowledge of them. That is the theory of perception of the Vedanta. Bikash encourages me to sharpen my intellect and mind, our great instruments that allow thinking, knowing, feeling and understanding. “Vedanta nurtures one to develop a strong intellect so that it can be a strict supervisor on the wanton mind.” Only then can you find the truth about what’s happening not only outside yourself but also within. Suddenly, it all made sense to me why George Lucas named the Dark Lord, Vader. Vader knew all along his loyalty to Emperor Palpatine was a lost cause. End of the Veda, Vedanta. The force choke was not a vendetta after all. It was just a senseless act of a defeated evil force. May the force be with you.