If you over esteem great men, people become powerless.
If you overvalue possessions, people begin to steal.
The Master leads by emptying people’s minds and filling their cores,
By weakening their ambition and toughening their resolve.
He helps people lose everything they know, everything they desire,
And creates confusion in those who think that they know.
Practice not-doing, and everything will fall into place.
Tao Te Ching Chapter 33
Owen has taken a lot of flak over the years for keeping young Skywalker in the dark about what really happened to his father. Maybe he was jealous and didn’t want to lose the free help, or perhaps he had great wisdom. Owen knew that Luke was meant for more than farming but he also knew that he had to find his own path. If Luke had discovered early on that his father was a Jedi then he would have left Tatooine as quickly as he could and done his best to emulate what he believed a Jedi was, this would have either led to his death or resulted in an early turn to the dark side. Owen knew that the boy would be powerless against his desire for adventure so he intentionally misled and kept him occupied with the mundane. By keeping him grounded he allowed Luke to develop his own persona and his own motivations. This forced distraction eventually led to Luke finding Obi-Wan and all Luke had dreamt of coming to fruition.
Much the same as Luke would have emulated a Jedi, so to do we emulate our impressions of life. We do not act as we wish to act but instead how we believe we should. We copy the behaviors and desires of those around us and lose ourselves in the process. As Dave Ramsey said, “We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” We live our lives on a stage within our minds, always trying to view ourselves as we believe others view us. This constant scrutiny results in our conforming to a perceived ideal of acceptance rather than allowing us to be our ideal self. We remove from public view all the things which we believe will cause us to stand out from the group and not be accepted, this is also usually accompanied by an inner dialogue where we convince ourselves it was never us to begin with.
It does not have to be like this.
Those strong individuals that set their own course and live their own lives are the ones that people look up to, the ones that everyone wants to be like. We may not want to do the same things but we want to believe we are capable of doing our own things. We have to discover who we are as an individual in order to be free within the group or else we bring nothing with us. Luke wouldn’t have destroyed the Death Star if he’d kept using his targeting computer like everyone else. They all thought something was wrong with him, but he was finally just getting in touch with his real self which allowed him to excel.
Once we stop acting in everyone else’s life and begin to live our own everything begins to come together. This isn’t some magical force but rather due to us focusing our attention on what we desire rather than on acceptance from a group. Through the continued practice of living authentically we find our place, we find our group, we find where we belong.