I grew up in a religiously, culturally and gastronomically Jewish home in Willingboro, NJ which is a suburb of Philadelphia. Our family went to synagogue weekly, practiced holiday rituals, lit the candles on Friday night, but kept kosher only when my paternal grandmother lived with us. I attended Hebrew school until I was 16. […]
A few moments ago, I finished watching one of my favorite films, Field of Dreams. It is a classic and serves as a reminder that listening to the inner voice or intuition can lead us to places we never would have expected. The tale is simple and endearing; one of regret and reconciliation and multi-generational love. And, of course, baseball.
Kevin Costner’s character Ray Kinsella is the son of a would-be baseball player whose values he traded in for that of Terrence Mann (the resonant-voiced James Earl Jones), an erstwhile rebellious writer from the 1960’s. They had the opportunity to meet only after Ray plows under his Iowa cornfield to allow for a baseball field. He was guided by the words, “If you build it, he will come.” The ‘he’ was not who Ray imagined he might have been. As the story unfolds, he follows the invocations to go to Boston to take Terrence to a baseball game because he was told to “Ease his pain.” where another message, “Go the distance.” was sprawled across the scoreboard. They continue to follow the yellow brick road as it were, to meet ‘Moonlight (a.k.a.) Doc’ Graham whose desire was to play the game but instead became a medical doctor. When he had the chance to play on Kinsella’s field, he relinquished it to save a life.
In the midst of this tale, is the real-life challenge of potential financial ruin since the cash crop of corn was no longer viable when transformed into a diamond. Toward the end of the film, Kinsella’s brother-in-law, portrayed by Timothy Busfield (Elliott from Thirtysomething; one of my favorite shows from the 1990’s), warns Kinsella that they will lose their house and land if he doesn’t sell the property to his business partners. He volleys back and forth between hearing Mann tell him that people will come to his field of dreams to watch games and bro-in-law cautioning him to be responsible. For the first time in countless viewings of the movie, it occurred to me that both were echoing the voice of fear and the voice of trust.
Throughout the years, I have been privy to that inner dialogue more times than I can count. I take leaps of faith in my personal and professional life. That insidious voice of fear screeches wildly that I will fail and fall, that my dreams can’t possibly come true because they haven’t yet manifested. It is then that I need to take a deep dive into what I know for sure. When I look back at what I have accomplished, the voice of trust is ultimately the voice of truth.