“Twisting yourselves into pretzels, you are.”

Yoda on Climate Change!

Ben Fathi
2 min readJul 15, 2023

“A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. This one a long time have I watched. All his life has he looked away… to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was.” — Yoda.

“No! Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try.” — Yoda.

I was on a hike in a beautiful Northwest forest yesterday, thinking to myself about the vicissitudes of life. I’d just had an interesting conversation with a friend regarding climate change so the topic was top of my mind.

Suddenly I heard a sentence in my head that, although not voiced in his inimitable voice, could not have originated anywhere but from the mouth of Yoda himself. It carried his characteristic style and succinctly summarized a complex issue into a few short words.

“Twisting yourselves into pretzels, you are,” the voice said. A more accurate diagnosis of the human condition cannot be imagined.

For the next few minutes, more and more sentences came to mind, almost every single one in Yoda’s distinctive backwards style. I wasn’t thinking them into existence so much as they were using me as a conduit in order to be born. I’ve cleaned it up a bit below but this basically covers the jist of what I heard/thought.

Twisting yourselves into pretzels, you are. Happy inside, you’re not. Rapacious and greedy, you are. Lessons of the ancients, you ignore. Money and position, you seek. Lost in thoughts, you are.

Constantly worried about a yet to come future or ashamed of a foggy past, you are. Never realizing that neither are anything but a figment of your imagination. That they exist nowhere but in the minds of men.

Wary and tired, you are. Never in the present moment, you are. Ignorant of the force all around us, you seem. Lost in the labyrinths of your own mind, you are. Unwilling or unable to see the truth that’s surrounding you, you seem. Hell bent on destroying yourself and the rest of the planet, you seem. Guardian of the planet, you’re supposed to be. Raper of nature, you’ve become.

Repent, young padawan. Repent.

I don’t think it was directed at me specifically. I think it was intended for all of us.

Yoda has spoken. The question is whether we’ll listen. It’s not too late to undo the damage we’ve done to the planet but that won’t happen unless and until we all change our ways.

“You must unlearn what you have learned,” the “actual” Yoda has been heard to say. What we have all learned is to be greedy and selfish. If we can unlearn that, everything else follows seamlessly.

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Ben Fathi

Former {CTO at VMware, VP at Microsoft, SVP at Cisco, Head of Eng & Cloud Ops at Cloudflare}. Recovering distance runner, avid cyclist, newly minted grandpa.