Junuh’s “Authentic Swing”

Steven Pressfield is the author of “The Legend of Bagger Vance.” It was originally published May 17, 1995. The movie was released November 3, 2000. Every time I get a chance to watch it, I do. It is filled with golden gems of life lessons. I watched it again this afternoon on satellite TV and it had the same emotional effect on me as the first (and every other time) I’ve viewed it. I’m not intending here to do a movie or book review. Rather I want to discuss how Pressfield’s words resonate within the heart and soul of most of us.

The true story is a story about golfers and the game of golf. Yet it applies to everyone concerning their God-given gifts and this thing we call life. Below are a number of quotes which are memorable and sources of motivation for us all:

Scene #1

Bagger Vance: (Will Smith) ” Yep, Inside each and every one of us is one true authentic swing…….Somethin’ we was born with…..Somethin that’s ours and ours alone…..Somethin’ that can’t be taught to ya or learned…..Somethin’ that got to be remembered……Over time the world can rob us of that swing…..It get buried deep inside us under all our wouldas and couldas and shouldas. Some folks even forget what their swing was like……There’s a perfect shot out there tryin’ to find each and every one of us….All we gotta do is get ourselves out of its way to let it choose us….Can’t see that flag as some kind of dragon you gotta slay….You got to look with soft eyes…..See that place where the tides and the seasons and the Earth turnin’ all comes together…..Where everything that is becomes one…..You got to seek that place with your soul.”

Scene #2 (In the trees)

Bagger Vance: What I’m talkin’ about is a game. A game that can’t be won only played.

Junuh: (Matt Damon) “You don’t understand.”

Bagger Vance: “I don’t need to understand. Ain’t a soul on this entire Earth ain’t got a burden to carry he don’t understand. You ain’t alone in that. But you been carryin’ this one long enough…..Time to go on……lay it down…..”

Junuh: “I don’t know how. It’s been too long.”

Bagger Vance: “Oh no sir it was just a moment ago….Time for you to come on out the shadows Junuh…..Time for you to choose……”

Junuh: “I can’t.”

Bagger Vance: “Yes you can but you ain’t alone. I’m right here with ya, I’ve been here all along…..Now play the game….your game…..The one that only you was meant to play. The one that was given to you when you came into this world…..You ready?…..Strike that ball Junuh, don’t hold nothin’ back, give it everything. Now’s the time. Let yourself remember. Remember your swing.”

A lot of critics hate this movie. Like I said, “I love it.





© Phyllis Rogers 2018




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