We all have only a short time to live.
Either we are going to be in control of our lives, or something else will be doing the controlling.
When the movie, Joe vs the Volcano came out in 1990 it didn't
get good revues, in fact many of the critics believed it
was Steven Spielberg's attempt at comedy and a flop at that.
But inside what seems like a comedy/romance there are some
real gems of inner life wisdom.
Joe is an ordinary guy (played by Tom Hanks) who is stuck in
a despicable job with despicable people. His life is pitiful,
plus Joe's a hypochondriac on top of it all.
Joe goes to doctor after doctor and finally Dr. Ellison (Robert
Stack) tells Joe he has a terminal brain cloud with only a
short time to live. So Joe quits his job, tells his boss off
and takes the secretary out for dinner.
An eccentric billionaire Samuel Harvey Graynamore played by
Lloyd Bridges, approaches Joe and promises to give Joe the
lifestyle he always wanted and it all ends with Joe jumping
into the volcano to appease the fire god.
See, there is a mineral on an island called Waponi Woo that
Graynamore needs and a volcano (the Big Woo), which needs a
human sacrifice every 100 years. So Joe agrees to make the
Joe gets the lifestyle of a king then is transported to Waponi
by the billionaire's daughter Patricia, played by Meg Ryan.
Joe was a hero in the fire department before going to work in
his present job. He had courage. Part of Joe vs the Volcano is
But Joe lost his courage and sold his soul to Mr. Waturi
(his old boss) for a lousy 300 bucks a week. Joe was afraid.
Afraid of losing his despicable job, afraid to say what was
on his mind for fear of upsetting his boss, afraid to live
his life, afraid to make a change.
And Joe became soul sick, he knew he was losing his soul.
Joe's life was controlled by one thing: Fear.
When Dr. Ellison told Joe he had terminal brain cloud, Joe
was already dead. He didn't have a life, he was in a situation
that he put up with every day for a paycheck and a totally
false sense of security.
The minute Joe said he would jump into the volcano, it was
then that Joe once again regained and refound his courage.
It was at that point that Joe began waking up out of his psychic
slumber and started to become alive.
Joe had allowed himself to be controlled by his own thoughts
of illness and allowed himself to be a victim, which lead him
to the despicable lifestyle he found himself in.
The minute he said he would jump into the volcano, his life
and lifestyle immediately changed, much for the better.
Joe was controlled by his fear, by his situation, by his boss,
by the pursuit of a couple of dollars a week.
Do You and I Have a Brain Cloud?
You and I are either going to be controlled or we are going
to be the one doing the controlling in our lives.
We can be controlled by many things such as:
health or physical
drive for success
With each situation, we can be controlled by the situation
or we can choose to not be. This is a conscious choice that we
alone make, and we make it hundreds of times every day.
Is a situation or other person dictating to you how you are
going to think, feel or act?
Every choice, every situation is met only in the present moment.
It is in that moment that you and you alone have the power to
make the choice to be at peace with this or to let this
situation/person allow you to be angered or upset or
controlled by it.
Being in control of your own life begins with making the
conscious decision to be the master of your own destiny.
Joe re-gained control of his life. It took a wake up call
that he was going to die for Joe to wake up and live.
Dr. Ellison said to him, "You only have a short time to live,
I suggest you live it well."
Joe, like many of us, had terminal brain cloud. His brain was
clouded by fear. That fear affected everything Joe did in his
life. That brain cloud controlled Joe's life and was slowly
We all only have a short time left to live. We can live the
rest of our lives being controlled by something else, or we can
live life being the one doing the controlling.
It takes courage. Just like Joe..... you and I already have that
courage within us. We were born with it.
It is in our power to discover that who we really are has nothing
to fear, but that we make yourself fearful each time we look
outside of ourselves for some power to make us feel fearless.