Why Vanya’s Power In ‘The Umbrella Academy’ Doesn’t Sound Right

In season one of ‘The Umbrella Academy’, the one deemed most ‘extra ordinary’ among the Hargreaves’ foster siblings turn out to be the most extraordinary. The brothers and sisters lived as a school of X-men of sorts, with each not being ordinary, in terms of having some special power, with the ‘late bloomer’ being Vanya. Her power turned out to be suppressed as it was deemed too dangerous, even to tame.

She was able to focus upon a physical sound to magnify its force with her mind. But with weak control of her emotions leading to instability, a sibling’s literal power of persuasion was used to suggest to her, that she has no powers at all. This led to repressed emotions, of bitterness, feeling left out, that eventually explodes. A power that could have been nurtured to save the day even threatens to bring about doomsday.

Incidentally, the Buddha has the power of persuasion too – to urge many to learn and practise the Dharma. Being able to accurately predict when Buddhahood will be attained, this too can be seed as a kind of encouraging persuasion, to get many to truly fulfil the prophecy as predicted, thus closing the loop.

Like the siblings, we too have a most powerful hidden potential, that has been neglected for many lifetimes – our Buddha-nature. Realising it does unleash supernormal powers, but all in natural good time… as presence of the three poisons of greed, hatred and delusion can be amplified through careless wielding of powers, to wreck great havoc and cause grief. That said, the academy’s collective power is but a small fraction of the Buddha’s all-in-one power!

Like Vanya, we are perhaps sometimes resentful, of being ‘too ordinary’, while each of us already has the hidden gem of Buddha-nature within, waiting to be discovered and actualised. As long as we can become Buddhas, and that we are working towards Buddhahood, there is no cause for spiritual inferiority complex at all. Every moment is a turning point, with choice to be more heroic or villainous, to do better or worse.

Vanya’s power is expressed through focus on a single sound, through which she vents her destructive emotions, thus amplifying that that sound’s waves. In terms of the Dharma, her power does not make sense. This is so as with true focus on a sound, think Guan(shi)yin Bodhisattva’s method of practice, there should be hearing it intently only, while not paying attention to any emotion, what more building it up. As such, there should be more patience and calmness, not rage, and thus less destructive power!

Please Be Mindful Of Your Speech, Namo Amituofo!

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