Blade Runner


In what is widely viewed as one of the greatest filmmaking achievements of all time, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner enters the Dharma Flicks ranks as an unlikely contender.  How, might you ask, does the stoic Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) impart onto us, intrepid Dharma students, any notion of the Buddha’s teachings?   In the 2019 imagined by the film, a race of beings called “replicants” are androids built to resemble humans in every possible way and to act as laborers on “off planet” colonies.  The film begins when four malevolent replicants escape from their colony and land on earth in order to coerce their maker into extending their four year life span.  Enter Deckard, a preeminent replicant hunter or, Blade Runner.  It becomes Deckard’s job to apprehend the four fugitive replicants. So wherein lies the Dharma?  As noted by Lama Marut in his current newsletter, there is a movement afoot to unearth the real Buddhism; a Buddhism that is free from both historical influence and modern reinterpretation.  What Lama Marut points out is that the “real” Buddhism is the Dharma passed from a Guru to a student.  Though Deckard’s search for the four replicants might be aided by certain objective facts, it is not without it’s complexity.  Like the student who must look within to find his or her Guru to discern the truth of that Guru’s teachings, Deckard too must resolve the lingering question: Is he too a replicant?  A mere simulacrum; a copy that has no original.