This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No)

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This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 02 Jul 2011 06:03 #40114

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While The Council would need to vote on this change I feel that input from all interested members is necessary for informed consideration.

For some time I've felt that calling this Special Interest Group Abrahamic is silly and not reflective of its contents at all. The content of the forum is 99.9%+ Christian.

History and the numbers don't support the current name. In the entire history of TOTJO I'm only aware of one member who nominally practiced the Muslim faith and only one or two who claimed the Jewish faith. I'm not attesting there are not more but stating this from my personal memory and experience.

Contrast this to the significant number of active members who are Christian Jedi. I believe the forum suffers from its current name and would be much more lively and used if we call it what it is - Christian Studies.

This is not to put off any potential member who may be Muslim or Jewish but to enhance a real need that we actually have now. We have a significant Christian population. We have a physical congregation in Minnesota with Zanthan Storm as it's Pastor and Bishop. They are Christian Jedi.

To have a group you have to have ... well ... a group.

In the future if there develops a real demand for an Islamic Studies forum or a Jewish Studies forum (and so on) we can make them.

In the beginning this forum was called The Christian Rite and it was changed on the theory of being more inclusive. That was a mistake. By trying to cast so large a net it's alienating the persons who'd actually use it.

Anyone be they guest or member is most welcome to express his or her ideas about this if interested.
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Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 02 Jul 2011 09:41 #40117

I think Christian studies or something along that line would be a more suitable name. I believe it would be a better description as well and would reflect the content better and would possibly be used more with a name change. As you stated, the Abrahamic religions vary greatly from one another, so it is hard to lump them all into one.

Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 02 Jul 2011 10:38 #40121

I see no issue, though a sticky about the change, why, and how we are not trying to put off the other abrahamic faiths might be a good idea if the change is done.

Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 02 Jul 2011 21:54 #40127

I have met one Muslim Jedi and one Jewish Jedi. To refer to this group as just Christian really does seem to snub the other two groups. If we changed this to "Christian", then why not change the Pagan group to "Wiccan". To do so with the latter would estrange a number of other groups which do not adhere to Wicca (for example, Hinduism).

If the subject was to change both groups from their names to something a bit more broad (Abrahamic becomes Monotheistic and Pagan becomes Polytheistic) then I might be more willing to accept the idea.
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Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 02 Jul 2011 23:12 #40129

As Br John stated though, if needed a group for Jewish, Muslim or other monotheistic religious people could be made. I don't think it would be snubbing them, as they are still welcome and another group can be made if the need or want arose. From how I see it, it is just hard to fit all God or monotheistic based religions under the Abrahamic group. Seeing as each of these often have very differing views on some stances. Also, newcomers might would be less hesitant to join if there was more of a specification of what religion. Not to stereotype, but people can be very protective of their faiths even down to how it is categorized. So in that aspect I see it as more of a help.

Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 03 Jul 2011 02:45 #40132

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As a non-Christian/Abrahamic Jedi I don't really have any issues other than what Jasper said.
Jasper_Ward wrote:
I see no issue, though a sticky about the change, why, and how we are not trying to put off the other abrahamic faiths might be a good idea if the change is done.

The only thing I would add is maybe to edit the FAQ with the question 'Why is there no Judaism/Islamic special interest group?' That way if anyone ever asks then we have the thread about it and they can see it in the FAQ as well.

The worst thing that can happen is that someone accuses us of being insensitive or otherwise when regarding the views of Islam or Judaism or indeed any other religion.

So I think it is just prudent to cover all of the bases.
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Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 03 Jul 2011 05:33 #40133

I know that I'm not an experienced member, but I'd like to point out that I myself don't see a need for that. It will probably only cause some minor future problems (like others said: "Why is there no Islamic/Judaism group?") and the people who use this forum know that it's mostly Christian either way. It will close the door for other Abrahamic religions - not forever, of course, but might be some disappointment for new members.

Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 03 Jul 2011 05:43 #40134

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Randi Oxford wrote:
I have met one Muslim Jedi and one Jewish Jedi. To refer to this group as just Christian really does seem to snub the other two groups. If we changed this to "Christian", then why not change the Pagan group to "Wiccan". To do so with the latter would estrange a number of other groups which do not adhere to Wicca (for example, Hinduism).

If the subject was to change both groups from their names to something a bit more broad (Abrahamic becomes Monotheistic and Pagan becomes Polytheistic) then I might be more willing to accept the idea.
This was my thinking as well. I would have agreed to switch to Christian Rite had there been nothing but Christians, but as it was mentioned that there were a small few of the Abrahamic Rite that are not Christian, I am much more wary about it. A minority is still a number. It doesn't seem right that they should be ignored just to make the majority more comfortable (and really, how much of a change in comfort is it anyway? Christianity is an Abrahamic religion).

Plus, there's the issue of how to deal with those who aren't Christian and are looking for a place where they fit (i.e. the hypothetically nonexistent Abrahamic Rite). You can talk about placing disclaimers or answers in the FAQ or waiting for complaints, but that still takes effort on their part, when all they're wanting is to find a place where they can be comfortable, and feel a bit nervous when they can't find it.

Maybe I'm overthinking things in assuming that would be their reactions, I don't know. It just seems like a needless change. And again, .1% may be small, but it's still something worth considering.
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Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 03 Jul 2011 06:37 #40136

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I'm looking at this from the perspective of mislabeling or false advertising. What's actually in that forum? I'm not finding any Jewish or Muslim discussions but plenty of Christian discussions including prayers and ceremonies for a multitude of occasions.

I frequently eat and get take out from a local Black Eye Pea restaurant. The food is very good and so it the service. Several months ago my mother and I went there and the special was Chicken and Dumplings. We ordered it. What a letdown. It was Chicken Soup with dumplings thrown in. Even Campbell's Soup gets this right. They have a Chicken Soup with Dumplings and then they have Chicken and Dumplings which (I hope) you all know is a rich creamy sauce with plenty of chicken and dumplings made from biscuit batter.

So while I don't know how a Muslim or Jewish person would feel if they go in this forum I do understand the disappointment of expecting something and not getting it.

Nobody's saying we cannot have and add forums labeled Muslim Studies and Jewish Studies.

What I'm saying is that we properly label that forum to reflect what's actually in it.
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Re: This Should Be Christian Not Abrahamic (Yes / No) 03 Jul 2011 21:31 #40149

Then perhaps it would be a good idea for people who are in that forum to help bring about more teachings from the other two systems. Just to help even things out. After all, Christianity sprung forth from Judaism, and Islam sprung from Christianity. It helps bring about a more well rounded view of how the system has evolved in the three systems.

You know, so long as they remain respectful when researching and posting.
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In turn, it watches over them, gives them life and strength and helps them to grow. It soothes them and protects them. It gives us a model for teaching or creating anything. The Force does its work without the expectation of reward. It does work and then lets it go. This is like a leader who never gives orders: the leader is there to aid the led, but works in the moment at hand and doesn't get bogged down in specifics. 52 The Force is the only source. Everything came from it, and all things necessarily return to it. There's no path which is not contained with it, and no road which did not start at the start of the Force. We're used to seeing distinct objects but that doesn't mean these weren't built "from" something else. A good way to remain content is to cultivate an awareness that perception and subdivision is illusory: that everything has a "mother" which we all share, the Force. It's like the phrase "see with your heart". 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But further than this we can put our communities and countries into touch with the Force. We can inspire harmony on a global scale and encourage those who will to hear our message of unity, allowing them to decide for themselves if they can see the connectedness of all things. But this huge change begins with one person's decision to know their true nature, and thereby unlock the key to all reality. Just as the leaf must understand its stalk before it can realise it is part of a mighty tree, so must we understand our own connection before we can begin to understand the wider Force. 55 Jedi minds are like the minds of children. We are like babies, open and in harmony with life. Babies are natural Jedi, in tune with how things really are. Even their skulls are soft, which lets them take life's knocks without too much damage. Because they flow with the changes of things, it's hard for them to be hurt by them. Their muscles are weak, but they have a tight grip - that's all they need at that stage of their lives. They're just as ready as they need to be for whatever comes next. Babies can also shout all day without getting hoarse, so they can even outperform us when relevant. The harmony of a baby is complete. The constancy of this harmony endures because it's all the baby knows - all the baby can know. This is a source of illumination for us all. Like a baby, Jedi expect nothing, so are never disappointed. Things come, things go, and Jedi let them. In this way our spirit remains like a baby, and never has to grow old. By remaining in touch with the Force, we never die. 56 Wisdom speaks for itself. Those who talk usually don't know what they're talking about, and those who do know are either silent or already acting. Like them, if one hopes to follow a path of wisdom it's better to be quiet and observe things rather than constantly talking. We let go of the worries which close us off from the truth and stay on the sidelines, which give us the best view of what's going on. We must stay in the world if we want to understand it, rather than wandering off down some obscure path of study. As such, we find the middle ground in all things. We simplify. We untie the knots and blunt the knives, become one with the light, one with the dust. We remember what we are. Once we reach an understanding of things, we aren't concerned with praise or blame. We move beyond winning and losing, honour or disgrace. All we care about are things as they are, and that's the correct way to live life. 57 The Force presents a model of leadership. It's possible to run a country by engaging in hostility, winning wars and playing politics; but one gains far more without surplus effort, struggle or striving. The more restrictive a nation, the poorer and more unhappy its citizens become. When all the focus is on hoarding weapons, people become habituated to violence and that causes both internal and external problems. Conniving leaders can't truly help people; their misdirection and half-truths only spin further and further out of control. Laws pile up in order to keep things going as they would like, but in the end all this creates is a whole nation of outlaws. As such Jedi quietly allow people to transform themselves, and learn to do the right thing of their own natural volition. Jedi stay out of the way of what is right. Allowing the world to seem good rather than hostile in nature, Jedi promote a perspective where what's good is the norm. 58 Good leaders encourage simplicity. If a government is harsh and bureaucratic, people will have to add complexity to their lives in order to undermine and outwit it. The fact is we must accept some bad things in life, and no amount of legislation will prevent us from being unhappy sometimes. Better to keep things simple, and to invest more in increasing happiness than in reducing sadness. Sadness will find a way through whatever we manage to do, and by understanding this we become free. At the same time we'd be unwise to think we could survive without any guiding hands. Chaos is never too far away from the order we depend upon: what we must do is be a quiet word, a gentle hand guiding things along in the simplest and least authoritarian way possible. One of the best ways of doing this is in serving as an example to others. That way we achieve what needs to be achieved without exerting undue energy, and, crucially, without becoming mired in wholly counter-productive complexity. 59 Jedi lead through moderation. We are like farmers tending a field, living simply and sparingly, responding quickly to the needs of that which we cultivate and calmly overcoming what must be overcome in order to produce a successful harvest. This idea can be used from the smallest to the largest things in life and it corresponds to all our enterprises. In this way we can become the leaders of a country, nourishing and supporting everyone. We are the roots which bind the people together because we remain conscious of the unity of all people, all things, and this allows our leadership to be long, productive and far-reaching. By having firm, deep roots, Jedi remain clear to the truth of things; we see the Force as it is, rather than worrying about ideas and concepts which are illusion. We make use of whatever's available and then, once our work is done, let go. 60 Treating things appropriately prevents harm. This is even true of leadership: the best way to lead a large country is to treat it as though one is cooking a small fish. If we poke it around in the pan too much it will fall apart and then we won't have much of anything. But if we give it the time it needs and carefully attend it without interfering too much, it doesn't take things long to start to be productive. The Force creates great harmony in the world, and when the mood of a nation is in tune with it, even evil things seem less evil because they can no longer harm people. Jedi are part of the country, and by doing no harm and feeling no harm done to us, we deomnstrate the idea of "harm" is unnecessary. All is one in the Force. Even harm is just change. Understanding this, that they can't come to harm in any real sense, people will begin to do what's right without coercion. 61 Power tends to grow. If someone suddenly gains power, they gain the opportunity to supplement that power as a result of their success. But they must be careful to retain their humility, to trust in the Force and therefore not become defensive. Accepting and admitting mistakes, as well as facing criticism with good humour is essential not just for people but for organisations as well. A great country is formed on the principle of serving and protecting its people. This is especially evident in small countries where there are only a few people and the nation is set up to serve their interests directly. This is the way of the Force: when the organisation serves its members, everything is as it should be. If a powerful force can yield to a small single element, it is expressing a fundamental appreciation of the unity of part and whole. Jedi understand an enemy is like a shadow we ourselves cast. 62 The Force is refuge for everyone. Good or bad, we can find solace and comfort in the all-encompassing, all-pervading Force. We can't gain more or less "Forcehood" through money or theft, and as such the Force is a great leveller. Jedi are no more "of" the Force than ordinary people, criminals or murderers. If one wishes to benefit someone, they should not pledge weapons or wealth, nor even expertise in some skill; instead they should offer to teach them of the ways of the Force. This is the greatest gift one can give, the gift of knowing one's own true nature and the wisdom that flows forth from this understanding. If we have an understanding of the Force, we will never make a mistake which we can't recover from, because we understand that in the Force, all is one. 63 Jedi do without doing. This is the familiar idea of wu-wei, of acting without striving and achieving things with the minimum possible effort by waiting for the opportune moment, doing just what needs to be done and acting without excessive drama or excitement. If one approaches a problem when it first appears, it is only a small problem and is easily solved, rather than left to become a worrisome chore. Jedi know to break down a huge undertaking into smaller, manageable steps. Because we don't jump straight at the distant goal, we end up getting there. We accept that difficulties will and must beset our path at times, and know these to be opportunities to learn, to grow and to improve our understanding. We know that promises and plans tend to fall by the wayside whatever our intentions and prefer to keep things simple so we are open and ready for whatever comes with our whole hearts. When difficulties emerge we give ourselves to them; because we don't cling to comfort in this way, we find our problems are not even things to overcome, just necessary steps on the path. Jedi know that everything has inherent difficulties, so nothing is truly difficult. 64 Jedi use the opportune moment. We know that something which is new is easy to change, and something which is old is easy to maintain. What's brittle can be broken and what's small can be scattered. We appreciate the inherent qualities of everything as we find it and this allows us to use everything to its strength, which is the way of the Force. A giant tree grows from a tiny seed, and the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Instead of rushing headlong towards our goals, Jedi pace ourselves and reach things in their natural time, without exertion or excess. We don't grasp because that only leads to losing things. We don't rush things and only pick the fruit of our labour when it is ripe - one can still spoil something by taking one's time but then rushing the point of completion. We let things follow their course, trust in the Force to provide all we need to live, to grow and to be content. We have nothing and hence have nothing to lose. All we want is not to want: all we learn is there's nothing to know. Because we care only about the Force, we care about all things. 65 Jedi keep things simple. There's a lot of stress on people to be clever and cunning, but this isn't a positive thing in a leader. Too much cleverness can alienate people, but everyone can understand something if it is simple enough. If things flow simply, everyone can understand them. Because we avoid complexity, Jedi avoid messing things up through overcomplicating them; those who know too much already can't be taught new things, or if they can the process of unlearning can take great effort. Jedi are thus open-minded, focussed on the task at hand in the present moment. We seek to simplify knowledge into wisdom. This is one of the fundamental elements of the Force, that in keeping things simple we remain nearest the true nature of things as they really are. What is more simple than one thing? And this unity and oneness penetrates every level of existence, so when we bring our actions into line with it we tap into the same creative, transformative power. By living simple, ordinary lives, we serve as examples that even with a deep understanding of the whole universe, what is best is simple, familiar, normal. 66 The Force is like an ocean. All it does is remain there, and rivers flow into it. All it must do to receive what they bring is not move, which is why everything thrown into a river inexorably makes its way into the sea. In the same way, those who need to be listened to must talk like the people they speak to. They must not set themselves up in ivory towers and never move amongst the people; they must show they are ordinary, available, relatable. Jedi find out where the people around us want to go, and get there first to show we understand. We become examples and teach actively, by doing rather than just by talking or theorising. We don't fight the current but accept it, work with it, nudge it if necessary. This can often mean a compromise, which is a harmonious way of working. People want to feel safe and listened to without being smothered. A leader who understands and respects this will gain their trust. Jedi don't compete with anyone, and thus never lose competitions. 67 The Force and the Jedi path can seem ridiculous. Many laugh at it and some find it completely impractical, but those who have considered it sincerely and honestly can feel its resonance inside themselves. Compared to our habitual perception of things, it is nonsensical, yet it makes perfect sense and resonates deeply with us. That shows that our ordinary ideas of reality are in fact the nonsensical ones. By putting these teachings into practice, anyone can experience their veracity. There are three core lessons: Simplicity, Patience and Compassion. These are great allies. By remaining simple in action and thought, we return to the source of everything, the Force. By being patient, we show we accept the way things are and must be. And through compassion (including compassion towards ourselves), we reconcile all the diverse and distinct objects in the world into a single unity. 68 Jedi avoid conflict. Vengeance, violence and aggression are not helpful tools. Jedi understand that sometimes we find ourselves in situations where we are tested against other people. We thrive in situations where our best is matched by the best of others; competition involves weakening or subduing others, but Jedi seek to let the authentic, honest and sincere sentiment of every action meet equally sincere actions from other people, even if this is seemingly in conflict. There is no conflict - there are merely aspects of the Force coming together in a display of "Forcefulness". The true warrior is not aggressive but skilful, doing just what needs to be done without additional showmanship or excessive brutality. Likewise the true victor does not seek vengeance but accepts the outcome of things as they are. A leader is not violent and shows respect to those they serve. This expresses the value of modesty as the best way to interact with people. As has been discussed already, the Force is humble and if we desire to act in accordance with the Force, we are best to retain our own humility. Only in operating this way can we bring our actions in line with the Force. We can't hope to lead others if we think of them as less than us, or ours to push around: don't forget we are one and the same in the Force. 69 Jedi exercise restraint. When unsure, it is better to retreat than to advance. Wise military commanders know this: that it is best to repel an enemy without directly opposing them, and that a retreat can achieve this better than a blind advance. It's better to stay put and prepare ourselves for whatever comes than seek out into an unknown which could be full of danger. Jedi understand that underestimating an opponent is unwise and can lead to negative outcomes; one of these is thinking one's opponent an evil, stupid or pathetic person. In doing so we forget our unity with even apparent opponents and enter the mindset of competition. Such an act of underestimation means giving up on simplicity, patience and compassion. Better to stick to these three core principles and trusting that with time, care and attention things will become clearer and the opportune moment will present itself. The truth is that when sides are taken, the "victor" is the one who knows how to yield. If we retain our compassion and understanding that our enemy is just like us, is our enemy only because of us (like the aforementioned shadow of Verse 61), then we overcome even the conflict itself. The "winner" is the one who doesn't want to fight. 70 Jedi are realistic. We know even the clearest wisdom can't be followed completely, at all times. Humans can understand these ideas and move closer into line with this conception of things, but the reality is we all have moments where we stray from this path. It's part of our nature and the nature of the Force that things happen this way, and therefore not something to feel bad about - rather one should retain a balanced perspective that doing a little is better than making no attempt at all. Because only a few will come close to the meaning of the Force in their lives, the book (which isn't subject to the same foibles) remains a valuable guide to the path of wisdom which is far purer than a human could ever truly be. Jedi thus often wear plain clothes and make no announcement of our wisdom. We will do what's right whenever we can and let that speak for itself. 71 Jedi are self-aware. Knowing the limits of our wisdom is true wisdom. If we don't maintain this awareness and start making assertions we can't back up, one comes into difficulties. Happily it's simple to clear oneself of this misapprehension: we have to reject anything we're not sure of. We have to find fault with our own faults; we have to learn to know ourselves. Eventually, we move to emptiness, to open perception without judgement or preconception to muddy the water. This is how we all start on the path to true wisdom, because every one of us has preconceptions before we learn the truth of the Force. 72 Authority is restrictive. As such, Jedi do not seek to lead through authority. We seek to lead people to their own understanding, and to cultivate their own wisdom rather than receiving ours. How can one person tell another their true nature? This is something we can only learn about ourselves. Thus ideas such as religious dogma and hierarchical organisations draw people away from a true experience of their own nature. As such, Jedi take a step back and clear away the confusion we may cause. We operate without fences, borders or wearing others down to our way of seeing things. We are content to quietly know and love ourselves as an expression of the Force without trying to insist others see it as well. We teach without dictating reams of words, and reveal to people that our role is not so much to learn as to unlearn; not so much to become complete as to dismantle what they've already built. 73 Jedi act as required. It is brave to be bold, and brave to be careful too. The bold die, the careful survive. Who can say which is preferable in the final analysis? We can't know which is better, but we do know how the Force works. Because it doesn't push, it always has space to act. Because it can't be called upon or summoned, it appears when the time is right. It reacts without acknowledging the initial action. This suggests we must do what is necessary, rather than deciding "today I will be bold!" or "today I will take great care". The Force works because it is empty; there is space available for whatever comes. Like a net, it can seem full of holes: but also like a net, it always captures everything it needs. 74 All that happens is of the Force. Accepting death is crucial to understanding our role as part of the wider Force. People die, and if we accept this as a natural change we can no longer be threatened. Even the worst that received wisdom can threaten us with is simply part of the natural order. Understanding we will inevitably die and this is right and natural according to the way of the Force is thus a pathway to complete liberation. However we must take care not to use our own diminished fear of death as a tool to control those who still fear it; taking up the executioner's axe is likely to result in nothing more productive than accidentally chopping off our own heads. 75 Authority interrupts the natural order. Because people are hungry, authority taxes more. This makes more people hungry. Because people rebel, authority tightens its grip. This makes people rebel more. Because people feel their lives are meaningless, they're not afraid to kill or to die. This is why authority is a dangerous tool, and why it's best to leave people to govern themselves where possible. Those who learn to enjoy life, and to value the path of least effort as the most natural one display more wisdom than those who seek to cut themselves off from the way things are; these people are the authority in their own lives, and are thus creating more harm than good. Internal barriers are self-defeating: by building them at all, we are inviting ourselves to overthrow them. 76 Jedi are soft and yielding. That is the path of life: we are born soft and supple as a baby and end stiff and hard as a corpse. Plants live through their pliancy and flexibility, and are hard stalks and brittle branches in death. To be flexible is to be a disciple of the Force. What is brittle will break; what is supple will endure. Soldiers trained to fight to the death will be cut down in their thousands, and the tallest trees are the first to be cut down. This is one reason the Force endures: it knows how to yield. This echoes the phrase "the bigger they are, the harder they fall". Jedi do not seek to be big, only to be simple, empty and flexible. 77 The potential of the Force is like a bow. To use it, we draw from the middle. The top bends down, the bottom curves up, and all the energy is focused at the centre. The bow requires this balance of things in order to work, and when all is balanced in this way, the potential energy is far greater than then these elements are further out from the centre. Similarly to a bow, when these elements align the energy they generate can travel great distances towards a target. Jedi understand that to use energy means taking it from elsewhere. Most people take it from where there's just enough and so create deficiency with their actions. Jedi only seek to balance the energy of the world - we give energy where it is needed and take it from where there is a surplus. If energy flows freely and consistently through all things, Jedi do nothing at all. This is the same idea as getting the job done simply and not being concerned with credit. 78 The nature of the Force is like water. Like water, it is soft and yielding yet can wear away the hardest stone; it is persistent and consistent in its approach to things. We can adopt this approach and overcome things which are stronger than ourselves. We can be flexible and circumvent that which is hard. This is not new insight, but most people don't or can't apply it to their lives. For example, everyone knows that in helping people with their mundane, day-to-day problems we gain their trust; but Jedi understand it is by dealing with the problems of the world, such as imbalances of energy within the wider Force, that we become truly useful. By refusing to join the herd and remaining focused on how things truly are, we become the solid foundations which others can hold on to. 79 Failure is an opportunity. It is inevitable that we fail sometimes and Jedi know that we must see failures and setbacks as vital learning opportunities. Why else would the Force bring us failure, if not to give us some lesson about our own deficiencies or excesses? It is therefore a mistake to blame someone else in the event of a failure. If something goes wrong and it affects us, what could we have done differently? What will we do differently next time? Thinking this way means we don't ask others to take the blame for mistakes we ourselves could have mitigated. We don't hold hurtful grudges or focus on what is "owed" to us; instead we focus on what we owe. Jedi are therefore responsible in the face of failure: rather than engaging in an endless, useless game of passing the buck, we reflect and learn valuable lessons, and thus secure success in our future endeavours. 80 Small communities can achieve great contentment. We can easily imagine a simple community which doesn't need new approaches or the latest machines to survive, doesn't motivate members of its community to leave to discover new things, and doesn't require a lot of effort and work to maintain. Such a community can dress plainly, eat simple foods, continue their traditions and remain comfortable. Even having other communities nearby would not motivate them to leave; because they had everything they needed, no superficial desires arise in their minds and they are content to live and die in the same peaceful spot. Temptation becomes an alien concept when everyone has just enough; just enough is all we need. 81 Truth is not always beautiful. Be wary of beautiful words because they often camouflage an unpleasant reality. Those who are wise don't need to dress it up or argue about it. Qualifications don't make someone wise. We should look beyond mere appearances in all aspects of life. Jedi have few possessions and as such have less to worry about. The more we can give to others, the happier we are. The more we give to others, the wealthier we become. The less we have, the more what we do have means to us. "For it is in giving that we receive..." Jedi understand that we can nurture harmony without forcing it, and encourage people without hurting them. This is the way of the Force.

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