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    • Is belief in democracy required of a Jedi? (RELEVE... (Last post by CryojenX)
    • I believe in democracy about as much as I believe in authoritarian dictatorship and monarchy. They all exist in some degree or another. Of course that's kind of facetious of me, because I know what is meant by "belief" in this context, however the whole concept is related to how governments govern their domain. Their domain being defined by arbitrarily chosen lines on a map and given a name. If, simply for the sake of discussion, we regard these as separate entities (which they are not) there is still the unavoidable fact that change is constant, and that enantiodromia happens. "Nation-States" and "Governments" and even entire populations of people will by their very nature vacillate from any given extreme end of a spectrum to another. I personally am partial to the concept of a democratic process where people have a say in how their lives is governed, but this bias of mine means little to nothing to the universe, as events will shape themselves as they will. In which case the best we can do in such a situation as say a fascist dictatorship, is to simply act in a way which does not cause us to surrender our humanity.
    • Robes and Sabers (Last post by Jeffery Williams)
    • I agree it is symbolic but I feel like it is a "nod" to not only the films which inspired us on our path but also to history. Ones sword (back in the time when people carried swords) told you a lot about the person. Some were handed down, some of wealthier families were "flashy" and some paid tribute to ones religion. Same with a Saber build. Every custom self made saber is different as you put yourself into it. Some will have high budgets, and some will have the tools needed that others don't. I just started my first build and luckily I have access to a lathe so I'm using aluminum for my hilt: [attachment] [attachment] [attachment] [attachment] [attachment] *The blue is just marking future cuts
    • Jedi Parenting (Last post by tzb)
    • I explain what I believe to my kids, and some of the things other people believe. And then I ask them what they believe. For me, religion is an entirely personal thing... and my children are people, too. Does it colour my parenting style? Absolutely! I am a more calm, focused, sensitive, compassionate, loving and attentive person because of my path as a Jedi. I am more mindful of what I do, who I become, how I conduct myself. And I am more confident and at peace within myself. Jedi parenting, it's just parenting. We all give our best to it. My Jedi path has opened the door to the best of me.
    • Dont let your religion be a weapon to bring harm t... (Last post by Trisskar)
    • Quote: And I also currently big believer in Jedis when I said that realized that I made a mistake and that their expressions from kindness immediately turned into anger. I will summarize what they said but pretty much told me that if I don't stop believe what I believe that I will go to hell. I do wish people would contact the local LDS (Mormon) Branch when these sorts of agressions happen. That is not how Missionaries are supposed to respond and should be checked by their ranking members of church. Being Raised LDS (Mormon) I can personally say - This is not how its supposed to work. LDS (Mormons) can be persistant in their faiths and spreading of gods word - but never cruel and hellfire.
    • Aqua`s Art Gallery (Last post by Aqua)
    • The towns great scar.. A small countryside town, filled with old stories the broken wall, the unclean street move trough the alley behind the houses see the old rusty gate over there remember the garden, filled with weeds the makeover a new bank office remove the alley, remove the weeds huge concrete dump, massive tall building what have we done Aqua, 27-05-2016
    • Just for Laughs (Last post by OB1Shinobi)
    • "How do I disable the autocorrect function on my wife?" "Before I criticize a man, I like to walk a mile in his shoes. That way, when I do criticize him, I'm a mile away and I have his shoes" "I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn't work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness." ----- i sense trouble!
    • Defining Jedi and Sith (Last post by Kyrin Wyldstar)
    • I posted a version of this in my Apprentice Journal but since not everyone has access I will re-post a portion of it here. thx! I spent a great deal of time in contemplation of something that has been bothering me about Jediism for a while now. Myth of the past is intimately tied to the way people lived and believed. The inherent sacrifice built into hunter gather groups and the agricultural cycles and seasons of the year and the movement of the stars and man’s contemplation of what it means to be alive and how the universe works are all reflected in these myths. In other words, the myths grew out of these realities of everyday life. They are a way for us to express our experiences and emotions and our sense of connection to each other and this universe. They are, in effect, a reflection of the reality we know. And because of the challenges we encounter as a species the underlying leitmotifs of these myths has come to span all cultures and even time itself; the emergence of similar themes and archetypes appears again and again. But it seems that in the creation of Jediism from the mythology of Star Wars this is missing. The saga of Star Wars itself has the overarching themes and archetypes of any great mythos but in the creation of a real life religion centered on this mythos that connection to how we live and what we believe seems to be missing. It’s almost like the myth was created first and then the reality was built around it. Because of this, most Jedi seem to worship the myth itself instead of what it represents. Instead of focusing on defining what Jediism means from a practical standpoint many Jedi can’t describe any aspect of their spirituality without referring to one of the movies or its associated extended literature. This seems like a false basis for belief. Jediism has no real definitions and no real doctrine that can unite the “religion” as a whole We understand that these movies are, like the weapon of the light saber itself, wholly fictitious. But they are based on constructs and ideas that immediately seem familiar to us through what Campbell would describe as universal themes and archetypes. As such, we have a deep desire to emulate what we see in these films; to tap into that universal unconscious that strikes us with awe and wonder. Naturally, that leads us to wanting to emulate what we see in the movies. We are all drawn to Jediism because we want to touch that level of understanding of what it might be like to be an actual Jedi. I think this is a main goal of all of the Jediism groups out there. However, the question then becomes: How do we do that? My experience as a Jedi has shown me that many just feel what they see in the movies is to be taken as reality, no questions asked. They actually resist any sort of reality based definition of what a Jedi is. Instead they claim it’s just a personal experience that is not the same for any two. But without a definition of what a Jedi is how can we recognize a Jedi when we encounter one? If any definition is left up to the individual then what is to keep me from acting like a Sith (for example) and just calling myself a Jedi? After all my definition is just as valid as any others, right? Having said that, I do understand that there is some doctrine written that a Jedi swears to follow, but even that is different from group to group or one that many do now wholly embrace or completely agree with. So once again this becomes something that is up to individual preference and cannot be taken as a basis for definition. This leaves us with nothing but the application of movie and book plot points to resolve real life questions and that in turn leaves any chance at defining what it means to be a Jedi or solidifying Jediism into a truly functional religion at near zero. I have been stuck on this dilemma for quite some time, trying to resolve my Jediism with my sense of disconnection from what it means to be called a Jedi. In this pursuit I began to look at Archetypes again and I began to realize that I, and I feel many others, have been only skimming the surface of the Star Wars mythos. In order to truly understand what it is to be a Jedi or to form any definition of what a Jedi is we need to delve deeper into the mythos and begin to understand what universal concepts are speaking to us that we are trying to mimic. I was drawn back to Campbell for this. Campbell describes the concept of monomyth (one myth). This refers to the theory that sees all mythic narratives as variations of a single great story. The theory is based on the observation that a common pattern exists beneath the narrative elements of most great myths. Mythology itself has a fourfold function within human society. Awakening a sense of awe before the mystery of being, Explaining the shape of the universe, Validate and support the existing social order and guiding the individual through the stages of life. Star Wars definitely falls into this category so if we are to find what it is that is speaking to us we must dig deeper and find this fourfold pattern. Archetypes are a major component of this function. They are highly developed structures of our hidden psyche that emerge in our species as a result of our shared experiences across cultures and time. This is known as our collective unconscious. Jung described these in three categories. Archetypal events include: birth, death, separation from parents, initiation, marriage, the union of opposites; archetypal figures include: great mother, father, child, devil, god, wise old man, the monk, wise old woman, the trickster, the hero, the warrior; and archetypal motifs include: the apocalypse, the deluge, the creation. Archetypes are the embodiment of the fundamental characteristics of these things rather than their specific peculiarities. I think this is the thing that many have missed. We have been stuck on the surface exploring details and specifics of the myth when we needed to be delving into the most basic characteristics of the experience and finding that thing deep in our psyche that speaks to us and draws us inwards in the most fundamental way. We need to begin to unravel the very fabric of the myth of Star Wars itself and find what it is we are sensing as so profound in these movies. So what does it mean to call myself Jedi? It’s not about knowing everything I can about Luke Skywalker’s life or defining myself as using the light side or the dark side of the force (whatever that even means) or that I follow this doctrine or that doctrine or that I have incorporated aspects of Buddhism or Daoism into my spirituality or even that I practice meditation or regularly save kittens from fires. None of those things universally defines me as a Jedi as all those things vary from group to group and even from individual to individual. If you ask any two Jedi what the Force is you will get two very different answers. Instead we need to realize these things don’t matter because they are really just the specific peculiarities of individual belief and experience. Instead we need to go deeper, into the foundations of the myth. We need to understand what a Jedi is in purely mythological terms. This needs to be a universal definition from the collective unconscious that encompasses all who call themselves Jedi no matter what specifics they believe or follow. We need to look at the very archetype of Jedi. To use Jungian archetypes: A Jedi is a Warrior Monk. A Warrior Monk is a concept found in various cultures that describes an individual who combines aspects of being a monk, such as deep religious devotion and an ascetic lifestyle, with being a warrior, trained to engage in conflict (sometimes violent conflict). This person is highly trained for protection of themselves, their ideals and of those others who cannot protect themselves while exercising what they consider to be their rightful political and economic and spiritual rights in the search for truth. In these pursuits the Warrior Monk has a sacred devotion to this path. Replace the term Warrior Monk with Jedi and I think you have a universal definition of what it means to be a modern day Jedi. Each of us individually will differ in the semantics of their personal philosophies as Jedi and yet still remain under the umbrella of this archetype definition. I think even the term Sith can be included in this because even though they employ different methods to achieve their goals, they are still following this archetype. Other examples of this combination of archetypes include the Sōhei - a type of Japanese warrior, the Knights Templar, Knights Hospitallers and Teutonic Knights who were all warriors during the Crusades, and the Shaolin Monastery, a Chinese monastery renowned for monks who were experts in the martial arts. These are but a few examples of this Archetype manifesting in reality, myth and legend throughout time. I think the term “Jedi”, as we define it, is just another modern day paradigm of these past great Warrior Monks. Those who dedicate themselves to the path can even come to earn the title as Knights. Not all members of our species will identify with this archetype. But for us at TotJO (and those in other Jedi groups) it is the aspects of this archetype that WE are drawn to and it is these attributes that speak to us deep in our subconscious and it is the reason we pursue the path that we do. It is the reason we call ourselves Jedi.
    • The emphasis on blades/swords/lightsabers (Last post by Lleiffermawr)
    • Greetings, For me, it isn't about the blade itself. The reason that I use a blade upon an altar as a focus of meditation is the choice NOT to take up my weapon. As a Jedi Novice, I know that the temptation to act without thought is strong within me. I see the weak and helpless being trampled by the greedy and the 'strong'. Sometimes my conscience wishes to strike the oppressor in what I perceive to be Righteous Fury. And sometimes, I see the 'greater' picture. So to me, the blade is the symbol of choice. It is double-edged, showing that with each strike there is still the chance of cutting myself. With every action, there is a consequence. Am I willing to pay the coin for my action? Even my inaction is an action. A choice. I must be mindful of my thoughts and feelings and how it uses me. Will I let selfish pride take the place of conscious choice? My family use to have a battle ready sword on the wall above our fireplace. It was once used during the Revolutionary War and also the Civil War here in America. It had seen blood, sweat and tears. I am reminded of the price the soldiers that used it had to pay for picking it up. It has subsequently been donated to a museum, where I believe it belongs. Whenever we pick up a weapon, we WILL use violence to achieve an end. I think the choice NOT to pick it up to be more important than to use it.
    • What is our role as real Jedi in life? (Last post by Lleiffermawr)
    • Greetings, As a religious organization, whose aim is peace, it would be counter-intuitive to offer videos and instructions concerning self-defense and combat teachings through an online media. Most areas have at least one martial arts business which a dedicated Jedi could attend to receive such training. There are laws and regulations concerning such things, just as there are with psychological counseling, medication prescription and the like. While the willingness you have is appreciated, the Temple of the Jedi Order could receive retribution by the governmental authorities and lose their IRS status.
    • Why Master And Apprentice? (Last post by Lleiffermawr)
    • Greetings, This topic reminds me of an article presented by the Hare Krishna movement. While we in the West have a different relationship concerning such methods, I do believe that there is wisdom in such an arrangement. In the West, we have internships when we are entering a field of employment. Currently, I am finishing up my Bachelors of Science in Psychology and pursuing a career in Mental Health (with a focus on Chemical Dependency). In my Masters degree, I will be required to have a certain amount of hours of internship with a licensed professional to get hands on experience in the field. From this, I will build a rapport with a Counselor (aka Master/Mistress) and become their Apprentice or "understudy". This is not unlike the Guru-Chela relationship of Hindu teaching. The difference goes far deeper with any religio-philosophical society. Sometimes a Master-Apprentice partnership is created between two individuals with like-minded personalities, which allow greater learning to occur for both individuals. Sometimes, a Master-Apprentice relationship is established between opposites, allowing specific 'weakness' to be "ironed out". Say a Master shows great patience and understanding, empathy with others. The Apprentice on the other hand, is impatient and has a tendency for close-mindedness and can't seem to connect with others in deep meaningful ways. Should there be great devotion on both parts, the Master will learn how to interact with said Apprentice, becoming more mindful of their own faults and thus ability to deal with those around them that likewise show such personality traits. The Apprentice, desiring to learn, will temper his or her impatience in order to continue to learn, and thus become patient, kind and compassionate for others.
    • Essentials of Jedi Spirituality (Last post by CableSteele)
    • Thank you, Lleiffermawr, for bumping this. I do not believe I would have ever found this otherwise. What an amazing text! This should be stickied somewhere or maybe linked on the FAQ or Doctrine page. I'm going to print it and add it to my physical library.
    • Is I is, or is I aint a Jedi? (Last post by Lleiffermawr)
    • Greetings, It is rare to find a person that complements you in such a way. Most people have never even contemplated Jedi Realism as a considered path or lifestyle. Take for instance my own wife. She doesn't understand the seriousness of my Awakening to the reality and application of the terms "The Force", "Ashla", and "Bogan". The deeper connections between what is presented in the Legendarium (the Star Wars Universe) and its psychological and mythological connection with our own "Real World". That the beliefs, practices, and morality have actually existed on this planet for centuries. That the teachings of the Jedi can be found in ALL RELIGIONS (those that still exist, and those that have sadly died out). She just kind of brushes it all aside, and, as a Jedi hopeful, I recognize that we each must make our own choice, our own opinion. She accepts that this is part of WHO and WHAT I am, and so long as it makes me a better person, then she will acknowledge such. You have found a keeper my brother.

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