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    • Jedi Movies? (Last post by Snowy Aftermath)
    • Steamboat28 said: Quote: * The Fountain I love that movie with my whole heart. Everything about it is excruciating.
    • Where does Joseph Campbell talk about Phoenix tear... (Last post by Trisskar)
    • I found this. But I don't like the website...or laptop dosn't. So i copy and pasted with reference link. Is this what you meant? Spoiler: In a conversation between Bill Moyers and Joseph Campbell, who was the 20th century's greatest interpreter of myths, Campbell talked about the hero's journey: "A legendary hero is usually the founder of something—the founder of a new age, the founder of a new religion, the founder of a new city, the founder of a new way of life." In response, Moyers said to Campbell, "But doesn't this leave all the rest of us ordinary mortals back on shore?" "I don't think there is any such thing as an ordinary mortal," Campbell answered. "I always feel uncomfortable when people speak about ordinary mortals because I've never met an ordinary man, woman or child. ... You might say that the founder of a life—your life or mine, if we live our own lives, instead of imitating everybody else's life—comes from a quest as well." I have my own name for the quest. I call it the Phoenix Process—in honor of the mythic bird with golden plumage whose story has been told throughout the ages. The Egyptians called the bird the Phoenix and believed that every 500 years the Phoenix bird renewed his quest for his true self. Knowing that a new way could only be found with the death of his worn-out habits, defenses and beliefs, the Phoenix built a pyre of cinnamon and myrrh, sat in the flames and burned to death. Then he rose from the ashes as a new being—a strange amalgam of who he had been before and who he had become. A new bird, yet ever more himself; changed, and at the same time, the eternal Phoenix. You and I are the Phoenix. Our lives ask us to die and to be reborn every time we confront change—change within our self and change in our world. When we descend all the way down to the bottom of a loss, and dwell patiently, with an open heart, in the darkness and pain, we can bring back up with us the sweetness of life and the exhilaration of inner growth. When there is nothing left to lose, we find the true self—the self that is whole, the self that is enough, the self that no longer looks to others for definition, or completion, or anything but companionship on the journey. The Phoenix Process is a journey that is different for everyone, and therefore, ultimately, it is a trek into uncharted territory. It is unhelpful to compare one person's journey to another's—all are different, and one is not more profound or important than another. Very painful situations—the loss of a loved one, a serious illness, a national tragedy—have the power to transform one's life, but so do less traumatic events. It's all in the way we approach the changing nature of life; it's all in the courage to say yes to whatever comes our way; it's in the way we listen for the messages in the flames and dig for the treasure in the ashes. Rules of the Phoenix Process 1. Change is the nature of life, and nothing changes without loss, which is a form of death. Death therefore is a prerequisite to change and rebirth. Loss and change, death and rebirth: These are natural, necessary cycles. No one can escape loss and death. Pretending otherwise is exhausting and a huge waste of time. To resist change, loss or death is to say no to life. 2. It's not easy to participate consciously with change, loss or death. More often than not, we would like to stay asleep to the whole subject. It hurts to lose and to change; it causes us grief. But grief is not a sign of anything being wrong, nor is it a sign of weakness. In fact, grief in the face of loss lubricates the wheels of change. Denial and bitterness are like sticks stuck in the spokes of the wheel; they render us motionless. When we turn toward what is changing—when we keep our hearts open and allow ourselves to feel a loss all the way through—we move with more grace into a new, energetic and constructive phase of life. 3. We can transform loss into growth, change into insight and suffering into joy if we turn and face that which frightens us most about ourselves and our changing circumstances. This takes courage. We may find aspects of our personality that need altering. We may find parts of our lives that can no longer remain the same. We may have to upset old family patterns, adjust ways of thinking, let go of habits. Part of the Phoenix Process is asking for help, learning new ways of doing things, seeking inspiration. We need help to learn how to take the suffering deep inside and to make the process an interior one. As long as we blame others—another person, an institution, a relationship—for our faltering lives, there is little chance of transformation, little hope that we will be reborn as the powerful self that we really are. Read more:
    • Why Christianity? (Last post by CableSteele)
    • I am not a perfect person. I get angry with people and lash out at them with my tongue. I try to be a good person, but I fail, almost daily. I see all these religions that offer peace or enlightenment, but none of them offer hope for a person who can't seem to get it right. The story of Jesus gives me real-world examples of how to act in a given situation. I know you said non-Biblical reasons, but I don't really know of any text that has more information about this Jesus character than the bible. If I was enamored with Buddha, I would read the Buddhacarita or the Mahāvastu (both full of beautiful stories btw). I identify with Jesus in a way that I just can't with Buddha, Krishna, Horus, Baldur, or Tyler Durden. My belief in Jesus assures me that everything will turn out for the best in any given situation. Sure, some people just believe that anyway, but I learned it through Christ, so I guess that is why I see it that way. I see the goddess is more of a ruler of nature. She is the nurturer of all life, but if you get on her bad side, she can be devastating. Christ does not give me any ultimatums like that. No matter how many times I fail, if I get up and return to him, he takes me back, no questions. It's a dynamic relationship where I go about my day considering how Jesus would respond to any given situation and he fills me with peace and joy. If I screw up, he comes alongside and says, "It's ok. Let's try again." Now that I think about it, it's really hard to explain unless you've experienced it for yourself. Isn't it like that with any religion? Joseph Campbell said it's all about personal experience. Well, I've had a "Christ" experience and I like it. The finger pointing that Christians are famous for is not what Jesus taught us to do. I hereby apologize for any wrongs that have been committed in the name of Jesus. If anyone has been hurt by a Christian, just know that it wasn't what Jesus wanted. When it comes to the way people treat each other, organized Christianity has failed miserably. Groups like LDS or the JWs are awesome at things like evangelism and loving each other, but put heavy restrictions on their members. The church I grew up in was a very progressive non-demonimational bible reading church with a female pastor. It was very far removed from "Southern Baptist," but my parents still imposed all kinds of religious restrictions on me because "the bible said so." However, I read the bible from more of a mythological perspective. I guess that's why I feel so comfortable in this community. I'm not trying to convince anyone that the Earth really stopped turning for 36 hours when Joshua asked God to stop the sun or claiming that Jesus actually walked on top of deep water. But I do believe that Jesus existed, he lived a perfect life, and he died to fix some kind of problem with the spirit of God so that we could all be one in the Force. This is what I believe. This is why I love Christ.
    • Lightsabers Anonymous (Last post by CryojenX)
    • Just checking in. It's been a very long time, but I can now look at sabers and not have the least desire to own them. I had to dig in and understand my motivations and the psychological meanings that I had been attaching to them. I still have the Saberforge Ka'Tano and a slightly customized version of my first saber. I'm considering perhaps putting the Ka'Tano up for auction someday, but I plan to hold on to the custom hilt to hold my ashes for family as I plan for this body to be cremated when I pass back to the Force. I feel so much freer now.
    • Weight Check-In Thread (Last post by thomaswfaulkner)
    • I'm a little late to the conversation. After getting hurt in the military and being honorably discharged in 2014 I had gained nearly 80 lbs in 2 years. My start weight as of February 2016 was 260. My wife and I tried cold turkey vegetarianism about the middle of the month but we had really bad food aggression because we couldn't satisfy our cravings. This lasted for 2 weeks. Since then, we have moved to a pescetarianism lifestyle and found it works out GREAT! My current weight is 214.6. My goal weight is my 170-180 range. I've attached our progress so far. [attachment] [attachment]
    • Force Realist TV (Last post by CryojenX)
    • Thanks for this video, as it's something I think I really needed to hear. I've always tended to trend on the "left" side of the political spectrum in many ways, and would often get angry when people who purport to be my friends would express a political opinion contrary to mine (usually because I took something personally, as is so dangerous with the nature of identity politics). Nowadays I find myself sliding closer to the middle politically, but it's always good to have a reminder that I took an oath to defend the Jedi path, and that can only be done by treating others with respect. I need to get more accustomed to surrounding myself with self-labeled conservatives. A Jedi's a Jedi.
    • Hidden Jedi Wisdom (Last post by Miss_Leah)
    • I wasn't sure where else to share this so I'm putting it here: I frequently re-read my favourite books from my childhood and I'm currently re-reading "The Secret Garden" I was struck by a passage that I felt was a wonderful reflection on the Force - but calling it another name: Magic. So I want to share it with all of you and hope it inspired you as much as it did me. (NB. I snipped away some of the extra bits of dialogue to make it no-so-long, while keeping the core of Colin's speech) I am going to try a scientific experiment, explained the Rajah. "When I grow up I am going to make great scientific discoveries, and I am going to begin now with this experiment. The scientific discoveries I am going to make will be about Magic. I am sure there is Magic in everything, only we have not sense enough to get hold of it and make it do things for us - like electricity and horses and steam. When Mary found this garden it looked quite dead. Then something began pushing things up out of soil and making things out of nothing. One day, things weren't there and another they were. I keep saying to myself "What is it? What is it?" It's something. It can't be nothing. I don't know its name so I call it Magic. I have never seen the sun rise, but Mary and Dickon have, and from what they tell me I am sure that is magic too. Something pushing it up and drawing it. Sometimes since I've been in the garden, I've looked up through the trees at the sky and I have had a strange feeling of being happy, as if something were pushing and drawing in my chest and making me breathe fast. Magic is always pushing and drawing and making thing out of nothing. Everything is made of Magic, leaves and trees, flowers and birds, badgers and foxes and squirrels and people. So it must be all around us. In this garden - in all the places. Every morning and evening, and as often in the daytime as I can remember, I am going to say "Magic is in me! Magic is making me well!" I am going to be as strong as Dickon!" And you must all do it too. That is my experiment. If you keep doing it every day as regularly as soldiers go through drill, we shall see what will happen and find out if the experiment succeeds. You learn things by saying them over and over and thinking about them until they stay in your mind forever and I think it will be same with Magic. If you keep calling it to come to you and help you, it will get to be part of you and it will stay and do things" I'm pretty sure that Colin is a Victorian Jedi ;)
    • 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.
    • 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.

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