"Not Serious but Sincere" - or The Romanticisation of Jediism
Kyrin Wyldstar wrote:
ren wrote: Jediism isn't about service.
V-Tog wrote: The spirituality is what begets the service.
I think point proven here...
V-Tog wrote: But once on the service path, without continuing to be supported by the spiritual ideals, the service loses its meaning.
Why does service have to be supported by Jediism ideals in order to have meaning?
It's my perspective that Jediism simply advocates doing genuine good in the world, without explicitly making it about being a "Good Jedi ", but simply because it's a good thing to do, rather than as a means to boost your own standing within the community.
I also feel the "lack of direction/leadership" has more to do with keeping an individual's perceived options for service as broad as possible. Over-instruction leads to overly narrow ideas of what can/should be done, with the same pitfall of acting purely in the interest of looking good, now with a false expectation for how to achieve that.
Actively engaging in service, or, "Doing good for goodness sake " is within Jedi ideals, and encouraged, but even within the lore, there are diverse opinions and perspectives on what that looks like, especially within the Jedi (I refer to the original KOTOR games, and "The Jedi Path " for such examples).
Many people feel they need some motivation, still, and spiritual guidance and ideals often provide that for people, but Jediism seems to me one of few paths that, as a religion, views validation and recognition as strictly incidental, with no bearing on ones expectations for the afterlife.
I hope I've made sense, here, and been clear in my contribution to the discussion ^_^U
Kelrax "Stormcaller" Lorcken, Jedi Navigator
May The Force Guide You
It's actually why I think jediists are less likely to don robs and swing sabers then jedi realists, the later perhaps needing that more superficial connection to the fictional Jedi to support the rather dry philosophical position. Certainly in my time in the community it was always the realists getting dressed up for pictures more seriously then the few jediists who did it. It's funny actually, it used to be said by realists that it was a realism versus philosophical distinction, and now I hear it being said its a philosophical versus religious distinction. A shift to the jediism perhaps!? But one thing is for sure there is an overlap in most areas between realism and jediism.
But the whole premise that dressing up and swinging a saber is somehow bad... is just wrong and effectively attacking a persons religious path. It motivates, it exercises, it might even be fun! Don't worry what other people think. Just because a person chooses to belittle an activity by some framework of standard does not mean their opinion on it has any value. Not all people can do all things, not all things are available to all people, some people have already done things and are doing this because its different, some people are doing these things for different and potentially more valuable reasons.... the list goes on as to why any nature of self discipline and self development can be a positive and appropriate focus. To me the more important thing is making sure what a Jedi is doing is connecting to how they see the Jedi path for them.
I agree with VTog, ren, et al, its not about the service.... service just happens to be on the examples of things which come out of the focus.
For example when we help a problem pregnancy result in life, it may appear like we are doing a service to society. Yet interfering with the natural order and the principles of evolution from which we spawn, we are doing a disservice to humanity. But is disservice to humanity all this bad? Countless fish agree: the closer humans get to extinction the better.
The same logic could be applied to any subject in relation to service....
For the simple reason service is completely subjective. Service is what we personally like. The more other people also like the same thing, the more we believe our taste to be right, and the more we feel those who disagree are wrong/unpleasant, and that their actions are a disservice while ours are a service.
In other words, the need to serve is nothing more than an ego trip.
Convictions are more dangerous foes of truth than lies.
So I don't think one needs to attack a person to motivate them for example. The breaking someone down to build them up is called brainwashing, most common with indoctrination where its usually really superficial stuff like rules and expectations, but can go further into beliefs and worldview. It's usually a better long term outcome if the person already adheres to the values being introduced beforehand, because then that sort of 'training' serves to build conviction and capability - but otherwise a person will tend to revert and sometimes even regret, AFAIK.... or fight it if its not of accepted authority or evidently not suitable. This is where the 'masks' are superficial and role models in the same way are like applied paradigms of being, just usually chosen by the person. So if chosen by the person, yes it can build that conviction of being, but its fair to wonder if the resultant capabilities are really useful!? It's probably up to the individual but I think its wrong to assume they will not be useful or appropriate just because they are narrow to that area of application.
Better to ask, explore, relate and then one will be in a better position to support in whatever way they can (be it critical or enabling) in a much more real way rather then an ego judgementalism. There is an course which looks interesting on Coursera called 'Intellectual Humility: Theory', asking questions like 'What is intellectual humility?', 'What is an intellectual virtue?', and 'How do we know who is intellectually humble?'.
^^ starting April 4 no less
Consider the following
A Jedi never acts from hatred, anger, fear, or aggression but acts when calm and at peace with the Force.
Jedi are the guardians of peace in the galaxy.
Jedi use the powers to defend and to protect, never to attack others.
Jedi respect life, in any form.
Jedi serve others rather than ruling over them, for the good of the galaxy.
Jedi seek to improve themselves through knowledge and training.
It is in our role, in the path, to get out there and do some good in the world. Whether it simply be in your office, your construction site, nightclub, restaurant, school, military service. There are ways for all walks of life to be a Jedi, if one cares to look for them. A big part of training elsewhere focuses on how we can be Jedi in our daily lives. I did it in construction, I do it in nightclubs and I do it in my counselling office.
To recline comfortably in your armchairs, high above in your ivory towers, and see what cherrypicked facet of Zen or Christianity you can shoehorn into the Jedi framework this time, is not Jedi. It's fandom-inspired navel gazing. Cosplay is fine, fanfiction is fine. Hell - saber choreography looks like fun. But don't dress those up as Jedi practice.
Or maybe I'm just seeing a fundamental difference in the experience between Jediists and Jedi Realists.
Passion, authenticity, power, victory.
Williamkaede wrote: Or maybe I'm just seeing a fundamental difference in the experience between Jediists and Jedi Realists.
Which is what though? Jediists don't exclude service, its just that its not the defining attribute. No need to throw the baby out with the bathwater. If realists are only about service, then its probably just then that jediism is a broader path.
And I think it would be incorrect to define something by its differences alone (which might be the root of judgementalism perhaps). It's better IMO to define something by its extents... and sometimes there is overlap which creates both differences and shared attributes.
Passion, authenticity, power, victory.
Williamkaede wrote: I'd say a definition based on similarities and differences, depending on what the differences are. I agree - defining something by what it's not is silly. But if there is a fundamental difference of focus and experience it may be worth having a think about.
Which is why I am asking. Are you saying realists might choose to view a capability to serve as a measure of being a Jedi? And that then must mean they are no longer a Jedi when they cease meeting those standards? Who sets the standards, and who asserts those standards upon others, and how much effort is required to discover that before making a value judgement about it?
It really sounds like the distinction is a belief in the Force to me, eg a Jediist defines themselves as believing in the Force and uses that Force to act..... while a realists uses action to define themselves. This would align with the assertion that realists base their action from philosophy and jediists approach it as a spirituality or religion.
I ask because saying a person is 'reclining comfortably in there armchairs, high above in ivory towers, and see what cherrypicked facet of Zen or Christianity can be shoehorned into the Jedi framework' is not a Jedi, to me seems to ignore that they might be there because they'd done what you might define as hard work, or unable to do it, or taking a break from it. To me being a Jedi is about all thought, all feeling, and all action. So from that proposed realist perspective, for a realist it would not be the action of the Jedi, but from a jediist perspective it could be.
And if realists use philosophy to underpin action, but do not philosophize, then how is their philosophy error checked, refined and improved!? Trial and error only works so far, and the more pedestrian the easier it is to do... the complex and dangerous stuff needs to be thought out before hand.
I'm all for realists or anyone to use their paths to motivate, but as I was saying I do not think its required or useful to attack others in the process. I think the skill in motivation being attempted by doing that is actually instead talking to the concern of the recipient regarding failure and then holding up the ideals of the directed effort itself as the goal, rather then tear other ideals down for a perception of it being better.
The realist (I won’t speak to what the Jediist believes) recognizes that the Force cannot be the defining characteristic of the Jedi, for the Sith do exactly this as well. Watch the films , read the fiction(, add Disney canon too!), several other groups believe in the Force and use it to act. Thus, the defining difference cannot be the Force. The belief in and use of it earns us a place simply under the title of “Force Realist”- of which Jediism is a sub-group (a fairly large one at that).
So if the Force cannot be the defining factor, what must define us against the others? The philosophy, but more than that: It -is- the combination of service and adherence to the Jedi Code. The Jedi Code is framed in such a way that it was intended to facilitate the role of the Jedi in the world.
Let’s look over those fictional inspirations again: they were designed with the hero’s journey in mind. And not the personal hero either, but rather the “Epic Hero”. In contrast, the Sith are designed as the “Personal Heroes”, those that conquer their own lives. Personal Heroes need not be villains, but in the case of the fiction, the Sith ended up in this place by virtue of their additional philosophy to obtain power by any means necessary. Their pride and ego defined them against the selflessness and civilization focus of the Jedi.
“Who sets the standards, and who asserts those standards upon others, and how much effort is required to discover that before making a value judgement about it?” -Adder
If the person claiming to be a Jedi isn’t setting it for themselves based on the truth of the tenets laid before them, then we are already at a loss of helping them achieve the standard.
A person always has some value, but they have to define their personal value above the afforded limit. I’ll go on the record and define that a surgeon’s value (even if they are a jerk) would still hold more value than I do based on their skills alone. In many regards, I think THIS is a component missing in the discussions of the Jedi Path, that value is not based on whether or not you live by the Jedi Path. No one that is a Jedi looks down on those which are not. Unlike modern Fundamental Christianity, we recognize that your path in life is a choice and those choices are not for us to force down your throat.
So we get to “how much effort?”. A hierarchal structure is present to reward people for their adherence to the Jedi Path and encourage followers to achieve it. If you aren’t willing to set the standard of what a role model for the path looks like, why pursue a role in the hierarchy? If you pursue it for personal recognition, you are following the path of the Personal Hero (in case it’s completely missed on others- I have nothing but respect for real life Sith, and I am more than happy with helping a person achieve a personal hero’s journey), and not the Epic.
Can someone in the hierarchy know the difference? Sometimes, but it’s not always apparent, and if a few slip through the cracks it’s understandable. Ultimately the structure must be setup with a belief that the path holds value, and that it is something everyone who chooses the path should want to improve. If this isn’t the case, then the Path becomes less and less a belief system and more and more a fan club of personalities enamored with Star Wars.