The Jedi Master, Part 2

FALLEN JEDI:

The fallen Jedi is a tragic figure. Once a paragon of virtue, he or she has turned from the Jedi Code to pursue other goals. Though not necessarily an evil person, the fallen Jedi found the code too limiting or unrealistic, or perhaps didn't have the dedication to continue his or her studies. Chose your students wisely else you create one of these tragic figures.

A Jedi teacher encourages meditation and forethought, as well as strict observance of the Jedi Way in his students. As well as encouraging them to be mindful of the future, to open their minds to the countless possibilities that each action engenders, and to see which are the most likely to serve the greater good.

Many cultures have different understandings of the workings of the Force; "Witches", "Monks" and "Mystics" are but three such groups. Some ways of knowing the Force are different but no less noble or "good" than the Jedi Way, while others are clearly more neutral or even evil in intent. Because of the unique ways in which each of these viewpoints manipulates the Force, their skills and powers can vary dramatically. Here are a few points to consider when studying them.

That way's rules, skills and powers. Because of different perspectives, each "Way of knowing the Force" may have different Force skills and powers. Some methods use radically different skills and powers --- you consider all these rules.

How does the student gain skills and powers. Is there a set ritual or training regime to educate students. Some ways may use academies, while others may emphasize a close student and master relationship. Still others ways of the Force may be known only through meditation, myths, hidden writings or ancient rituals. What standards are the students expected to adhere to. Some methods of knowing the Force require students and practitioners to adhere to a strict code of conduct. Other methods may offer the student a great deal of personal freedom. What are the methods rules. What are the punishments for disobeying the rules --- will the student be cast out, not be taught new skills and powers … or will the student face involuntary servitude, and imprisonment or worse.

The definitions of "good" and "evil" vary from culture to culture … although the rules of the Force do not. Some ways of knowing the Force may be rooted in the dark side, requiring a student to commit evil to progress in his studies. The student, due to her culture, may accept these teachings as "perfectly natural," yet they will still drive the student to the brink of the dark side. When confronted with this moral challenge, those who are strong in the light side may be forced to leave the discipline and seek out another method of mastering the Force.

The Jedi Way is a rich tradition, certainly deep enough and wide enough to be approached and interpreted from a number of perspectives and still "survive" the translation into other fields of knowledge with many of its central tenets intact --- assuming, of course, that the translator approaches his task with integrity and thoroughness.

Strength is not just a matter of extensive territory and a large population, victory is not just a matter of efficient armaments, security is not just a matter of high walls, authority is not just a matter of strict orders and frequent punishments. Those who establish a viable organization will survive. Even if they are small, while those who establish a moribund organization will perish even if they are large.
You must be careful whom you teach the Jedi Arts to. For this art cannot be given to those who will use it bully other people. The Jedi arts are for those of good character who will protect people from evildoers. In fact, if the student does not have the right attitude, you could teach them for the rest of your life and theirs, and they still would not comprehend it.

Give your students certain exercises to make them healthier and stronger, telling them they cannot become spiritually strong if they are physically weak. Students should do supplementary exercises like running to increase their breathing powers and leg strength. They should do plenty of stretching to give them flexibility, making movement easier and lessening the chance of injury. They should do weight training to increase their strength, lifting light weights many times in a row. Weight training should not be confused with weight lifting --- lifting hundreds of pounds at one time; or with muscle building --- lifting weights to develop muscles primarily for looks.
The way of a Jedi Master must be in harmonizing people. When people are in harmony, they will not fight against each other, without being exhorted to do so. If the Masters and Knights are suspicious of each other, others will not join their group; if loyal advice is not heard, small minds will talk and criticize in secret. When hypocrisy sprouts, even if you have the wisdom of the most ancient Jedi you could not convince even one person, let alone a crowd of them.

When it comes to establishing rules and regulations, everyone, high and low, should be treated alike.

It is for sure, on the very coldest day of the year, when there is frost on the ground and a good strong wind that the instructor takes the students outside to train. For those who don't mind the cold there is always summer training. On a hundred-degree day in august, when people are too hot even to walk down the street, the Jedi students are taken for a run outside, farther then they have ever run in their lives, and then brought back to the training hall to work out some more --- with the windows closed.
To the outsider this looks like madness, but important lessons are being taught. Much to their surprise the students survive, and learn that not only did they not get terrible colds or frostbite in winter, or pass out and melt into puddles in summer, but also they even felt good after the workouts. What students learn from this is not that their teacher is cruel, but rather that their own bodies and minds can do much more than they ever dreamed possible. They learn that most limits they put on themselves were just made up in their own heads, and are not real at all.
The Jedi, like anything else, have to constantly improve from generation to generation, or from moment to moment, for that matter; not because "new" is better, but because each moment has left its mark on the next so that we need not repeat the same mistakes and inadequacies, and so that we can change with the changes. Tradition has much to teach us. However, it must serve our needs and not become our master. The Jedi is a forever-growing art. It will always have room for improvement.

It is vital that dedicated individuals and collective groups continue to expand and spread their knowledge for the furtherance of the art, rather than wasting energy and effort contending with the accomplishments of the past or protecting the status quo through the repression of original thought. Training methods and techniques are not carved in stone. There is still something left to be said by us latter-day mortals. This is not to say that the last word has been spoken in regard to the traditional approaches to the Jedi Way. We are not about to reject the old Masters. What is needed is a reawakening of lost ideals and natural principles, coupled with radical new techniques and procedures. There exists, engraved within the collective unconscious of the human race, forgotten knowledge always ready to surface into the conscious. All we need do is tap into our own inner selves through techniques, which are readily available to us.
Artificial lifestyles and arrogance have caused us to lose touch with the ancient wisdoms. Fear and complacency keep us from breaking free. Knowledge and wisdom do not come from man's distorted intellect but through our ability to discover and accept the natural and simple truth of our place in the universe. The Jedi as a concept and an idea never ceases to evolve. It continues to grow, expand and mature. It can only germinate in a vessel of experience, warmed with the spirit of innovation, encouraged by faithful enthusiasm, dedication and commitment.

Nothing begets one; one begets two; two begets three; three begets all things. All things are backed by the darkness and faced by the light, and harmonized by the Force. What others teach, I also teach: The daring and violent do not die a natural death. This (maxim) I shall regard as my instructor.

How can a Jedi see straight, when he does not even see himself and the darkness he unconsciously carries with him into all his dealings. Suffering accepted, darkness recognized, and sorrows understood are great assets to the authentic life of the spirit. Composure, serenity, and the authentic psychic strength all arise from the recognition and acceptance of the reality of evil and darkness, and not from their denial due to false optimism. From the ancient mythologies of the world, to the more modern religions, there has existed the notion that there is a "dark side" to all things. Wherever there is light, there is also shadow. And each of us has a dark side.

But what is this dark side in each of us? And how does it relate to the Jedi? The dark side of any person is comprised of those qualities that he or she considers negative. These negative parts of our selves are usually those parts that do not coincide with how we would like to think of ourselves. And these unacceptable aspects of our being are pushed out of awareness, or repressed. They become unconscious, and so we are no longer aware of them. With our negative and inferior qualities repressed, it would seem we would be done with them. But this is not the case. Even potentially positive aspects are transformed when they are repressed. In other words, the moment we fail to acknowledge certain aspects of ourselves they become negatively charged. The process does not end there, either. What is repressed, and no longer attributed to ourselves, is projected and experienced as a part of others. Indeed, we will never find our dark sides if we look inside ourselves. We find them when we look at others and experience types of people whom we have strong negative reactions to. Of course, most people are not interested in discovering their own dark sides. They are only interested in making sure they are right and others are wrong. As Jedi we must avoid this.

It takes tremendous courage to face our own dark side, to admit that we have qualities of being that we wish we were free from, to acknowledge our inferior sides. We all want to be strong, powerful, and secure, not the opposite. But the way of the Jedi is not found by ignoring our weaknesses, but by seeking them out, working with them, and "correcting" them. It is inherent in human nature that whatever is "different" is feared. Although this comes from our distant past, and is "designed" to aid our survival. It has persisted as a fundamental aspect of human psychology.

In order to understand the Force. You must first understand what the Force is. The Force is the energy, which fills the universe. There are three general types of Force Energy. The Universal Force, The Living Force and Personal Force energy. The Universal Force controls and affects all things. The Living Force affects all living things within the Universal Force. It is influenced and controlled by the Universal Force. The Personal Force affects the living thing that creates it. Both the Universal Force and the Living Force influence it. Since the Personal Force is part of both the Living and the Universal Forces, you must adjust yourself, to fit more smoothly into the natural cycle they follow. When training students. This is an important concept to pass on to them. Since the Universal Force has within it the Living Force. And with in the Universal and Living Force lives man with his Personal Force. Their actions affect all three.

The ultimate goal and purpose of the Jedi way is to find a peaceful and natural state. In order to reach this goal you must first understand your body and how it works within the Force. This state makes it possible for you to find the origin of your life, and to combine your Personal Force with that of the Living Force and through it with that of the Universal Force. As well as focusing both of them through you. You should do your best to spread the ideas. What do you care if they are not accepted? It is not for you to force others to accept. But for you to offer the way.

If you begin to teach a man who is not deeply concerned or determined to find out the truth, you should try and stimulate his thinking, by offering one-forth of what he seeks to learn. If the man does not go back and reflect and think out the implications in the remaining three-fourths for himself, he is not serious about learning.

For everyone called to teach there are seven cardinal directions to be attend to:

1) Cultivating their personal conduct.
2) Honoring worthy men & women.
3) Cherishing affection for, and doing their duty toward, their family.
4) Showing respect to those who taught them.
5) Identifying themselves with the lessons to be taught.
6) Encouraging the introduction of all useful arts.
7) Taking interest in the welfare of their students.

A wise teacher constantly goes over what he has learned; in doing so he gains some new knowledge each time. For one who goes over what he has already learned and gains new understanding from it is worthy to be a teacher.

Whenever walking in a company of three, you can always find a teacher among them (Or one who has something to teach you). Select a good person and follow his example, or see a bad person and correct such things in yourself.

When you find a person worthy to talk to and fail to talk to him, you have lost your man. When you find a man unworthy to talk to and you talk to him, you have lost (wasted) your words. A wise man neither loses his man, nor loses his words.