I want to spend a few minutes today talking to you about perceptions, or how people view Jedi. I’m not going to be talking just about how outsiders see us, but also how other Jedi view us.
As you know, there is no one set definition for Jedi. Each one of us holds a slightly different view of what a Jedi should be. You need to realize that the same hold true for groups of Jedi. Whether it be this class, the Jedi Council, or the entire website as a whole, each gathering has a different dynamic, which also means a different perception. Think about the following sites for a moment: JEDI, Jedi Realist Academy, Jediism, Force Academy, and Jedi Unity. If you are familiar with them, you will know that each has a slightly different perception. Why? Because, each is dealing with different people, experiences, and ideas. So every group (or individual) that shares a common idea shares a particular perception of their surroundings and what they stand for.
This is pretty basic stuff, right?
Of course, when we gather together as a large group it is harder to create that general perception. Because there are more people, each with his or her own ideas, goals, and opinions, it becomes harder to talk. I’ll use Jediism as an example. I know I have mentioned before that those at Jediism truly believe that being a Jedi is a religion. This is vastly different from our Jedi Realist way of life. Each group has a different perception, and it could be difficult to come to the same perception during the course of a conversation.
What this means is that when you plant o work with another individual or group, you need to be aware of what their perceptions are. If there is a person who needs your help, attempt to learn how they see things first or you may give them advice that really holds no merit for them. Remember, the greatest truth is that there is no one truth.
Okay, enough on perceptions within the Jedi Community. What about those outside the community? How do they view us?
I will be perfectly honest, in most cases their perceptions of us are less than flattering. People have a very difficult time separating us from the movies. They call us Star Wars fanatics, obsessed, and unable to separate the movies from our real lives. For example, I have been laughed at and mocked more times than I care to remember by both friends and family, and those that do accept don’t necessarily believe.
I know that you have probably all seen posts around the community calling for the creation of a real, physical Jedi temple. This is, ultimately, the goal that many Jedi are working towards. Unfortunately, until the perceptions of non-Jedi Realists change, this dream will probably not become a reality. Until we are accepted, people will continue to see us as nothing more than crackpots. We would not be able to openly practice our beliefs and help those we have dedicated