Much of the wisdom which we hold true and follow comes from the fiction. Many of us sought out the Jedi path because of the fiction. Even those that did not, still follow the fiction in part and use it as a basis for their view of the path. It is for this reason that I am undertaking a study of Jedi Wisdom as it is seen in the fiction. Not just its study, but also its interpretation in my point of view.
Tales of the Jedi: The Golden Age of the Sith is a Graphic Novel written by Kevin J. Anderson and printed by Dark Horse Comics. All of the following quotes are the knowledge I witnessed in that work, along with the character that spoke them.
You would be content to spend your entire life in the company of your scrolls and documents, but a Jedi Knight has other responsibilities, other duties.
How many of you have a hobby that could take most of your waking time? How many of you enjoy your hobby so much that you could do only that for the rest of your lives? I know I have such a hobby. It is fun, creative, and can gently let time slip away without my knowing it.
But we are Jedi. We can do what we enjoy, but there are greater things we must accomplish. Our path does not let us live our lives for ourselves only, but for the betterment of all others around us. This does not mean that we must neglect our hobbies, but we must not let ourselves get lost in them, either.
Allow yourself time to do what you will, but also allow yourself time to help improve the world around you. Volunteer with a local youth sports team during the week and then sit in a comfortable chair reading your favorite book over the weekend. Help out at a homeless shelter for a few days, and then spend a day to play your favorite video games. Work the days at a local Recreation Center and then spend the evenings building your model boats.
The major point is that we should not neglect our personal responsibilities when we spend time among more pleasurable pursuits. We are Jedi, as such we must make sacrifices.
Learn the necessity of action as well as words.
This might be something that many Jedi see as an odd approach to a situation. Yet, as we all know, words will not solve all problems. This is not saying that you should seek conflict when words are useless, quite the opposite. You should know how effective actions can be when words fail.
An action, as meant above, does not mean violence. It means knowing when to do something other than talking. In a conflict situation, it may mean reacting in a manner to defend yourself or others. In a simple argument, it may mean knowing when to stop talking and walk away.
Walking away… Is this not the ultimate end to every argument? It does not prove your opponent right, it also does not prove you wrong; it proves that you are smart enough to know that a conflict of wills is a waste of time and energy.
There is a time to talk and a time to act. Likewise, there is a time when simple words are meaningless… that is the time for action.
A Jedi must act when he is called upon.
When you see a person along the side of a deserted road, looking in frustration at a flattened tire, what do you do? When you see a group chasing a single person into an alley, the group looking violent and the person looking scared, what do you do? When you see an accident along the side of the road, and there is nobody else around, yet you think you see someone in one of the vehicles, what do you do?
In all of these cases, you are being called upon to act. Perhaps it is not to get directly involved, but it is a call for action nonetheless. Be a good Samaritan and help change a tire, use your cell phone and call the authorities, render medical aid if you can. It is as simple as that.
You cannot right every wrong or ease every suffering, attempting that would be the path to madness. However, you know your limits, you know your experience, and you know where and how you can aid those in need. With that in mind, you must act when called upon.
A Jedi must always be ready.
There is an emergency. People are in pain, suffering. They cry out to you for aid. Are you ready to help them?
Most people in this situation will say “yes,” but are they being truthful with themselves? If there were to be a major earthquake in your city right now, would you be ready to help anyone? Would you be able to help yourself?
These are things you must keep in mind. Keep an emergency kit in your home, in your vehicle, in your office. But it does not stop there. Keep a medical kit as well in those places, and carry one with you also. But again, are you ready for every situation?
Can you defend yourself or others? If not, then do you have a self-defense tool? Pepper spray, mace, a taser, all of these things offer non-lethal alternatives to a threatening situation. But still these do not cover every scenario.
How can you always be ready? Be smart. Know what to do in a situation. Know how to survive a disaster. Know when to use what your experiences to aid others. Knowledge. Knowledge is the key to being ready. With knowledge, you will always be ready.
New things must not frighten a Jedi.
Jedi are always learning, always exploring. In this, we surround ourselves with new things all the time. These things should not be feared, for fear leads to the Dark Side. These things should be embraced and made known to us.
You should seek out that which you do not know, not shy away from it. Change is exciting and should be embraced, not rejected and ignored. For how can we truly stop change from happening?
If the Force is in all things, it is never too late.
How many times have you missed the buss and began to despair? There will be another bus. How many times have you missed a deadline and thus missed your promotion? There will be other promotions. How many times have you been too late? If the Force is in all things, then it is never too late.
As a Jedi, we must always be patient. Sometimes this means missing a deadline rather than rushing. Rushing anything leads to mistakes, and mistakes lead to problems down the road. However, we also know that the future is always in motion. That motion promises us new opportunities even if we missed the present ones.
Do not despair should you miss a simple deadline. Despair is one of the paths to the Dark Side. Trust in the Force. For if the Force is in all things, then it is never too late.
We must protect innocents from predators.
Jedi protect those who cannot protect themselves. We protect those who are innocent from the evil that preys upon that innocence. To do otherwise is unconscionable. This protection is not just physical, as not all Jedi have that ability. The protection can be anything from simply being observant around areas in which the innocent frolic to assisting those who police the predators.
Be aware of your surroundings while at the parks and malls. Look for those things that are out of place, those people who do not seem to fit. Be aware of where the innocent are, where the eyes of their guardians are, and whether they have guardians or not. Even should you make a mistake of predator for guardian, an apology and explanation will go further than if you had hesitated and the innocent were harmed.
Be aware of who the predators are in your area. Most can be viewed at the local police station and post office. More detailed information can be found online. Be aware of where they live, where the frequent, their preferred target, and what they look like. Do not become a vigilante, following them through their every move, but instead be wary of when they are near that upon which they prey. Not all continue their evil, some have reformed yet still must declare themselves predators.
Do not mistake my words for only one kind of predator. I mean not just those who prey upon children, but all that prey upon innocents. Age does not preclude innocents. Gender does not preclude innocents. Class does not preclude innocents. An innocent is a person who does not warrant such a fate, no matter their past actions.
You do not have to kill, you must look for gentler ways to solve problems.
When confronted with a violent situation, it is common to react with the same violence. Should a person attack you, your actions will be to reciprocate with the same force or greater to defend yourself. You need not do this, for then you are not reacting with peace, yet with emotion.
Whether you are being attacked or you are protecting others who cannot defend themselves, you must never use more force than you need to. If your opponent is armed, then disarm them and ask if they wish to continue. If your opponent is knocked to the ground, then pin them and ask if they wish to continue. If your opponent wishes to evade, then do not give chase to bring punishment upon them. Instead, you should let them go and report the incident to the local authorities. You are a Jedi, it is not up to you to bring justice upon those who commit crimes, but to bring those criminals to justice.
Though it may be difficult to interpret at times, the Force does not lie.
Whether you are shown a vision in a dream or given a feeling while walking about your day, the Force can reveal itself in many ways. Of all of those ways, the most prevalent is a “bad feeling.” No matter how the Force reveals itself to you, you must remember that it is always truthful.
The Force in all of its forms can be said to work in mysterious ways. Of those, sometimes it is a random event opening before you or a vision that is a daydream. Even our dreams themselves can contain messages from the Force. Their interpretations can be difficult, but they will always be truthful.
Do not let your fascination blind you.
It is alright to be awed by situations or surroundings you may encounter within your life. But, be only awed by them. Keep aware of your surroundings and your situation.
How man tourists are robbed while visiting the most majestic places in the world? How many times has a person been standing, admiring a timeless creation from a time past, and a criminal just walked up and gently slipped the person’s wallet from their trousers? Now, ask yourself, why did this happen? Was it because the criminal was good at their trade? Possibly, but it was also made easy by the person being blinded by their fascination.
Keep your situational awareness. With it, you can see far more than your eyes will let you. Without it, you open yourself to the predators that lurk in the shadows.