Institute FAQ

The Institute originally began as the Academy at Jedi.org. This site, created in 2002, was run by Relan Volkum. Many of the leaders of the Institute began their training and teaching at the original Academy. However, in 2006 Relan’s path led elsewhere. As the site was being handed over to a different group of people, the leaders of the Academy felt a neutral location was needed to ensure the integrity of the training process. We moved to our own domain as The Jedi Academy. In the summer of 2008, our webhost deleted our site without warning. We took the opportunity to rename ourselves as the Institute for Jedi Realist Studies, a name we felt encompassed our larger goals. While the name and location has changed over time, the lineage remains. We could not know what was to come back in 2006, but we remain, continuing to train Jedi and deepen our understanding of the Jedi path in our world.

The Institute was born out of the Jedi Academy, the evolution of the Academy at JEDI, at a time when many online training options and instructors were dwindling in number. The goal of the Institute is two fold. First, provide a supportive community for any Jedi free of fighting and negativity. While disagreements occur, everyone is expected to behave in a courteous manner, as a Jedi. Second, to provide structured Jedi training that builds a solid foundation for the future. We recognize that our path is relatively young, therefore we train so whatever the role of a Jedi is in the future, we will be ready.

In addition, there has always been a need for greater cooperation and unity between training systems and groups. The Institute was also formed to address these problems in a way that didn’t infringe on the autonomy of groups involved. The goal is to recognize the common elements between training sites and provide some equivalency between sites. This means that a student can move between affiliate sites, training as best suits their life without having to start over. Equivalency is also worked out with ranks. Once a student attains a rank at one affiliate, it is honored at all affiliates (and in fact may have undergone trials with members of multiple affiliates). The affiliate aspect is still a work in progress as it takes intimate knowledge of each site’s training system. If you are from a site that may be interested in affiliation, contact us and we can begin the discussion.

Unless your rank was granted by an Affiliate using the same standards as all Institute Affiliates, your rank does not automatically transfer. Depending on your level of experience you may take trials for the rank closest to your level of knowledge. Or we may discuss your background; perhaps create a modified trial to determine your level of knowledge to determine what courses you need to bring you up to speed. We don’t, however, hand out rank easily. Rank is not just a way to measure the level of knowledge a person has, but also whether they have internalized the Jedi path, as shown by their behavior and attitude. That requires us knowing you for more than a week. Therefor, unless you have been given permission to use your rank with us, we ask that you leave it at the door and join a place where it is the learning and sharing that matters, not the rank. The reason for this is that we are taking a big picture view of the Jedi community. Currently, most people interact online because there are not Jedi in their local area that they are aware of. However, the Jedi path is one that is lived and practiced offline, so standards are set to have meaning offline as well as online. While our standards are high, all students are given the tools to reach those standards. Whether or not you have the goal of attaining rank within the Institute, you will find Jedi training of value in your day to day life. If you would like examples, just ask anyone who has been training for a short while and they’ll be able to provide examples from their work, school, or relationships.

Training occurs in many ways. Formal training through the Academy is taught using self paced courses under the guidance of an instructor. Informal training occurs on the discussion forum and through occasional seminars. For more information, please explore the training menu, starting here.

Becoming an Affiliate involves a process of discussing the requirements for each rank defined at the Institute, as well as how those ranks are attained. While this seems rather straight forward, history tells us it isn’t so. We do not mean to infer that a site is of poor quality if it is not an Affiliate. There are many reasons why a website is not an Affiliate, including that we simply don’t know of its existence. If you have a training facility and would like to become an Affiliate, please contact us.

Jedi Realist FAQ

There are no formal temples or offline academies that we are aware of at this time. However, there are groups of people who meet around the world for training and fellowship. One way to find them is through the Jedi Resource Center, http://jediresourcecenter.org/. There you can find chapters and individuals in your area, if there are any. They also provide guidance so you can form your own group if one does not exist. There are also facebook groups for various locations that you can search for. 

The membership of IJRS comes from around the world. If you are looking for people in a particular area, ask. You never know, someone may live quite close to you already! Also, every year there is at least one Jedi gathering in the United States with smaller regional gatherings as they are organized. Other opportunities for in person meetings come during travel. Just meeting over a quick meal on a road trip can greatly enhance the connections we form online. 

When we will be an offline academy is unknown, but when that day comes it will be because of the hard work and foundation put into place today!

There are many versions of the Jedi Code.  We typically refer to the four line or Anderson code as the Jedi Code, as that appeared first in the fiction (in the order of book release, not the fictional timeline).  There are many variations however, as we will bow to Wookieepedia for a useful description of the different codes.  We cover the meaning of the Jedi Code in the Creed 101 course, for those interested in Academy training.

(from http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Jedi_Code)

One of the key portions of the Code was a five-line mantra. Several versions of the mantra exist, though the older version was:

    Emotion, yet peace.
    Ignorance, yet knowledge.
    Passion, yet serenity.
    Chaos, yet harmony.
    Death, yet the Force.

The refined version established by Odan-Urr was perhaps the best known:

    There is no emotion, there is peace.
    There is no ignorance, there is knowledge.
    There is no passion, there is serenity.
    (There is no chaos, there is harmony.)(*)
    There is no death, there is the Force.
    – The Jedi Code (Based on the meditations of Odan-Urr)

(*)The fourth line “There is no chaos, there is harmony,” is removed in some Jedi texts. At the Funeral of Mara Jade Skywalker, for instance, this line was omitted.

The Jedi Code was rewritten by Grand Master Luke Skywalker upon reestablishing the Jedi Order in the Galaxy:

    Jedi are the guardians of peace in the galaxy.
    Jedi use their powers to defend and to protect.
    Jedi respect all 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.

Jedi Realist is a term meant to distinguish the Jedi of the real world from the Jedi of fiction, often shortened to Jedi, leaving the term Realist implied.

Jedi are people who seek to emulate the Jedi Knights as presented in the fictional Star Wars universe by embracing the Jedi’s virtues and strengths and expressing them in the real world.  Jedi are called by the Force to direct their actions in a direction that serves humanity, seeking to embody the principles outlined in the Core Values, and constantly pursuing self-development and training in all areas of mastery, including mental, physical, spiritual and psychic.

The Core Values of the Jedi encompass many areas.  A Jedi

1. Has faith and confidence in the Force and the inner strength and guidance it provides,

2. Disciplines and trains the mind to gain knowledge, a strong will and serenity,

3. Disciplines and trains the body to develop and maintain health and wellness in support of the Jedi’s work,

4. Disciplines and trains the spirit through a conscious connection to the Force, gaining focus and discretion,

5. Acknowledges emotions without allowing them to alter their actions or vision.

6. Strives to achieve balance in all areas of life.

7. Respects and defends life in all its forms.

8. Is a guardian of peace and justice.

9. Approaches life with courage and honesty to gain wisdom.

10. Humbly undertakes service for the betterment of all.

11. Practices compassion and patience toward others as well as the self.

12. Views the world critically and objectively, with a willingness to challenge conventional thinking.

13. Accepts the responsibility to pass on their knowledge to willing students of the Force.

In the myth created by George Lucas, anyone can wear a cloak and any number of beings has the ability to wield the Force for good or ill. The lightsaber, however, is the symbol of the Jedi. It is the badge of membership in the order and it is a Jedi’s only prized possession.

Obviously, the technology to create a lightsaber as it appears in the Star Wars mythos is far beyond our current knowledge. A Jedi Realist doesn’t have access to a lightsaber – or does she?

Let us take a moment to reflect on what a lightsaber is…

A lightsaber is first and foremost a weapon, more specifically a sword. The blade is a focused beam of light that can cut through almost any material. It is a perfect metaphor for spiritual practice, focused illumination that can pierce through delusion to expose the very heart of reality. For the Jedi Realist, the construction of a lightsaber is not a step along the path, but the path itself. In the mythology, a Jedi was responsible for building his own lightsaber, from gathering materials to the actual construction and empowerment of the device. A teacher or master can only offer a blueprint, but the student is responsible for taking that blueprint and tweaking it to his needs, based on his own experiences, understanding and judgment. Constructing a lightsaber takes a little time and effort, perfecting a lightsaber takes a lifetime.

The path you have chosen to undertake can provide you with a formidable tool to aid you in all aspects of life. A light to illuminate the world and a weapon to slay your own demons.

So the Jedi Realist does learn to build a lightsaber, just not a laser sword. The Jedi Realist builds the lightsaber of the heart and mind. Just as the daisho of the samurai represented his soul and his honor, so to is the Jedi’s lightsaber. It is an extension of his being, it is his being. The Jedi and the lightsaber are not separate from each other or from the world in which he lives.

– by Rev R

No.  While some individuals and groups choose to follow Jedi as a religion, referred to as Jediism, the Jedi Realist path does not require this.  Instead we view the Jedi path as an active life philosophy.  If your interested in more about the distinction there are discussions on the discussion forum to help you.  Individuals following the Jedi Realist path may follow any spiritual path they choose so long as the values of that path are in agreement with the Jedi path.

We are not a church and have no ranks or roles associated with churches or religions of any kind. If you want to be a minister you need to find a group that has such a role and offers certification.

Load More