While taking the idea of the Jedi and making it a real philosophy was possible, the physics behind making a real light saber are a little more difficult.
To us, the light saber is a symbol more than a physical weapon. It is a symbol of cutting through the darkness, of providing protection, illumination, and warmth to the Jedi. As a blade, the light saber cuts not just on one side, but all sides, thus symbolizing that no matter where the problem lies, a Jedi is ready to handle it.
If you stop to think about it, the fictional light sabers in the movies must be terribly dangerous things in untrained hands. Just look at how often amateur martial artists accidentally hit themselves with their practice weapons. Even many with training and experience do this from time to time, though usually with less impact. But with a light saber, you have a handle from which a beam of light extends. Anything this light touches gets sliced.
As such, the light saber, to us, is a symbol of mastering self-control. A Jedi must be in complete control, no matter what is going on. This is a life long lesson we all continue to study.
So to answer the question, my light saber is in my philosophy. It is a reminder of control, a guiding light, a source of power, and a tool. Some day, I may buy a model of a light saber in order to have a tangible reminder of this philosophy, but not yet.
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The obvious question is why would anyone want to study and practice to become a real-world equivalent of a fictional order of warrior monks?
Stranger things have happened. Some people study fictitious languages to the point of translating literature. At least becoming a real Jedi has some philosophical benefits. Throughout Jedi training, a student learns to still the mind, think clearly, assess any situation, and act appropriately. Jedi training teaches the student to be prepared for anything and to become an active observer.
The Jedi Temple will soon be compiling a training syllabus. Bookmark this site and keep checking back!
The Personal Force is the manifestation of The Force that effects each individual differently. A Jedi’s training must, of necessity, begin in learning the Personal Force, for this is the manifestation which defines the Jedi’s interactions with everything.
The Living Force and the Unifying Force are universal, but the Personal Force is different for everyone. We begin inside, focusing on ourselves and from there branch outward to the Living Force and eventually the Unifying Force.
The Personal Force is like an overlay, a filter which we all use to connect to existence – to all that is.
When out knowledge of the Personal Force is strong, we can connect to other people and things. Our connection to all that it becomes stronger. When out Personal Force is weak, we retreat into a world which is less and less connected, a world unique unto ourselves. Some call it madness. All but the most catatonic have some amount of Personal Force connection. Even those in a coma have some connection. A strong Personal Force connection will help the Jedi maintain sanity in the face of seemingly insane observations.
Without that first step to connect to the Personal Force, there is no connection. With it, the Jedi becomes tuned in, so to speak, with his environment and those he shares it with. The Personal Force is the connection between the “me” and the “not me”.
We must begin our mastery of the mind by working on and improving our own minds.
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The way of the Jedi is to live in harmony with The Force.
You can believe that The Force is God, a force of nature, a scientific phenomenon, or whatever. It is inconsequential. The Force is. It does not judge who uses it or what you may believe about it. The Force does not judge you, though those with whom you interact may.
The Force surrounds us and binds us together.
This is the “Light side/Dark side” dichotomy.
Light or dark side, The Force is the same. As mostly beneficial beings, we seek to walk on the Light Side. We choose how we use The Force. The Jedi choose to use it for good causes.
The universe is dark. Darkness is the absence of light. As Jedi, we choose to create Light rather than remaining in the darkness. The Jedi choose the Light side. We choose to make a positive difference in the world.
The Force manifests in three ways: the Unifying Force, the Living Force, and the Personal Force.
The Personal Force is how it manifests in each individual. Each individual is unique and thus will tap into The Force in different ways. The Force also effects each individual in unique ways. To learn to make use of the Personal Force, a Jedi practices introspective meditation, observation, and continual self-improvement. Thus a Jedi can utilize The Force in him or her own self.
The Living Force is the force of Life itself. Through mastery of the Living Force, a Jedi can sense the health of a living thing and make changes to heal it. This is the manifestation of The Force that allows a Jedi to communicate with beings who’s language he may not know or who may not even have a formalized tongue. It is what gives the ability to seemingly read minds or control the thoughts or actions of other living things. The Jedi learn to tap the Living force through application of the Personal Force to biology, physiology, medicine, psychology, martial arts, and similar studies.
The Unifying Force is the manifestation of The Force which ties all things together. Time and space are how we perceive the Unifying Force. Through our knowledge of the Unifying Force, Jedi can sense the way things happen, the interaction between things, people, groups, objects, and time.
By careful study and practice, a Jedi comes to be in harmony with The Force. To an extent, he can control it. To an extent it can use him as an instrument. When in harmony with The Force, a Jedi becomes a powerful and beneficial being.
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A Jedi chooses to move freely in the world, both as a part of society and not attached to it. A Jedi must be able to move freely in and out of situations as needed. We must be able to interact with any facet of any society and still be able to withdraw to make our observations unhindered by outside influences. This is what makes a Jedi such a good diplomat.
The Jedi are Universal Diplomats
Due to the nature of Jedi training and philosophy, we make excellent diplomats. Keen powers of observation and reasoning, a quiet mind, and sharp focus give the Jedi the ability to tread carefully in tricky situations.
Through meditations on the Unifying Force, a Jedi can often sense the intentions of others. Though it may sometimes seem that way, there is nothing supernatural about it. The Jedi study many things, including human psychology. With this knowledge and the use of a clear mind through meditation, a Jedi can draw upon his own subconscious to interpret extremely subtle cues and make sense out of seemingly disparate information.
Through detachment, a Jedi can go into the situation unburdened by preconceived notions and prejudices. This is not to say that the Jedi are perfect in this sense, but that Jedi training allows one to see those prejudices and acknowledge them. From there, it is a small step to brushing them aside when they are not wanted.
These factors leave the Jedi free to pursue diplomatic goals in a beneficial manner, even with the most hostile of people. They also give the Jedi an excellent viewpoint to ace as mediators in all sorts of situations, be they in business, politics, or personal encounters.
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You’ve seen the movies. You’ve heard of the religious movement. Here at the Jedi Temple, we represent a real world surreligion for today’s Jedi.
What is a surreligion you ask? Well, the word itself is composed of “sur-” and “religion”. “Sur-” is a commonly used French based prefix meaning “above” or “on top of”. It is used here to denote that Jedi teachings are not in and of themselves, a religion. They are, rather, a form of practical mysticism which are meant to be applied on top of whatever your religious beliefs are.
Jediism is compatible with All faiths.
You can be a Christian, Jewish, Hindu, agnostic, Pagan, or even an atheist Jedi. It really matters not. The teachings of the Jedi can be applied to your current religious beliefs. Jediism is a set of philosophies and practices which are easily integrated into your religious beliefs and can be quite complimentary.
There is no reason to give up your beliefs in order to become a Jedi. Jediism does not restrict your prayers, practices, diet, or even prescribed clothing for your religion. There is no conflict.
While Jediism is not for everyone, it restricts who can be a Jedi by your training, your strength of character, your growth, and your goodness. It does not restrict by religion any more than by the circumstances of your birth.
If you feel like you stand out above the crowd, that you have a greater destiny in The Force, then please contact the Jedi Council for more information.
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The Jedi Council is currently debating what information should be made public here. Stay tuned.