Whether you consider yourself a teacher of the Jedi Way or especially if you are looking for a Jedi Mentor there are 10 things you should not sacrifice for training. Master or Padawan your training relationship is important and should not cost you these ten things. Now these also VERY much apply to Jedi Websites, Groups, and Training Programs. Also while I am speaking to the Student – if you Jedi Mentor feel this list applies to your student(s) time to consider a change.
Routine check-ins are a part of training. So is adhering to the rules and ideals of the Jedi Path. But you are always free to walk away, choose a different mentor, go to and participate at any Jedi Site you so choose. Possessive behavior almost always points to an extreme internal insecurity. If your Jedi Group.Website has a no training at other places policy/rule or not allowing outside views – you need to question that. It is cult-like behavior to isolate people. Controlling behavior suggests that the person does not feel comfortable with him or herself, and this definitely needs to be worked out before he or she commits to any long-term relationships (romantic, educational, or otherwise).
The Jedi Path is about change. But it is about changing into the best version of you, not changing the essence of who you are. It is about not being defined by your past, but embracing and becoming the person YOU want to be. Do not change yourself for ANYONE but yourself. As a Jedi Mentor I assume students have made a choice to live by the Jedi Way and seek the change that comes with that. But if you become uncomfortable with certain requests, or worse demands, to change your behavior – Speak Up. This is a lifestyle and path of personal wellness and betterment. If you don’t like the person you are becoming, cut ties, and reflect on what you do like about yourself and run with it. All relationships require some compromise, but these are things like using Google Hangouts instead of Skype which you prefer. The right person will like you for you and will want to cultivate the best version of you (not change who you are).
If someone does not enhance your life and add to your joy, then what purpose do they serve in your life? Again, applies to all relationships. Being a Jedi is about Finding Your Bliss. As a Jedi I am a million times happier than any point in my life. My life is far from perfect and yet I feel joy, bliss, and happiness on a daily basis. If your Jedi Mentor is not helping you reach this – time to seek out a better training environment. Now, it won’t be all sunshine, puppies, and balloons. Your Mentor will need to be tough on you sometimes – such is the teaching role. But you should be able to determine if a relationship is adding to your happiness or just making you miserable. If unsure, ask those that see you daily. Ask them if you have been smiling and laughing more or less than usual.
Above all else, you should have fun. Can you joke openly and freely with your mentor? Do you feel like a kid at times during training? A relationship always comes with disagreements from time to time, but you should never give up fun in a relationship. Life is stressful enough. Learning a new lifestyle carries its own challenges. You have to be able to have fun too.
5. Your dreams.
Seriously. Living as a Jedi is a dream in itself. So why would your Mentor being trying to dream-crush any of your other hopes? I mean, maybe if they are about world domination or something. But all relationships are about trust, communication, and support. If someone is making you feel like you should just be a grocery bagger and never dream beyond that? Our dreams define a good part of us. To give them up is to give up a part of ourselves.
6. Inner peace.
This is a core of the Jedi Path. Cultivating Inner Peace is mandatory. So if your Mentor damages your calm? Time to run away quickly. They obviously are not there yet and need to focus on their own training. So if they are pumping out negative energy time to find a new training partner. Jedi Mentor should reflect the calm within.
7. Your desire to explore.
Exploration is core to our path as well. All Jedi Students are like cookie monsters of knowledge. So yes, there will be restraints. Your mentor will look to slow that devouring of information. But never at the cost of exploration or an exploring spirit. In fact your mentor (or Jedi group) should have materials for you to explore and compare to their own view. And if you express a desire to explore outside their view, it should be encouraged (with stipulations and addendums perhaps ;))
8. Your other relationships.
Your relationships with friends and family should not have to suffer just because you are training to be a Jedi. It is possible some in your life may not like or respect your new lifestyle. You’ll need to exercise mindfulness in determining that. But No Jedi Mentor should be restricting or sabotaging any of your relationships. Training requires contact, but it should not be your entire life ot the exclusion of others. Family and Friends are core to the Jedi Ideal of Social Well-Being. A confident training partner won’t need you to ignore all else and focus only on them. They should understand that life needs attention and you’ll need time away to handle the crazy things that arise in the roller coaster of life.
9. Your spiritual/religious beliefs.
I don’t care what “ism” you follow as a Jedi – your spiritual and religious beliefs are for you. they are your’s and your’s alone. No Jedi Mentor should seek to convert you. Or tell you that you are not a Jedi because you don’t X, Y, or Z. Spiritual Well-Being is core to the Jedi Path, but it is for each Jedi to discover, explore, and determine for themselves. Your mentor will help. They will help question and offer new concepts to consider, but your choice should always be respected.
Every relationship requires a deep commitment to truly listening to the other person and understanding his or her thoughts and feelings. Without Communication you have nothing. True learning will not take place. You cannot learn form or teach those that lie to themselves. If they are unable or unwilling to truly shut up and listen to what you are saying then it is a waste of your time. Your feelings and concerns are valid and should be given full attention. Talk, Listen, Communicate. If you feel you can’t or just aren’t being heard – you guessed it – time to move on.
(I am counting this as Jedi Circle – Exercise: Day 2. Exercising my mind and understanding of Jedi ideals. plus I want it out there so I am held accountable to this as well. This article is inspired by one I read on powerofpositivity.com which was more about intimate relationships. Wanted to see if I could approach the subject as a Jedi.)