Category Archives: Introduction

Seeking Peace through the Jedi Lifestyle

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Many seek to find a more peaceful life. One not defined by the hustle of life. The Jedi Way often talks of peace and peace of mind. But what ideas can we applied directly to our lives from our fictional counterparts to make that a reality?
“Conquer Materialism” – The desire for more is not a bad thing, but certainly moderation is key. The newest this or the slimmer that – are they needs? All material things are impermanent and will require replacing eventually. Enjoy what you have now. It may not be the best or where you want to be, but that doesn’t take away from the great things you do have in your life. The necessities of life, Water, Food, Shelter. So yes, enjoy that phone or computer (however you are reading this), but don’t get lost to the chase for more, more, more , more. Embrace your now and be content with what you do have.

“You were right about one thing master. The negotiations were short.” – If you cannot laugh at the situation or yourself you may be taking things a bit too seriously. This isn’t to say that a situation isn’t serious, but a dose of humor goes a long way to ensuring we don’t get caught in a stressful way of thinking. Laugh, Smile, seek the messed up humorous side of it all. Life can be pretty ridiculous, best to laugh with it.

“Jedi are encouraged to love.” – Love freely and openly. No that does not mean try to sleep with senators from Naboo. It means that this world has many great things to truly appreciate, enjoy, and love. Pets, family, friends, significant other, love deeply, richly, and openly. Again, nothing lasts forever. So enjoy these memories and relationships and connections while they are here. Do not worry about some ‘what if’ – instead embrace the love now with all your heart. Especially for pets. Give them pets and treats for me.

“Concentrate. Concentrate.” – Meditation. Focus. A daily routine and practice of meditation makes a impact. There is no – doing it wrong. Do a little research, find a meditation technique that you find enjoyable. Set it into your daily routine. We have a couple videos that may help. Whatever works for you. Do it and reap the benefits of cultivating a center of calm. It is well worth the investment.

“Keep your concentration here and now where it belongs.” – The major theme here. Yes, future plans and goals are important. Yes, the past provides valuable lessons to learn from. But happiness, peace, these are found in this very moment. It is a choice. Turn off the tv, go admire the beauty and wonder of nature (even a local park in the city provides this). Just 10 minutes of not drowning yourself in media and noise – instead spend it outside just taking in the world around. Life. Concentrate on the moment – this time. This is for you. You have this moment – what will you do with it? Hopefully close this article and go enjoy what the moment has to offer. Even if that is merely looking out the window of your office building at the sky above.

Are Jedi Real?

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A fair and valid question, despite the obvious – NO! Star Wars is a movie! – answer that may screamed at you or from you. First, yes real Jedi do exist. Now before people get all listing reasons as to why not, there are two main things to consider. The first is simply that mythology and story-telling (a.k.a. Fiction) has been a way to explore the human experience. It is a way to dive into reality by dissociating a bit. Allowing people to touch on some of the more bigger topics in a way that feels safer and is a bit more engaging. Star Wars and thus the Jedi are no different in this. They are reflections of our reality. They look at the human experience and allow us to explore several concepts of morality, spirituality, and so forth. To say Jedi are purely fictional is to deny the very real-world inspirations that aided in their creation (e.g. Samurai, Knights Templars, Stoicism, etc.). Concepts such as Peace, Knowledge, Serenity, and Harmony are very grounded and accepted as real. Even the Force has been used by a lot of major religions to introduce people to spiritual concepts.

The second thing to remember is that fictional inspiration does not automatically negate validity. You can be inspired by a story. This is the whole principle behind Aesop Fable’s and Jesus’ parables. I mean, if someone changes their life for the better because of A Christmas Carol would you say their new life isn’t real? Sure, I get it. Calling yourself a Jedi is a bit further than just living a life inspired by the films (or tv shows, books, comics, games, etc.). Yet really that is just labeling the lifestyle. When you live your life by clear guidelines and a Code having a label helps people make sense of why you do what you do. Why are you bending yourself into a pretzel? Yoga. Why are you kneeling in front of a half-naked man nailed to a cross? Catholic Praying. Why are you sitting in front of a wall doing nothing for an hour? Zazen. Why do you live the way you do? I’m a Jedi. We are paying homage to the inspiration and keeping it very close to the heart so that we do not lose our way. As the movies shows us, falling to the dark side can be pretty easy. Which again, fiction as a reflection. How many times in life do we see people lose their way and wander a dark path? We realize, as George Lucas once wrote, our focus determines our reality, so we have chosen to focus on the light also labeled Jedi.

So are Jedi real? Yes. Since the mid-1990s the online Jedi Community has worked to make it a reality. Something more than just fans reciting the Jedi Code and quoting Yoda. Building an actual lifestyle that is positive and beneficial and true to the inspiration. Here is a quick breakdown and see if anything seems fake or fictional to you.
Main Practices: Meditation, Physical Fitness, Diplomacy, Awareness, and Self-Discipline.
Main Tenets: Peace, Knowledge, Serenity, Harmony, the Force.
Main Traits: Patient, Objective, Reliable, Grateful, Helpful.
So what sticks out as fake or unrealistic? Maybe the Force? But what is the Force? What is meant by it? Even within the Star Wars universe, what is the Force and is that idea so beyond our own universe? Midiclorians? Mitochondria could be a real-world view. Remember that the Force is never truly explained within Star Wars (I have a whole midiclorians don’t ruin the Force rant – I’ll spare you for now). The point being that even using the terminology “the Force” doesn’t diminish the idea being conveyed and explored. We can see  elements of a very positive lifestyle being expressed within Jedi ideology. Really touching on five key areas of personal well-being (physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and social).

The Jedi Path, world-betterment through self-betterment wrapped up in Star Wars terminology/inspiration. So yep, we earth-bound movie inspired Jedi are very much real with very real practices and ideology. And if that speaks to you, I hope you’ll join us on this amazing journey. May the Force be with you.

Welcome to the Jedi Community

I have been in the Jedi Community actively since 1999. Before that I haunted the websites and chats for four years (1995); reading, contemplating, testing (practicing exercises and ideas via trial and error). Because of this I find it hard to fully grasp what it must be like to find the Jedi Community. The questions, concerns, perhaps excitement and enthusiasm. Regardless I’d like to offer some thoughts and hopefully clear a few things up as you begin your exploration into this path/philosophy. Some of the things we will look at is the Jedi as a religion, the complexity of the online community, and what we here at the Jedi Academy Online focus on for the Jedi Path. I’ll seek to keep this short as possible.

First, this is a lifestyle path, not a religion. George Lucas stated in 1999 that he found Star Wars as great way to explore many of the concepts of religion via a new means. That he wanted to inspire the young and old to ask the big questions and take a deep look at the religious concepts in our world. Basically to explore and better our spirituality. “I didn’t want to invent a religion. I wanted to try to, explain in a different way the religions that have already existed.” – George Lucas

Just to be clear, this doesn’t mean one can’t use it/label it as their personal religion (often called Jediism). It simply means Jedi is not a religion as a whole. Jedi is an open and diverse group of individuals which share many religious beliefs. Some Jedi are Christians, some are atheists, some are agnostic, some are Buddhist, some call themselves Jediists. We have a variety of cultures and religious beliefs which are accepted and embraced here at the Jedi Academy Online. There is no need to change your religion and you are certainly not asked to make Jedi your religion. While we will be exploring concepts of spirituality, looking at different beliefs and religions out there, this is done to better help us understand our personal beliefs and strengthen our spiritual ideals.

When I first started in the Jedi Community it seemed rather intimidating. Seemed everyone knew everyone and I was on the outside with no way in. Times have changed, conversing on the internet is much more the norm, so this may not be the case for most people. However some places (websites) in the Jedi Community are much more active and confrontational than others. Here at the Jedi Academy Online we have a little Welcome Area, we have a small community, and a rather mellow atmosphere. Yet places like the Force Academy have a huge message board, a lot of information to explore at once, different aspects, and generally a very active forum. Different Websites/Groups/Communities take different approaches as well.

One website may not work for you as well as another. You may find the interaction between aspects a highly desirable and useful element, having hot debates as a required element to progression. Force Academy would be more your speed. Yet you may want a specific focus on Jedi as religion, with rites, rituals, and ceremonies so places like Church of Jediism may be more your flavor. Real Jedi Enclave focuses on certification and community, offering core practical guidance with a heavy focus on interaction between members. And of course you may find that mixing and being a part of more than one place is something you enjoy the most. If you have concerns on what place might be right for you feel free to contact any of the Administrators here at the JAO and we can explore that with you giving you in-depth knowledge on places based upon experience.

The last thing I’ll touch on is what the Jedi Academy Online focuses on. Jedi Philosophy for Everyday Life. Here we learn what it means to be a Real Life Jedi Knight. We learn this isn’t about lightsabers, this isn’t about Force Powers, instead it is a focus on bettering ourselves so we may better the world around us. Real Jedi Training consists of Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual Well-Being. It means improving ourselves through the study, practice, and living of Jedi Ideals and Philosophy. We take the inspiration George Lucas created and use it as he said, a stone to explore the deeper layers of ourselves and the world around us. We use it to grow as individuals who are in a position to help others. We use it to become Real World Jedi – living by the philosophy is a practical and applicable manner to our everyday lives.

Seeking Real Jedi Training

((Repost from old Jedi Academy Online Website. Will see more of these as I save and transfer information over to the new site.))

When I first poked around the Jedi Community in 1995 I was hoping to find a Jedi Master. In 1997 and especially in 1999 I figured twenty years was surely long enough from someone to have lived as a Jedi and be able to pass it on to me. It may go without saying, but I was extremely disappointed. Most were kids like myself. Some placing themselves in Master positions because there was no one to say otherwise. Those originally inspired by Star Wars seemed to have gone off to other paths and were too busy endorsing those. Be Taoist, Buddhist, Wiccan, join the Freemasons, for people like myself no Jedi existed. I did my duties, my due diligence. I studied the other philosophies and religions. I looked into becoming a Stoic. I was given the chance to join a Buddhist Temple. Comparative Studies was not something I shied away from. In the end I simply wanted to be a Jedi and no other path fulfilled that desire.

Which is why I have built this place. Real Jedi Training. Not the Tao te Ching with Star Wars terminology (no matter how much I may enjoy the Tao of Yoda). What we are looking at here is the experience of myself and several others who have endeavored to live our lives as Jedi. Every day we wake up and approach the world as Jedi Knights. Using our inspiration to help us navigate the world and seek betterment, both within ourselves and outwardly. It has not been without its obstacles and hiccups, but that is the joys of a young path. We have the foundations, not the masterworks. You get the foundational teachings. Solid ground for you to build from. What we offer here is nearly twenty years of experience with all that other junk to help support us. What junk you might ask? Philosophy major, certified meditation instructor, personal trainer, reiki certification, and so on. All irrelevant when it comes to the Jedi, but people like their established certifications. Personally I like to highlight 17 years survived in the Jedi Community. Leadership roles, Academic roles, online and offline in both positions. Certified with various organizations within the Jedi Community. But if you are concerned about specifics feel free to ask directly.

Material is the cornerstone of any organization. What do we offer? What do we teach? What is our teaching style? That is what will determine its true worth and value. Our Tier One Program is open for all. The curious, the skeptical, the earnest, anyone and everyone. Take a look at what we present and decide for yourself if you find it of any value. Oh. Where might you find it? Here.

Our focus isn’t some delusional approach. Star Wars is fictional. That is not a question. We understand where George Lucas drew his inspiration. We have studied that. But the Jedi has tied together a lot of lingering concepts and approaches uniquely as its own path. Like many paths it is similar. There are many similarities, just as there are differences. Buddhism and Taoism are two different paths, similar, but different. Islam and Christianity share similarities and differences. We have taken this path seriously and lived by it for the better part of our lives. It has made a positive difference in our lives. And we are simply offering that experience so others may learn from our pitfalls and successes.

So if you are seeking Jedi Training – just join our forums and jump in. There is no special code or special oath required. You want to be a Jedi? Then get to it. No better time to start then now.

Article: Welcome to the Jedi Community

I have been in the Jedi Community actively since 1999. Before that I haunted the websites and chats for three years (1996); reading, contemplating, testing (practicing exercises and ideas via trial and error). Because of this I find it hard to fully grasp what it must be like to find the Jedi Community. The questions, concerns, perhaps excitement and enthusiasm. Regardless I’d like to offer some thoughts and hopefully clear a few things up as you begin your exploration into this path/philosophy. Some of the things we will look at is the Jedi as a religion, the complexity of the online community, and what we here at the Jedi Academy Online focus on for the Jedi Path. I’ll seek to keep this short as possible.

First, this is a lifestyle path, not a religion. George Lucas stated in 1999 that he found Star Wars as great way to explore many of the concepts of religion via a new means. That he wanted to inspire the young and old to ask the big questions and take a deep look at the religious concepts in our world. Basically to explore and better our spirituality. “I didn’t want to invent a religion. I wanted to try to, explain in a different way the religions that have already existed.” – George Lucas

Just to be clear, this doesn’t mean one can’t use it/label it as their personal religion (often called Jediism). It simply means Jedi is not a religion as a whole. Jedi is an open and diverse group of individuals which share many religious beliefs. Some Jedi are Christians, some are atheists, some are agnostic, some are Buddhist, some call themselves Jediists. We have a variety of cultures and religious beliefs which are accepted and embraced here at the Jedi Academy Online. There is no need to change your religion and you are certainly not asked to make Jedi your religion. While we will be exploring concepts of spirituality, looking at different beliefs and religions out there, this is done to better help us understand our personal beliefs and strengthen our spiritual ideals.

When I first started in the Jedi Community it seemed rather intimidating. Seemed everyone knew everyone and I was on the outside with no way in. Times have changed, conversing on the internet is much more the norm, so this may not be the case for most people. However some places (websites) in the Jedi Community are much more active and confrontational than others. Here at the Jedi Academy Online we have a little Welcome Area, we have a small community, and a rather mellow atmosphere. Yet places like the Force Academy have a huge message board, a lot of information to explore at once, different aspects, and generally a very active forum. Different Websites/Groups/Communities take different approaches as well.

One website may not work for you as well as another. You may find the interaction between aspects a highly desirable and useful element, having hot debates as a required element to progression. Force Academy would be more your speed. Yet you may want a specific focus on Jedi as religion, with rites, rituals, and ceremonies so places like Church of Jediism may be more your flavor. Real Jedi Enclave focuses on certification and community, offering core practical guidance with a heavy focus on interaction between members. And of course you may find that mixing and being a part of more than one place is something you enjoy the most. If you have concerns on what place might be right for you feel free to contact any of the Administrators here at the JAO and we can explore that with you giving you in-depth knowledge on places based upon experience.

The last thing I’ll touch on is what the Jedi Academy Online focuses on. Jedi Philosophy for Everyday Life. Here we learn what it means to be a Real Life Jedi Knight. We learn this isn’t about lightsabers, this isn’t about Force Powers, instead it is a focus on bettering ourselves so we may better the world around us. Real Jedi Training consists of Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual Well-Being. It means improving ourselves through the study, practice, and living of Jedi Ideals and Philosophy. We take the inspiration George Lucas created and use it as he said, a stone to explore the deeper layers of ourselves and the world around us. We use it to grow as individuals who are in a position to help others. We use it to become Real World Jedi – living by the philosophy is a practical and applicable manner to our everyday lives.

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An Introduction:

The Jedi Academy Online was set-up for the purpose of educating people about the Jedi Path (Jedi Philosophy, Jedi Lifestyle, etc.). It was meant to serve as a place for those interested in learning more about the Jedi (or perhaps live as a Jedi themselves) to explore what the Jedi Path was all about. Over the first successful couple of years the direction and focus changed a bit to integrate and be a productive and leading organization in the overall Jedi Community as well as an offline organization.

With this thought in mind the name was changed to the Jedi Foundation and new training programs were put into place. The Jedi Foundation was able to continue the original goals and ideals of the Jedi Academy Online and is still in the habit of continually updating, revising, and progressing the Jedi training program. However, as often happens with internet communities (and sub-cultures) reality soon set in and disappointment followed.

The fact is the internet is still a place of escape for many. A place to vent what they would not say or do in-person. A place to relish in non-accountability and make empty promises or even more childish still empty threats. As such many places and many people online carry the name Jedi, but they are no more real than their fictional inspiration.

The Jedi Academy Online – the Jedi Foundation – 365 Jedi – these groups, ideals, the people involved seek to point out the core reality in the Jedi Path. The simple fact the the philosophy, the ideology is something one can live by in day-to-day life with beneficial results. Being a Jedi is and can be a reality. It is about personal exploration and growth. It is as much about helping others as it is about improving the self. It is about exploring real concepts such as physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being.

Real Philosophy, Real Practices, for Real Life. The Jedi Path was born from fiction, was inspired by it, but is very much grounded in the reality of better living everyday. To explore this, to show this, to validate this claim, we will be spending the next 365 days being Jedi. Two sites will be sharing this information at the same time – the Jedi Academy Online and the Jedi Foundation. You can follow along at either one. I hope you will join us.

Tomorrow begins the first of the 365 Days of Jedi. So feel free to bookmark us (jedifoundation.com/news/ or jediacademyonline.com). Be well.