Tag Archives: Jedi Life

Jediism = Real Jedi

Watch Out

It is an interesting thing to me. I understand and advocate the need for classification and the use of proper organizational titles. I find these are useful and beneficial elements in any group. Especially one which works off a ranking system for educational purposes. It simply makes sense. You join a new Jedi Group. You’d like to know which Jedi is writing the lessons and been living it for ten years or whatever. As well as much Jedi is like you, fresh, new, and perhaps someone who can relate to your experiences a little better. So titles are given to help people navigate this at first glance. Student, Knight, Instructor, all pretty clear indicators. So I support this type of classification.

Where I find difficulty is when that begins to devolve into unnecessary titles. “I am a Jediist, not a Jedi Realist.” What? What does that mean? “It means I follow Jediism, not Jedi Realism.” What is the difference. – Now here is where many in the Jedi Community miss something important. To the rest of the world there is no difference. To the Media, News, Magazine writers, Filmmakers, your curious cousin, makes absolutely no difference. This is because it all means the same thing to them. Jediism = Real Jedi. Or at least people who think themselves real Jedi.

To be clear, people in the Jedi Community will say there is a difference. And this has been true in the past. Originally Jediism meant Jedi Religion. And Jedi Realism meant religion was left to the Jedi. But that difference has been on a losing battle from day one. Every day more and more people coming looking for “Jediism” as an all-encompassing term. Thsi is due to above. The people giving real Jedi any coverage do not adhere to the petty Glass Walls the Jedi Community create for themselves. In the end the word with the most use wins and currently that word is Jediism.

I have been against colors, isms, and other various little lines drawn in the sand since 2000. They are irrelevant. Either you are a Jedi or you are not. Jediism shares the same core ideals as Jedi Realism. These share the same core as Jedi Pragmatism. The question is always the same – are you or are you not living your life as a Jedi? If yes – doesn’t matter your ism. Now most people take this stance as me saying – “You are not allowed to have any ism. Stop calling yourself this or that.” Which is incorrect. Say you follow Jediism or Jedi Realism. Cool deal. I will shrug and view it 100% as relevant as your hair color. It is simply another feature which is a part of you. But ultimately doesn’t affect whether you actually live as a Jedi.

I have, even in the popular days of Jedi Realism, stuck to simply Jedi. It is my focus. Grey Jedi, Purple Jedi, Jediist, all unnecessary additions which simply prop people up in their own little corners declaring who is better than who. “Jedi Realism is role-players and fakes because they don’t have the courage to complete to the Jedi as a Religion.” Yes that has actually been said. “I am a Jedi Realist. Our training is just way better and doesn’t focus on religious overtones.” Said. Silly little who is better than who non-sense. Tribes fighting over a hill and failing to see the mountain. It is this segregation I have argued, fruitlessly, against for however many stupid years it has been. And it continues. To me it is simple. If you love Jediism or follow Jedi as your Religion. Cool. That is about as important as your race, gender, or sexual preferences. Other words – doesn’t matter.

Now I get it. Minority voice here. Give the people their bread. Let them hold onto their security blanket of isms. Which sure. I am all for you picking your poison. Love your Jedi Religion with a hint of catholic flavor. Temple of the Jedi Order is for you. Like your Jedi Religion heavy period? Church of Jediism it is. Jedi Religion not your thing? Institute of Jedi Realist Studies perhaps? Maybe you want some offline stuff? Near Chicago? Chicago Jedi has you covered. California Jedi might be able to offer you some face time. It is the groups that you chose to grow with that make the difference – not the ism. Not even whatever ism that specific group promotes. What matters is finding a place that you feel comfortable growing as a Jedi with. A place you feel is positive and beneficial to your growth. Don’t worry about whatever ism is attached. It doesn’t matter. In the end the important tile/word is Jedi. And all you need to worry about is finding a group that helps to obtain that goal.

 

 

Still Finding the Format

I have been messing with how to get all this social media connected. Seeing what works best. Looking to find a balance between convenience and utility. It has been an interesting learning experience. Not sure I am done yet. But I am certainly enjoying the experience and even the stumbling. Missed some posts here because I thought I had set-up a cross post. I’ll be trying a new approach. And we’ll see how that goes.

Just wanted to update really. Things have been crazy. Balance of living as a Jedi daily has been tested a bit more than usual. Again, great experience, but certainly taxing. Still had a weekend in San Francisco. There was a cool Yoda heart sculpture thing downtown. Nice little welcome. It is good to get out in the world. Be a tourist in a place you know. I very much enjoy the world and experiencing it.

If I can recommend a little challenge. Go be a tourist in the city you live.

Day 3 – Exercising Sound Judgment

I wanted to put up some exercise videos today. Not instructional or anything. Just some exercises I routine do and enjoy. Kind of touch on that whole Physical Aspect of Exercise. However I am dealing with a slight medical condition. It is an Indirect Inguinal Hernia. My doctor has me on a wait-and-see approach. Not waiting to do surgery unless it is truly necessary. And since manual labor or heavy lifting is not a part of my daily life (job/career) there is less chance of me making it worse. Of course I run Spartan Races and train physically as a Jedi. I prefer High Impact Interval Training as well. So I haven’t been the best patient at times. Which is silly because that only hurts and endangers my self. Not really a Jedi thing to do since Physical Well-Being is one of our Five Axioms (per the Jedi Circle) and that means taking care of our bodies. Resting when ill, healing when injured, and not worsening our physical state by poor work-out habits and diet. Something I have really kept to in more recent times. And I have had to adjust some of my training/work-outs accordingly.

Anyhow. Yesterday and today have been bad days. With the recent changes to Jedi Living from the original Jedi Academy Online format I have just felt full of energy. I have this sense of good things to come and want to capitalize on that. Really get and offer the most out of this energy spike. Of course if you start to push yourself to hard, your body is going to let you know. So I have had to ease up and not get the videos done that I had hoped to do – Yet. So today instead of physical exercise demonstrations I am going with sound judgment exercise.

Since the Doctor has me on this wait and see approach I have done some research into non-surgical “cures”. Nothing actually looks promising. Unlike most beliefs it isn’t about muscle per se. While good muscles can help prevent what is actually involved is Fascia. My type of hernia is very common in men due to our anatomy – I was surprised how common. Anyhow, Fascia is not like muscle or skin. It is different and thus heals and acts differently. All Hernias need surgery to be fixed. Truly healed? I haven’t really come across anything that suggests one is ever truly healed. In fact, my doctor said with age there is a higher risk of re-injury and/or a new hernia happening due to the strain on the muscles and fascia. However there is information on strengthening exercises and stretches you can do for such injuries. Which do help the fascia. Staying in shape is actually one of the requirements and doctor recommended activities – just have to do so in a sensible manner.

So it was a fight between doing what I wanted with the risk of making my condition worse or taking it easy for a bit and seeing how my body responds. My exercises aren’t that bad, except for the Pull-up Burpees I like to do (which was one of the exercises I wanted to film). They require jumping, leg lifts, and landing. Plus the normal squat, plank, push-up positions that come with the regular exercise. Now I normally don’t have an issue. Plus I take measures to help, such as a truss to help keep things in place. But as I said, these past two days have not been kind. So instead I have decided the more Jedi-like thing to do would be to focus on healing. As I really don’t want surgery and that will become mandatory should things get worse.

So today is exercising sound judgment. Doing some easy non-weight related exercises in the house. And monitoring myself to ensure I haven’t pushed beyond acceptable perimeters. I also won’t be putting this up on the Tumblr or FB page. Just a little more personal and I am not sure it would be of interest to those mediums. So if anyone actually reads just the blog – congrats. Your weird tenacity has made off or something. Now to exercise some meditation. 😉

10 Things You Should Not Sacrifice for Jedi Training

image

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.

1. Freedom.
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).

2. Yourself.
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).

3. Happiness.
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.

4. Fun.
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.

10. Communication.
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.)

10 Things You Should Not Sacrifice for Jedi Training

Ancient_Monument_TCG_by_Cynthie_Sheppard

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.

1. Freedom.
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).

2. Yourself.
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).

3. Happiness.
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.

4. Fun.
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.

10. Communication.
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.)

Jedi Circle – Exercise Day 1

Lightsaber_Training_by_Jedi_Art_Trick

This is the first topic in the Jedi Circle and thus the first one I’ll be tackling. Exercise. It is one of the Five Habits and carries a very broad use. Exercise can be applied to all areas of our well-being. Physical, Emotional, Intellectual, Spiritual, all can be exercised in one form or another. But before I get into the topic specifically I wanted to talk briefly on the Five Habits or more to why they are called such. When I was developing the Jedi Circle for a long time I called these the Five Practices. Which is true enough, but I felt it was missing a key point of these practices being daily. During a conversation I was asked by a fellow Jedi how I kept up my practices on a daily basis and I mentioned that they were basically habit. It is just what I did when I woke up. Thus the title was renamed to enforce this concept. Exercise, Meditation, Acceptance, Acuity, Assiduity. These are daily things Jedi work on which formulate into habit.

Now as I was developing the Jedi Circle “Exercise” was actually listed as Physical Fitness for years. It is a core aspect of being a Jedi. Physical well-being. That is a very broad field and most think Body Builder, then they think Unnecessary and then they move on to something less taxing. This working out is only one aspect of physical well-being and that doesn’t mean power lifting. So knowing I need to really approach the topic with more depth I gave physical wellness its own category and changed Physical Fitness into Exercise.

Lots of things fall under the umbrella of exercise. Play Table Tennis for hour – exercise. Some may scoff, but we all have our own level of fitness. I spend about an hour and half every morning on physical exercise. I also spend about twenty minutes in my day on awareness exercises. I look to exercise my mental faculties as well, which takes a vary of forms. Logic puzzles, reading, learning something new. I seek to exercise my emotional well-being. Exercise covers such a broad spectrum of the self that it really serves as a great habit for the Jedi.

Throughout the week I’ll be looking to talk a little on various exercises I use in my day. And how you can use them as well. Time management is a factor and thus a lot of my exercises are two birds with one stone. With a little common sense you can adjust these to fit your life as well, if you are so inclined. But more than talk I will look to get a video or two to demonstrate these exercises. That is all I have for today. It is a busy day. Exercising my priorities. ;)

Jedi Circle – Exercise Day 1 was originally published on 365 Jedi

Jedi Circle – Exercise Day 1

Lightsaber_Training_by_Jedi_Art_Trick

This is the first topic in the Jedi Circle and thus the first one I’ll be tackling. Exercise. It is one of the Five Habits and carries a very broad use. Exercise can be applied to all areas of our well-being. Physical, Emotional, Intellectual, Spiritual, all can be exercised in one form or another. But before I get into the topic specifically I wanted to talk briefly on the Five Habits or more to why they are called such. When I was developing the Jedi Circle for a long time I called these the Five Practices. Which is true enough, but I felt it was missing a key point of these practices being daily. During a conversation I was asked by a fellow Jedi how I kept up my practices on a daily basis and I mentioned that they were basically habit. It is just what I did when I woke up. Thus the title was renamed to enforce this concept. Exercise, Meditation, Acceptance, Acuity, Assiduity. These are daily things Jedi work on which formulate into habit.

Now as I was developing the Jedi Circle “Exercise” was actually listed as Physical Fitness for years. It is a core aspect of being a Jedi. Physical well-being. That is a very broad field and most think Body Builder, then they think Unnecessary and then they move on to something less taxing. This working out is only one aspect of physical well-being and that doesn’t mean power lifting. So knowing I need to really approach the topic with more depth I gave physical wellness its own category and changed Physical Fitness into Exercise.

Lots of things fall under the umbrella of exercise. Play Table Tennis for hour – exercise. Some may scoff, but we all have our own level of fitness. I spend about an hour and half every morning on physical exercise. I also spend about twenty minutes in my day on awareness exercises. I look to exercise my mental faculties as well, which takes a vary of forms. Logic puzzles, reading, learning something new. I seek to exercise my emotional well-being. Exercise covers such a broad spectrum of the self that it really serves as a great habit for the Jedi.

Throughout the week I’ll be looking to talk a little on various exercises I use in my day. And how you can use them as well. Time management is a factor and thus a lot of my exercises are two birds with one stone. With a little common sense you can adjust these to fit your life as well, if you are so inclined. But more than talk I will look to get a video or two to demonstrate these exercises. That is all I have for today. It is a busy day. Exercising my priorities. 😉

You are not the First…

1312934066-obiwan_kanobe._sx450_sy341_

During an interview for the Jedi documentary (American Jedi) it was said that I was one of the founders of the Online Jedi Community. I was horrified. It simply was not correct. In the early years as the Jedi community was beginning to develop I was there. Quietly watching, reading, and looking to learn what I could. I didn’t really participate. I just mostly read and applied. It was trial and error even for those who were creating websites and gaining a following.  But I was just a kid who wanted to be a Jedi Knight. A shy kid that would sooner be a doormat than risk confrontation. So I corrected the misunderstanding. There, yes, founder? Far from it. I was an observer, a student at best. I knew what I wanted to be and that I was far from it. I would need help and guidance. But I was a bit too timid to ask anyone vocal in the community at the time.

It wasn’t until 1999 that I really became active in the Community. Being a voice in debates and talking up applicable Jedi Ideals. In mid-2000 I created my own website after I was given the Jedi Master title from the Force Academy. I used homestead and ez-board as my site-builder and message boards. It was a fun little project and I had a nice little following. About five for so people that dropped in regularly. Of course the major boards in 2000 were seeing around 200 members a day, but the small community worked for me. Again, I was never looking for the spotlight or to be a leader. I just wanted a nice Jedi Community I could grow with. Eventually I simply joined as many Jedi websites as I could. Go all in for training. I also enrolled in college to help my Jedi studies. I majored in Philosophy, minored in Sociology, and took a side of Eastern Religion classes to round it out. Eventually I closed my forums and change the purpose of my site. No longer a place to share ideas, but simply to be a signpost for the growing Community. I had links and logos of the various sites you could join and train at.

Over the course of my time I received various titles. But I continued to submit to various training programs as I found them. I always knew there was someone else out there who had been doing it longer than myself. Even people who some considered my peers were actually people I looked up to because I knew they had more experience. We may have started near the same time, but they were active, engaging, and that gave them experience in the online community. Even recently someone commented that they had been following the Jedi ideals over 30 years, closer to forty. I was inches away from sending them a private message inquiring about training under them.

The reason I am writing this is because it is important to remember that there are many people out there who have been following the dream for years. Just because you read a book on Yoga doesn’t mean you open your own Yoga school. And you especially don’t do it right next to a Yoga school that has been running for over a decade. Same applies to the Jedi Path. If you are new and seeking guidance in how to live as a Jedi then feel free to partake in the many groups that exist. But please, pretty please, do your homework. Ask questions. Make sure there is some linage there, some experience. Because this recurring trend of so-called Jedi opening Schools for Jedi when they haven’t even been on the path for a month is wrong, irresponsible, and dangerous.

The Jedi Path is a lifestyle. It is physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual. It is something that affects how we live. How we approach life and those around us. When I first set out to learn the ways of the Jedi, as it were, I was very open to the process. Unfortunately that is a dangerous thing when you are talking online. Offline groups you have a bit more to judge character and qualifications. So you need to be very careful when picking a Jedi group to grow with. Ask questions. Seek qualifications. Make sure you aren’t their trial run. To be a mentor is a big responsibility. It is tough. It takes time and effort and is a huge commitment. This is especially true for Jedi Mentors. So don’t settle and don’t risk your own growth on some group with no qualifications. Demand the best. You deserve it.

You are not the First… was originally published on 365 Jedi

You are not the First…

1312934066-obiwan_kanobe._sx450_sy341_

During an interview for the Jedi documentary (American Jedi) it was said that I was one of the founders of the Online Jedi Community. I was horrified. It simply was not correct. In the early years as the Jedi community was beginning to develop I was there. Quietly watching, reading, and looking to learn what I could. I didn’t really participate. I just mostly read and applied. It was trial and error even for those who were creating websites and gaining a following.  But I was just a kid who wanted to be a Jedi Knight. A shy kid that would sooner be a doormat than risk confrontation. So I corrected the misunderstanding. There, yes, founder? Far from it. I was an observer, a student at best. I knew what I wanted to be and that I was far from it. I would need help and guidance. But I was a bit too timid to ask anyone vocal in the community at the time.

It wasn’t until 1999 that I really became active in the Community. Being a voice in debates and talking up applicable Jedi Ideals. In mid-2000 I created my own website after I was given the Jedi Master title from the Force Academy. I used homestead and ez-board as my site-builder and message boards. It was a fun little project and I had a nice little following. About five for so people that dropped in regularly. Of course the major boards in 2000 were seeing around 200 members a day, but the small community worked for me. Again, I was never looking for the spotlight or to be a leader. I just wanted a nice Jedi Community I could grow with. Eventually I simply joined as many Jedi websites as I could. Go all in for training. I also enrolled in college to help my Jedi studies. I majored in Philosophy, minored in Sociology, and took a side of Eastern Religion classes to round it out. Eventually I closed my forums and change the purpose of my site. No longer a place to share ideas, but simply to be a signpost for the growing Community. I had links and logos of the various sites you could join and train at.

Over the course of my time I received various titles. But I continued to submit to various training programs as I found them. I always knew there was someone else out there who had been doing it longer than myself. Even people who some considered my peers were actually people I looked up to because I knew they had more experience. We may have started near the same time, but they were active, engaging, and that gave them experience in the online community. Even recently someone commented that they had been following the Jedi ideals over 30 years, closer to forty. I was inches away from sending them a private message inquiring about training under them.

The reason I am writing this is because it is important to remember that there are many people out there who have been following the dream for years. Just because you read a book on Yoga doesn’t mean you open your own Yoga school. And you especially don’t do it right next to a Yoga school that has been running for over a decade. Same applies to the Jedi Path. If you are new and seeking guidance in how to live as a Jedi then feel free to partake in the many groups that exist. But please, pretty please, do your homework. Ask questions. Make sure there is some linage there, some experience. Because this recurring trend of so-called Jedi opening Schools for Jedi when they haven’t even been on the path for a month is wrong, irresponsible, and dangerous.

The Jedi Path is a lifestyle. It is physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual. It is something that affects how we live. How we approach life and those around us. When I first set out to learn the ways of the Jedi, as it were, I was very open to the process. Unfortunately that is a dangerous thing when you are talking online. Offline groups you have a bit more to judge character and qualifications. So you need to be very careful when picking a Jedi group to grow with. Ask questions. Seek qualifications. Make sure you aren’t their trial run. To be a mentor is a big responsibility. It is tough. It takes time and effort and is a huge commitment. This is especially true for Jedi Mentors. So don’t settle and don’t risk your own growth on some group with no qualifications. Demand the best. You deserve it.

I just wanna be a Jedi

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Recently I have changed a lot of things in my life. Certain projects I am involved with have really given me a grasp of what I want to strive for. It wasn’t until these projects forced me to be open and honest with basically strangers that I realized how much I had been hiding my aspirations. Now I am not going to pretend they aren’t silly. Say what you will about the viability of the Jedi Path, it still sounds strange to say I want to be a Jedi and instructor of the Jedi Way. We are talking about terminology that originates with a fictional order created for an entertainment franchise. Of course that hasn’t stopped me for the past two decades, but recent changes and really allowed me to talk about the Jedi Path openly and freely. With family members, with friends, and with other people who simply enjoy the fandom that Star Wars has created. And being able to embrace my path has really given me fresh perspectives from those close to me. This has really helped my motivation in being an example. I still hold that saying, I want to be a Jedi or even I am a Jedi is still silly sounding. But I fully believe that one day it will not be and even if it does, that it will mean something more than Star Wars.

There are plenty of personal wellness paths out there. The biggest trends I see nowadays are not even related to any sort of spiritual label, but simply in living a healthy and productive life. Spiritually tends to be a by-product of these paths. Something magical and greater than the self is discovered in the pursuit of personal well-being. And the expression of that is found in seeking Happiness and wanting to share that happiness. Finding and embracing joy in all the aspects of life. Those that have these general interests of well-being and use social media have seen this the most. The amount of mental, emotional, and even spiritual messages that get mixed in with fitblrs (for example) shows the interconnected aspects of these topics. Lifting and muscle building may be the goal, but soon it is realized that it takes a full commitment of the body, mind, and soul. It becomes a lifestyle and affects every aspects of life. It requires one to change how they approach life.

This is no different for the Jedi Path. It is a lifestyle. It takes over and affects all aspects of our lives. The Jedi Circle (one of those recent changes I was mentioning) lists the Five Axioms as Physical, Emotional, Intellectual, Social, and Spiritual Well-Being. This is because Jedi acknowledge that these things are all connected. To neglect one is to damage the other(s). You have to get your mind right to succeed. This is about knowledge, this is about emotional content, this is about goal-setting, and it is about execution of your plan. In pursuit of becoming a Jedi you realize you cannot give half effort. If you do give half effort you end up realizing that you are missing out on something important and that you have to make a choice. This is either when people move on or come up with some absurd excuse like Grey Jedi. Few truly embrace the Path and simply give it their all. And that is because it does require openness beyond the net. Like any other path you cannot truly grow within it by practicing in the dark. You have to be able to dedicate the time to it.

The point of this post funny enough and the reason for the picture was because of this change in my life I have been forced to relearn the Jedi Path. I changed the Jedi Circle which means I have to commit a whole new format to memory. More than that I have to workout precisely how to manifest the concepts in my daily life.  Now I’d rather just be a wise old Jedi who has over two decades of study and experience under his belt. The truth is however closer to that I have 20 years of basically what not to do under my belt. The process, knowledge, and materials I have available now are just way more useful and beneficial than when I started back in the mid-90’s. The lifestyle has been beneficial to me, but I know it can be even more so. Which requires me to be the student once more.

So. Starting next week I’ll be examining the Jedi Circle piece by piece. Seeking to really delve into each topic. Keep the basics close to heart. I think I’ll seek to devote a week per subject. Which will drag out this re-training session to 25 weeks. Plus I’ll need to give time afterward to the process of bring them all together. A new journey begins. *sigh* Have I mentioned how I just want to be a Jedi and not do all this study and application stuff?

I just wanna be a Jedi was originally published on 365 Jedi