Star Wars: Shards
“For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Before the dark times. Before the Empire.”
―Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi
Look, I know you have probably seen reruns of that Jedi Quest holovid show. I’ve joined some off-duty Beskar Aran with a big mess of popcorn and sauced-up mystery protein, and binged a run or three of episodes. It’s good storytelling (sometimes). It’s a lot of fun.
And, I hope you’ll forgive the obvious: it’s a lot of hooey.
I’m not going to talk about our history or origins because I don’t think it really matters to your situation right now. If you want to know, if you’re curious or you’re frustrated, there are plenty of records still around despite Darth Sidious’ propaganda and tantrums.
I’ll even agree right now: some of that history shows us being buttheads. The Mandalorians word for “Jedi” is a profanity. They aren’t the only ones with a record of us being in the wrong, either.
But the thing is — we’re mortal. We’re fallible. We screw up. Sometimes we screw up large! Sometimes we take a lot longer than we ought to own that, and take steps to improve.
Eventually, we always circle around to a better course of behavior, a healthier pattern of thought.
And the reason for that is simple: we’re all connected. To the Force, sure; to each other, often enough; to everyone. To all of life, past this galaxy, past this moment, out to the edges of the universe.
We believe that there is one particular form of energy that binds all things in the universe together, from the tiniest bacteria to the biggest Krayt dragon, from a newborn Mrlssi to the oldest red giant star. Everyone knows that energy and matter are different forms of the same thing; we believe that everyone is a portion of that energy made manifest, the cosmos itself subdividing itself so it can have adventures. Experiences. Growth and discovery and joy.
(We don’t believe in that “midichlorian” stuff. That’s Jedi Quest again!)
Actually it’s a bit of a misphrasing to say we believe this stuff. We know!
Have you ever been a part of a dance, or a gaming team, or a band, or a race, or a song, or a problem-solving team, where everything seems to suddenly line up and work just right, when you feel like some part of your being spread out of your skin to brush against the outspread souls of all the people working with you on the same effort? Where you really feel, even if it’s just for a split instant in the middle of an adrenaline spike, that you-together have become more than just the sum of all the individual "you"s?
We Jedi have learned how to do that on purpose, without the adrenaline spike, without having to line up all the circumstances just so. We can reach out and feel the life all around us, in a tree, in a lake, in a crowd, in a mynock, in an aiwha. Sometimes that is not a keen sensation, witness the ysalamiri when they get scared.
But sometimes it is the most classic definition of “awesome”.
I know I was certainly in awe when I first felt the Force as it existed in a rancor.
I cannot begin to describe to you the joy I know in my life because I am part of the Cosmos, part of Life. I do not even begin to have the right words.
But I can share it with you. I think, even if you are not Force sensitive, that it’s the kind of feeling you can learn to feel within yourself.
You are a part of the Cosmos, after all.
You merely got distracted away from that knowledge by all the experiencing you were doing.
Emotion, yet peace.
Ignorance, yet knowledge.
Passion, yet serenity.
Chaos, yet harmony.
Death, yet the Force.