"Balance to the Force" theory/symbolism?

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by DarthyMarkyMark, Aug 20, 2004.

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  1. DarthyMarkyMark Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2003
    star 4
    I'm sorry if a thread like this has ben started before - I know there are bound to have been lots of "balance to the Force" threads in the past - but I was thinking about this last night, and I think there are some interesting character roles in the whole idea of "bringing the Force back into balance".


    First of all, I think that balance is more than just Good and Evil, Light and Dark being in balance - I think a lot of it is about the balance between the Living Force - the here and the now, the things that concern us at the moment, our relationships to other beings; and the Unifying Force - the greater good, the universe as a whole, the consequences of our actions, what may happen in the future.

    At the start of TPM, we are given a perfect example of how the Force should be balanced, in the partnership of Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan. Qui-Gon focuses greatly on the Living Force, but this can sometimes leave him short-sighted to the future; Obi-Wan focuses greatly on the Unifying Force and the universe as a whole, but because of this sometimes disregards other beings, and what he's doing at the moment. But together, they make the perfect team, and are perfectly in balance.

    However, as the movie progresses, we see that as a whole, the Jedi Order as a whole has lost this balance - the Order is too focused on the Unifying Force, always looking into the future and worrying about it, without truly focusing on the moment. That is how they fail to see the rise of the Sith - they're always looking to the greater Force, and miss the great danger that is right there with them on Coruscant, even in the same room with them on occasion in AotC. The Jedi have become arrogant and complacent. Qui-Gon goes against this code by focusing on the Living Force.

    However, when Qui-Gon dies, we have no focus for the Living Force in the movies any more, and things become unbalanced - that mantle of the Living Force is sort of taken up by Anakin in AotC. Anakin is perhaps even more strongly focused on the Living Force than even Qui-Gon was - he constantly disobeys Obi-Wans code, and always acts in the moment, makes his decisions without thinking of consequences - jumping from his airspeeder, going to save his mother, confessing his love for Padme, slaughtering the Tuskens, etc. Even when he decides not to do this, when decides not to go to save Obi-Wan because he worries about the consequences, he is pursuaded otherwise - importantly, it is Padme that pursuades him. The problem is, just as the Order are far too focused on the Unifying Force, Anakin is far too focused on the Living Force - he lets his attachments rule him, specifically his attachments to Shmi and to Padme. Unlike the perfectly balanced Qui-Gon/Obi-Wan partnership, Anakin and Obi-Wan's is strained and unbalanced. By the end of AotC, and Anakin's wedding to Padme, as the Jedi (Obi-Wan, Mace and Yoda) stand around confused about whether Sidious exists or not, the Force is well and truly out of balance. The Jedi have lost their way and their use of the Force is diminished, and Anakin, the Chosen One, has almost completely turned his back on the Force and the Jedi by marrying Padme. This ultimately leads to the almost complete destruction of the Jedi Order and the Unifying Force, apart from Obi-Wan and Yoda, and the Living Force, as Anakin turns to the Dark Side. The blanace of the universe from the very start of TPM is almost completely destroyed.

    I should take a moment here to point out the different types of Love presented in the Saga, as I think this is important as well, and relates to the balance. There is a big difference between compassionate, giving love, and love as a selfish attachment (e.g., romantic love). Qui-Gon is someone full of unconditional, compassionate love for his fellow beings. Anakin's love is all about attachment and selfishness - his speech at Shmi's grave is all about himself rather than her (note the contrast between Anakin's speech and Cliegg's speech - Cliegg talks about Shmi, Anakin talks about himself), and he never, ever tells Padme that he truly
  2. TIE1138 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 4
    Very interesting theory, and I agree with a lot of it. We're currently discussing a topic very related to what you bring up here. I'd like to hear what you would have to contribute to our discussion if you get the chance.
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