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Lit Socrates in Star Wars: Vergere in the NJO and philosophy

Discussion in 'Literature' started by DigitalMessiah, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    Nothing Vergere says is inconsistent with Jedi doctrine.

    Most recent Essential Guides have been written from an in-universe perspective. I don't know if this is true of EGW.
    Last edited by DigitalMessiah, Aug 6, 2013
  2. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    There's certainly "in universe" extracts (interviews, transcripts of interrogations, recordings, and so forth) - but there's also bits that seem more "omnicient narrator" - as per much of The Essential Atlas. The bit about Krayt was one.

    And the recording of Vergere's conversation with Tahiri, at the time Nen Yim and her boss were Shaping her, certainly made her look disturbingly ruthless.
  3. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    It also makes zero sense.
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  4. Grey1 Host: 181st Imperial Discussion Group

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    Nov 21, 2000
    star 4
    Based on my experiences over the last decade Traitor is a treat for people who already are open to philosophy, and know at least basic ideas (maybe even classic texts) of questioning everything for the fun of it, and it's "she said There is no Dark Side so Sith!!!" significantly more often for people who would need to be introduced to philosophy.


    Other than that, the semantics problem really hits when Traitor enters regular EU. Which is about stuff happening, about football team-like affiliations, about we need a picture and a clear definition in the Modernised New Enhanced Encyclopedia Of Stuff (With Extra Cheese). One example - in Traitor, the Embrace of Pain is an opening to a sequence of ideas. In Inferno, it shows Jacen=Evil Bastard!!!. It's not that different from Stover's other big trick, the definitive unreliable narrator in Mindor. Other unreliable narrators are just unreliable because literature students tell you so. Mindor has Luke explicitly saying, okay, whatever that was, it's not what should be in the Modernised New Enhanced Encyclopedia Of Stuff (With Extra Cheese). So we do not know. Because we weren't just given a collection of potential Wookieepedia pages, but a book that should make our brain use just a little bit more of its capacity.
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  5. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    You know, I really like this idea that writers can decide a character is evil, write a bunch of superfluous and out of character stuff depicting them as evil, and then claim the earlier depictions were them pretending to be good. Anyone can be Palpatine!
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  6. HWK-290 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 29, 2013
    star 2
    Re: Descartes and Kant, you'd be surprised to learn what some universities consider introductory. Imagine sitting down to Meditation V in your first week; "innumerable ideas of certain objects" took me a while to wrap my brain around.

    Nietzsche I only mentioned for certain parallels found in Stover's works.

    I'll take 10. If only so that I can pile them up in my backyard and set them on fire.
  7. Grey1 Host: 181st Imperial Discussion Group

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    You know, the prequels were the story of two competing Sith Lords fighting it out, with Palpatine winning and Yoda losing, but then Yoda found a Sith Apprentice in Luke who gave him sweet payback on Palpatine. The corresponding novel will be called "Dealing In Absolutes", but later be renamed into "Dark Absolutes".
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  8. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Oh, I'd believe it!

    There was a compulsory course on the Enlightenment, where I had to encounter Rene! In hindsight, I appreciate what it was out to do a lot more but they didn't really succeed at conveying that well at the time.
  9. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I could see a novelization of Dark Empire revealing via Luke's dialogue and/or flashback that Yoda taught Luke all this Sith material that we didn't see on screen during The Empire Strikes Back, and then Luke justifies apprenticing himself to Palpatine since Yoda was the weaker Sith Lord since he died.
  10. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Nah, Choose Your Own Adventure - You Are Darth Sidious!
  11. JediMatteus Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2008
    star 5
    sorry but Vegere did teach jacen to be a sith. She taught him that the world was his garden, and it was his right to be the gardener. This set up the arrogance that led to him thinking that a vision he had was true, and no one else could do what was necessary.
    Last edited by JediMatteus, Aug 6, 2013
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  12. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I am wondering if philosophy is necessarily the best thing to read when looking specifically for similar ideas to those presented in Traitor — unless one considers eastern religious writings to be philosophical. I see a lot of similarities in Taoism so the Tao te ching and the Zhuangzi are both useful — especially since the Taiji of Taoism is the best real world equivalent to the Unifying Force. Nagarjuna's Fundamental Verses of the Middle Way is also very similar.

    Most interestingly, Jung's concept of the shadow fits the dialectical monism as well, with the ego and the shadow being the dialectical components of the self. Cue Tom Veitch:

    "From my point of view, I think it’s profoundly important to 'penetrate the dark side and learn its secrets.' That’s the hero’s main task, in fact — not simply killing off his enemies. A personality that is divided into warring opposites must somehow become whole and complete. Carl Jung would call it 'integrating the Shadow.'

    "The three existing Star Wars films are about the battle of the hero and the Shadow in the form of the dark father. If there are ever to be filmed sequels to the current trilogy, it would be logical and mythologically satisfying to somehow depict 'integrating the Shadow.' In psychological terms, that would be inevitable, as part of the process of reunification of the galaxy and the re-emergence of the Jedi Knights. If the dark side is simply suppressed, pushed into the unconscious, then it will surely rise again."
    Last edited by DigitalMessiah, Aug 6, 2013
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  13. Reveen Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 2012
    star 3
    I think that's a big part of why the philosophy was taken so off the rails. The writers couldn't make the separation between the force philosophy and the violence of the stories. They took "there is no dark side" as tacit support for not actively fighting the dark side and even embracing it. What a Jedi is and is supposed to be really doesn't have much to do with whacking bad guys, the fact that they do that from time to time is kinda incidental. Killing sith jerks and resisting the odd dark side temptation does not necessarily a good Jedi make.

    It's kinda like someone being able to reconcile Buddhists needing to be non-confrontational, and some Buddhist monks being able to kick your ass. So one of these concepts ends up ditched, and they act like a good Shaolin monk is totally like David Carradine.

    If that makes any sense whatsoever.
    Last edited by Reveen, Aug 6, 2013
  14. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I think it's because when you read what's written absent critical analysis of what is meant, and not only that, but what was learned and observed how it is applied, you're going to misinterpret it, and a lot of fans did. It's my opinion that the writers saw that as tacit support for them to run with precisely that lowest common denominator idea to fuel their story, which was that they needed someone to turn to the dark side. If they wanted to avoid future confusion over the novel, they could have just left it as it was and kept Jacen as he was characterized after the novel, since Jacen never says anything about gardening or the absence of a dark side or anything like that, nor does he do anything morally questionable after Traitor. He refuses Zonama Sekot's military aid.
    Last edited by DigitalMessiah, Aug 6, 2013
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  15. HWK-290 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 29, 2013
    star 2
    Allow me.

    "But he blasted Vong with lightning in Destiny's Way, and lightning is a bad power used only by bad people!"
    Last edited by HWK-290, Aug 6, 2013
  16. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    It is only a matter of time before Luke and Jaina complete their downward spiral toward the dark side as a consequence of using Force lightning too.
  17. HWK-290 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 29, 2013
    star 2
    It's okay, though, Luke's lightning is green, green lightning is not evil because green is the color of life and Jedi lightsabers.
  18. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I think Jacen's was green too? I don't have my copy of the book in front of me.
  19. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Green lightning arose around about the same time Plo Koon's "Electric Judgement" light-side version arose, thus necessitating the Sith Lightning distinction - a unique, far more destructive on multiple levels version.
  20. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I always thought Force lightning should be a purely Sith technique, and not something which Jacen and Jaina should be capable of doing because they never had anyone with Sith lineage teach it to them. Luke, on the other hand, was briefly apprenticed to Palpatine, so it makes sense for him.

    And I checked Destiny's Way, and Jacen's Force lightning is described as "brilliant emerald fire," and it was nonlethal. Jacen's Force lightning was kosher.
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  21. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Personally, I'm of that view. It should be a highly restricted, very elite Dark Side power that few Sith can really wield, but I can live with gradations of it. Plus Plo Koon really fuzzes the picture too.
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  22. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I was looking at Tom Veitch's apparent website (it looks like a 90s website) to see if he's done anything lately, and under his Dark Empire section, there is the following quotation:

    "A Jedi does not grasp at power. A Jedi is not a dominator, not an oppressor. To grasp for power is to abandon the Ways of the Force. Such a one ceases to know the Force, except in his Dark Side. To grasp at power is to take up the path that leads to destruction. The dominator is the enemy, yes. But the Jedi do not use the dark powers of the dominator against him."

    I found the language interesting, and reminiscent of his end notes for Dark Empire, which are sadly not included with the most recent release of the hardbound collection of Dark Empire, Dark Empire II, and Empire's End. Has anyone read those end notes?
  23. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    I've gotten the paperback rather than hardback versions (DE2 and Empire's End in a combined one) and the quote is word for word what was in the DE endnotes.
  24. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    That doesn't surprise me. It is in the DESB as well. You can see Jung's influence.

    I've got a TPB collection of DE1 that I've held onto for the end notes.
  25. Likewater Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2009
    star 4

    Is that why he spent almost six books not killing, and asked his uncle to go on a million and one shot for this living planet so they don't have to commit genocide?

    The fact is she did not teach that, its just an allegory she uses and some people like grab that and run with it even though it does not match up with Jacen's actions Between the beginning of Destinies Way to the end of Unified Force.
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