Saga Star Wars Philosophy: Jedi and Sith

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Twi'lekPrince, Mar 24, 2013.

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  1. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    More like the other way around. The Sith are Dark Side practitioners, while the Dark Side of the Force might be called a force of nature, with little concern for the mortals which worship or utilise it. As far as the plot of the Saga is concerned, yes, it is the Sith who seem to be the only ones bothering to harness the Dark Side in any meaningful way, but once they're gone, the Dark Side will still endure, and the absence of one cult might as well be the same to it as the loss of a fingernail. I'm sure the ST will include such evil characters, but let's hope the filmmakers don't take the cheap option of labelling the next Dark Side users as 'Sith'.

    Similarly, the good/light side of the Force itself isn't necessarily bound to the Jedi, although the Jedi are bound to it. The abandoned concept of the Whills (yes, I know it can't be accepted as canon, but it's a reflection of GL's thinking) suggests that there are beings and those that serve them with a different - and perhaps superior - approach to understanding the nature of the Force. The PT did emphasise the fallibility and complacency of the Jedi, while in hindsight the OT does much the same to the Sith.
  2. Placeholder Force Ghost

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    I'm hoping that the sequels shows us a greater range of force users. And a greater range of thought on the force.

    After all, the force simply is. It is created by life, all life. It transcends human (or alien) manipulation, it is life force itself.
    Last edited by Captain Tom Coughlin, Jun 9, 2013
  3. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

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    It is fair to say that nothing really suggests "special-ness" on Luke's part in ANH. But arguably his special-ness comes to the fore in several places in TESB. And ROTJ is no prequel, so its contribution to the question of Luke's special-ness shouldn't be ignored as a part of the overall impression of the trilogy.

    But can anybody "use the Force" at Jedi level, in the most typical connotation of the phrase, or are Muggles like the Jangos restricted to only what we've seen them do so far - sitting around talking with perhaps a vague warm fuzzy feeling?

    More accurately, the Sith are the only dark side users depicted on screen, discounting the Jedi. Anybody can use the Force, remember?

    From the fact that one is a side of the Force and the other is an organization.

    This seems to presume that the adjective "bad" cannot be applied to a thing unless that thing is actually the aggregation of evil, but such is not the case.

    It could be exactly what is depicted in the films: the destruction of the Sith and the implied downfall of the Empire. By what rationale can this interpretation be casually ignored?

    By inspection of the above a problem emerges: these conditions, as interpreted, are not counterparts of one another. Evil taking over is not the same thing as evil existing in the first place. So these statements do not fit together when "evil is destroyed" is logically misinterpreted. In other words, the Force goes out of balance as evil takes over, but evil must be destroyed for the Force to be considered back in balance? If the Force goes out of balance as evil takes over, then for balance to be restored all that should be required is that evil be removed from its place of primacy.

    As anyone can see I have consistently linked the imbalance as being related to the Sith ( as does ROTS ). The problem is that destroying the Sith does not destroy the dark side, nor is the imbalance caused by the very existence of the dark side. One may kill the user of a thing, but that does not mean the thing in question is also destroyed as an automatic result.
    Last edited by Arawn_Fenn, Jun 9, 2013
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  4. darth ladnar Jedi Grand Master

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    Here's the difficulty I'm having with this discussion, and Darth Nub's post references this idea. Where exactly do the properties of being a Sith end and the properties of the dark side begin and where exactly do the properties of being a Jedi end and properties of the light side begin?

    Here's an example of this distinction. The dark side seems to encourage people to sate their passions, but Plagueis teaches Palpatine that he must sometimes ignore this impulse so that he can achieve a greater goal. So, there are times Palpatine would really like to Force choke somebody but instead he kisses their butt so that he can manipulate them and achieve greater political power. So, here we have a clear distinction. The dark side impels Palpatine to want to act in one way, but the Sith philosophy tells him not to act that way.

    There are certainly some aspects of the Jedi ways and the Sith ways that clearly are certainly their own inventions. The rule of two. The taking of children at a young age to avoid attachments. Etc.

    However, once you get beyond that stuff it becomes very difficult for me to know where the Jedi interpretation of the light side's properties begin and where the actual properties of the light side ends. The same goes for the Sith and the dark side.

    Also, what is the relationship between the dark side with evil and the light side with good? The dark side is clearly closely associated with evil in the films and EU, and the light side with good. Even the cave filled with dark side is clearly ominous and not a happy place. But does the will of the dark side only enourage traits in people (aggressiveness, selfishness, etc.) that tend to lead to evil, or does the will of the dark side only work through the dark side users, or does the will of the dark side work through all individuals who are evil whether they are Force-sensitive or not?

    Also, it very hard for me to distinguish whether dark side does continue on if all dark side practitioners are killed off. These practicioners might be instruments of the dark side, and if it's instruments seize to exist, maybe the dark side loses all vessels in which it can affect the GFFA. I don't think that Anakin's fulfilling the prophecy achieves this b/c he is only correcting an imbalance created by Plagueis/Palpatine, but is this concept possible? By destroying all those who work according to the will of the dark side does the dark side lose its capacity to influence the GFFA?

    Then the concept of the will of the Force opens a lot of questions. Is there one will of the Force and the Force at different times wills both the dark side and the light side? Or is the will of the Force split totally in two with the light side willing one thing and the dark side willing another thing? Also, if the dark side wills separately on its own and the light side wills separately as well, then do these two sides compete or do these two sides cooperate?

    I think these last questions are the most important to this thread. If the two sides of the Force cooperate or if a single Force wills both the dark and light side, then the dark side and the light side would live on forever. However, if the dark side and light side are in competition, then at one point on side could eliminate the other if it becomes powerful enough.

    Any thoughts?

    I'm particularly interested in all of your thoughts about how to know where the properties of the dark side/light side end and the practices of the Sith/Jedi begin.
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  5. Iron_lord Chosen One

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    In the Dawn of the Jedi series, we see Force users using both. Maybe the lead-up to The Force Wars, when people chose one or the other and fought, will tell us more?
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  6. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    You can't really take anything in the EU as definitive, particularly on a topic like this. At most, it's simply tolerated as not currently contradicting GL's vision.
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  7. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    It's my vague theory that the deleted scenes with Qui-Gon from ROTS in which he mentions the Shaman of the Whills may once have been a sort of 'hook' into the ST (before GL decided once & for all - ho ho - that Eps I-VI should be somewhat self-contained), so anything's possible.

    That's purely speculation on my part, though, there's no evidence for it.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Jun 10, 2013
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  8. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn The Other Saga Moderator

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    I wonder, now that they're making a Sequel Trilogy, if that will be filmed and added to a "special edition" of ROTS for whenever the next release of it will be. (Assuming your hypothesis is correct.) Like adding Coruscant into ROTJ for the special edition.
  9. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    Maybe - although it was rumoured that Liam Neeson was going to record the lines for a scene to be included in the Blu-Ray at the same time he voiced Qui-Gon for TCW, and it didn't happen.

    It could still be done, though, the scene only includes Yoda & Qui-Gon, so 100% CGI. I could have sworn there were two scenes, the scripts I'm looking at only feature Qui-Gon in one - although Yoda references the Whills & Qui-Gon in the later scene with Obi-Wan, no idea if the extended dialogue was ever shot.

    You all heard it here first, so if the ST involves the Whills and they do include the Qui-Gon scenes in the next version of ROTS to connect them to it, I want a bloody screenwriting credit.
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  10. darth ladnar Jedi Grand Master

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    Um, I may have beat you to it, Darth Nub! :) I'd really like the concept of the Whills being explored in the ST, and here's the documentary evidence of when I suggested it: http://boards.theforce.net/threads/the-whills.50010989/page-2#post-50655023!!!! I actually think the Whills would be accepted much better than midi-chlorians were, which initially I was neutral about and now I like.

    BTW, I really wished GL had included that dialogue about the Whills. Casual fans would have been confused by it, but big time fans would recognize that the Whills was one of the original ideas of SW, and now it would finally be coming full circle.
  11. only one kenobi Jedi Grand Master

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    Hmmm...but here you are arguing the a-priori position of there being a separate and distinct 'darkside' and 'lightside' of the Force. It would be odd to project such a sentiment upon the point I was making, especially given that it seems this is exactly what the debate hinges upon. So perhaps I did not explain what I meant clearly enough.

    In terms of the movies, in terms of how the darkside is manifested within the movies, it appears that the only darkside practitioners are the Sith. From that starting point it is perfectly valid to see the darkside as describing the use of the Force, rather than being a distinct form of the Force itself. What I mean by that is, it is about a choice of use, and more specifically, of imposing one's will and (perhaps most importantly) desire onto the Force. So that the Jedi would always try and operate from within the Force, attempting to flow with it's 'will' as much as possible, whereas the Sith would seek to bend the Force to their will.

    That would explain how the Sith imbalance the Force, for it is distorted to their will. This fits pretty neatly with Eastern (Buddhist, Taoist) principles where the nearest term to 'evil' is 'the way of man' - and it should be noted that the fundamental truth of Buddhism is that all suffering stems from desire, and our inability to ever sate that desire - as well as coming to detest that which we feel blocks us from sating it.

    The route to peace is to learn that one must defeat one's own ego and come to terms with the natural flow of things. That is the lesson that Luke came to understand at the end of ROTJ; he needed to defeat himself, not others. He could be Darth Vader as much as his father could, by forcing his will - in anger, with fear, with hatred - upon the situation he found himself in.

    So (and I have digressed far more than I intended, so apologies) the darkside, in this way, is 'the way of man', the desires, fears and hostility imposed because of the ego, the adulation of self. This is reflected in Luke's training - specifically Yoda's speech about 'luminous beings'; about all things being of the Force. It is reflected in regards to the meditative, self-controlled discipline of the Jedi, of the idea of letting go.



    Indeed, the 'darkside' will always be around, because there will always be desire, fear and loathing - so that it is the darkside practitioners, those who bend the Force to their will, and their destruction that brings balance to the Force.

    What I am saying is, there is nothing in the movies that forces me to see the Force any other way. That is the whole of it.
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  12. only one kenobi Jedi Grand Master

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    Indeed, ROTJ does seem to begin the 'downward slope' into the genetic ubermensche sub-genre. I have explained how this did not perturb me too much at the time because I could see his familial relationship as simply being a sign of familial affinity. For instance, someone is genetically likely to be very tall and slim may have a greater affinity with becoming a basketball player than one who is less tall, perhaps stockier. It does not mean that the smaller man may never become a basketball player, but certainly the advantage is with the taller man (I believe the shortest NBA player was 5'3" - so predisposition is not the same things as 'only these people can').

    Well, I took it from the OT as a given that anybody could use the Force in the same way as the Jedi. I believe that that is what Lucas was saying. Of course it would take dedication, discipline and belief. All these aspects are...missing from the PT. As I have argued, the whole notion of genetically elite Force wielding beings is a consequence of the PT and TPM's midiclorians (combined with the singular lack of any seeming effort required of those 'Force sensitives' t learn to use the Force). In fact that is why I think Lucas' words have caused such ripples of alarm; they might appear odd from that perspective, but to me they seem simply....what I saw, what took from the movies anyway.

    Indeed, but I don't see that this alters the gist of my argument. Equally the Jedi and the Sith are the only users of the Force that we see in the movies. While anybody could use the Force, there are not that many who have been trained to. In the words of Qui-Gon, referring to Darth Maul; "Whatever it was it was trained in the Jedi arts" - so using the Force requires training.

    A-priori, self-referencing response. There is nothing within the movies that points to anything other than the darkside being an operative of the choice of the Force user.

    In terms of the discussion you refer to, I don't think Luke is questioning whether he will know if his meat, milk or vegetables are off. If he is referring to he 'bad side' as opposed to a 'good side' then in what way is 'bad side' here not to be equated with evil?

    No, I'm not ignoring that interpretation. That is exactly the interpretation that I mean. The 'evil' that he refers to are the Sith and their Empire.

    You are putting forth a false dichotomy though. I said that Lucas clearly meant something by it. What he means is the evil that is the Sith, the evil that was taking over. So, by destroying the Sith and the evil that they represent, that imbalances the Force, balance is restored.

    But this is to ignore that the Sith are trained users of the Force. The evil they pursue has a much greater impact upon the Force; they are bending the Force to their will. That, in the way that I see it, is the imbalance. Bringin balance to the Force by destroying the Sith and destroying evil in the universe. He clearly meant something by that and that is what I am proposing he meant. Because you are right, it is ludicrous to suggest that all evil will die with the Sith, but their 'evil' had a much greater impact upon the Force.

    In terms of this argument that the universe requires, in some way, the darkside in order to be balanced; I'm interested to know what this darkside is. Is anybody arguing, for instance, that torture, murder, slavery, war etc. must exist for there to be balance? If not, then what, exactly, is this darkside?
  13. MOC Yak Face Moderator, Classic Trilogy

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    Good question. I'd say anger, fear, hurt, sadness, grief, death have to exist in order for there to be balance. Those things are of the dark side, but really without them there is no peace, tranquility, happiness or life. One side is in part defined by the other. When those 'dark' things are allowed to spiral out of control and dominate, you get imbalance and the things you've listed above.
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  14. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    Ah, OK, I see what you mean. I think the films do suggest somewhat that there are good & evil sides to the Force itself - or rather, that some characters (largely the more dogmatic Jedi) believe this to be the case, but certain developments in the PT put this into a bit more of an ambiguous light, i.e. that what the Jedi believe isn't necessarily the whole truth.
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  15. only one kenobi Jedi Grand Master

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    An interesting list, and thank you for responding to the question. Death is not seen by the Jedi as of the darkside - Yoda refers to it as a natural part of life, which I agree with. Grief and sadness...I can see that they are a part of frindship, attachment and even simple compassion. I don't see those as darkside either, provided that they are accepted for what they are; grief and sadness for oneself at one's own loss; grief at the loss of someone who was capable of being loved, liked and/or admired. But coming to terms with that, and understanding those feelings as being a result of the happiness they brought is a part of accepting death.

    As for anger and fear. Difficult concepts, these can be. Fear - as in an instinctive knowledge of danger - is a good thing. Learning to avoid large, fast moving creatures with large pointy teeth is a pretty useful survival tool. But fear of loss, fear of change, fear of difference, fear of failure - those I would agree are darkside, but I don't see how they are necessary - in fact I would suggest that that kind of fear leads to negative (darkside) actions.

    In terms of anger, it depends upon what you mean. I would argue that change can only come about if you have a sense of wrong in actions and having a sense of anger about that enough that you will act. I don't believe in utter pacifity - for the simple reason that I don't believe people are incapable of doing bad. But is that sense of ...outrage the same as anger? Isn't anger action predicated purely on that outrage, without considering the consequences and the motivation for your actions? By which I mean, by acting on anger do you really address the issue that caused you outrage? If, for example, you see one bigger child hit a smaller child and you, in your outrage hit the bigger child, have you really addressed what you are outraged by, or have you - rather - simply become a part of the same behaviour?

    Again, I don't see that (action in anger) as being necessary.
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  16. only one kenobi Jedi Grand Master

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    I'm interested to know what it is i the movies that leads you to this interpretation - genuinely, I'm not goading. Perhaps I see it as I do because that is how I see 'evil' in reality - as the manifestation of mankind's desires, particularly for control and privilege at the expense of others.
  17. MOC Yak Face Moderator, Classic Trilogy

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    Good points only one.

    I think there’s a distinction between the feelings themselves and the actions which may or may not follow them. Certainly a distinction in terms of what's necessary. IMO the former are, the latter aren’t. Fear, in its pure, reactive form, is necessary for survival, and anger, as an instinct, is a natural part of the grieving process. They are necessary for physical and mental wellbeing. For survival. When these things aren’t addressed and processed properly, actions can follow which are undesirable and not necessary. This is where the disparity between the Jedi and Sith philosophy comes in.

    In the movies, the Jedi philosophy is kind of reduced to catchphrases and bumper sticker philosophy, so it’s sometimes thought that these emotions are in and of themselves perceived as evil. I doubt that’s the intention. Fear leads to anger, anger to hate, hate to suffering etc doesn't mean fear is always bad because it always leads to suffering. Also, there’s a different standard for Jedi and regular citizens in terms of controlling anger and fear because of the immense power they wield and the consequences of losing control of these things. You or I get overly angry and we kick a hole in the wall. Anakin loses his rag and he tries to, you know, take over the galaxy!
    Last edited by DarthDuckie, Jun 11, 2013
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  18. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    On a purely literal level, there isn't anything specific or explicit, it's merely the context of the fantasy world that gives me that impression - that there is 'good' and 'evil', and that they manifest themselves as the two different sides of the Force, almost as if they are two godlike, conscious entities. The attempt at seducing Luke in ROTJ, along with the idea that Vader is enslaved forever by the Dark Side, just reinforces the idea that the Dark Side is something that can't be conquered with a bit of self-control.

    I do understand and agree with your position that good and evil are really manifestations of the actions of the individual, rather than magical forces, and also believe that the SW Saga addresses this concept. However, I don't think the two positions are mutually exclusive in the SW universe.
    Envisioning the Force as a sort of god or higher power merely emphasises and exaggerates the importance of the behaviour of characters like Luke and Anakin in this fairy tale, and gives the influence of 'the Dark Side' a more tangible presence, making it easier and more exciting for the audience to become engaged in the story. At the same time, they do bear responsibility for their actions.

    Probably the best analogy I've heard over the years is that the Dark Side is like an addictive drug. Heroin isn't 'evil' in itself - it's not even alive or conscious - but the influence it can have on its addicts and what it compels them to do goes far beyond their normal desires and their baser instincts. In that sense, I think the Dark Side is presented as something similarly separate to those it consumes.

    In that sense, while the Dark Side of the Force is a metaphor for the potential 'evil' that lies within us, that's George Lucas, Lawrence Kasdan et al speaking metaphorically - but Yoda, Qui-Gon, Vader, Palpatine etc are speaking of it literally.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Jun 12, 2013
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  19. only one kenobi Jedi Grand Master

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    I think you have hit upon something here, something that I had not fully addressed before. Star Wars is an unusual genre in that it is regarded (now) as Sci-Fi/Fantasy. I suppose I see it as I do because I am, first and foremost, a sci-fi afficionado - I'm not really into fantasy (were it not for Emilia Clarke and the, frankly, great characterisations and actors, the dragons could have killed Game of Thrones for me). So, for me the fantasy structure is...redundant. You could argue that the use of the Force itself is a fantasy element, but I see that as a Sci-Fi element (in the same way as the prana-bindu powers within Dune are).

    You might be surprised how easy it is to ignore the fantasy elements (and this particularly holds with the OT), especially if Fantasy is predominantly your thing. So, Star Wars is close to my heart because it introduced me to science fiction and because (at a time when it dawned on me that the stories in religious asemblies we had were actually supposed to be believed...) old Obi-Wan hinted at a spiritual framework I could understand.

    In short, what I'm saying is; I'm almost bound to view Star Wars very differently from others because I view it from the perspective of it being a genre distinct from how others view it. That probably explains my distaste for the 'prophecy' 'chosen one' etc. story arc (which is an aspect I think is covered far more interestingly in Dune...).

    Interesting. Think on this, I will.
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  20. MOC Yak Face Moderator, Classic Trilogy

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    Perhaps it's because of my personality, but I've always been more impressed by the SW characters' human, rather than their superhuman, qualities and I think that probably impacts on the way I see the force. In the end it was Anakin and Luke's human qualities (selflessness, courage, insight), which defeated the Emperor. Their abilities with the force were in the end irrelevant, at least in terms of the force being a magical, fantasy or sci-fi element. However, if, as Dath_Nub suggests, the dark side is a symbol of the potential evil that resides within us all, by not giving in to anger and hate in the face of the ultimate temptation, it could be said that they proved themselves to be the strongest in the force after all.
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  21. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

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    But how do we know that the Force is anything like basketball, making this anything more than an apples and oranges comparison? Must the Force be like basketball simply because some wish it to be?

    But he didn't say it in the OT. He said it in a conversation with someone that was published thirty years after the OT ended. When the opportunity came to stick it in the film, he declined. We might wonder why.

    Not quite. I thought Qui-Gon made it clear to Anakin that dedication and discipline were required. As to the question of belief, the dynamics of that one may be slightly different at a time when the Jedi are still extant ( and it probably helps when people call you the Chosen One right in front of you ).

    And the OT as well.

    I have no idea what this is supposed to mean, unless it's another iteration of "didn't see it, didn't happen".

    But not necessarily the only users of the Force out there.

    Training oneself has to be an option at some level, or else how did these orders originate in the first place? That is not to say that one might expect to train oneself to Jedi Master level, but even lower-level interaction with the Force would count as Force use. And there is the issue of failed Jedi of the past and whatever legacies they might have left behind. In a big galaxy it seems untenable to assume that there is nothing like that going on anywhere.

    Except in the same film we see that Anakin has used the Force, after a fashion, without training.

    No.

    Whatever you take "side of the Force" to mean, it is still not the same thing as a group of people ( specifically a subset of the Force adepts shown on screen ), because the Force is not a group of people.

    By using the phrase "within the movies" here, you make it clear that you're once again running away from authorial intent at full speed, which only makes it seem absurd when you insist on Lucas positions such as "everyone can use the Force" that are not presented "within the movies". You seem convinced that the rightness or wrongness of your position on Force use depends upon Lucas' words, so how is it that your position on the sides of the Force is not held to the same standard? The Dagobah cave is strong with the dark side of the Force. Does this somehow mean that it is "strong with the Sith"? Are there any Sith in there? And Luke still isn't the kind of imbecilic character who would have to ask someone else to explain the difference between good and bad behavior. But already we've run into more trouble than that. If the dark side is as described above, that still doesn't make it something we can equate with the Sith, which is an organization. Nor could we equate its demise with the demise of the Sith. How would eliminating the Sith prevent any other Force users from making such "choices"?

    No, he's talking about the sides of the Force. The list of things that can be described with the adjective "bad" is not restricted to meat, milk, vegetables, and the aggregation of evil. It can also refer to many other things, such as a side of the Force which is not the aggregation of evil.

    Then you don't get "destroys the dark side" from that, even if one goes along with the "dark side = evil" substitution.

    No, it does not ignore that. I referred to use of the Force: One may kill the user of a thing, but that does not mean the thing in question is also destroyed. The Sith use the dark side, they do not create it.
    Last edited by Arawn_Fenn, Jun 12, 2013
  22. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

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    A quote from Shatterpoint comes to mind:
    Internal and external darkness create each other, just as do internal and external light: that is the underlying unity of the Force.

    Given that we have been told in the films that Sith use the dark side, to characterize the dark side as use becomes incoherent: "use the dark side" becomes "use use of the Force". The dark side is a side of the Force itself, rather than a "side" ( category? ) of use of the Force.

    But that is precisely what the Jedi do when they go into action. In ANH Ben stated outright that the Force obeys your commands. If no one ever imposed their desire onto the Force, no Force powers would ever get used. And when in TESB Yoda is asked to specify how one will be able to tell the difference between the sides, he ( like everyone else ) says nothing of this. What he does say implies that the difference between the sides can become obscured when one is no longer calm. But does an "alternative" definition of the dark side of the Force require a state of calmness to be understood?
    Last edited by Arawn_Fenn, Jun 12, 2013
  23. only one kenobi Jedi Grand Master

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    What do you mean by must it be? I'm not telling anyone how it must be, I was describing what I took it to be.

    Why, I wonder, have you split up a perfectly cogent answer into neat little snippets? You wish to address each point as if they are separate arguments - and even pretend distinction within sentences.

    Lucas didn't say anything directly in either the OT or the PT, only the characters did. I'm not sure why the length of time between the words being spoken and their being published has any relevance to what I said. I said I believe that was what Lucas was suggesting (ie that anyone could use the Force in the way that the Jedi could). As for your point about whether he declined to "stick it in the film"....I really don't know what you are arguing, but I will address this aspect a little later, where it is relevant*

    Qui-Gon said it once. At no point do we see a Jedi struggling to come to terms with Jedi powers. My point here was to show how the PT portrays Jedi training distinctly from what we see in the OT. Specifically (given the context of what I am saying) that the ease with which Jedi seemingly pass into Force usage bolsters the idea of 'genetic elite' - in as much as it can appear that it comes easily to them. The point (in context) is that of contrast between what we are shown in the OT and what we are shown in the PT - such that what appears as 'obvious' from a PT perspective, is not so from an OT perspective.



    See above (for context), and below for the remainder of the same sentence...

    Well, perhaps if you had not split this off from the sentence it was a part of, and seen it in the context of the argument (as opposed to treating it as a separate series of arguments) there would be no need for the confusion. It is precisely because I am contrasting what is seen in the PT compared to the OT - and how that can impact upon how one views the Jedi (particularly with regards to their being a 'genetic elite').

    Also, odd that you would make this argument and then....only a few sentences later say

    ...so, here we have - in contrast with the OT - an example of 'ease of use' by Jedi.

    Utterly irrelevant, given that I am explaining how it can be seen within the movies.

    Speculation which misses the point. In terms of what we see in the films the only Force users are the Jedi and the Sith. In terms of what we see with Luke, learning to use the Force requires a lot of dedication, belief and training. There is nothing in the movies to suggest that, other than the Jedi and the Sith, there are individuals capable of using the Force to the degree that they do. Again, this comes down to how it can be seen a particular way within the movies.

    See above for how this contrasts with the OT. Also this isn't vital to the argument. I used it to show yet more evidence that how I interpret the Force is perfectly valid within the framework of the movies.

    If I take the darkside of the Force as being the result of the choices that individuals trained in the Force make(which I do), then the darkside of the Force is represented by that group of people, and the darkside of the Force is an imposition of those people - such that the two (the group of people and the results of their choices) become synonymous.

    *Here is where this becomes relevant. To refer to the original question you raised in this post (Must the Force be...) I have not argued (despite your claims here) that how I see the Force has any inherent 'rightness'. All along my argument has been that it is valid to see the Force this way, that it can be seen this way.

    You claim that I "insist on Lucas position" which is entirely wrong - you have the argument entirely upon its head. I brought up Lucas stated position in order to highlight that you were wrong to judge the author's intent upon your interpretation of the movies. It was you who argued what Lucas' intent was on the basis of what you saw - which is why you argued that the idea that anybody could use the Force was not the intention of the author - and that anybody who had taken that from the movies was fantasizing.

    The argument is upon its head because you are the one insisting on a right way and a wrong way to view the saga.

    Oddly, though you bring up authorial intent as paramount, it seems that is only when that suits your perspective. Here, instead of accepting that you were wrong to presume Lucas' intentions, you insist that authorial intent has had no impact upon the movies....


    And what, ultimately, is down in the cave? Only Luke. Only Luke and his thoughts. What does he conjure as the Sith? Darth Vader. Upon cutting down Vader and seeing himself, does he get it? Why does Yoda tell Luke he will not need his weapon? He tells the young man the cave is strong with the darkside and Luke is supposed to learn what that is - that it exists within him; it is not external - he is actually all that is down there. He does not get that until the throne room scene in ROTJ.


    But he is the kind of thoughtful character who worries that, in the heat of the moment he may not act entirely on the side of good. He ackowledges that with these powers comes responsibility...how will he know if what he does is right? Only an imbecile would unquestioningly believe in their own righteousness.


    That last question is, surely, the pivot upon which the final scenes with Luke play out - at least as I see it. In a series of movies about choices Luke comes to understand that it is not about victory over the Sith, but about preserving the integrity of his 'soul' - that his fall to the darkside would be a defeat far greater than physical defeat at thwe hands of the Sith. He understands that the darkside is in himself, is about what he chooses to do.

    So...the battle between good and evil is...different from the battle between good and bad? I don't see how you are differentiating this 'bad side' as opposite to 'good side' as not being the same as 'evil' vs 'good'.
    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn likes this.
  24. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    He didn't have to. He's only the interviewer. Are we to discard all interview content because the interviewers weren't part of the production team?

    He interviewed those who were part of the process, and referred to transcripts of the story meetings. IMO that should be good enough.

    I'm questioning whether basketball analogies have any relevance to Force use. As far as we know they do not.

    And yet it's frequently suggested that we should believe in the scenarios presented by character dialogue. This particular line of argument is self-defeating. If Lucas must rely on characters to present information, then characters say the things Lucas wants to get across to the audience. So why did the "everyone can use the Force" message not appear in this way? This still hasn't been answered. If the reason why Leia can use the Force is because "everyone can", why didn't Luke say so?

    And why is this not enough? Did he need to say it in every scene? Are we revising Qui-Gon into an essentially duplicitous character?

    These two sentences aren't even consistent with one another. If we don't see Jedi training, how do we know it's distinct from what we see in the OT? Once again we come to the issue of making unsupported conclusions about things we don't see. How does not being able to see PT Jedi training "show" anything?

    There's not necessarily any contrast with the OT given that Luke was also piloting before being trained. But I thought we were talking about "Jedi training", not "ease of use" by the untrained.

    It's relevant if what "can be seen" is treated as fact, so that other conclusions can be based upon it.

    And there is nothing to suggest that it is not that way for anyone else, such as PT-era Jedi, while there is some evidence that it is that way for others. So the "difference" here is imaginary.

    I referred to your position on the issue of who can use the Force: Lucas said it, therefore it's accurate. So the question remains: why is Lucas' word suddenly not good enough when it comes to the sides of the Force?

    And the Force. Specifically, the dark side of the Force. Remember, just because you can't see it doesn't mean it isn't there.

    Again we seem to be dealing with "Yoda the bad teacher". If that were the lesson he wanted Luke to learn, he would presumably have said so. But that does not seem to actually be Yoda's message, which is not surprising: Yoda is a Lucas character, after all, and we know from Lucas' own words that he does not believe any such thing. The dark side of the Force is, as the name indicates, of the Force, not "of the individual". Since no individual is the Force, that makes it ( like the Force as a whole ) external to any specific person.

    But those are the same thing in the sense that if Luke falls to the dark side, he becomes a de facto Sith. So victory over the Sith includes his not becoming one of them.

    No, the light side and the dark side are not necessarily the aggregates of good and evil respectively. Something does not have to be the aggregation of evil to be described by the adjective "bad".
    Last edited by Arawn_Fenn, Jun 17, 2013
  25. The Supreme Chancellor Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    @Arawn_Fenn Him not becoming a Sith doesn't mean victory over the Sith. They would continue to rule the galaxy.
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