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PT Picture Essay: Kenobi's Trauma and Depression

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by xezene, Apr 9, 2016.

  1. xezene

    xezene Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 6, 2016
    Hey all. Star Wars emotional essay time.

    I tend to be quite interested and moved by the psychology of characters in film, and this is never more true than with Star Wars, as there is a plethora of good material to dive into there. What I want to tackle today is the issue of Obi-Wan Kenobi's emotional state after the events of Revenge of the Sith. While Anakin and Luke are the emotional focus of the movies, I think Obi-Wan has a powerful emotional arc not often explored in depth. I believe, from visual clues and from narrative material, we can effectively deduce that Kenobi never recovered from his experience during the events of Revenge of the Sith. It is not a far stretch to suggest that Anakin's fall and the destruction of everything he held dear may have been enough to have produced major depression in Kenobi during his desolation on Tatooine. Now, let's get started looking at this.

    Now, it's suffice to say that although Jedi tend to shun 'attachments,' Obi-Wan was a reasonably well-connected person. Despite his connection to duty and honor, under the surface we can see an emotionally well-adjusted person. He seemed to have many healthy connections with all manner of people for many years of his life. The Jedi were his home and his family, the Clones were his friends, and people on Coruscant like Padme and Dexter were his friends as well. He was to lose this entire support network and have it replaced on Tatooine with nearly nothing. And not only that, but he experienced unbelievable trauma, loss, and betrayal with Anakin, his closest connection. If all this were to happen to someone, we would expect the telltale signs of trauma, sorrow, remorse, regret, and depression. And sure enough, if we look closely, we see this clear pattern and development unfold in Obi-Wan.

    First, Obi-Wan is alerted to what is going by seeing the corpses of his fellow Jedi and de-facto extended family. He is even more moved and horrified by the sight of Jedi children killed. He seems stunned, and expresses helplessness, sorrow, confusion, and disbelief.
    [​IMG]

    After this, Obi-Wan looks at the security recordings to find Anakin as the murderer of the Jedi, the closest to family Obi-Wan has ever known. Not only that, but he sees Anakin bow to his new master Palpatine, which no doubt must have created powerful feelings of rejection and sadness in Obi-Wan, who had taken care of Anakin since he was a boy. It is after seeing this newfound betrayal that Obi-Wan remarks that he can't watch anymore, and he begs Yoda not to make him go fight Anakin. Even after everything he knows Anakin has done, all the horrors, and even considering Obi-Wan is a very dutiful, emotionally restrained Jedi, he still begs Yoda to let him fight the Emperor [a task that very well could result in Obi-Wan's death]. When Yoda tells him he must confront Anakin, Obi-Wan feigns ignorance as to where to find him. Finally, after some hinting from Yoda, Obi-Wan concedes and tries to find Anakin through Padme. It is here we see Obi-Wan's real emotions about the situation pop up in front of his friend Padme, his voice wavering, as he struggles to find the words for the horror of the situation.
    [​IMG]

    One can only imagine not just the sorrow, but the guilt and possibly even shame of having to reveal to your friend Padme that her husband, the boy you trained, has gone evil, and now you must kill him. Knowing that this situation has gotten so bad the only thing left is to do the unspeakable to prevent it from getting worse. We will see later on that Obi-Wan does harbor significant feelings of sadness, guilt, regret, and even shame from all that is occuring with Anakin, and with what Obi-Wan is going to have to do to stop him.
    [​IMG]

    Obi-Wan proceeds to sneak onto Padme's ship after this dark conversation, where he goes on to fight Anakin after Anakin force chokes Padme. Clearly we can see Obi-Wan is also concerned for Padme, as he checks to make sure she's alive, but he knows what he must do, and failing to talk Anakin out of his delusion, proceeds to fight him till the end, generally taking a defensive posture. However, at the end, Obi-Wan is forced to dismember his de-facto son/brother Anakin and we see that Obi-Wan's true sorrow emerges as he expresses his despair and mixed feelings of anger and love for Anakin. Finally, at the end, Obi-Wan walks away from the situation as his former student burns nearly to death. I believe at this point is must have been all too much for Obi-Wan to take, too much to bear.
    [​IMG]

    The last image of Anakin, who Obi-Wan cared more for than any other person, is this image, one of a distorted, twisted, hate-filled person, flesh burning away, convinced that Obi-Wan had ruined everything for him. Anakin's last words to Obi-Wan are "I hate you," and the last image he leaves seared into Obi-Wan's memory is this horror.
    [​IMG]

    Obi-Wan must walk away in a daze, a haunted man, perhaps knowing that his student has not only destroyed most of the Jedi Order but has seriously endangered Padme's life as well. But more than that, the strong personal connection has been poisoned and twisted. Obi-Wan walks on alone back to check on Padme, who asks if Anakin is alright. This clearly provokes feelings of trauma, sadness, shame, and guilt in Obi-Wan, knowing what the horrible act he had to do and the tragedy of the whole situation, as we see the beginnings of what is to become a staple of Obi-Wan's emotional hints from now on -- the thousand-yard stare.

    [​IMG]
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    I will let the following images speak for themselves.
    [​IMG]
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    [​IMG]

    But unfortunately the horror doesn't end there for Obi-Wan. He is then faced with his friend Padme's death. We can see this drives only further a feeling of helplessness and sorrow.
    [​IMG]

    The next time we see Obi-Wan reference any of these events emotionally, he is with Luke 19 years later. Obi-Wan reminisces about the good times during the hey-day of the Republic, with Anakin before the tragedy happened. But we see that just remembering those days seems to send Obi-Wan into an almost stunned, dissociated, depressed state. He has the posture of a defeated man. Considering Obi-Wan's circumstances on Tatooine as a reclusive hermit, and looking at Obi-Wan's very natural expression here, it would seem this is a familiar state for Obi-Wan to fall into. The sorrow is back, and it is palpable.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    When Luke asks about what happened to Anakin, we can see this jars Obi-Wan to some extent. There is a tiny sense of horror at answering this question, almost like Obi-Wan feels put-on-the-spot. This is clearly a very disturbing, vulnerable memory for him.
    [​IMG]

    He proceeds to answer reluctantly that Vader killed Anakin after he was seduced by the Dark Side. This is the first evidence we have that Obi-Wan has really latched onto Yoda' explanation of Anakin/Vader's identity split. In fact, we can see Obi-Wan is showing a form of splitting, where, to avoid painful truths, a person splits good from evil to help dissociate from the complexity of the focus. This can happen quite often as a coping mechanism in response to trauma. One must wonder if Obi-Wan eventually just had to believe that Anakin was dead and Vader was someone else entirely, because the thought of Anakin turning into Vader must have simply been too much for Obi-Wan to bear alone in the desert. We see, again, the empty, long stare of one has who survived trauma and lives with the sorrow and depression of the aftermath.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Speaking of which, overall we can see that Obi-Wan's personality seems considerably less amiable and energetic than his younger self. I would speculate it is these years of living in desolation after losing all of one's connections and having had to go through and do unspeakable things that resulted in this for Obi-Wan.

    Finally, we see him as a ghost for the last time before Luke, explaining what happened during the Clone Wars and at the tragic end. He seems to harbor a great sense of regret and guilt for what happened with Anakin. Not only that, but the depression seems to have stayed long enough to crust over into a kind of indifference. Completing the splitting behavior, he utterly rejects that Anakin is redeemable by telling Luke that Anakin is more machine now than man, just twisted and evil. He further explains that if Luke does not kill Vader, the Emperor wins. This is the look of a defeated man, who has a lifetime of perceived mistakes, darkness, remorse, and loss that he has ruminated over. The thousand-yard stare, again.
    [​IMG]

    Quite a contrast from this:
    [​IMG]

    Instead, contrasted with the below image, we see the above image of the long lines of sorrow, the look of a hollow man. A man who has undergone tremendous psychological trauma and who lived long enough to pass on what he could of the good aspects he remembered from his younger years. Everything good that Obi-Wan gives to Luke comes from his years of joy and freedom with the Jedi during the Clone Wars, before everything fell apart. Obi-Wan does not seem to give anything substantively good to Luke from his years on Tatooine, and I think that's because there was probably very little good during those years for him. He had lost everyone and everything dear to him, and Tatooine was the dusty end of the road. It was likely a long desolate period of loneliness, regret, and sadness, punctuated by trying to connect spiritually with Qui-Gon. As a result, he seems much more of a shell of a man compared to his former self. I would speculate he experienced strong depression from those years, as evidenced by some of these hints above. That sort of trauma lasts with you. I can only empathize with Obi-Wan for the horrors he went through and saw.

    I will let Jude Watson summarize my thoughts on this, from her short story "Last One Standing":

    --
    "Why had he turned to the dark side? When did it happen? The Anakin he knew and loved couldn’t have done it. Something had twisted in him, and Palpatine had exploited it somehow. Obi-Wan knew it wouldn’t change anything to know, but he couldn’t help going over the same events, again and again. The chances he’d missed, the things he’d seen, the things he hadn’t.

    Obi-Wan reached the top of the dunes and began the hike down to the salt flats. He had grown used to land that constantly shifted under his feet. He had learned how to move forward even while the very ground he walked on fought his progress.

    Anakin had always hated sand. It was one of the many things about his Padawan that Obi-Wan understood better now that Anakin was dead. That was the horror of losing someone: Understanding came too late.

    Obi-Wan didn’t like the sand, either, but he was grateful for the absence of color. He didn’t find the planet beautiful, so at least he felt no loss when he traveled across the landscape. Once he had loved the vivid greens of forests, the deep blues of lakes and seas. Now everything blended into everything else, mesa, cliff, hill, road. There was no vegetation to refresh the eye, no sudden explosions of flowers to startle you into a fresh appreciation of living. He didn’t want to appreciate anything. He wanted a place of no color, flat light, dark shadow. It suited him now."
    --

    A sad finale and resting point for the life of a hero who saw his era outgrow him and all that he loved leave him. Yet, he knew his duty to watch over Luke, the bringer of hope (who perhaps brought to Obi-Wan some final solace as a ghost in the end, reunited with Yoda, Qui-Gon, and Anakin, the closest Obi-Wan had to a family). Even if for Obi-Wan life on Tatooine was a remnant of its former glory, he made sure his last years counted for something, even if only a glimmer of what once was. He was the good Jedi soldier, the 'negotiator,' and in spite of all the darkness he never fell from the light. He carried on the best he could, given the circumstances of his total isolation. But I don't believe he ever really recovered from what happened. We can all feel for him.

    But I want to hear your thoughts. What do you think? What's your take on Obi-Wan's emotional life, post-Utapau? Do you relate to any parts of Obi-Wan's sorrow? How would you describe his emotional world? Would it have helped Obi-Wan emotionally more if he had not been a hermit on Tatooine? I feel that his story is an emotional one not always focused on but of real importance and weight. A truly powerful and timeless story.

    In memoriam of the two true victims of the events of Revenge of the Sith and Anakin's fall:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. {Quantum/MIDI}

    {Quantum/MIDI} Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2015
  3. jaex

    jaex Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Dec 31, 2015
    Great post! Man, Obi-Wan had one sad life.

    re: Obi-Wan dissociating Vader from Anakin
    I absolutely see it as a coping mechanism for Obi-Wan. I think it’s near impossible for Obi-Wan to truly understand that the boy he raised, his best friend and his brother is the same person who also joined the Sith and slaughtered Jedi, including children. Accepting that the person you love has turned into something else entirely would be extremely difficult for anyone. I think it’s easier for Obi-Wan to tell himself that Anakin became so twisted by the Dark side that he’s no longer even the same person - that Anakin no longer exists and basically his corpse is possessed by this evil creature Darth Vader.

    It also makes it easier for Obi-Wan to accept some of his own choices, I think. I mean, if he were to accept that Anakin and Vader are the same person, how would he feel about his own actions on Mustafar? He dismembered Anakin and left him to burn to death. He didn’t even give him a quick death, he walked away and abandoned Anakin to die a slow, extremely painful death, only to be rescued by the same evil creep who sought to manipulate and control him all along. Doing that to a kid you’ve practically raised and who you love as a brother is pretty harsh. I imagine it would be easier for Obi-Wan to tell himself that Anakin was gone at that point anyway. (Just to be clear: I’m not blaming Obi-Wan, but I think he could blame himself, especially after living alone for years on a sad sand planet with nothing much to do except think about the past and what he could have done differently).

    It also seems to be the standard Jedi way of seeing the Dark side and those who fall to it. Yoda tells Obi-Wan in ROTS that Anakin is consumed by Darth Vader, and the boy Obi-Wan trained is gone. I get the impression that for the traditional Jedi the Dark side is a one-way journey; that once you fall to the Dark side you can’t come back anymore. Anakin, too, seems to believe that in ROTJ. It’s only Luke who challenges that mindset, and he hadn’t been trained by the old Jedi order like Obi-Wan and Anakin had.
     
  4. ConservativeJedi321

    ConservativeJedi321 Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Amazing post.

    If I were him I probably would have spiraled into a deep deep depression a long time ago, but I admire how he just keeps pushing on.
     
    xezene likes this.
  5. Tonyg

    Tonyg Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Wow, xezene, wonderful essay. I was thinking almost the same when I was re-watching ROTS.
    But I dare blame Obi Wan for one thing in ROTS, maybe 2. When I say blame, I mean, the falling of the Jedi Order was not only a consequence of Anakin's falling and the Order 66. It was also a result of the Jedi's own mistakes, and leaders of the Jedi Order made huge mistakes also. Well, Obi Wan I should say made only 2 mistakes that was little but with big consequences.
    First, I'd like to say if someone asks me who is the ultimate Jedi, I would always answer, Obi Wan. He is the Jedi by the book. His strongest qualities can be described by those simple sentences: "think" and "always follow the code and the rules". He always rely on that , even since Phantom Menace. Obi Wan twice opposed to the rules and riled on his feelings and the funny thing is that in both cases he opposed to master Yoda: first, in TPM, when he decided to train Anakin and second, in ROTS when he (first) refused to go and (probably) kill him. And in both cases it would be the right thing to do, I dare say, but Obi Wan is not Qui Gon and in ROTS when Yoda insisted he at last agreed, because "there is no other way", we must accomplish the mission, in this case , destroying the Sith. For Obi Wan it was always the most important thing. In the beginning of ROTS he stop Anakin form helping of one of the pilots and after this to help him but Anakin (as always) didn't listen to him and saved him. THe reason was always the same: the cause/the duty is always bigger than your personal feelings. I would say: yes and no and as Obi Wan himself said: Only a Sith can deal in absolute. But in some moments Obi Wan become as merciless as the Sith exactly trying to accomplish the mission. In AOTC he said: leave Padme, we should catch Dooku. Anakin wanted to stop the ship to save her, Yoda himself choose to protect them no matter that he left Dooku escape from Geonosis, etc. But Obi Wan always chooses to accomplish the mission. Don't get me wrong, generally is the right thing to do, but in ROTS it results in fatal consequences.

    When Obi Wan finally decided to stop Anakin at all cost he didn't doubt to use Padme for that and I strongly dislike it. By the way, I have always wander what Anakin would do in his place (if it possible to be in his place). I bet he would reject to confront his master, i.e. his surrogate father. Anyway, back to the case with Padme. Obi Wan not only hides in her ship but he appears in front of Anakin without thinking how would his ex-padwan reacts knowing that he is obsessed with the Dark Side he already has killed many people, so how Obi Wan be sure that Padme is not in danger? I mean, Obi Wan is already sure that Anakin is a Sith and is ready to confront him, even kill him (he practically confirmed that to Padme). But unfortunately I think the explanation is simple: Obi Wan was just too focused in the goal to find Anakin, to seek some explanation from him so he forgot completely about any collateral damage if I can say so. He even didn't bother to say: ‘Padme didn't know I'm here. Let her go’, he simply made Anakin to let her go. I think, after the fight when he enters the ship, for the first time he felt some guilt of what happened to Padme (when he touched her face with the expression: what have we did to you, poor girl). Again, don't get me wrong, is obvious that Anakin shouldn't choke her, but again, Obi Wan was "the good guy", wasn't he? Yes, after that he felt so much guilt and desperation, and he tried to save Padme's life but it was too late.
    In some ways Obi Wan did change in OT, but he didn't change in that aspect: he was concentrated into destruction of the Sith, he waited long enough but he didn’t hesitate to make Luke to kill his own father. Yes, I accept his point of view of what happened in Mustafar, but I couldn't accept that he would extrapolate this on Luke, I mean that Luke also will accept that Anakin is not Darth Vader, so he could kill him, because in the end he is not his father. I think Obi Wan was mistaken in that and the plot of ROTJ shows it. So my point was that the real victim was Padme, but Obi Wan-of course unwillingly- helped for the birth of Darth Vader.
     
    xezene likes this.
  6. ObiWanKnowsMe

    ObiWanKnowsMe Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Sep 7, 2015
    He is a Jedi and he believes what happens to be the will of the force. I'm sure he felt heavy guilt for what happened since it was his bestfriend/brother/apprentice who spearheaded the attacks that dismantled the Republic and slaughtered the Jedi. I think him going into isolation on Tatooine was what he had to do. If he went to a highly-populated place, he would've risked being recognized. No matter where he went, no sort of lifestyle could've relieved the pain he felt from what happened in Episode 3. Obi-Wan definitely had it rough.

    Fantastic post, very well written !
     
    xezene likes this.
  7. Dorme

    Dorme Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Sep 12, 2001
    Nice work xezene!!

    Interesting take on Obi-Wan's "splitting" I had never considered... I personally had always read that scene as purposeful manipulation- not ill intended... Rather, he knew Luke wouldn't be ready to hear about Vader being his father YET (especially considering his dad's fall to the dark side and luke's potential towards that)... So he just fudges over the details a bit. And yeah, poetically, Anakin did "die", the Anakin he thought he knew at least, which Obi-Wan references in RotJ "What I told you is true... from a certain point of view".

    This post also really showcases the acting of both Ewan and Alec.. Ewan got that specific haunted stare down really well, and Alec (though he didn't even know to what extent at that point) did a great job of showing a lot of nuanced complexity when Luke asked about his dad...

    I often see Obi-Wan in both ANH and RotS as the mentor figure, so I can forget to think of how vulnerable he really is in these movies. It also makes me think of the weight of Qui-Gon on him as well... It always SHOCKED me that for Obi-Wan, his last minutes with Qui-Gon weren't him telling Obi-Wan how much he cared for him or any sweet goodbyes, it was just "Train the boy, train him... He is the chosen one". I can imagine that would kind of be... hurtful, though Qui-Gon didn't necessarily mean it to be. And considering what this task ultimately resulted in... The cost of that burden was NOT worth it. lol I think Obi-Wan must not only feel great personal failure regarding his relationship with Anakin, but also of his old mentor, Qui-Gon. And well... The fate of the ENTIRE GALAXY lol

    I really can't imagine living day to day in isolation all those years on Tatooine... It's kind of a miracle he even survived each week, each year, from a mental health POV. He is actually really emotionally strong, despite all the trauma. He's alone and all his friends are gone, dead, or monsters now... And he took part in it... And he SITS on that for what almost 20 years?? Makes me wonder a lot about his inner journey between RotS and ANH. I wonder if the rumors about a stand alone Obi-Wan film (post RotS) is released... Where exactly this narrative would take him, because I doubt it'd be about him talking walking in the dune sea for 2.5 hours (Not that THAT wouldn't be enjoyable for some of us lol)...

    Anyways thanks for sharing your thoughts, definitely pushed my thinking about this character.
     
    Sith Lord 2015, olivilo and xezene like this.
  8. AniLukeRey

    AniLukeRey Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Wow, this was an AMAZING POST. These are things I think about on a daily basis since I started watching Star Wars a few months ago. What happened to Obi-wan was SO EXTREMELY TRAGIC, I can't even process it. You posted so many amazing pictures, but there is one more that burns (no pun intended) in my mind, and I feel like it would in Obi-wans mind too...the image of Anakin after he has been dismembered and before he goes up in flame. He just looks so young and helpless (even though he is an murderous Sith Lord) and god, what an awful awful awful thing to happen to them.

    One thing that I think about is how much does older Obi-wan remember how Anakin looked before he changed? Especially looking at Luke as a teenager and young adult? I feel like his image would have been blurred a bit by Luke, because they look similar, but different, and sometimes he can almost remember how Anakin looked exactly but other times its hazy, and it doesn't matter anyway (except that it does).

    I think he would have felt so much guilt and sadness, and I think its a credit to his incredible character that he can give so much while living with such sadness, with his heart broken. I REALLY hope they make that Obi-wan movie (I think they will) about his time on Tatooine. I think him thinking Anakin was killed is his only way to cope. And I think he probably struggled with seeing Luke growing up until he fell in love with him just as he had Anakin.

    I REALLY want to know what it was like for him as a force ghost to get Anakin back. I have some headcanons about it, but of course I don't know what its like to be a force ghost lol. (Except I maintain if Obi-wan can sit on a log, Force ghosts can hug, dammit lol)
     
  9. ConservativeJedi321

    ConservativeJedi321 Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 19, 2016
    It would be like finding out your son (Arguably Brother), who you raised, was a murderer and having to be the one to strike him down

    Very Traumatic indeed.
     
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  10. Valiowk

    Valiowk Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Apr 23, 2000
    This issue is exactly what I hope an Obi-Wan spin-off film will tackle, if there is to be one. It would be criminal for a film centred upon Obi-Wan to gloss over this issue. On the other hand, it would be extremely depressing for the audience if such a film were to focus too heavily on this issue, and it might run the risk of accidentally portraying Obi-Wan in a worse light than he deserves to be considered (because we would see all his self-blame), so such a film would have to be tempered by moments when Obi-Wan is allowed to be a hero again. In short: if there is an Obi-Wan film, there should be a little action - just enough to be exciting. Necessary for a spin-off film, but if compared to the reality of Obi-Wan's situation on Tatooine, would probably portray him as more of a knight in shining armour in those few moments over the course of nineteen years than he truly was.

    But enough said about a possible Obi-Wan spin-off film. I tried to think of an answer to the questions you raised in the bolded paragraph, but I don't have any direct answers, just random thoughts about Obi-Wan's situation on Tatooine, which I figured I would share as they may indirectly answer some of those questions. Let me begin by quoting some paragraphs that really spoke to me.

    To me, the worst part of losing this entire support network is not just that it is replaced with nearly nothing, but that it is replaced with a grand total of two people on Tatooine who are aware of his true background, one of whom is clearly hostile towards him and blames him for what happened to Anakin, and the other who isn't in a position to call out her husband (at least in front of Obi-Wan) for it.

    I've always suspected whether Owen Lars knew that Anakin Skywalker had become Darth Vader. (Perhaps this question was conclusively answered in the EU but I'm simply not aware of it; if so, please let me know the answer.) While logic would dictate that the fewer people know about Anakin's turn to the dark side, the better, and that there was no reason that would demand that Obi-Wan tell the Larses the truth, Owen's hostility to Obi-Wan has always seemed to hint to me that he knew more than the version offered to the galaxy at large, that Anakin had died the same way as other Jedi during Order 66. It's hard to imagine Owen being so hostile towards Obi-Wan and so protective of Luke if he didn't blame Obi-Wan for doing a poor job as Anakin's mentor, so the only two options available seem to be either that Owen knew the truth, or he believed that Darth Vader had a grudge towards Anakin in particular because of some reason for which Obi-Wan was partially responsible. Either way, it's a dispiriting situation when the only people who can understand your situation are hostile towards you.

    By accident, I came across this chapter in a fan fiction story a few days ago, which builds wonderfully upon the book Secrets of the Jedi to describe Obi-Wan's feelings at Mustafar (and is one of the reasons why I love Obi-Wan and Siri's relationship in Secrets of the Jedi - because it paints such a wonderful contrast with Anakin and his relationship with Padmé - notwithstanding that it's been relegated to the status of Legends now): (it's a time-travel fan fic so Anakin is recalling the past here)

    He'd once thought that Obi-wan might love Siri, but he'd dismissed the thought when he'd acted so calm afterwords. If they had truly loved each other...just how much self discipline had Obi-wan possessed at the time? Anakin hadn't thought it possible to have that much self control. Then again, he'd never been one for self control. No wonder it boggled his mind.​

    His respect for his old master rose a few notches. Then his mind wandered unwittingly to Mustafar. He remembered his Master yelling at him, screaming with tears in his eyes and sweat pouring down his face...and if he'd had so much self discipline and seeing Anakin like that had driven him that far...​

    "You were my brother, Anakin! I loved you!"

    Not canon at all now, much less having anything to do with the films, but I like these paragraphs because they really bring out the toll of Anakin's turn on Obi-Wan. There are two moments in his life that bring out such an emotional response in him - the other being Qui-Gon's death - and each of them results in him subsequently dedicating a good portion of his life to a cause related to it.

    I really like how you point this out so clearly because it helps the audience get over the "from a certain point-of-view" hump that tends to bother a lot of people. :)

    These sentences broke my heart. I personally believe this is why Obi-Wan is ready to be one with the Force in that instant when he sees Luke and Leia together, face-to-face with Vader - he must be incredibly tired by now and in that moment he knows (perhaps the Force tells him so?) that he has done enough for Luke and Leia to be able to achieve their goal. He has done what he forced himself to continue living for and he can finally be at peace. (Oh, Lucas said it was because he didn't know how to continue writing Obi-Wan into the story? Let me pretend I didn't hear that. ;) )

    And now to some random thoughts I had when trying to craft a response to this thread. In my opinion, Obi-Wan is the closest anyone will ever get to the perfect Jedi Knight - I lay emphasis on the word "knight", in relation to the way they were viewed in medieval Europe. Anakin may be the Chosen One, Yoda and Mace Windu may be more powerful Jedi, but none of them can exemplify what it means to be a Jedi Knight the way Obi-Wan does (regardless of however one regards Obi-Wan's performance as a Master to a Padawan). And what is remarkable is that Obi-Wan has no clue of this whatsoever - as Matthew Stover put it in the novelisation to RotS:

    It is characteristic of Obi-Wan that he is entirely unaware of this.​

    Inside, he still feels like a Padawan.​

    When thinking about Obi-Wan's time on Tatooine earlier today, the following analogy came to me, imperfect as it is: Lancelot's period of madness after the sin he commits with Elaine. There was a time when Lancelot could have been the perfect knight; after that night, it is never to be again. Anakin's turn is the same kind of watershed - there was a time when Obi-Wan would, with time, have become the perfect Jedi Knight, but with Anakin's turn, that will never come to pass. Lancelot receives divine punishment; with Obi-Wan, being on Tatooine to keep an eye on Luke is, to a certain extent, a voluntary punishment. When Lancelot recovers from his madness, he is still a great knight, but it is clear that he will never recover the full greatness of the past, in the same way that you mention Obi-Wan never recovers from his experience during the events of RotS.

    Many scenes of Obi-Wan in RotS are heartbreaking; if I may be permitted to add two to the pictures above, I would suggest Obi-Wan's tired expression when he uses the Force to wave the door shut on board Padmé's spaceship, and the scene of him wearing his hood when he passes baby Luke to Owen and Beru. The latter doesn't actually show trauma and depression, but for me, it is the most heartbreaking scene in the entirety of the saga because of what it is supposed to allude to. Many years ago, I used an avatar based on that scene as my instant messaging avatar (it was one of the avatars made for general use when the JC Forums was still running on Snowboards and only a limited set of avatars were available)

    [​IMG]

    and a friend of mine who is a fellow Star Wars fan but who did not recognise the avatar at first glance said, "I thought that was Jesus." It hurts so much because in that moment Obi-Wan is as close to perfect as can ever be, and he will never be again. It is painful to watch Obi-Wan in ANH, as you mention, considerably less amiable and energetic than his younger self, because he has been changed, and Obi-Wan of old is gone forever. As Dorme mentioned above, kudos to both Ewan and Sir Alec Guinness for managing to do their parts so wonderfully that we can believe it is the same person and the contrast hurts all the more because of it.

    Coming back to your questions in bold, I think we're looking at something that this type of literature doesn't really know how to handle well, if the way Lancelot was handled is in any way a fair indication. (By far not the best student of literature here, so if anyone knows good examples to disprove my hypothesis, please let me know.) Of course there are real life cases that one could use as reference, but that would be looking from the matter from a slightly different angle.
     
  11. xezene

    xezene Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 6, 2016
    Great posts everyone! After more thinking about Obi-Wan and his possible ruminations, this floated into my mind:

    Things Obi-Wan has to think about on Tatooine:
    • Count Dooku told me three years before the end what the grand Sith plan was. He told me that Palpatine was the Sith Lord. I didn’t listen. We could have stopped it then if we’d only believed him. We didn’t.
    • I saw the Kamino facilities myself. I was the first Jedi there. I saw the clones getting raised and trained. The same clones that killed the Jedi. The same clones that killed my friends. All the bloodshed that followed. All just an elaborate orchestration that ended in death for the light. I could have stopped it, I could have protested to the council. I didn’t.
    • Every time I see a stormtrooper around here, I think of those clone troopers I fought with and cared about. My friends and my brothers. We were fighting for freedom. Now they are fighting against freedom. And they destroyed the only family I ever knew.
    • Why did the other Jedi die, and I survive? Why was it me that survived, and not someone else? What if I hadn’t been assigned to Utapau? What if it had been someone else? What if I had been at the temple? Could I have stopped Anakin, reasoned with him, talked him out of it?
    • I trained Darth Vader.
    • I could have stopped Darth Vader for good. I didn’t.
    • This dusty, sandy planet. I remember last time I was here. We met a young boy. I was with Qui-Gon… It was Anakin…
    • I promised Qui-Gon to train the boy. Maybe I shouldn’t have? Did I push the Council into it? Yoda objected to it. I even objected to it! But Anakin, my brother, my friend… he had such promise. And I had a promise to keep. Did I fail my promise? Did I train him right? Would Qui-Gon have done better?
    • I am Ben now. I was Obi-Wan Kenobi. I was a Jedi once. Now, it hurts too much to remember. Maybe Obi-Wan did die. Now Ben remains.
    • What if our time to act never comes? What if Luke never shows an interest to learn the ways of the Force? I wonder if there’s a chance to really change things at this point. I guess it’s up to the will of the Force.
    Just speculation… but this all seems reasonable to think. One could go on, but clearly anyone can see Obi-Wan’s been through so much it’s hard to imagine the rumination he does. He rehashes the past a lot to Luke, and I think at some point it did become a habit for him to look back, either to the good (Jedi) or the bad (end of Anakin). I should say, Obi-Wan does show surprising ease and familiarity with bars… perhaps he has reason to? Making it down to Anchorage or Mos Eisley once in a while for a little drink… I know that’s generally said as a joke, but hey, after all he’s been through, I can see it seriously too.
     
  12. xezene

    xezene Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 6, 2016
    [​IMG]

    It gets me how Obi-Wan slowly approaches Vader in the Death Star and stops, looking at him with almost a stunned expression... like 'this is really you now... oh my god.' He definitely looks haunted for a moment before the fight. And to see his old age and lack of practice depreciating his lightsaber skills... it's kind of charming yet tragic his little twirl he does... reminiscent of younger, more energetic years for Obi-Wan. I wonder if he's thought about this fight for years. Or if Obi-Wan knew he would die fighting Vader, perhaps he felt it was his time. Interesting things to speculate on...

    Also, whether he should beat himself that much about things, I don't know... I mean, I don't think it was all Obi-Wan's fault at all, but he did play a role, and I think it's only natural for him to be filled with regret, guilt, and remorse. And he doesn't exactly have a great support network to help him feel better about himself and talk about his feelings, so I think he just blames himself. Just goes to show how much of the proper, 'good' and selfless Jedi Obi-Wan was, he'd rather blame himself than blame Qui-Gon, Yoda, or Anakin. Wow. I don't believe that man ever learned selfishness.
     
  13. jaex

    jaex Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Dec 31, 2015
    Yeah, it’s pretty cold, isn’t it? I’m sure Obi-Wan thinks he’s only doing what needs to be done, but the fact is, he is trying to send Luke to kill his own father, without even telling him that. It would be a big life-and-death decision for Luke to make, and Obi-Wan doesn’t give him all the relevant information he would need to make an informed decision. I think Obi-Wan is genuinely convinced that Vader needs to die and there’s no other way, and maybe he thinks it would be best to not let Luke know that he would be guilty of patricide. Still, I think there’s definitely a ruthless streak to Obi-Wan.

    Yep. I don’t want to sound like I’m blaming Obi-Wan for Anakin’s fall, there was a lot going on and it obviously wasn’t Obi-Wan’s fault. But the thing for me about Anakin’s fall is that he came close to not falling at all. Things could have gone differently for him. Sometimes I wonder how Anakin’s life would have turned out if Qui-Gon had lived and trained Anakin instead of Obi-Wan. I think they would have been better suited as a master-apprentice pair, and Qui-Gon would have found it easier to fill the role Anakin would have wanted his Jedi master to fill, and that would have made it less easy for Palpatine to swoop in and play the nice mentor/father-figure role and manipulate Anakin.

    That doesn’t mean that Obi-Wan is to blame for what happened, of course. I think he did the best he could as Anakin’s teacher, and he also was a very young person put in a very difficult situation when he took up Anakin as his padawan. I don’t think Obi-Wan was ready for an apprentice then, and definitely not an apprentice as unusual and challenging as Anakin was. It’s not Obi-Wan’s fault, but it’s one of those things in Anakin’s life that could have happened differently and the outcome might have been different. I would be surprised if Obi-Wan didn’t think about such things during his lonely years on Tatooine.
     
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  14. Tonyg

    Tonyg Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 16, 2016

    As I said above everyone made mistakes in ROTS, after all the Sith won and that means that the clouds of the Dark Side entered in almost everyone's mind (except in Padme's mind and that's why she died, after all). I'm completely sure that a so special apprentice as Anakin needed a very atypical master, as Qui Gon, for example. It doesn’t mean that Obi Wan was bad master, it means that maybe Anakin had a chance to escape that fate if Qui Go has survived… (just a chance of course, nothing more).
    But Obi Wan was the perfect Jedi, was an exceptional friend, something like biggest brother for Anakin and I'm sure that Anakin also loved him. That's why after the events of Mustafar he hated him so much... But my point was that the survived Jedi never learned one simple lesson: you cannot act like Sith no matter what the goal is. The young Luke teaches them that lesson. The worst mistake of Obi Wan was that he lost his hope for Anakin and that 'gave' him the motivation to go to Mustafar and even worst was the fact that he didn't think enough how his actions could reflect on Padme's fate. I have always wondered if (during the Tattoine period) he felt some guilt for her, too.
     
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  15. ezekiel22x

    ezekiel22x Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 9, 2002
    Wow, nicely done. Reemphasizes for me the manner in which Star Wars has explored human frailty, especially with Episodes I-III. For me this element has been most key in making Star Wars "real" and "lived-in."
     
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  16. ChefCurryWindu

    ChefCurryWindu Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Dec 18, 2015
    Excellent analysis and a well written post xezene! Can't help but feel for Obi-Wan: like you and others have said, for Obi-Wan, it must have been a punch in the gut, shocking, and life changing moment when he saw the recording of Anakin-his student, best friend, and basically adopted son, slaughtering his defacto family back in the Temple, and kneeling before Sidious as Darth Vader. Even 19 years later when talking to Luke he still is affected heavily by Anakin's actions and seeing what those actions did to his life, Anakin's, the Jedi, Padme, and the rest of the galaxy.

    I posted this before in another thread but I think this gif clues us in on Obi Wan's emotions right before they duel on Mustafar:

    [​IMG]

    It seems that before he flew to Mustafar, Obi-Wan could not believe what he saw and heard on the recordings back at the temple. But after witnessing Anakin force choking Padme, and hearing Anakin state to him, "Don't make me kill you" and "I have brought peace and justice to my new empire!", Obi-Wan finally saw and heard in person that Anakin has indeed been twisted and corrupted into Darth Vader. The boy he had trained as Yoda had told him, was no more, but an agent of the dark side, who had betrayed everything he stood for in hopes of achieving greater power. There is no choice left, but to duel his former apprentice and brother.
     
  17. Valiowk

    Valiowk Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Apr 23, 2000
    I was rewatching parts of ANH involving Obi-Wan yesterday, and it occurred to me that Obi-Wan's amiability at different times can roughly be separated into three categories:
    • everyday affairs, where he is pretty much as friendly as Obi-Wan in the PT; the prime example being the warmth with which he says "Hello there" when Luke first encounters him in ANH
    • affairs related to the Jedi order, where he is comfortable speaking about them but without that warmth. My guess is that if someone were to speak to him about the Empire (but not the Emperor or Darth Vader), his conversation would also fall into this category.
    • affairs related to Anakin's turn to the dark side, where he clams up and clearly would prefer not to speak about the issue if unnecessary.
    My guess is that he goes from being willing to speak about everything on an equal basis to having these strong preferences over time as a coping mechanism during interaction with others. I think ordinary people on Tatooine might just see an Obi-Wan who is pretty much as friendly as in the PT, except that he seems to have a few quirks (lives in solitude, has a reason for being on Tatooine that no one can figure out etc.), and even in those moments when he has to deal with issues related to the Empire, as long as the topics of Palpatine or Vader don't arise, outsiders would probably just assume that he's serious for roughly the same reasons as everyone else. But now I really wonder how much of Anakin's turn to the dark side he got around to dealing with if his instinctive reaction is to clam up the moment he has to speak about it - it's no wonder that he might just grab at the explanation Yoda gave just so that he can give the questioner an answer. The only person who is really in a place to talk to Obi-Wan about Anakin's turn is Qui-Gon, who is now a Force ghost and consequently not exactly in the best position to force him to talk it out. (Not sure if Obi-Wan ever met up with Yoda in all those years, hm...)

    In the past, I used to think that Obi-Wan had surely understood that Anakin, more than anybody else, is responsible for his own turn to the dark side and had forgiven himself for Anakin's turn over the course of those nineteen years - a very long time, but now I'm starting to wonder if he actually had. If he hadn't yet, it's hard to imagine him being in the correct state of mind to give Luke the best advice as to how to deal with Vader, because he would still be stuck in the mentality from RotS, where the only way to resolve the situation is to kill Anakin. On the other hand, since he's able to talk about the Jedi order more freely, the flaws of the Jedi order would be something he would be better able to come to terms with and maybe that's reflected in the way he allows Luke to be raised as a child and guided to be a Jedi.

    One wonders if any of the discussion in this thread is applicable to Master Yoda. :p

    P.S. On a separate note, if Obi-Wan says "Obi-Wan? Now that's a name I've not heard in a long time.", then what does Qui-Gon call him when they're communing? ;) It's hard to imagine Qui-Gon calling him Ben the way others who know his old name might be willing to - for them it's a matter of getting used to saying "Ben" so that they don't accidentally blow his cover, but Qui-Gon is a Force ghost so that argument doesn't apply. Does Qui-Gon call him "Padawan"? :p
     
  18. ConservativeJedi321

    ConservativeJedi321 Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 19, 2016
    I think he might just call him "My former Padawan" that's how I always pictured it. And I think force ghosts are less hear, and more thought that's how I interpret it anyways.:p

    I imagine Yoda was at least as traumatized as Obi-Wan if not more. I explained it a bit in the Yoda fan Club thread but basically he saw 900 years, his whole life's work be cut down in a manner of days. He just was better at hiding it I think, as befitting the Grand Master of the Jedi Order.
     
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  19. MatthewZ

    MatthewZ Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Sep 21, 2003
    No one ever said the life of a Jedi would be easy.
     
  20. Jedimaster_Darklight

    Jedimaster_Darklight Jedi Grand Master star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Threads like this is the reason why I love coming to this board. There's so much gold available, so much visible passion toward a mutual interest.

    Anyway, this was a really good read! :ben:
     
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  21. xezene

    xezene Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 6, 2016
    Yes, I believe Yoda faced real emotional (and philosophical) consequences for everything that follows. It's kind of strange -- although I think Obi-Wan is more socially adjusted and so on, he's a very by-the-book kind of Jedi and although you can tell he cares inside, I always got the feeling that Yoda had a warmer, more emotional, more empathic side to him than Obi-Wan. It may not seem so at first because he can be quite intellectual-sounding, but I really think this is the case. He seems really emotionally distraught, much more so than Mace or Obi-Wan, about Dooku's betrayal of the Jedi -- and I know Yoda trained Dooku as a Jedi, but I think it goes beyond that. Clearly Obi-Wan and the other Jedi are affected emotionally by the loss of the Jedi Order, but Yoda appears emotionally devastated (as contrasted with Obi-Wan, who I believe slowly just slides into a kind of wordless depression*). As we see, Yoda exhibits many subtle hints of sensitivity. He's probably the only Jedi who has a playful sense of humor, who is self-aware of the Jedi's mistakes and errors, and who enjoys the company of children. In many ways I wish Yoda had shown this side to Anakin more. One gets the sense that Yoda, like the rest of the council, kind of held Anakin at arm's length and treated him as 'Jedi business' rather than as a friend.

    In my view, Yoda is a complex character who is very interesting, I think, because of his softer side sort of getting involved. Yoda expresses the strongest disapproval of the war effort at the end of Attack of the Clones. Yet I wonder if Yoda blames himself a lot, or at least challenges his own views a lot, perhaps even more than Obi-Wan, because Yoda exhibits some contradictory behaviors, all culminating in Yoda's: "Failed, I have." Yoda expresses disapproval of the war effort yet helped bring the clones to Geonosis. Yoda tells Anakin not to miss people but, when faced with actual sorrow and loss, admits to the Wookies he will miss them. Yoda knows that Obi-Wan needs to be the one to fight Anakin, yet he is reluctant to let Obi-Wan look at the security recordings. Some of this reluctance (and/or regret) to put his students through pain or suffering seems to fly a little in the face of Yoda's own view of what a Jedi should be. Yoda wants to help the Jedi, so he brings the clones, even though he says it is awful that the Clone Wars have began. Yoda wants to help Anakin, so he tries to help him distance himself from his attachments, yet Yoda himself knows he can feel those things too when he faces it. Yoda wants to help Obi-Wan not feel as much pain, so he tries to tell him not to look at the security recordings, yet he knows that Obi-Wan is going to have to find out at some point. One gets the impression of someone who cares deeply for his students and tries to help them with his wisdom, but when faced with the actual circumstance, realizes the emotional reality of it -- that he himself feels.

    You can even see this with Luke. I think Yoda was a little emotionally attached (hehe) to Luke at the end. He trains Luke to confront Vader, but when Luke wants to, Yoda is reluctant to because he doesn't want Luke to suffer or to throw away everything he's learned. When Luke gets back and asks about Vader's revelation, Yoda tries to avoid the question entirely (similar, it seems, to his behavior with Obi-Wan and the recordings). We hear significant sorrow from Yoda when he says, "Not ready for the burden were you." We see in this little contradictory green guy a bunch of wisdom, that can seem detached and seemingly work just fine, but then when the reality comes, Yoda's emotions tell him something different. I've realized in writing this, I've touched the tip of the iceberg here with Yoda's psychology (probably rarely explored in this way), so others can feel free to add to this.

    Getting back to trauma of the Clone Wars and Anakin on Yoda, I do think it impacted him a lot. He seems to feel that on Dagobah he needs to rethink everything. He moves from the ivory towers of a city-planet with no life, to a mud-hut on a planet completely teeming with life and no people. That seems pretty significant (and symbolic) to me. We see someone who perhaps feels that he has lost contact with the Living Force, in Qui-Gon's terms. He goes to Dagobah to reconnect with that. We see his training with Luke is far less formal than in the prequels, and even a little more emotionally warm. He seems to have learnt a lot from his painful lessons during the prequel era (and even before) on Coruscant. He scales down -- Yoda doesn't start another Jedi Academy with multiple students, on some other planet with cities. No, he does a one-to-one, personal, naturalistic approach with Luke. I think that's the result of a changed man. Reconnecting with the natural, realizing that quality is greater than quantity of students. And I would argue Luke was his greatest ever student. (Writing that makes me a tad emotional... ah Yoda). Luke was his greatest acheivement. And, from my perspective, when you hear Yoda say, "The Force is strong in your family. Pass on what you've learned," I personally have always taken that as Yoda letting Luke know he should pass this on perhaps to his own family someday -- maybe Yoda has had some thinking over the effects of Anakin's upbringing on him? Perhaps he's realized the ideal Jedi should neither be raised in a sterile city academy nor ripped from their family at an older age, but instead are trained amongst the normal populace. Not removed as in some ivory tower. Just a thought. Anyway, I think it's clear that without Yoda's profound wisdom and heart of the OT, we don't get Luke's path towards ultimate Jedihood at the end of ROTJ. And I think that OT Yoda is a direct result of the rethink Yoda had about his life and Jedi-hood after PT Yoda.

    *- I would also add that I think a contrast between Obi-Wan and Yoda is that Yoda's beliefs and attitude seems to change --arguably for the better -- in the OT. I think this is a contrast to Obi-Wan, he seems to have really settled down and hasn't changed his view on what a Jedi is or what a Jedi does. As a result of this lack of evolution, I think Obi-Wan has probably declined in mental health from PT to OT relative to Yoda.
     
  22. Valiowk

    Valiowk Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Apr 23, 2000
    xezene, seeing your post in this thread about Yoda reminded me of a question that came to mind yesterday but which I forgot to bring up earlier. To Obi-Wan, his greatest failure is training Anakin. The fall of the Jedi Order due to its entrenchment in certain ways also has an impact on him, but he was not the Grand Master, and therefore, I believe, does not take upon himself the greatest part of the blame for the fall of the Jedi Order. Yoda, on the other hand, was Grand Master, but did not play the greatest part in training Anakin, and hence I believe that for Yoda, he sees his main failure as allowing the Jedi Order to proceed along the path it did, which led to the circumstances that would allow Palpatine to sway Anakin to the dark side. His failure to directly help Anakin open up is a smaller one.

    The above being the case, the main issues that Yoda and Obi-Wan dwell upon during their periods in hiding should be slightly different. If Obi-Wan is haunted by Anakin's turn to the extent that it becomes the one issue he never truly gets over, but he is able to come to a better conclusion about the mistakes of the Jedi Order, then why is it that in ESB, Obi-Wan's and Yoda's opinions seem very similar? One would expect that they would have slightly contrasting points-of-view that would enable each to point out lapses in the other's thinking. Of course, I understand that this is not something that ESB wants to focus on, but for instance, why is it both of them seem to have come to better conclusions about the mistakes of the Jedi Order, but still seem fixated on the notion that the only way out is Vader's death?

    (Apologies if this question may make the thread go slightly off topic - the question does seem to focus more on Yoda than Obi-Wan.)
     
  23. xezene

    xezene Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Jan 6, 2016
    No worries! Good post and I agree with a great deal of it, especially the first paragraph. I think there's enough room for a little discussion about Yoda in this thread. :p

    I think they do develop in slightly different ways, but there's a difference in nuance and personality I think. It's not so much that their fundamental views change as much as their personalities deal with the circumstance in different ways. Yoda goes full-on nature-man, Zen-Master-in-the-mountains with it. He doesn't train on the go, he parks it on Dagobah and makes use of the training there. That's a contrast to Obi-Wan who is more of a doer; once Obi-Wan meets Luke, it's all teaching-on-the-fly, totally Obi-Wan's style. Yoda says: no, time for learning is here, action comes after. Regarding their takes on Jedi philosophy, well, I think there is a slight difference. Yoda, as always, is very vague and reluctant about the whole kill-Vader thing. It seems that he thinks that might be what it comes down to, but you get the impression that Yoda is letting Luke find his own path, perhaps one that could find a solution without Vader's death. Because Yoda and Anakin's falling out wasn't as personal, I don't think Yoda has as much of an emotional reason to directly say, "Kill Vader." However, I would agree that if you read between the lines, Yoda is sort of implying that death-to-Vader may be the only way to go. However, you also get a sense that Yoda is more concerned with Luke not becoming like Anakin. So, what does that mean? On top of that, Yoda exhibits more of a newfound pacifistic vibe than Obi-Wan in instructing Luke. So what does that mean for dealing with Vader? In such a way Yoda leaves it a bit vague.

    As for Obi-Wan, he's much more direct. He seems to be bitter and disappointed with Anakin to the point of directly telling Luke that if Luke doesn't kill Vader, it's absolutely over. In fact, both Jedi seem very interested in getting Luke to kill the Emperor, which I understand, but I find it interesting how Luke shows next to no interest in actually doing that. For Luke, it's strictly personal. He wasn't raised in the Jedi machine, he wasn't brought into this religious order from birth, he has less of a stake. Luke's story reminds me of the story of Hui-neng, who became an enlightened Zen master with almost no training. He just found the answer himself. I think Luke is like that. Luke finds his own way to Jedi-enlightenment, beyond the constraints of Obi-Wan and Yoda.

    Overall, though, back to the Obi-Wan/Yoda contrast, I believe there is some contrast, but more on emphasis than anything else. They are still both Jedi of the old Order. Yoda seems to have harkened back to the real meat-and-potatoes of Jedi training and wisdom, while Obi-Wan sort of goes along for the ride the way he would usually train Jedi as in the old Order. I think Yoda puts more emphasis on spirituality and the Living Force compared to his old ways. Overall both seem complicit in killing Vader -- Obi-Wan is all for it, and Yoda wouldn't complain probably. But of the two, I am betting Yoda was more at peace with Luke redeeming Vader. That seems more in line with Yoda's broadening perspective. While Obi-Wan probably had to adjust to that quite a bit (he's separated Anakin into two personas; Yoda did it as a matter of Jedi orthodoxy and convenience, while I think Obi-Wan really took that to heart). Overall, I would say that both Yoda and Obi-Wan are still both of the old Jedi way, but Yoda has gotten a little more in touch with the Force and is a bit more open to many different paths. Obi-Wan on the other hand seems more personally, rather than philosophically, shaped by the past, and as such is not as open to alternatives.
     
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  24. Valiowk

    Valiowk Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Apr 23, 2000
    Great reply - thanks! I like this way of thinking. :)
     
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  25. Seagoat

    Seagoat PT and Music Section Detective Potato star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jan 25, 2013
    In short: Alec Guiness and Ewan McGregor are AMAZING actors