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Saga The Chosen Post: The Prophecy's Importance, Palpatine's Plan To Escape It, & Why Mace Lost the Duel

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Darth Nerdling, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. Arawn_Fenn

    Arawn_Fenn Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Wrong. Their complementary nature is expressed explicitly in his treatment: "the complementarity of yang and yin"
    ( The Masks of God: Oriental Mythology, p516 ).

    He merely accurately reports the fact that the Tao Te Ching refers to the yin as "negative" and the yang as "positive". Kill-the-messenger tactics achieve nothing here. Campbell does not need to distort anything about Taoism - and it would be somewhat pointless for him to do so as he footnotes his source. What "archetype" do you imagine he is "forcing" Taoism into? In order to merely place it in a loose grouping of Eastern philosophies as he does, no particular forcing is required.

    So the various scholars concerned with "unifying themes of religious thought" are all kidding themselves? We need not take "unifying" to mean "literally all-encompassing". It is valid to observe similarities.
     
  2. only one kenobi

    only one kenobi Jedi Master star 4

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    Nov 18, 2012

    Part quoting again, I see; and even part-quoting yourself and even quotes you have made previously of authors.
     
  3. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001
    "The dark side is always there. It is experienced daily by people. It is like a huge cancer, alive, festering—both a reminder of a moral state and, at the same time, symptom and symbol of a very sick society."

    --George Lucas, “The Mythology of Star Wars,” Joseph Campbell and the Power of Myth DVD, 2001

    What Lucas is saying is that life is defined by both the good and noble things about life such as compassion, charity, selflessness and love. Their opposite is the terrible aspects of life such as greed, jealousy, selfishness, hatred and indifference. Look at "THX-1138", which takes away a lot of what makes life what it is. That is not a balanced world. That is a breakdown of society. Lucas believes that a balance is needed to function even as screwed up as the real world is.
     
  4. only one kenobi

    only one kenobi Jedi Master star 4

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    Nov 18, 2012

    Well, to me what you quoted Lucas as saying appears to argue exactly the opposite of what you are arguing here. He says that this 'darkside' is a "....symptom and symbol of a very sick society". A sick society is not a balanced society. A "..huge cancer...festering..." does not conjure images of a healthy, balanced state. He seems to be arguing that the darkside needs to be eradicated in order for a society not to be sick.
     
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  5. Darth Maaliss

    Darth Maaliss Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Dec 19, 2014
    On a personal level I believe that we will only have a balanced society once injustice et al is completely eradicated. (But thats because of my personal faith).

    On a Star Wars Universe point of view I wonder how Lucas could envision a society with influence from the darkside. We know that certain locations are predominantly strong in the darkside naturally and therefore the darkside will always be there. As such and given a society where there the have and have nots and the imperfect "human" condition, there will always be ones who will be drawn to the darkside either intentionally or unintentionally. A balanced society is unlikely to ever happen in those circumstances.
     
  6. only one kenobi

    only one kenobi Jedi Master star 4

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    Nov 18, 2012
    I don't want to swerve too far off course, but you have, here, hinted at a 'larger view' of one of the reasons that I find the deistic/interventist 'The Force did it' post-PT emphasis such a turn off.

    You used the word "naturally" with regards to the darkside and thence move onto the "have and have nots" which is to be related to "the imperfect "human" condition"....which in the final analysis means that "A balanced society is unlikely to ever happen in those circumstances."

    This is a lie that has been told for some 3000 years now in what we know as "Western civilisation" . We are inculcated with such ideas - that there is a 'natural order', that it is the result of the 'natural state of humanity'. The latter ignores that the human behaviour we see is the result of the demands and drivers of that society and that we are educated within and for the purpose of that model. The former enforces a rightful 'place' for people within that society and ensures that any who have 'earned' their 'betterment' understand to play along with that order.

    It is so deeply ingrained that we come to the point where an argument is made which is essentially 'wouldn't you rather live in this encroaching but safe police state than that dangerous failed police state?' A one or the other argument. That is why the histories we are taught in school are through the eyes of Kings and Lords, conquerers and beneficient regal 'defenders', and through the prism of 'nation states'.

    So, when a story that subverted these messages so thoroughly comes along (ie at the end of ROTJ Luke rejects his expectation as ubermensch, as the all-powerful destroyer of the ubermensch enemy and fights instead a personal battle - and where the rebels themselves defeat the might of the Empire) ..... well, to have that then sewn up into the simplistic 'hand of a greater being' (The Force did it) and that the destruction of the Emperor was the key; that undermines two vital, subversive aspects of the ending of ROTJ, in my opinion.
     
  7. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001

    "I would like to see our society mature, and become more rational and more knowledge-based, less emotion-based. I'd like to see education play a larger role in our daily lives, have people come to a larger understanding—a “bigger picture” understanding—of how we fit into the world, and how we fit into the universe. Not necessarily thinking of ourselves, but thinking of others.

    Whether we're going to accomplish this, I'm not sure. Obviously, people have a lot of different dreams of where America should be, and where it should fit into things. Obviously, very few of them are compatible, and very few of them are very compatible with the laws of nature. Human nature means battling constantly between being completely self-absorbed and trying to be a communal creature. Nature makes you a communal creature. The ultimate single-minded, self-centered creature is a cancer cell. And mostly, we're not made up of cancer cells.

    If you put that notion on a larger scale, you have to understand that it's a very cooperative world, not only with the environment, but with our fellow human beings. If you do not cooperate, if you do not work together to keep the entire organism going, the whole thing dies, and everybody dies with it. That's a law of nature, and it's existed forever. We're one of the very few creatures that has a choice, and can intellectualize the process.

    Most organisms either adapt and become part of the system, or get wiped out. The only thing we have to adapt to the system with is our brain. If we don't use it, and we don't adapt fast enough, we won't survive."

    --George Lucas, Academy of Achievement Interview, 1999


    Cancer cells exist within us, but our immune system manages to deal with them so that we remain healthy. At least until a point comes where our immune system fails to recognize those cells as cancerous and thus we become ill. Thus the light of the Force is that which keep the dark, which is the cancer in check. But the Force becomes unbalanced because one cancer cell got away and became the mass of tissue that spreads throughout the body. Palpatine is that cancer cell even though there are other dark side agents out there, he is the cancer that is not kept in check whereas the others are. Anakin winds up being the scalpel/cancer treatment that will excise the cancer cells and restore the Force back into balance/remission.
     
  8. Darth Maaliss

    Darth Maaliss Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Dec 19, 2014
    Maybe this would be better discussed in another thread/forum etc, but I will respond here to this post.

    There is really a dual answer to this post interms of my perceptions of the world around us and my perceptions interms of the Star Wars EU.

    In "real life" I do believe that a balanced society is possible, but only through the elimination of evil. The judgement of what that evil is and how it is to be eliminated isn't left up to us however but can only be done by the ultimate source of good. (PS. Yes, I am one of Jehovah's Witnesses and as such have quite definite views on this).But hey, if you want to have a philosophical/religious debate it would may be better doing that by means of PMs.

    As for the Star Wars EU, I like you aren't a big fan of the "Force did it". I'm very much a person who thought of the Force as an impersonal thing that could be channeled, albeit something having a "light" and "dark" side.

    Interms of the "natural" statement that I made, I suppose I could have used a better way to explain. I was simply alluding to the fact that the force has two sides. It isn't a neutral thing that becomes light or dark depending on how its used, in the EU both Yoda and Darth Plagueis strongly believe that the light and dark side have different make-ups. As the force will always be there, so will the light side and the dark side always be there.

    Couple that with ambition, love, greed, injustice, compassion et al and there will always be force sensitives who will attune themselves to one or the other side. Its in terms of that that I feel there is balance in the Star Wars EU.

    darth-sinister You make an interesting point. Darth Sidious in drawing so much power could have been that cancerous growth. However, is it equally possible that the Jedi could become a cancerous growth by holding so much sway on their side of the force and by seeking out and getting rid of dark side users? If you look at the EU, there has always been this seesawing between the Jedi and the Sith holding sway. (Yes, I know that it is part of the Sith makeup to conquer and draw power, but is part of their hatred a result of Jedi crusades against them in the past and as a result we see this constant tit-for-tat throughout history?)
     
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  9. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    The constant struggle in the old EU was reflective of the basic nature of life which is that good and evil fight. The Sith hate the Jedi for opposing the idea that they should rule by divine right due to their powers. But even after Anakin has killed Palpatine, there were still Sith in the universe. Darth Kryat who was hidden away for years. The lost Sith tribes that lived out in the Unknown Regions. Exar Kun's ghost. The balance and imbalance was centered around a particular time and series of events which lead to the film era and how the story went from there. This shows that it was not just their mere presence, but the confluence of events that started with Darth Bane and ended with Darth Sidious that lead to the imbalance. The blurring of the lines between good and evil, and manipulating the people into giving up their power, rather than having it taken from them, is what causes the imbalance. In "Knights Of The Old Republic", the Darth Bane books and in "Legacy", the Sith just take what they want and leave the rest. In the PT, Palpatine has it all handed to him through a climate of fear, greed and indifference.
     
  10. Darth Maaliss

    Darth Maaliss Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Dec 19, 2014
    Maybe this should be a question for another thread, but, could the Jedi therefore cause an inbalance that required correcting?
     
  11. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Chosen One star 7

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    Jun 8, 2006
    @Steven Hocking While I don't wholly agree with your stances, I must commend you for some thoughtful and interesting posts, sir. A joy to read. =D=
     
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  12. Darth Maaliss

    Darth Maaliss Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Dec 19, 2014
    If everyone agreed with everyone in everything there wouldn't be anything to debate would there? :p
     
  13. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Chosen One star 7

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    Jun 8, 2006
    No, but Cushy isn't one for debating anyhow. I much prefer civil discussion. :)
     
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  14. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001
    If they were the problem, Lucas would have said that Anakin balances the Force by eliminating both the Jedi and the Sith. The only way the Jedi would cause that problem is if they all fell to the dark side and did what the Sith did to cause the imbalance.
     
  15. Darth Maaliss

    Darth Maaliss Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Dec 19, 2014
    So it is only the Dark Side that can cause an imbalance? Doesn't seem very balanced. :)

    It just seems strange that only the Sith could effect the equilibrium.
     
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  16. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Chosen One star 7

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    Jun 8, 2006
    I don't believe we'll know what balance is till evil is demolished. However, Cushy does think it's equally possible the Jedi are casual to the imbalance because they are stagnant and arrogant and do many of the same things they declare 'dark' without consequence and even justify it. Not very different from the Sith at all from what I see.
     
  17. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001

    The Jedi do not cause the imbalance because they work together with the Senate and the Republic. They serve the Senate and the Chancellor, but they do so in favor of democracy. The Jedi Order long ago swore an oath to not control the Republic and foist their powers upon the people. They do what they do when asked and only when asked. Then came a Jedi Knight who discovered that fear, anger and hate granted him great power. He came to believe that the Jedi should use their powers to rule, but the Council rejected this notion and from that came the Sith. But the Sith never caused an imbalance during the previous war because they took control and the Jedi and the remnants of the Republic fought to take it back. Once the war ended, control was restored to the way it was.

    The Sith are the natural enemy of the Jedi. As George Lucas describes it, the Sith were once in control of the galaxy 1000 years in the past. Unfortunately, the Sith's hunger for conquest got the better of them-so many Sith Lords were vying for ultimate control that it led to infighting among their ranks. Such internecine struggles were exploited by the Jedi Knights of the era, and they were able to turn the tide and defeat the Sith.

    --Star Wars Insider, issue 78; page 60

    "The Sith are the archenemies of the Jedi," George Lucas explained, "and for a long time, they ruled the universe until the Jedi came along and got rid of them."

    --George Lucas, Star Wars Insider, issue 78; page 80


    When Palpatine comes along, he is manipulating everyone to give him the power and the right to rule, which in turn causes the imbalance.

    "This idea of a democracy being given up and in many cases being given up in a time of crisis, you see it throughout history whether it's Julius Caesar, or Napoleon, or Adolf Hitler, you see these democracies under a lot of pressure, in a crisis situation, who end up giving up a lot of the freedoms they have and a lot of the checks and balances to somebody with a strong authority to help get them through the crisis. It's not the first time a politician has created a war to try to stay in office."

    --George Lucas, Lenoard Maltin interview, 1999.


    One of the larger issues that surfaced in the telling of Anakin's fall to the dark side and his rise to becoming a corrupt figure was that of the fall
    of democracy at the hands of the very people who initially fought oppression.

    "You have the personal issue of Anakin and his turn to the dark side, but then the children later bring him back to being a human being," Lucas says. "But the larger issue is that you've given up your democracy, and that the bad guys never took it -- it was handed to them. That theme was there 30 years ago which came out of the Vietnam War and Nixon wanting to change the rules so he could get a third term.

    I'm a big history buff and I was really into Caesar at the time," Lucas recalls. "I always wanted to know why the Roman Senate gave Caesar's nephew a dictatorship after they had gotten rid of Caesar. Why after the revolution in France did they create an Emperor? Why did the Germans after they had a Democracy after World War I, turn it into a dictatorship? Those were my initial questions 30 years ago."

    --George Lucas, Star Wars Homing Beacon #142


    The imbalance comes when Palpatine does what he did...

    "If good and evil are mixed things become blurred - there is nothing between good and evil, everything is gray. In each of us we to have balance these emotions, and in the Star Wars saga the most important point is balance, balance between everything. It is dangerous to lose this. In The Phantom Menace one of the Jedi Council already knows the balance of the Force is starting to slip, and will slip further. It is obvious to this person that the Sith are going to destroy this balance. On the other hand a prediction which is referred to states someone will replace the balance in the future. At the right time a balance may again be created, but presently it is being eroded by dark forces."

    --George Lucas, Cut Magazine interview, 1999.
     
  18. Darth Maaliss

    Darth Maaliss Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Dec 19, 2014
    And of course democracy is the great balancing power of the universe.
    /sarcasm off

    To be honest I'm with Cushing. To say that the Jedi could never cause an imbalance because they serve the Senate and the Republic is a bit naive top be honest. If they serve the Senate blindly, as they did during the Clone Wars, they could either allow the Sith to take over, as in the case of Palpatine, or they could go the other way if a Senate swung from the far right to the far right.

    Also, the fact that they work so closely with the Senate, the Senate and the Republic by default take on their views of the Force and their prejudice against the dark side and the Sith automatically turning the Sith into pariahs. It wouldn't take much for that influence/view to encouarge a crusade against the Sith and all darkside users. Therefore causing a different kind of imbalance than the one surrounding Palpatine. It could all be done with the "right motives" but its still an imbalance.
     
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  19. Arawn_Fenn

    Arawn_Fenn Chosen One star 7

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    Jul 2, 2004
    After trying for some time to accurately source the above quote, I've come to the conclusion that it is not legitimate. For one thing, "The Mythology of Star Wars" video is up on the vimeo site, and it does not contain the quote. So what, if anything, is the actual source of this quote?

    In an essay entitled "'Feeling the Force' - Star Wars and Spiritual Truth" by a John C. McDowell
    (http://www.bethinking.org/culture/feeling-the-force-star-wars-and-spiritual-truth), we find this:

    And if we look at McDowell's citations we find that note #9 is a reference to his own book:

    And if we look inside this book, we find the following:

    But here there is no further attribution of the quote, save the reference to something supposedly called "The Power of the Force" ( former Star Wars toy enthusiasts will recall this as the name of an action figure line ).

    And if we Google the latter part of the quote we discover something quite interesting: it appears to be lifted from the book The Films of Akira Kurosawa by Donald Ritchie:

    So: I'm not sure how or why these words were attributed to George Lucas, but it turns out they were someone else's words ( and were in reference to Drunken Angel, not Star Wars ).
     
  20. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Apr 26, 2009
    GL's May 1973 13-page treatment for The Star Wars was practically lifted from Ritchie's own chapter on The Hidden Fortress in the same book (he was probably using Ritchie's text as his primary reference for the film, rather than the film itself), using extremely similar language.

    Could easily have happened again for other inspirations and references - GL obviously had the book, and has never made any secret of the admiration he has for Akira Kurosawa.
     
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  21. Arawn_Fenn

    Arawn_Fenn Chosen One star 7

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    Jul 2, 2004
    A lot of things "could easily have happened". Such as someone lifting part of the opening narration from the 1980s TV show Tales from the Darkside and pasting it to a quote from the Ritchie book, changing a word or two and slapping George Lucas' name on it.

    ( Of course, when and if an actual source turns up, the quote could be proven to be real. You never know. But I'm not exactly holding my breath. )
     
  22. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001
    I'm just copying and pasting what I was given ten years ago, by I think SithStarSlayer. He was one of the first ones to post quotes in the months leading up to the release of ROTS and I had also participated in it. I had then asked for everything that he had, on top of what I had already gotten on my own.
     
  23. Arawn_Fenn

    Arawn_Fenn Chosen One star 7

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    Jul 2, 2004
    If there's an answer, it may be in the book The Power of the Force: The Spirituality of the Star Wars Films by David Wilkinson ( 2000 ). Despite the year being slightly off, this appears to be what McDowell is referencing for at least part of the quote. However, he doesn't provide an end note with a page reference, which seems odd because in end notes from other parts of the McDowell book specific page references are given for the Wilkinson text and many others. It may be that upon inspection of the Wilkinson text the trail runs cold.
     
  24. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Force Ghost star 5

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    Apr 13, 2011
    That was interesting. I don't think you needed to provide so much evidence for some of your arguments, but I agree with most of what you said.
    I'm going to pick out some of the stuff that stood out to me.


    Besides the concept that Palpatine practically can't die being quite amusing in itself, I wanted to point out a perhaps relevant moment on The Invisible Hand. The scene when Anakin, Palpatine, and Obi-Wan are hanging in the elevator shaft. You'll notice the lives of Anakin's two alternate mentors is in his hands here; he is carrying Obi-Wan and Palpatine who could otherwise easily fall to their death. It is a good representation how much Palpatine is really depending on Anakin, and is pretty ironic when you consider Vader will kill both Masters in the OT.





    I had thought about whether Palpatine personally knew of the prophecy, and you make a decent argument here that he does. Interesting, your suggestion that Palpatine was seeking to subvert the prophecy through a paradox, it seems feasible.
    Palpatine's wording "The Sith will rule the galaxy." (and his assurance the the Empire will last for generations in the scripted version of the declaration of the Empire), does seem to pretty strongly imply Sith rule lasting longer than Palpatine's reign. I had thought it was more just Palpatine gloating that he had a new apprentice and was taking over, but your perspective is richer.
    The movies do seem to imply Vader returning from the dark side was unprecedented, and that plus the rule of two, means Palpatine in his mind was assuring that either Vader or Palpatine would survive to carry on the Order. Good call on the paradox, if Palpatine did know of the prophecy (which I personally don't know is proven either way) this makes sense as his plan.





    The "more powerful than either of us" quote kind of went over my head, especially as a reference Palpatine perhaps expects Anakin to overthrow him.



    Yeah, I'm with you on Palpatine setting the entire confrontation in his office up. I had thought Palpatine could sense Anakin coming while watching in '05, but others have said Palpatine isn't that psychic. I think he is, and he knew Anakin was about to arrive when Mace "disarms" him. I'm undecided on whether Palpatine purposely lost his saber right then, but I'm slanting in favour of your theory.
    Like you've said, it seems much less far-fetched that Palaptine has strong enough precognition to forsee the Anakin/Mace/Palpatine encounter, than it would Palpatine having relied so heavily on coincidence. Anakin and Sidious have a pretty strong connection by ROTS, and as you pointed out Palpatine kind of gives this away with the novelisation line to Mace "You think the fear you are sensing is mine?" Palpatine can almost smell Anakin's approaching (and powerful) force-presence.


    I'm pretty tired, I will continue this tomorrow.
     
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  25. enigmaticjedi

    enigmaticjedi Jedi Knight star 3

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    Nov 2, 2011
    Brilliant analysis!

    Want to ask one question though: Does Palpatine know about the prophecy in the films?

    He does not seem to mention it directly, but he does seem to know that Anakin has the potential to surpass both himself and Yoda. Does he know this, because he is aware of the prophecy, or can he just sense Anakin's Force potential? Does Lucas say whether Palpatine knew?