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Saga The prophecy of the Chosen One...

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Polydroxol, Feb 14, 2014.

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When did Anakin/Darth Vader bring balance to the Force?

  1. The Jedi Purge.

    1.8%
  2. Killing Darth Sidious.

    58.2%
  3. Both, they equally contributed to the Force being balanced.

    32.7%
  4. Other

    7.3%
  1. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Sep 23, 1999
    This presumes that Will is the thing 'driving the bus.' There is some experimental evidence that this may not be the case (though it's disputed, of course). But that's still a good question - what would be the use of it? Well, imagine you have an organism that interacts with its environment. It's useful for it to be able to distinguish between different actors and effects in that environment, because it needs certain inputs to survive, and needs to avoid others (dangers). The calculations of the organism's mind guide it toward the things that seem like the things it needs and away from things that it deems dangerous. Let's say that this creature's environment is filled with other organisms too, and they are all interacting. So it's useful for it to be able to guess at the motivations and possible actions of the other organisms in its environment, so it can then predict how they will or won't attack, share, etc. This starts to become a Theory of Mind. The thing about that is that those abilities to sense and predict others, and form narratives about what others have done or could do... those also apply inwardly too. You form narratives about your 'self,' too. It's a tool for understanding the interactions of the body with the surrounding social and natural environments.

    The Will might not be the ultimate cause of actions; rather, it could be that actions are driven (partially at least) from below levels of 'awareness' (and/or that felt 'Will' comes after the action has begun, as with the Readiness Potential or other experiments), and what we call Will is a way to assign authenticity to actions taken by the body of which the mind is a part (just for fun, cf. with people doing things and then judging themselves, saying things like 'that's not me,' or cf. also with people with Alien Hand Syndrome, etc).

    The 'free' in 'free will' means free from interference or influence, right? It's easy to say, due to our definitions of words, that someone's actions were free from 'coercion' -- in the sense that no one 'had a gun to their head.' But this does not get rid of the fact that their actions are completely contingent on each small detail of the world they're inhabiting. Any impulse that we could call 'Will' is shaped by a brain-mind that has had uncountable small influences over years, each one of those dependent on also-uncountable factors, from a childhood memory of being late for an appointment to the accidental twice-the-normal-amount of caffeine in the subject's coffee this morning (due to the barista's sleep deprivation, which was caused by ___, which is because of.... etc etc etc). Not to mention all the non-Will effects that define the choices the 'Will' is able to deal with, like how if someone else (with their own long chain of history, too) had gotten in line for coffee right before the subject did, then the caffeine effect wouldn't even be part of the story. It's a big web that extends all the way back to the beginning. A 'Will' is a unit of that web that is sometimes useful to talk about. But we shouldn't mistake it for some kind of driver that is independent of the rest of everything.

    I admit I'm not entirely sure what you're saying here (does the last part argue with the possibility of Jedi-like farseeing?), but as to the bolded part: I mean it that way only because quantum fluctuations are random events. So as far as I understand, they don't really seem to bias their effects in any one direction. They sort of form a background noise to macro effects.

    I'm curious - do you have any favorite writings or authors (or video/audio of talks, for that matter) on this subject? It's something I too like to deepen my understanding of. For me, Susan Blackmore, Douglas Hofstadter (his book I Am A Strange Loop), and Sam Harris (his book Free Will) are some that I'm pretty sure I share views with.
     
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  2. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Sep 23, 1999
    Also, I wish I could have found a less political and more detailed article from Sam Harris before my edit time ran out. I don't want to turn it into a political back-and-forth; the concepts are much more fundamental and interesting than that.
     
  3. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Sep 23, 1999
    ... I realize now that I probably could have been more concise: Yes, we have feelings of will. But where do those come from? If we trace any thought back far enough,we find that at some point it just 'occurred to us.' And we can't will what occurs to us to will. Things occur to us because of our history, our personality, the situation we're in at the time, and chance. Will in some sense 'exists,' but it can always be traced back to the effects of non-will.
     
  4. Arawn_Fenn

    Arawn_Fenn Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Jul 2, 2004
    My post said nothing of Luke, while the narrative does concern itself with victory over the Empire ( including Vader and the Emperor, whose defeat Luke is linked to in dialogue ).

    I assumed no such thing, I was just referring to the content of a post by Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn. It is one thing to say "there is a prophecy in the PT" and "there is not a prophecy in the OT". It is quite another to imply that visons are not to be mistrusted in the PT, in seeming ignorance of Anakin's story arc, or to imply that one's actions do not affect the future in the PT, or to imply that prophecies come equipped with an in-universe guarantee of fulfillment. None of these things are true. Imaginary differences between the trilogies can be dispelled as easily as they are invented.
     
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  5. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Sep 23, 1999
    It is interesting, though, that the Jedi seem very familiar with and pretty much accepting of the prophecy, while smaller personal visions seem more tempered by the 'always in motion' wisdom. Yoda does at one point wonder whether the prophecy was 'misread,' but even that implies a problem with their later interpretation rather than the initial vision itself. Is there a difference between regular visions and the ones that become prophecies? Are there other prophecies than the one about bringing balance to the Force? Who knows?
     
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  6. MOC Vober Dand

    MOC Vober Dand Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jan 6, 2004
    There's a difference between an in-universe contradiction and a break down of logic though. Nowhere in the OT, that I can recall, is it said that there wasn't a prophecy, a Chosen One or a will of the force. They add to what's there, without necessarily contradicting it. Fair enough. I don't like what those things do to the story of the OT, but fair enough. But when Lucas then comes out and says that the future continues to always be in motion as it always appeared to be in the OT, I'm afraid that's where rhyme and reason start to break down for me on a large scale. If the force can and will intervene as directly as it does when it bypasses the normal reproductive process to create a human being with an express purpose in life, a few questions naturally arise:

    If it's able to do this, why not just do the job itself.

    If it's going to go to the trouble of doing this, why on Earth would it then give that being the option of not doing that job, as the existence of free will would suggest?
     
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  7. TOSCHESTATION

    TOSCHESTATION Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 17, 2003
    Question for you:

    Are Force skills hereditary or is it just Force potential that is hereditary?

    edit:

    ^^^^^^This.
     
  8. bstnsx704

    bstnsx704 Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 11, 2013

    Could very well be that it can't. The midi-chloians, however, should be able to (via influence by Plagueis and the Sith). They are, after all, life forms, and the Force flows through all life.

    There was a Prophecy stating the coming of a Chosen One who would destroy the Sith and bring balance to the Force.
    There was a Sith Lord with the power to manipulate midi-chlorians via the Force to create life.
    There was speculation on Qui-Gon's part that Anakin was conceived by midi-chlorians.

    It makes sense that Plagueis (intentionally? inadvertently?) created Anakin. The real question is why? Did he not know Anakin's true potential and simply plan to use as a Sith weapon like Palpatine did? Or did he see the future (his death at the hands of Palpatine) coming and plant the seeds for the Chosen One as a way to ensure that the Sith would not long outlast him? Whatever the intentions it is interesting that, through their corruption and unbalancing of the Force, the Sith ultimately created the being that would lead to their inevitable downfall.
     
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  9. MOC Vober Dand

    MOC Vober Dand Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jan 6, 2004
    So... the fulfilment of the prophecy that the Chosen One would destroy the Sith and bring balance to the force was brought about by the Sith unbalancing the force and creating the Chose One?
     
  10. bstnsx704

    bstnsx704 Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 11, 2013

    From a certain point of view ;)

    But seriously, I'd say yes up until the point about the Sith unbalancing the Force by creating the Chosen One. The Force was already out of balance before that, for however long the Sith had been around (including the thousand years when the Jedi thought them to be extinct).
     
  11. MOC Vober Dand

    MOC Vober Dand Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jan 6, 2004
    It's an interesting point, 704.
     
  12. Iron_lord

    Iron_lord 26X Wacky Wednesday/23x Hangman Winner star 10 VIP - Game Winner

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    Sep 2, 2012
    While the Book of Sith does have hints that Plagueis had plans to do so, as has been noted in the past:

    the Darth Plagueis novel itself has him try, and believe he's failed. And when he discovers Anakin, his reaction is not "I succeeded after all" but more along the lines of "The Force may have struck back in response to our actions". That chapter is even called "The Force Strikes Back".
     
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  13. Samuel Vimes

    Samuel Vimes Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Sep 4, 2012
    Well Shmi got pregnant without having ***. If the midis are the ones who caused it then they would have to have done a bit more than just start cellular division in one of her eggs. They would also have needed to alter the chromosomes in the egg, otherwise Anakin would have been female and a clone of Shmi. Doing this would require quite a bit of knowledge of genetics and since the midis are microscopic beings they lack this knowledge. So the midis could be the ones who did the actual work but someone else gave them the order and told them how to do this.

    The Force is the most likely candidate here. For it to be Plageious, he would have to have been around Shmi or somehow tell the midis in Shmi's body what to do. So he would know something Anakin. If he does not, that suggest he didn't do this.


    [/QUOTE]

    A bit of Frankenstein here, someone creates something that winds up destroying them.
    As above, it is unlikely that Plageious could have created Anakin by doing something else, the knowledge needed is too specific. It is possible that the Force created Anakin in response to what Plageious was doing. So had he not done that, then Anakin wouldn't have been born.

    As for Plageious creating something that will destroy the Sith if he is killed. Seems a bit convoluted.
    A simpler method is to have Palpatine get some drug and Plageious is the only one who knows the antidote. Or he puts some bomb inside Palpatine that will detonate the moment Plageious dies.

    Bye for now.
    Blackboard Monitor
     
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  14. darth-sinister

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

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    Jun 28, 2001
    It becomes the chicken and the egg dilemma.
     
  15. EntechednReformatted

    EntechednReformatted Jedi Master star 2

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    Oct 17, 2009
    I subscribe to the "Sith plot" view of Anakin's origin for one main reason: if you believe that the Force itself conceived Anakin, you should ask yourself "why?" If you look at the way events played out, Anakin's ultra-high midiclorian count ended up being pretty much beside the point. Sure, Sidious talks about Anakin surpassing him, but he never did. Not only did he never surpass Yoda or Sidious, he never even really surpassed Obi-Wan to any major degree.

    And he didn't need to.

    I've got to ask: what did Anakin ever do that someone else, someone who was conceived by good old-fashioned sex, someone with a high but not-unheard-of midiclorian count, could not have done? Why would the Force itself violate the natural processes of the universe to stage this one-time miracle to create a superbeing, even though a superbeing was not necessary? Did the Force think a superbeing would be necessary? Was the Force simply mistaken?

    I'm inclined to think that the will of the Force plays out in more subtle ways than miracle pregnancies. That sort of unnatural event feels far more like Sith activity. The Force would do something more nuanced; like, say ... subvert the Sith's plans for their superbeing by using his emotional ties to his son (his naturally-conceived son) to inspire the superbeing to turn on the Sith.

    The fate of the galaxy and the balance of the Force didn't depend on the fact that Anakin didn't have a father. It depended on the fact that Luke did.
     
  16. Obi-yoda

    Obi-yoda Jedi Youngling star 2

    Registered:
    Mar 10, 2014
    One might argue that "Return of the Jedi" 's title could also mean the return of the Jedi spirit within Anakin. Also...I agree with EntechednReformatted
    I've thought of it this way too: Anakin prepared the galaxy (by killing Sidious [before Dark Empire times anyways]) for the work Luke had to do to truly bring back the Jedi. Anakin destroyed the IMMEDIATE threat to the Force's balance. Thus, whether he was created by Plagueis or not becomes irrelevant.

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. Iron_lord

    Iron_lord 26X Wacky Wednesday/23x Hangman Winner star 10 VIP - Game Winner

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    Sep 2, 2012
    Or simply clouding Plagueis's perceptions - so he didn't sense Anakin had been created - and didn't go to wherever Shmi was to retrieve her and her unborn child.

    To paraphrase Dooku:

    "The light side has clouded their vision"
     
  18. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Sep 23, 1999
    As much as I like this explanation (and I quite like it, really), it still leaves you wondering, if the Force is still an active participant and can - even subtly - direct the behaviors of sentients, why did it take that particular path (using Anakin, in this case, as opposed to using anyone or anything else)? I suppose one possible answer is embedded in your explanation... that the Force could have a sense of humor, or irony. It starts to turn the Force into a character. ('Fate' or 'destiny' is frequently seen as somewhat fickle, so I guess that's not too specific of a character trait. But that trait would probably be assigned to 'fate' by the characters regardless of whether the Force was doing the directing or not - in real life people feel that way anyhow.)

    Also, can the Force see the future here or not? If it can, it still probably could have resolved the imbalance before it even was supposed to have occurred, even with very subtle abilities.

    It might be that you're using the 'Will of the Force' in an analogous way to 'luck was on their side' or the like, a very vague way. That's possible, though I don't know what Lucas's intentions were, and probably a few people on here would argue for a stronger/more heavy-handed Will to the Force.
     
  19. darth-sinister

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

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    Jun 28, 2001

    You're almost getting the point, but not quite. Had Anakin not been a selfish person who was unable to sacrifice his life with Padme, for the sake of the galaxy, he would have fought Palpatine and bested him in battle. But because he was a selfish person who was unwilling to make that sacrifice, he wound up being physically impaired by Obi-wan, which then lead to his wanting to convert his son after finding out about him. Which in turn lead to their two battles, the first of which sparked the beginnings of his return from the dark side. And the second where he makes the choice to turn back and thus kill Palpatine.

    That's why Lucas said what triggered his birth isn't as important as what he ultimately chose to do in the end. The only difference is that he made two choices, one which was the wrong choice and one which was the right one. The Force didn't make anyone do anything. The people made their own choices. Something else Lucas talks about, when he said that you can either choose to follow your destiny or not. Anakin refused the call for twenty four years.
     
  20. EntechednReformatted

    EntechednReformatted Jedi Master star 2

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    Oct 17, 2009
    darth-sinister and Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn both make good points. Just to clarify myself, I did not intend to personify the Force too much. In fact, that's another reason to be skeptical of the idea that the Force created Anakin. It makes the Force into too much of a conscious agent. What I meant to suggest was that IF the "will of the Force" (whatever that means) did anything at all, it would be something subtle, something difficult to pin down, something that would leave future Jedi/Sith/Whill historians and philosophers scratching their heads and debating endlessly about the roles of destiny, guidance, and free will for centuries to come.

    (Obi-Wan: Remember, a Jedi can feel the Force flowing through him."
    Luke: "You mean it controls your actions?"
    Obi-Wan: "Partially. But always with plausible deniability."
    [face_whistling] )

    I don't disagree with darth-sinister at all: Force or not, people make their own decisions. The most, and I mean absolute most, that the Force is ever going to do is to guide people to the right place at the right time to have a chance to fulfill their destinies.

    The Sith gave Anakin life.
    The Force gave him a destiny.
    Anakin chose (eventually) to fulfill that destiny.
     
  21. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Sep 23, 1999
    Oh I got what you meant (I think), and I like the idea of the Force as a force of nature, not an agent, too. But I don't think it's clear what Lucas intended (how much agency he intended), and there are fans who seem to prefer a higher degree of agency.

    And even without agency, even if the Force was just reacting, Newtonian-like, this is a case in which reaction needn't come after action, because the Force has a... strange... relationship with time. Why couldn't the reaction to whatever caused the imbalance come first and simply prevent the imbalance to begin with?
     
  22. Iron_lord

    Iron_lord 26X Wacky Wednesday/23x Hangman Winner star 10 VIP - Game Winner

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    Sep 2, 2012
    That sounds like the tagline of a movie - would be a good way to sum them up, if true.
     
  23. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Apr 26, 2009


     
  24. Kato Sai

    Kato Sai Chosen One star 8

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    Apr 27, 2014
    I think my original answer was when he slayed Sidious. But, I have taken into account that there cannot be balance if there are legions of Jedi and only two Sith. However, if you follow the latter thinking, Anakin never created balance and may never have been the Chosen One! Since Luke survives, there is still a Jedi, but no Sith. So now the Force is yet again unbalanced after the death of Sidious.
     
  25. thejeditraitor

    thejeditraitor Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 19, 2003
    end of rotj. no question.
     
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