Do you remember what it was like before you were born? No? That’s the point. We are forever aborning. Each moment a new incarnation, and in each moment the original conviction is arrived at again. Yet for all our convictions we are still constantly aborning.
Last, we spoke of the Jedi code / Jedi spirituality. Each statement of the code : refers not to individuals, but to the force / life principle / anthropic principle itself. The most fundamental conclusion of the Jedi is that underlying everything is a peaceful spirit, that ultimately everything seeks to live in harmony and with minimal suffering. But as nice as this sounds, would you say it is accurate? Does it reflect your personal experience of the world?
Not really. It doesn’t seem to take note of suffering.
To the Sith, the force is different. Their stance is not necessarily immoral. They don’t oppose moral behavior. In fact, in the story-line more than one Sith were known for their ultimately moral character. Count Dooku was seen as a man of high moral character, even the emperor was in his own way. His behaviour, before his coup of the Republic, was not out of character for him. This is a big part of why the Jedi didn’t sense his true intentions.
I just realized that Count Dooku is similar to Saruman, both played by Christopher Lee. Indeed, and Saruman’s line of reasoning wasn’t immoral either as foolish as it was. He even tried to reason with Gandalf. He saw Gandalf’s rejection of the argument as a moral failing.
So the first statement of the Sith code is … Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
How long can you experience peace in your life? How long do things remain calm and serene as you go about your daily affairs?
Not long. Even when they are, we’re likely to get bored and cause agitation of some kind.
The oldest and truest definition of suffering is disturbance. Any emotion leads to a state of unease, even joy. Joy itself can lead to mental illness as the brain becomes unable to regulate itself properly. Does it seem useful to try and control our emotions? To subdue them?
When in public, yes, but we have to let them out sometime or it creates stress.
The second statement of the Sith code is … Through passion I gain strength. This is a common observation both in modern and older society. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Pain builds character. Many people would agree with the second statement quite readily. To the Sith, efforts to deny the emotional impact of experience are nothing more than self delusion which they see as a moral failing.
In the Maori Haka dance they use passion to build strength. It’s the same in karate with the kiai. There are spiritual practices in the real world that would very much resemble the Sith practices. I studied something called Doshinkan karate for a time. Doshinkan means spirited way school. They didn’t believe in training slowly or practising without full commitment to the technique. I find myself wanting to apply that even to my current tai chi practice. I do sense how the tai chi motions could be much more spirited and forceful, dynamic.
The third statement is … Through strength I gain power. Strength itself… Does that imply ability?
Not usually, no.
Abraham Lincoln commented on this. I paraphrase. He said that everyone can endure suffering relatively easily, mostly they have little or no choice, but to really know someones character, he said you had to give them power. So to apply this to the third statement of the Sith code, how could one gain power through strength? Any thoughts?
Self discipline? That would contribute, yes.
Others seek strength in someone else.
There is an old principle, and it was not uncommon in the worlds oldest cultures, the various tribal nations. Simply stated, that power is the reward of the virtuous. If you have and can wield power, it’s because you understand something about yourself or the world around you better than anyone else does.
That’s a very dangerous mindset. Many do believe that to be a dangerous idea, but this principle would explain how power can be derived from strength. As suffering makes you stronger, your understanding of the world is shaped, deepened. You come to understand those things that lead you to suffer, and that influence other people as well.
I see that often in hero worship of powerful people.
Any questions about the first three statements of the Sith code so far?
With building strength you build wisdom? Arguably yes, to the Sith code strength is wisdom.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.