Post Reply
Switch to Forum Live View The Matrix and Jedi
5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 1:58PM #1
SecondSonOfDavid
Posts: 3,344

There is no spoon.


Early in the movie The Matrix, the character Neo meets with a number of "potentials" in the sitting room of an apartment of a being known as 'The Oracle'.  I'm not going to go too far into that film, so no worries if you have not seen The Matrix,  


but I recommend the movie because it helps illustrate something of how the Jedi mindset works.  There is something of the Zen in both cultures, even if the movie is fictional and the origin of Jedi as well.  That is, a valid source is valid regardless of its cause and development.  Also, just as in The Matrix   the character Neo discovers that his world is illusory and his potential exceeds far beyond the apparent boundaries imposed by his perception, so too do the Jedi discover abilities which transcend beyond their own apparent limits.  While some people may regard this observation as a naïve claim to supernatural abilities, in reality this discovery reminds the Jedi to doubt his senses, trust intution and find his core essence.  When attained, this ability not only improve physical limits to some degree, but also perception, critical thinking and meditation.


In The Matrix, Neo meets a young boy who appears to be bending and unbending a spoon with his mind.  The boy explains that this can only be done when you realize that there is no spoon.  Later, Neo ralizes that because the Matrix is a world that does not exist in reality but is merely virtual, he can manipulate the Matrix to change the world as he sees fit, provided he focuses on the underlying reality instead of superficial perceptions.  That is a valid lesson for the Jedi as well, as expressed in Yoda's maxim "Do ... or do not.  There is no 'try'."


 

That which does not kill me, will try again and get nastier.
Quick Reply
Cancel
5 years ago  ::  Aug 29, 2009 - 12:29AM #2
gorm-sionnach
Posts: 1,663

Except in its basic form, the Jedi philosophy is wholly extrovert, concepts of the centrality of the inner self would be much more in keeping with Sith maxims. The Jedi does refeect many aspects which in many of the Eastern religions, Hinduism and Buddhism, deal with ataining elightenment via unattatching oneself from the physical world, and this view is reflected in the Jedi perview of maintaining a detatched disposistion to posessions, relationships, even life itself. However unlike these religions, the Jedi have no specific goal/ end, other than living in tune with the living force (and arguably protecting the galaxy). All things, when they die, are spoken of returning to the force, and no state of enlightenment is required to attain this. The closest related aspect could be the force spirit, that being maintaining self conciousness (and form) after returning to the Force upon physical death. Of course, the exact method for attaining this is never revealed, though we know it began with master Qui Gon Jin, who passed it on to Master Yoda, then onto Master Obi-Wan Kenobi. However, the Sith also developed a similar 9if not quite as flexible technique), wherein they attatch a part of ther spirit to a physical anchor, generally an artifact or structure imbued with the prescence of the Dark Side, again no concept of enlightenment is affixed to the ability to perform this.


Further, force users acknowledge the existence of the material world (without it, there would be no Force, nor objects to apply the force to) hence there must in fact be "a spoon". The Jedi are not under the impression that the universe they inhabit is an illusiory one, as it was in The Matrix, rather that there is an objective, observable universe which is held together by the Force, which if anything would best be described as a form of panentheistic animism (there is a unifying prescence throughout the universe, represented by every animate/inanimate object).

Truth in our hearts, Strength in our arms, Fulfillment in our tongues.
Quick Reply
Cancel
5 years ago  ::  Aug 29, 2009 - 1:41PM #3
SecondSonOfDavid
Posts: 3,344

Thank you, gorm-sionnach;


The Buddha once taught his disciples, that if a man said he had a soul they should disagree. He then went on to also say that if a man said he had no soul, again they should disagree. This is a paradox of the transcendent, an observation about both the stabile unchanging nature of the universe, and also its chaotic upredictable condition of constant change. We regularly learn to do and become things which are impossible at the earlier time. This requires, in some situations, for a person to step away from the world he knows and accept one he does not know, to replace the present form with the desired version. In The Matrix, the world of the Matrix is illusory in that none of the material facts are true, yet the people who live there are real, the things they do are real and if someone dies in the Matrix world, they die for real. Thus, we see that transcendent paradox present in the Matrix, and the lesson here is that our world is similarly transcendent.


 


Aug 29, 2009 -- 12:29AM, gorm-sionnach wrote:

Except in its basic form, the Jedi philosophy is wholly extrovert, concepts of the centrality of the inner self would be much more in keeping with Sith maxims.



 


I must disagree. For instance, in the films we often see Jedi Masters demonstrating the results of apparent meditation and intospection - these are done off-camera for obvious cinematic reasons, but we should not ignore their occurence. So too in the human world, many masters in different fields act only after long prior consideration and introspection.


 


The Jedi does reflect many aspects which in many of the Eastern religions, Hinduism and Buddhism, deal with attaining elightenment via unattatching oneself from the physical world, and this view is reflected in the Jedi perview of maintaining a detatched disposistion to possessions, relationships, even life itself. However unlike these religions, the Jedi have no specific goal/ end, other than living in tune with the living force (and arguably protecting the galaxy). All things, when they die, are spoken of returning to the force, and no state of enlightenment is required to attain this.



 


Again, I see a different conclusion. Consider that in the films, the Jedi Masters Yoda, Obi Wan, and Anikin all die, and their resolution following death is subtly but undeniably different. We also see their way of action and even thought in different dimensions. It should follow that Jedi, being individuals in the majority of their lives, also find distinctive and personal identities in their walk. The paradox here is that in losing the pride of self, they refine their perception of the nouminous, and so are unfooled by mere phenomenon.


 


The 'spoon' I refute, therefore, is not the material spoon, but the phenomenon of the spoon. The underlying reality remains and is seen for its true character ad purpose, and as such true wisdom and attainment are made possible.

That which does not kill me, will try again and get nastier.
Quick Reply
Cancel
 
    Viewing this thread :: 0 registered and 1 guest
    No registered users viewing
    Advertisement

    Beliefnet On Facebook