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8 years ago  ::  Jan 02, 2010 - 7:11AM #1
Posts: 23

The Jedi Path is often mired in debate and discussion on a philosophical level. As such we often forget to give the simple practical applications of our Path. Whether to ourselves, our students, or those simply curious to learn more about the Jedi Way. As such I'd like to offer a little practical application of the Jedi Path. Afterall, what is the point of living by philosophical ideals if you cannot apply them to everday life.

Overcoming Anger:
This is one of the biggest issues that we have humans face, almost on a daily basis. And we see Jedi as calm individuals, not quick to anger. Two questions arise from this, why and how? Anger stems from many locations within, impatience, denial, ego. When we find that our ideals and self-image are attacked we get defensive. Reason and logic cease to be our main tools and instead stubborn idealism becomes our shield, our emotions become our sword.

What we, as Jedi, must do is to work around that. And while it is as simple as, just don't do it, =) we do need a bit more guidance than that. Jedi have been working with such issues for years and have very basics steps to help one deal with anger when it arises. Most of it comes down to patience and keeping a logical mind.

First we want to institute some simple relaxation techniques. For the purpose of simplicity we will go with a singular technique (remember this bare bone basics, in training things are much more in-depth and there are several techniques to work with and from): When in the shower (or bath) stop for a moment (you can do this anytime, anywhere, and as many times as you wish. I simply use shower, as it is often a daily task which you have some privacy). Just close your eyes and breathe. Just breathe deeply and comfortably. You do not have to do this for long (if you need a number - say 15 deep breaths before continuing on), but be sure to do it daily. No rush, no visualization, no mantras, simply breathe, relax, and move on.

Now - when next time your anger rises, simply take a deep breath just like you do in the exercise daily. And ask yourself a few fundamental questions. Why am I angry? What is really bothering me about this? What does my anger solve? Will getting upset resolve the situation? Will it resolve the situation with a beneficial outcome for all people involved? Can I remain calm, use clear evidence and fact to resolve the situation without restorting to anger?
Now rarely do we get a few minutes in a situation to think over these things. Thus you must step up and take charge a bit. Be prepared to say, when you find yourself upset, "Give me a minute to think on what you said." This is a reasonable request, which most will allow because it seems you are or will concede your point (or apologize). However it will not buy you a lot of time (especially if dealing with an angry customer in the customer service field). But you have bought yourself a few moments, to stop, breathe, collect your thoughts, reflect, and now, with another deep breath, ready to confront the issue at hand as a Jedi.

It is hard to detach yourself (ego) from a situation and look at things objectively. But this is the goal, as it will help greatly in resolving many issues (both professionally and personally). Just remember that a Jedi is calm, patient, and objective. They are not passive doormats there to be used and forgotten until needed again. As a Jedi you want to remove emotional bias, and focus on the facts at hand. When someone insults you, if it is irrelevant to the situation at hand and thus should be disregarded as such. If it is relevent to the situation, than consider it, objectively look at it. "Am I slow at my job? Well comparing myself on average to the other workers, no I am actually a little above average. And that is backed by X-amount of experience. So that person was/is just trying to get under my skin."

Now a trick all Jedi should do is this type of self-awareness as often as possible. Keeping true self-honesty within. That way when anyone throws an insult - "You are fat!" You can think in your head immediately, "Hmm, I actually have been losing weight. And while I am not where I want to be physically, I know that by medical standards I am a very healthy individual." Or even thinking, "HAHA. I know it. I see myself in the mirror daily. But that is why I am making changes, working-out, eating healthy, so I can lose weight and be at the body type I want to be at." Self-Awareness will defeat ego-bruising insults (a leading cause of anger) quickly, as there is nothing anyone can say which you do not already know or can dismiss easily.

A technique you can do to help with this is to take a few moments and really look at yourself in the mirror. Than in journal/notebook/etc write down things you would like to work on (change you can do), things you would like to change (things you cannot change), write down things you do like about yourself. And remember to look beyond the physical and consider yourself as a whole person, dress, demeanor, attitude. Likes and dislikes, change and truly not able to change (or just would prefer not to - such as type of plastic surgery required). Than write, remember, and know that you have the power and ability to change, if you so desire. All you have to do is work for it.

As all things these ideas are a matter of practice. Just something you can work on and towards daily. These simple ideas can bring the Jedi Way into your life in a very real and applicable way. There is always much more, but it is in basics that we can find the greatest support.

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