Archive for the ‘IJRS Courses’ Category

This blog has not been used for awhile…I guess I have been waiting for the best time in order to post. I like my things to have more ‘substance’ to them I suppose. I like them to have more meaning than just the basic update saying: “Hey I did this thing…so yeah…that’s all I got.”

Anyways, I’m pretty sure that I mentioned my move to Texas.
My whole life has changed in that I did not return to my home-state. Rather, I met someone and moved to Texas to begin a new life there. I got a job at a movie-theater, and while I may not get very many hours, I’m happy. I am happy with how things have been going. I live in a place where I am comfortable and mostly stress-free. My partner and I never bicker, we share a bunch of the same interests, and it’s nice here. She understands that spiritually her and I are different…but unlike the people I have been with before, she is interested in learning about the way in which I view the world, my practices, and she ‘understands’ rather than just ‘accepting’ the way that I am. It’s nice.

But enough about that…

I have gotten a little hefty since leaving Germany. a lot of it is laziness, but another factor of this has been my eating full meals. In Germany I was lucky enough to have 2 meals a day, and now I eat a full 3 a day and my body has been storing a lot of fat. So, I have started exercising again. But, rather than just focusing on cardio, I actually want to look into weight lifting. My partner says that working out my pecs will help in lifting my breasts (they are way too large and cause issues for my backs. They get stretch marks because they sag and get pulled eveyr which way when I’m not wearing a bra). But yeah…sorry if that was TMI, but, weightlifting is also to help me build power in my arms and help me work out my abs.

My stretch marks have gotten out of control, it’s making me self-conscious, so, it’s time I do something about it rather than sit and feel bad about myself and my body. I was going to do Yoga, but, because I’m looking to lose a lot of weight, I was recommended to do Pilates instead. I did Pilates back in high-school. It was not too strenuous, and I know that it works…so I got myself a kit, and I will be working out with that tomorrow. I also got trimmers for my arms, thighs, and belly. Basically they are just bands that help me cut down on my water weight super quick. I will wear the bands to work and such when I can’t exercise as hard as I would on my day off.
for something more fun, my partner and I bought softball gloves, and I get to teach her how to properly throw and catch a softball (which I think will be really fun). I dunno how this will go, dunno when I’m going to see results. To aid in my diet, my partner bought me a book for women body-builders, and we are going to work together to eat better. She needs to build muscle and tone herself…I need to slim down and tone, so, hopefully we find something that fits both of our needs.

Speaking of books I want to take up reading again…

One day I decided that I need to stimulate my mind more. I used part of my paycheck to pick up some books on Amazon. Bought myself the “Satanic Bible”, the “Necronomicon” (re-buying this and it’s more for giggles and my love of HP Lovecraft), and then I bought “120 Days of Sodom”.
I remember that “120 Days of Sodom” was recommended to me by Mortose. She was one of the darkest people I have ever met…she is the embodiment of cold and evil and she found the book interesting and somewhat “enlightening”. While her and I were like night and day to each other, I learned a lot for her, and to this day, I am very sad that we lost touch. She never judged me on my views, never wagged a finger for me being more Light or Dark, but rather, she understood I had my ways and only tried to open my eyes to new things. In fact, she is one of the few people I know whom I can say actually held “true power” when it came to “The Force”. Still, while I could never be her apprentice, the things she said still stick to me, the lessons she tried to teach me still swirl in my head from time-to-time, and now, reading this book, maybe I too will find something worth blogging about and adding to my many writings as something of a lesson.

The Satanic Bible is more for my religious studies. I have read it once before, but, that was a PDF and I really hate reading things on my computer screen. It’s much more satisfying to have a book in my hand and to be flipping pages.

So lastly…going to lessons, I have started on Meditation 101 at IJRS.
I’m still trying to do courses, and while they are going very slowly, I am doing them nonetheless. While I had already started on Spirituality, that requires me to watch the Star Wars movies, and I not only have lost interest (for now), I won’t be watching the movies again until closer to the release of the new movie coming out this year. Also, meditation is something I already practice. So it makes more sense.

My meditation techniques have become ‘rusty’ to say the least.
Changes in my life have changed my core, changed my ‘Void’. No longer do I enter the dark side of my void in dark robes and makeup…now when I enter, I enter in the form of a red wolf.

Baal Wolfmaker Wyndbain

This red wolf’s path is blocked by giant vines lined with thorns…and no matter how I might try to tear through them, where one breaks, three more vines take over. the wolf itself is myself as “EshBa’al” thus the horns, and the chains around her connect in her chest where her heart is. The black spots on the wolf are my flaws and imperfections that I wear proudly, the scars are from obstacles I had to overcome in my spiritual journey. The white pattern on the face is a skull, representation of worship of the creature which is bound to my soul…my spirit-guardian Ba’al.

This change in form comes as I have finally become open about being a Furry. It was something I hid while I was with Taz because she thought it was ‘weird’ and yet, she, like so many others placed the Furry Fandom as something more ‘perverted’. She thought that furries were freaks that dressed in animal suits to commit sexual acts and that’s not how it is. But, she was never one to try and understand and once she had an idea of something, it just stuck.

But, with this new relationship, I am now able to break free. I am able to be myself…and I can finally free the beast inside…so my void reflects that and shows what I consider my true dark-side form.

But, as I mentioned, I have been blocked by my void, so, I’m hoping what I learn in Meditation 101 can help me overcome this. I blame it on a lack of concentration, I also don’t have my beads which aided me so often before (I think they got lost in my household goods somewhere).

I already finished the intro and will be doing at least the next part some time this week. Hopefully the instructor checks their page often enough that I can know when to move on with the next lesson.

But, that’s all the updates I have for now…
Hopefully I will have more to write about soon.

Spirituality 101: Lesson One

Posted: October 5, 2014 in IJRS Courses

Exercise #1 —Meaning of the Myth

Assignment:
What are some of your earliest memories of watching Episodes IV, V, and VI? How did you feel? With what character(s) did you identify? What about the story resonated with you? What images remain with you to this day?

 

A character that stood out the most to me in episode 4 was indeed Luke Skywalker. Anakin being my favorite character from the first three episodes, Luke is very different from his Father in that he is reluctant to become a Jedi at first. He has become settled in his life as a moisture farmer and while (I think) he knows his true calling, he would rather lead a life without complication.
It is only when his Aunt and Uncle are murdered that he feels he has no choice. He still had a choice but felt as if he didn’t. He had nothing holding him onto what he held most dear anymore, so he decided to take up Obi-wan’s offer, travel with him, and become a Jedi.

 
While he seemed so scared of complication at first, it is Luke who would eventually step up and try and rescue the Princess, even though he knows the risks. It’s as if leaving that which had him so grounded made him a new person, almost as if a blindfold had been taken off from around his eyes.

 
Same thing goes when he signs up to try and destroy the Death Star. He was just a mere farmer not too long ago, and now, he has taken drastic steps and measures and is stepping into the shoes of a hero and a legend.
What stood out to me most in this episode was just the over all fear. There is hope that the people will prevail over Vader but you can see that while hope is there, fear reigns in that they are saying one thing, but they are thinking another. The people have doubts, they are frail. Even with the idea that a new Jedi will be made and that they can gain victory over the Dark Side, their faith is still very weak. That’s what I remember at least.

 
However in Episode V of the series, there are only a few parts that I remember. You have the giant walkers which are iconic . Then the part where Luke lands on the swampy planet to be trained by Yoda…again, completely iconic and this was the first Yoda I ever knew, and would hold this version of him closest to me. Yoda stood out as a character because he seemed quite mad. He was cooky, almost crazy…and for awhile, even after he admitted to being Yoda, I wondered if perhaps he really was Yoda or if this was just another trick. The character might seem wise, but something in his attitude also told me that his way of thinking as a character was much deeper than what was lead on, and that this thing could be very devious if he really wanted to be.

 
The last bit I remember is the part where Vader reveals to be Luke’s father and noting the anguish in Luke’s cry before he jumps off of a stand. I also know that this where Luke gets his hand sliced off, but as a child, I believe this part was edited out on the TV, and I did not see it until many many years later when my father showed it to me. This was also the episode where Hans and Leia really start to ship as a couple, but it never interested me at all as I never liked either of the characters.

 
In Episode VI I remember even less. Having grown up with episodes 1-3 as they came out to theaters, what I saw on VHS within my brother’s room or on TV every once in awhile did not really stick with me because I was too young.
But I do remember Darth Vader’s death as Anakin Skywalker…as the man who was once a promising Jedi and the Chosen one comes full circle, breaking free of the Emperor’s grasp and the Dark Side, and how he died slowly, but, he died a hero rather than the villain. He redeemed himself…and it was very emotional. In fact I never even saw the defeat of the Emperor, nor the ending from what I can remember.

 
Of course there was the part with the Ewoks and the chase of the Stormtroopers and such, but where that was in the movie, I cannot remember. Just that it is talked about and shown in images so many times that I know it was there. Also I don’t remember how Luke got a new Lightsaber…and I wouldn’t be able to tell you whether that was the end of Episode V or the beginning of Episode VI because it has been so long.

But, the part with Vader was always really touching…and I was actually kind of surprised that, as a villain, he never really scared me, but rather, he intrigued me…even as a child. But because I was so young, I can’t say that I identified with any of the characters at that moment in time. Nowadays I could easily point out whom I feel the most connected to out of all the episodes (Luke) with some of the trials they faced and things they had to endure. But, as a child, these were only characters to me…this was just a movie and held no deeper meaning to me other than the series was for mere entertainment and nothing more. Plus, my Big Brother loved these movies, so I had to watch them too, because I wanted to be just like him.

 
But nowadays, considering the fact that studying Jedi-Realism and becoming a Knight is just a fraction of my path and goal, things are much different than they were when I was 5-6 years old.

Creed 101: Exercise 4 & 5

Posted: October 5, 2014 in IJRS Courses

Exercise #4
“There is no death; there is The Force”

Consider all the things around you and see their flow with in the Force. Where did they come from? Where will they go? How is your relationship with them? Is it something you need to let go so it can transform into its next form? Is your relationship with those people and things around you ‘in the present?

 

Before I begin on this, I will explain how I see death. I have taken several things from my time spent living as a “Wiccan” and one of those things is the view I currently hold on death and the beyond. I believe in reincarnation, I believe that we are all souls that come from a divine force, and when we are reborn in a new life, we are on a road to perfection. Every birth, every new life is an experience so that we might gain knowledge of all things. Once we have experienced all things, our souls are perfect and we then return to the ultimate divine where we help shape the universe while other souls continue on their path to perfection.
So where;as for a time we are merely souls being reborn until we are perfect, once perfection is achieved, we return to The Force (The Divine). So I agree that there is no death, there is only the path leading up to perfection which will again make us a part of the great divine Force so that we might be the creator and voice of all while other souls carry out their own missions. It sounds complicated, and might even sound weird to some, but to me, it only makes sense.

 
Therefore…I always see things as they flow within The Force; animate or inanimate, I can feel their energy and know that somewhere they are alive. when I meditate or take the time to concentrate, I can see energy moving within all things, it looks like blood cells as they rush through a vein. I know that everything as it is now it merely in one form and will eventually take on another. So, it’s rather hard for me to write about this exercise as it is asking me observe things and question things that I do not have to question at all.
I can look at a chair and know that it came from a tree and where that tree came from and only imagine where it might have been, or where the chair will go after it has changed form again, whether it becomes sawdust or ash and how that will help spring up new life. As far as the people I meet and know already, while I do have the tendency to think on the past, I am not lost in it, and every reaction to them or with them is always in and about the present time, the here and now.

 
There is currently nothing in my life that needs to be let go of so that it might take on a new form. At least, none that I can think on at this very moment. Every interaction with anything or anyone at this current time is still playing out its purpose.
For example…just the other day my partner said she needed a break from what we were. Changing us from an official couple to mere friends. Of course, this is changing the form of who we are, how we react to one another, and it played out its course. Slowly she began to miss me, this new form was doing its part by reminding her that without me she is not happy even though things are complicated at times, and we sewed things back together and are slowly stitching things up. Not sure if that was the perfect example…but this exercise is rather frustrating because whereas I normally have something that I can pick apart and explain and analyze, there is nothing here that I can think of that I can even begin to discuss or even talk about here.

 
I almost feel rather disappointed as I was waiting for this stanza because out of everything the Jedi Code has to offer, this is the one thing I agree with most and yet the assignment seems so…’trivial’ to me? So strange?
Perhaps I just need to be posed this assignment or question in a different way or different light in order to fully understand it.

 
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Exercise Five: The Other Codes

Odan-Urr Version add-on “There is no chaos; there is harmony”

Assignment:
Look for some physical clutter in your life. When you see it, confront it. Tell yourself, ‘There is no chaos, there is harmony.’ And then work to find a home for everything in that pile of clutter. If it’s not serving a purpose, recycle it or throw it away. Keep telling yourself ‘There is no chaos there, is harmony.’ Once you have finished take some time to use the space and see how you feel.
Please take the time to record your thoughts and experiences on this in your journal.

 

 

This is actually a perfect assignment right now as it draws closer and closer to that time where I move back to the USA from Germany. In such a short time, so much has happened which has caused much chaos to enter my life, and I have had to tackle these issues one at a time in order to bring…well, ‘order’ back into my life. Or as the author of the course wrote: “Find a place for all the clutter in your life.”

 
Moving to another Country is stressful, especially when you are trying to do things as someone who needs help via the military but is a non-dependent because you are not married to the person you came to the Country for. So, naturally, things have been stressful.
The first bit of chaos came with getting my plane ticket. Originally the Army said that they could get me a ticker for around $300 and I could fly with my partner so long as we got the signature from the Commander. The people said this should not be an issue, but it was. The Commander said that it was too much liability and too much paperwork and refused to sign.

 

So, instead of paying $300 for a plane ticket back home, I had to pay $870, and it was my fault for not budgeting it because I just assumed everything would be okay. So that was a major flaw on my part. Naturally, I just took a deep breath and accepted it how it was. I knew that I should not have assumed things would work, and merely told myself there was no reason to be stressed. I had the money and would just save more on the next paycheck. Everything was going to be okay.

 

 

It was actually my partner that ended up getting the most stressed out after this little ordeal and I found that I was easily able to brush this off. To me, it was not a big thing, something I would not have been able to do over a year ago. A year ago I would have freaked out, cried and complained, but, I merely breathed in, thanked my partner for trying her best, bought my ticket for back home, and continued to be happy because I would soon be back on familiar soil.

 

 

More stress and clutter came with my moving…I had to ship my stuff back, and while this ended up working out great, there did come a point where we were not sure if the Army would be able to ship my things. We had to pull some strings and for awhile I was frantic. I lost sleep, barely ate because I had so much stuff I would either have to pay to ship or throw away. But eventually, I took action and came up with a plan B and made sure that no matter what, my things would get home.

 

 

The thing is, I do stress…but I don’t let the stress keep me from solving problems. I do not let it completely wreck me, and I continue to push forward, out of the shadows, into the light where things are clear and sunny. A deep breath and then the making of a plan is how I handle most things. Not only has moving been stressful, but as usual, my relationship is stressful. While originally I had plans of being married once home, those are not going to go through as planned. It has really messed up some other plans I had in place, making me have to rethink all the things I had mapped out before, it left things scrambled, and, it had me in pieces for a couple of weeks. t was only this week that I finally decided it was time to stop.

 
I could see that a lot of things that had been stressing me out were actually caused by myself (once I took the time to really lay down and analyze things). Laying down and collecting my thoughts, I could see the landslide effect happening as my actions caused a chain reaction of things to happen, all of them coming back to hurt me in the end.

 

 

But, once this was finally realized, I could calm myself down, and again, make a plan. It was time to clean up the clutter from the fallen pile and reorganize them again, stack them more neatly this time and hope things don’t fall. We are human, and I feel this is all we can ever do but to keep stacking things differently in hopes that they stand firm and steady, and ultimately they do not fall.
I agree that were we to say there cannot be chaos in the lives of a Jedi then not a single person could call themselves a Jedi. But it is also true that chaos leads to destruction, and therefore it has to be met with something to stop it in its tracks before it destroys ones body, ones mind; before it destroys that very person inside and out.

 

 

I’m not really sure what the exercise expected other than this…other than how I deal with stress. It said to clean the clutter and this is how I handle things. A deep breath, warm drink, some time in a dark room to think and relax, and then a plan. I will forever keep moving forward. I refuse to sit still and become stagnant.

 
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Creed 101: Exercise Three

Posted: July 15, 2014 in IJRS Courses

Exercise #3
“There is no passion ; there is serenity”

In your journal, make a list of 3 to 5 most important people, projects or objects in your life. What is it that you feel passionate about? These would be anyone or anything that comes first to mind when making decisions.

 

 

1. Tasmara
— As a partner, lover, I am in love with her, I am passionate about her, and would do anything for her. To me she is something of a challenge as she is always throwing obstacles at me, things in which I must overcome. She works with me towards obtaining the other things that I am truly passionate about. We have spoken about getting a house together, starting a family together, and she has even been paying my school loan while I have been overseas. I would say that at times I have been blinded by her…but as I grew older I started to notice that the choices I made were my own to control and that she had little to no influence over what I did.

 

 

2. My goals (career, home, a family)
— I always have goals, I am always setting short-term goals and always have a list of long-term goals. The long-term goals are generally what I am most passionate about as they take the most work and in the end, they hold the greatest reward (in my opinion). When moving to Germany, I crossed one long-term goal off my list which was to travel to a new Country, and now I am trying to focus next on my career. I would not say that these goals blind me to anything as they take so many things in order to obtain that I am constantly open to new and different things. Nothing gets sacrifiec by my working towards these goals and being passionate about them. The only harm they ever did was perhaps arguing with Taz because I might have made her feel a bit pressured in the past about settling down. But, all of that was resolved rather quickly.

 

 

3. My Path
—My Path is something that am passionate about because it defines me, it has been trail after trial, molding me into the person I am today. From a Padawan to a Darth in the Dark Side, this path has taken me many places. Have I ever been blinded? No. Does it distract me from other things? It does at times, but I would not call it blinded. Obviously my Jedi studies often suffer because I am more passionate about the things I have been working on within the Dark aspect of things. My Path includes the birth of my own Temple which does take away from my time spent at the Institute, same as my relationship takes me away from IJRS as well because I would never want to sit behind a computer when my girlfriend is over. Still…to say that I am blinded by the things that are helping me learn and grow, I think that is the wrong way to put it. While my studies at IJRS go neglected, it’s not at all something that has affected me in any negative way. I do these things at my leisure because I want to. I am not chained down to my laptop and feel I should never be forced to work on something when I do not feel up to it, especially something that is not a hueg part of my being.

 

 

4. My Happiness
—Happiness blinds many people. They will do anything to feel happy…and sometimes this heads down a destructive path with things such as alcohol and drugs. I will say that I am blinded by wanting to be happy, and will often do stupid things because of it. Video-games make me happy, and I will often sacrifice needed sleep just to stay up and play. YouTube makes me happy, and again, I sacrifice sleep and time I could be spending elsewhere watching YouTube rather than being productive. I have skipped work just to travel, I have bailed on a diet because ice-cream makes me happy. Silly things like that. I will do anything to have my happiness…and it can be destructive. Happiness can also be confused for obsession at times, and this too can cause a problem and blind people as well. I have some examples from the past, but, they are over and done with for over 5 years, and its best not to dig those up again. For now though, my want to make myself happy at all times only has minor negative effects and nothing that could not be controlled if I actually put the effort into it.

 

 

5. Empowerment
—Empowerment…accomplishment, that feeling of doing something and being stronger because of it. This is something I am passionate about. But, I don’t see it as a bad thing. Wanting to go out and learn new things, pick up new skills, take on a challenge and overcome it. Nothing gets left behind because of this, nothing gets shadowed over and forgotten…this helps me grow, this opens me up to new possibilities. This may one day help lead me to career, gives me more time with Taz, could be something I could teach my children, and it makes me happy. It’s like a burrito filled with all other things that I am passionate about and it helps me to better develop and define ‘me’.

 

 

Passion…can be described in numerous ways, and this idea that passion is blinding and bad is outdated to me. This fear that passion will turn someone to the Dark Side almost seems silly, and, while I agree that there should be serenity (while someone should always be at peace with themselves and aware at all time), there is a way to have serenity but still be passionate about something. Especially when it comes to love.
You can love someone but not be blinded by that love. Taz thinks my involvement with The Force is stupid and a waste of time, but that does not keep me from following this path. She may not like all the people that I talk to, but I do not stop talking to them. I do not give up my hopes and dreams of the future for her, and she does not define me and never will.

 

 

“Love doesn’t lead to the dark side. Passion can lead to rage and fear, and can be controlled… but passion is not the same thing as love. Controlling your passions while being in love… that’s what they should teach you to beware. But love itself will save you… not condemn you.”
―Jolee Bindo, to Revan

 

 

This code continues to state that there should not be one option, there should only be the other option…but to me, there should be an equal balance. Life is not without its experiences, and again I will say that to completely eradicate that one thing is to completely deny someone what it is like to be human. You are cheapening the life experience by taking away what is meant to be there as a challenge and stepping stone. This is not doing anyone a favor, this will only make them weak.

 

 

“If you seek to aid everyone that suffers in the galaxy, you will only weaken yourself… and weaken them. It is the internal struggles, when fought and won on their own, that yield the strongest rewards. You stole that struggle from them, cheapened it. If you care for others, then dispense with pity and sacrifice and recognize the value in letting them fight their own battles. And when they triumph, they will be even stronger for the victory.”
―Kreia to Meetra Surik

Creed 101: Exercise Two

Posted: July 15, 2014 in IJRS Courses

Exercise #2
“There is no ignorance; there is knowledge”

Over the next few days (as the Force moves you) pay close attention to when you or someone else asks you something and you do not know the answer. At that moment, tell yourself ‘There is no ignorance,there is knowledge.’
Then, if you can, consider taking some time and learning the answers. I suggest doing this a few times maybe 3 or 4 if you can. Again, it is up to your discretion. This exercise is an excellent example of how you can help yourself continue to grow in knowledge and with the Force.
If no one gives you an opportunity here are some examples:
How do you say ‘Hello’ in India, Egypt, New Zealand and Hawaii?
What do you do in a case of a choking pet?
Be sure to record your results in your journal.

 

 

If there is anything that I can connect to when it comes to the Jedi Code, it is this passage right here: “There is no ignorance; there is knowledge”. I am the type that never likes to be kept in the dark about things. While I understand that life has moments where things are meant to just ‘play out’ without an attempt to control the outcome, I also know that most of life and living requires action…and in order to have said-action or do said-action that takes knowledge. One of the ways in which and why we seek knowledge is via questions (whether asked by others or asked of ourselves).

 

After reading this passage, I was soon asked a question I did not know. My roommate (who is German) inquired on when I would be returning to the United States. At the time of his asking, I did not have an answer for him, I could not give him a firm answer because it depended on so many things. So, after explaining to him that I did not have an answer right away, I went back to my room and meditated on where my life was going, repeating this part of the stanza over and over again, until at last, I had to go to bed.

 

Sure enough, things started to unfold nicely over the next couple of weeks. My partner passed her weight-test so that she could stay in the Army. She was taken off the list for the move which would have otherwise kept her in German for the next couple of years. We found out that her new move date back to the US was in November and that she would now be sent to Oklahoma.
But, that still did not answer all of my questions. Sure this assured that I could at least go home by November if I wanted to go back to Indiana…but, if I wanted to be closer to my love, what then? While it was not a question asked by someone else, I figured I would put it here because this is what this passage is supposed to be about. The only reason I have been able to follow my partner is because I work for Amazon.com and it allows me to travel all over the world from warehouse to warehouse. Well, there is no facility in Oklahoma for me to transfer to…which made me look at a map of the USA to determine what my options would be.

 

In the end I was left with: Dallas, Texas or Coffeyville, Kansas — both would place me about 4 hours away from my partner. The next step was then asking what facilities might take me come November. I had to ask how to contact their HR department, then I had to explain my reasons for moving and the dates I wanted to go. I got rejected by all but 2 of the 4 facilities I applied for which then put into motion my internal transfer. While it was a lot of work, at last I got my answer which was my coming back to the good ‘ole USA in the middle of October at the earliest.
Still, I do not often get asked many questions that I have to look for an answer. Most of the time they are things I can give an answer to right away, like my opinion on a video game, questions about myself, or even questions about my Path and the courses I will be writing for a future temple-project. When I am asked a question that I do not know, then I am usually close enough to my laptop so that I can look up the answer straight away.

 

But, as far as me being the person to ask the question, that is a different matter. For me, knowledge is power and vice-versa. To not know something is a weakness (in my opinion). So, the minute a question enters my brain, I am compelled to find that answer else it gets in the way of sleep and sometimes even clouds my focus on other things. I am always asking questions because I always want to ‘know’. Whether the subject benefits me in any way or not, I would rather know than to someday run into a situation wishing I had that knowledge (and/or had learned in beforehand). I know it supposed to be a rather short-deal…so sorry for the spiel.

Creed 101: Exercise One

Posted: April 18, 2014 in IJRS Courses

Exercise #1
“There is No Emotion, There is Peace”

So, this exercise took me a lot longer than what I intended…but, I felt as though I was not at the point of which I wanted to be (I am most likely still not even close to there) and therefore, did not wish to post the assignment right away. There is no emotion…to let go of emotion is still such a foreign concept to me. Pushing something to the back of your mind is one thing, but, to obliterate it altogether is something else entirely, and, to me, sometimes it can be counted as counter-productive.
The emotions that we feel are meant to come to us as lessons. A Sith once taught me a lesson about emotions. His name was Miles, and he said that emotions were not meant to be released, but merely meant to be understood. Taking time to talk with your emotions as if they were pets or children would allow you to clarify why such emotions were happening, and once the emotions were understood…you would have clarity, you would have this inner peace and control, and you would be able to focus then at the task at hand and progress…only this time, you were progressing with a higher sense of knowledge about yourself and about other things than you had before.
So…I tried to mix such lessons. To let go of emotion (to me) is to fail to learn from said-emotion. To miss out on an opportunity for spiritual growth and for ultimate understanding. These last two weeks have been perfect for this assignment because, right now, there is much going on in my life.
As most know, I am currently living overseas because my partner is military…and, she might be getting out of the military much sooner than planned. Take that in account with the stress from my job, also with the rising costs of things, mix that in with relationship troubles and fears of the future (which still plague me to this day) and you have things which need to be conquered…but not through pushing them back for another day in order to bring to me to the present…but through understanding so that they might never occur ever again and I can have that sense of clarity that I need to overcome similar things in the future. Make sense?
So yes…every time I said that there was no emotion…I was reminding myself that emotions are both a strength and weakness. But, when emotion is a weakness, that weakness must be turned around into something which can improve myself as a human being. Think of a situation in battle…if a soldier panics, they will forget what they have learned and they might get themselves or others killed. Therefore, soldiers are taught to remain calm in any situation for their own benefit and to save the lives of others during a hectic situation.
Every time I said there was no emotion…I brought myself to the present. Reminded myself of all the things currently that I had going for me which remedied my fears, and reinforced my goals. Every time I said there was peace, I made sure to smile, because with anger comes no progress…just brooding and more stress. With a smile, I was breaking through that stress-barrier and reminding it that I was boss. By bringing myself to the here and now as someone strong and determined, I was brought a moderate reprieve from my troubles.
But again…I still have a long way to go.
So, I will be journaling more on this (hopefully from a week-to-week basis at the least).

Creed 101: Beginning Exercise

Posted: March 28, 2014 in IJRS Courses

Beginning Exercise:
There is no emotion, there is peace
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge.
There is no passion, there is serenity.
There is no death, there is The Force.

Assignment:
To begin learning about the Code, take some time (I will not tell you how much–that is up to you and the Force) to read over a few times this version of the Jedi Code. When you are ready, record your thoughts on it. First over all–how does it make you feel when you contemplate it? Maybe it doesn’t make you feel anything? There are no right or wrong answers to this exercise.
Next, take each line and record how YOU would define its meaning. Again, there are no wrong or right answers. The point of this exercise is to let you see where you are at the beginning of this course.
Please post your findings(and all future assignments)in your Training Journal and on the Creed 101 training area of the IJRS Forums. Once you have done that task, you will be ready to move onto the first lesson.

 

Answer:
When I read the Jedi-Code over to myself and in my head, it does nothing…it does not speak to me, does not make me rethink my life or the way it is being lived. But, perhaps this is because there is a different code for the Jedi that I think fits me more personally, and works best with what I am all about. This code almost seems like it is trying to cancel something out of existence…to erase the first thing so that only the second thing remains.

Perhaps I am taking it all wrong and it is merely saying that in Jedi-Realism the first thing does not exist, but the second thing does…and it is not really speaking about reality itself.
Because…going to into the second part of the assignment and dissecting each line of the code:
‘There is no emotion, there is peace.’
To be taken literally would mean that there should be no emotion in this world…that there should only be peace. But, as most know, I am a Shadow aspect in the Force…a Dark Jedi, and to me, this notion is unrealistic. Emotion is all part of being human, and humanity…the act of being human is not just something that we can throw away.

Peace is also something I consider to be a dream and nothing more. As I have explained countless times…the Light cannot exist without the Dark. Good does not exist without Evil…for, without Evil, how would we be able to define what is good anyways? Life cannot exist without War, for War is what keeps the world in balance, in check. Power struggles, terrorism, they are all things that are inevitable.
If every person in the world could just take what they need (and took nothing more), then everyone could get by with enough to survive and be happy. But, there will always be someone who wants more, who feels as though they deserve more, and they will take more than their share, knowing that someone else might go without. It is something we cannot change, as that is how the world works. I’m not saying that there might not be calms in this world, breaks in which harmony can be achieved for a set time…but something will always come to challenge the Light, Evil will always come to test the might of the Good.
If this applied strictly to Jedi-Realism and not reality itself…then it would make sense that Jedi are weary of emotion for emotions can cause bouts of doubt and weakness. The emotions we have can lead people to the Dark Side, just negative emotions and feelings in general, and thus, a Jedi cannot have these emotions, must not feel these emotions, but be at constant peace with themselves and ultimately aim for the peace of the World.
‘There is no ignorance, there is knowledge’.
To be taken literally as in accordance to reality, this might just be true. There is not a single person in this world that is un-knowing of something, and therefore, in some way, everyone is knowledgeable…but, we also know that ignorance (as more of an insult) is something that occurs in reality. There are ignorant people out there, and no shred of what they might ‘know’ makes them anything more or less of this.
But in accordance to Jedi-Realism, Ignorance cannot exist, for a Jedi’s power is through knowing and through understanding. I can relate to this, for knowledge, to me, is power. To know an enemy is to defeat an enemy, and to know something is to overcome it.
‘There is no passion, there is serenity.’
The definition of passion is a “barely controllable emotion”…and that exists in everyone. Passion is a human experience that we all go through at some point. Whether that passion be in love of a person, or love of an art, or perhaps it is through other means that we find this ‘passion’…but it is there. To say that it cannot exist in reality, is again, to try and throw away one’s humanity.
Even in Jedi-Realism, to barely makes sense to me why passion cannot exist within the Light aspect of The Force. Passion does not have to be a negative thing. There are many positive examples of passion (like I mentioned before…being the love of a person or an art). Yes, passion can be destructive, and yes, that would mean opening the floodgates of emotion…but either way, it’s the way in which you harness this passion which should truly matter on its existence.

Serenity exists in reality though it is harder for most people to harness, use, and come to a state of mind with. Defined as: “the state of being calm, peaceful, and untroubled.” Is harder for humans to do because life is full of stressers. It would make sense that those in Jedi-Realism would strive for this, as a calm and clear mind is a powerful mind (same as they say a focused mind is a deadly mind).
So, at this point, I do not believe the Code is speaking literally, for such things as passion could not be cancelled out of existence. Not forever, not throughout an entire race. Ignorance could be dealt with (perhaps)…but not emotion in its purest form.
‘There is no death, there is The Force’.
This last verse all comes down to your particular beliefs, and really, it could mean anything. We do not know what happens after we draw our last breath. Whether it be Heaven or Hell, whether it be Nothingness or Reincarnation, no one knows until they are there. Me, personally…my views come from my time studying Wicca.
I’m a firm believer that we are on a mission to become perfect souls through multiple experiences. We die, and then we are reborn as someone/something else, over-and-over so that we might experience all things. In one life, on might be a cop so that they learn of justice and the law, the next life…they are the robber that robs a bank, keeps a hostage, so that they might learn greed, and injustice. As souls we learn both good and evil, and, once our journey is complete, we return then to the Divine (or in this case The Force). The End.
So…in reality, you would never be able to cancel out death, for death is taken different ways among everyone, and face it…death is something that happens. Whether that is defined merely as a heart stopping or a soul leaving a body, the meaning is personal and varies. In Jedi-Realism and in speaking of Jedi in general…they would belief that death does not exist because all things are part of The Force while living, and therefore even after ‘dying’ one would continue to go on through The Force, and therefore could not be considered ‘dead’ as it is still in existence.
Either way, this is just how I see it at the moment, and look forward to what these lessons might teach me as I progress further on.