Jedi are the guardians of peace in the galaxy.
Jedi use their powers to defend and protect, never to attack others.
Jedi serve others rather than ruling over them, for the good of the galaxy.
Jedi seek to improve themselves through knowledge and training.
-From The Jedi Code
The philosophy known as The Jedi Code was created to keep young Jedi students from being drawn to The Dark Side. It was taught by the Jedi Council to hundreds of thousands of Jedi throughout the ages, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Master Yoda taught parts of it to Luke Skywalker, and Luke Skywalker passed on what he had learned to his students at the Jedi Academy.
At its heart, The Jedi Code provides simple instructions for living in touch with The Force. A Jedi never uses The Force to gain wealth or personal power. Instead, a Jedi uses The Force to find knowledge and enlightenment. Anger, fear, aggression, and other negative emotions lead to The Dark Side, so Jedi are taught to act only when they are at peace with The Force.
Jedi are encouraged to find nonviolent solutions whenever possible. They should act from wisdom, using persuasion and council instead of Force Powers and violence. When all else fails, or to save a life, a Jedi must sometimes resort to battle in order to resolve a particularly dangerous situation. Though combat may sometimes be the best answer, it should never be the first option a Jedi explores.
Because of their connection to The Force, the Jedi sense it's flow and drawn upon its energy. While doing so, a Jedi sometimes perceives Disturbances in the Force. These disturbances can be explained by the presence of powerful Force-users in the area, or intense emotions that cry out in The Force, such as when the life of the planet Alderaan was extinguished by The Death Star. There are even times when such disturbances result in feelings of urgency or promotions that spur a Jedi to a place or situation where they are needed. This aspect and manifestation of The Force is covered by the Use the Force skill.
Additional The Jedi Code Edit
Reference Book: Star Wars Saga Edition Jedi Academy Training Manual
See also: Philosophy
While The Jedi Code dictates a number of issues relating to understanding and mastering The Force, it is not entirely about that. A Jedi must feel The Force to know it, and ancient texts and rules cannot substitute for that experience. At the same time, a Jedi's social behavior cannot be learned by applying The Force to it. The Jedi Code also gives a set of expectations and guidelines by which a Jedi must conduct themselves. By following the Code, anyone can open up and allow The Light Side of The Force to flow freely through them and gain a better understanding of the universe and everything around them.
A closer examination of The Jedi Code helps to provide some insight not only into the way Jedi behave but also into the way following such strictures helps to foster a way of life conductive to averting the temptations of The Dark Side. The Code is categorized into three subjects: self-discipline, responsibility, and public service.
Self-discipline is one of the key factors of Jedi behavior, and many lessons taught to The Jedi from a very young age focus on this basic doctrine. At first, the lessons are simple and no different than the lessons taught to other children throughout the galaxy. But as the young Jedi grows, the lessons increase in complexity to emphasize the importance of a disciplined life.
- Conquer Arrogance: A Jedi is taught that they are no better than another being who cannot touch The Force. A Jedi is not a Jedi simply because of their strong connection to The Force; they are a Jedi because somebody taught them to be one.
- Conquer Overconfidence: As young Jedi pupils learn of their Force-using abilities, they start to take on the behavior that they can do anything with that power. Jedi instructors teach these students to realize their limits so that they can accurately measure how far they can go, as well as understand their own limitations.
- Conquer Defeatism: Possibly the greatest enemy a Jedi must face is the unshakable belief that nothing can be accomplished, regardless of the size of the task. A Jedi should plan for success before contemplating failure. Planning to fail increases the chance to fail, and expecting to lose encourages one to put forth insufficient effort.
- Conquer Stubbornness: A Jedi who focuses too much on a single goal or perspective loses sight of other possibilities, including ones that might yield better results. A Jedi must learn that staying on one path or clinging to one point of view can be costly. A Jedi must keep their mind open and not be afraid to change with the situation.
- Conquer Recklessness: Young Jedi always seem too anxious to master their Lightsabers and charge into battle without thinking ahead and developing some form of plan. These Jedi lack self-restraint. Acting impulsively has many times led to the loss of life or limb and placed easily obtained goals out of reach. A Jedi must learn to pace themselves at all times, be aware of unseen dangers and obstacles, and not tumble headlong into them.
- Conquer Curiosity: All people, no matter how public their lives are entitled to their privacy. A Jedi who pokes into somebody's business unnecessarily not only invades an individual's private life but also brings shame upon The Jedi for acting so rudely and creating distrust. Using The Force to do so only complicates matters further. The Force does not exist to serve one's curiosity.
- Conquer Aggression: For those less experienced in the ways of The Force, knowing the difference between attack, defense, and aggression does not come easily. A Jedi can attack and even kill without aggression, especially if they are calm, at peace, and not filled with anger or hatred. However, killing one's opponent should not become a common act, and a Jedi must explore every alternative before employing lethal force.
- Conquer External Loyalties: A Jedi is free to have connections with others outside of the Order, but divided loyalties can compromise a Jedi's effectiveness. Other loyalties can distract them from the task at hand and cause undue hardship for others. For this reason, The Jedi Order recruits students at a very young age and actively discourages relationships early in life that can create problems in the future. The Order also prohibits marriage without special permission from the High Council. A Jedi's loyalties should lie with The Force, The Jedi Order, the Republic, and themselves, in that order.
- Conquer Materialism: Like external loyalties, possessions can also be a distraction. A Jedi doesn't need to lead a ascetic life, but they learn to travel light, carrying with them only the bare essentials. Very few Jedi own more than what they can carry.
Once the ideals of self-discipline are learned, a Jedi becomes more open to The Light Side of The Force and can more successfully listen to its will. In addition, a Jedi can begin taking responsibility for their actions. Any Jedi that does not take responsibility for their actions lacks the discipline expected of them as a member of The Jedi Order.
- Practice Honesty: Honesty is the first responsibility of The Jedi, and recognizing its importance is vital to becoming a valued member of the Order. Although certain situations might require a Jedi to stretch the truth or create falsehoods within a particular situation, a Jedi must remain honest with themselves, their Master, and the Council. Continually creating lies or subjecting others to delusions invites suspicion and incites anger from others upon discovery of the truth.
- Honor Your Promises: A Jedi that makes a promise should be prepared to follow through with that promise or make amends, if necessary. One who makes promises that they do not intend to keep creates dishonesty and is less likely to be trusted.
- Honor Your Padawan: Every Jedi Master that takes a Padawan under their wing has a responsibility toward helping that pupil complete their training. A Padawan should be treated with dignity and respect. A Master should not reprimand their Padawan in front of others, but thy should commend them in public when they do something worthy of praise. Doing this helps build their confidence and helps improve the relationship between the Master and their apprentice.
- Honor Your Master: Likewise, a Padawan should honor their Master at all times. Although disagreements might occur, taking it to the point of argument is not wise. When dealing with others apart from their Master, a Padawan should speak only when spoken to. At all other times, the Padawan should wait for their Master to address the issue. By doing so, the Master will not have to worry about the need to apologize for their apprentice's behavior.
- Honor the Jedi Council: Within The Jedi Order, the High Council is the final authority in all matters. However, it cannot watch over every single Jedi in the galaxy. Therefore, a Jedi dispatched on a mission represents The Jedi Order and the Council through their words and actions. At the same time, the Council must answer for what the Jedi says and does during their mission, and putting the Council in a difficult situation brings dishonor upon its members.
- Honor the Jedi Order: A Jedi's words and actions represent the Order as a whole. Positive words are deeds reflect positively, while negative ones damage the Order's reputation. Billions of people inhabit the galaxy, and only a small fraction of them have ever encountered a Jedi. The words and deeds of a single Jedi often create a first (And often lasting) impression of the Order as a whole.
- Honor the Law: The Jedi Order was appointed by The Galactic Republic to be the protectors of peace and justice throughout the galaxy. As the Republic's enforcers of the law, The Jedi must also be bound by that same law. Any Jedi that is sent out to perform missions for the Republic must strive to avoid breaking the law. When venturing into areas of space outside the Republic's jurisdiction, a Jedi must exercise extreme care, for local governments might operate differently than the Republic, and an incident in which the Jedi breaks local laws might cause delays in resolving the situation through Republic channels.
- Honor Life: Since life is what strengthens The Light Side of The Force, honoring life in all forms is one of the highest priorities of The Jedi Order. Care must be taken to protect life and avoid unnecessary death, for killing someone gives strength to The Dark Side of The Force. If a situation arises where a life must be taken after all other options have been contemplated, a Jedi should make sure that the reason is justified. Typically, this should be done in self-defense or the defense of others incapable of defending themselves. A Jedi should never assume that the taking of a life is no cause for concern. Once a Jedi does not care about commiting murder, then they have begun walking down the path to The Dark Side.
Public Service Edit
Even as The Jedi Order strives to expand its knowledge of The Force, it also exists to serve the public's needs. If The Jedi did not have the ability to use The Force, they would still serve as protectors of peace and justice, for doing so is one of the main reasons why the Order was appointed by the Republic. The fact that Jedi can and do use The Force merely accentuates the principle of serving the general public.
Many of the ideals set forth for public service meld easily with promotion of The Light Side of The Force, but one must carefully weigh their options when seeking to uphold these ideals to make sure that as few people as possible are adversely affected by doing so.
- Duty to the Republic: Despite misconceptions held by some of the populace, The Jedi Order is not a part of The Galactic Republic. Nevertheless, The Jedi serve the Republic to uphold its laws and protect its citizens. When they are not needed, they are asked to stand aside, which The Jedi willingly do. This long-standing arrangement between the two organizations was created long ago, for reasons that have been long forgotten.
- Render Aid: In conjunction with promoting the ideals of The Light Side of The Force, all Jedi endeavor to provide aid to those in need whenever possible. However, a Jedi should not forego their other ideals to do so.
- Defend the Weak: A Jedi should defend those that are unable to defend themselves. At the same time, a Jedi must be aware that what might seem to be oppression in one culture might not necessarily be so in another. The morals and ethics of other cultures need to be carefully considered before taking action, lest a Jedi insinuate themselves into a situation where their help is not desired.
- Provide Support: Although a Jedi toils to help others in need, they must sometimes suspend their wishes and let others impart assistance instead, even if the Jedi could perform the act more quickly or easily. The Jedi should assist only as the situation requires, offer advice upon request, warn when necessary, and argue if proper reason fails.