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For other uses of this and similar words, see Jedi (disambiguation).

The Jedi are members of a fictional monastic non-theistic order, referred to as the Holy Order of the Jedi Knights in the Star Wars galaxy created by George Lucas. They are an ancient monastic peacekeeping organization known for their observance of The Force,[1] specifically the "light side" of the force, and the rejection of the "dark side" of the Force, as well as the dark side's adherents, the Sith.

They were named after the jidaigeki genre of Japanese films.[2]


[edit] Formation

The Jedi were initially formed at approximately the same time as the Old Republic, 25,000 years before the time frame of the movies.

However, soon after its formation, several Jedi left the order to follow the path of the Dark Side, the first of many schisms.

[edit] Governance

[edit] Movies

The Jedi Order was ruled by a board of 12 members called Jedi Council which was located on the planet of Coruscant during the prequel trilogy. The council represented a gathering of great minds which acted as a governing body for the order as well as a martial advisory board for the Old Republic Senate.

During the original trilogy, the Council no longer exists, as most of its members had either perished during Order 66 in Episode III, or went into exile to escape persecution from the Empire.

[edit] Expanded Universe

Within the Expanded Universe of Star Wars media, the primary Jedi Council on Coruscant is the main, but not the only, Jedi governing body. At one point approximately 4,000 years prior to the movies, there was also a Jedi council on Dantooine. After the movies, Luke Skywalker eventually reestablished the Jedi Order and creates something called the Masters' Council.

During times of great danger, the Jedi also engaged in direct democracy through massive gatherings known as conclaves in order to discuss the issues at hand and come to a collective conclusion on their way to solve those issues.

The Sith can trace their roots back from heretical Jedi who followed the path of the Dark Side towards the homeworld of the Sith race.

This Sith Empire invaded the Old Republic 5,000 years before the movie in what was known as the Great Hyperspace War.

Over time, the Dark Jedi and the Sith intermingled until eventually the word Sith stopped referring to the race but rather the ideology of the Dark Jedi, and the Sith began to come from various races and planets united by the goal of eradicating the Jedi and the pursuit of power through the Dark Side.

[edit] Equipment

Within the Star Wars universe, the Jedi are usually portrayed as dressed in simple robes and carrying specialized field gear for their missions. The most notable instrument wielded by a Jedi is the lightsaber.

Lightsabers are used by both Jedi and Sith. Jedi commonly wielded blue and green lightsabers in the movies, while the Sith tended to wield red ones. Jedi Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) wielded a unique purple lightsaber.

In the Expanded Universe of Star Wars media, there were a vast variety of lightsaber colors. In Knights Of The Old Republic, the colors signified the Jedi's specialization.

[edit] Jedi ranks

Members of the order progressed through four to six tiers of rank, at times referred to as levels.

  • Jedi Youngling : A Jedi Youngling is a Jedi who is learning to control the force and how to wield a lightsaber. The title of Jedi Youngling is the first part of a Jedi training and when he, she, and or it is old enough they will go to next leave of training. Younglings were seen training with Jedi Grand Master Yoda in a scene from Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones.
  • Jedi Padawan: A Youngling that successfully completes their respective level of training undergoes Padawan apprentice training under the tutelage of a Jedi Knight or Jedi Master. In a rite of passage, Padawans must build their own lightsabers as a final test. Darth Vader told Luke Skywalker that his skills were complete upon building a new lightsaber, which is the final test before the trials to Knighthood.
In the Old Republic, Padawans usually wore braids in their hair which were removed once they attained knighthood.
  • Jedi Knight: Disciplined, experienced Jedi may become full-fledged Jedi Knights once they have completed "the trials", which are usually intensified tests, biological and otherwise, of candidates' skills, knowledge and dedication.The three tests are usually known as The Trial of Skill, The Trial of Spirit, and the Trial of Knowledge. Master Yoda gave his apprentice Luke Skywalker the trial of confronting Darth Vader for a second time in order to become a full-fledged Knight.
Occasionally, performing an extraordinary (usually heroic) act can earn a Padawan learner Jedi Knight status, such as when Obi-Wan Kenobi defeated the Sith Apprentice Darth Maul. Jedi Knight is the most common rank of Jedi.[citation needed]
  • Jedi Master: A Jedi Knight may become a Master after successfully training a Padawan learner to Knight status. Though this is the most common manner, it is not always the case. If the council sees that a Jedi Knight has become more powerful and has gained more knowledge and discipline in the Force, then they can be nominated by one or more council members to take the trials again.[citation needed]
  • Jedi Council Member: When a Jedi Council Member vacates its seat, the council looks for an exemplary Jedi Master to fill the empty position. Presiding Council Members elect prospective candidates when openings become available. According to the Dorling Kindersley guide to Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, some members were permanent members (like Master Yoda and Master Windu), while the rest served limited terms, after which they stepped down and another member would be elected to the Jedi council. With the exception of Anakin Skywalker, all council members require the status of Jedi Master prior to entering the council.
  • Jedi Grand Master: Formally "Grand Master of the Jedi Order," only the highest-ranking Jedi Masters took the title. The title of Grand Master/Supreme Master is merely a theoretical title given by Jedi Masters to a certain Master who has been most wise among other masters in the council, as with Master Yoda. Also as observed in the New Jedi Order when they appointed Luke Skywalker a Jedi Grand Master as he was the last Jedi taught by Obi-wan Kenobi and Master Yoda, the last members of the Old Council. The Jedi Grand Master/Supreme Master does not enjoy any greater privilege than any council members because the council members also have a vote in any issues presented by the council. The Grand Master was apparently the "first among equals" of the Jedi High Council, or the later Masters' Council. Yoda, Mace Windu, and Luke Skywalker were known to have been Grand Masters.

[edit] Religion

[edit] Movies

The Jedi hold a religious reverence to The Force, approached through meditation, civic service and learning similar to that of Buddhist monks, particularly those of the Shaolin Monastery.

[edit] Real world

One of the enduring influences the Star Wars saga has had is the idea of the fictional Jedi values being interpreted in a modern philosophical path or religion.[3] Over half a million people throughout the world declared themselves as Jedi on their census forms, which was considered to be a practical joke and may not reflect the real number of Jedi in the countries concerned.

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ "The Jedi Order". The Official Star Wars Website. Retrieved on 2007-03-24. 
  2. ^ Star Wars: The Legacy Revealed. The History Channel. 2007-05-28. about 90 minutes in.
  3. ^ Woolley, Jamie. "A New Religion". BBC News. 

[edit] External links

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