Friday, January 1, 2010
Last night, I watched Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (Yes, the worst of the Star Wars titles), while trying to fall asleep. The movie came to the point, when Padme Amidala is in her room, sleeping, while Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker kept watch. Kenobi observes that Skywalker still was not sleeping well. Skywalker reported that he had been dreaming about his mother and that he would prefer to dream about Amidala, stating “Just being around her again is… intoxicating.” Kenobi retorted, “Be mindful of your thoughts, Anakin; they betray you. You’ve made a commitment to the Jedi Order; a commitment that is not easily broken.” Kenobi’s retort catalyzed a thought of my own, Are Jedi supposed to be chaste?
Take into account the time frame. Firstly, ten years have passed since Skywalker has seen Amidala. Secondly, Skywalker is a 20-year-old male. His love for Amidala, which was a residual from his first meeting with her, is merely puppy love. When he sees her again, his initial reaction could be love at first sight, which at everyone’s first meeting where this happens is a physical attraction lust at a basic level). Skywalker confirms his lust by reference to the word ‘ intoxicating’, implying the physical and heady effects. If these theories are a given, then the assumption is that Kenobi was referring to Skywalker’s lust betraying him.
The other given is that the Jedi are not supposed to possess objects or people. Lust is not possession. So, a Jedi cannot take a spouse. Though, they do seem to be able to have companions and friends, given the whole Padawan, master and comrade aspect. Mixing all of this together, one might expect that a Jedi must be celibate.
If being celibate was part of a Jedi’s oath and this is George Lucas’s concept, then he really did not think the concept thoroughly. The whole introduction of the existence of Midi-chlorians makes the dogma of Jedi celibacy impractical. Midi-chlorians are intelligent microscopic organisms that live in all cells; however, some beings are more saturated with Midi-chlorians than others. The more Midi-chlorians in a life form, the more receptive they are to the Force. Because not all beings are Jedi, then reasonably, a person can conclude that the Jedi bodies must create an environment that promotes Midi-chlorian existence and production. In that case, the Jedi should promote reproduction among themselves. Jedi do come in both sexes; Princess Leia Organa was studying to be a Jedi with Luke Skywalker in books that took place after the movies.
A better policy for the Jedi Order would be to have a breeding program like the Bene Gesserit Mothers of Dune and the Psi-corps of Babylon 5. Kenobi strengthens this position with his words in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, “The Emperor knew as I did that if Anakin were to have any offspring, they would be a threat to him.” Perhaps if they had had a breeding program, Emperor Palpatine (then Chancellor) would not have been able to issue order 66 and have all the Jedi destroyed. Breeding toward a stronger Jedi, may have created Jedi who could have seen the circumstances of Order 66 coming, or even deter the plans of the Sith.
The fact of the matter is that Lucas should have left the Force as Kenobi and Yoda described it in Episodes IV and V: The Force is a mystical energy that binds everything together. The explanation conveys that the Force is a concept to be studied without distractions. This concept would give the Jedi the same motivation not to have sexual relations as monks of other Orders. The use of the Midi-chlorians as a scientific backup killed the whole reason for the Jedi Celibacy.