Keep the Basics at Heart

Written by Kevin Trout, originally posted on Jedi365

Bruce Lee once said, “Before I studied the art, a punch to me was just like a punch, a kick just like a kick. After I learned the art, a punch was no longer a punch, a kick no longer a kick. Now that I’ve understood the art, a punch is just like a punch, a kick just like a kick. The height of cultivation is really nothing special. It is merely simplicity; the ability to express the utmost with the minimum. It is the halfway cultivation that leads to ornamentation.

I don’t think I can really express it any better. What I can do is remind those new to the Path that this applies well to the Jedi Way. When i first started the Path was exciting and big and the more I learned the more complex it seemed. Application is always the difficult part, but once you have that – once you have learned the technique – it becomes a very simple thing. Now after two decades it is simply a thing I do. It is how I live. It is not a complex thing, but just a thing.

Many people asked, how should I respond to this person or this event? The answer of, “as a Jedi” may seem useless to non-Jedi, but really it is a reminder. The Jedi Way is not complex, it is much harder to memorize the Periodic Table than the core guidelines of the Jedi Path. The difficulty is often the Jedi Way is simply not what our base human nature wants. And the initial question repeats itself – is this how I want to live my life? Do I find this lifestyle beneficial and productive? If the answer remains yes then we must remember a favorite Yoda quote – “Try not. Do or do not. There is no try.” Or the Nike slogan – Just Do It. Once you have determined this path is for you then it is simply a question of adhering to it or not.

Overcome Aggression, Arrogance, Recklessness, Defeatism, these are not complex things. Halfway through the journey? Yes, they seem very complicated, they have great depth to them. Yet the more you live by these concepts the more you learn and realize they really are simple. Keep the Basics at Heart. They serve as a valid foundation for growth.

The Jedi Code is as basic you can get for the Jedi Way.
Emotion, yet Peace.
Ignorance, yet Knowledge.
Passion, yet Serenity.
Chaos, yet Harmony.
Death, yet the Force.

When I first started the Code was just a guideline. After I learned the Jedi Way the Jedi Code was a deep pool of reflection, contemplation, and complex thought. Now that I understand the Jedi Path the Jedi Code is just a guideline. Don’t get stuck in the over-thinking. Simply keep the basics at heart. To end as we begun, with a nice quote. “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” – Albert Einstein

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