I don’t condone blowing up planets or killing younglings. But I think Star Wars fans need to acknowledge the Point Of View (POV) that distorts audiences in overlooking the Jedi provoking the Sith.
I want to begin this blog-turned-research-paper with an analysis of the philosophy of the Sith and why it makes more sense. I will then explore the fallen angel (Jedi, whatever), Anakin Skywalker, and his pull to ‘the dark side’ as a symptom of the Jedi being self-serving and negligent of children. Afterwards, I’ll briefly dissect why conflicted men are so damn attractive.
The code of the Sith is as follows:
Peace is a lie. There is only Passion. Through Passion I gain Strength. Through Strength I gain Power. Through Power I gain Victory. Through Victory my chains are Broken. The Force shall free me.
Not only are the Sith more individualistic, but the code resonates more to someone who has endured grievances and loss, and have used their pain for ambition instead of suppression. Now if we look at the first line in the Jedi code:
There is no emotion, there is peace.
No emotion? What happens when we suppress our emotion? It comes out as something more destructive. The Jedi, therefore, are breeding evil instead of accepting that some of us are more emotionally unstable than others. Instead of seeing emotion as a threat, it would work to everyone’s benefit to train the more emotional instead of curse them off as evil and doomed for the dark side. What kind of human tells a teenager that “fear leads to anger, and anger leads to hate, and hate leads to suffering?” The answer is: Not a human, but a Yoda. If Yoda would just tell Anakin “I’m sorry you’re fearful, but fear is blocking your true potential and we want to see what is making you so fearful.” The only way to rid emotions is to feel them, not suppress them (Shout out to Dr. Nina--still working on this). Passion is what fuels art. Passion is the essence of love and philosophy. The Jedi code is full of idealism, where as the Sith code is more realistic. When you resist and compartmentalize passion and emotion, they grow from something beautiful to something destructive.
I do believe the Sith code allows for an embracement of freedom and power--and if they didn’t have so many unsolved psychological matters that are rooted from suppression and daddy issues, the potential to be healthy, secular thinkers in the Star Wars universe is certainly there. Because the Jedi are out to silence these overly emotional beings, the Sith have begun to utilize the need for passion and power in a more violent manner.
I remember in one of my lectures entitled Three Act Structure for Prose Writers, Luke Skywalker’s endeavors in Star Wars Episode IV was used to teach grad students about a character’s inciting event that leads them to believe in the cause (think R2 showing the hologram of Leia reciting the words “help me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope”) or Luke’s low point when he watched Darth Vader kill Kenobi in a duel.
So while this lecture is going on, I couldn’t help but think, Luke Skywalker’s POV is all we’re ever going to know. Audiences will only see the Sith from the perspective of the Jedi with evil (but epic) John Williams music playing in the background. I realized that audiences may not know Star Wars all too well. Galactic domination can’t be the goals of the Sith, if the Sith code ends with the force leading to absolute freedom. Is it possible that they just want freedom from the Jedi? Are the Jedi really just overly ambitious lunatics who want to cockblock the Sith? If space is ever expanding, who’s following who? And most importantly, why didn’t the Star Wars franchise add black holes?
Exhibit A: Young Anakin Skywalker
The Jedi took young Anakin from his mother because he was the chosen one. Afterwards, his mother was sold off to slavery and died. You may think: But Aahoo, Anakin wanted to go off with Qui-gon to become a Jedi. But any healthy minded adult human understands that an eight year old has no ability to make stable decisions on their own.
His anger in Episode II resulted in the deliverance of that ever so infamous speech: “I killed them. I killed them all. They're dead, every single one of them...I HATE THEM.”
This whole mess was caused by none other than the Jedi. This seems to be the pattern in the Star Wars universe: the Jedi wanting to solve problems THEY CAUSED which in this case is Darth Vader. Why didn’t the Jedi help Anakin’s mother? Is it because they might actually be self serving?
And when the Jedi Council kept rejecting Anakin to show his true potential, they attacedk his emotion of fear. So can we really blame Anakin when he found his new parent figure that is Senator Palpatine? And don’t forget that it was the Sith who saved Anakin after Obi-Wan took his limbs in that volcanic fight (another John Williams masterpiece--I think the song is Battle of the Heros).
Exhibit B: Contradictory
Remember when I mentioned the first line of the Jedi code: There is no emotion, there is peace.
How do you connect with the force? By searching with your feelings. The Jedi are birthing Sith through confusion. Don't have emotion, but you must feel in order to gain the powers of the force. Some students will therefore have more power with the force because they were raised to retain so much emotion. What did you expect?
On the case of conflicted men:
Anakin Skywalker was the reason to my sexual awakening at 12 years old. I liked his ambition, his excitement for life, how daring he was. At 27, I realized that it was his confliction that somehow made him so appealing. Conflicted men want something. Their ambition has taken over their every being--and they are torn between what everyone thinks they should do and what they want to do.
Overly ambitious men also tend to be more confident, and (drumroll please) nice. They appreciate a woman with their own ambition and interests, and don’t have the habit of meshing their life entire life with their girlfriends. If the Star Wars Universe had Instagram, I’m pretty sure Anakin or Padme wouldn’t document how much they loved each other. And if anyone wants to mention Anakin force-choking Padme, let me just say I don’t condone choking your pregnant girlfriend. And I’m not defending him or anything but he literally thought that Padme sided with Obi-Wan to kill him.
So these Sith men that the Jedi consider conflicted are actually just ambitious and were never allowed to explore their emotions.
You’re an enigma, Star Wars.
Song recommendation: Across the Stars - John Williams. Just stab my heart with a dagger. It’s so romantic.