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What People Believe: Jediism

24th August 2012

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When someone mentions Jedis the first thing you’ll probably think of is Star Wars.

Although it was how Jediism originated, believers point out that the characters in the film are fictional but there are religious truths that can be seen in the Jedi’s and the force - George Lucas’s concept of Jedi’s was influenced by Buddhism and Daoism.

So, let's not dismiss Jediism too quickly. In the 2001 census 390,127 people in England and Wales listed Jedi as their religion - making it the fourth largest religion cited. 

The basics of Jediism are as follows... 

  • Key principles are peace, justice, love, learning and the use of abilities for good.
  • Liberal beliefs. Jedis believe in trying to achieve a culture that does not discriminate people because of their gender, race, age and sexual orientation.
  • Democracy is important within religious structures as well as in political bodies but that the church and state should be separate.
  • People should learn about the world’s major religions. They are against the death penalty and use of torture.
  • Morals, ethics and beliefs are not fixed and may change over time.
  • Followers don’t necessarily have to belong to a church but must take an oath in which they promise to abide by the creed of Jediism.
  • In 2005 the first international church - Temple of the Jedi Order – was established. Its UK HQ is in Southend-on-Sea, Essex. 
  • Those who believe the faith can study for a religious degree in Jediism.
Critics of Jediism say it is not a proper religion as it originated from ficition rather than from truths told by a prophet. Some argue it is a type of philosophy. 

The Jedi Creed

I am a Jedi, an instrument of peace;

Where there is hatred I shall bring love;

Where there is injury, pardon;

Where there is doubt, faith;

Where there is despair, hope;

Where there is darkness, light;

And where there is sadness, joy.

I am a Jedi.

I shall never seek so much to be consoled as to console;

To be understood as to understand;

To be loved as to love;

For it is in giving that we receive;

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

The Force is with me always, for I am a Jedi.

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