I had not had much experience with Jedi, other than directly in battle, and so there was always a little doubt that my assessment of the order and their philosophies was correct. But after tracking down Master Yonlach, I am now convinced that both the Jedi way and the Sith way are massively flawed.
Now, as a Sith, I would of course expect that Yonlach would be skeptical that I had any intentions towards the young padawan beyond simply killing her and ending her threat. But he did not express skepticism, but arrogance, a complete confidence that I had no interest in talking to her at all. He set up a test and a combat that was, essentially, two against one, a far cry against the fairness that Jedi espoused. He did this by simply paralyzing Vette and leaving her to watch. When his compatriot Yun-Li would give me the information to spare his Master’s life, Yonlach was again peremptory, shutting his off as well so that he could not. And then he was ultimately shocked when I refused to kill him, but simply told him to deliver my message.
Both the Sith and the Jedi want to control emotions. The Jedi do it by suppressing them, refusing to even acknowledge them. However, this does not eliminate their influence, and do not allow them to control their emotions. Instead, for the Jedi these emotions underpin their actions, and thus still control them; they spend much of their time rationalizing the actions that their emotions are suggesting as if it was a dispassionate consideration. But it is not. Yonlach was concerned about the padawan. He liked the padawan, and wanted to ensure her safety at any cost, and he justified that cost as being for the greater good, as if it was a rational decision. But it was, in fact, a rationalized decision. By suppressing rather than confronting their emotions, they blind themselves to the influence their emotions have on them, and thus let them guide their decisions in ways they simply do not realize. If Yonlach had not been following his unexpressed emotions, he surely would have had a better read on my intent than he did, nor would he have acted so egregiously against Vette and Yun-Li.
The Sith, on the other hand, revel in their emotions, claiming to use them as tools for their own power. But this is merely them giving in to all the demands of their emotions and claiming that that is what they really should do. There is little rationalization because the emotions are considered to be the be-all-and-end-all of all that matters. And so, again, while they claim to harness their emotions to their own ends they allow their ends to be what their emotions dictate them to be. And so they as well are controlled by their emotions.
Looking at the flaws of both, it seems to me that the key is to control your emotions and not let them control you. Only then can one do what needs to be done, and that is what I must strive for.
Tags: TOR Diary