Choose Your Own Adventure…

Nuclear bombs are released.  The world as we know it is over.  You were lucky enough to have survived, either you were far enough from the nearest blast or you happened to be in a building that isolated you from the fallout.  Law and order is non-existent.  People scavenge for food and supplies.

You are out walking one day and you see a small child.  The child is alone, and looks tired and week.  They have likely not eaten for days.  You have one can of safe food left, but you know you can find more, so you give it to the child.  The child is ecstatic and runs off towards, you assume, their shelter.  You smile and turn to do the same, but you stop suddenly when you hear a scream.  You run towards it, and see the same child.  He is being attacked by a man who wants their food, but the man does not stop upon taking the food, he continues to beat the child.

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Now for the choose your own adventure part.

Scenario A:
You watch in horror.  There is no one else nearby.  The child will likely die if you do not intervene, but you never learned to fight and the man is clearly stronger than you are, so if you intervene, he may very well kill both of you.

Scenario B:
You have never been in a street fight, but you did take a form of martial art in order to prepare yourself for just this moment.  You rush in to help the child.  You use only enough force that is necessary until the man runs or is unable to continue fighting.  The child is injured, but with proper care, will be fine.  You take them to safety.

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I am by no means a great fighter, though I have taken about two and a half years of various martial arts forms (and I intend to take more once I am able).  I have been attacked though….twice.  Both times would have likely resulted in sexual assault had I not been previously trained to keep my head and react as necessary.  Both times I walked away safe.  The first time there was a bit of a struggle before I managed to escape to a public area, the second time I only needed to show the slightest bit of ability before the man was scared off and left the scene.  I have several friends who have not been so lucky.

There are still many within the community that hold to the idea that Jedi do not need to learn how to fight.  Perhaps it is a stance of pacifism, perhaps it is fear, perhaps it is another reason entirely.  Learning how to fight does not mean one NEEDS to fight however.  A proper martial art sharpens the mind and spirit as well as the body, and you are encouraged to only fight when necessary.  Learning how to fight means that you know what to do IF you are ever in a situation that demands that you do, if you need to protect yourself, or someone else.  It is the duty of the Jedi to serve and protect.  It is therefore the duty of the Jedi to prepare themselves the best they can in order to serve and protect in any situation.  When I say that Jedi should learn how to fight…it is not for some silly tradition, it is not because my standards are set impossibly high, it is because I do not want to see anyone injured, murdered, raped…if any of us are in a position to prevent it.

 

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Be More Charitable

An updated version of this post can be found in the drop down menu at the top of the page under “Be More Series.”  It will continue to be updated as information is uncovered in that location, but will remain the same here.

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Helping others, center of a Jedi’s world.  Some people can donate money, some people can donate time, it does not matter what you can and cannot give, as long as you are making an effort to better the world.

First, let’s be honest, we are all Star Wars fans.  Unless there are a few Jedi out there who are not fans of the movie that I do not know about, which do not get me wrong, would be pretty cool if we have transcended the fandom, but to my knowledge and recollection, we have not yet done so.  I know several Jedi have Jedi COSTUMES (of varying degrees of quality), but for those who enjoy the costuming side of things, there are groups for that!

  • Jedi Assembly – A group for Jedi costumes only.
  • Mando Mercs – A group for custom Mandalorian costumes.
  • Dark Empire – A group for dark side costumes only.
  • Rebel Legion – One of the two largest groups, RL caters to all canon/legacy good guys, as well as those questionable in between characters.
  • 501st Legion – The big one.  This is the largest of probably ALL costuming groups, having around 10k members across the globe, and is my preferred group for doing “troops.”  The 501st accepts all canon/legacy bad guys, and also the questionable in between characters.  Their motto is “Bad Guys Doing Good.”

If you want to use your costume to raise money for charity, I HIGHLY recommend not doing it yourself, but joining one of these groups.  These are groups that are recognized by LFL/Disney, and have permission to do so as long as they follow the guidelines set in place by Disney.  To do charitable events outside of one of these organizations puts yourself at risk for legal action, and all groups at risk for being shut down.  Trust me, as a member of most of these groups, there is red tape.

Links

  • Free Rice – This site asks you questions in various subjects, and for every correct answer, the World Food Programme donates 10 grains of rice to the global cause.  Learning and Charity tied together.
  • Tab for a Cause – “Raise money for charity with each new tab you open.”
  • Charity Navigator – A place to look up more information about charities
  • Guide Star – Another information site

Apps

  • Charity Miles – If you do any walking, running, or biking, this app is great.  You choose a charity from their list and go.  The donate $.25 per mile to your chosen charity. Android | iOS
  • Give 2 Charity – Tracks your location to earn points.  Use points to donate to charity. Android | iOS
  • Tinbox – Donate $1 per day, paid for by sponsers. Android | iOS
  • Check-in for Good – “a free crowdfunding app that turns your everyday actions into donations for the causes you care about” Android | iOS

Donate Items
As I just recently moved this year, and am planning a cross country move in about seven months, I am having a hard lesson in the subject of downsizing.  I have been going through all of my belongings, and slowly putting aside items I do not need.  Some of these items are junk and end up in the trash, but a lot of these items are still good.  If you have the time, space, and energy, you could hold a garage sale.  The other option is donating your items, and there are several organizations with which you can do so.  Below are, from my perspective where I live, the top three, however a search in your local area could yield further results, but these three are fairly prevelant in the US.