Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Gail Allen
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Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Gail Allen »

I know this is what you've all been waiting for. Not just throughout these last few weeks, but ever since coming to the Jedi Temple. As you all know the Gathering is an important rite of passage and probably the most important thing you will do until you take the Trials in final preparation for becoming Padawan Learners.

For now though, we will all travel to Ilum, the snow-covered planet known for it's crystal caves where the Force is highly concentrated. In these caves each and every one of you must enter alone to find the Kyber Crystal that will be the basis of your first lightsaber. But beware, these caves are treacherous and will force you to come face to face with your worst fears – of course there will be no actual danger, but because of the concentration of the Force and the special composition of the caves, the mind will experience these fears as though they were.

In this regard the caves are very much like a creature called a Boggart that I am told most of you will be familiar with.
In preparation, I would like to hear a story from all of you about facing whatever you fear the most. How would you overcome it? Having done this mental exercise will help you tremendously when you enter the caves of Ilum on your own.

Post your answer below by 11.59 pm on the 31st of May to earn 5 points.

*You are welcome to answer this question as yourself, but you are also more than welcome to answer as your character.
Prof. Sky Alton
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Prof. Sky Alton »

Elesti’s greatest fear is conflict. In order to overcome it, she had to realise that there are things that are worth fighting for and also that conflict can also bring about beneficial change. She first profoundly realised this during her second year at the temple and it is this experience that she revisits when confronted by the paralysing fear of conflict and combat.
By that point in her education, she had finally relaxed enough to make some friends amongst the other younglings. One of these friends was often belittled and targeted by an older youngling due to their species. At first, Elesti attempted to reason her way through this situation the way she’d always been taught, by assuming that the bully wanted something that her friend could give and that her friend just needed to be willing to meet them half way. This of course only exacerbated her friends hurt, particularly when Elesti’s suggestions only made matters worse.
Eventually though, Elesti realised that what the bully truly wanted was the chance to feel superior and that her attempts to placate them had only increased their sense of power in the situation. Only by standing up to them alongside her friend and other younglings they convinced to join them were they able to make the bully back off and convince them that there would be consequences for their hateful actions. While the confrontation made Elesti violently ill afterwards, she still saw it as a turning point for her. She had been able to use conflict as a tool to bring about peace and there was no shame in it. She also encouraged her friend to explain matters to the elders, something which she never would have been able to do before due to the thought of the resulting negativity.
It is this moment Elesti remembers whenever she is faced by the prospect of having to fight or to argue. While such a prospect can still make her freeze and feel physically sick, she reminds herself that greater evil can come through inaction or through tacitly enabling the negative actions of others. She also visualises the things that she has come to realise are important enough for her to want to fight, chief amongst them the safety of others as well as the wellbeing of the Jedi order itself. By reminding herself that conflict is natural and, done right, can be the way to peace rather than it’s complete opposite, she can bring herself to engage in combat or disagreement.
"Some things never change, turn around and the time has flown. Some things stay the same, though the future remains unknown."
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Maxim Trevelyan
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Maxim Trevelyan »

Kar’ta’s greatest fear is losing all the knowledge that he gathered throughout his life. That would show first in people forgetting him, then at the very end, by Kar’ta slowly forgetting all the information taught or ingrained in him, even his own name.

He always found it difficult to face his greatest fear, not knowing how to fight against such an invisible and intangible enemy. At first, Kar’ta started writing all the information he thought important down, little bits and pieces of paper and journals hiding in his room, his ship and anywhere he frequently visited. When it became apparent that these pieces might get lost (for example, when the apprentice’s kitchen was accidentally set on fire), Kar’ta picked a few key facts about himself that he turned into a chant, which he murmurs (aloud or in his mind) anytime he is afraid.
Prof. Tarma Amelia Black
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Prof. Tarma Amelia Black »

Lufta's greatest fear ... being betrayed by someone she thought she loved, and she thought he loved her, and being killed for what she is. Being put to death by drowning.

Since the people of her planet accept many things as normal which are not accepted on other places, it was no big deal for her to remember other lifetimes. The difficulty with living other lifetimes, though, is remembering how one died. Most of the 'deaths' of the body were not even remembered as traumatic, just as a dropping of that one 'body' and going on to the next when it was time.

There was an embodiment, though, during a time of great upheaval and power-plays amongst the peoples of the planet, where the innate abilities of different people were vilified and feared. Lufta was one such person, with an ability to heal compounded with an acute knowledge of plants and their healing abilities. Unfortunately for her, she put her faith in her boyfriend and told him of these things. He not only turned away from her, with disgust and judgment and fear, but reported her to the 'authorities', led them to her and was present when she was caught, bound up and killed.

In the cave, she relives this ... and the only way that she can 'get over it' -- is to forgive him. And to forgive herself for having had faith in him and trusting him. With that, the ropes dissolve and she swims to the surface. Healed.
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Isa Vestal
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Isa Vestal »

One thing that I’sa is terrified of is that she is incorrect, both in her morals and in a more factual sense. As someone who has witnessed people believe wholeheartedly that their morals were just while carrying out immoral acts, she fears that she could be ignorantly making decisions that could cause pain to others whilst believing that her actions were correct.

This is especially important to I’sa because one of her main goals since starting at the Jedi Academy has been to reform the Jedi Code in favor of a system more in touch with emotions. She knows that such a drastic change will not be immediately welcome, especially with older members, and wonders if her whole philosophy is false. This has created a lot of turmoil within I’sa as she knows that she is often reckless with her actions but also believes wholeheartedly that the Jedi code must be reformed. She knows not to recklessly jump into such a great task but struggles with how much she should and when she should trust herself.

This thought of an inability to discern right from wrong plagues I’sa’s dreams. She often has nightmares about an older dark side version of herself who passionately believes what she does to be right and moral. In the dreams, the dark version of her goes to any length to fulfill her goals of Jedi reformation and ends up attempting to force the Jedi to align with her own view. Of course, I’sa sees this as an overblown possibility that is unlikely to happen but knows that, from someone else’s perspective, her beliefs could be seen as just as immoral as she sees this vision of herself. Another dream— and a more likely reality— that often appears in I’sa’s dreams is a vision of herself that grows up and is able to reform the Order, only to find it crash and burn, turning into a community of powerful, prideful, selfish Jedi due to her doctrine.

One way in which this fear manifests itself in I’sa’s real life has been that she has had trouble making quick decisions. She bounces the states of being overly reckless and overly tentative, while never being confident enough in a thought-out plan. Though both of these things can occasionally work in her favor, I’sa’s underconfidence due to a fear of being wrong has stunted her. While in training, she is fearful of making mistakes which has led her to not try new things as she is terrified of being incorrect.

I’sa has worked very hard to combat this fear and has been able to practice controlling her fear through the interactions she has with her other selves in her dreams. She has learned to pick each of the dream selves who appear to her apart, pointing out what exactly went wrong so that their Jedi Order failed and taking it more like advice on what not to do instead of like a prophetic future. This, still, does not combat the fear itself but a manifestation of that fear and I’sa is still working toward finding a way to make her feeling of self-doubt less crippling.

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Iverian Gnash
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Iverian Gnash »

April never much talked about her fears. She didn't much think about them either. But now that she had entered the cave, they all came back to her like a brick hitting her in the face. Out of all of them, betrayal was the biggest.

Ever since she had heard of her colony being so brutally attacked years ago, she could never quite bring herself to truly trust anyone. However, in the past few years she noticed herself truly trusting a few people. She had never known the feeling before and it was a weird one to get used to.

Perhaps trust was a good thing, but as she entered the cave, it brought out the darker possibilities of it. Her greatest fear was that those she trusted would somehow betray her and the cave brought the fear back very strongly. However, she had to wave these things away because she knew they were hardly possible.
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February Fortescue
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by February Fortescue »

As Lyra entered the cave, she was unexpectedly overwhelmed with feelings of loss. Although her planet was a peaceful one, and her home on that planet was especially relaxing, Lyra had experienced many unforeseen deaths of family, friends, and pets she had loved. Her biggest challenge in training had been to learn how to "see the glass as already broken," which means to realize that everything changes, and every living creature she loves will die at some point, and to become comfortable with this reality.

Lyra also remembered she made herself several promises: to serve those she cared about, to help whenever she could, and to never let a day pass without telling the ones she spoke to that she loved them. Should the person she cared about leave, she would know she had done her very best, and would have no regrets.

By focusing on her own actions, and reminding herself that "the glass is already broken," Lyra was able to successfully conquer her fear.
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Prof. Will Lestrange
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Prof. Will Lestrange »

My biggest fear is often described as a fear of failure, but it's really a bit more than that. My real fear is a fear of investing a lot of myself in something only to find it to turn out to be a disappointment: a struggle for mediocrity and failure is a lot worse than failing something I really don't care that much about!

Maybe I could force myself to face this fear by placing myself in situations where I'm expected to put in an inordinate amount of effort just to be average - or to be expected to fail anyway... but I really don't find this comfortable at all. Instead, I deal with this fear by doing what I can to make sure that any time I really am expected to put in effort, it is going to be likely to pay off! (If it was never going to succeed anyway, then - to be honest - I'm really better off putting in my efforts elsewhere.)
Lorainia Riverrider
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Lorainia Riverrider »

Anburr's biggest fear is get left behind. Anburr like to be around her people. She afraid she not do well by self because her people help her. She is overcoming by make new friends. New friends help too she learn. She also learn van do things by self. Anburr slowly overcome fear.
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Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much. -Helen Keller
Emily Spencer
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Emily Spencer »

Ky'lia really did not know fear until she came to the Academy. By in large, she had been the mistress of her own fate and had learned early on to confront circumstances and situations with a level head. If you allowed yourself to show fear or even feel fear, you were doomed in the Drag. Scavengers fed on fear, and the weak really had no chance. It was a lesson you learned, or you died. That simple.

But here at the Jedi Academy, she had been forced to confront certain inner truths about herself, and quite frankly, it scared her. The Masters had stressed the importance of resisting the lure of the Dark Side, and like the rest of her class, Ky'lia had nodded obediently in agreement. But when the Master told the story of Anakin Skywalker, a promising padawan who had allowed his anger and bitterness to control him, she had quit half-listening and felt the first real inkling of fear. The Master, who spoke of the boy who would become the evil known as Darth Vader, could have well been speaking about her, Truth be told, Anakin sounded not unlike some of the boys (and girls) she had known back on her homeworld. The fear of being lured to the Dark Side was Ky'lia's biggest fear, mainly because she knew how easy it would be.

She faced this fear practically, logically, and without emotion, as she had been trained to do. In that respect, it was her first real steps on becoming a true padawan (hopefully). She went out of her way to help fellow younglings she saw struggling, where before she would have taken advantage of their weakness at worst, and at best would have watched their struggles with a superior smile. She spent extra hours in the Temple meditating, something that had once bored her to tears. She studied the Code religiously, committing it to heart and measuring her every move by its creed. She was determined not to let her worst fear become a reality. She may have not been a good person, but she wasn't an evil one either. The world did not need another Darth Vader, and if one did emerge in the future, it would not be her. She would see to that.
I do it because I can. I do it because I want to. I do it because you said I couldn't.
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Prof. Polaris Black
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Re: Week 4: The Gathering - Face Your Fears

Post by Prof. Polaris Black »

Jan’tz had tried to prepare for the Gathering by doing the recommended exercise but couldn’t figure out what she feared the most. At first she thought it might be the unknown but quickly realized that could be corrected by doing additional research. But what if she couldn’t find what she was looking for? No – in the end, she always found what she was looking for.

So on the day she went to Ilum, she felt pangs of trepidation as she approached the ice caves. She took comfort in being prepared and today she knew she just wasn’t. As soon as she entered the cave, her mind started playing tricks. What if the Force within her wasn’t strong enough to guide her? What if no crystal matched her as a Jedi? What if she never heard the music? What if every crystal she touched was cold? What if her dark side was too strong?

She knew she had to stop these thoughts from swirling. So she stopped, leaned against the cave wall, closed her eyes and took a long, deep breath. She felt the Force rush through her and thought she heard the sound of crystal music.
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