Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Archmaras Tyden » Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:53 am

Time for my two cents.
This will be a blending of most if not all of your solutions, whether you like the outcome or think it's rubbish is up to you.

Firstly I see nothing wrong with a master/apprentice relationship as long as there are checks and balances in place. A knight should have no (zero, nada, none, zilch) say in whether their apprentice can be a knight. Those that approve of knighting need to be objective and too many knights in the past have proven they can't be when it comes to those relationships.
(As a side note, if you can't put your personal relationship aside to make an objective decision, you have no right to be called a knight in the first place.) The decision needs to be made by a knighting council, (I know you don't like councils but hear me out.) whose soul purpose is to decide whether someone has obtained the inner wisdom, tranquility, and balance required to be granted the rank of knight. Deciding who gets to be on this council is above my pay grade and presents problems of it's own. My best guess would be you, Opie, use your judgement based on what you have seen displayed.

To be placed to the council as a prospective knight one must meet the standard requirements and pass an equivalency test. This equivalency test will only be administered to those who trained from within the Jedi living order. A separate, more detailed, test may be developed later for outsiders wishing to be put before the council as a prospective knight. That's not what I'm talking about here.
The age limit, I feel, is too restrictive and leads to a predisposition to assume maturity. I have known 12 year olds more mature, than many adults and many adults, less mature than a 12 year old, some much less. Having the age limit restricts the young sage from taking a leading role that may be handed to another less qualified based simply on age. Conversely, it may see one promoted because we assume their age brings maturity. If the council makes it's own decisions based on character without a mandatory age consideration, I feel they will make a more informed decision for not having a his to lean on that does the work for them.
Two years on the other hand seems a very short time for one to learn the ins and outs of existing as one with the force. I feel at two years they may have a solid understanding of what is expected of them and how to inact it in their lives, but they may not yet have a solid control of it in practice. Give them an extra year, for a total of a three year requirement, in order to focus their lives in natural reactions and thoughts to the way of the Jedi.
As for the meetings, for some people that's just not a practical request. I am miles and miles away from any other Jedi and have no time or money to invest in a vacation, I'm sure that goes for several others following the Jedi path that may feel dissuaded from beginning because they know they can never make the commute.

After being knighted give them an additional year free from a master/apprentice relationship to take on and adjust to the new challenges presented by being a knight that were not previously experienced as a padawan. After the year has passed it is decided, through either a test or another council decision, whether they are fit to teach. Not all that follow the path, even those that excel the best, are meant to teach, and their lack of aptitude may adversely effect the education of the apprentice.

Assuming the knight passes or is approved (or both), then apprentice selection may occur. I'd give it enough time in general training to ensure the apprentice is dedicated to the path, which you know your coursework infinitely better than I do, then allow the selection to begin in whatever way seems best. The master will act as a tutor in addition to the classes and possibly assign extra work for their Apprentice that they feel will benefit them the most, but will not have any say on their progression to knighthood other than suggesting the apprentice is or is not ready for their trials when the council asks. The knight does not need to go to the council about promotion because it will be the council's duty to track progression. Maybe the knight can submit a report on any extra assignments completed.

I would like to hear your take on my ideas and if they're close, maybe help tweak them some. I know I'm new, but I feel balance and logistics is a talent I possess that I may use to aid the order.

Edit: Whoops. I apologize for the ridiculously long post.

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Opie Macleod » Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:22 pm

I would like to hear your take on my ideas
A knight should have no (zero, nada, none, zilch) say in whether their apprentice can be a knight.
I find this lacking for three main reasons.
1.) A successful apprenticeship has two very well informed individuals on a Student's progress and standing as a Jedi, the Student themselves and their Mentor. For everyone else it is an outside looking in situation. There is simply no one more informed than a student's direct teacher on readiness. We all deal with private struggles and a good apprenticeship means those intimate struggles are well known to the Mentor.
2.) Defining Culture within Jedi Living - you state that you have seen too many people allow their bias in regards to knighthood. That is a Community problem, not a Jedi Living problem. We hold all Jedi to a higher standard. In fact you mentioned so yourself, "if you can't put your personal relationship aside to make an objective decision, you have no right to be called a knight in the first place." Now debates on objectivity aside - we hold Jedi to a base level of understanding that one will behave in a manner befitting a Jedi or be called out on it by any member here from newbie to old dusty hermits. So not being able to give a fair view of their own student's abilities and capabilities on being a Jedi Knight is a bit silly.
3.) While no one should have a better idea of Readiness than the Mentor - certainly they cannot be the only voice; I will agree to that. Merely the one to express readiness and the reasons why they feel they are a Jedi Knight. This is the more balanced approached. Allowing the Mentor to express readiness, offer insights, and help with testing and informative procedures, but not "vote". Mostly because them saying - this person is ready, is already a vote in favor of Knighthood. The only one? No. There should always be checks and balances. Hence things like trials. But even if there weren't - a good mentor will have black-and-white verifiable evidence and documentation on exactly why this person is a Jedi Knight. Things that can be looked at by an outside party and say - yep, Jedi. Trails, Testimony, Personal Examples, Etc.
I know you don't like councils but hear me out
I think this is a misunderstanding. I don't like unnecessary and grandiose titles and positions. Most councils are nothing more than egotistical circle-jerks that only offer those involved any satisfaction. Ego boosting time wasters which give nothing to the overall community. Now if a Council or Title or Position actually has merit and is productive and useful then I have no issue with it what-so-ever. But anyhow. On to the actual suggestion -
My best guess would be you, Opie, use your judgement based on what you have seen displayed.
Here is what I require to pass any sort of judgment (this is personal - not a standard of Jedi Living). Documentation of Training (journals, assignments, written proof of growth, understanding, etc.). Examples of Practical Application, meaning examples where the Jedi has lived as a Jedi. This can be testimony of loved ones, people involved in their lives, etc. Credit Report, this isn't so much about score as it is about responsibility and understanding the value of financial wellness and how that plays into being a Jedi. Background/Criminal Report. I would require a certain age (we'll get into that though). Oh. And I would need them to hang out with them for a weekend, with one of those days participating in a Spartan Race together.

If we are going by what I see online - if that is the basis of my judgment - then no one is passing, ever.

So this seems a flawed premise. As for putting together a "council" to judge who is a Jedi Knight. Well, chicken or the egg situation. And ultimately why there will probably never be a Knighting Council at Jedi Living.
The age limit, I feel, is too restrictive and leads to a predisposition to assume maturity.
Two major problems with this.
1.) Restrictive is not a bad thing. And hardly a valid reason to have a standard.
2.) Wrong assumption about age requirement. It isn't about Maturity. That is not why the Age Requirement exists. It exists for specific allowance for life experience. There are certain things that only age allows for. Such as Driving and dealing with other drivers on the road. In fact I might include driving in Los Angeles rush hour as part of my Jedi trials now. My students thank you.

The argument - I know 12 years old more mature.... Great - just imagine how much more mature and experienced they'll be as 22 year olds. Or when they are 32 or 42. After they have lived and experienced heartbreak, joy, work struggles, student loan debt, marriage, children, or not being able to experience those things. I lived a very, very full life as a child. I was always told I was very mature for my age. I often would hang out with adults rather than people my age because I was more interested in philosophy than the new Jordans. Doesn't mean I was ready to be a Jedi Knight.

It is infinitely more easy to be mature and detached about things when you do not have the stress of the world crashing down upon you. When you do not have crushing debt, lose a job for a fault that isn't your own (downsizing), have bills and mouths to feed. Look being a kid presents its own challenges, but being an adult presents all new ones. And if one wants to claim to be a Teacher and Example of the Jedi Way then they need to understand how living as a Jedi plays into these unique experiences. Experiences which come with age.

Being a Jedi Knight is more than simple recognition. It comes with very specific allowances and responsibilities. Allowing 16 year olds to be Jedi Knights has always been a part of the problem in the Jedi Community. You can give recognition, you can give positions, and more responsibility without giving someone a Knight title. But a child int he Jedi Community should be encouraged to see to their future as a responsible adult rather than see to their future as a Jedi Community member. Encourage them to live as a Jedi - to grow as a Jedi - and to find a career and way forward in this world that fits them. Allowing them to feel accomplishment in the empty vessel that is the Jedi Community is no better than giving them an Achievement on X-Box.

So nope. Age Requirement will always stay. Nothing to do with maturity. Everything to do with living and experiencing life. And again, in case it was missed - even the most most full life as 12 will only get fuller by 22. So that is no reason to remove the requirement. As they'll only be better for the time inbetween.
a total of a three year requirement
I have no issue with this. In fact if it were me and me alone I'd make it five years. I know a Jedi who says ten, no questions. So yep. I am good with upping the year requirement. Only reason I have two is because that is about what it takes to get through Tier One and Two.
for some people that's just not a practical request
This just isn't true. It is impractical to expect to be recognized in a purely online environment when doing so will allow you immense responsibility in another person's offline life. Lets say what it really is....

1.) Price - Save 10 dollars a month. Three years minimum you said for training, so in 3 years you have 360. Easily doable. Now will saving require some sacrifice? Probably. No netflix or starbucks or fast food or video game sub or donation to green peace for three years. But not impractical. Recycling. Plasma Donations. Mowing someone's lawn. Ten dollars a month is not in the realm of impossible or impractical.

2.) Time - Any employer would allow a few days off with three years advance notice. School gives breaks much more than that on their own. Doable. Practical.

3.) Desire - Now if a person simply does not want to sacrifice and save and use that extra time and money and vacation on a Online Title within an Online Community. Now that is a 100% legit. But lets call it what it is. Has nothing to do with practicality and everything to do with what a person is willing to invest in this online community. And there is a great case to be made for simply not investing in a Jedi Knight title, but that case isn't about practicality.

I have spent over a $1000.00 USD to go to a National Jedi Gathering (that isn't a standard price, many go for much less). I wasn't able to do that because I am rich or because I get paid to do this. I am not rich, I am not even well off. I am not even middle class. And I pay for hosting and services to keep Jedi Living up and active, not the other way around. I was able to spend that money because I worked on my finances. I saved up. I budgeted and made a clear effort to ensure I'd be able to go to a National Gathering. It took a big bite out my budget and strained my finances. But it is something I wanted to do and so I made that effort. There are stories much more impressive than mine of Jedi tightening the belt and planning years in advance to get to a Jedi Gathering. Sometimes having to cancel the year they wanted and having to wait one more year just to ensure they had the means and way. And yet they made it happen. It just falls to the old saying, where there is a will there is a way.

So I find no reason here to remove the requirement. And I'd not ask someone to vote on a person's ability to be a Knight without having met them in-person. Again, the ability to affect change in someone's life is a huge responsibility and should not be judged based on how well they play Jedi online.
After being knighted give them an additional year free from a master/apprentice relationship to take on and adjust to the new challenges presented by being a knight that were not previously experienced as a padawan.
This has always been something I liked. So have no problems with this. Back int he day e use to call this position Journeyman or Journeyer. It allowed one to express they were no longer a student but also that they were not training any students. They were just living as a Jedi and experiencing the new paradigm. So I have no issue with that.
through either a test or another council decision, whether they are fit to teach.
There is no way to determine that. None what so ever. If a person chooses not to - cool. I can accept that. But the idea that there can be a test or council on it is simply laughable. It misses on how apprenticeships work. It is about finding the right fit. The right style. There are many ways to teach. And yeah, there may be some disconnect or failure or mistakes or all of the above. But you cannot take a test to determine that. It is going to happen. That is the point of going through an Apprenticeship yourself. So you have a good example of what you want to do. Ideas and examples to work from.

But Someone may not be a great teacher for most people, but the perfect teacher for one person. To try and regulate that and say - nope you cannot be a Teacher because X-Y-Z only hinders the individual and the potential students they would have reached.

Not every Jedi Knight has to teach. But that is their personal decision. And part of getting the Jedi Knight title - in my book - is giving the thumbs up and endorsement on teaching. If I someone is a Jedi Knight, I am saying they are capable and responsible enough to teach and guide another down the Jedi path.
The knight does not need to go to the council about promotion because it will be the council's duty to track progression.
Too much oversight. What is the purpose of a Mentor if they have no say and aren't the most informed one's on their own student's progress? In fact all of this could be done with a council at all. Jedi Knight feels their student is ready. they prepare a clear presentation as to why. Training Documentation. Examples of Trials faced in everyday life. Testimony of other Jedi and close friends and family. At a gathering of some kind, local, national, international, road trip to nearest Jedi, etc. They present the student and documentation. The student faces review and judgment by their peers. Yay or Nay is had. Student gets a year or more to be mentor-free and just adjust to being a Jedi Knight. Thereafter they are allowed to take a student of their own if they so desire. No council required.

In fact - replace council with members of whatever organization they belong to and you have a pretty standard knighting process. Because I am much more interested in how they act and treat their peers than I am about how they act and treat their teachers. And so I think hearing what other members think of them is just as valuable.
I know I'm new, but I feel balance and logistics is a talent I possess that I may use to aid the order.
:shrug: Meh. New has nothing to do with it. I listen regardless. We all have something to offer. Simple fact is Jedi Living isn't about titles. It is about Living as a Jedi. And that is why this topic has never manifested into actual titles or positions. I will entertain the idea from time to time, but in the end it is a pointless addition. The Community and this group just have no need for Jedi Knight titles. It is simply there for self-gratification. Something people can point to and say they accomplished. But too often that leads people to not knowing what to do next. It is a video game achievement. Once earned they stop playing.

So for the foreseeable future Jedi Living will simply be using the Tier/Level system. And if members want to get more involved with other members - great! Many new students would love more input from their fellow students, especially those in tier two. And that is open for anyone to do. But formal apprenticeships and titles may just have to be outsourced. Or wait until we actually have students who make it pass tier three. :lol:
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Archmaras Tyden
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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Archmaras Tyden » Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:47 pm

All very good points and I agree with most of them, but I feel some things could be worked on in time to make it work.

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Opie Macleod » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:50 pm

Things can always be worked on. Hence why the topic is up and not locked or closed. Everyone here is free to invest their time as they see fit. And for some it may be relevant to work they are doing at another website. So yep. Work never stops.
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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Dipple » Thu Dec 07, 2017 12:33 pm

I've had a read through much of this and I had a thought solely about the titles. The whole site is geared towards the training so why not leverage that? Sounds to me as though some of the naming conventions are somewhat arbitrary across the board anyway. If the titles are there to represent how far down the path you are, rather than how "good you are at being a Jedi" then we can just utilise what we have already. For instance:
Administrators, Global moderators, Jedi Student, Jedi of the First Level, JL Member
can become:
Master, Knight, Padawan, Initiate, Youngling

That way, each time a person progresses, they rank up. It's a nice way of seeing where you are at within the path without the need for the 1:1 master/student training. We already have those mechanisms in place so we can always use those. Saying one is a "Jedi Initiate" feels a little better than saying "Jedi of the First Level" for example.

As I say, we are all following the same path so we all have to learn the same things and do the same tests; this takes the issue of the master/padawan relationship out of the equation when deciding upon who ranks up.

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Tzall » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:53 pm

What about Jedi of the Second and Third Levels? (Since it's Opie, I'm sure that there are 5 levels - if only in his head at the moment)

I don't believe that the ranks of Knight and Master should be handled lightly. There is plenty of evidence in the community that even when those ranks are used to indicated administrative levels; for council members, moderators, and content creators - and not necessarily supposed to indicate anything more than the level of responsibility that a person has within an organization - that these people start to believe their own hype and expect levels of respect and deference that they've not earned. Had they earned it, they wouldn't demand it.

It also creats expectation. Strange ideas abound of how a Knight or Master should act and should be treated. People see Knights and Masters acting injediic (I created new term for un-jedi-like, =D ) and become disillusioned with the community. Some leave completely and others - where training fails - puts on a facade to appear like a Knight or Master. Because it is a facade, who they truly are will come out and cause even more damage due to pretension and in-authenticity

We're still in the infancy of Jedi development. There should be rapid periods of evolution in what it means to be a Jedi and the standards that they should be held to. Someone who was a Master 10 years ago and hasn't kept up with the community progression, is just a beginner on the path. Hopefully, in another 5 years, there will have been just as much growth and development. So if these terms become quickly obsolete, why not just abandon them for the time being and all the problems they cause and use tiers or levels?

I'm not a Jedi of the First Level. I'm a Jedi. I'll screw up and say stupid things and in general be injediic at times, but I'm a Jedi.

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Opie Macleod » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:57 pm

Way too misleading. In fact I’d argue that is a problem within our community. People using titles like Master when they simply mean administrator.

These words have meaning and connotations associated with them. Using a title like Jedi Knight when you simply mean forum moderator can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings.

Often people place themselves in these positions and the when they act counter to that concept, Jedi Master for example, they turn around and say - well I am just an administrator. But new people, visitors, they don’t know that. What they see is someone called a Jedi Master acting like a spoiled child on a power trip.

The problem the community has faced is reconciling the existing connotation of titles such as Knight and Master and the desire for advancement and gold stars which are much less demanding in standards.

While Jedi Initiate is easier to say and clearer than Jedi of the First Level. The next level - Jedi Knight is greatly misleading. And Jedi master should be seriously considered as being removed from our lexicon. Because even in the most basic terms no one has done right by that title. It is just there for ego.

I definitely appreciate the input and options. But no way I’d use establish titles as forum positions. If nothing else. There is no way I’d wear the Jedi a Master - especially just because I administrate a message board.

Edit: Or what Jedi Tzall said. :lol:
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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Amyntas » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:29 am

I could use a lot of words and give a lot of examples of misrepresentation of titles in the community , but i am not going to , i am not interested in titles , Jedi of the whatever Level just tells me i can get to my homework to progress in my knowledge here that i apply in real life , or try to , if i make it to the 5th level i am sure there will be a party somewhere in the Universe loll , untill then i just make my homework and live the Jedi life :bow:

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by JediJian » Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:54 am

I agree that if we were to use titles such as Master these ones need to be earned. And who decides that? I mean I get titles can be nice but as Jedi Opie Macleod said - there are already enough kids on a power trip out there (as a reference you may check out the Jedi Church Facebook group). So if we were to hand out titles such as Master the training needs to 1) be standardized across the community 2) include a lot of self-reflection on Jedi power trips and what it really means to be a Master 3) be difficult (define...) enough so that not everyone becomes a Master right away. In other words, a title that is earned and recognised. As of now I really don't see that coming within the next years. Especially 1) will be the most difficult task here. I only like titles if they have a meaning - in this case, so a young Jedi knows where to ask for advice and guidance within the community and to prevent being bitten by community trolls masked as a Jedi for instance. There are just (too?) many problems with it.

I prefer how it is done here on Jedi Living as of now. :bow:

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Re: Apprenticeship and Knighthoods

Post by Dipple » Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:54 pm

All of those points above make perfect sense - I see no flaw in any argument. I personally like the idea of steping through the different levels and gaining a new rank when you complete the different levels of training (as you would in education or the military for example), however not enough to, nor at the expense of, disrupting the harmony within the community. As you all pointed out - it doesn't really matter at the end of the day, I thought I saw a potential middle ground we could utilise for that purpose. Thank you all for your input :bow:
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