Darwin Defeats the Jedi Order?

So what brought the Jedi down to the point where their "foggy" sensibilities could get them wiped out by a couple of Sith?

  1. Force talent seems to run in families.
  2. In fact, every child of a Jedi that we've seen - in the movies, and in at least most of the EU, for that matter - is force sensitive to a degree.
  3. Jedi aren't allowed to marry. They are a celibate order. (See #2 for why we don't have more evidence from the movies on whether or not force sensitivity runs in families.)
  4. For the past thousand years prior to the prequels, the Jedi order has been dying out slowly.
Anyone else get the feeling that the Jedi Knights drained their order by imposing celibacy on its members? Whether it's midichlorion transmission through bodily fluids, like a disease, or genetic, or what-have-you... the celibacy rule selects against force sensitivity.

Darwin 1, Jedi Order 0.


Anonymous said...

That sounds like a very reasonable conclusion, all things considered.

In the end only those with 'top of the line' force sensitivity get to become Jedi. The fun part of this is that they not only select against future Jedi, but they also specifically seem to select against powerfull Jedi.

That fits marvelously with the ROTS scenes where the Jedi where obviously 'not that good' anymore. All their selective breeding might have just made the really good ones go extinct, barring a few standouts like Anakin or Obi Wan.

(Yoda, being the most powerfull Jedi, was also the oldest present. If his species grows very old but has human-like growth -i.e. one or two children per couple- that would both explain why he is still so powerfull -less generations 'weeded' out- and why we never see many of his species)

Author said...

That might make for a good explanation regarding the dwindling numbers of Jedi by the time of the Republic.

- In the TPM novelization a rough count of ten thousand was given for Jedi Knights, some 13 years prior to RoTS.

- In the RoTS novelization, Mace comments that since the fall of Darth Bane (about a millennium ago both in RoTS and the TPM novel) there have been "hundreds of thousands" of Jedi, which fits pretty well with the ten thousand of TPM.

- Also in the RoTS novelization, we're told that the journals of a billion Jedi from over the past 25,000 years are contained in the Archives.

Obviously, for there to have been mere hundreds of thousands over the past 1000 years but a billion in 25,000 years, something is seriously weird. The latter suggests an average rate of 40,000,000 per millennium, which is a whole lot of "hundreds of thousands".

I previously assumed that the Sith war from a millennium ago had seriously shattered the Jedi moreso than has been let on previously.

(Indeed, having watched newBSG too much I also pondered the line told to Gaius by the Six in his head . . . "All of this has happened before, Gaius, and all of this will happen again" . . . i.e. that maybe 1000 years ago something much like the six films occurred, insofar as the reduction of the Jedi to one or two and the temporary loss of Republic. The new Legacy comic series storyline might fit with that, too.)

However, instead of a shattering of the Order in a single event that they never fully recovered from (the "Jedi Reduction Catastrophism" idea, if you will), the thesis of long-term dwindle might be more accurate. The Order was born, found gazillions of members right off the bat, but as time wore on they had fewer and fewer. So whereas Mace's millennium had hundreds of thousands, the one before it might've had a couple of million, and the one before that several million, and so on (tweaked to result in a billion over 25,000 years).

Most interesting.

Author said...

It occurs to me that there might be a third alternative. If the celibacy bit only appeared after Darth Bane, that would end some long family lines among the Jedi real quick. In other words, there would've been only enough conscripts throughout history to support hundreds of thousands per millennium, but pre-Bane they were knocking boots and rolling their own, as it were.

Why they would change that is unclear, but potentially intriguing.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the Jedi were begining to be just as feared as the sith... the jedi would litterally be a massive army with super powers that no mere man could ever hope to stand up against. Their will would then be the peoples will. To prevent mass paranoia, the jedi may have decided that it be wise to 'thin the ranks' a bit. After several hundred years the true reason was lost to all but the records (since no one would really go looking for it) and it just became standard practice.

Anonymous said...

Celibacy and Jedi's in indeed an odd thing. I thought about it a bit and my current belief is that most likely something 'bad' happened, like a Jedi husband or wife stealing secrets or a Jedi going renegade over his wife. Or something like that.

And that as a result of that the Jedi decided to ban marriage and such things, to prevent a repeat of this problem in the future.

I do agree it's quite intruing indeed. I also suspect we'll never know for certain. Unless someone writes a book about it ofcourse :-P

Anonymous said...

Very Good Explanation! I was writing an essay about this, but you came before.
I have additional point, though : the Explanation of why no one could stop the Sith.

By not allowing Jedi to marry, the order not only drained himself, but also midichlorians, as the hosts where they could prosper the most (Jedi) dwindled more and more. So midichlorians decided to take action and stop this situation, no matter what - by either changing the order, or destroying it. This explains:

- How Anakin was conceived in the first place: midichlorians created him.

- What means "bring balance into the Force" - stop diminishing living space for midichlorians.

- Why is he so powerful - midichlorians give him power for such an important task.

- Why did he married and selected love over duty? - He first tried to do the right thing. His hope was that he maybe could convince the other Jedi by his Example, so the celibacy would be lifted.

- Why Anakin turned on Dark? - nAfdter it became clear the Order would not approve any deviations or changes, midichlorians forced Anakin to help in destroying the Old Jedi Order. After all, 2 siths seasrching and killing force-wielders wouldn't do that much damage as 10000 Jedi searching for and forcing force-wielders not to marry.

- Why were the other Jedi poweless to stop the Jedi Purge ? - whenever Jedi called upon force to do something against it (discover Pqlpatine, evade Clonetroopers...) midichlorians rejected cooperation, and Jedi relied on them too much.

Sounds like a good theory, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

I don't know if it is as simple as Jedi not having children- after all, there's a lot of unknowns there- Mace was clearly powerful enough to take on Sidious in a duel, Yoda was born apparently 200 years after the events of Darth Bane, and he was clearly powerful... Anakin didn't even have a father yet was stronger than Yoda. Whilst because of the midichorlians there's clearly a biological link, I think if all the Jedi suddenly stopped having kids then the Order would have gone bye-bye long before the events of ROTS. The Sith also don't as far as know have children, yet they were able to survive too. Indeed, Sidious was a very powerful Sith, strong enough to defeat Yoda

Anonymous said...

Indeed, Sidious was a very powerful Sith, strong enough to defeat Yoda
I always thought Yoda just gave up. He didn't look like he was defeated any more than Sidious was. Ok, he fell down, but it isn't as if Sidious was in such a great shape at that point either.

Not too mention that Sidious tried his utmost best to kill him using force lightning and didn't even come close to succeeding.

(I know, saying that Yoda just gave up doesn't sound very cool, but I know a lot of people* who felt that way about the Yoda/Sidious duel. It didn't feel right, it felt like a copout.

Just like Obi Wan's way of leaving Anakin felt like a major copout. Made Obi Wan look like either an idiot for not killing him or downright evil for letting him suffer like that.

Not one of George's best moments IMHO

*) Those people don't know about anything as silly as these sites tho :-P ).

Anonymous said...

Sailor, I like your theory. The only problem I have with that is the idea that the Force has a will. However, that's how the Force turned out with Lucas's prequels, while it was more wild in nature in the OT. It turned to be more godlike than ever.

Unknown said...

I think the point is pretty obvious here: to prevent Jedi from becoming TOO powerful.
The Force is an energy-field created by all living things (like collective bio-electric energy), and the Midichlorians allow people to manipulate it.
In a galaxy of a million worlds, there will be enough NATURALLY Force-abled people with high Midichorian levels, to become Jedi. Meanwhile Anakin, Luke and Leah are much more more powerful than ordinary Jedi, since Anakin was artificially created by Palpatine, while Luke and Leah had parents who both had high Midichlorian levels, thus creating "super-Jedi." This type of breeding would create a race that would become too powerful, and overthrow any existing order-- creating the Sith-order. The Sith-order likewise met dissension in their ranks, creating a hierarchy of "one master, one apprentice" in order to keep order among the ranks.
Palaptine was a Sith apprentice who killed his Sith-master, Darth Palegius, and created Anakin; Shmi only carried him.
So the Jedi were expressly forbidden to marry and reproduce, to avoid this happening again.
Palpatine used the same strategy of Julius Caesar, who convinced the Senate to give him supreme military authority in order to fight the war against the Gauls, who had defeated them before under Brennus; before this, Rome was a rather democratic state. Unlike Ceasar, however, Palpatine secretly STARTED the war that created the need-- and Jar-Jar Binks was his "useful idiot" that he tricked Padme into trusting in her place, while Palpatine likewise sent her to be alone with Anakin in his scheme to get them to marry each other, so that he could use her and her eventual pregnancy as a lever to control Anakin (another reason why Jedi aren't allowed to marry: conflict of interest with their duty to protect the galaxy).
So it wasn't anti-Darwin to prevent marriage, it was BALANCE.