Knights are the leaders of the Jedi Federation. It is obvious why many new members immediately want to know what they must do to become a Knight. Hopefully this primer will help to clarify the role of Knight and the process of earning that title.
Even though the quest to become a Knight is an important part of one's training, it is also important to understand, from the beginning, that becoming a Knight should not be one's primary goal. One's focus should be to continuously develop the mind, body, and spirit as well as build relationships and strive to improve the world. If one is working hard on those things, Knighthood will come naturally. After being knighted, the training and education continues; this is what it means to be a Jedi.
We don't wear the title of Knight as a badge and we don't expect special treatment as Knights. While some may feel a sense of accomplishment when getting knighted, others may have new responsibilities within the organization. Whether one has been knighted or not, others should be able to see how dedicated one is, how much effort one has given, and how accomplished one is.
While it would be nice if we could simply knight every person who has shown even some dedication and effort, there are reasons we insist on more before one can go for knighthood. The goal is to avoid giving the title to someone who may not be ready to model the virtues for which all Knights would like to be known. Everyone who is knighted should be proud that they have earned it and that other experienced and respected individuals have recognized their accomplishments. While we don't want to set impossible targets or discouraging expectations, we do insist that one do a little extra to prove oneself.
Requirements and Trials
Before one can be recognized as a Knight, one must meet these basic requirements.
[Neither a master/padawan relationship nor training at an online academy is required, but those who are newer to the path should consider these resources; they are a wonderful tradition in the community.]
A large part of the preparation for knighthood is related to the Jedi Trials. These are specific areas in which one is expected to show the experiences and capabilities which have prepared one to be a model of what it means to be a Jedi Knight. While the categories of trials are the same for each person, the exact situations which qualify as passing a particular trial will vary. Sometimes a former life experience may be able to show that one has passed a particular trial. Specific situations that come up during one's training can also be seen as the completion of a particular trial.
The Trial of Skill is a measure of one's control perseverance, and self-discipline. (Lightsaber skills are often included here and other physical and mental skills may be tested.)
The Trial of Courage is a measure of one's ability to persist in the face of fear, doubt, danger, or overwhelming odds. But beware, overconfidence can be a flaw and will not help pass this test.
The Trial of Spirit is a measure of one's ability to overcome one's own failings and limitations. One will not be a perfect person when one is presented for the Trials; one will be required to recognize one's temptations, flaws, and disabilities and show that one will not be defined by them.
The Trial of the Flesh is a measure of one's ability to overcome pain, desire, or loss. One must maintain composure and become a stronger person through the Trial to have passed it.
The Trial of Insight is a measure of one's ability to distinguish reality from illusion and look past the preconceived notions of oneself and the surrounding world. One's mind must be able to release the distractions and avoid the tricks and traps of life.
One is recognized as a Knight after one has met the requirements, passed the Jedi Trials, and faced the Knighthood Evaluations Board. Knighting Ceremonies are typically done at a Gathering so that all may share in the accomplishments.
(This oath is the standard oath. Other oaths may be used for the ceremony)
I swear to act with courage and integrity in deeds and in words.
I will seek knowledge and understanding.
I will serve the Jedi Federation as best as I am able.
I swear to provide assistance to those who are in need.
I will work for justice and relieve the distress in the world.
This oath I give of my own free will.
There are 3 essential duties that Jedi Federation Knight is to perform. A Knight will:
- Represent the Jedi Federation. (As such the Knight will uphold the vision and mission of the organization. The Knight will adhere to standards held by the organization.)
- Support the Jedi Federation. (A Knight may serve an administrative or leadership role. A Knight may follow a certain discipline.)
- Add to the knowledge regarding the Jedi Path. (A Knight could mentor a padawan or teach a subject. A Knight may create curriculum, programs, and other materials.)
What is given are mere examples. A Knight can fulfill these duties in any number of ways. There may also be other responsibilities a Knight will be called to do.
From those we knight, we maintain a high level of accountability in their actions and high expectations in their continued education. Please view the Knighthood Code of Conduct for more information.