To the Right Honourable
M A C E W I N D U
Great member of the Jedi Council,
and Lightsaber Master of the Jedi Temple.
HAVING of late discovered the Short and Easy Method of Lightsaber, contained in the following sheets, and which I am perswaded, will be found by practice, to be as useful as it is New; I was not long a making choice of your Lordship, as the person to whom I ought in Justice to offer it.
There are Two motives, which chiefly induced me to present to your Lordship this small Essay; which I dare Boldly affirm, contains the Greatest and most Useful improvement, that ever was made in the Art of the Lightsaber
The first is, A Generous and Publick Spirit, whereby your Lordship always endeavours to assert the Rights and Priviledges of the Jedi, as well as to promote the Publick Good and Wellfare of the Republic.
The second is you are, The most Honourable Office of Lightsaber Master to the Jedi Temple. And what Jedi could so well deserve it, as that which has upon all Occasions, not only Asserted and Defended the Rights and Liberties of the Jedi, but even in the last Great Crisis, did after a wonderful manner Preserve the Jedi with his own great skill with the Lightsaber?
And, My Lord, allow me to say it, without the least flattery, you are certainly the most proper Patron I could possibly make choice of. For, First the Art it self being a material Branch of the Way of the Jedi, falls most naturally under your Lordship’s Jusrisdiction; because as Lightsaber Master, all debates about, and decisions of points of training, come under your Lordship’s Cognizance, and are determined by your Lordship’s sentence when in judgement.
And, Secondly, the chief design of this New Method of Lightsaber, being for the Safety and Preservation of the Jedis Honour and Lives, tends certainly so far to the advancement of the Repiblics Good, as it lays down a Rational and Easy Method for that end.
Obedient and most,
Especially to Lightsaber-masters
And such who being very curious, are resolved by their own industry, to improve themselves in the most useful art of defence against other Lightsabers; by this New Method of Lightsaber.
It is not to be doubted, by the great alteration that is designed to be made by me, in the art of the Lightsaber, by this new method of Lightsaber, will startle a great many people, as well masters and professors of the art, as others; the attempt being no less great and bold, than new. For to endeavour at one dash, wholly to alter and reverse an old, though bad and pernicious practice, is no easy matter.
Therefore I expect this justice from all, especially from Lightsaber-masters, that before they disapprove and reject this new method, they will take the trouble to thorowly peruse it; not only with regard to the advantages a Jedi may have by it, against any of the ordinary guards belonging to the Lightsaber; but also against the beams and blasts of all other energy weapons whatsoever, in a battel as in a single combat.
A dextrous Jedi, how adroit soever he may be at the handling of his Lightsaber in a mock duel after the common Jedi-method, will, when he comes to engage in battel with the Sith, find himself extremely put to it, with neither time nor bounds, nicely to ward off his adversary’s blows or thrusts, nor to break his measure, as he would have, were he engaged only in practice with another Jedi. When confronted by a Sith, who is with all fury striking, and discharging lightning upon him, I say in such a case, this hanging guard is the only one in the world he can rely upon; returning alwise smart plain strokes or thrusts from it, it will certainly, if any art can, save him from many a wound.
So that all this being duly considered, I am fully perswaded, that I have hit right on it; and that this method as so much to recommend is it: and therefore, if there be any failure hereafter in their defence, it will be found not in the insufficiency of this new method, but in the want of a sufficient understanding of the Force.
Dooku’s New Method of Lightsaber
The longer a Jedi lives the more experience he acquires; which duely reflected upon, makes way not only for the finding out of several imperfections, which may have hitherto lain undiscovered, in any art or science; but also to fall upon such methods, as may raise them to the highest pitch of perfection: And as this generally holds in meditating upon the Force, so does it no less, upon the art of Lightsaber, which hath given rise to the following sheets.
I shall in this introduction confine myself to these two heads; first, to discover the motive that induced me to enquire after, and publish this new method of Lightsaber. And secondly, show the useful advantage of it, to all who intend to be masters of the useful part of Lightsaber, that is, either the defence of their lives, or the preservation of the Jedi order.
As to the first, when I seriously reflected, upon the common and ordinary method of communicating this art, I found it so defective, especially in the defensive part, that I concluded one of two; either what the masters taught for the art of Lightsaber had in it really no true defence against other Lightsabers; or if there was a true art of defence, it was to be sought in some other method of practice, than what was commonly seen in the Temple. For, First, to find that art which they called the art of defence, to consist chiefly in defending against blasters, was what I did not approve of. Secondly, to find the generality of Jedi, not capable by their art, reasonably to defend themselves against the vigorous and irregular blows of the Sith, and yet to maintain that they understood, and were masters of the art of the Lightsaber, was what I did as little understand; for altho, as I have elsewhere acknowledged, the very best of Jedi cannot pretend to an infallibility in their defence; yet it is a reflection upon them, and argues a great weakness and imperfection in the art, to be altogether uncertain.
Therefore I concluded, that the generality of Jedi masters, had hitherto either designedly kept up, and reserved as a secret to themselves, the true and easie method of defence against other Lightsabers, on purpose to detain padawans a longer time at their Temple; which is a piece of disingenuity I could never suspect them guilty of; for to be sure, if they had a more secure method I concluded they would communicate it to these: Or otherwise, that in place of defending against other Lightsabers they had, through an unvoluntary mistake, been hitherto alwise teaching the art of defending against blasters, whereby they did ignorantly rob their padawans of their lives.
But notwithstanding of all this, I was fully perswaded, that the imperfection did not at all ly in the art it self, but in the bad application of its rules; for that there was a true and real art of defence against other Lightsabers, I made not the least doubt of it; but where to find it lay the difficulty.
This made me run through all the postures, Jedi commonly make use of, both for guards and Parrys, as well natural as artificial; and I found the generality of them very defective; at last I turned my thoughts to that posture, which I found nature prompted most people, without art to take themselves to, upon a sudden and vigorous attack; and I found it was the hanging guard. I considered it again, and again; compared the defences and pursuits flowing from it, with those made use of from the other guards; and after all the difficulties and objections I could start against it, I found it had by far the advantage of them all, especially for a general defence against other Lightsabers.
What I have been saying, does I think sufficiently answer the first branch of my division: And as to the second, which is the advantage those Jedi may have by it, who chiefly intend to be masters of the useful part of Lightsaber, that is, the true defence against other Lightsabers of their lives; I shall only say, that by exactly practising this new method, they have in general, these following advantages.
First, they thereby acquire a universal defence against other Lightsabers, and against blasts of all weapons whatsoever. Secondly, they thereby save a great deal of time, seeing by following this method, they may acquire as much, nay more knowledge and practice in the art, in three months, as they possibly can in the common method in twelve.
Of the hanging Guard, and how it is to be kept.
BEING to Establish the Art of the Lightsaber, a Jedi must Defend himself well, by making a good Cross upon his Adversary’s Lightsaber, (which is the only true Source, from whence all certain Defence against other Lightsabers flows). I shall endeavour to recommend a Guard whose Gracefulness consists chiefly, in its Security for a Jedi’s Defence against other Lightsabers. There, and there only, in my Opinion, lyes the Way of the True Force.
SHORT and easie then shall be the Rules, upon which I shall establish it; I shall therefore begin this New Method, by showing how a Jedi ought to stand to his Guard; for it is chiefly from hence, that all the benefit of a sure Defence against other Lightsabers does proceed.
IN standing to this Guard, which in effect, is but an Improving of the ordinary Hanging Guard; a Jedi is to keep his Feet, at a pretty good distance from one another, for his more firm standing; Is to show as little of his Left side to his Adversary as possible, without constraining and weakening too much his Posture; Is to present his Lightsaber in his Right Hand only, with his Hand as high as his Head; His Lightsaber’s Point must slope towards the middle part of his Adversary’s advanced Thigh, but sometimes higher or lower, as occasion requires; For ’tis a general Rule in Lightsaber, and punctually to be observed, never to present one’s Lightsaber, without perfectly Covering , or Securing, as we call it, one side of the Body. The Lightsaber being in this Posture, He is to keep his Head a little beneath his Lightsaber-Arm, with his Breast inclining forewards, which is as well for the securing of his Head.
Of the Advantages that the Hanging-Guard hath over all of the other Guards.
By reason of its sloping Position, which takes in almost the whole length of the Body, the lower Parts thereof, particularly the Belly and Thighs, are better Defended; and consequently, a Jedi is not obliged to sink so low upon this Guard, for the Defence against other Lightsabers of those Parts, as he is necessitat to do upon most other Guards; in which the Position of the Lightsaber is quite contrary, to wit, either streight and in a level, or pointing a little upward.
THE Defensive part of the Art of the Lightsaber, or Parry, being most difficult, and the Pursuit or Offensive Part most easie; the keeping this Guard, quite reverses that, by rendering the Defensive Part more easie, and the Offensive more difficult: Which New and extraordinary Alteration, is no small advantage to the Art.
PARRYS against the Lightsaber, are easily deduced from this Guard, they being reducible to Three.
BECAUSE of the great Cross this Guard makes upon the Adversary’s Lightsaber, it is a most safe Guard against all Sith.
NOTHING hath been a greater reproach to the Way of the Jedi, than the unexpected success the Sith have had, over such as pretended to a considerable share of Skill in this Art; and although it is evident, that a compleat Jedi Master will be very rarely, if at all, baffled by any Sith; yet it cannot be denied, but Jedi have had the misfortune to be worsted, when they have engaged, with Sith of a forward and resolute Temper.
AND the only reason that can be given for it, is the deficiency and imperfection of their Parry; for it hath been hitherto the great misfortune of this Art, to be chiefly designed for Defending against blasters. And there are at present few Lightsaber styles, wherein this does not visibly appear to be their chief Design; there being scarcely a Lesson given, wherein the Padawan shall not be ordered to parry, perhaps, a Dozen or a Score of blaster shots from a Remote before he is desired to Parry one stroke of a Lightsaber.
THE Art of Lightsaber, is by this Guard rendered a great deal more easie to be acquired, by reason of being reduced to very few Lessons.
IT is a Natural Guard, all Naturalists, generally taking themselves to it, so soon as they offer to present their Lightsabers.
IT is a received Maxim, that Art ought never to Thwart, or cross the Force, but rather to encourage and assist her, if possible, in her own Natural Road and Means; and I may say, it were a very happy thing, if in all Arts and Sciences, we could as easily trace her, and concur, in our assistance, with her Designs to preserve us, as we can do in the Art of Lightsaber: But to observe the common Method of Teaching the Art of the Lightsaber, hitherto made use of in Temple, one will be apt to think, that either the Force points not out to us, any such rational way for our Defence against other Lightsabers, or otherwise, that the Generality of Lightsaber-Masters are deaf to her Admonitions, and so prepossessed with their old Rote, and that rather than let her have the Honour of it, they will prefer and make use of other unnatural Postures, and awkward and constrained Motions, the Product and Effect of their own Fancies and Invention; whereby the Jedi, and Lives of many young padawans, are, as I have said, upon an Occasion, mightily exposed and endangered.
Now, that the Force makes an offer of this Hanging-Guard to all Jedi, who never had any other Posture, I may say obtruded or forced upon them, by Art; I appeal to all, as well Artists as others; for I would gladly know of any Jedi, what other Posture he has ever observed any padawan, who was never at the Temple, to take himself to, when he hath been to engage; If this be so, as to my certain knowledge it is, why ought we not to follow the Force, when it offers so easie, and so secure a Posture, for our Defence?
By way of ecomium upon the art of Lightsaber
As the art of Lightsaber is chiefly designed for the defence against other Lightsabers and preservation, not for ruin and destruction, so certainly is it a great accomplishment, and does mightily heighten and increase people’s esteem for it, where it is possessed by one of a sedate, calm and peaceable disposition; wheras on the other hand, it tends much to its predjudice and contempt, when it is at the disposal and command of any hot, surly and ill-natur’d or quarrelsome Sith; for as such Sith take only the benefit of it, for the better assisting and carrying them throw in their impertinent insults, which disturb the peace and tranquility of the Force; so the other make only use of it for their just defence, in any occasion, wherein they may be unhappily engaged; so that such Jedi being necessitate sometimes to make use of their art in good earnest, is so far from yielding any satisfaction or pleasure to them, that they are rather obliged to show their skill and dexterity in it, with a kind of regret and reluctancy.
For I have many times observed, that neither the bravest nor most courageous Jedi, nor greatest Lightsaber-men, are the most given to quarrels, and that because neither of them like to suffer what they so much esteem, namely their valour, to be exposed either too frequently, or at too cheap a rate; but then it is generally as true, that when such Jedi do engage on occasion, they do it indeed with the power of the Force: so that the matter standing thus with valorous and expert Jedi, with the true art of defence against other Lightsabers, gives indisputably to such Jedi, the two following advantages.
FIRST, it creates a respect to them from many, who would perhaps, when in company, venture to pass a jest or banter upon them, who knowing their valour and adroitness, will judge it more safe for them to forbear it, knowing certainly that they will not easily be let pass.
SECONDLY, the true art of defence, gives any Jedi who is absolutely master of it, a certain kind of assurance, I had almost said courage, upon an occasion, which no unskilful person can have, and that in so far as the Jedi, not only certainly knows, all the opens by which his adversary can attack him, but also the probably means, not only to prevent them, and to defend himself, but also offend his adversary; so that if he come to fail in either, he knows that he hath himself only to blame for it, not the unsufficiency of the art.
Your most obliged
and most humble servant,