Become the Force: 9 Lessons on How to Live as a Jediist Master – Daniel M Jones (Watkins Media Limited)

What Star Wars fan wouldn’t want to read a book entitled, Become the Force: 9 Lessons On How to Live As a Jedi Master? I certainly jumped at the opportunity to hone my Jedi skills and leapt straight in. This was not at all what I expected. I don’t mean that in a bad way, I just expected a little more Star Wars and a little less self-help and spirituality. Maybe I should have read the title properly, it does say live AS a Jedi master and not actually become one.

As a person of a certain age I regularly question the meaning of life, I’ve pondered over many a profound tome. I’ve walked the way of F**K It, I’ve felt the fear and done it anyway and I’ve tried to unearth the Secret but always moseyed away feeling a little patronised and maybe because of this, as I cast a cursory glance over the first few chapters I felt cheated, I’d heard all this before…Hadn’t I? Not quite.

What Become the Force has that others haven’t is a really interesting and engaging backstory, the story of how the writer, battling with undiagnosed Aspergers Syndrome came to garner the wisdom he shares with the reader.  Daniel M Jones, the founder of the church of Jediism, gives a first-hand account of the establishment of the church and what compelled him to create, what he describes, as a movement rather than a religion.

Undertaking extensive research into religious and spiritual beliefs and following the teachings of the Jedi Knights in the Star Wars films, Jones has taken all the good stuff and pulled it together into a series of practice based ‘lessons’ which he insists (at the beginning of every lesson) should be incorporated into your everyday life, if you are to “evolve into a Jediist.” Advising on topics from meditation to martial arts and thought control to “force theory”, the subject matter is easily recognisable ensuring the teachings feel credible and realistic.

I suppose the million dollar question is, after reading the book, and having a fair bash at practicing the lessons, do I feel like I’ve lived like a Jedi master? In short, no, not really, I still can’t make things levitate, and my attempts at mind control seem to be falling short. However If you want instruction in living a more peaceful, balanced, harmonious life, at one with the Force, ki, Chi or Holy Spirit, (because the Chuch of Jediism is open to anyone regardless of religion) or if you just happen to be a Star Wars fan, this book is well worth a read. If you want to be a Jedi Master, then you’re probably better off making your internal monologue sound like Yoda. Paula Harris

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