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  1. Welcome back for another episode in the Adventures of JediNickD! It seems like forever ago that I joined this site and my first challenge. Judging by my level, you might say I'm right! But level and experience mean nothing unless lessons learned are applied in your life. This website has given me practical knowledge in goal setting and planning. Throughout my life, I have been applying that knowledge. In my career, in my job, in my home life, in my Toastmasters training, in the gym, in my Jedi training, and even in my fantasy football league! Throughout the next few challenges, I plan to focus my Jedi lessons around this passage from Return of the Jedi where Obi-Wan says that quote: Quote This challenge, I'll focus on the quote in bold by Obi-Wan Kenobi. In this part of the conversation, Obi-Wan mentions a theme that is prevalent throughout The Origial Trilogy. Nature is good, technology is evil. No where is it more prevalent than in Return of the Jedi when the Ewoks aid the Rebels in defeating an advanced Storm Trooper army at the Battle of Endor. There is a book called "Star Wars and Philosophy" edited by Kevin Decker and Jason Eberl which includes a chapter on this very subject titled "A Technological Galaxy: Heidegger and the Philosophy of Technology in Star Wars" penned by Jerold J. Abrams. Using Martin Heidegger’s philosophy of technology, Abrams separates technological experience into two categories, ready-to-hand and present-at-hand while explaining the process of enframing. He uses real life and Star Wars examples to help explain the concepts. Lastly, Abrams points out how present-at-hand and enframing is the path to the dark side. Ready-to-hand is our primitive tool-use relation, where we experience tools and the external environment as natural extensions of our bodies. This application of technology is considered in tune with nature. The tools are used to care for our homes, each other, and the earth. Abrams explains that ready-to-hand is the light side or Jedi application referencing Yoda’s existence on Dagobah as perfect example as a Jedi applying only ready-to-hand technology which I’ll get into later. Present-at-hand is the opposite of ready-to-hand. We are detached from the environment by way of high-tech tools due to our basic attitude towards the universe. This comes from advances in science which allow us to see deeper into nature and gain control of natural processes. In essence, we are challenging nature to reveal itself to us as something for us. Everything natural is put under a microscope. Heidegger calls this process “enframingâ€. Nature’s elements are classified as resources to be consumed. Forests become “lumber†and rivers become “hydro-electric powerâ€. Abrams considers this the dark side or Sith application referencing the Death Star as the ultimate example of present-at-hand technology and enframing. Darth Vader a walking example of enframing. When is the last time Darth Vader smelled a flower or watched a sunset? In The Original Trilogy, we only see him stand on metal floors except in one scene in "The Empire Strikes Back" where he is inside the Hoth Rebel Base (excluding Luke's cave experience, which isn't really Vader, but a hallucination). Anakin Skywalker, the man who would become Darth Vader, exclaims to Padme in Episode 1 "I'm a person." In Episode 2, he begins the enframing process by losing part of his arm and having it replaced with a robotic limb. With Yoda’s home life on Dagobah contrasted against the Death Star, there is no doubt which is the path to the dark side. Yoda lives a meager life in a hut molded out of mud. He only consumes that what he must to survive. He utilizes no technology outside of rudimentary tools and utensils; therefore, leading the perfect example of a ready-at-hand technological experience. It is very possible to live as Yoda does on Earth. Amish and Mennonites do it every day along with many African and South American tribes and even other communities dedicated to living a wholly natural life. These communities are very isolated to the rest of the world, which means a Jedi would not be able to serve the greatest good of the world in one of these communities; however, they would be able to serve the greatest good of the community and nature of the planet. Yoda hides in isolation, preventing Darth Sidious and Vader from discovering him while preventing himself from fighting the dark side and protecting the galaxy from a tyrannical government. He is able to preserve the nature of Dagobah by only employing ready-at-hand technology, but he fails to help protect the galaxy. Technology may be leveraged in many ways, but fall into the two categories of ready-at-hand and present-at-hand, which are defined by how it is used by humans. Photography when used to post "selfies" and such falls into present-at-hand, but when used to promote and educate about nature, natural experiences, and such it falls into ready-at-hand. Jedi must be careful with how and why they use technology. Now, on to the CHALLENGE! My mission is to be the best Jedi I can be. My main quest is always to enhance my overall health, fitness, and knowledge to be prepared for whatever challenges life could throw at me. As a Jedi, I need to be able to help people, whether that is a life threatening situation or just a charitable one. There is no boss level in Jedi training, there is only tomorrow. I'm keeping it similar as last challenge with a couple upgrades while keeping in mind that Thanksgiving falls in the middle of the challenge. My main quest with attribute points is below: FITNESS: Build STA +2 and DEX +1 by Running, Sprinting, Hiking, Biking, Rowing, Rollerblading, or Training (HIIT or Sports*) for 20 minutes or more, three times a week. Get to the gym once a week at lunch time (or on the weekend) for an extra work out.Winter is here and that's when I tend to mail it in, so I'm going to turn up the pressure by going to the gym at lunch time at least once a week. Schedule will resemble TuWF, MWTh. FITNESS: Build STA +1, STR +3 and DEX +1 by meeting at least 95 % of my fitness side quest goals. I've switched around a few exercises to my fitness side quest goals. Going for another 100%. DIET: Build CON +1 by eating "Healthy Meals"** 34 times or more, eating "Unhealthy Food"*** 18 times or less and count their calories, drinking 230 fl oz of Dr Pepper or less, taking care of my skin and lips by applying moisturizer 80 times or more (twice daily), brushing (twice daily) and flossing (once daily) 120 times or more. Looking to make more small strides. I will be counting calories, but not as a goal this time. LIFE: Build WIS +3 and CHA +3 by completing two Toastmaster Speeches, participating in Table Topics thrice and Meeting Roles four times, working on my High Performance Leadership project by recruiting students for a Speechcraft, successfully completing the Area Speech contest, and completing 2 IJRS Personal 101 lessons.I'm three lessons in to my High Performance Leadership manual, but I'm in the bulk of the work now inlesson 4, which I won't complete until May. I finished my second Competent Leadership manual and have only one speech left in my third Competent Communicator manual. I have 1 speech left for my Advanced Communicator manuals. I plan to do a Speechcraft training session for the 1 hour training session I need to do for my Advanced Communicator Gold, so I can earn my DTM. My Club Coach and Area Governor roles are going very well. I'm holding a speech contest in March and assisting one in April. Jedi Training will take a backseat this challenge. I'm hoping to finish the course this spring. I have 5 lessons left, so 2 this challenge and 3 in the next should complete it. To improve my project management and proposal skills, which are vital to rising higher in the ranks of my contracting company, I decided to take some online courses. I just finished Acquistion 101 which is a prereq for just about every course at the University. I signed up for the next course which ends on April 12th. * - Training or playing Basketball, Soccer, Rugby, Football, Hockey, Swimming, or Racquet Ball ** - "Healthy Meals" means no grease, minimal fat and calories, mostly veggies, meat, and fruit, while avoiding starches. Breakfast is not included in count. *** - "Unhealthy Food" means anything with excessive grease, fat or sugar, empty calories, or any meal void of veggies or fruit. Breakfast is not included in count. NOTE: By these terms, a meal can be neither healthy nor unhealthy. These are neutral meals which I still need to watch my portions on, but will not be tracking this challenge. CHALLENGE GOALS: SIDE QUESTS FITNESSBarbell ExercisesDeadlift = lbs, 60 repsBack Squat = lbs, 60 repsIncline Bench = 155 lbs, 60 repsDecline Bench = 155 lbs, 60 repsBench Press = 240 lbs, 60 repsOverhead Press = lbs, 60 repsStanding Curl = lbs, 60 repsDumbell ExercisesBench Press = lbs, 60 repsFly = lbs, 60 repsOverhead Press = lbs, 60 repsStanding Curl = lbs, 60 repsHammer Curl = lbs, 60 repsInverted Row = lbs, 60 repsSide Raise = lbs, 60 repsForearm Curl = lbs, 60 repsReverse Forearm Curl = lbs, 60 repsForearm Twist = lbs, 60 repsGoblet Squat = lbs, 60 repsTricep Ext = lbs, 60 repsMachine ExercisesTricep Pull Down = 65 lbs, 120 repsLeg Press = 1320 lbs, 120 repsSingle Leg Ext = 125 lbs, 120 repsBodyweight ExercisesBox Jump = in, 100 repsLunge = lbs, 100 repsBurpee = lbs, 60 repsMount Climbers = lbs, 120 repsPull Up = lbs, 60 repsChin Up = lbs, 60 repsHammer Pull Up = lbs, 60 repsDip = lbs, 120 repsDive Bomber = lbs, 150 repsPush Up = lbs, 500 repsAbdominal ExercisesCrunch = lbs, 600 repsBicycle Crunch = lbs, 600 repsLeg Lift = lbs, 200 repsSide Leg Lift = lbs, 350 repsOblique Twist = lbs, 600 repsSide Bend = lbs, 600 repsSide Raise = lbs, 200 repsRollout Wheel = lbs, 300 repsReverse Situp = lbs, 300 repsCardio ExercisesSprinting Distance = meters, 20 repsJogging Distance = miles, 6 reps3 mile Jog = min, 1 reps2 mile Jog = min, 2 reps1 mile Jog = min, 3 repsDIETDiet & HealthSkin and Lip Care = 40 qty Dr Pepper = 230 fl ozHealthy Meals = 34 qtyUnhealthy Food = 18 qtyBrush & Floss = 120 qty LIFECareerFamily & HomeChores = 50 hrsNF CommunityChallenge Thread = 6 qtyBattle Log = 40 qtyEpic Quest = 2 qtyMini Challenge = 6 qtyNew Follow = 1 qtyFriend Thread = 6 qtyToastmastersManual Lessons = 2 qtyMeeting Roles = 4 qtyTable Topics = 3 qtyJediIJRS Personal 101 = 2 qtyJedi Reading = 500 minGeocaching
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