Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try.
This memorable quote, spoken by Yoda, while training Luke on Dagobah, is one I like and love saying. It’s part of the lore of Star Wars, but it sticks, I think, because it’s true in a lot of things, not just as it applies in using the powers of The Force.
What’s cool about it is that it wraps up a key concept of use of the force – mind over matter. A carefully focused Jedi can move nearly any object, of any size. Luke didn’t quite grasp that, even though he, at the time, had been able to move multiple small objects – no small task, that takes a lot of training. At this point, he’s acquired a need to move a large object, his own ship, since it’s sunken into a nearby bog (Dagobah’s a swamp planet.) Luke doesn’t believe it can be moved by anyone, simply due to its size. This quote stems from Yoda’s “pep talk.”
It’s my favorite because any large task can be simplified in order to take it on, and many seemingly amazing and large feats can be worked up to, with careful training. If you can actually see something being accomplishable in your mind, it gets you that much closer to achieving it yourself. I apply that myself most concretely when I perform, coincidentally, as a Jedi, in a Star Wars fan group I’m in. Before a show in front of an audience, or even a rehearsal, I see my part unfolding in my head, playing it over and over, sometimes miming the motions. That way, the performance just becomes another replay of that, only in real-time.
Check out the quote in context at the Star Wars databank.
I’m a member of Saber Guild, performing as a Jedi knight currently, but working on an additional character in the Star Wars universe. And yes, it is as fun as it looks.
Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? What is it, and why does it move you?