Yoda’s a Dunce

Inspirational, Life

“Do or do not, there is no try.”

Yoda. Widely regarded as one of the wisest movie characters of all time. This mighty green mage has guided many a Jedi through the obstacles of the oh-so-pesky dark side. He’s a smart dude. A futuristic philosopher.

Even if you aren’t overly familiar with Star Wars (I’m certainly not), you’ve probably heard the kwote shown above.

“Do or do not, there is no try.”

It’s a bit of a classic. Posted on the walls of high schools and locker rooms everywhere. It serves as a nice bit of motivation.

It’s a good one, right? It’s cut and dry, but still tactful in that Yoda sort of way. Either you do, or you don’t. Trying doesn’t matter.

Well, I’ve blindly accepted this kwote for basically my entire life. Pretty much because I always thought Yoda was infallible. Whatever he said had to be true. He’s a genius after all. So screw trying. It doesn’t matter when all’s said and done.

But I’ve been thinking. Is that really true? Can we totally discount the power and dignity in the good ol’ college try?

I don’t think so.

Yoda, I’m calling you out. After all the cryptic and profound stuff you say, well, you’re a dunce.

Sure, at the end of the day, we either do things, or we don’t. But it’s not that straightforward. I know, it may seem a bit second grade teacher-ish of me, but I think there’s something to said for giving your all even if you fail.

There’s respect in striving for something. There’s respect in throwing yourself so hard at something that you have nothing left to give. There’s respect in putting all your eggs in one basket, dedicating every part of yourself to accomplish some sort of goal. There’s respect in doing your best. There’s respect in trying.

So it isn’t, “Do or do not, there is no try.” It’s “Try, and do or do not with the satisfaction of trying your absolute hardest.”

You’ll achieve some goals, and you’ll miss others. But you should always take comfort from the fact that you fought like hell.

Yoda, you suck. No matter how dreamy-eyed it sounds, trying counts for something

End Kwote

This post was inspired by my blogger compadre at The Cutter Rambles. You can see his post on the matter by clicking THESE MAGICAL WORDS

5 thoughts on “Yoda’s a Dunce

  1. This is an interesting point and discussion. I have been told by many people over the years, teachers, friends, mangers, that you shouldn’t say “I’ll try” and I think there is a certain validity to that. I don’t think, though it might certainly be implied, that you are never expected to fail. If you attempt to do something and fail, you could say “you did it—just very badly”, though it would be more accurate to say—“you tried” (past tense, after-the-fact). When you say “I’ll try” many people feel that is a cop-out, that you are admitting possible defeat ahead of time, and setting up a scenario where it is acceptable for you to give up after a certain amount of attempt which may or may not be adequate. To me, and from what i have been told over the years, maybe there shouldn’t be an I’ll try” but there’s nothing wrong with “I tried”. Just a thought, but, by the way, even if someone agreed it still wouldn’t mean the old green guy isn’t a dunce. He happily spouted out whatever some Hollywood types wrote for him, and they were pretty great filmmakers, but I’m not sure I’d take life advice from them (maybe career advice, but not how to live a successful and moral life). As always, another thought provoking piece.

    1. Thanks for the read!

      I like that. Instead of “I’ll try” it should be “I tried.” That’s a good philosophy to have, I think.

      And he does seem to be a bit of a dunce. The post that I linked to really points out a lot of his flaws. But, as you said, it’s not really Yoda’s fault that he’s such an idiot. Someone imagined him, so I suppose they’d be at fault.

      Again, thanks for the read

  2. Yes! I’m actually upset I didn’t make this point in my post. The whole “Do or do not” thing is total B.S. What about trying, and failing, learning from your mistakes, and doing it the next time. No wonder the Jedi were exterminated.

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