Before the Star Wars franchise became what it was now, the question of what happened to those who trained to be Jedi might not have come up, especially since, until the prequels, the Jedi Order hadn’t been completely fleshed out on the big screen. Some might want to say that it still hasn’t, and they wouldn’t be wrong since, despite the fact that much has been shown and explained, there still isn’t a comprehensive knowledge of what happens to those Jedi who doesn’t complete their training for one reason or another. The unfortunate fact is that while a lot of Force-sensitive individuals were brought to the Jedi temple to be tested when the order was still a dominant force, not all of them were destined to carry a lightsaber as a Jedi Knight. Some still carried lightsabers despite their lack of inclusion in the knighthood, but there were others that went off to fulfill other tasks that were determined by the Council of Reassignment. This wasn’t the most glamorous life for a Jedi, but it was a way to serve the order if they so chose.
Some of those who trained considered it an honor to serve the order in one capacity or another.
The Council of Reassignment is the body that was placed in charge in both the current canon and the Legends canon when it came to assigning those who did not complete their training to one position or another. There are four branches that were created to offer to those who did not complete the training, and those were the Agricultural, Exploration, Educational, and Medical Corps, which were quite important since they helped immensely to keep the Jedi supplied and taken care of since otherwise those of the Order would have to accomplish quite a bit more on their own. In other words, the four different branches were a way for failed padawans to contribute to an order that they were still considered a part of.
Some padawans didn’t consider this an honor.
In a lot of ways, it was kind of the ultimate shame to go through so much training only to fall short. But those who were still dedicated to the Order were often those who realized their own shortcomings and sought to shore them up by learning and developing other skills that could be of value to the Jedi. While they might not have been great fighters and protectors, they were still capable of becoming providers and those who might do their part for the greater good. Another option, however, was to go home, to the place from which they’d been taken, if such was capable of being revealed. Many padawans were taken from their homes as babies once they were identified as Force-sensitive. Imagine that type of homecoming, returning after so long, after a family might have moved on and nearly forgotten their child who was given up to the Jedi. This wasn’t bound to happen in every case, obviously, but at the same time, it’s fair to think that some families might have tried to move forward and begin again.
Obi-Wan Kenobi came close to failing as a Jedi and was a part of the Agricultural Corps.
There are a few famous names among the Jedi Order that did not complete their trials or, barring a successful pairing with a Master, found their future as a Jedi in jeopardy. These individuals either gave way to history or became important in their own way as Obi-Wan Kenobi didn’t have a master initially since no one wanted to take him on as a padawan. Others managed to fade into the background as they were thought of as very little apart from their contributions, much as any common worker would be. The honor of being a Jedi is considered to be so great that it stands to reason that quite a few padawans would be upset to learn that they don’t have the required skill or strength of character to take on such a role. What’s truly unfortunate is that the padawans were, as a result, kind of vulnerable from an emotional standpoint and therefore weren’t ready for the attempts of Darth Sidious and his people when they came to snatch them up.
One has to remember that the Sith had to bolster their ranks somehow at one point in the past.
While it wasn’t spoken of that much, Darth Sidious had to find some way to build his Inquisitor force, and it’s fair to think that he was bent on doing far more with whatever resources he could find. The main goal of the Jedi was to foster the power and skills of those who could not pass the trials, while Sidious saw this as a great way to build his own small army of Force-sensitive warriors.
Not everyone was meant to be a Jedi.
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