Jeskai Color Philosophy Slicing the Pie
Hello, friends; I am so glad you could join me for another installment of Slicing the Pie. Today we will be continuing the series with the wedge of Jeskai. Here we have one of those cases where I was stuck on the brainstorming side of it for a while, always trying to think of how to be represent this combination, and, well, I’ve grown to really appreciate this wedge because of it. It truly is one of those philosophies that have grown on me and become one of my favorites, so I am excited to share what I have found with you. So, sit down, get comfortable, and let’s talk Jeskai, the wedge that asks: is any idea worth holding if it cannot be put to the test?
For all the fans of the series, I am sure you know that when we discuss color philosophy, and especially shards and wedges, it is important to set up a basis for the discussion, or as I like to call it, a framework. But for those of you who are new here, the framework is my way of setting up guidelines, so to speak, for understanding the combination being discussed, as unlike dual and single-color philosophies, there are truly few examples in the game at the moment. Because of this, we will have to make assumptions based on what we do know and build our ideas from there. Now, don't worry; I won’t frontload all this information on you. Instead, let’s move through the steps one by one, expanding each part of the framework as we go.
The point that I always like to begin with when talking about wedges specifically is the allied paring within the wedge. In the case of Jeskai, our three colors present are White, Blue, and Red with Blue and White being our allied pair. The reason that the allied pair is important is that when coming up with concepts within the wedge, we have two colors who are more closely aligned with each other, and in turn will more likely agree with each other. This isn't to say that Red isn't a factor; it’s just more of an outside influence. So, let’s start things off with expanding on what White and Blue, when combined, believe in.
White-Blue is the combination that values the structures which accommodate the perfection of self and society. It sees the truest ideal as one that sets up not just yourself, but others, for success, always looking on how these things can be improved. To do this, it creates an ever-evolving system of order, law, and infrastructure. At the same time, it is the color combination that values self-reflection in the pursuit of betterment through discipline. In simplest terms, Blue-White is the combination of perfection through order. This tells us that Jeskai is a wedge always concerned with the improvement of not just oneself but the world around it, all in an effort to bring about a better world because of it, a goal that always moves forward.
Alright, with that covered, it is still important to talk about the outsider, or enemy color, present within the wedge we are discussing, as this color will bring in influences that add nuance to this already established ideal. In the case of Jeskai, our enemy color is Red.
So, what does Red believe? Well, it’s not that Red actively believes in anything; it would be the first to tell you that it simply follows what its heart desires. It is the color that embodies every spectrum of human emotion. It can be violent and aggressive, or it can compassionate and loyal.
When thinking of Red, it’s all a matter of impulse, for mindfulness leads to doubt and doubt is the only wrong path.
So then, what does this mean in terms of Jeskai? Well, we all know that sometimes White and Blue’s decisions lack empathy. Sure, White wants to do what’s right, but it hardly asks what’s right to each individual. With Red along, Jeskai is very aware of its humanity. It must always grapple with its impulses, all while maintaining its discipline and forward thinking. As you could imagine, this is quite an inner battle, but that's just the inner conflict that enemy colors bring to the table.
Alright, that's the first two steps covered when building our framework, but we still have one more aspect to cover, and that is discussing what the missing colors tell us about Jeskai, as their absence is yet another avenue for understanding a wedge or shard. In the cases of Jeskai, our missing colors are Black and Green.
Let’s start things off with Black. Black is the color of self-interest, and a hunger for power. With a lack of Black mana, we know that Jeskai is not the combination to focus only on what it needs. It is able to look to how it can be of service of others, or at the very least, holds compassion in its heart. Next, we have Green, the color of tradition and harmony. With a lack of Green mana in Jeskai, we know that it is not the kind of combination that will get bogged down in the old way, and is focused on always improving what came before. Also, it does not mind fighting for its place, or upholding its ideals, as conflict breeds evolution and harmony breeds stagnati
OK, there you have it: the framework for the wedge of Jeskai. With this at our disposal, it becomes easier to find possible philosophies that lie within this combination. In this video, I will cover three, but remember that there are always more philosophies to be discovered, so if you have any new ideas about Jeskai, or ways to tweak the ones I bring up, then be sure to let me know in the comments as I read each one. Also, if you are enjoying the video so far, then this is as good a time as any to hit that subscribe button so you don't miss any future content, and hit that like button as it lets me know you enjoy my work. Thanks again, and with that, let’s cover the first philosophy, and that is...
True Self Through Discipline
...True self through discipline. Here we have an ideal that desires to utilize the explosive energy of Red, and the need for introspective self-discovery of Blue. Jeskai is able to achieve this lofty goal through the discipline found in White. What this means, essentially, is that Jeskai understands that there are two strong and yet opposing forces within us that wish to take precedence, and yet it can balance these things by keeping a level of control. There is an ever-present force created when Red and Blue come together – one that is always waiting to explode forth – but instead of having it wreak havoc, it can be focused, becoming an energy that surpasses all. I think the only way I can illustrate what I mean is through breaking down each color present.
In this context, Red is the core, the drive. It’s the heart, the impulse; a sort of motivating force that must be respected. Then there is Blue; this color represents the mindfulness and forethought that dares to utilize every aspect of its being in order to find out what is the conclusion of its very existence. Then it takes White's discipline and systems of self-governance to grasp at both energies and pull them together to create something that could not be possible if it weren't for the colors present.
So, what does this even look like? Well, let’s imagine what happens when you take all of these aspects and give it a physical representation. I first think of those who practice the martial arts, of course. What we have here are people who embrace the raw aggression and physical output that the human body is capable of, then they harness that energy though discipline and regimental hierarchies of skill, finally applying learned techniques to add a level of efficiency and purpose.
Now, of course, this is all well and good, and honestly one you probably saw coming. Nonetheless, it’s one that I had to bring up, as it’s a concept that I am a big fan of. Now, let’s shift things from the self and move on to an aspect of Jeskai that could be applied to society as a whole, or at least small groups, in a philosophy I like to call...
Prosperity in a Creative Society
...Prosperity in a creative society. There is no way we could talk about a wedge that contains both White and Blue without discussing how the given combination would view and shape society. Now, this discussion becomes even more interesting when you include a color like Red, a color that has little care for society, or at least structures that restrict one’s ability to act out its impulses, but as I said at the top, Red is but an outsider here and is forced into a position that merely influences the wedge’s philosophy. Because of this, it is able to forgo some freedoms in order to facilitate freedom of expression in others. So, what sort of world would a Jeskai philosophy look like and how would it go about shaping it?
Well, Blue-White is the combination of colors that looks to carefully craft a society that facilitates not just order, but an ever-evolving ideal of perfecting society. This means structures that stop all forms of chaos in order to better focus on how it can iterate on the culture it finds itself in. This includes a focus on learning, philosophy, and the infrastructures that facilitate self-improvement. This, of course, is far too cold of a world for Red, and lacks a key component: creativity. You see, while White and Blue are willing to work at things, and are never satisfied, they still lack that human aspect of art, creativity, and culture. So, what this gives us is an ideal that not just creates a world where its inhabitants prosper but also flourish. Jeskai says that the human mind does not just contain a need to learn and find peace, but to also fulfill its imaginative needs. Humans are beings of creative design, and it’s in leaning into this impulsive ingenuity that Jeskai allows us to actually find the perfection of humankind.
In White, we have the structures that allow for peace, and in peace we can concentrate on what is important to us. In Blue, there is a need to work at a skill and discover something new that lies within us, and finally, Red says that it’s not just in intellect that we can find fulfillment; it’s also in our creativity and passion. We see glimpses of this when we bring together Red and Blue, a combination of creative expression through science, and to some degree, art. So, in the end, what we have is a society that creates an environment where art and science are supported in equal measure. And a society where all are free to pursue a skill that gives them a sense of value and meaning to their life will be a better society for it. Alright, let’s cover one last ideal of Jeskai, and oddly enough, I'm not sure I would call this one a philosophy exactly; rather a system for Jeskai to come to its conclusions, and that is...
Wisdom Through Contest
...Wisdom through contest. This is an ideal of Jeskai that states simply enough: “no idea is worth considering unless it can be put to the test, and in turn, no philosophy can shape its society unless it can stand against others.” It is a way of thinking that is focused on challenging ways of thought, all in order to create a society that is better for it, one where each avenue is discussed until the clearest way reveals itself. In simplest terms, thought brought to action in service of the people. Let’s break it down into the colors present and then move onto a bit of an example of what I mean. In White, we have the even and open playing field for discussion, one with the aim of making society better. In Blue, we have the need to learn, discuss, and perfect, and in Red, we have the passion and desire to put those ideas to the test.
What I find most interesting here is that philosophical thinking is something that comes pretty easily to Jeskai because of the combination of White and Blue. What you might remember from the video I made covering that combination (and I'll have a link for that one in the description if you haven't) is that White-Blue tends to be focused on philosophy, and finds it actually quite important to society. Where White on its own would look to a higher power for answers – usually a religion – it instead moves towards a more flexible, intelligence-based way of governance, all because of the presence of Blue. So, instead of looking upwards as White might be prone to do, it instead looks inward to the wisdom we all hold within our own minds. What Red brings to the table is a passion to share and test those ideas, because as we established earlier, no idea is worth considering unless it can be put to the test.
So, what does this look like? Well, I think it’s quite simple, really. What we have is a society that wishes to perfect itself through the use of ever-evolving wisdom; wisdom decided on through debate. It’s a people who value the highest forms of thought, all with an aim to create a better world. This version of Jeskai states that “far too many nations fall under the weight of stupidity, and only in the testing and refining of thought, in a manner that is safe for all, can we come to a conclusion that is better for all.”
When you have a philosophy that combines the heart, the soul, and the mind, you end up with concepts that are as close to the human condition as any philosophy can have. It’s aggression, impulse, and compassion. It's curiosity, intellect, and wisdom; all held within the container of our body and given purpose by our soul. Jeskai may stumble at times, as it grapples with the forces within, but it will always find its footing and learn something about itself because of it.
This idea is not just for the self, though; whether we are one or many, there will always be conflicting ideas and the need to express them, but if we can all adhere to Jeskai's way, we can instead turn that into a mode of progress. This can mean creating spaces where we are able to express ourselves in safe way, either through the debate of ideas, or the expression of physical mastery. All of these aspects are there to allow us to iterate through expression, in a manner where no idea or endeavor is wrong inherently – it simply must prove its merit. Because at the end of the day, to Jeskai, no idea is worth considering if it cannot first prove its merit.
Well, there it is: Jeskai! I honestly am so happy to have finished this one. This wedge has been sitting in the back of mind for so long, and yet I wasn't sure how to approach it. I truly hope you enjoyed it, and if you did, make sure to become a subscriber of this site down below. Thanks again; I appreciate all of the support, and with that, I'll catch you in the Multiverse. bye!
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