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Jaggard
18 October 2006, 07:12 PM
As I was typing; in response to the idea that Annakin was created by the will of the force tempting Darth plaugus to create a child through force (midi) manipulation; I got to wonder what that intales.

For some anime fans (Full Metal Alchemist) and some actual alchemist out there this brings up the idea of Homonculi. A sort of created being, with body and spirit but no soul (or in some cases body and soul but no spirit). Often thought of in terms of the golems of mythology, but other times refered to in other ways.

If annakin was infact created by sith (alchemy?) and gestated by his mother (whom he is genetically differant from) then he seems to fit the roll of Homonculus quite well.

What does that entail for his children? Luke and leah, half Homunculus? Do they Have souls? Does this make them drastically differant than other people?

It's intresting to ponder this as a what if. Anyone else have any thought?

Lucas Carr
18 October 2006, 08:47 PM
Before I can answer your question, I need a definition from you. In my mind you cannot remove just one thing from the body, spirit, soul trio. Some would even say that spirit and soul is the same thing.

So could you clarify this?

Jaggard
19 October 2006, 10:53 AM
I thought about finding a book or two and useing a quote to help me work it out but the truth is for differant people they all mean differant things.

If you think of Frankenstien He has a body and life through some kind of animating will but he also lacks something present in all humans. The same is true of the myth of the golem in jewish tradition, he had form and life and desire but no soul (such was the providance of god alone to give, not man to bestow on his own creation - at least that's they way I've heard it, I'm no expert on jewish beleif). Even the anime full metal alchemist proposes that the Homunculi have form and desires and an animating will but lack the spirit that makes humans mourn and love and truely live.

In some religious beliefs we have a spirit of earth, a spirit of a tree, and spirits of everything. However spirit does not make those things like us. Rocks don't wander the beaches eating handfulls of sand and discussing the weather.

In alchemy the soul is often described as that which binds the physical to the spirit. It's also described as the factor in our concious mins that show us right from wrong, drives heroic deeds and is mostly the tenant of religion. Some say soul is the fragment of the divine (single or many) given to raise up humanity into the presence of the divine.

In star wars maybe the dark side cave on Dagoba is a spirit manifestation, while the holcron inhabiting jedi are souls (Or maybe the better example of that would be Callista) while OB1s ghost might be soul and spirit without body. That's about as good as I can come up with.

As you can see the ideas are complex, incomplete and don't always agree. So I'd say maybe we can leave the religious dicourse out and really get to the bones of the post. Which is The nature of Anakin.

As a created being he has a body and an animating will but at the same time his flip flopping around the issue of Light and dark seems telling in some way.

Really the thing that brought this to my mind is that he is the result of human creating human from scratch and animating it but that as a construct it is seperate from natural forms.

Other thought about the subject:

Is force ability destined for the created?

Is Annikin the first? The Last?

Can a homunculus become a real boy?
:D

Can real people become homonculi?

does anyone else care about this strange interpretation of facts? :)

edit: and before anyone posts it, test tube babies are the result of two natural things joining in a natural way outside of an enviroment of the parents bodies due to certain problems. It's enabling something to happen that would under other circumstances. Which is something differant.

Jedi_Shadow
19 October 2006, 12:21 PM
I remember a homonculus being used in the little adventure in the back of Galaxy Guide 8: Scouts. It was a large, bat-like creature that could attack things on command and act as eyes, ears, and even mouth of its maker.

Anakin is decidedly not that. He's a thinking, dreaming, loving being, and not some mindless construct. So I guess we should have an established definition of what a homonculus is exactly, and build from there.

Lucas Carr
19 October 2006, 12:27 PM
Whether Anakin was created by the midichlorians without outside interference or Darth Plagius, or anyone else, somehow influenced them in this act of creation, I still think that Anakin is a normal human with a high midichlorian count. Just as if he was a naturally born human with a high midichlorian count.

And to give you my answer to your other thoughts on the subject.

Is force ability destined for the created? No

Is Annikin the first? The Last? There isn't enough information. For even if Palpatine's master was the first one to be able to do this in a very long time, he may have created others before coming to Anakin.

Can a homunculus become a real boy? Yes


Can real people become homonculi? Yes

does anyone else care about this strange interpretation of facts? Not really. ;)

Jaggard
19 October 2006, 07:41 PM
sigh, as with most things already discussed in this topic the actual definition of Homonculus changes from source to source as does the specifications of the concept of a golem.

In Jewish folklore, a golem (вемн, sometimes, as in Yiddish, pronounced goilem) is an animated being created entirely from inanimate matter.

In various works of fantasy and science fiction, the term "homunculus" describes any man-made humans or humanoid creatures that are created via alchemy or magic.

Those are quotes from somewhere else online that discribe what I was going for.

The actual history of the Homonculi, and the golem vary form mini people (the word actually stems from the words for mini men), to those that are human shaped but grossly disfigured servants of a person.

The Galaxy guide quote above and D&D referances are way off in left feild for most of it.

A common factor of all is that a Homonculus starts as stuff you can keep on a shelf in a lab (not alive) it's assembled together in a form pleasing to the desires of the creator, then brought to life by arcane secrets. The creature starts life as a mindless servant (or if given the chance to be born and treated like a child, like an infant learning and growing) who eventually rebels against it's creator; often killing them and running loose in the world. It's very much like the ideas that involve robots and andriods, a man made thing in humanoid form that becomes a being in it's own right but at the same time lacking something because man playing god is folly kind of idea.

All I'm saying is there was no father, he is differant than his mother, something or someone made him.

Ah but I guess it's a moot point. It seems I'm the only one contemplating this idea.

Ardent
19 October 2006, 08:07 PM
Actually the definition of a homonculus is rather static. What is and isn't classified as a homonculus, however, varies.

Basically a homonculus is an artificially-created sapient, biological being. Similar to how a droid is an artifically-crated sapient, mechanical being.

Jedi_Shadow
19 October 2006, 10:16 PM
Like a clone then?

If that's the case, then no, Anakin was not a homonculus.

Lucas Carr
20 October 2006, 02:53 AM
When I used the term normal human, I meant that he had spirit, soul, and body. That in every aspect he has what a human has and couldn't be distinguished from humans like homonculus. In other words, he didn't start his existence as a mindless drone. He was born.

And if Palpatine's master initiated the process or not, doesn't change that fact.

But using Ardent's definition in its widest sense, then yes Anakin is a homonculus. Though this widest sense definition would also include clones and test tube babies.

Jaggard
20 October 2006, 10:19 AM
The way I've always had it refered to is something like this:

robotics create androids

genetics creates clones

rabbis (and D&D wizards) create golems

necromancers create undead.

and Alchemists create homonculi

It's created people. Test tube babies in my mind don't count because it is still just enabling the natural reproductive process. If you took chemical soup and build the first cell from scratch I'd say yes, but that's not what TTB are. Cloning come in as the closest thing in my mind. Though I still see it as differant because:
1) the created being is a twin of another being
2) the emphasis is on copying not creating.

But the idea of clones is now often used in place of the idea of homonculus as it used to be. The idea that cloning is dark and unnatural and that the created thing will rebel and destroy. Any movie or book with a rampaging clone is just as easily talking about homonculus. Much of the controversey about cloning could be said to apply to homonculus. But like I said it's more about the creation then the copying and or twinning.

As for definitions:

The concept of a homunculus (Latin for "little man", sometimes spelled "homonculus," plural "homunculi") is often used to illustrate the functioning of a system. In the scientific sense of an unknowable prime actor, it can be viewed as an entity or agent. The term appears to have been first used by the alchemist Paracelsus. He once claimed that he had created a false human being that he referred to as the homunculus. The creature was to have stood no more than 12 inches tall, and did the work usually associated with a golem.

that from wikipedia, however it doesn't cover other referances of fully human looking and size ones in much depth. It breifly touches on a hell boy character (roger the homonculus).

For anime fans a respondant to the article asks
In the Anime series Wolf's Rain (I don't know about the manga), the main character "Cheza" the "Flower Maiden" is said to be created from lost scientific and alchemical knowledge. Considering she's 'made from a lunar flower', would this qualify her for homunculus status?--

All this is really avoiding the topic I was going for.

Is the idea of Annakin being created (not cloned, or test tube baby, or some intermediate step) by some arcane secret or mystical force, significant enough to challenge his status as Human.

Is he still human or is he something other. I chose Homunculus because of referances I'm farmiliar with.

Jedi_Shadow
20 October 2006, 11:40 AM
All this is really avoiding the topic I was going for.

Is the idea of Annakin being created (not cloned, or test tube baby, or some intermediate step) by some arcane secret or mystical force, significant enough to challenge his status as Human.

Is he still human or is he something other. I chose Homunculus because of referances I'm farmiliar with.

I say Anakin is human.

Clones are not born in a natural way, and though there are several social stigmas and status markers regarding clones, at their basic level they are human. They feel, think, dream, and love, in a human way.

The same goes for Anakin. Sure, he has no real father, but in no other way is he different from other humans, unless you want to look at his abilities in the Force and his destiny in the galaxy.

Lucas Carr
20 October 2006, 07:42 PM
Originally posted by Jaggard
The way I've always had it refered to is something like this:

robotics create androids

genetics creates clones

rabbis (and D&D wizards) create golems

necromancers create undead.

and Alchemists create homonculi

It's created people. Test tube babies in my mind don't count because it is still just enabling the natural reproductive process. If you took chemical soup and build the first cell from scratch I'd say yes, but that's not what TTB are. Cloning come in as the closest thing in my mind. Though I still see it as differant because:
1) the created being is a twin of another being
2) the emphasis is on copying not creating.


I was using Ardent's definition in its widest sense. "artificially-created sapient, biological being". A TTB is artificially created, though not in the same way or in the same detail as homonculi.

I was just pointing out that if you used the widest definition to accept Anakin as a homonculus, both clones and TTBs would fulfill the definition too. Because Anakin, as I see it, isn't created from scratch. And even if he was, it was the midichlorians that created him, though that might just be semantical for some.



Is the idea of Annakin being created (not cloned, or test tube baby, or some intermediate step) by some arcane secret or mystical force, significant enough to challenge his status as Human.

Is he still human or is he something other. I chose Homunculus because of referances I'm farmiliar with.

He is human.

Ubiqtorate
21 October 2006, 07:01 AM
I'd say that Anakin is no more a homonculus that a clone or test-tube baby would be a homonculus. The difference would be whether or not he has a father... which would be an interesting philosophical debate - need one have a father to have a soul? That might come back to the clone debate, too, since it can be argued that clones have only either a "father" or a "mother", but not both.

Wedge in Red2
23 October 2006, 03:18 AM
While this is an interesting debate, I must say from my point of view - what does it matter? It seems to me that this is a discussion on semantics and where you pigeon hole Anakin.

Plus, for my 2cr worth - Anakin has a mother, who carried and gave birth to him. A homonculus is apparently (in the Alchemaic sense of the word) created by a scientific process - not carried in a womb, not birthed in a traditional human means. So I don't think he qualifies.

I'm more interested in the "why" of the back story - GL making a link to Anakin as a saviour figure a la Jesus (the immaculate conception) - than the "what".

Jon

Jaggard
24 October 2006, 10:21 AM
It makes a differance in the story just as much or even more then the chosen one bit.

I mean could Annakin become an important and powerful jedi who destroys the order and then turns and wipes out the sith, without being an immaculately concieved chosen one. Yes. So why was it important to include the midichlorians and the profecies?

The idea of the homonculus is that you start with material and you create a seed, which you then inscones in a created egg/womb and after gestation it comes to life as a realise being who is meant as a tool.

If you create a seed and implant it in a human womb where it gestates and becomes a living being you have Annakin in a sense (he is no clone, because he isn't made using living cells to copy another person. It's not parthenogenisis, because he is not female like his mother. He isn't a test tube baby because that requires two living reproductive cells, one from either parent). Unless his mothers dna is used and scrambled; and somehow manages to come out with a functional and even not genetically flawed in some major way; then I'd have to say his mother seems to be more like a surogate (or even akin to one of the Kaminoan cloning vats).

If he then falls into this class, the next important peice is why was he created? As a tool. If we take the long way round:
The force used Plaugus as a tool to create Annakin as a tool to balance the force.
Plaugus used the force as a tool to create Annakin as a tool for the ultimate sith apprentice.
The Jedi used Annakin as a tool as their chosen one. As a banner.

Like Homonculi, Annakins existance is both forced and artifical for the purposes of being the tool of one entity or another. Somewhere along the way annakin turns on his users (much as the stories of homunculi tell) but also in the end finds himself human at the hands of his sons redemption of him.

It becomes a story of becoming human.

In the prequals annakin has passions and desire and will, but his reaction to his mothers death and ultimately to the impending death of his wife. His seeming lack of concience in the former and the rage at his wife being something he can't control seem to point to something in his character that isn't normal. But By the time of his wifes death and definately by the time of his own it seems to change. The character becomes more complex and grows what seeminly was missing.

Was it a gift of the woman who loved him as she died? Did the children he fathered provide that link to the force of change and effectively transmute the forgery of a man into a true person?

I don't suggest that this is what Lucas intended or that this is how it really is but it a differant way of interpreting the data and adds a new layer to the story.

Lucas Carr
24 October 2006, 11:23 AM
It is a new way of looking at it. But one I wouldn't use, so I can't really answer your questions. I see Anakin as a real person and not as something that was created to be used as a tool. Not any more than any other given character is created to be a tool.

Alis_Morningstar
5 November 2006, 06:37 PM
There is one more thing you have forgotten to consider in two manners.

First, under the broad definitions that have been applied to the term homonculus in this thread, you have failed to consider genetic engineering. GE, regardless of how born/raised could be mechanically constructed/modified and could create an "ultimate being" to contain high levels of "midichlorians". Thus, he could be both a homonculus and a human. (By using a human genetic base within a set parameter of genetic variation would still be human.)

Second, does it matter if he is created or had a father? Does it make his deeds any more destined? I believe that Anakin did not fall or bring balance to the Force from prophecies. He had choices to make, and he chose his own path. He chose to be a hero of the Jedi. He chose to love and marry Padme. He consciously chose to fall to the Dark Side in a misguided attempt to save Padme. His own mistakes and choices led him to his "prophisied" fate. The prophecy was, in my opinion, a cautionary tale of what could happen and was a warning of what the balance of the force would mean to the Jedi.

Lucas Carr
6 November 2006, 01:00 AM
From my point of view, a propecy doesn't determine what will happen. Choices determine what will happen. While a prophecy, in advance, informs people of what choice will be made.

Or in other words, a prophecy does in no way take away an individual's choice. But if it is a true prophecy, the person in question will make that choice. Not because of the prophecy but because of who he is.

Kalechaoslord
6 November 2006, 03:50 AM
Think of the prophecy as knowing which question will be asked, and a good view of the position the person will be in. A nexus of choice rather than the actual result

Zanus
6 November 2006, 08:26 AM
Reading thru this thread, I found it interesting, but had some questions I have not seen answers too, here or elsewhere. and noticed there was a part of the original post that has been strayed from, probably to avoid the religious impact of it.

First, the strayed part: Body, Spirit and Soul. It was mentioned initially 'what if one of these was missing' in effect. I would think that if one of these aspects where missing, the Jedi would notice there was something seriously 'off' in anakin, other then just his dark shadows. And I really don't think he would be as pationate in everything he did or emote so much (however badly done).

As far as my questions: Is there anything from Lucas that covers how Anakin came to be besides the vague 'emaculate conception' reference in Ep1? I have noticed he tends to think things out quite a bit and probably has a reference somewhere that gives at least some more detail. Is this where the Darth Plagius reference comes in? Or is this conjecture from other sources? I just want to know this since it is brought up so many times and appears to be relavent to the topic. I think if it is known for sure what Lucas had to say on the topic of Anakins creation it might help this discussion, or at least my thinking within it, along.

Jedi_Shadow
6 November 2006, 09:04 AM
Is there anything from Lucas that covers how Anakin came to be besides the vague 'emaculate conception' reference in Ep1? ... Is this where the Darth Plagius reference comes in? Or is this conjecture from other sources?

Not that I know of. The connection between Anakin's conception and Plagueis' research has no official connection, though that may change with the upcoming Plagueis novel. Until then, all discussion on it is speculative.

Jaggard
14 December 2006, 12:40 PM
anyone read Mary Shelleys Frankenstien? No movies (they fail horribly to capture the characters of the book.

I see a lot of paralells between "the Destroyer" and Annakin. He seems also passionate and reasoned and super human but decidedly not humane in his reactions to the world. You're left question what is the fault of his being what he has become.

No one else sees the paralells?

As for why it matters; it's a new depth to characters, and it takes a weak story element (virgin birth, and chosen one syndrome) and turns it into a philosophical question of the nature of being and what makes one human (the term here is used as a means to describe human nature and being as opposed to species which gets muddled in the sci-fi setting, and which sentient and sapient do not fully cover or account for).

As for the sith creation of Annakin question, this is to me, possable as a explaination. Disreguarding all out of universe interviews and debates it is never explicitly proven a lie, or the truth. To me and my understanding of the universe that makes it a bit of schodigners cat. Both viable and not at the same time and hence to exploration of it.

(and please before we start thumping our copies of the Lucas holy scriptures, remember that the whole thing is a peice of fictional artwork for the amusments of the masses.)

VOID
15 December 2006, 08:31 PM
Originally posted by Jaggard
it takes a weak story element (virgin birth, and chosen one syndrome)

Anakins mother said there was no father. ;)

There are lots of very rational explanations.

Maybe she was raped and suppressed the memory, fabricating a story that made her feel better.

Maybe not all wandering Jedi (or dark or fallen Jedi) are as ethical and chaste as they are supposed to be. "Hey, young lady. You want to make out with me. *waves hand* Oh and you will forget about it. *waves hand again*"

We also don't know what she was doing around the time of impregnation. Maybe there were so many potential fathers, that she just tries to suppress her past. She makes quite a traumatized impression on me, to the degree that she seems outright drugged in some scenes. Like some Prozac junkies.

That does not rule our Palpatine's master as direct or indirect father. Even Palpatine himself would be possible as the father. He obviously could not control the force to create life like his master, but he could still do it in the traditional and very personal way.

To return to the humunculous metaphor: Does anyone know that humunculus story with the pumpkin? Maybe Shmii was just someones pumpkin in this case.