The Force, the White Current, or even simple magic, whatever appellation one chooses, they all describe the mystical energy field that permeates the universe surrounding everything and flowing through all life. Life creates it and supplements it and in turn lens itself to be used to influence ones surroundings. Throughout the history of the galaxy, for what seems like no rhyme or reason, certain civilizations, species, and individuals have been blessed with a unique affinity to the Force. From the Rakatan Infinite Empire, to the ysalamiri of Wayland, to the members of the Jedi Order, all have learned to harness the power of the Force. Throughout their existence, these beings were branded as everything from gods to mystics to witches as they possessed enormous power over their environment and those who lived therein.
Many have said that great power demands great responsibility and the inhabitants of the galaxy suffered many times over at the hands of those who would use their abilities for personal gain. Often these despots were confronted by those strong in the Force who took up the defense of the oppressed. These incidents eventually spawned an entire philosophy regarding the morality of wielding such power. As the inhabitants of the galaxy came into contact with one another during the advent of space travel, those blessed with Force-sensitivity engaged in dialog to discuss the responsibility of those who would use it.
Monastic orders were formed around those who shared similar beliefs, and throughout the galaxy's history the largest of these orders by far was the Jedi Order. While some orders focused solely on the philosophical and theoretical issues of the Force, there were those, like the Jedi, who included more physical activities in its application. In the face of those who would wield the Force to wage war, the Jedi Order and others like it dedicated themselves to the defense of peace and justice throughout the galaxy - fighting for those who could not fight for themselves.
The philosophies defining how the Force is viewed are as varied as those who are sensitive to it. Some groups believe the Force is nothing more than a tool available to some to make their lives easier. Others view the Force in a more symbolic light. The Jedi Order for instance divides the Force into two dimensions, the Light and the Dark Side. The Jedi believed that certain actions cause one to gravitate to either pole. Others believed that the Force was neither light or dark, but rather uniformly gray and corruption could only come from within the individual. More exotic philosophies, such as those of the the Aing-Tii Monks, viewed the Force as neither light nor dark nor gray, but rather as a rainbow of colors giving them exceptionally unique abilities.