What follows below is the version of the page as it existed on January 6, 2003. I have created these back-ups for the sake of historical accuracy, since my site and its pages will continue to evolve long after StarDestroyer.Net's attempted "attack on [my] credibility" is forgotten.
We've all seen it . . . the Jedi ability to deflect blaster bolts by use of the lightsabre. It is, arguably, the most useful thing a lightsabre (properly wielded, of course) can do.
The question of whether a lightsabre could deflect the normal beam of a phaser, though an interesting question, shall not be addressed here. However, there's one element to consider:
Phasers are capable of putting out shots somewhat wider that a lightsabre, to say the least, in multi-short-burst, lateral spread, and conical form. Though there should logically be a drop-off in effectiveness at longer ranges, a limited spread (a la Sisko above) should allow for decent range and power versus a Sith opponent.
Thanks to Lee Kelly for the "The Enemy Within"[TOS] cap, Janet for the "Cathexis"[VOY] image. The other image is from "Way of the Warrior"[DS9].