Star Wars Spirituality:
Beyond the Hype

On May 4, ABC Evening News reported that the day the new Star Wars movie (The Phantom Menace) opens to the public, it is estimated that 2.2 million workers will skip work to see it, costing American industry $300 million.

International conventions coincide with the May 19 release. Huge Web sites cater to fans. Pundits compare it to the Second Coming. Yet director and producer George Lucas, in an interview with CNN, insists that it's just a movie and cannot live up to the hype.

However, it's not just an enchanting movie to many. The Dallas Morning News quoted one Star Wars faithful, "[the saga is] chock-full of archetypal goodness." Another said, "It impressed on me many values and morals." But, under the surface, are these morals anchored in truth? A CNN Interactive article highlights the passing on of Star Wars rites of passage from fathers to sons. Diehard fan and divorced dad, Michael Wistock testifies that, "Star Wars is the glue that holds us [my son and me] together." He, like many, feels that Star Wars is simply the retelling of "ancient myth or lessons from the Bible."

But do these futuristic tales of good and evil, relational struggles and a fuzzy spiritual "force" belong in the same basket as Biblical truth? What drives this craze? What are the roots of these philosophies? Our special focus explores deeper...

—Leadership University Editor/Webmaster, Byron Barlowe

Feature Articles:

Elves, Wookies and Fanboys: Star Wars And Our Need For Stories
Roberto Rivera
When a movie inspires religious devotion, there's more at work than great cinematography.

George Lucas, the Force and God
Terry Mattingly
"Some Christians hail Star Wars as evidence of a cultural search for moral absolutes. On the World Wide Web, others use the films as glowing icons that teach Eastern philosophy. Welcome to the theological mall."

The New Age Movement
Robert Pyne
"The New Age Movement is not a conspiracy or a cult. It is a loose collection of very diverse people and groups. It is a religious trend, not a religious organization. There are several beliefs that are distinctively 'New Age.' One of these beliefs is monism, the idea that all of reality is essentially one." The Star Wars philosophy includes this tenet.

Related Articles:

The Artful Dodger: A Skeptic Confronts Christianity
Dr. Alan Scholes
Skeptic-turned-theologian Dr. Alan Scholes traces his discovery of the various parts of man--body, soul, spirit--and how we can relate to a real, live, entity known as God.

New Age Mush
Charlotte Allen
The author reviews the book, Belonging To The Universe.

Christ In a New Age
Russ Wise
The author explains the rise of New Age thinking and its implications, among them that man is not responsible to a Person and "that [God] is an energy that is in all things; therefore, you are divine, along with the rest of creation." Wise then guides the reader through a Christian response, including evangelism tips.

Truth and Finite Limitations
H. D. Lewis
Philosopher H. D. Lewis, renowned for his defense of anthropological dualism, discusses this concept of humankind's distinct body and spirit, which contrasts with the philosophy of elevated consciousness.

Connecting With the Divine
Marilyn Adamson
Many Star Wars enthusiasts (and others) are asking how they can connect with the divine force of the universe. This is a brief overview of various religions' views on how, starting with the two that are most woven into the Star Wars themes: Hinduism and, especially, New Age.

Related Resources:

World Religions Index
As the wise king Solomon stated in Ecclesiastes, "There is nothing new under the sun." The age-old religious system of spiritualism is evident in Star Wars' "theology." Here is the bottom line on this system regarding view of divinity.

Biblical Christianity
World Religions Index
A corresponding bottom line definition of the beliefs of Scriptural Christian doctrine on God, etc.


These Related Resources are part of the World Religions Index, a site for equipping Christians to understand other world faiths and religious philosophies.

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