Today on Facebook I got an invitation to an event I just couldn’t pass up: Intergalactic Star Wars Day. Join the event, I did.
Yes, that iconic series of movies and books about Luke, Leia and their father has its own celebratory day. According to the various websites I’ve found, there are no official celebrations, no traditional (or neo-traditional) ways of showing your love of or devotion to these movies. Every website I saw urges you to change your social networking status to a quote from one of the movies, or to quote the movies as much as possible, or even carry around a light saber and wear a robe all day. So speak like my favorite Green Man, I will.
But did you know that there is a legitimate religious movement based on the tenets of the Jedi faith as shown in the movies and books? These are real people who found that their personal beliefs were given a name and terminology by George Lucas’ films. Says JediChurch.org: “Our faith in the force existed well before the fictional Star Wars movies brought popular recognition to the terminology and concepts that our members always innately held, but had difficultly describing in a shared forum… The Jedi church makes no denial that its name and terminology originates from a fictitious past, but the concepts and ideals that are identified by Jedi followers are known for their innate truth. The sun existed before it was given a name, and it could be revered as a God, however, when the sun finally had a human name, it could be written about and communicated with others. The Jedi religion is just like the Sun, it existed before a popular movie gave it a name, and now that it has a name, people all over the world can share their experiences of the Jedi religion, here in the Jedi Church.”
According to TempleOfTheJediOrder.org, being a Jedi does not conflict with any other religious group to which you may already belong. “We believe in Peace, Justice, Love, Learning and using our abilities for Good so it's unlikely our way conflicts with your beliefs and traditions.”
So how can you take action today in a way that’s not just changing a facebook status? If you believe, as stated on JediChurch.org “There is one all powerful force that binds the entire universe together. It is "an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us, penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together”… that morality, good and evil, are all axioms of the force, and that we must listen to the force so that we will know the right thing to do” then you might be a Jedi. To celebrate the day, you can visit this website to register as a member of the Temple of the Jedi Order, a 501c3 non-profit religious organization.
JediChurch.org is urging the many members of Jedi churches world wide to list their faith on the census. Much like various LGBT factions are attempting to “Queer the Census” apparently the Jedi’s want to “Force the Census.” So if you’re a Jedi, be loud and proud when the census takers come to your door.
May the Force be with you!
Jedi Churc logo from jedichurch.org, Temple of the Jedi logo from templeofthejediorder.org, "May the 4th be with you" picture from the Facebook event page.