Explaining Away the Force

So long, midi-chlorians. For the Colson Center for Christian Worldview, I'm John Stonestreet with The Point.

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The latest “Star Wars” movie has a spiritual lesson for us. Now, let me be clear—the galaxy far, far away is not some kind of biblical allegory. George Lucas’ fictional universe owes far more to Eastern religions than to Christianity.

But as Marc Barnes writes at First Things, the way these movies treat “the Force”—the mystical energy field that gives Jedi their power—tells us a lot.

In the original trilogy, the Jedi Knights train like religious adherents to conform their will to the Force, which guides them and binds the galaxy together. In other words, the Force is spiritual. But in the prequels, writes Barnes, the Force is “irreverently secularized,” explained away as the work of microorganisms that live in our blood.

But recent movies, especially “Rogue One,” are once again treating the Force with a spiritual reverence rather than as a biological power.

This resonates with what we already know to be true: There is a reality beyond the physical world. And stories that embrace the supernatural, rather than explaining it away, are a lot more satisfying.

Further Reading

Rogue One and the Return of Reverence
Marc Barnes | First Things | January 3, 2017


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