The Dharma of Star Wars brings together the phenomenon of Star Wars with humanity's profound hunger for the spiritual. Parade magazine recently declared "Jedi Knight" to be the "Best New Religion" and the UK Times reported, "It is George Lucas, rather than St. Luke, who taught today's twentysomethings much of what they first learnt about right and wrong." (And perhaps more famously: in a UK census, some 390,000 British citizens declared "Jedi" to be their official religion. Similarly, a census report in in Australia tallied 70,000 as followers of the Star Wars "faith.") For many, Star Wars was their first taste of religious thought without the dogma and restrictions of organized religion. It awoke in them a certain spirituality that Buddhism, with its emphasis on personal inquiry and self-realization, so fluidly speaks to. The Dharma of Star Wars uses Buddhism and George Lucas' powerful mythos to illuminate each other in a way that speaks directly to the heart. And Bortolin's knowledge and command of the Star Wars galaxy will impress and surprise all his fellow fans!
Matthew Bortolin has camped out for tickets to all the Star Wars movies, and a set of Jedi robes hangs in his closet. He is an ordained member of Thich Nhat Hanh's Order of Interbeing, and has lived in Buddhist monasteries both in the United States and abroad. He lives in Ventura, California.