May the Fourth is celebrated every year by Star Wars Fans as “Star Wars Day”. The movie “A New Hope” was released in 1977 on May the 25th however May the Fourth has long been considered an unofficial annual holiday for Star Wars fans around the world. On the day fans offer each other each other the greeting “May the Fourth be with you”. This play on “May the Force be with you” reminds Star Wars fans of the immense impact that the saga has had on people’s lives over the last 41 years.
As a ten year old I was captivated by the heroic deeds of Luke Skywalker and Han Solo in “A New Hope”in 1977. The enigmatic Obi-wan Kenobi and the mysterious Jedi Order inspired me. Darth Vader was terrifying yet compelling. Leia was a new kind of Princess. She was resourceful, independent and strong instead of the helpless and weak sort that needed rescuing by a White Knight.
The special effects, while primitive by today’s standards were completely mind blowing at the time. The Droids added a new whole dimension to the saga. Instead of being menacing robots, they had characters that were cute, comical, innocent and loyal. Droids were human but better, like dogs. Everyone wanted a pet R2D2.
Four decades later I see old school friends, middle aged Fans, who still get excited over Star Wars merchandise and eagerly await the next instalment of movies and books. The Fandom is a global phenomenon and always will be. The Star Wars legacy is for young and old, male and female and every race and nation on Earth. No other work of fantasy unites us more than Star Wars.
Star Wars is made for our times. The Star Wars universe may be set in a “Galaxy far far away” yet it as human a story as the myths and epic tales which define our species throughout history. Star Wars defines the human story as much as the legends of Ulysses, Gilgamesh, King Arthur and Robin Hood through their archetypes and meanings.
Star Wars also offers a philosophy through the fictional Jedi. The Jedi Code is a starting point on the journey to peace, serenity, knowledge, harmony and living in the Force. As a philosophy it is meant to be lived on a daily basis. In our universe one may not be recognized as a Jedi by society but we can still be Jedi. Every day we can commit to improving ourselves by being Jedi.
For some of us it runs even deeper. Years ago as I met my personal “Dark Side”, it was the 12 Steps that pulled me out of the pit of “Rock Bottom”. The Steps led me to the Jedi Path. The Jedi Path has kept me working the Steps and sober.
May the Fourth is another day on the calendar. It is one day where the global Fandom of Star Wars celebrate the creative genius of George Lucas and show their appreciation. For anyone who has taken Star Wars to influence their life at a deeper and more spiritual level, the day is a simple reminder of our inspiration. We pause to celebrate the fictional creation of Lucas. It inspired us to be Jedi. At the same time we keep our feet on the ground while our heads may reside for a time in the clouds. Philosophy is for life and living in the real world one day at a time. Being Jedi is a real world task.
So May the Fourth be with you.
May you have Peace
May you find Serenity
May your Knowledge grow
May your life know Harmony
May the Force be with You.