Jedi in the Lotus
|Jedi in the Lotus|
The Jedi in the Lotus cover
|Cover artist||Andreas Nilsson|
The Jedi in the Lotus is a book by Steven J. Rosen (Satyaraja Dasa) published in 2010 by Arktos. It discusses the influence of Hinduism, especially as understood and described by the mythologist Joseph Campbell, on the Star Wars movie series. Describing the nature of these influences, Rosen also sets out to find many more analogies between the character of the Jedi and those being initiated in the Vaishnava tradition of India. He also presents evidence of surprising technological advances in Vedic times.
Book Cover Text
"The Jedi in the Lotus is the first-ever examination of the Star Wars universe from a Hindu perspective, illuminating many hitherto undiscovered aspects of the background and meaning of the widely acclaimed film series.
We are shown how its creators were influenced by the famed mythologist, Joseph Campbell, whose reading of the ancient Indian Epics, the Ramayana and Mahabharata, can be seen throughout the Star Wars films. This book also demonstrates how the metaphysical understanding of the Jedi Knights and the divinity conceived of as ‘the Force’ have resonances with teachings passed down by Hindu gurus and mystics for centuries, and how fantastic worlds and technology similar to that of the Star Wars universe were described in myths that are millennia old — and may even have had some basis in reality.
Finally, The Jedi in the Lotus shows us how the Hindu traditions at the basis of Star Wars offer an alternative vision to the purely materialistic, soulless world of modernity."
Opinions on the Book
"Rosen’s study shows the influence of Star Wars on Joseph Campbell, Mircea Eliade and other major scholars of mythology who were consulted by Lucas to develop his understanding. These scholars were steeped in the lore of the hero in the Mahabharata and Ramayana, as well as other aspects of the Indian tradition. Their theories impacted “the creator of Star Wars,” who said, “I’m telling an old myth in a new way.”
A striking outcome of Rosen’s analysis is possibly to heighten the interest of readers in the relevance of the mythic traditions of India to the sensibility of a modern cinematic artist. With that deeper insight they are given the opportunity through George Lucas’s films to journey imaginatively to participate with him in the reality of India’s ancient mythic experience."
- Charles S. J. White, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus, American University, Washington, D.C.