Episodes I-III of Star Wars played on television over the weekend. Captivated by the power of the Force, I watched in awe. Those movies never get old. This time around, as I watched a scene involving the Jedi Temple, its grandeur reminded me of artistic recreations of the Temple in Jerusalem. And this seemingly insignificant parallel led me to an intriguing thought experiment. The question: Which famous Jedi is most likely of Jewish descent?
A quick assumption led me to believe that it is Luke Skywalker. After all, Natalie Portman is the actress behind his mother Padme Amidala, Queen and later Senator of Naboo. Furthermore, thanks to Wookieepedia (the Stars Wars Wiki), I was able to find out that the people of Naboo were historically “a pastoral and nomadic people, migrating in tribes” before settling in various city-states. However, before I declared my investigation complete, I continued to read and encountered a disturbing passage. It turns out the humans on Naboo were devoutly polytheistic and “worshipped many allegorical deities.” Needless to say, that’s probably not a good fit.
I began working through the Jedi Order from top down, starting with Yoda and Mace Windu. Both are the epitome of monastic. They quietly observe, trying always to remain detached and objective. But in my experience, Jewish people are not reserved, and they are certainly not quiet.
Jewish people are more aptly described as passionate and opinionated;characteristics displayed by Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Anakin Skywalker. All three portrayed rebellious streaks and were not afraid to express their feelings to their superiors. Among them, I think Kenobi appears most Jewish, not least because of his timely wit and brain power. He also has a penchant for sarcasm, thought-provoking questions, and dispute settlement (maybe his father dabbled in Galactic Law). On top of all that, the rabbinical-style beard he kept for most of his life all but confirms his Jewish ancestry.