Throughout the Star Wars saga, there have been various Jedi who seemingly live on after death, but how is it possible, and what kind of training does it take to become force ghosts?
For most of their lives, Jedi train to harness the Light Side of the Force, using it to protect the galaxy from evil. Some Jedi are more powerful than others, learning abilities that only present themselves to those who dedicate themselves fully to their training. Not every Jedi that dies is able to ‘live on’ after death. It takes a lot of training, even for the most experienced of Jedi Master in Star Wars to learn, but is that the only way?
A Force ghost is a state of immortality. After death, a Jedi’s consciousness is retained and they become one with the Force, although their physical presence disappears. This is what allows certain deceased Jedi the ability to communicate with the living and present themselves almost as they were when they were alive.
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Only a lifetime of following a code of selflessness and sacrifice entitles one to gain the knowledge needed to become a spirit after death, and that is why there have only been a select few in the Star Wars universe that have managed to reach this level. Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda, and Luke Skywalker dedicated their lives to the Jedi way, but there have been others who’ve become spirits after death.
The first Jedi to show signs of spiritual immortality was Qui-Gon Jinn. Whilst he wasn’t able to show himself after death, he was able to communicate with Obi-Wan and Yoda through voice only. If he hadn’t have been murdered by Darth Maul, the Jedi Master would likely have completed his training. Grand Master Yoda was able to learn this ability — as did Obi-Wan Kenobi — meaning that they were visible to Luke Skywalker during the original trilogy.
Anakin Skywalker lived life loosely following the Jedi way. He fell in love (which is forbidden) and murdered Count Dooku whilst defenceless. Although he was incredibly powerful, he never received the training due to his moral ambiguity when it came to the Force. However, due to him fulfilling the Chosen One prophecy by bringing an end to the Sith and sacrificing himself in the process, this became possible.
In some cases, Force ghosts can interact with objects in the living world. Yoda returns as a ghost in Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi and strikes Luke with his walking stick. In Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, Luke Skywalker raises his X-Wing from the sea of Ahch-To so that he can help Rey travel to Exegol and defeat Emperor Palpatine.
Although we only saw Luke as a Force ghost in Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, it seems as though there may be more Jedi to have learned spiritual immortality. The voices of Jedi that rouse Rey back from the brink of death include Kanan Jarrus, Luminara Unduli, Adi Gallia, Mace Windu, Aayla Secura, and fan-favorite Ahsoka Tano, who we assume to be dead at the time of the events from the film.
Ben Solo and Leia both disappear following their deaths, so one can assume they too have become Force ghosts, but this is never confirmed. Still, it is likely Ben Solo’s sacrifice granted him passage to live on after death, and with Leia’s strong ties to the force and a life commited to good, she too is also a at one with the Force.
What are your thoughts on Force spirits? What do you think happened to Ben Solo after he dies, and what are your thoughts on Ahsoka Tano’s off-screen appearance at the end of The Rise of Skywalker? Let us know what you think below.