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SPECULATION The Awakening: From Another Point of View

Discussion in 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' started by Julius Fett, Dec 3, 2017.


Do you think that we will see a Force Spirit in The Last Jedi?

Poll closed Dec 13, 2017.
  1. Yes

    18 vote(s)
  2. No

    9 vote(s)
  1. Julius Fett

    Julius Fett Rebel Official

    Jun 12, 2016
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    The Force Awakens is possibly the most intriguing movie title in recent history, raising a great many questions when it was revealed as the title for the seventh entry into the Skywalker Saga.

    Why is it awakening? When was it even resting? What happened to it? What could this possibly mean? Why is this important enough to be a title?

    Nearly three years after the reveal of this title, and on the cusp of the release of the film’s sequel, The Last Jedi, we seem to be under the impression that we’ve got it all figured out: the Force awoke in Rey during the film, and the ramifications of this is that she has, and can manipulate, the Force.

    But what if I told you that it could be so much bigger?

    The Awakening
    From Another Point of View
    The Force Awakens is a film which raises many questions with its title alone, but doesn’t go through any great lengths to answer them. Which is totally fine in many aspects, until you realise that, from the film, we don’t actually know when the titular awakening of the Force actually happens.

    There isn’t a moment in the film where the audience can go “Aha! The Force has just awoken!”. There’s no great display of power by Rey, who the Force is supposedly awakening within, until quite late in the film. Likewise, there is no moment in the film where we can surmise that the Force has awoken in the other primary Force user of the film, Kylo Ren, who is seen displaying his Force prowess from the start of the movie on Jakku. In fact, the only reason that we know that there’s been an awakening is because we are told this by Supreme Leader Snoke that there has been an awakening in the Force. There isn’t even so much as a musical hint that the Force has awoken: the first time we hear any of the Force theme is some forty minutes or so into the film, aboard the Millennium Falcon, when Han Solo is explaining to Rey and Finn what happened to Luke Skywalker, as well as the destruction of a new generation of Jedi.


    The visual dictionary for The Force Awakens, however, reveals that the awakening of the Force coincides with Rey’s and Finn’s adventures on Jakku. Further yet: the awakening is itself a result of a “turbulence in the cosmic Force, a sudden ripple indicating the awakening of newfound ability.” It also states that the cosmic Force has been in a state of dormancy “since the disappearance of Luke Skywalker and the shattering of his fledgling Jedi following.”

    At first glance, this passage doesn’t seem to reveal much of anything. But it just might reveal enough to theorise what the awakening of the cosmic Force would result in, and how this awakening played into The Force Awakens (and how it could play into the history and future we find presented in The Last Jedi).

    Return of the Force Spirits

    In the final arc of The Clone Wars, Yoda initially learns about the path to immortality (i.e. eternal consciousness) from the spirit of Qui-Gon Jinn on Dagobah, before the Force Priestesses test his resolve on the Wellspring of Life, and later on the Sith home world of Moraband.

    On the Wellspring of Life, the Force Priestesses reveal to Yoda that they have achieved what he seeks: to live between the realms of the cosmic Force and the living Force.


    What I’m proposing is that the dormancy of the cosmic Force meant that there weren’t two realms of the Force for the Force spirits to live between, and so they either manifested in some other form or on some other plane of existence, or perhaps even simply ceased to exist during this period, meaning that they could not commune with Luke.

    Now, there are of course many reasons why Luke might go to Ahch-To, but what if one of them is that he wished to commune with the Force spirits of Yoda, Obi-Wan and his father for guidance after the destruction of his Jedi-in-making followers? We know that Dagobah was one of the purest concentrations of the Force in the galaxy, but I think that there’s reason to believe that Ahch-To, supposedly the site of the first Jedi Temple, would be just as strong. The Wellspring of Life had something interesting in common with Dagobah: the place is filled with life and organisms of all sorts, and so I think that the constant flow of life and death of organisms in such places as these could be why they’re so strong in the Force, as they are literally feeding into the cosmic Force (as Qui-Gon says is the case in the same arc from The Clone Wars), and this is looped somewhat due to the concentration of organisms. The death of the living literally creates life for the living. This circle would be evident in the swamps of Dagobah, as the cycle would be repeated with natural ease, as Yoda himself alludes to in The Empire Strikes Back, and so could also be evident in the oceans of Ahch-To.


    If what I’m suggesting is true, then the reawakening of the cosmic Force in The Force Awakens could have brought the Force spirits back into the fold and would have allowed them to communicate with Luke and vice versa, but perhaps it also allowed them to communicate with two others as well: Rey and Ben Solo/Kylo Ren.

    How might the Force Spirits have influenced the events of The Force Awakens?

    The following is something of a separate theory from the above, and I have much less riding on it, but it seemed too interesting a theory to not share it.

    The case for the Force spirits communicating with Rey after The Awakening is a relatively simple one to make, as she observes a Force vision in which she hears both Yoda and Obi-Wan speak, and the latter of which addresses her directly: Rey, these are your first steps. Rey also seems to be addressed by Obi-Wan when talking to Maz Kanata, and both the music and her facial cue seem to be in reaction to hearing what is seemingly said: It’s Ben.

    At 03:50 in this video:

    Enhanced in this video:

    Question is, does this shock her because she’s conversed with the spirit of Ben Kenobi before, when she perhaps thought she was hearing things? Does it shock her because she just experienced an intense Force vision and this confirms that it really did just happen? Or, does it shock her because it’s confirming that the hooded figure in her vision is Ben Solo, who she has previously encountered in some way?

    The same logic could also be applied to suggest why Rey spontaneously fought back against Ben Solo’s probing of her mind, used a mind trick on Daniel Craig the stormtrooper who was planning to tighten her restraints on Starkiller Base, and also when she finally closes her eyes and opens her mind to accepting the Force in the crescendo of her duel with Kylo Ren/Ben Solo: she was listening to the advice of the Force spirits.


    I think that the application of this theory to Kylo Ren/Ben Solo, however, provides what I’d argue are even more intriguing results.

    With much of the first act taking place on Jakku, it would make sense to not notice the ramifications of a return from the beyond for the Force spirits until after The Awakening. As I’ve said before, we have no idea when exactly the Force is awoken in the film.

    Kylo Ren’s demeanour in much of the first act can be described as both calm and composed, but once the story has left the desert planet of Jakku, this completely changes: he is seen to be aggressive and impatient, slashing up some panels aboard the Finalizer after learning that BB-8 got away with the map to Luke Skywalker, and even going so far as to use the Force on one of his subordinates. He becomes less decisive as the film goes on, and seemingly strays from the path that he had seemed so committed to at the start of the film.


    What I’m suggesting is that Anakin’s Force spirit in particular is attempting to pull Ben Solo back to the light side, and this could even be one of the reasons why we don’t hear him during Rey’s Force vision on Takodana.

    Later on in the film, we learn that Kylo Ren has been communing with the ashen helmet which had been donned by his grandfather, Anakin Skywalker, whilst he served the Emperor under the mantle of Darth Vader, asking the helmet to again show him the power of the Dark Side, admitting that he feels the pull to the light. With the knowledge of the masks in the Aftermath trilogy of novels by Chuck Wendig, as well as of the Sith holocron introduced in Rebels, we know that Sith Lords, and probably others who practiced in the arts of the Dark Side, could preserve part of their conscious essence so long that it was attached to an object. It stands to reason, then, that Darth Vader’s conscious essence became attached to his helmet, and so would be capable of showing Ben Solo the power of the Dark Side without the cosmic Force being active, and possibly even appear as a spectre.

    This could further explain the conflict evident in Ben after he murders his father, Han Solo, on a gangway inside of Starkiller Base. Not only was Ben trying to convince himself and his master, Supreme Leader Snoke, that he was evil, but he might have also been attempting to dissuade the Light Side spirit of his own grandfather.


    At the start of the film, as Kylo Ren, he mercilessly kills Lor San Tekka without haste or regret, yet he has a much harder time killing his father. Whilst, yes, Han is his father, what we know from canon seems to suggest that Lor San Tekka might have accompanied both Luke and Ben on some, if not many, of their adventures around the galaxy, and so it would stand to reason that Ben would have some compassion towards him, but he still dispatches of him without a moment of doubt. Could it be that the presence of Anakin’s Force spirit is what helped fuel the inner conflict found in Kylo Ren/Ben Solo as the film goes on?

    What might have caused the cosmic Force to become dormant?

    As for what actually caused the cosmic Force to become dormant, I don’t think that Luke Skywalker’s absence or the destruction of the new generation of Jedi alone would be enough. For comparison, nothing in canon suggests that the Jedi Purge caused a similar dormancy in the cosmic Force, nor does it suggest the reawakening of the cosmic Force when Luke Skywalker began to utilise the Force in A New Hope. My most educated guess would be that the presence of Snoke, after some activity which awakened or freed him, nullified the cosmic Force.


    Perhaps this activity even caused the living Force to feed into Snoke and his awakening/freeing, as opposed to the cosmic Force, which could be a way to explain why it became dormant: after all, if the living Force is constantly feeding the cosmic Force, and all living things produce the living Force which feeds the cosmic Force, then the absence of Luke, nor the destruction of the new generation of Jedi, would cause a state of dormancy.

    Thanks to anyone who took the time to read this! There are now less than two weeks to go until The Last Jedi is released in the majority of its territories, and I hope that, even if this speculation doesn’t end up having an ounce of truth to it, it has at least given you a different, and hopefully unique, perspective to entertain in the meantime!

    #1 Julius Fett, Dec 3, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2017
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  2. master_shaitan

    master_shaitan Jedi General

    Feb 5, 2015
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    Enjoyed that. Will read again tomorrow and respond. Great thoughts!
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  3. Lukee1811

    Lukee1811 Force Sensitive

    Oct 4, 2017
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    Great post! Had to read it twice to properly grasp all the ramifications. Ever considered doing some professional writing?

    We will now soon enough part of the truth. I truly cannot wait to find out what they have made of all this. All the ambiguity and possible outcomes suggest they really have made their homework when it comes to storytelling. While there always has to be a place for constructive criticism with every creative project, I really cannot understand people who are trashing this trilogy. They took the world's most favorite movie franchise and gave it new life. We get new movies every year, several new books, comics etc. A great time to be a Star Wars fan.

    Several great actors have shown their talent to the world - I really like Driver and Ridley and Boyega. I watched some of their other movies and I could see how they improve and develop. All of this is very inspiration to me.
    #3 Lukee1811, Dec 4, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
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  4. Fuzzball

    Fuzzball Force Sensitive

    Dec 10, 2015
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    Brilliant post, @Julius Fett!

    I really like this. I've been wondering since TFA that surely the Jedi Force ghosts (Yoda, Obi-Wan, Anakin) would've been pestering Luke all the damn time to tell his nephew the truth about Vader. After all, Yoda's dying wish was for Luke to "pass on what you have learnt". But with Rey, as soon as "the Force awakens", Yoda and Obi-Wan are communicating with her. Wouldn't they have done the same with young Ben?

    I also like the idea that Snoke caused this dormancy. What if he learnt powers that can shape and manipulate reality (powers the Emperor saught)? Qui-gon supposedly learnt his ability from a Shaman of the Whill, so I like the possibility of Snoke being an ancient Whill who achieved physical immortality.

    Luke going to Anch-To to attempt communication with Force ghosts is another excellent idea. I hope we see them at some point in the Sequels, since it's a pretty significant underlying theme that's been threaded through the entirety of Star Wars. Snoke's a great way of continuing that threaded theme, albeit as a threat to the Jedi counter-acting their Force ghosts. That would take the story to a new level - physical immortality vs spiritual immortality. I would love that. It's a significant theme in mythology and religion, and I think it's only natural for the story to progress in that direction. If there's one thing we've learnt about the similarities between the Jedi and the Sith, it's their lust for greater knowledge of the Force (specifically immortality). I doubt Snoke will be any different in that regard (in fact, given his injuries, you'd think his motivation to immortalise his life essence would be even stronger).

    One thing I'd like to mention about the cosmic Force is the key role midi-chlorains play in all this. They're "the foundation of what connects the Living Force and the Cosmic Force", and it's how the Force Priestesses and Qui-Gon learnt the power of immortality. The planet the Force priestesses resided on, the Wellspring of Life, was the home and birthplace of midi-chlorians.

    "All energy from the Living Force, from all things that have ever lived, feeds into the Cosmic Force, binding everything and communicating to us through the midi-chlorians. Because of this, I can speak to you now."
    ―The spirit of Qui-Gon Jinn, communing with Yoda

    So to draw power from the cosmic Force, to learn the power of immortality, to manifest your essence, requires someone wise, someone who understands midi-chlorians (how to communicate through it, how to manipulate it). Which makes me wonder - how good is Snoke's understanding of those pesky midi-chlorians? Isn't that right, @master_shaitan? ;)
    #4 Fuzzball, Dec 4, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
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