- "Premonitions… Premonitions… deep questions they are. Sense the future, once all Jedi could; now few alone have the skill. Visions… gifts from the Force, and curses."
Overview[edit | edit source]
- "I have seen the Temple in ruins, the Senate smashed, and Coruscant itself shattered by orbital bombardment from immense ships of impossible design. I have seen Coruscant, the seat of galactic culture, become a jungle far more hostile and alien than any on Haruun Kal. I have seen the end of civilization."
- ―Mace Windu, foreseeing the Battle of Coruscant
Generally, when peering deep into the Force, a Force user had the potential to see events that could happen in the future. Force visions were extremely rare, and uncontrollable. Often, one would meditate to gain a vision, but only a few would actually succeed. Anakin Skywalker and his descendants, particularly his son, Luke, and his grandsons, Jacen Solo and Ben Skywalker, were often prone to Force Visions. They were known to occur sometimes in a Jedi padawan's Trial of the Spirit, preparatory to Knighthood.
Master Yoda felt that visions were of great importance to the Force, and often acted on them as best he could. However, the Jedi warned that the future was always in motion, and that its events were only possible. As such, interpreting a vision by oneself was generally considered dangerous.
Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn, for example, beheld in vision his Padawan Obi-Wan Kenobi, but as "an elder man, alone, living on a desolate planet, his only companions his dark memories." Even so, Qui-Gon had to remind himself, as Yoda taught, that "the future is not fixed, but fluid ... Visions did not have to come true."
Amongst Jedi, the Jedi Seers of the Order were responsible for the majority of visions, and interpreted them for Jedi Consulars. Following the destruction and subsequent reconstruction of the Order, the Jedi Council of Seers took up this role.
Some Jedi and Sith endowed with this Force power were capable of detecting when friends and apprentices were in danger, examining details of past events, and predicting the probable outcome of future actions or events.
Vision-prone Sith, such as Darth Traya, could peer into the future many thousands of years and predict events with great accuracy. In this way, Traya was able to foretell the death of the last of the Mandalorians at the hands of a Jedi.
But unlike the Jedi, the Sith believed—based on experience, or perhaps more often, on their own arrogant self-conception—that visions would always come to pass, that they must unfailingly endeavor to make them realities. Some Sith would even combine their own ideas of what might come to be into their visions.
Darth Sidious was perhaps the most vision-prone Dark Lord of the Sith in history, and used his visionary gifts to ensure his own election as Supreme Chancellor, and his ascension as Galactic Emperor. Regarding his visions Emperor Palpatine consulted with the Prophets of the Dark Side, a Sith splinter group that was dedicated to studying the future through the dark side of the Force.
Force visions were not necessarily limited to the Jedi and Sith, however. Others in the galaxy also experienced visions that might be attributed, it could be argued, to the Force, or "Ashla," or whatever a given culture might call the essential force behind all life in the universe. O-Vieve, the Benevolent Guide of Kegan, for example, saw visions (which Qui-Gon Jinn could not discount) that foretold the coming of a great darkness that surrounded and emanated from the Jedi Knights—an evil that would spread to "engulf" the Jedi Order—but also glimpses or "flashes" of an ominous, destructive future event: "an explosive device sent to destroy an entire planet without a shiver" and "masked soldiers" who would bring "fear and suffering." O-Vieve foresaw an invasion of evil that would "cloak [entire planets] like a black cloud."
But as Yoda taught, ever reminding those in his stewardship of this one constant in what was both a phenomenon and gift, Force vision would continue to have its limitations due to the factors of multiple possibilities or outcomes in any forecast of the future.
For example, in 25 BBY, sixteen-year-old Anakin Skywalker experienced three different incarnations of the same Force vision, the general interpretation of which the Jedi Padawan thought he understood, though not its specifics; but as his Master Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda both warned, there were elements in the dream that came to mean something entirely different from what Skywalker initially interpreted them as meaning. The vision's last manifestation had come to him just after having surfaced from an afternoon swim in the indoor lake at the Jedi Temple, near the Room of a Thousand Fountains.
In the vision, he saw himself commanding a massive fleet; he witnessed a slave revolt of hundreds shouting his name; he beheld his mother, Shmi, in Mos Espa embracing him and heard the sound of her binding cuffs drop to the ground at the touch of his hand upon them. As the vision ended, Anakin knew he'd somehow lost his mother forever, and everyone he'd ever loved. Finally, he heard the echo of strange words: The One Below remains below. While Skywalker immediately confided the dream to his Master, neither Jedi was clear about its meaning. But when they consulted Grand Master Yoda, the ancient Jedi sage gave the meaning of the One Below as being a Koban title, referring to the centuries-long imprisonment by Advozsec warlords of Yaddle, the revered Jedi Master who was of the same species as Yoda. That she was about to leave on a very troubling mission to the planet Mawan was no coincidence: Yoda felt that Anakin's dream was a warning and the answer to the Council's debate about which Jedi team to send with her to address the grave situation that existed there. The visionary Padawan was disappointed at his dream's interpretation, for he had hoped that the time had come at last when he might "step out of his dreams" and return to Tatooine to free the slaves, but most importantly, his own mother.
As it turned out, however, by mission's end, Anakin understood that his original interpretation of the vision emanated from what he wanted the vision to signify, based on his own wishes, hopes, desires. The binding cuffs that clamored to the floor, in fact, turned out to be his own cuffs, falling to the ground at his liberation by Master Yaddle from the captivity of Void in the Force Granta Omega. Skywalker's conviction that his vision revealed that he stood to lose everyone he'd ever loved also took on a new meaning: for he'd come to deeply admire and value Master Yaddle, who ultimately chose to perish for all the inhabitants of the planet's capital city of Naatan, including her fellow Jedi, when she sacrificed herself by creating a Force implosion to absorb into her own being the deadly toxins of an Omega-created dihexalon bomb. Personal desire, as Anakin discovered, could cloud, then, a Force vision's true meaning, just as Yoda had forewarned.
Ego, when combined with power, was also, it seems, a factor that "clouded" visions: Palpatine, in his visions, never saw himself die. Darth Caedus also saw many possible outcomes in his future, yet none of them involved his death. Notwithstanding, Darth Tenebrous was able to calculate the future and foresee his own death, professing that this limitation could be overcome if one's skill in it was prodigious enough.
Known users[edit | edit source]
- "Difficult to see. Always in motion is the future."
- Darth Caedus
- Zayne Carrick
- Darth Cognus
- Jorus C'baoth
- Joruus C'baoth
- Dorsk 81
- Krynda Draay
- Mara Jade Skywalker
- Qui-Gon Jinn
- Obi-Wan Kenobi
- Sha Koon
- Jaden Korr
- Rahm Kota
- Pong Krell
- Galen Marek
- Darth Nox
- Darth Plagueis
- Duron Qel-Droma
- Wolf Sazen
- Bastila Shan
- Roan Shryne
- Anakin Skywalker
- Ben Skywalker
- Cade Skywalker
- Luke Skywalker
- Allana Solo
- Leia Organa Solo
- Jaina Solo Fel
- Meetra Surik
- Osvald Teshik (though not Force-sensitive)
- Raana Tey
- Darth Thanaton
- Sith Emperor Valkorion
- Shado Vao
- Mace Windu
- Darth Zash
- Empire's Wrath
Appearances[edit | edit source]
- "[Darth Plagueis] stretched out with the Force and fell victim to an assault of perplexing images: ferocious battles in deep space; the clashing of lightsabers; partitions of radiant light; a black-helmeted cyborg rising from a table ... Trying desperately to make some sense of the images granted him by the Force, he stood motionless ... He fought to repress the truth. The boy [Anakin] would change the course of history... The boy's actions already echo across the stars..."
- ―Plagueis' Force vision of the rise of the Chosen One
Sources[edit | edit source]
- Star Wars Roleplaying Game
- Dark Empire Sourcebook
- Dark Force Rising Sourcebook
- Tales of the Jedi Companion
- Coruscant and the Core Worlds
- Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords: Prima Official Game Guide
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Star Wars: The Legendary Yoda
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Explorer's Guide
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Encyclopedia
- Star Wars: The Card Game – Balance of the Force (Card: Premonitions of the Future)
- Star Wars: Age of Rebellion Core Rulebook
- LEGO Star Wars: The Dark Side (Non-canonical source) (Non-canonical mention)