What are the Jedi in Star Wars? The vast history of the most iconic science fiction franchise of all time is essentially built upon the concept of good versus evil, or more specifically, the Jedi versus the Sith. But what are the Jedi all about exactly?
If you are well versed in the Star Wars franchise, you’d be hard-pressed to watch the Star Wars movies in order and not hear the word Jedi thrown around, and the same now goes for the abundance of Star Wars series, too. Some of the most popular and best Star Wars characters are Jedi, and with a vast timeline and lore to absorb it’s essential you know what they actually are.
Well, fear not, dear reader, we have got the Jedi explained and can tell you where they came from, what they believe in, and who the most important Jedi among the Star Wars cast are, too.
The Jedi explained
The Jedi are a group of Force-sensitive warriors who devote themselves to fighting evil in the galaxy and bringing balance to the Force.
They have been around for over a thousand generations and are largely pacifistic people, only using their incredible combat skills when absolutely necessary.
Generally speaking, the Jedi are the good guys in the Star Wars movies. They stand up for the little guy, fighting for the preservation of democracy. The strict rules of the Jedi Code can lead to some morally gray areas, though, such as the problematic detachment from emotion, for example, but they mean well.
Their sworn enemy, the Sith, use fear and hatred to indoctrinate powerful young people into joining the Dark Side of the Force, while the Jedi promote peace and patience as the key components of the Light Side of the Force.
Jedi use a weapon known as a lightsaber, which is essentially a sword made of light energy capable of devastating damage. The Jedi normally have green or blue lightsabers, though they have been known to have other colors, such as white, yellow, and purple.
Who are the most important Jedi?
Perhaps the most important and most famous Jedi of all is Luke Skywalker. I mean, the Skywalker saga is the heart and soul of the Star Wars timeline, so it figures that Luke Skywalker would be integral to the story. He is also the character who does the most in helping the Rebellion to defeat the Galactic Empire and Emperor Palpatine.
Luke is pretty much the only Jedi we spend any time within the Original Trilogy, but he does meet a couple of legendary heroes along the way. First of all, there’s Obi-Wan Kenobi, a Jedi Master turned hermit who went into hiding after Order 66 and seeing his former apprentice, Anakin Skywalker fall to the dark side of the Sith and become Darth Vader.
Then, there’s Yoda, who we’re pretty sure everyone has at least seen a picture of before. This little green guy first appeared in the ’80s movie The Empire Strikes Back. He is one of the most powerful and wisest Jedi of all, having seen pretty much all there is to see in the galaxy.
In the prequel trilogy of 2000s movies, Qui-Gon Jinn is a notable Jedi who is the master of Obi-Wan Kenobi, serving on the Jedi Council alongside Yoda and Mace Windu. Qui-Gon also identifies and insists that a young Anakin be trained in the way of the Jedi, which ultimately leads to one of the most fearsome, and arguably the best Star Wars villain of all time being created.
Years after, in the Disney sequel trilogy, we were introduced to Rey. After escaping Jakku, Rey discovers she is Force sensitive and trains in the way of the Jedi under Luke Skywalker and, later, his sister Princess Leia.
But, honestly, all our attention right now is focussed on Ahsoka Tano. An ex-Jedi who used to be the Padawan of Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka decided to forge her own path and help the Rebellion along the way. Now she’s got her own Disney Plus show which sees her hunting down Grand Admiral Thrawn, and so far it’s pretty great.
The most notable Jedi
- Luke Skywalker
- Anakin Skywalker
- Obi-Wan Kenobi
- Qui-Gon Jinn
- Ahsoka Tano
- Mace Windu
What are the Jedi ranks?
There are seven ranks of Jedi you have to work through. The most powerful is that of a Grand Master. But, you have to start at the bottom, as a youngling, before moving on to being a Padawan, and then you can reach the dizzying heights of being a Knight and a Master, before joining the Jedi Council and establishing yourself within the Order.
Here are all the Jedi Ranks:
- Council member
- Master of the Order
- Grand Master
To keep up to date with the new series Ahsoka, check out our guide to the Ahsoka release schedule and learn how Ahsoka Tano survived Order 66 in the saddest way possible. You can also find out more about the Eye of Sion, the Pathway to Peridea, and the Nightsisters of Dathomir. Or, you can dive into our guides on the Skywalker family tree, The Acolyte release date, and all the new Star Wars movies heading our way for more franchise fun.