Yoda is a formidable Jedi, one who displays a wide range of Force abilities and general bad-ass-ery.
There seems to be no limit to what Yoda is capable of and his Force powers are many. His telekinetic abilities are unrivaled and his lightsaber skills are legendary. Buth these are just two examples of the Force abilities he can wield; the full list is extensive.
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What Force Powers Does Yoda Have?
There are many Force powers that any Force-sensitive, including Yoda, can utilize. These powers are not inherently dark side or light side.
These powers often manifest naturally and can be further developed over time.
Some of these basic Force powers include:
Enhancing physical abilities – this includes augmenting strength, reflexes, speed, and more. This Force technique can be used to influence everything from the speed at which you throw a punch to how and when you feel hunger.
Force Sense – this ability allows Force-sensitives to sense emotions, danger, and even larger disturbances in the Force.
Force Detect – this Force power most often manifests by allowing the user to sense living things.
Telekinesis – arguably one of the most common manifestations of the Force, telekinesis allows users to move objects with the Force. This includes a whole host of related Force powers including:
- Force deflection
- Force wave
- Force barrier
- Force push
- Force crush
Precognition – at its core, precognition can be referred to as a danger sense. This Force power allows the user to sense impending danger. It can also be used to sense a limited view of the future, such as the next card to be dealt in a game of Pazaak.
Force Whisper – also referred to as the “Jedi Mind Trick”, this power allows Force users to influence the weak-minded.
What Advanced Force Powers Does Yoda Have?
Many of the common Force powers have advanced variations. Yoda, being the Grand Master of the Jedi, excels at these advanced techniques.
Yoda is unparalleled in his mastery of telekinesis. On Dagobah, he lifts Luke’s X-wing out of the depths of the swamp. And who could forget his battle against Sidious where he throws Senate seats around as if they weighed nothing?
Force deflection is related to telekinesis and allows the user to deflect energy attacks away from themselves using the Force. Energy attacks usually consist of blaster bolts or Force lightning. Force lightning is notoriously difficult to control, and Yoda is one of few Jedi who can deflect and even absorb the energy.
In opposition to deflection, Force stasis allows the user to freeze an object or person in place. Yoda is able to effectively wield this ability against Asajj Ventress, who is a strong Force user herself.
Yoda is also adept at levitation, which is related to telekinesis.
Another advanced skill Yoda possesses is droid detection. While many Force sensitives can only detect other living creatures with the Force, those with advanced skills can detect droids and other mechanical creations (i.e. C-3PO).
Force visions are an advanced form of precognition. These visions allow users to see anywhere from a few minutes to a few years into the future. Yoda is known to be able to take this one step further and invoke Force visions.
What Are Yoda’s Light Side Powers?
For the most part, Force powers are not inherently light or dark. How a Force-sensitive chooses to use a power is what determines if it serves the light side or dark side of the Force.
That being said, there are some Force powers that are uniquely used by the Jedi and other light side wielders of the Force.
Calming aura – this Force power can help soothe oneself and others and enhance meditation and other Force abilities.
Healing – this Force power requires the user to have highly developed Force sense skills (to determine the malady) and to be willing and able to transfer part of their own energy into the patient.
This willingness to make oneself weak for the benefit of another is why this skill is not often used by the Sith or other dark side practitioners.
Force spirit – being able to retain one’s consciousness after death is the pinnacle of light side Force abilities. Only those aligned with the light can make this transition. Yoda is not the first to make this transition, but once he does, he is able to commune with the living better than others.
He is able to repeatedly speak to Luke and retain limited Force abilities, including sending lightning down to strike the uneti tree.
Does Yoda Use Dark Side Powers?
Even though the Force is not inherently dark or light, there are some techniques that can only be utilized by embracing dark side emotions such as anger, pain, and passion.
Though Yoda is firmly in the light when it comes to utilizing the Force, he is very knowledgeable in the ways of the dark side and is able to use this knowledge to influence his abilities.
The most notable example is Force lightning. Force lightning is a raw manifestation of force power. In Yoda’s big battle with Sidious, we see Yoda not only deflect Sidious’s lightning attack but generate one of his own.
Wielding and generating flames with the Force is also considered a dark side art. While there are no clear indications that Yoda was able to conjure flames, there are accounts of him manipulating flames.
While Jedi might use Force sense like a lie detector ability, Sith often use a Mind Probe. This technique delves deeply into the brain to extract the information the Sith desires. Using this power often has irreparable effects on the victim.
Yoda would never use a skill that intentionally harms another being, but his Force Sense skills are so advanced that he is able to gain the same level of information as a Force Probe would.
Yoda’s Unique Powers
In addition to the common Force powers and advanced Force powers that Yoda has mastered, there are a few Force powers he utilizes that are so uncommon that they may be unique to him.
Energy Absorption – instead of simply deflecting energy attacks (i.e. blaster bolts), Yoda can absorb the energy and manipulate it for his own purposes.
Seeing through Force illusions – these illusions are created by powerful practitioners and are Force-imbued objects or locations. The stronger the individual creating the illusion, the stronger you have to be to see through it. Yoda has never failed to see through a Force illusion.
Sensing Force alignment through touch – while other Jedi have been able to detect the dark side in others, i.e. Luke sensing it in Ben Solo, Yoda is the only known individual that can sense a person’s true Force alignment through nothing but touch. It’s a shame he never had cause to shake Palpatine’s hand.
Sensing disturbances in the Force – many Jedi and Sith can sense disturbances in the Force, but few are as affected by it as Yoda. When Order 66 is activated Yoda is physically affected by the Force disturbance.
Force projection – only a few Jedi masters have been able to utilize Force projections, most notably when Luke confronts Kylo Ren. Yoda is also adept in this skill and is even able to use it to communicate telepathically.
Battle meditation – this ability allows you to affect the battlefield and morale of your troops while you are in a deep meditative state. Yoda is able to use this power to great success during the Clone Wars.
Is Yoda the Strongest with the Force?
The number and the strength of the Force powers Yoda can use allow him to rival any Jedi or Sith who has ever lived.
That said, there are some unique powers that Yoda doesn’t utilize or has not shown himself to be particularly adept at. Some of the Force abilities Yoda lacks include:
- Tame animals
- Crowd control
- Dark aura
- Focused rage
- Sith alchemy
- Transfer consciousness
Still, it is unlikely that any Jedi or Sith has ever mastered all possible Force powers. So how do we determine who is/was the strongest with the Force?
Who Was the Strongest Jedi?
Yoda was not the first Jedi, nor was he the last, but how does he rank in strength when it comes to his peers?
Strength in the Force is measured in two ways: raw power and trained ability.
With 900 years spent perfecting his Force abilities, Yoda is arguably the strongest Jedi or Sith who ever lived.
But if we look at raw power, Yoda might not be the strongest ever. Anakin is said to have the most raw potential of any Jedi of his time, yet he is eventually defeated by both Obi-Wan and Luke.
Luke is the strongest Jedi of his time, and even he is taken aback by the raw power possessed by both Ben Solo and Rey.
Considering all of this, we can’t say for sure that Yoda is the strongest Jedi to ever live, but he is definitely one of the strongest.
Could Yoda Beat the Strongest Sith?
Arguably, the strongest Sith is the one who is currently in power, since Sith follow the rule of two.
Yoda does in fact face off against Darth Sidious in Revenge of the Sith. But he doesn’t triumph, nor does he truly fail. The two are evenly matched and Sidious’s plans are too well laid.
Yoda never directly confronts Darth Vader, but instead trains Luke to do so and Luke succeeds.
Considering that he successfully trains Luke to take on Vader, it is likely that Yoda would have been able to defeat him as well, though his age may have hampered him some.
In a fair fight, there is no doubt that Yoda would prevail against any Sith; unfortunately, Sith don’t fight fair.
So yes, Yoda could probably beat the strongest Sith, but victory would not be guaranteed.
Is Yoda ‘the’ strongest? We will never know.
But with his wide range of Force abilities, deep knowledge of the Force, and centuries spent working to improve his skills, he is without a doubt one of the strongest Force-sensitives in Star Wars.
Maybe with time, and the release of new Star Wars stories, another will come along that can rival Yoda’s strength.