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In the new Star Wars Movie,

Rey is searching for Luke Skywalker to give him his lightsaber.

But as you can see in Episode VI, Luke built his new green one with another handle. Didn't she just know that he already got another one?

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"You don't need it, so 'finders keepers'" would have been a bit rude? – Quentin Feb 16 at 13:47
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Why do you think Rey knows that Luke had a green lightsaber? Luke appears to have quasi-legendary status to her -- she's not sure he exists until she meets Han Solo -- and I'm not sure she'd know details like the colour of his lightsaber. – alexwlchan Feb 16 at 13:53
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It’s been leaked that the new movie starts with Luke saying “Oh, no that’s okay, I built a replacement.” And Rey goes “Oh. Cool. Sorry.” And then leaves the planet. They’re going for more of a low-key Juno vibe with this one. – Paul D. Waite Feb 16 at 14:41
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In line with other questions regarding The Force Awakens, this title is too spoiler-ish and need to be rewritten. – ThePopMachine Feb 16 at 16:49
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I'm more concerned about how she held it out /blade first/. Simple knife safety, there. If that lightsaber had activated it would have made Han's death look tame. An extending blade right through his face! – AJFaraday Feb 16 at 23:00
up vote 72 down vote accepted

She was reaching out to a man who had shut himself away from the galaxy...

...by giving him something that he has a personal connection to — his long-lost lightsaber.

Even if she was aware of a fine detail such as his newer green lightsaber (and there's no reason she would know something like that when it's clearly established in The Force Awakens that the Jedi are more or less legend and myth by that point), giving him a lightsaber so that he can have a lightsaber is not the point.

Giving him something to sway him after shutting himself away for years as a hermit is the point:

...Rey reached into her pack and removed his lightsaber. Taking several steps forward, she held it out to him. A plea. The galaxy's only hope.

(Official novelization, Chapter XVIII)

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1  
I might also point out that she is asking him to come to the aid of the rebellion, fight for the future of the galaxy, and possibly restore balance to the force. Holding out the lightsabre and asking him to take it signifies a call to arms. Presumably Luke (being a powerful Jedi) is aware of the events taking place in the galaxy. – superluminary Feb 18 at 12:41

First of all, Rey offering Luke her weapon shows that she means no harm. But there is much more significance to offering that particular weapon.

The lightsaber belonged to Luke's father before him. It is the only memento he ever had of Anakin Skywalker. It is an object of deep personal significance, and (so far as we know) he thought it was lost forever in Cloud City after his father cut off his hand. He will at the very least be interested to see it again.

Furthermore, while Rey could have stumbled across the lightsaber by blind luck, Luke is likely to believe that she was guided to it by the Force. The fact that Rey has the lightsaber is an indication of her importance and great destiny, which is another reason for her to show it to him.

Rey knows at least some of the lightsaber's history (having been told it on screen by Maz Kanata). She might also know that Luke has a new green lightsaber; Han, Leia, Chewbacca, and C-3P0 are all aware of it and could have told her off camera. But Luke's new lightsaber is irrelevant to her reasons for offering him the old one.

Finally, Rey would have been searching for Luke whether she had his lightsaber or not; she wants to be trained as a Jedi, and it is strongly hinted that Luke knows something about her past and family background.

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Han, Leia, C-3P0, maybe. Chewbacca? I mean, he might be aware of it, but does she even understand Wookieese? – Darrel Hoffman Feb 17 at 14:16
    
What a parallel then. With the spoiled yuppie running around worshipping Vader's helmet, she willingly gives up something (a very powerful something) that was his before his fall. – corsiKa Feb 17 at 15:26
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@DarrelHoffman Citation needed I confess, but isn't there a scene where Chewie hrurrfs something which Rey replies to, and Finn says something like "You understood that??". – Eight-Bit Guru Feb 17 at 16:43
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I always got the impression that most of what Chewie says is basically indistinct emotional outbursts, nothing nearly as complex as "Hey, did you know Luke Skywalker built himself a new lightsabre after losing his father's?" I'll admit that he does possess enough engineering skills to conduct repairs on the Falcon, though that tends to mostly involve just hitting things really hard. – Darrel Hoffman Feb 17 at 17:52
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@DarrelHoffman: Chewie's dialogue with Han in Jabba's dungeon would suggest otherwise. "What's that you say, Chewie? Luke's a Jedi Knight now?" – Royal Canadian Bandit Feb 17 at 22:09

Rey gave Luke the lightsaber, but she was not:

searching for Luke Skywalker to give him his lightsaber

She had it, and she was looking for him, and it was his, but they don't flow in the order you're suggesting. She was looking for him for training; having the light saber was incidental.

Didn't she just know that he already got another one?

In the scene with Rey and Han on the Millennium Falcon, it's made quite clear that she's aware of the legend of Luke Skywalker, but it's also just that - a legend. His place in history was before Rey was even born.

The viewing audience may be aware of small details like that, but these are stories carried by word of mouth over thousands of parsec by (potentially) hundreds of thousands of people. The telephone effect makes it far more likely that any information she has is wrong and/or incomplete.

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I don't believe it is clear that she was looking for training. Perhaps that is something in the book? Do you have a reference? – amalgamate Feb 16 at 17:00
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I should downvote, because a parsec is clearly a measure of speed, according to physicist Dr Solo at least. – Accio_Answer Feb 17 at 9:26
    
Ou universe the Parsec is in fact a measure of distance – jean Feb 17 at 9:50
    
@Accio_Answer: I seem to remember some post-movie justification of the Kessel run being a race between two moving objects, the measure of success being how many parsecs there were between the two when you finished the race. Can't remember when I heard that or why it was used as a justification, but there you go! – Joe Bloggs Feb 18 at 10:40
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The retcon was that the Kessel Run involved navigating between black holes, the closer you could round them, the shorter the total distance... but that really has nothing to do with this question or answer. – T.J.L. Feb 18 at 13:28

Because it belongs to him.

His father built it; he inherited it. Despite Kylo Ren's insistence that it belongs to him as some sort of heir to Vader's legacy, (which the light saber itself refuted by responding to Rey rather than to him when they both reached out with the Force to take it) that light saber belonged to Anakin Skywalker. Vader's light saber was red, like other Sith light sabers.

In returning his property to him, Rey is showing him respect, which is an absolute requirement if she is to become his padawan. He may well lend one of his light sabers (whether one of the two we know of, or some other he or one of his students has since constructed) back to her to use during her training, and may even at some point convey ownership to her outright, but that must follow her acknowledgement of his clear title to his father's light saber.

Besides, her training will not be complete until she builds her own, which will be hers in a way no transfer of ownership can ever truly convey.

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If they make hers pink or some such nonsense, I'm going to freakin lose it. – fractalspawn Feb 16 at 23:37
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@fractalspawn It's okay, Lucas is no longer in charge :) – Jane S Feb 17 at 1:58
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Attachment is forbidden... – T.J.L. Feb 17 at 16:02
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@JaneS - Perhaps, but J.J. isn't either. The new writer/director, doesn't have a huge oeuvre, and I'm not that familiar with it, but it certainly doesn't look like he has an impressive track record of reasonable depictions of women to point to. – T.E.D. Feb 17 at 19:18
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@CodeswithHammer - Well, red sabers are generally for Dark Side users, so I'd expect a pink one to be wielded by the Delores Umbrage of the Star Wars universe. – T.E.D. Feb 17 at 22:50

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