Within a few hours of learning they could use the Force,

Rey is using Jedi mind tricks to escape her cell.

Some Jedi take months and years to master Jedi mind trick. How is that possible to figure it out so quickly?

  • I wonder if she learned some tricks when she was being mind-probed and seemed to gain information during that probe?
    – Mikey
    Commented Dec 22, 2015 at 23:07

1 Answer 1


The Alan Dean Foster novelization doesn't offer a clear answer (proper answer is of course "because she is the Shiny New Hero", with subtext of "we are lazy as screenwriters"), but offers some more clarity.

  1. She guessed she would be able to do this because she accidentally pushed Kylo Ren out of her mind and invaded his right before

  2. It took her a couple of tries to succeed. It wasn't quite "instant", though not exactly "years".

If she could push [Kylo Ren] out of her mind and enter his, what else could she do? What might she be able to do with regard to someone else? Someone less skilled, untrained in the ways of the Force? The single guard posted just inside the front of her cell, for example?
He turned toward her, patently unconcerned and not a little bored. She studied him closely. As he was about to speak, she addressed him clearly and firmly—and not only with her voice.
“You will remove these restraints. And you will leave this cell, with the door open, and retire to your living quarters.”
The guard eyed her silently. He did not look in the least intimidated. Her confidence wavering as she shifted slightly in her bonds, she repeated what she had said with as much authority as she could muster.
You will remove these restraints. And you will leave this cell, with the door open, and retire to your living quarters. You will speak of this encounter to no one.”
Raising the heavy, black-and-white rifle he held, he came toward her. Heart pounding, she watched him approach. Was she going to be killed, freed, or maybe laughed at? Halting before her, he looked down into her eyes. When he spoke again, there was a notable alteration in his voice. It was significantly less confrontational and—distant.
“I will remove these restraints. And leave this cell, with the door open, and retire to my living quarters. I will speak of this encounter to no one.”

Please note that years of Jedi training are not always necessary for someone to access their Force abilities:

  • Anakin accessed the Force precognition as a pre-teen while Podracing

  • Luke tapped into the Force to fire his weapons to destroy Death Star after an incredibly short stint of training with Obi-Wan on board Millenium Falcon, where he never trained to aim with the Force

  • EU/Legends canon is replete with similar cases (Corran Horn, Kyp Durron are 2 that instantly come to mind)

  • 3
    The popular theory is that she actually has Jedi training but her memory was wiped for her own protection. Of course, that's only a theory until the next movie comes out.
    – Omegacron
    Commented Dec 22, 2015 at 20:55
  • 2
    @Omegacron - given their ages, that theory really really doesn't seem to work out. Commented Dec 22, 2015 at 21:05
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    It's interesting that the novelization doesn't mention whether she had any pre-existing idea of what could be done with the force - only that she wondered what she was now capable of. She's clearly familiar with some stories of what Luke Skywalker accomplished during the galactic civil war. Maybe she's heard about the Jedi mind trick before?
    – recognizer
    Commented Dec 22, 2015 at 21:27
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    @DVK - not sure what you mean, Rey seems to be a few years younger than Kylo Ren, and it's established that Ren went dark and started wiping out Luke's other students... plural. And then in Rey's vision she sees a young girl in Jedi-like robes saying "Don't leave me" to someone. But, as I said, it's only a theory.
    – Omegacron
    Commented Dec 22, 2015 at 21:34
  • 1
    @Omegacron -scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/111560/… Commented Dec 22, 2015 at 21:52

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