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There are at least two incidents in the canon which suggest that lightsabers attract Force sensitives:

  • Ezra was attracted to Kanan's lightsaber in the pilot episode of Star Wars: Rebels TV show.

  • Rey was attracted to Anakin's lightsaber in Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie.

Here, the attractions are described as a call from a lightsaber. Also, in both incidents, novice Force sensitives (who didn't know that they have superpowers) were attracted. Maybe, it has to do with some weird signal they never experienced before. But, why would they experience that signal in the first place?

Is there any canon explanation (or, Legends) why lightsabers attract Force sensitives? Last I checked, lightsabers are a normal piece of technology which anyone can construct and use (although non-Force guys won't be able to fully master it). Jedi rituals (of finding crystal irregularities with the Force and building lightsaber) looks to me like a test (you may need to use the Force precisely to detect crystal irregularities) and to get to know your stuff better. Blasters certainly don't attract anyone. Is there something in lightsabers (e.g. crystals) which are active in the Force (I can't use Force sensitive word for a dead object; if you have better word/ phrase, please replace)?

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    I'm seem to recall that Ezra was attracted to Kanan's holocron, not his lightsaber. – TylerH Jan 8 '16 at 4:34
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    @TylerH No, it was lightsaber. Although, holocron was in the same drawer, he was actually attracted to the lightsaber. He later told it to Kanan: "You won't believe this but this thing wanted me to take it." youtu.be/FuNv3mxkaiY – I Love You 3000 Jan 8 '16 at 4:45
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It's actually the other way around, for the most part.

Lightsabers (and other objects) don't attract Jedi in Legends, (which you tagged). Jedi are attracted to the items via the Force. That lightsabers are significant to the Jedi is more or less insignificant -- Jedi are also attracted to Star Maps, Holocrons, and even locations. This, more or less, appears to be an extension of the Living Force guiding them to where they need to be -- much like how it guides them to move their lightsabers to block a blaster bolt -- or guides them to a remote corner of a desert planet to take an annoying little kid (who will destroy the Jedi order and the Sith) as padawan.

Moreover, in Legends, a Jedi's lightsaber crystal is charged with their own particular Force signature via meditation. This is used to purify crystals and attune them to the owner, and may leave the saber somewhat more notable via Force perception.

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    It's not the other way around - the lightsabers are doing the attracting via the Force-attuned crystals inside of them. If I scruff up a balloon with static electricity, and hold it up to someone with long hair, you wouldn't say "actually the balloon isn't attracting anything!" - it totally is. – corsiKa Jan 7 '16 at 18:59
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    @corsiKa Those crystals don't exist in that manner, in canon, yet. Adding the fact that everything seems to attract Jedi when it's necessary... and this is my answer. – Slacklord the Terrible Jan 7 '16 at 19:29
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    @Axelrod - what do you mean re: the crystals? StarWars.com (care of Clone Wars and Rebels) has this to say about kyber crystals: "This crystal is attuned to the Force, and connected to a Jedi Knight on a deeply personal level. In this way, a lightsaber is an extension of a Jedi's Force awareness. Because Jedi let the Force guide their selection of the crystal...a lightsaber crystal is colorless until first attuned and connected to a Jedi." – NKCampbell Jan 7 '16 at 19:49
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    @Axelrod - that is an incorrect understanding of how canon now works under new management. New canon is defined by the Lucasfilm Story Group from Disney as any of the new books, comics, television (ie - Rebels) and existing films, novelizations, and Clone Wars series. – NKCampbell Jan 7 '16 at 21:05
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    @corsiKa: In your example, the balloon doesn't do the attracting. The static electricity (energy) is doing the attracting. That energy just happens to be attached to the balloon. I suspect it is the same for objects/locations/whatever. The objects are just objects. But residual static electricity, err, I mean force energy, is what draws other force sensitives in. – Ellesedil Jan 8 '16 at 19:38
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The new canon book Heir to the Jedi contradicts one of the underlying assumptions in your question (ie, that anyone can construct a lightsaber). It describes Luke disassembling a saber he has acquired (not his father's) and he notes:

aligning those crystals by hand would be impossible - I sensed that it had to be done with the Force, and only through the Force would I know whether it was aligned properly or not. They were wafer-thin slices of crystal, too, a beautiful clear amethyst, and might scratch or cloud with handling. Moving them precisely with the Force would ensure that they remained pristine.

In the new canon book Dark Disciple, Jedi Quinlan Vos has an ability called 'psychometry' which allows him to see and hear things through the Force when he touches an object that somebody else has held. This seems to indicate that objects have some sort of resonance with the Force.

In Heir to the Jedi, Luke goes on to say:

"the skill required to construct a lightsaber, or even put this one back together was a parsec or five beyond my current [Force] abilities"

Thus, to pair both ideas, an object like a lightsaber, which requires a great amount of Force sensitivity and skill to construct could practically be glowing with Force residue as it were. It seems to make some sense that both the Living Force as well as just general Force sensitivity would beckon particular people to them.

  • I'm not sure this answers the question directly (It clearly may be a POSSIBLE factor, but doesn't say outright in canon that this is the reason for attracting another Force-sensitive) – DVK-on-Ahch-To Jan 7 '16 at 18:41
  • more on the way...takes a while to find sources :) – NKCampbell Jan 7 '16 at 18:44
  • GL :) Looking forward to your answer – DVK-on-Ahch-To Jan 7 '16 at 18:48
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    Luke just thought about aligning crystals by hand other than force. What about aligning with a machine? – I Love You 3000 Jan 8 '16 at 3:14
  • BTW, the answer looks reasonable. Those lightsabers were created by Jedi who used lots of force on crystals and Force resonance thing takes care after that. :) – I Love You 3000 Jan 8 '16 at 3:17
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If we view it in the larger context of the anthropology of magic, Force-sensitives being attracted to these artifacts might be considered as an instance of contagious magic. Lightsabers are used almost exclusively by Force-sensitives, and the personality of these users tends to "rub off" on the objects. These mystical connections are later detected by other Force-sensitives.

To put it another way, the Force users aren't being attracted by the lightsaber per se; instead, they're being attracted by the magical traces of its previous owners.

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    Do you have any canon information to back this up? – Alfredo Hernández Jan 12 '16 at 23:12
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Because kyber crystals are “alive”

Each lightsaber contains a kyber crystal chosen by the Jedi who created it. New Disney canon information indicates that these crystals are, in essence, quasi-living entities.

He paused to magnify the view of one facet of the kyber. “The internal structure is unlike anything I’ve seen. It’s almost a bridge between organic and inorganic, as close to alive as a stone can be—which I suspect is why the Jedi were able to interact with kybers through the Force.”

Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel

In particular, crystals have a presence in the Force, as explained in Ahsoka. They call to those who are destined to use them to create a lightsaber:

The crystals grew.

Clear as ice and cold until they found the hands that waited for them, they added structure in an ordered way, one prism at a time. And while they grew, they waited.

From time to time, someone would arrive and call to them, like the harmony of a perfect song. Each crystal had a chosen bearer, and only that bearer would hear the music and see the glow. All others would pass by, seeing nothing but more ice.

Ahsoka

Crystals have been known to call to a Force-sensitive from within a lightsaber:

Kneeling beside her fallen foe, Ahsoka sifted through the wreckage of his lightsaber hilt. The crystals that had powered his lightsaber were no longer contained by metal, but their song had not dimmed. She held them in one hand, almost shaking as the familiarity of them coursed through her, while the other hand retrieved the half-finished hilts she carried with her.

Ahsoka

As such, the most likely explanation is that it is not the lightsaber attracting the Force-sensitive, but the kyber crystals within. Since the crystals resonate with the Force, Force users in general might be able to feel them (unless they’re hiding, as they seem to do on Ilum). And of course, the crystals can communicate general intentions through the Force (as was the case with Ezra).

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