This is related to another question about why Han says, "That's now the Force works.".

If a Jedi knight comes across a device, weapon, or vehicle they never used before, does the Jedi need to learn how to use it?

Or does a Jedi just need the Force to guide his/her actions?

Can Force-sensitive people use the Force to gain knowledge and skills?

Would the Force allow Jedi to know what the user-manual / help-screen says in any language without knowing the language?

Please support your answer with quotes from canon sources.

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    Then they wouldn't need R2D2 to save them every time they mess up. Commented Jul 21, 2017 at 23:51

3 Answers 3


Unfortunately, there's probably nothing in Canon regarding to this. In Legends, if you may, there were some Force Powers introduced in Star Wars Role-Playing Games related to the question.

  • Technometry. This is the most obvious answer on behalf of the Force guiding one's actions. The power, in fact, allowed a Force-user to read and control technological devices through the Force.

  • Concentration. This power helped a Force-user to clear one's mind from all distracting thoughts and thereby increased the chance of succeeding in a task. If one had knowledge in the certain field of technology, the power practically improved it.

  • Electronic Manipulation. This Force power allowed a user to actually manipulate the electrical components of a computing device. Executing this power laid the user open to the dark side, however.

  • Regarding Electronic Manipulation, you see frequently in "The Clone Wars", several Jedi use the Force to open locks. Most of them are in the Jedi Temple, which at least one that I can recall was when Obi-Wan was going undercover and broke himself and 2 other prisoners out of a prison Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 12:12
  • Force sensitives can anticipate the future, including the results of their own actions. Hence I've always assumed that a Jedi confronted with a selection of buttons and levers would be able to tell which will have the desired effect by foreseeing the consequences of activating each one. Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 16:32

Luke: "You mean it controls your actions?" Obi-Wan: "Partially, but it also obeys your commands."

As far as learning new technology: we see in many novels that the Force might give a Jedi general guidance at a critical moment. Maybe they need to know what lever to pull in order to open a door, and they'll have a Force hunch to use a specific lever. However, it doesn't work like the Matrix; the Jedi can't instantly download complete instructions on how to operate a vehicle or machine they've never used before.

Lastly, something that is a hunch of mine rather than confirmed canon: Rey (from The Force Awakens) is shown to pick up new skills very quickly, and I suspect that she may have a high natural aptitude for learning that is supplemented by the Force. Perhaps the Force helps her mind make connections more quickly.


Question 1; Yes. A In New Hope, Obi Wan gave Luke lessons of how to use a lightsaber. In Force Awakens, Rey received images from Luke's lightsaber, but not instructions for usage. This is evident later when she fights Kylo. Also in Empire Strikes Back, Vader remarks that Luke learned to control his fear.

Question 2; No, they had to have some skills to begin with. In A New Hope, Luke shot down Tie fighters with the Millenium Falcons tail guns, with no evidence of help from the Force. In The Phantom Menace, Anakin knew how to fly his pod racer before he got help from the Force. Later he flew the fighter ship with natural skills.

Question 3; Yes. In Attack of the Clones, Anakin lacked the skills and experience to defeat Count Dooku, but by The Clone Wars, he defeated him without Obi Wan. Likewise with Luke from Empire to Return.

Question 4; In Empire, Luke did not know what the probe sent to Hoth was saying.

  • I wouldn't say "no help from the Force", rather that they had some sense of the Force but not with the skill and sensitivity of a trained Jedi. In The Phantom Shadow Anakin was able to win pod races despite being only human. Obe Wan told Shmee that this was because of his untutored use of the Force. Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 16:35

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