In Episode 3, Yoda tells Anakin,

Rejoice for those around us who transform into the Force. Mourn them, do not. Miss them, do not. Attachment leads to jealousy, the shadow of greed, that is.

However, as Order 66 is executed, it shows Yoda most definitely mourning for the Jedi who are currently being slaughtered. Why doesn't Yoda hold true to his own advice and rejoice those who have transformed into the Force?

  • 29
    He's not necessarily mourning...it's more like shock and dismay.
    – Null
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 14:44
  • 37
    He's upset that some of them owed him credits from a Sabacc game.
    – phantom42
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 14:47
  • 13
    I don't think he mourned particular Jedi. He mourned the loss of the Order and what that means to the galaxy as a whole.
    – BBlake
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 15:48
  • 55
    @tilley31 presumably you mean "As I say do, do not as I do do". Or something.
    – AakashM
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 16:28
  • 15
    "Doodoo not as I doodoo. Fiber, you need." Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 19:31

7 Answers 7


Yoda is not mourning the death of the Jedi after order 66. He is physically responding to the disturbance in the force caused by the death of so many powerful Jedi. The same way Obi Wan reacted in Episode 4 when Alderaan was destroyed.

Edited to add:

The part where Yoda is actually attacked was left out of the novelization but later, when Obi Wan freaks out about the children, this dialog occurs:

"We took them from their homes." Obi-Wan fought to stay in his chair; the pain inside him demanded motion. It became wave after wave of tremors. "We promised their families—"

"Control yourself, you must; still Jedi, you are!"

"Yes, Master Yoda." That scab on his knuckle—focused on that, he could suppress the shaking. "Yes, we are Jedi. But what if we're the last?"

"If the last we are, unchanged our duty is." Yoda settled his chin onto hands folded over the head of his gimer stick. He looked every day of his nearly nine hundred years. "While one Jedi lives, survive the Order does. Resist the darkness with every breath, we must."

He lifted his head and the stick angled to poke Obi-Wan in the shin. "Especially the darkness in ourselves, young one. Of the dark side, despair is."

The simple truth of this called to him. Even despair is attachment: it is a grip clenched upon pain. Slowly, very slowly, Obi-Wan Kenobi remembered what it was to be a Jedi.

So in this scene from the novelization Yoda is clearly saying not to grieve for the dead Jedi. It is not in the movie and I am not clear if novelization is considered canon or not, but well... it's here.

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    Um. I'm glad this was upvoted to the stratosphere, but is there canon support for this (admittedly, plausible) guess? Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 19:15
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    here about mid way down the page, there is an image and the caption says: "Yoda feels the effects of Order 66 in the Force." I know it is not much to go on but "effects" is a link to "disturbance in the force" so... yeah. Also, Yoda reacts very quickly and decisively which is the opposite of a grief reaction. On the other hand, Obi Wan actually displays grief at Anakin turning to the dark side which is something I find interesting about his training (or lack of).
    – MikeV
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 19:34
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    Sorry, but Wookiepedia (like all wikias) is user generated content and not canon, unless it cites specific canon (like novelizations, screenplays, EU works, or interviews or creator statements). An image title someone typed up on Wikia does NOT a canon make. Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 19:37
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    @DVK Yeah... true. I will add above something I found in the novelization
    – MikeV
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 19:53
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    There are 66 upvotes on this answer! HAHAHAHA!!!!
    – OCDev
    Commented Nov 1, 2014 at 14:49

The difference is that a single Jedi dying is part of the cycle of Life. That Jedi unites with the Force, and that is not something to mourn. But the killing of all Jedi is not part of the cycle, and causes disequilibrium in the Force (and the galaxy).

Not any single one of the killed Jedi is to be mourned: they are all reuniting with the Force, but the fact that they all are being killed is to be mourned.

  • 3
    I'd interpret it similarly as his mourning the fall of the Jedi Order itself and the grave implications this brings for the Republic. In other words, he mourns for the living, not for the dead. Commented Nov 1, 2014 at 22:32
  • "Do not pity the dead, Harry, pity the living. Above all, pity those who live without love." - Dumbledore
    – RedCaio
    Commented Nov 26, 2015 at 4:17

A different take on Envite's answer (+1, by the way), is that Yoda isn't mourning for the ones that are dying, but rather, for the ones that are doing the killing.

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    Is there canon support for this (admittedly, plausible) guess? Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 19:38
  • 1
    Not to my knowledge, no. Commented Oct 31, 2014 at 13:19

Yoda also trains Luke even after insisting that he's too old to begin Jedi training. And advises him that he should never use the force as a weapon for attack, despite the Jedi having been a major combatative force in the Clone Wars.

Yoda in the prequels is learning that his own advice, that the advice of the Jedi council, does not always work. This is a repeated theme in the original trilogy - that the Jedi's own pride and refusal to change is what led to their downfall.


Contrary to popular desire, Yoda is not necessarily the most perfect being in the universe. If he was, perhaps he could instantaneously bring balance back to the force at the snap of his fingers. So then, if all these other great answers are somehow incorrect, another possibility is that he is in fact mourning the death of so many Jedi.

In other words, while he has intellectual assent to his own principle of not mourning Jedi when they die, and when only a few of them dies at a time he is able to emotionally handle it, he is not able to do so when nearly ALL of them die. It's analogous to when you see him easily lift small objects with the force, but is then visibly straining when you see him lift extremely massive objects. I don't think canon intends to make him out to be perfect. Just saying. :)


Perhaps it is the difference between someone dying a natural death, and someone being killed. One is the conclusion of a life, while the other is a life being cut short. He is mourning the tragedy of the Empire's genocide and the loss of all of the potential good contained within the Jedi Order, rather than just the loss of a friend.


It's simply a matter of that afterlife ideals such as "they're in a better place" are easy to speak and hard to accept. It's the same as how a preacher will tell a grieving widow that her husband is now sitting by the throne of God, and mean it sincerely, but will grieve himself when his parent dies.

  • 2
    I don't buy this one. It's Yoda, not a middle-aged human priest. He consistently walks his own talk. Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 16:20
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    your forgetting that its actually true, this isnt some magic answer, its a actual fact, they do become one with the force. most clearly seen at the end of the series. Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 18:07
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    @tryingToGetProgrammingStraight: :) Well, some would argue that the minister's speech is true as well, but we do get a much more tangible example here.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 18:16
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    @SeanDuggan the minister doesnt throw people across the room using his mind, also light-sabers. Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 18:24
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    It would be better if you could back it up with something we know about Yoda's character or history, rather than trying to directly compare him to a pastor - which, while they both follow an order and are considered a sort of 'monk', is where their similarities end. Yoda is a teacher, Yoda is a wise man on a powerful council, but Yoda isn't just following a religion - he's following something that he knows 100% to be true. If you think he's trying to save Anakin's feelings, that would be an argument you could back up, if you have evidence that Yoda would do such a thing.
    – Zibbobz
    Commented Oct 31, 2014 at 20:43

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