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Yoda_Empire_Strikes_Back

Yoda had a big reason for choosing Dagobah for his self-imposed exile

This backwards talking Jedi Master spent more than 20 years of exile on the overgrown swamp planet. But why did Yoda choose Dagobah?
This article is over 2 years old and may contain outdated information

Even though years have passed since the original Star Wars trilogy was released, many of the films’ aspects are still a topic of debate for fans of the franchise. Of all, one of the primary queries that crop up from time to time is why Yoda, the renowned Jedi master, chose the planet of Dagobah for his self-imposed isolation?

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Master Yoda, one of the most powerful Jedi of all time, narrowly escaped Order 66 with his life. After The Great Jedi Purge, many knights of the Republic were scattered hopelessly across the galaxy. Hiding from prying eyes and Inquisitors, the Force users that managed to survive Palpatine’s rise to power were constantly hunted and killed by the newly installed Empire.

Yoda believed he had failed to foresee the dark hand of the Sith and felt directly responsible for the death of his friends. Choosing to go into exile, he journeyed to the Outer Rim and landed on the remote planet of Dagobah. But why did he choose the murky swamp planet in the first place?

Dagobah wasn’t stumbled upon by chance, and Yoda’s decision to remain there wasn’t simply an act to punish himself. It was part of his larger plan — survival. Although he felt guilty for the fall of the Jedi and sought seclusion to avoid hurting anyone else, Yoda knew that Dagobah could do what almost no other hideaway could — mask his presence. 

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Force users are able to feel each other through the Force, and if an individual is especially powerful they are much easier to locate due to their heightened connection. Yoda could have been quickly found by Palpatine, Vader, or the Inquisitors because of his strength. That’s where the swamp comes in. 

Dagobah is what’s known as a Force nexus, which is an area or planet that is unusually strong in the Force. In Star Wars, there are two types of nexus; light and dark. Because Yoda was so strong in the light side, he had to travel to a place of supreme evil to hide in the darkness. That way if anyone came looking for him, Yoda’s location wouldn’t be revealed.

The Force nexus on Dagobah is actually a place Star Wars fans are all too familiar with. It’s the spooky cave that Yoda sends Luke into during his training in The Empire Strikes Back. What Luke finds changed the course of his life, and led to one of the most shocking reveals in cinematic history. 

It stands to reason that Yoda, being as wise as he was, made the correct choice in retreating to Dagobah. During his 20 years of isolation, the Jedi Master learned to accept his failures, come to terms with the past, and rise above circumstance — something we all could take note of. Even in exile, Yoda still taught invaluable lessons, always being the typical Jedi Master everyone knew him as. 


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Parker Whitmore
Parker is a writer, filmmaker, and storyteller who really hates talking about himself in the third-person. Couldn't he just say something like... Hi, I'm Parker! I write articles about some of the stuff you like. Take a look — or don't, I'm not the boss of you.