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Dark Side symbol

Ancient symbol of the dark side of the Force

"The dark side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be unnatural."
―Sheev Palpatine[src]

The dark side of the Force, also known as the Bogan,[1] or simply as Bad force,[2] was an aspect of the Force.[3] Individuals who used the dark side drew their power from more intense, raw and darker emotions such as fear, anger, hatred,[4] passion, [5] and aggression.[6] The Sith were major practitioners of the dark side, and were the mortal enemies of the Jedi Order, who followed the light side of the Force.[4] There were others such as the Inquisitorius, who, though not Sith, could draw upon the power of the dark side.[7]

Darth Sidious believed that the source of his dark side power was the universe beyond the edges of the known galaxy.[8]

Although Jedi were taught to follow the light side of the Force, the dark side was considered seductive, and a Jedi had to maintain vigilance in order to avoid falling to the dark side.[6] Anakin Skywalker was a powerful Jedi who, partly through the machinations of the Sith Lord Sidious, fell from the light side and began practicing the dark side, becoming the famous Sith Lord known as Darth Vader.[5] Even a Jedi raised in the traditions of the Jedi Order from birth could quickly be corrupted by the lure of the dark side in certain situations. Despite this, while the Jedi often described the dark side as a "quick and easy path," drawing upon its power did not necessarily come with ease or without cost to those who possessed strong compassion and were not used to drawing upon feelings such as hatred.[9]

Use of the dark side of the Force granted certain abilities that were generally closed to a user of the light side, such as possession,[10][11] the ability to manipulate Force visions[12] and even, according to legend, to manipulate midi-chlorians to create life or keep someone from dying.[5] The dark-side historian and Sith cultist Yupe Tashu told Wedge Antilles on Akiva that some Sith Lords were able to siphon the Force from their captives in order to extend their own lives for centuries beyond their natural expiration.[8]

The power of the dark side was penetrating and pernicious. The Jedi Temple was built on top of an ancient Sith shrine and, unbeknownst to the Jedi, the power of the dark side rippled upwards through the Temple from the shrine, slowly weakening the Jedi over a millennium.[13]

The dark side of the Force was considered highly corrupting. The Jedi Grand Master Yoda, for example, believed that "Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny,"[6] a view he espoused despite having personally witnessed the redemption of at least two individuals who were at one time deeply steeped in the dark side.[9] Anakin Skywalker also proved an exception, as he overcame his past actions to save his son, Luke, and kill the Sith Lord Darth Sidious.[14] While Yoda said that the dark side of the Force is not stronger than the light side of the Force, he said that it was merely "quicker, easier, more seductive".

Additionally, use of the dark side by somebody with generally good intentions in a moment of weakness could leave that individual feeling weak and shivery, with a general feeling of wrongness. This was once experienced by Ezra Bridger when he once unconsciously drew upon the power of the dark side to summon a massive fyrnock to attack the Grand Inquisitor.[15]

If the presence of the dark side was significantly powerful, nearby Force-sensitives often feel the sensation of cold, such as when Darth Vader was near Ezra Bridger and Kanan Jarrus, or when Luke sensed the dark side emanating from the Cave of Evil on Dagobah.[6][16]


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