In the Star Wars universe, lightsabers are the chosen weapons of both the Jedi Knights, who defend the galaxy, and the Sith, who try to oppose them. At the heart of these iconic weapons lies mystical gems known as kyber crystals or lightsaber crystals. These force-imbued crystals were typically found growing on Force-rich planets (Ilum, Jedha, Lothal) around the galaxy, and they served as an energy source for lightsabers.
Apart from being an energy source for lightsabers, lightsaber (kyber) crystals hold a lot of significance in the Star Wars universe, and in this article, we shall be delving into their role in lightsaber construction and their symbolism.
The Role of Lightsaber Crystals in Lightsaber Construction
In the Star Wars universe, every Jedi youngling has to go through a rite of passage known as ‘The Gathering‘. This gathering ritual involves a group of Jedi younglings traveling to Force-rich planets like Ilum to obtain kyber crystals for their lightsabers. This journey is a crucial aspect of lightsaber construction. Jedi Knights and Force-sensitive individuals can also seek out kyber crystals for the construction of their lightsabers.
Upon finding a lightsaber crystal, a Jedi or Force-user will have to first attune the crystal with the Force in order to use it. This process of attunement creates a strong spiritual bond between the individual and the crystal. It also allows the crystal to resonate with the Force. While attuning with the crystal, the Force-user will also imbue the crystal with their energy, and this often leads to the crystal gaining colour.
Kyber crystals are typically colourless in their natural state, but once they have been attuned to the Force, they take on a colour that reflects their owner’s essence and relationship with the Force. It is the colour of a kyber crystal that subsequently determines the colour of a lightsaber’s blade.
Unlike the Jedi and Light Side users, the Sith can not bond with kyber crystals, so they have to force a connection by bleeding the crystals. This bleeding process involves a Sith or Dark Side user psychically pouring their negative emotions into a kyber crystal until it turns red. Although the Sith can also obtain kyber crystals from Force-rich planets, they prefer to bleed the Kyber crystals gotten from fallen Jedi.
The Symbolism of Lightsaber Crystals
In the Star Wars universe, Kyber crystals hold great meaning for both the Jedi and the Sith.
For the Jedi, they are a symbol of knowledge, peace, and force connection. They also reflect a Jedi’s relationship with the light side of the Force, their commitment to keeping the peace, and their willingness to protect the galaxy from dark side forces.
For the Sith, kyber crystals are mostly used as a means to draw more power from the Dark Side to fuel power-hungry ambitions. To reflect their dark intentions, the Sith often had to corrupt and bleed these crystals.
As mentioned earlier, lightsaber crystals are what determines the colour of a lightsaber’s blade, and depending on the owner’s personality and connection with the Force, these colours could be blue or green (the most common Jedi lightsaber colours), red (Sith lightsabers) or rare colours like yellow, purple, orange and white. Kylo Ren was a Dark Side user who had a lot of internal conflicts, and this was reflected in the red and unstable nature of the Kylo Ren lightsaber.
It is important to note that lightsaber (kyber) crystals also had a lot of mystical properties, the most notable one being their ability to amplify their owner’s connection to the Force. A force-user can also use their energy to augment their skills and focus.
Kyber crystals or lightsaber crystals are a powerful and valuable resource in the Star Wars universe. They provide a power source for lightsabers, and their connection to the Force makes them highly sought after by both the Jedi and the Sith.