Ahsoka brought Star Wars’ World Between Worlds to live-action. That strange dimension first introduced on Star Wars Rebels is also intimately tied to another important realm in the franchise. The World Between Worlds has deep ties with Mortis, a mystical place where powerful Force users known as the Mortis gods once called home. Who were Star Wars’ Mortis gods, and why are they so important to Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka Tano, and the Force itself? And why did Baylan Skoll discover statues of them on an ancient planet in a distant galaxy? They might hold the key to understanding why Ahsoka is so important to the galaxy far, far away.
Where Is Mortis Located?
Mortis, spoken of only as legend for millennia, defies normal description. It’s technically located in uncharted space, but not really. Star Wars‘ Mortis is an ethereal, dream-like dimension unto itself that sits outside of normal space and time, just like the World Between Worlds.
Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Ahsoka Tano’s story on Mortis began when they answered an ancient Jedi distress signal in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. When they arrived at the origin of the call’s signal, a nearby Republic ship couldn’t locate them on radar. A giant black and red monolith resembling two pyramids stacked opposite each other then appeared. It pulled them into Mortis, which serves as a “conduit” of the entire Force. ( Some believe the Force itself came from Mortis.) During the day, the world appeared as a paradise. At night everything died as it transformed into a dark nightmare.
Mortis is ultimately better understood not by what it is like but by those who once ruled there.
Who Are Star Wars’ Mortis Gods from The Clone Wars?
Some call us Force-wielders
Known as “The Ones” in Star Wars‘ world, the Mortis gods were a family of three immensely powerful Force-wielders. The Clone Wars indicated The Ones were at least 2,000 years old, but their real age was likely at least 25,000. Jedi images of the Mortis gods date that far back, to the Order’s founding.
Together the three Mortis gods represented the living embodiment of the Force.
Who Was Mortis’ The Father?
The wise, immensely powerful Father loved both of his children equally. His Daughter represented the light side of the Force, while his Son represented the dark side. The Father represented balance between both. His need to control his kids brought them all to Mortis. There he was able to keep their outsized power in check, protecting the galaxy.
The Father’s children also gained their power and immortality through his own.
Who Was Mortis’ The Daughter?
The kindly Daughter could transform into a massive griffin. She did so when kidnapping Obi-Wan as part of her Father’s test of Anakin. (The Son kidnapped Ahsoka.)
The Daughter, a great Force-using warrior, tried to stop her equally powerful dark side-embracing sibling from killing their Father. She died when her brother accidentally stabbed her while attacking their dad.
Who Was Mortis’ The Son?
The Son, who could change into a giant flying gargoyle, had begun to further embrace the dark side even more. That led him to try and escape Mortis and rule the galaxy. It also led him to trick others by disguising himself as their loved ones. The Son even possessed and then killed Ahsoka Tano as part of his efforts to flee Mortis. (We’ll get to how she survived later.)
His attempt to kill his Father resulted in the Son accidentally killing his sister, whom he loved. Her death left the Son heartbroken.
The Son lost his power and then his life after the Father killed himself so he could stop his child from bringing darkness to the whole galaxy. As the Son screamed out in pain, Anakin stabbed him with a lightsaber, killing the last Mortis god.
The Mortis Gods Star Wars History on The Clone Wars and Rebels
The Mortis gods only appeared as living creatures during a three-episode arc on Star Wars: The Clone Wars. That didn’t stop them from making their presence felt on Star Wars Rebels.
What Happened With the Mortis Gods on The Clone Wars?
In Star Wars: The Clone Wars, The Father lured Anakin Skywalker to Mortis after hearing rumors Anakin was the Chosen One. The Father was dying and needed someone to take his place and keep his children in check. Anakin passed the Father’s test, proving he could take up his mantle on Mortis so he could keep the Force in balance. Anakin refused, setting the Mortis gods’ deaths in motion.
During the Mortis arc, the Father made Anakin forget the vision the Son had shown the Jedi. The Son had revealed the possible future where Anakin became Darth Vader, a path Anakin ultimately followed. But the three Jedi remembered everything else that happened to them on Mortis.
What Happened With the Mortis Gods on Star Wars Rebels?
In Star Wars Rebels, Ezra Bridger traveled to the World Between Worlds via a portal created by a painting of the Mortis gods. The ancient mural at the Jedi Temple on Lothal, a planet with a strong connection to the Force, showed the three Mortis gods along with Star Wars’ Loth-wolves. The painting began to light up and move when Ezra touched the Daughter’s open hand and connected with the Force. The painting’s Loth-wolves then began moving along the rock wall, eventually creating a magical doorway for Ezra—and Ezra alone—to travel through.
He wasn’t alone when he got there.
Ahsoka Tano’s Connection to Mortis and the World Between Worlds
The Daughter’s last act was to help save Ahsoka Tano’s life. After her brother’s fatal blow, the Father and Daughter let Anakin transfer the Daughter’s last remaining life force into the dead Ahsoka. It worked, as Anakin resurrected his Padawan with the help of the Mortis god.
The metaphorical connections between Anakin (dark side) and Ahsoka (light side) and the Son and Daughter were obvious. They then became far more tangible on Star Wars Rebels.
How Does Morai Bind Ahsoka Tano and The Daughter From Mortis?
Ahsoka had a companion in Star Wars Rebels, the convor named Morai. The little green-feathered sidekick seemed to watch over the Jedi even before it became clear Morai was not a normal animal.
Morai— whose name comes from the three Fates of Greek mythology—appeared in ancient images alongside the Daughter, including the painting on Lothal. She was either the Daughter’s servant or a manifestation of the Mortis god. Either way, Morai represents the light side of the Force and the Daughter.
She was also there when Ezra Bridger arrived in the World Between Worlds.
How the Mortis Gods Connect to the World Between Worlds and Ahsoka
Inside the World Between Worlds, Ezra found Morai resting atop a portal. That doorway then opened to show the moment years prior when Ezra wrongly believed Darth Vader had killed Ahsoka Tano. Viewers knew she’d survived, but not how. She lived because Ezra pulled Ahsoka into the World Between Worlds right before Vader’s deadly blow.
When the two left the dimension—itself a conduit of the Force, like Mortis—Morai rejoined Ahsoka. The bird then immediately led Ahsoka back into the World Between Worlds. (The specifics of that journey, only shown via canonical Topps Trading Cards Dave Filoni designed, remain a mystery.)
Why did Morai join Ahsoka in the first place? Why did the bird then usher Ahsoka in and out of the World Between Worlds? Did Ahsoka take the Daughter’s place when Anakin transferred the Mortis god’s essence into his Padawan? Is that why Ahsoka didn’t die when she fell from that henge in Seatos? Is she a kind of Star Wars Force god like the Mortis gods were? Does she at least have some god-like powers? An unbreakable connection with the World Between Worlds and the Force so strong it saved her?
Those were all of the questions we had before Ahsoka‘s season one finale, which raised even more about the Mortis gods’s role in both Star Wars‘ past and future.
What Did Ahsoka‘s Season One Finale Reveal About the Mortis Gods and Baylan Skoll’s Quest?
Baylan Skoll is a former Jedi who hates both the Jedi and Sith. He’s now a Force-user who straddles the line between light and dark. He is also searching for “the beginning” on Peridea in a quest to find a power far greater than anything Thrawn seeks.
What Are the Statues Baylan Skoll Encounters in Ahsoka‘s Season One Finale?
Ahsoka‘s finale revealed that his quest and that strange Force-sensitive planet are both connected to the Mortis gods. Peridea, an ancient world in a distant galaxy with a mysterious past that predates the Jedi Order’s creation, is home to giant statues of the Father, the Son, and the Daughter.
What Do These Peridea Statues in Ahsoka Tell Us About Star Wars‘ Mortis Gods
Is Peridea where the Mortis gods came from? Did they help create the Jedi? Did the Mortis gods cross the universe via the World Between Worlds? How are the Mortis gods connected to Peridea and, therefore, the Force? Why is the statue of the Daughter missing its head when the other two gods remain intact on Ahsoka? Does that have anything to do with why Morai appeared before Ahsoka Tano there? And what is the Father’s statue on Peridea pointing to? Is it guiding Baylan Skoll to the beginning he seeks?
Ahsoka revealed more about the galaxy far, far away’s origins than we ever knew. It showed it began in a galaxy far, far away from itself. The series also revealed the Mortis gods own history is even more important than we knew. But Ahsoka also raised even more questions about those powerful figures and their intimate connections with the Force Mortis, the World Between Worlds, Peridea, and Ahsoka Tano.
What does it all mean? We don’t know yet. But we do know she said she’s right where she’s supposed to be. And where she is is on a world in need of a Daughter who represents the light every galaxy needs.
Originally published on September 11, 2023.