Spoiler Warning: There are spoilers for Episode Three of Obi-Wan Kenobi in this post
WHEN LEIA ASKS BEN IF HE IS HER FATHER?!
She is so strong in The Force and we see it when she reads people’s emotions and intentions. But also in this moment? She understands that Ben is speaking truth about seeing her mom in her, she can sense the truth of that statement. And she doesn’t quite know what the truth is so she makes that guess and asks if Ben is her father.
AND, Ben is the one to introduce Leia to The Force for the first time. She is very interested in how The Force works. Ben is the one to explain it to her. He equates The Force to a feelings – it is something that feels like light and safety. So, Ben is the first person to give meaning to Leia’s feelings – maybe she won’t recognize it as The Force in herself quite yet. But she is given tools to understand herself and her feelings. And, on a basic level, I think that she feels safety with Obi-wan, which also prompts her to ask if he is her father.
Ben: Have you ever been afraid of the dark? How does it feel when you turn on the light?
Leia: I feel safe.
Ben: Yes, it feels like that.
But also, we know that in the Original Trilogy Leia speaks to Luke about remembering her mother through feelings and short images. Besides her mother, Obi-wan was the only other human in the room and what if she is sensing some familiar feelings as they are having that emotionally raw conversation about parents. During this conversation with Leia, it is possible that Ben is remembering Leia’s birth. Well, what if in this moment with Ben, Leia is –through The Force– feeling the feelings Ben associates with her birth as well — since he was there when she was born. So, through The Force Leia feels Ben’s memories too and is like, wait but these feelings are familiar and they feel parental. She isn’t quite right in connecting those feelings, but she isn’t quite wrong either. Because they are parental feelings. Ben held her at her birth, he loved her at her birth, he was a parent for her at her birth, and she picks up on that mere hours after learning about the connection between feelings and The Force.
And to connect it all back to that original quote from Return of the Jedi, what if, at some point in the next few episodes, Leia begins to lean into those feelings and search them more and that is what prompts images of her mother to appear to her. Maybe it even happens through a dream. Small images that flash through her mind along with those parental feelings initially kickstarted through that conversation with Ben. It would finally make that quote make sense in a canonically possible way.
And finally, since Ben doesn’t train Luke until he’s older, but is the one to introduce Leia to The Force as a child, it further supports why Luke then says he has no memory of his mother. It’s because Ben helped Leia know her biological mother through The Force – even if maybe neither of them realize (Ben bc he’s just talking to a kid, Leia bc she is just feeling feelings and seeing images in a dream), and Luke doesn’t get that kind of training, conversation, or parental connection to Ben at all.