ROSHtaFARian2.0

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  1. Not trying to beat a dead horse either, but I do feel that the WoB we do have still discounts this further theory about Vasher having knowledge of how to convert Stormlight into Breaths in the past. That WoB that I quoted earlier in the thread says 'He's tried, but he has not figured out how to awaken things with Stormlight.' As I mentioned previously, I feel what you're describing is quite possible, but it does seem to me that this quote is definitive in terms of Vasher's knowledge of how to do this. Brandon wasn't addressing Vasher's ability to do this currently, which would fit with the idea that he as the God King originally had this knowledge but then forgot it due to his use of Commands to do just that. He said 'he has not figured out how to awaken things' which - while your interpretation may vary - to me pretty clearly states that it's knowledge that has thus far eluded his reach. There was no stated timeline or context to the question when it was posed to Brandon, so there's nothing that grounded the question as being about Vasher and his knowledge at a specific point in the cosmere timeline. Thus Brandon's answer reads as a more general response covering the breadth of Vasher's own history....and according to that response, Vasher has tried to do this, but has not figured it out.
  2. I bolded that bit for emphasis, because I'm not entirely sure that's a given. I mean, yes, we know that Adonalsium is shattered, but we do know of at least some instances where his Investiture remains independent of the sixteen Shards that are made up of most of it. After all, many of the spren on Roshar are specifically said to predate the Shattering, and to be splinters of Adonalsium and his Investiture, right? So its not beyond the realm of possibility that there might remain some lingering, ambient Investiture outside of the Shards themselves, and that this could be used to power Yolish Lightweaving, at least if you're someone very knowledgeable about magic, like Hoid is. Actually, given that the only time we've seen Hoid use Lightweaving is on Roshar (correct me if I'm wrong, but his tricks on Sel and Nalthis are not confirmed to be Lightweaving and could have been done in other ways) - so perhaps its better to say that if indeed, Roshar is the only place we've seen Hoid use Lightweaving, that could possibly be because its one of the few places where Adonalsium's pre-Shattering Investiture is present enough for him to hack and power a pre-Shattering magic.
  3. To clarify, my belief is that Cultivation PREVIOUSLY invested in Ashyn, before she came to Roshar and Invested there. That whatever magic is on Ashyn currently is what remains of her Investiture there, filtered through the system she designed when she was focused on it. We still don't know exactly what the process is for a Shard de-vesting themselves from a world and going elsewhere, just that it is possible, albeit difficult, so my supposition is that inevitably some Investiture is left or unable to be fully reclaimed. And Oversleep, I'll have to get back to you on the exact WoB....I know its a recent one, it was only in the last couple of months or so and it might have been in the reddit thread? But essentially, he was responding to a question building on stuff he's said about magic arising from the interaction of a Shardworld and that Shard's Investiture, and he clarified that what he meant by that was never that the magic systems were accidental or unintentional, or that the Shards had no control over what form they took, but rather that certain Shardworlds had certain frameworks already in place (like the spren on Roshar) and the Shards had to design their magic systems in and around those existing frameworks.
  4. (I too am very curious to hear if there's any Cultivation/Ashyn connection, as I believe she's the most likely to have Invested there, given what we know of the magic system. Ever since that WoB where he said Shards do design their magic systems, they just have to work within certain parameters like fitting Surgebinding on Roshar to work with what Adonalsium had already established there, I've been pretty convinced. I can't imagine anyway a magic system designed to cultivate certain powers via different strains of bacteria/disease isn't born of Cultivation's Investiture).
  5. If anyone is looking for a more general question, not too cosmere-indepth to ask, I've been wondering if he would mind telling us where in the cosmere timeline we'll know of all sixteen Shards. Is it only in Dragonsteel or the space age (Era 4) Mistborn that we'll know all the major players, or will we know them or at least have heard of them all by the time those series start? (Basically, I just mean he's said he doesn't want to reveal too much too soon, and I'm just curious if he has a certain point on the cosmere publishing timeline predetermined for when all the Shards at least will be revealed).
  6. Its worth pointing out that we have to remember that at the end of the day, a large part of this is just semantics. All the Intents are deliberately broad and open to being interpreted in a number of different ways. Many of the themes or ideas being presented in this thread cover very similar ground, and it will all just come down to what specific word Brandon uses to focus these fairly broad concepts into a single, condensed Intent. With the established shards, some of his word choices are absolutely what we'd expect - Devotion, Honor, these absolutely make sense as divine attributes and were of no surprise to anyway. Others like Odium or Autonomy were a bit of a surprise, not because 'god's wrath' or 'free will' are surprising in and of themselves, but because those specific word choices weren't necessarily what we personally would've thought or predicted for those concepts. So I think there's actually more agreement than disagreement overall on a lot of these, when it comes to the underlying ideas....its word choice where most of us part ways.
  7. I think there's any number of possible connections Rayse could've had to Aona and Skai to get fully on board with the parents theory with so little basis, but I do agree that their deaths were probably personally motivated, and for whatever reason, he really hated the two of them. Could just as easily be a jilted lover thing though - lol maybe Aona had a thing for the bad boys but ultimately she chose Skai for a turbulent on-again off-again relationship instead of Rayse.
  8. I agree with you in theory, but I would caution (heh) against us limiting ourselves by trying to view Adonalsium as a god of any of the religions we're familiar with. I believe Brandon's expressed on multiple occasions that while he is influenced by various religions including his own, he did not set out to mimic any of them with his cosmere mythology. And yes, I long suspected Adonalsium was an homage to the Hebrew Adonai even before it was confirmed.....but that could just as easily be an homage or an Easter egg as an indication of how we're meant to view Adonalsium. The fact is, we really have no idea yet what kind of god Adonalsium was. He's referred to as the power of creation at various points, but does that mean he actually created everything in the cosmere pre-Shattering, or simply that he possessed the power of creation? He predated the Shards, but did anything predate him? Zeus and the Christian God are both gods, but of very different sorts and capabilities, and we really don't know what Adonalsium was like, either as an individual or as a force. And as such, while I do think that looking for divine attributes is a way to contemplate remaining shards....what those divine attributes are depends on how you view this particular divinity. I would agree with your points regarding Caution if it weren't for the existence of Ambition. I feel like some of the Shards, like Ambition, are not necessarily Intents we would inherently view as being aspects of a divine personality....and perhaps its simply that they're the words that best describe the Intent Brandon is trying to indicate. For instance, by your same logic regarding Caution.....an all powerful God is unlikely to be described as Ambitious, because the most common perception of ambition is 'a desire and determination to achieve success'. What need does an all powerful God have of a strong drive to succeed when his success is inevitable due to his omnipotence? However, ambition can also be defined as 'a strong desire to do or achieve something, typically requiring drive and hard work.' That I believe is where we find the divine attribute of Ambition within Adonalsium....Ambition is the Intent to accomplish, no matter the effort required. An adherence towards a goal and the will to actualize that goal and see it done. (Hence Cognitive but requiring a strong Physical influence). Similarly, my argument with Caution is that most commonly, the instinct is to link caution to fear....we think of it as something born of fear, which as you pointed out, is something an all powerful divinity is unlikely to have. However, caution is also defined as 'care taken to avoid danger or mistakes.' As such, like I suggested earlier, I would say that Caution could be viewed as another way to describe the attribute of divine patience, of knowing when NOT to act. Any creation inevitably requires at some point a step back to evaluate what one has created, view how it is turning out before deciding whether to proceed with the creation, start over, or just leave it alone. This is what I believe Caution is. Consider, we still don't know why Adonalsium was shattered. Obviously, there are many possible reasons. For all we know, the original Vessels viewed Adonalsium as an enemy or a threat. That seems more likely than people like Tanavast and Ati plotting to steal his power for the sake of their own empowerment. However, another possibility is that Yolen faced a terrible threat, and the original Vessels didn't think that Adonalsium was doing enough or anything to stop it. That they plotted to kill him and take his power for themselves so that they could act with the power of creation for the betterment of all. My point with this tangent is that there are many scenarios in which even an all powerful god CHOOSES not to act or to intervene, preferring to see how humanity handles it for themselves, like a parent standing back to let their child accomplish something for themselves. Its this Intent to not act, but rather to wait and see what happens, that I argue could be called the divine attribute of Caution. This is also my reasoning with Revolution (though I feel less strongly about this Shard's potentiality than I do Caution). The thing about Revolution is that our default perception of the word goes hand in hand with violence, the violent overthrow of a government or a regime, something which as you said, doesn't seem a likely attribute for a god who is himself the power of creation. However, once again, that is not all that Revolution means. It also describes a 'sudden, complete and marked change in something' or 'a radical change in society and the social structure'. Essentially, it is the Intent of Dramatic Change. It keeps the status quo from becoming stagnant. It is the divine attribute that would keep a creator god from being content with one singular creation that lasted unchanging for all eternity.....and instead would drive him to periodically shake things up so that new potential could emerge. Revolution could alternately be described as Reinvention, but I passed on that because I felt that one Shard was likely to be called either Inspiration or Invention, the Intent of creating, revising or originating. Revolution could also be described as Transformation, true, but I think its extremely unlikely that any of the remaining six Shards share a name with a subset of another Shard's magic system, like Surgebinding. With Transformation, Illumination and Progress being Surges, I highly doubt we'll end up with any Shards who share those same names...similar to how I don't think there's a Shard of Justice, given that one aspect of Honor's Intent and Investiture seems dedicated to Justice already. Edit: Regarding Harmony, I admit I have not worked him into my theory fully yet. However, currently I'm of the mindset that its probably a mistake to view Harmony as being simply the combination of Preservation and Ruin, rather than a wholly new thing created of two different Intents. What I mean is, Brandon's spoken about how Harmony is now its own, coherent Intent. Ruin and Preservation are both part of him, but he's not simply half Ruin and half Preservation, you can't split it apart that cleanly. So I don't think combining two strongly Physical Shards inherently makes one supercharged Physical Shard.....I think it creates something wholly new. We know that Adonalsium could have shattered along different lines, resulted in different Intents. The Spectrum of Intents I've created here is based on the INITIAL Shattering....we don't know yet why each Vessel got a specific Intent or how much the personality of the original Vessels influenced what Shard they got or perhaps even what Shards emerged from the Shattering. The confluence of events that resulted in sixteen Vessels each walking away with a different Intent is I think, a large part of why Adonalsium shattered into these specific sixteen Intents. Harmony however....is born of an entirely different confluence of events. Unrelated to the Shattering. So I wonder if the answer to this question is Harmony CAN'T be mapped on the Spectrum of Intents that resulted from the Shattering....that his creation puts him on an entirely new spectrum or in a wholly different order. Like I mean....if Sazed were at the Shattering instead of Ati and Leras, would Adonalsium have Shattered into fifteen Intents, one of them Harmony? I don't necessarily think so. Because I think that just like Adonalsium could have Shattered into different Intents, the combination of Ruin and Preservation could have resulted in a different Intent than Harmony if someone other than Sazed had been capable of taking them both up instead. I think Harmony is the result of Ruin & Preservation because those were the only Intents available to take up. If Sazed had been there at the Shattering, fifteen Vessels instead of sixteen....I think ALL the Intents would be different, not just the other fourteen Intents remaining the same and Harmony in place of Ruin and Preservation's original Shards. So my point is, Harmony isn't supposed to fit on the Spectrum of Intents, because Harmony literally didn't exist when the Shards originally split along these lines. I don't think any super-Shards that are formed by combining two or more of the remaining Shards can be retroactively shoehorned into a spot on this original spectrum....because the existence of these combined Shards or the Vessels of combined shards like Sazed were literally not a factor in whatever caused Adonalsium's initial split into sixteen Intents
  9. I wasn't trying to be pedantic, I just couldn't track down the specific WoB at the moment so I was affirming what others had said, about there having been an answer on whether or not Vasher could Awaken with Stormlight YET. Here it is: Interview: Jan 21st, 2015 Changing Hands, AZ ZenBossanova Can Vasher use Stormlight to Awaken things? Brandon Sanderson No, all it does is keep him alive. But he has tried and has not figured out how to awaken things. Edit: I do understand that your theory was about converting Stormlight into the Breaths that form the God King's treasure trove, and again, I do agree that is probably possible, but I believe that's still precluded by this WoB.....given that Vasher used the original treasure trove of Breaths to Awaken his Lifeless army, it seems to me that if he had somehow converted Stormlight into Breath to form that treasure trove, that would count as him having Awakened things with Stormlight.
  10. Again, nobody is saying that using Stormlight to Awaken isn't theoretically possible, but I believe Brandon was asked specifically if Vasher could Awaken things with Stormlight and Brandon said no, he hasn't figured out how to do that yet. He can keep himself alive with Stormlight, but that's it. So it seems extremely likely that Stormlight can potentially be used to hack Awakening and fuel it in place of Breaths, but nobody's figured out that particular hack yet. Meaning there's no way the original treasure trove of the God Kings came from the Scholars bringing back Stormlight from Roshar and converting it into usable Breaths Vasher later used to Awaken his Lifeless army.
  11. LOL my favorite topic. I'm in the camp that thinks that all sixteen Shards are divine attributes but do not directly fall into pairs....nor do I think that groupings are necessarily the best way to describe it either, because its rare that a personality (which is kinda what we're describing here, Adonalsium's divine personality shattered into sixteen specific attributes) can be cleanly sorted into groups. Instead I picture the Shards as being on a spectrum, that encompasses all three Realms. Much like most things in the cosmere touch or span all three Realms in one way or another, I think all sixteen Intents have some Spiritual, Cognitive and Physical aspects to each of them....but that each Intent is described better by one of the three than the other two. For instance, on one far end of the spectrum would be the more Physical Shards, like Preservation and Ruin. Both these Shards have cognitive and spiritual aspects to their Intent as well, but they're more strongly of the Physical than either of the other two Realms. Consider the Intent of Preservation.....its best defined or expressed through actions, through physicality. You can be spiritually devoted to the essence of what preservation means, being a person devoted to preserving life, society, any of that. You can be cognitively focused on the intellectual essence of what preservation means, whether saving one person is more important than letting one person die to save multiple people. But at the end of the day, the Intent of Preservation is most clearly expressed through action....the intent to preserve something means nothing without the actual action, your reasons for preserving something or why you choose to preserve one thing over another doesn't alter the actual end result of the actions you took. I believe this also plays into why some Shards and their magic systems seem more rooted in the Physical Realm than others. You initially access allomancy by physically acting to preserve. The focus, the fuel, pretty much all the fundamentals of the metallic arts are rooted in the Physical Realm. Now look at the other end of the spectrum, Shards that are more of the Spiritual than the others, even though they, like Preservation, do still touch on all three Realms and have aspects pertaining to each. Honor and Odium....both divine attributes like Preservation, but their essence is more of the spirit than of specific actions or physicality. With Honor's magic system, a person's spirit matters more than just their actions. Without special 'hacks' like wielding an Honorblade, you can't become a Surgebinder just by going through the motions.....performing specific actions doesn't cut it, its not just about the end result, its about the WHY of your actions. You only attract an honorspren by being honorable. Kaladin's reasons for doing certain things, the SPIRIT of how he wields his shardblade has an actual impact on Syl, their bond, and his ability to use magic that is of Honor - all in a way that just fundamentally isn't true of Preservation and how allomancy works and its relationship with mistings and mistborn. And then in the middle of the spectrum, you have Shards that are primarily Cognitive, they're the in between Intents, just as the Cognitive is kind of the 'middle' Realm in between the Physical and the Spiritual. Primarily cognitive Shards have aspects to them that are strongly of the Spiritual and the Physical Realms, but their Intents are most strongly defined and expressed via how the mind interprets the juxtaposition of spiritual essence and physical action - primarily cognitive Intents are ones where why you perform specific actions sometimes matters more, but sometimes the reverse is true. Its the eye of the beholder, or more accurately, the thought process of the Vessel or the magic user, that matters most. I'd say that the Cognitive Shards are like the 'gray area' Shards, like Devotion. With a Spiritual Shard like Honor or Odium....there is no real way to act against the SPIRIT of Honor or Odium. Your access to their magic system is contingent on being true to the essence of what is 'true Honor', something immutable, the personal views and belief system of the Surgebinder can only stray away from this to a minimal extent. I don't think you can really use Odium's Investiture for something good, because Odium is pure spiritual hate, there's not a whole lot of leeway for his Intent to be interpreted in a non-destructive fashion. But by contrast, I'd call Devotion and Dominion more strongly Cognitive Shards. We tend to view Aona and Devotion as a benevolent Shard, but Devotion is named what she is for a reason I think. While there are synonymous interpretations of devotion and love, the Intent of Devotion is not innately the same thing as the Intent of Love, which I'd call a Spiritual Intent. Devotion though, is more ideological. More intellectual. You can be devoted to negative pursuits just as easily as you can be devoted to positive ones. Unlike the spirit of divine hatred, which doesn't leave a lot of wiggle room to use that power for good (to be clear, I think there are plenty of ways to use say, anger for good or put that to productive use, but hate, not so much) - with devotion, the focus of your devotion matters as much as anything else. A person who is devoted to their country above all else is as much in tune with the Intent of Devotion as a person who is devoted to life in general....but the diehard patriot devoted to their country is going to be willing to kill or destroy in the name of their country without acting against Devotion's Intent, no matter that this puts them completely at odds with the person who is fiercely devoted to making sure all life is preserved regardless of nationality. And like with Preservation and Allomancy, I think Devotion and Dominion being Cognitive Shards has a lot to do with the nature of Sel's magic systems....and might well have to do with Odium being able to bottle their Investiture up in the Cognitive Realm after shattering them....something that perhaps was only possible because they were already more strongly concentrated in the Cognitive Realms than the other two Realms. So again, I don't think splitting the Shards into four groups of four or something similar is the way to go. I think mapping them as a spectrum might glean more insight. You have the Shards that are more strongly of Spirit at one end like Honor and Odium. Shards more strongly of Physical at the far end, like Ruin and Preservation. And I think most of the other Shards fall somewhere in between.....some in the middle, strongly of Cognitive more than anything else, but others that are a blend of Spirit and Cognitive and others that are on the further end of the Cognitive, mixing with the Physical. Personally, I'd look at the Spectrum of Intents (the ones we have so far) as looking like the following: ODIUM -- HONOR -- ENDOWMENT -- DEVOTION -- DOMINION -- AMBITION -- AUTONOMY -- CULTIVATION -- RUIN -- PRESERVATION At the farthest Spiritual end of the Spectrum, you have God's Divine Hatred, Odium, an almost purely Spiritual Intent that can easily applied to the cognitive or the physical, but can not truly be altered by either of those things. No matter what mental gymnastics you perform, no matter what actions you take with Odium's Investiture, Hatred is still Hatred. A little to the right of Odium is Honor because it also is a predominantly spiritual intent, there does seem to be True Honor, the distilled essence of what Honor actually is, and this seems to be a barometer that spren like Syl use in determining who appeals to them most, when it comes to forming bonds. However, I put Honor a little more towards the cognitive than Odium, because Honor is more easily diluted than Hatred is, the Cognitive and the personal views and ideologies of a magic user, an individual's view of what constitutes being honorable does have some sway. A little further towards Cognitive is Endowment, another Spiritual Intent because the primary focus of it is the essence of bestowing, of endowing. On the surface this sounds more like a Physical thing, a specific action, but I'd argue this isn't so, because of how Shai describes the spiritual essence of things in TES. If you look at how the magic works in Warbreaker, Endowment seems to be an immutable Intent, at least so far as Awakening goes. It doesn't matter what the individual's view of endowment or gift-giving is, it doesn't matter why they give up their Breath, if they're being coerced or tortured or something. All that matters is that they endow their Breath, that they give it away 'willingly' - even if external factors are being applied to force the person to give up their Breath. This implies to me that the Intent of Endowment is one of the most spiritually pure, in the sense that there's not a lot of room to deviate from its essence. HOWEVER, Endowment has a second part to its Intent....an endowment is meant to be used, by its very nature. Its giving something with the intent or aim of that gift being used to help the recipient of the gift. And this is why I put this Intent a little more towards the Cognitive, because how the gift of Breath is used resides more in the Cognitive realm (hence the Spiritual fuel of Awakening, but the Cognitive focus of commands). Devotion I've already described above...it has a stronger spiritual aspect than it does physical, but its largely dictated by the cognitive, what a person is devoted to, how they apply that devotion. But access to Devotion's Investiture seems to be a combination of the spiritual and the cognitive....all Elantrians are devoted to a specific thing or person or ideology, and then of course Elantrian magic is largely Cognitive in its mechanics. Dominion is a little further to the right, because its like Devotion in a lot of ways, but a little bit more towards the Physical act of exerting dominion. Devotion is a bit more spiritual, a bit more cognitive, a bit more focused on the ephemeral or the abstract.....Dominion is still very much a Cognitive ideology, but requires a bit more Physical action than Devotion, IMO. They're close though (part of this idea of the spectrum is that while not all Shards are paired, the ones that are will be found next to each other on the spectrum....the further away two Intents get on the spectrum, the less they have in common and thus the less accurately they can be argued to reflect each other). Next I would put Ambition. We don't know much about Ambition, next to nothing, actually....but Ambition to me strikes me as another gray area shard, an Intent that is very much influenced by the personal views or goals of the Vessel or anyone using Ambition's Investiture. It's a bit more Physical than Devotion or Dominion, because Ambition by its very nature demands action. If someone just sits around all day, it doesn't really matter how big they dream, they're not usually going to be regarded as very ambitious, because they're not DOING anything to make those dreams happen. We also know that while Ambition was actually shattered somewhere outside of Threnody's system, the weirdness around Threnody and Cognitive Shadows and Shadesmar there has to do with Odium wounding Ambition while in that system....and much like what happened on Sel, Ambition having a largely Cognitive nature could be tied to the fallout of its wounding having largely Cognitive effects on its surroundings. I would also suggest that if my theory on a spectrum of Intents and Ambition's place on it holds true, then if Ambition did at any point have its own magic system, it was probably Cognitive fueled and focused, like the magic on Sel. Next we have Autonomy, a little more towards the Physical. I think Autonomy is another primarily Cognitive Shard because there doesn't seem to be a distilled essence of what it means to be Autonomous in the cosmere....all Bavadin's actions (and Trell's, if related to Bavadin either as a pseudonym or a proxy of hers) seem to suggest entirely different approaches to gaining or maintaining autonomy. Sealing Taldain off from the rest of the cosmere to maintain its autonomy makes sense for that Intent....but meddling in the shaping of other cultures as Bavadin is said to do is not as in keeping with that Intent UNLESS that Intent has a lot of Cognitive leeway to make all kinds of different arguments for what it means to be autonomous and how to go about achieving it. So far, Bavadin and Autonomy seem to embody the argument of 'do the ends justify the means'....if total autonomy is only the END goal, then there's plenty of room in the meanwhile to interfere and meddle in pursuit of that end goal. In a lot of ways, the Intent of Autonomy is like the divine focus on free will....and as such, it makes sense that the Intent most like 'Free Will' would be extremely cognitive, given that the very nature of free will has spawned countless intellectual arguments throughout human history. I actually think that if my spectrum theory pans out, once all sixteen Shards are mapped out on it, we'd find Autonomy right smack in the center of it, maybe just leaning SLIGHTLY more to the Physical than the Spiritual given the seeming physical focus and nature of magic on Taldain thus far, and the fact that like action is required to preserve something in according to Preservation's Intent, action is required to act to free oneself from outside influences to act according to Autonomy's Intent. (But since external factors shackling one's autonomy are rarely as cut and dried as the physical threat one needs to act to to preserve something, there's a lot more Cognitive involved in an individual determining what is oppressing them and what they need to be free of). Next I would put Cultivation, who despite having a close relationship with Honor and Honor's magic system, is a very Physical oriented Intent and magic. Cultivation is the physical act of building upon things, developing them further. It still has a strong Cognitive element because there's no singular action taken to cultivate things or systems or ideas. If you look at Surgebinding as a combination of Honor and Cultivation, as we know it to be, then Honor's part of it is a distilled spiritual truth at the heart of the magic that causes different spren to seek out bonds with people who act with 'true' Honor and in pursuit of 'true Justice'. Honor is the basis of the oaths the Knights Radiant take to fully cement their magic. However, Cultivation's part of Surgebinding is the physical and cognitive act of growing those bonds, deepening them, learning new oaths, taking where the magic user started and adding more magic as that magic user works to become more in tune with Honor, to grow his or her personal service to the ideals of the Knights Radiant and Honor. It fits that Cultivation and Ruin would be next to each other on the spectrum, because Brandon said once that they would complement each other well, if Ruin weren't already paired opposite Preservation, which of course is on the other side of Ruin on the spectrum. And of course on the far Physical side of the spectrum thus are Ruin and Preservation...Preservation being the furthest right because it as an Intent is almost wholly of action free of Cognitive ideology or Spiritual purity. The act is all that matters with Preservation....action also largely defines Ruin, as he's at times been described as mindless destruction, but I put him ever so slightly more towards the Cognitive than Preservation because most of what we've seen of Ruin and his Investiture in the cosmere is conscious will shaping the entropy it causes or embodies. Allomancy, you act in self-preservation, you Snap. You drink a vial of metal flakes, you're fueled to use Allomancy. Ruin's magic requires a little more conscious intent in what you're stealing via hemalurgy, where you apply spikes, etc, and so while Ruin and Preservation are a true pairing of Intents and thus right next to each other on the spectrum, I weigh Ruin as being incrementally more of the Cognitive than Preservation is. Now all of this is pure theory at this point, but I do think if it pans out, a number of things about the cosmere would fall into place, and it would glean a little insight into the six remaining Shards. For instance....I don't think we'll find out six of the remaining Shards are more 'purely Spiritual' than say, Odium, or more Physical than Preservation....I think they anchor the spectrum pretty well and any remaining Intents are going to fall somewhere in between, even if there's another Spiritual Shard that's right next to Odium thanks to having a pure essence of what its Intent means. We know that the Shard that just wants to survive has an Intent that's only tangentially related to its desire to stay out of things happening elsewhere in the cosmere....that to me suggests that this is a Cognitive Shard somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, one whose Intent gives it a lot more flexibility and leeway in interpreting it than Odium or Ruin have, as an example. I think the cluster of four Shards or so in the very center of the Spectrum are going to end up being Shards whose Vessels are unaltered by their Intent far more than many others....because their Intent is so Cognitive based that their personal perception of what it means matters a lot more than with most Shards. This certainly seems to be true of Bavadin thus far, from everything Brandon's said about her. So, the Shard that just wants to survive seems to motivated more by personal choice or agenda than Intent just by Brandon's choice or wording (ie Brandon specifying that first, one Shard just wants to hide and survive but second, that this want is not specifically in service to their Intent)....it having more freedom to act based on personal wants suggests to me that it is has a great deal of leeway in how its Intent is interpreted....which again, suggests that its very near to Autonomy on the spectrum. That's why personally, I think that it has a possibility of pairing with Ambition, also close to that center of the spectrum, and that's why I think this Shard is Caution. If Ambition is the divine urge to act, then Caution is the divine urge to wait and let things develop, divine patience if you will. I do think we'll see at least one or two more Shards that fall strongly in the Cognitive/Physical area than anything we have so far. Something that I'd place more towards the Physical than Autonomy, but not as far as Cultivation. Like for instance, Invention or Inspiration. Cognitive inspired, but requiring Physical creation. I also think we'll see another Shard or two that's somewhere around Endowment, maybe between it and Devotion. A mostly Spiritual Shard but with a stronger Cognitive influence than Endowment has....Judgment, the Intent of Divine Condemnation perhaps. I do think there's a strong possibility for another pure Spiritual essence Shard, something like Enlightenment or Mercy, that relies on the idea of a 'true' essence of being merciful. I also like the possibility of another strongly physical shard, such as Revolution, the Intent of change through action. Caution, Invention, Revolution, Judgment, Enlightenment, Mercy - those are my favorite six picks for the last remaining Shards.
  12. I always figured it might also have something to do with the fact that there's a popular series of books by Simon R. Green called the Nightside series. Green is a long time client of Brandon's agent, Joshua Bilmes, and while White Sand was written before Brandon signed with his agent, he's mentioned that it took him a few years worth of trying before Joshua actually signed him. It wouldn't surprise me at all if Brandon stayed away from calling it the Nightside, because he'd done his homework on Bilmes' other clients and the first advice anyone in the industry gives a querying writer is avoid potential conflicts of interest with agents. (For instance, if you're a brand new writer just signed with an agent, and you and one of the agent's other long term clients both have manuscripts with specific plot points or place names or other sizable elements in common, you REALLY don't want your agent to have to make a choice between which of your manuscripts he pitches to editors first. Obviously this would not be an issue for Brandon now, lol, but at the time he was writing White Sand, I could see him having gone 'no, wait, there's already a series called the Nightside, let me call it Darkside instead').
  13. I've always considered the relatively recent beginning to the Returns as having to due with Endowment's gift for foresight. Given what we know from Lightsong's experiences and POV as a Returned, it feels like a pretty safe bet that Endowment is one of the Shards that's more capable than others when it comes to glimpsing the future.....which I always took to mean Endowment started Returning people five centuries ago in response to something she saw happening in the future. Its the butterfly flapping its wings somewhere creates a hurricane somewhere else nature of extreme variables. Her decision to start Returning people could very likely have had nothing to do with Nalthis itself, but might have been brought about by a shift in her foresight....a change elsewhere in the cosmere caused ripples in what she saw coming down the pike and suddenly she felt she needed a more proactive stance on Nalthis...even if it wasn't BECAUSE of anything on Nalthis. However what that catalyst for change was could have been any number of things in the cosmere. I mean, given that Warbreaker was only written to be a prequel to Vasher being in The Stormlight Archives and to show where he came from, for all we know, Edgli started Returning people because she saw Vasher and Nightblood needing to exist and be on Roshar in order to defeat Odium.
  14. Plus Bavadin does seem like the kind of individual who would be more than happy to let somebody else THINK they were in charge of a partnership with her, while she subtly guided their actions along a path that benefits her at minimal risk to herself, since Odium's hogging the spotlight.
  15. Well the way I was thinking about it, on Scadrial, Spinners and Soothers would be like the equivalent of card counters here in our world.....a lot of the security countermeasures are observational in nature, watching for cues or signs that someone is using Allomancy or Feruchemy to influence the outcome of games, or employing Seekers burning bronze to detect anyone using allomancy at the tables, etc. Whereas it would be more technological countermeasures employed to try and prevent the use of hemalurgy or medallions....like metal detectors that are somehow keyed to pick up on the presence of chromium spikes, and so forth.