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Found 32 results

  1. My theory is that Ambition is the most dangerous shard and will eventually reform. But lets first examine what we know about Ambition and Shards in general. Shard come from the shattering of Adonalsium, which seems to have been a last ditch effort. The people who did it seemed really scared and that is why they did such an extreme thing as breaking a god. We know that a vessel is slowly taken over by the intent of its shard. What we know about Ambition: She was killed by Odium shortly after the Shattering of Adonalsium and atleast some shards think, that it is for the better. Now she is splintered. Ambition is defined as "an earnest desire for some type of achievement or distinction, as power, honor, fame, or wealth, and the willingness to strive for its attainment" (dictionary). So where can you go when you are already a shard of a god and extremely powerful. The only logical thing is that Ambition would at some point have tried to accumulate all the shards power and to recreate the power of Adonalsium. ( And then perhaps try to take on his opposing force, which could have catastrophic consequences. ) Which the vessels are strictly opposed too. Not only did the shatter Adonalsium in the first place, they even made a pact to settle different planets. I know that merging shards powers would result in a changed intent, but that should take an equally long time as the take over of the original intent. What makes her more dangerous than Odium is, that Rayse doesnt want to accumulate the other shards powers, he just wants to destroy them. But Ambition is splintered. And here the second letter from Oathbringer comes into play. Im just going to quote it here for ease. Cephandrius, bearer of the First Gem, You must know better than to approach us by relying upon presumption of past relationship. You have spoken to one who cannot respond. We, instead, will take your communication to us – though we know not how you located us upon this world. We are indeed intrigued, for we thought it well hidden. Insignificant among our many realms. As the waves of the sea must continue to surge, so must our will continue resolute. Alone. Did you expect anything else from us? We need not suffer the interference of another. Rayse is contained, and we care not for his prison. Indeed, we admire his initiative. Perhaps if you had approached the correct one of us with your plea, it would have found favorable audience. But we stand in the sea, pleased with our domains. Leave us alone. We also instruct that you should not return to Obrodai. We have claimed that world, and a new avatar of our being is beginning to manifest there. She is young yet, and--as a precaution--she has been instilled with an intense and overpowering dislike of you. This is all we will say at this time. If you wish more, seek these waters in person and overcome the tests we have created. Only in this will you earn our respect. So it is written by somethingwith multiple pieces ( one who cannot responed, we will take your communication to us ). The begings admire Rayses initiative, which sounds very similar to Ambition and they say, that Hoid can earn their respect through overcoming tests, which also sounds like something ambitious to undertake. Obvoiusly I believe that the splinters of Ambition are the authors of this letter. But the most interesting parts are: "A new avatar of our being is beginning to manifest" "As the waves of the seas must continue to surge, so must our will continue resolute. Alone." I think the splinters of Ambition are trying to reform the shard of Ambition with this new avatar on Obrodai and then become the only being (will) in existence. The last part is a bit out there, but I thought i would mention it. So how could Ambition reform from her splinters ( The both the original vessel of Ambition and the new avatar are female. )? I think it will probably be a mini version of Odiums fight against the over shards with one splinter of Ambition fighting the other, merging with it, until only one remains, which will merge with the avatar and become the new Shard of Ambition. I would go so far as predicting, that Ambition 2.0 will not need to overcome the vessels psyche as they specifically created her for that purpose and seem to be able to influence her. ( dislike of Hoid ) TL,DR Ambition will reform on Obrodai and cause major trouble in the cosmere. What do you think about this theory? Am I onto something or is this complete garbage?
  2. Because all of the Shards of Adonalsium have their own predesignated Intents, I have come to wonder if Adonalsium itself had an Intent of its own before it was shattered. And I believe that Intent, and therefore the name we can ascribe to the power of Adonalsium, is Unity. First of all, this stems from the nature of the religions on Sel, as shown in Elantris. The two dominant religions on Opelon in conflict with one another are Shu-Korath and Shu-Dereth. The way I see it, Shu-Korath relates closely to the Intent of the Shard of Devotion, and Shu-Dereth relates closely to the Intent of Shard of Dominion. Both were killed and Splintered early on Sel, but they still have a great influence on Sel, not just in the form of seons and skaze, but in the form of religious precepts. And what is it the Korathi and the Derethi are both striving for in the world? Unity. They seek to unite all people, but in different ways. The Korathi preach love, the Derethi preach control. Unity through Devotion. Unity through Dominion. Of course, this could be seen as the effect of people’s interpretations of Intent rather than Shards themselves, so who knows. My second point is a rather weaker one, relating to Scadrial and its Shards. When Ruin and Preservation are combined into one, they for the dual Shard of Harmony. It is a perfect Unity of the two most opposing Intents. If anything, I consider unity and harmony to be synonymous one with another (and so does the thesaurus ). Third of all is in the Stormlight Archive, Honor repeats the same command to Dalinar in each of his visions – Unite them. It almost even seemed a bit out of character to me that the dead Shard seemed to care more about unity on Roshar rather than the honor of mankind. We don’t even know entirely what he means by that phrase, but it is his ever-present plea. Unite them. Whatever it means, Honor desires unity of some sort. And in Oathbringer, it reaches a culmination that seemed to be set up from the start of the series. The previous points could be considered speculation, but this is a real example in the books that works as evidence. The linchpin for this theory is the climactic scene in Oathbringer in which Dalinar swears his third Ideal, opens Honor’s perpendicularity, and is referred to as having Ascended. When Venli asks him who he is, he responds, “I am Unity” before uniting the three Realms. This seems to go along with what Honor’s visions have been saying to him. The interesting part is this: it’s right after he says those words and brings the Realms together that Odium steps back in fear and rage, saying, “No, we killed you! WE KILLED YOU!” Now, why would he say that in direct response to Dalinar calling himself Unity? At around that same time, Dalinar remarks to himself that Odium suddenly seems small compared to him. It seems to me that in that moment, Dalinar somehow took up a bit of Adonalsium when he briefly Ascended and somehow knew it, which was why he referred to himself with the title of “Unity”. There are even moments in the series before and after that scene where he describes feeling a warmth and a light that comes from somewhere beyond, something different from Honor. It makes me think that the voice telling him to “unite them” may not even be Honor’s. And if it is, it seems to bear the touch of Adonalsium. On Roshar, Dalinar is meant to “unite them” to save humankind. On Sel, the religions based off the two Shardic Intents are looking for unity through devotion and dominion. On Scadrial, Sazed has become the unified form of two Shards as Harmony. As shown by these three series, unity seems to be a big driving force in the cosmere, one closely related to some of the Shards and perhaps something beyond even them. Why? Because I think Unity was the Intent of Adonalsium, and that it has left its touch on the Shards even after all the time it was Shattered. So my next big question is – if the ultimate power of the cosmere was the godly embodiment of unification, then why would people want to divide it? But hey, that's just a theory. A Cosmere Theory! Thoughts on this theory as a whole? TL;DR: Adonalsium had the Intent of Unity, with possible evidence given in Elantris, Mistborn and the Stormlight Archive.
  3. I'm not sure if anyone has thought about or come up with something like this already, but from the discussion I read through no one had a very feasible name created for the “survival shard.” Brandon has stated that it just wants to hide and survive (the probable intent of the shard) and that it would be partnered with devotion to do something good. With that in mind, I was thinking of something along the lines of either salvation or protection. Both of these things I feel could partner with devotion nicely to form something similar to defense. I just wanted to rekindle this conversation and try to have a look at it from a different point of view. Thanks!
  4. Happy New Year, everyone! Best wishes for peace, health, and prosperity! @Calderis’ excellent post concludes “the names of the Shards that we know is not the pure intent of the Shards themselves, but the interpretation of that core concept by their Vessel.” I agree with his insight. This post tries to describe those “pure intents” (what I call Mandates) and suggests Mandates together may form a specific pattern. Theory IMO, Mandates are each Shard’s thematic mechanic, the way mortals get magic from their Shard: “The means of getting powers…are related to the Shard, but not the powers themselves”; and “The 'role' of the Shard has to do with the WAY the magic is obtained, not what it can do.” As thematic mechanics, “pure” Mandates seem to associate with different stages of life – birth, growth, plateau, decline, and death. I think Mandates together may form a “Wheel of Life” (really), but I’m unsure what that means, if anything. Maybe it’s Brandon’s paean to Jordan? Brandon says Adonalsium could have Shattered differently. At minimum, the allocation of Adonalsium’s power by life stage seems to ensure the Shards don’t overlap. As Evi says, “We are all different aspects of the One.” (OB, Chapter 36, Kindle p. 372.) Mandates divide the One’s magical aspects into different gods. Each Shard’s Mandate I list the Mandates – how IMO a Shard gives its magic to mortals – in order of placement on the Wheel of Life. Grants Life (Endowment) Conception/Birth: Endowment’s Mandate gives life (Breaths). Breaths attach to new souls. Each later-acquired Breath gives more life to souls (the Heightenings). Divine Breath gives life to souls by healing them. Awakening’s Breath transfer gives objects life. Sustains Life (Devotion) Newborn: Devotion uses the Dor like mother’s milk to sustain Elantrians without other nourishment. Elantrians get the Dor through Aon Rao’s infusion of Elantris. Elantrians lose power as they travel from Elantris and their mother’s Spirit. Makes Cognitive Connections (Honor) Infant: Infants begin to form emotional attachments. Surgebinders get Honor’s magic through the Cognitive Connection of the Nahel bond. Sets Rules (Dominion) Toddler/Child: As the child’s world expands, authority begins to set rules and boundaries. Dominion’s programmatic forms set the rules by which Sel’s mortals get the Dor. Transforms (Cultivation) Teenager: The child transforms to an adult. IMO, Cultivation transforms native spren into potential Radiantspren. I think honorspren are Nahel-bondable windspren; Cryptics are Nahel-bondable creationspren; etc. Surgebinders get their power through these transformed spren. Grants Self-Sufficiency (Autonomy) Young Adult: The adult goes out on his/her own. IMO, Autonomy’s users get their magic “living off the land.” The Sand Mastery and Aviar systems give magic through local lifeforms. These systems enable Connected humans to survive hostile environments on their own. Maintains Stasis (Preservation) Middle Age: Life plateaus in the middle years. Brandon says, “in Preservation's case, the magic is a gift—allowing a person to preserve their own strength, and rely upon the strength granted by the magic.” Allomancy is a magical prosthesis. Breaks Cognitive Connections (Odium) Old Age: Adults age, and their Connections to others break down. Odium tries to give Dalinar power, and make Dalinar his Champion, by breaking Dalinar’s human Connections. Dalinar is left “Alone. So Alone.” The Thrill gives power by stripping a mortal’s morality, mercy, and remorse. The Fused have no qualms killing Singers, their own race, for whom they’re supposedly fighting. Decays (Ruin) Death: Life ends with death and decomposition, the return of matter and energy to the system. Hemalurgy is a decaying process – what Brandon calls a “net negative” system. Preservation tells Kelsier, “Everything passes, nothing is eternal. That is what Ati always claimed....” Other Shards I don’t include Ambition and the unknown Shards. We don’t know how they give their magic to mortals, except for the unplanned magic of Threnody’s Shades. Since the “Wheel” incorporates only 9 of the 16 Shards, there’s ample room for more life stages, particularly between young adult and middle age. Mandates and Personality – Are Mandates Intrinsic to Power? Read this section if you like “deep theory.” I believe equally valid theories can explain Mandates without affecting the way cosmere magic works – Mandates exist, regardless of why. These are just some stray thoughts. Conclusion I’ve tried to define Mandates in terms of mechanics – how Shards give their magic to mortals. It would be cool if Mandates do form a “Wheel of Life,” but that’s more “let’s keep an eye on this” than “theory” at this point. What do you all think?
  5. Like many before me, I have tried to predict the names of the remaining unrevealed Shards of Adonalsium. This is what I’ve come up with. First, read these two WoBs. When asked if all shards have direct opposites, Brandon says no. But when asked if all shards are paired, he gives it a RAFO. So these are clearly two different questions, and “no” is only the answer to one of them. Here’s my interpretation. All shards are paired, but not all pairs are direct opposites. I propose that there are two different kinds of shard pairings: Hard Opposites and Soft Opposites. Hard Opposites are directly opposed to each other. Their intents are in absolute conflict. The obvious example is Ruin and Preservation, destructive change and benevolent stasis. The conflict between them is Irreconcilable. If the intents of Hard Opposites are like enemies, the intents of Soft Opposites are more like rivals. They ultimately seek the same goal, or address the same issue, but with different philosophies. I believe Devotion and Dominion are Soft Opposites. They are two opposing philosophies on God’s relationship with his people. Dominion thinks God should rule his people, and Devotion thinks God should serve the people. It’s easy to see these two forces warring in the mind of the original God, Adonalsium. But despite their conflicting values, they are not entirely different from one another. They agree that the people-God relationship should exist. They would both be against an atheistic world, where gods keep to themselves. They have differing views, but common interests. Simply put, Soft Opposites have conflict, but they could probably settle on the same planet without killing each other, unlike Ruin and Preservation. Their intents can potentially compromise. Now that I have these terms defined, the next step is to look at all the unpaired shards we know of, and figure out if any of them are actually each other’s counterparts. Odium Honour Cultivation Autonomy Endowment Ambition I think I see a match. I think Autonomy is the Hard Opposite of Endowment. Autonomy is all about noninterference. She doesn’t want any cosmeric stuff to interact with her native people. That’s why Khriss was allowed to leave Taldain, but not to return. And I might even theorize that Autonomy doesn’t want her people (or people in general) to have magic at all, and that she constructed the astronomical weirdness of Taldain specifically to isolate her own magic system on the Dayside, and allow the Nightside civilization to develop magic-free. Endowment is clearly the opposite. Not only does she elevate people to godhood on a whim, she gives every human on Nalthis a little bit of magic to play around with. Endowment interferes, Autonomy doesn’t. Endowment gives power, Autonomy withholds it. Direct opposites. This is where things get highly speculative. We have four shards left with no obvious opposite, so I’m going to propose some hypothetical ones to complement them. Odium’s is the easiest. Odium is hate, so his opposite is love. Or, to use a more shardy-sounding name, Adoration. A Hard opposite. I know the love shard is an unpopular guess because it seems too easy, but bear with me. Adoration is not too similar to Devotion. Devotion is divine, paternal love; Adoration is personal, intimate love. Devotion is a philosophy, but Adoration... is Passion, Dalinar. Ambition’s opposite is Humility. This one also seems a bit obvious, but I think it works. Ambition always strives to achieve more, Humility is content with what it has. They are the two halves of God’s self-image. Ambition is the justifiable arrogance of the most powerful being in the universe, and Humility is the part that empathizes with the little people, and might even be appalled by its own power. Ambition wants power, Humility doesn’t. Ambition would have fought hard against the Shattering, Humility might have welcomed it. These are irreconcilable attitudes, and therefore Hard Opposites. I think the Hard Opposites are easier to figure out. Honor and Cultivation are more complex concepts, without an obvious opposite, which, I think, means they’ll have Soft Opposites. Cultivation’s is Artifice. I propose that this pair is the part of Adonalsium that dealt with creation. Creation is their shared priority, but they approach it in different ways. Cultivation is creation by encouragement, pruning, growth, and evolution. It’s the slow, organic, gentle kind of creation. Artifice is creation by construction, assembly, engineering, gears, and wrenches. Artifice builds things. Artifice will probably be found on a constructed planet, with perfect geometry in its geography, and whole species of golems. It’ll be a world where no one would ever conceive of evolution because everything was so obviously designed. Artifice’s magic system will probably resemble a crafting system. In Arcanum Unbounded, Khriss says “[Scadrial] is one of only two places in the cosmere where humankind does not predate the arrival of Shards.” I propose the other place is Artifice’s planet. Artifice would insist on creating her own variety of humans from scratch. Honor’s Soft Opposite is Conviction. Maybe there’s a better name for that. My first thought was “Ruthlessness,” but that doesn’t sound very shardy. Honor and Conviction are both committed to right action. They both encourage doing the right thing. But Conviction believes in “the ends justify the means.” Conviction encourages getting results by any means necessary, especially underhanded or devious means. He encourages healthy competition, and the survival of the fittest. Honor, of course, is committed to consistent rightness, in both ends and means. He is the thing you don’t sacrifice in pursuit of your goals. He believes in unity and cooperation. In other words, Honor is Dalinar. Conviction is Sadeas. We now have fourteen shards. Honor and Conviction Odium and Adoration Ruin and Preservation Devotion and Dominion Cultivation and Artifice Autonomy and Endowment Humility and Ambition That means we’re missing one pair. And this pair should include... the Survival Shard. Looking at what we have so far, I think we can group the shards into categories, each with four. Divinity Shards, which deal with the role of God in human society. Devotion, Dominion, Autonomy, Endowment. Physical Shards, which deal with creating and maintaining the physical universe. Cultivation, Artifice, Ruin, Preservation. Attitude Shards, which deal with God’s own values and morals. Honor, Conviction, Humility, Ambition. Emotion Shards, which are pretty obvious. Odium and Adoration. Look at that! One category is missing a pair. And you’ll notice that each category contains a pair of Hard Opposites (marked in bold) and a pair of Soft Opposites (marked in italics). So we need a pair of Soft Opposite Emotion Shards. I propose Sorrow and Fear. This idea comes from some old mental health wisdom, and I’m sorry I couldn’t figure out exactly who to attribute this to. It says that depression is when you’re fixated on the past, and anxiety is when you’re fixated on the future. Some people get stuck in one of those. Some people oscillate between them. I think Adonalsium was one of the latter. Sorrow is God’s depression. Fear is God’s anxiety. And Fear, which constantly obsesses about the future, is the shard with the most powerful precognitive abilities. It has foreseen things none of the other shards know about. Things so terrifying that it flees from them, fearing for its own survival. I could (and perhaps will) create a table of shards, like the allomantic table, which divides them into quadrants and into Soft vs Hard Opposites instead of Internal vs External metals. Thoughts? Scathing criticism? Insults?
  6. So while looking for evidence as to who Odium really is on this other thread I came across something fascinating: Reiss' theory of base desires. What caught my eye was the number of desires: 16. I can't find perfect correlations for all the currently known shards but there are some. I assume Sanderson would have edited them for his own needs and purposes but hopefully we can piece some stuff together. Alrighty, here is the list of 16 desires with the shards I think may fit with it. Acceptance Curiosity Eating- Survival Family- possibly Endowment? Honor- Honor (who would've thought?) Idealism Independence- Autonomy Order Physical Activity Power- Dominion Romance Saving- Preservation Social contact Social status- possibly Ambition? Tranquility- possibly Devotion? Vengeance So I am missing a few shards on here, namely Odium, Cultivation and Ruin, but there is Vengeance, Order and idealism that may work If this works and we then find good words to describe the desires, perhaps we could figure out the rest of the shards. If you agree with my idea, Shard names for the others would be appreciated I hope this theory holds some water, but have fun ripping it to pieces!
  7. I can't back this up with direct quotes, although some of the theorizing done in this thread, which is also pretty light on evidence. I'm sure this is unoriginal but I wanted to pound it into steel so that my brain doesn't Ruin it later. I think that pre-Shattered Adonalsium was devoid of consciousness, or at least devoid of any express personality traits or intents. It's motivation (or I guess technically intent, although that's shaky) was to create. If he were a shard, his intent would be "Creation," but there would be no subjectivity to it (unlike "Honor" which is an invented concept. Why then, if Adonalsium lacked personality and intent before, do its Shards have such varied and often fanatical personalities now? I believe that this is a bit like a reverse-Harmony effect. When Ruin and Preservation were "merged, but not completely merged, but still pretty much merged" (relevant thread exists, but theory author is too lazy to find link), Harmony became hard pressed to do anything consequential, since he had opposing intents. Now while we have WoB stating that not all shards form opposite pairings, it is safe to assume that even if Adonalsium consisted only of currently known shards (Honor, Cultivation, Odium, Autonomy, Dominion, Devotion, Endowment, Ambition, Ruin, Preservation, and/or Harmony) they would have a pretty hard time doing anything, let alone CREATING anything, that would suit all of their intents in equal measure. So, when Adonalsium was composed, presumably in equal parts, of all of different intents, they could have cancelled out and created an emotion- and personality-neutral being that simply existed and brought new things into existence. There IS an obvious problem with this, which is that according to my own logic, Adonalsium would have been incapable of creating almost anything because of his internal conflict, but there are explanations that I'm sure could handwave this problem away.
  8. This is less a theory and more an observation and a curiosity. We know that the shards are pretty heavily limited by their shardic intent. My curiosity is about how the intent influences other shards interactions with them. Take the case of Ruin and Preservation for example. Ruin had won for a long, long time. Preservation just took a ridiculously long time to die. Is that because when interacting with Preservation Ruin is weakened when applying a final death that is contrary to Preservations intent? Now take Ruin, when Vin kills him, he dies literally right away. No hanging around in that case. Is that because Ruins own intent accelerates his demise at the hands of Vin? Moving more into the realm of supposition, many assume Trell to be Autonomy. Harmony despite theoretically having twice as much power as her can't even find her! She is autonomous, her intent confounds him from exerting influence over her. I know there are contextual considerations in those scenarios. Preservation's plan, Harmony's relative ignorance about what shards are capable of. I am mostly just curious as to whether other people have had any similar thoughts, or if it seems plausible that the context is in some way a result of shardic intent in the interaction between shards rather than simply on the shard themselves. I haven't covered Honor, Cultivation or Odium here because I don't think we've seen enough of those interactions to draw conclusions, but if anyone else has ideas related to them I'd be interested to read them.
  9. This theory comes from thinking about the likelihood that Adonalsium and his shards and attributes are based on or closely related to Earth religions. It is important to note that I am not suggesting that these books are allegorical. Their internal consistency and foundation have been made stronger by the study of world religions. These ideas were sparked by thinking about Odium as a manifestation of divine wrath: This is something that has been discussed already, but I think it is a huge clue to what is going on with the shards more generally. Although Odium is described as “divine hatred,” I think readers have correctly interpreted this to mean “wrath.” (I think it’s also possible that some of the other shards—perhaps especially those with weaker or very compatible vessels—have gone a little “batty” from being isolated from other divine virtues that would have kept them from going overboard with their Intent.) So, anyway, substituting Odium for the theologically familiar “wrath” is a smart move, as it allows for some speculation but is not blatant. Some shards, such as Endowment and Dominion are actual theological concepts, but they are less obvious to readers than Wrath would have been. This brings me to another possible substitution: “Honor” as a replacement for “Covenant.” There is a lot of debate over the relationship between goodness and honor, but what if Honor represents the covenants that a god makes with a people? (Covenant—or compact, if you like—also has legal and social meanings in addition to the theological one.) Thinking of Honor as representing covenants maintains the oath and bonds aspect of Honor, but it should allow us to talk about honor (and Honor) with less emphasis on goodness. On the other side of the coin, it also allows for more flexibility and room for interpretation with how covenants, oaths, and bonds are “honored” in-world. (Rightness vs. Justice vs. Letter of the Law, etc.) It is probably more useful to think of “honor” as a verb: to enforce or follow through on a covenant, oath, or to maintain a bond. Again, I am not arguing that the possible use of the concept of a covenant is allegorical. Tanavast never sent a rainbow after a particularly bad Highstorm. Gods make promises to and agreements with their followers. I won’t attempt to rewrite our understanding of the Cosmere or even of SA with this theory. I am more interested in how it could influence existing discussions and current and future theories. The one application I’ll suggest is also probably the most obvious. I suspect Adonalsium already had a covenant with the Listeners before his shattering: Post shattering, Honor, now separated from “the whole” appeared with the more Physically-inclined, spren-attracting humans and a willingness to betray or downgrade preexisting covenants. For a Listener, flirting with some other gods would not be unreasonable under those circumstances. Keeping in mind that Honor may have been a little intense with his Intent as a shard, are there other ways that covenants and agreements might have ended up a bit “off”? What is the Oathpact? Why do the Heralds blame Honor for their situation? Is a hypothetical Parshendi covenant still in existence somehow? Finally, I realize that this doesn’t touch on Cultivation’s role, though hopefully it will lead to speculation about how she fits into this picture. I’m very interested to hear thoughts on this idea! Also, I'm just realizing the bad timing of suggesting a theory just before we dig into the first chapters of Oathbringer. Oh well!
  10. For the longest time, we've operated under the assumption that the Intent of a Shard would overwrite the Personality of it's Vessel. We have WoB proof, so it's not a big surprise. However, we have also made assumptions that the particular flavor of the Intent also affects that overwriting change. Autonomy has been our flagship example, as that autonomous force might allow Bavadin to act against her Intent. However, as we have never brought that logic past Autonomy to any of the other Shards, I think there is more to it than just that. We know that the Vessels have a limited ability to filter the Intent of their Shard when they are using its power, and it is my belief that while they affect the power, it affects them, subtly changing their personality to be more in tune with the Intent. So without further ado, here is my preliminary list about the effects Intent has on the Vessels. Ambition - Strengthens urge to act, Lessens self-doubt Autonomy - Cultivation - "Cultivates" the personality of the Vessel, trimming undesirable qualities while nurturing desirable ones Devotion - Strengthens commitment and empathy, Lessens apathy Dominion - Strengthens desire for structure and authority, Lessens desire for chaos/lawlessness Endowment - Strengthens generosity, Lessens selfishness Honor - Influences the vessel's moral compass, making actions into black & white judgements Odium - Heightens anger and enmity, Lessens empathy Preservation - Ruin - "Ruins" the personality, decaying desirable and undesirable qualities alike As for how that affects the Vessel's ability to resist the Shard, I believe that (contrary to popular belief) the Shard gains greater control as the Vessel's personality gets closer to matching the Shardic Intent. When the Vessel uses the power, they become affected by it, and that change eventually reaches a point where the Shardic Intent and the Vessel's personality are no longer different, allowing the Shard to assume full control over it's "host." Ambition - Removes all trace of doubt and inhibition(is there a more proper term for 'what makes you hold back'?), turning the vessel's personality into pure Ambition to act. Autonomy - Cultivation - Prunes away all undesired qualities and aspects of the vessel's personality, making it indistinguishable from Cultivation itself. Devotion - Removes all trace of apathy and indifference, morphing the vessel's personality into pure Devotion. Dominion - Hems in concepts of rebellion/dissent, melding the vessel's personality into one of control and Dominion. Endowment - Removes all trace of selfishness and greed, warping the vessel's personality into one of Endowing(giving) and charity. Honor - Odium - Removes all compassionate tendencies, consuming the vessel's personality with pure Odium. Preservation - Ruin - Removes all trace of constructive tendencies, and then decaying the rest of the personality, leaving only Ruin. Edit v1 (7/1/17): Reformatting, Included several suggestions from Calderis's post here.
  11. This post is another in my periodic series, “A Theory of Cosmere Magic.” As with all my posts, please preface each statement with “In my opinion….” SUMMARY 1. The Powers originally lacked “thoughts and personalities.” (HoA, Chapter 55 Epigraph.) I interpret Sazed’s comment to mean “Adonalsium” lacked thoughts and personalities. 2. The Vessels did have “thoughts and personalities.” When the Vessels Ascended, the Powers had to accommodate themselves to their new directing minds. That created Mandates. 3. Mandate “permanence” and Mandate “compulsion” help the Powers maintain their efficiency. These Mandate properties imprint and widen the Internal Connection between the Vessel’s mind and the Powers (that is, between its Cognitive and Spiritual Realm aspects). THE MEANING OF MANDATES Sixteen Colored Lenses. In Preservation’s metaphor of the Realms (M:SH), the Cognitive Realm distorts the Spiritual Realm’s perfection on its way to the Physical Realm. Pre-Shattering, there was no distortion – Adonalsium had a clear lens, allowing the perfect “white” light of the Powers to shine through to the Physical Realm. The Shattering replaced Adonalsium’s perfect white light with 16 different colored lenses. Doesn’t Affect Powers. The Powers themselves are still “perfect,” though divided into 16 originally equal Spiritual Realm parts. As Spiritual Realm Investiture, the Powers are “consistent” regardless of their Mandate. Post-Shattering the Powers pass through a Mandated Cognitive lens that “colors” the magic on its way to the Physical Realm – a “color” caused by the Vessel’s dominant character trait at the moment of Ascension. Mandates affect only the use of the Powers, not their Spiritual Realm perfection: “The means of getting powers…are related to the Shards, but not the powers themselves.” Similarly, “The 'role' of the Shard has to do with the WAY the magic is obtained, not what it can do.” ORIGIN OF MANDATES Connection to Vessel’s Soul. The Shattering created Mandates. They arose because, unlike Adonalsium, each Vessel already had a Spiritweb and was part of “Creation” (the sum of all Spiritwebs and their corresponding aspects). That meant the Powers had to Connect to the Vessels’ souls. Evidence of this Powers-Vessel Connection: Vin, Leras and Ati’s bodies re-materialized after their deaths. Cognitive Connection. The Powers Internally Connected to their Vessel’s mind and vaporized their Vessel’s body. The Powers took each Vessel’s mind as it was. This imprinted the Shard with the Vessel’s dominant character trait – Brandon says the Shattering could have spawned different Mandates, different Cognitive filters. Each Vessel became the Shard of that dominant trait: Ambition, Autonomy, Cultivation, Devotion, Dominion, Endowment, Honor, Odium, Preservation and Ruin. Example: Preservation tells Kelsier in M:SH that "Everything passes, nothing is eternal. That is what Ati always claimed. [Emphasis added.]” Ati “always” saw things through that prism, always identified with Ruin, even before his Ascension. He may have been a “kind and generous man,” but he believed in decay, in the inevitable destruction of all things. This example highlights the difference between “personality” (Ati’s kindness) and character (Ati’s strong belief in “decay” that became Ruin’s Mandate). In a description of cognitive shadows, Brandon says, Cognitive shadows are not Shards, and their creation process is not the same. But Brandon’s description of cognitive shadows seems to apply to the Ascension of Vessels: Ascension results in a mind “infused with Investiture.” This infusion permanently imprints a Shard with its Vessel’s pre-Ascension character “like minerals with petrified wood.” PROPERTIES OF MANDATES Mandate Permanence. The imprint on the Powers of each Vessel’s dominant character trait at the moment of Ascension became that Shard’s permanent Mandate. The Vessel’s character seems to attune the Powers, allowing them to be held or used only by someone with precisely the same character: Examples: Kelsier, Vin and Sazed all held the Powers. Kelsier couldn’t fully use Preservation’s Powers because he was too Connected to Ruin and didn’t match Leras’ character, as the Preservation Shard required. Vin could fully absorb Preservation’s Powers after her “attuning” at the Well. Sazed’s balanced character had no trouble picking up both Preservation and Ruin. Mandate Compulsion. Mandates initially don’t affect the personal behavior of Shards, their “personalities.” But the Powers WANT to be used with their full force, with little resistance. They push to widen the Connection between the Shard’s Cognitive and Spiritual Realm aspects. Eventually the Powers may widen this Connection until the Mandate overwhelms the Shard’s personality, aligning it with the Mandate. This happened with Ati. Brandon suggests some Vessels resist the Mandate’s compulsion better than others. Harmony himself distinguishes between personality and Mandate (SoS, Kindle, p. 134): Mandate compulsion resembles a Knight Radiant’s Nahel bond (though the mechanism is different). The Nahel bond strengthens as the Knight and its spren come into closer alignment through the Knight’s expression of his/her ideals. The strengthened bond increases the Power a Knight Radiant can wield. The Shard likewise can more forcefully assert the Powers as the Vessel’s personality and the Shard’s Mandate align. Relationship Between Mandate Permanence and Compulsion. Together, Mandate permanence and compulsion increase the Shard’s Power efficiency. They create one wide permanent pipeline for the Powers. Mandate compulsion widens the Internal Connection between a Vessel’s mind and the Powers by aligning “personality” to Mandate. Mandate permanence locks in that Connection. Otherwise, changes to the Vessel’s character or the Ascension of a new Vessel for that Shard would alter the Connection, defeating the effects of Mandate compulsion.
  12. So, this just popped into my head, but my theory is that, at least in relation to the other shards, Autonomy's holder is not as restricted by the effects of his/her intent. Don't get me wrong, I don't believe that they could go directly against their mandate, but more that, by following their mandate, they are given far more freedom to act within the cosmere than the other shards we know. Its 1:30am here and I'm on a break at work, so I don't have time to go into much more depth than this, I will post more about it tomorrow, but please, in the meantime, discuss!
  13. Hi guys, i've got two theories (not mutually exclusive) for why Odium can Splinter other Shards. 1.Odium is more powerful than the other Shards. While i've constantly seen references to Adonalsium shattering into sixteen pieces, i don't think i've ever heard mention ofthose pieces being equal in size. Maybe when the Vessels were taking the power Rayse took a bigger chunk of Mr A's corpse. This would enable him to overpower other Shards and kill them whilst still having enough power to survive. 2.Odium's Intent causes the Splintering Odium means extreme hatred and dislike, and also the state of being hated. Hate also causes people to turn away from one another, to divide. What if this applies on a Shardic level as well? What if Odium can infect a Shard with hatred? Self hatred to be exact. Similar to a virus turning a body's immune system against itself, what if it does the same to the Shard, which causes it to fracture and essentially self-splinter. It would also make sense why we haven't seen other Shards do this. For example, Dominion and Devotion, while seemingly different are in the end both about unity. They couldn't Splinter others even if they tried. The same goes for Preservation, Honor and probably Cultivation. This gives Odium a major advantage. Ruin may be able to do it but remember that he was imprisoned by Preservation for millenia and couldn't find enough opportunity to practise. Also, while Rayse was a nasty fellow even before becoming Odium and thus naturally inclined to find a way to kill the others, Ati was supposedly a pretty nice guy. It wouldn't be in his nature to practise this. That's it guys, could be on to something or it could be a load of crem Thanks anyway, interested to hear what you think.
  14. I have been meaning to write this for a while, but recent threads made me decide to make time for this. I will try to be brief on a deep topic. Many readers misunderstand what is meant by the Intents of the Shards. Specifically, they misunderstand what an Intent is without the context of having other Intents with it. An isolated Intent can be very unpredictable and even seem to work against itself. I will give some examples, but will leave you to extrapolate and contemplate what the means for all the other Intents. Ruin's Intent has also been described by himself as progression, change, aging, entropy, and nesessary for anything to evolve. But without Cultivation, entropy is stronger than progression. Without Preservation, passing forms that are desirable do not remain, so even good changes are passing and only statistically useful. Without Honor, the changes will never be tied to an agreement or morals, so they cannot be counted on. Without Autonomy, Ruin becomes dependent on controlling others to achieve its ends. Etc. Cultivation may indeed be controlled growth, but no Ruin means seasons and withering of your project does not happen. Do you care about the feelings of your creations without the intent of Love? How do you keep your creations without Preservation? Honor without Love, Autonomy, Forgiveness, and Preservation is hard to imagine. The list goes on. A single intent ( like Odium, or divine hatred), without its opposite or other binding Intents is a radical to even itself. I think more pondering on an untempered Intent would give us a better idea of what to expect, and might keep us from simplifying our judgments to a Good Shard and an Evil Shard.
  15. Hello everyone, new guy here with plenty of questions!!! I was perusing the forums when something struck me. A Shard's Intent limits what they are capable of. For example Ruin can't create things, and Preservation can't destroy. But, what if it makes them better at what they can do? When comparing Ruin to, say, Dominion or Odium, is Ruin the same at destroying stuff as them, or is he better because of his Intent? Also, if a Shard came along with no Intent, would it be capable of doing everything the other Shards can do, such as create and destroy, dominate and be autonomous? Thanks in advance.
  16. Spoilers for Warbreaker and Stormlight Maybe I just need more caffeine this morning, but I'm having trouble making sense of a recent reply from Brandon on reddit: Am I correct that Brandon confirmed that other shards have an equivalent or related ability to commands? If so, do you think there is more than just the surface meaning of Dalinar labeling "unite them" as a "phantom command"?
  17. theory

    (The following are based on the possibility if Intents were not blank at first when Shattering. Here we go) In the Second Letter, we can see It could be interpreted as that Rayse "purified" the initial Intent of his Shard, and somehow distort it into merely hatred, thus become Odium. Most would agree that Vessels' mind would be affected by the Intent. What if, vice versa, the Vessels can change Intents to some extent? And I believe there are some friends had the same following question: Why Honor and Ruin, and such, are parts of the Force of Creation? If the Vessels are truly able to change the Intents, then the problem could be easily solved. In one WoB we know that Ruin actually means "pursuing the entropy maximum in the universe". Entropy is related to a progression that energy or information goes from regular to irregular and chaos, and finally the balance of energy. It's an inevitable process of the nature. And most importantly, it's neutral. Maybe Ruin is just kinda easy interpretation. The original Intent is Entropy. Same, So "Honor" might be an added context Tanavast gave, the original Intent was Bond. Dominion could originally mean Occupancy, and so on. Conclusion: if the Intents were designed when Shattering happened, then the original Intents might be neutral. Does that make sense? Surely there might get some flaws or my ignorance. Show me some new perspectives, thx:)
  18. I previously theorized that Adonalsium’s Shattering caused the powers of creation to “choose” the Shard each Vessel became based on the Vessel’s dominant psychological trait. Our new understanding of Connections IMO confirms the theory: the power chose the Shard based on each Vessel’s Connection with that aspect of Adonalsium. Evidence: 1. The biggest objection to my initial theory was Ati. How could such a “kind and generous man” have become Ruin the Destroyer? But Preservation tells Kelsier in M:SH that "Everything passes, nothing is eternal. That is what Ati always claimed... [emphasis added]” Preservation here refers to Ati, not Ruin. That suggests that Ati always had an affinity for Ruin, even before his ascension, as a matter of deep-seated personal belief. He was Connected to Ruin despite his personality. 2. Brandon says that different Vessels would have had different mandates (intents). That suggests the mandates were based on something personal to each Vessel. 3. Kelsier had difficulties holding Preservation because he was so Connected to Ruin. As a “destroyer,” Kelsier has few equals: see you later, TFE… I use the word “mandate” instead of “intent” because that’s the word Sazed himself uses. In HoA, Sazed describes the mists as acting with a "vague will of their own tied to the mandate of their abilities" (HoA, Chapter 79, emphasis added.) I think that’s what we mean when we talk about a Shard’s “intent,” a word coined by Chaos in an excellent post some years ago. I prefer the textual word. Does this sound right?
  19. I just realized some crucial difference: some Shardholders have more freedom in their deeds than the others, regardless of their minds being warped to its Shard Intent or not. It depends on the Intent. For example: Preservation - makes it holder want to preserve all things. Cannot create, cannot change, can only preserve. Ruin - makes it holder want to ruin everything. Cannot create, cannot preserve, can only ruin. Odium - makes it holder want to hate everything (and apparently being hated by everyone) while Shards like: Honor - makes it holder want to be honorable... but he still has freedom to do anything, as long as it's a honorable thing and he is honorable about it Devotion - similarly, it only requires the holder to be devoted to some cause, doesn't specify what cause. And maybe inspire devotion in others. It's late in the night, so I will try to map other Shards later
  20. First ever thread!! Hopefully I can construct these thoughts properly. Though I warn you I will probably end up all over the place. SoS - I've just finished SoS and have seen some bits around about Bavadin's shards intent, Autonomy. It strikes me as pertinent that the identity of a shard has been released so close after finding out there is another likely god metal on Scadrial. I would guess that Autonomy/Bavadin is working with Oduim to splinter the shards to remove the interference of the shardholders from the Cosmere, including himself. As we've seen with Preservation Shards are not frightened to destroy themselves to ensure there intent is met. This fits with the Autonomy. Bleeder also had a fanatical belief she was freeing people from Harmony's interference. The god metal spike seen at the end of SoS had, I believe, bits of red rust on, I wonder if Autonomy and Odium are working together and this has corrupted his investiture, the rust the physical realms representation of this. I like the name Autonium Rust and ruin - WoB has said to look closer at the rust and ruin phrase closer. Ruin is obviously just ruin, but rust could represent a completely different shard. It could be everything I've written so far is wrong. Rust could represent a shard, pluck from the air, Decay maybe? Someone also mentioned on a post a while ago that BS had put a clue in his book regarding Trelagism and Trell was mentioned in SoS, Trell had a brother and his name was Nalt. Nalthis is the planet Endowment is. More overlapping Cosmere theology. Belief - My thoughts on the way Odium splinters Shards and the way shards are powered in a sense would be rooted in belief. One of BS best qualities as a writer is how he incorporates religion into the magic system, and how normal people can become figures or religious belief. Now what if the shards themselves are powered by belief, Bleeder tried to break free Elendel from Harmony's control, for the lack of a better word, but this also would have broken down the belief system and government as part of the plan. This would weaken Harmony and give Autonomy or Odium an opening to attack maybe? Not a great theory but could be plausible. Gateways and Stormlight - This is just a thought I've been having regarding the way magic interacts with different worlds. WoB is that when an allomancer burns a metal it is giving access to the power of the shards/creation, a gateway to access magic, each metal is a gateway to a certain power much in the same way that drawing an Aon accesses the Dor with a specific outcome, channeling the power for a specific purpose. On Nalthis each person has a breath to begin with, they are Endowed with a small part of the shard, much like the way life on Scadrial has both preservation and ruin in them. In Mistborn people are picked for there actions to become more, but as the powers come from both preservation and ruin it's not about good or bad actions but almost random, balanced. This is opposed by the investiture on Nalthis, where you have an innate breath at birth, a link to god, but you are Endowed with a divine breath if you are found deserving, dying to save someone. Each of these links or gateways can run out or be used up with The exception to the rule is Roshar, I think anyway. Spren are the gateway and stormlight is the power that is used. Does this mean that Roshar is the nexus for the power of creation as stormlight is freely available to all people, just most don't have the link to access it personally. Like I say these are mostly the ramblings of a madman, think I may have been spiked by BS to miss all points. Thoughts anyone?
  21. I was thinking of posting this in the other topic but i felt it was marginally different enough that it might warrant its own topic *mods, if this isn't the case, you know the drill* Now seeing as we have barely any concrete information on the 17th Shard and their purpose, this is just theoretical speculation/speculative theory and could just be reiterating what we already know, but i thought it an interesting view So from what little information we do have, the 17th Shard seem to take a very non-interference approach to matters relating to the Shards and perhaps to the Cosmere as an extension. We know they don't take too well to people meddling in Shardic matters as demonstrated by Hoid and in the Letter to his old reptile-like friend. Carrying on from that, I think it very possible they will intervene to prevent people (and possibly factions) with the skills and resources from causing wide-scale ramifications (aka Hoid) from interfering also. Spoilered for some references in soon-to-be published works TC;DR: Basically to summarise, I think that the 17th Shard are meant to represent the/an Intent that Adonalsium didn't have (doesn't particular narrow it down, I know but I think it could be something relating to Observation/Restraint etc. etc.) Their purpose is to monitor and record Investiture-related shenanigans along with the history of the Cosmere, with very little direct intervention on their part.
  22. [i've amended this post to reflect the many excellent comments of posters.] My thesis is that the Shards' names do NOT accurately state their mandates (what we've been calling "intents"). Odium does not mean "hatred" (and is certainly not "evil"); Honor does not mean "honor"; and Cultivation does not mean amber waves of grain. I also don't think Endowment refers to body shape. They're all just cool-sounding placeholder names that vaguely relate to the mandate. I use the word "mandate," rather than "intent" for two reasons. First, "intent" implies choice. You can change your mind and hence your intent. But "mandate" is compulsory. A Shard may fight against a mandate's compulsions, but it is a struggle, not a choice. (Chaos coined the term "intent" in an excellent post some years ago called "The Principle of Intent." The Coppermind considers the term non-canonical, although Brandon himself often uses it.) The second reason is textual. In HoA, Sazed describes the mists as acting with a "vague will of their own tied to the mandate of their abilities" (HoA, Chapter 79, emphasis added.) This phrase clearly refers to what we call "intent." Since Sazed says "mandate," so do I. Feel free to use "intent" if you'd like. Before commencing this discussion, permit me... A Personal Note Many posters have kindly commented on my "creative" (that's spelled "N-U-T-T-Y") theories . To me, that's the value of having one's ideas vetted. You've helped sharpen my ideas and arguments, as reflected in this revised OP. I've learned things from you folks. I've been active lately because of the gift of my first Kindle a few months back. I LOVE actual books - the touch, the smell, the heft. But OMG, the convenience of e-books! I can search, highlight and take notes! The first two books I bought and re-read were, naturally, WoK and WoR. I consider WoK the best full-length novel Brandon has written - better than any of the Mistborn books, better than WoR, better than anything other than The Emperor's Soul, which is a jewel. I began thinking of how things worked in the Cosmere. I questioned everything and turned everything upside down and backwards. Examples of my questions include Is Odium an entropic hero for splintering Shards? Does he really want to be "last Shard standing" or will he splinter himself in the end, supplanting a magical oligarchy with a magical democracy (or at least a republic) of splinters? Is Honor a good guy (Tanavast did buy Hoid drinks once), or has he restrained social, material and biological evolution on Roshar by binding things up and slowing things down? What happened to the friendship between Hoid and Rayse that now leads Hoid to so fear Rayse? (Hoid visiting Braize is "The Biggest RAFO!!!!" according to Brandon.) I'd already come up with close to 30 topics by the time I posted the first one the other day. But my ideas aren't fully ready for Prime Time. My "Confused Theory of Everything" is still too confused. (Not that that's going to stop me...) I posted anyway because a recent topic on Honorblades being fabrials came close to my idea that the Heralds are spren. (None of you agree with this idea - yet - but as Gollum said to Frodo when he entered Shelob's cave, "you'll see, you'll see...") Once I came out with that Honorblades post, I had to start posting other topics, ready or not, because they're all interconnected. That's one reason you people have been so helpful. (After I'm done with this writing Surge - a long way to go yet - I'll probably settle back, read a bunch of stuff you folks write, and try to get my revised Theory out before Oathbringer.) Which takes me to this post. People may not agree with my analysis here either, although I don't think this one will be too controversial. But it became necessary to finish this one because of the nature of the objections to some of my other posts. Life's complicated, and so is writing. Here we are. And to those of you waiting for my responses to your comments on other threads, they're still coming. I owe A LOT of people responses on A LOT of threads. INTRODUCTION Now, where was I? Oh, yes: The Shards' names, while cool-sounding, relate only vaguely to their mandates. For example, Brandon says "Technically, Ruin would be most compatible with Cultivation. Ruin's 'theme' so to speak is that all things must age and pass. An embodiment of entropy." March 2013 Reddit Interview (No. 1) (emphasis added). Sazed is consonant: "It is too easy for people to characterize Ruin as simply a force of destruction. Think rather of Ruin as intelligent decay. Not simply chaos, but a force that sought in a rational - and dangerous - way to break everything down to its most basic forms HoA, Epigraph to Chapter 8 (emphasis added). I've theorized that Adonalsium's power chose each person who became a Shard based on the compatibility of the Shard's mandate with that person's unconscious drives. This has led to controversy, especially over Ruin/Ati. Many disagree with that theory. REGARDLESS OF WHETHER or why the power chose its Shard, or whether the Shard chose its power, or whether it was all random, the mandates are nonetheless real. Sazed makes that clear, as he does the fact that the mandates come from Adonalsium and pre-exist the Shards. When contemplating each mandate, I've tried to be as "abstract" as possible (which for me may not be much), encompassing the broadest swath of human behavior. A mandate should not be too specific or restrictive. So, without further delay (1,000 words or so into this essay), here's my take on the "mandates" of the known Shards, other than Ruin (intelligent decay) and Preservation (stability). SHARD MANDATES Cultivation Cultivation's mandate is SURVIVAL - to proceed, to move on, to progress, regardless of obstacles - life must continue. Cultivation doesn't care whether it continues as greatshells or as cremlings. Like the Nightwatcher, who is partially her spren, Cultivation represents the randomness that produces evolutionary effects. Cultivation as a Shard is neutral in the conflict between Honor and Odium, even though the person who became Cultivation may once have cared for Tanavast. If anything, Cultivation favors Odium's mandate (see below) because it leads to the kind of aggressive competition Darwin described as "natural selection," later termed "survival of the fittest" by Herbert Spencer. Kaellok in a post below believes "GROWTH" would be a better descriptor for Cultivation's mandate than "Survival." "Growth" to me moves only in one direction, towards more and more life. Left to itself, uncontrolled Growth would fulfill Malthus's theory -- geometric proliferation causing all life to cease, running out of some essential element. Just as Ruin and Preservation needed each other, Cultivation requires a decaying, entropic agent for life to flourish. That's why Brandon says Ruin's mandate may be most compatible with Cultivation's. "Growth" includes no entropic agent. In 2012, Brandon inscribed in a copy of The Way of Kings that one Shard was in hiding and concerned with its survival. After searching the database, I found this "paraphrased" report: "So I asked Brandon at the LA signing if he could tell us about a shard that we don't know anything about (including the survival shard) and he said that there was a shard that isn't on a planet. Now I think this means that the shard is either on an asteroid, or a star. It could also be floating in space or on a moon and influencing from a distance. I will repeat it is not any shard we already know about." I view this statement as strongly implying the "survival shard" is Cultivation. (There may be other threads on this subject; I haven't checked.) The "off planet" stuff is important. I believe the three moons of Roshar are the Physical Realm embodiment of Honor's, Cultlivation's and Odium's power, their "bodies." Each Shard's color is thematic: Honor is blue, Odium is purple, and Cultivation is green. That is the color of each moon. The person who became Cultivation, and whose mind still wields Cultivation's power, may not be on that moon, however (or on Ashlyn, third planet in the Roshar system). I believe that's what Brandon means when he says that Shard is in hiding. Technically, the Shard and the person are one, not a separate "holder" and Shard. Devotion and Dominion Devotion and Dominion established a symbiotic relationship. Perhaps they were lovers before they were Shards. Pre-splintering, Dominion created the form necessary to access investiture - the means to control that investiture (or so I believe). But it was Devotion's investiture that Dominion controlled - Dominion took what Devotion willingly and lovingly gave. I believe the Shards' splintering caused the fragmentation of Selian magic systems. We know from The Emperor's Soul that soulstone (or whatever its name is) fell from the sky on MaiPon. I posit soulstone came from the fracturing of Dominion's moon (his body). Wherever his meteors fell, a different magic system was created based on how much of his body fell there. Moogle has "reminded" me that the Dor is a mix of Dominion's and Devotion's investiture. Because the Dor supplies the investiture that executes the Aons' commands, I speculate that Devotion's investiture dominates that mix. Devotion's mandate is LOVE: goodness and giving. Dominion's mandate is CONTROL: to take possession of and develop, manage and expand. I think Brandon's idea is in part the Biblical directive for humanity to be stewards of the land. Endowment Brandon describes Endowment's gifts of Breath as "sticky." Unlike Stormlight, Breath does not dissipate. The nature of "endowment" is to bestow a permanent foundational gift on someone. Endowment’s mandate is GENEROSITY: helping others even at great cost to yourself. The Returned - who hold Divine Breath, splinters of Endowment that carry her mandate - are visible examples. (Thank you, both Moogle and Weiry, for clarifying the nature of the Returned. I hope I got it right this time.) Moogle suggests that Endowment's mandate is closer to "Sacrifice," pointing to the Returned. There is a large element of that, no question, but in trying to expand the mandate as broadly as possible, I chose "Generosity." Honor Honor's mandate is RELATIONSHIPS. Syl describes herself as "Spirit of oaths. Of promises. And of nobility." (WoK, Kindle p. 913.) As an honorspren, she "binds things." Oaths, promises and nobility all establish social organization among humanity. "Unite them." Honor imposes the Social Contract, from family to clan to country to world. I broadened Honor's mandate in this revision to eliminate the qualiier "all living organisms" after "Relationships." I propose that Honor creates organization - "Relationships" - in EVERYTHING...right down to the molecular level. Else, how could he have provided the Heralds the Surges he did? Regarding biological relationships, I do not believe Cultivation by herself could create complex organisms. It's not in her nature to care about that. Cultivation would be as happy playing with her pet paramecia, amoebae, viruses and bacteria all the time. Honor provides the organizational tools to begin constructing the building blocks of life. Odium I agree with Kaellok: Odium's mandate is AGGRESSION (not Intensity, as first proposed). Odium takes normal feelings and sharpens them, readies them for battle, makes them more "in your face." In the WoR I-11 Interlude, Eshonai feels Fury, Irritation, Spite. The old rhythm of Amusement is replaced by a new rhythm of Ridicule. Brandon makes us FEEL Eshonai's heightened aggression in her encounters with the Five. We know (believe? status?) that one of the Unmade, a splinter of Odium carrying his mandate, causes the Thrill to "surge" through the Alethi. While the Thrill enthralls him, Dalinar "bellows," "roars," and "growls." Check out his battle scenes. Because of his Aggression, Odium is a loner, individualistic, inherently divisive, incapable of bonding or forming relationships. By virtue of his very isolation, Odium must be careful, foresightful and cunning if he is to survive. He helps Cultivation grow life through his Aggression mandate - "survival of the fittest;" as mentioned above. Contrary to a popular view, Odium is not evil, anymore than a lion or tiger is evil. His mandate is to sharpen normal reactions with Aggression. CONCLUSION Once again, thanks all! I look forward to your comments.
  23. “(You’ve Got) Personality” – Harold Logan and Lloyd Price Summary At or after the Shattering, Adonalsium’s Powers of Creation (the “Powers”) attached themselves to the sixteen Shards in equal and identical pieces. At the time of their attachment, these Powers lacked “thoughts and personalities” but already had what Sazed/Harmony calls the “mandate of [a Shard’s] abilities” (what we’ve been calling “intent.”) These “mandates” (intents) came from Adonalsium. BUT – the distribution of powers upon the Shattering wasn’t random. Like RadiantSpren, the Shattered powers sought cognitively “like-minded” hosts. Each mandated power could be taken only by a Shard whose “mind” could direct that power. Power needs to be matched with a mind that can wield it. Over time, the dominant drive of that Shard – the reason the power chose it in the first place – came to squeeze out all other feelings and drives. Ati became Ruin. That dominant drive arose in each Shard’s unconscious, built into their SpiritWeb. (Forbidden Planet, anyone?) Argument and Analysis WoB mentions that Adonalsium had an “enemy” who had developed a “weapon.” Brandon’s words, as usual, are so vague that they could refer to anyone or anything. So I won’t here speculate on HOW or WHY the Shattering occurred. Brandon has stated the Shattering happened about 10,000 years ago, but this estimate is non-canonical. Facts we DON’T know include whether the “people” who became the Shards (i) planned and executed the Shattering or were simply bystanders; and (ii) intended to acquire the Powers themselves. Brandon calls the entities who became Shards “people” to obscure whether they were all human. (WoB, Question #25.) The best we can say is that these “people” were likely the closest sapient beings with the right “temperaments” when Adonalsium’s Shattered Powers went looking for new hosts. Even that is uncertain. We also don’t know WHY the Powers Shattered into sixteen equal parts. We DO know from Brandon that the Power of each Shard began as equal. From this fact, I induce that the MIX of Powers exercisable by each Shard was (and is) identical, including equal amounts of each of the ten Powers we are aware of. Adonalsium Shattered vertically, along the fault lines of the mandates (intents), not horizontally across the spectrum of Powers. That is not necessarily a sound mathematical conclusion. But it best establishes a thematic story line – that the only difference among Shards (at least at the beginning) is how each Shard expresses its Powers through its mandate (intent). We also have the evidence this quote from Sazed/Harmony provides: “These two minds [Ruin and Preservation] were, of course, independent of the raw force of their powers. Actually, I am uncertain of how thoughts and personalities came to be attached to the powers in the first place – but I believe they were not there originally. For both powers could be detached from the minds that ruled them.” HoA, Epigraph to Chapter 55 (emphasis added). This quote is important because it is the one of the few bits of textual information we have about the Shattering in all the Cosmere novels. It is especially important because the information COMES FROM A SHARD itself (as do all of the HoA epigraphs). Sazed/Harmony may not have been a percipient witness to the Shattering, but he inherited the memories of two such witnesses, Ati and Leras. As his Consciousness became fully invested, I’m sure he learned all about the Shattering. But at the early stage of his Ascension when he made his Epigraph observations, his knowledge, while valuable, was incomplete and speculative. Thus, we have questions… Question 1: What does Sazed mean with his phrase “thoughts and personalities”? Is this the same thing as “the minds that ruled” the Powers? I think “thoughts and personalities” means something different from “the minds that ruled” the Powers. Power itself could be cut off from Conscious control and yet mindlessly function in accordance with “a vague will of its own, tied to the mandate of its abilities.” That is what happened with the mists: “[Preservation had] given up most of his consciousness to form Ruin's prison, and the mists had to be left to work as best they could without specific direction.” HoA, Epigraph to Chapter 81 (emphasis added). “The power needed a consciousness to direct it. In this matter, I am still rather confused. Why would power used to create and destroy need a mind to oversee it? And yet, it seems to have only a vague will of its own, tied in to the mandate of its abilities. Without a consciousness to direct it, nothing could actually be created or destroyed… That makes me wonder who or what the minds of Preservation and Ruin were.” HoA, Epigraph to Chapter 79 (emphasis added). I believe the “mandate of its abilities” refers to what we call “intent,” here Preservation and Ruin. These quotes make clear that the “mandate of [a Shard’s] abilities” was NOT the Shard’s “Consciousness,” since Sazed/Harmony distinguishes between this “vague will” and the Shard’s Consciousness that could direct the power. Question 2: Are “thoughts and personalities” necessary to the Powers? BEFORE the Shards’ minds “ruled” the Powers, Adonalsium’s “mind” did. And his/her/its mind did NOT have “thoughts and [a] personalit[y]” according to Sazed/Harmony. These were “not there originally,” as the first quote above makes clear. To restate my conclusion from this post, “Thoughts and personalities” are unnecessary to the exercise of the powers. Cognitively, power exercise requires only direction, not consideration or introspection. Whatever Adonalsium was had no personality. Perhaps it wasn’t ever human or even sentient (e.g., a computer-driven power)? If he/she/it did have a personality, it was so perfectly balanced as to have no discernible features.” Question 3: Where did the Shards’ “thoughts and personalities” come from? Well…if the Power didn’t initially have a personality until it attached itself to the Shards, then it must have picked up personality from the Shards themselves. This is consistent with Brandon’s comment that a Shard’s personality “’filters’” the exercise of its mandate (intent). Conclusion and Preview In a later post, I hope to detail how each Shard’s mandate affects its expression of the Powers. Here’s an early preview about Devotion (Aona) and Dominion (Skai): “Dominion and Devotion established a symbiotic relationship. Dominion created each local Selian form necessary to access investiture – the means to control that investiture. But it was Devotion’s investiture that Dominion controlled – Dominion took what Devotion willingly and selflessly gave. Example: AonDor. The Aon provides the land-based access/command mechanism (from Dominion) and the Dor is the investiture used to execute the Aon’s command (from Devotion). (Is “Dor” short for “adore”?) [And, yes, I know the Dor is purportedly a mix of the two splintered Shards. This is an early draft…] That’s it for now. As always, thanks!
  24. 1. In HoA, while Marsh is being controlled by Ruin, he reacts negatively to the notion of spiking the Misting in the town next to Tyrian (Was it Tyrian? I'm pretty sure it was.), then travel all the way to Luthadel to spike Penrod. He didn't like that it would be leaking power all that time. My question is, why? Hemalurgy is end-negative, since there is always some power lost in the process. That is very Ruin-like. But why be bothered that the spike was losing power? One would think he would be pleased to see so much of it disappear. I feel one of the attempts to explain this will be Sazed's explanation that "He knew that if he built one thing up, he could use it to knock down two others." But this opens up a broader issue. Can Ruin really ignore his intent in order to achieve his goals? It seems illogical that he would try and preserve as much power as he could, as that is in direct contrast with his intent. Also, in HoA it was revealed that Preservation couldn't suicide-bomb Ruin himself, as that went against his intent. Why is it different for Leras? 2. Does Hemalurgic power stop leaking when a subject is spiked? This seems to be the case, as Vin had her earring out for years after she was originally spiked. If it is true, why? Spiked people don't retain their stolen abilities when the spike is removed, so the power obviously went back into the spike. So why doesn't it leak? 3. Okay, so spikes made of different metals steal different abilities. But then the abilities granted also differ depending on the bind point. And hypothetically, if you wanted to steal an Allomantic ability from a Misting, then you could only take the one that they actually have. But steel simply 'steals physical Allomancy.' Does this mean that the only way to get the ability to burn pewter is to skewer a Thug with a steel spike and then insert it into only the correct bind point? So if you accidentally miss and spike the wrong spot, nothing happens? Or can you actually transmute one form of physical Allomancy into another by changing bind points? Basically, if anyone has some hidden treasure trove of Hemalurgic theory, I would like to know. 4. This last one is just guess on my part that I think is true: Zane's spike granted him increased power with steel, right? That would explain why he was able to pull off a controlled Push.
  25. For those who know, Harmony is extremely torpid, due to the shard"s" he pocess, formerly Preservation and Ruin, are of exact opposite intent. He became a new intent under the integration of those two shards. I believe we have reiterated the fact that Harmony is extremely hard to act on something, mostly relying on his agents. But have we consider or ponder on the circumstances in which Harmony might act? This might turns out to be a crucial piece of information in determing the future developments of the cosmere. First, we have to answer that whether its inactiveness is only due to its singular intent, Harmony, or due to the clashing of its two former intent. But considering from the current state of discussion, I think that the answer leans way more on the former option, if not reaching a complete verdict already. You might think that if Harmony is just Harmony but not "Preservation vs Ruin", it's more likely to act. Harmony could vanquish all crime on Scardrial and acheive balance and blahblahblah...Well, no. Harmony doesn't do much purely out of his "Harmoniousness" is pretty logical in a philosophical sense. Harmony is most oftenly tied to the Oriental Philosophy, or more specifically, Daoism. Daoism believes that balance, or harmony is achieved by following the "Dao", or in literal translation the Way. If we endeavor on balance by actions, the reactions will simply pushes us further from balance. Rashek is the epitome of why Harmony wouldn't and shouldn't act on basically anything at all. Then, if we are in favor of the theory that "Harmony doesn't act due to its eagerness in Harmony", what triggers his action and how will he work? What if someone, or someSHARD, knock things out of balance or harmony pretty badly, which is in direct conflict with Harmony's intent? Would Sazed then act? And how will he? Making wonders like he did when he restored Scadrial to its former position? Or like Endowment to just send more agents? Harmonium would be the next biggest clue to how the newly formed Shard works. Thoughts, my fellow 17th sharders? Fun idea of the day: If Honor combines with Odium, it should be named Batman. Seriously.