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Realmatic Theory, Satsuoni edition


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#1 Satsuoni

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:31 AM

So, for my 500th post I've decided to get myself together, and try to collect my theory of everything in one post. In many ways, it may intersect with Kurkistan's MEC, but I think it is different enough.
First, a disclaimer:
This theory represents my interpretation of the structure of Brandon's Cosmere. As much as possible, I tried to base it on known facts from the books and interviews, but I am not infallible. Therefore, while everybody is welcome to discuss it, and everybody if entitled to their own interpretations, my opinion may only change if the direct, factual evidence is presented that contradicts my opinion, ad not interpretation of the fact that contradicts it. In other words - I am stubborn :P .

OK, I've tried to collect some data, but that was taking too long. So without further ado:

Concept of energy
Spoiler


The three realms
Spoiler


The pathways and cycles
Spoiler


Odds and ends: positive, negative, neutral
Spoiler


Now, given the above theory, this is how I think the common magical systems in Cosmere work:
(Also, I am adding links to my old ASD again. If somebody is going to downvote them, at least post why. Keep in mind that not all ASD are up to date, but they (IMO) are still close enough)
Spoiler


So, questions? Err.. more questions?

Edited by Satsuoni, 22 December 2012 - 09:31 PM.

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#2 Kurkistan

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 11:09 AM

Interesting. I'll have to mull this one over a bit, but it makes a certain amount of sense on the face of it.

One bit of evidence you might want to throw in is that the black mist from Shardblades is linked to that which is produced by Nightblood, presumably from him destroying/dis-articulating Spiritual aspects.

EDIT: Also, sorry to put this on you, but where exactly do you disagree with my own MEC? It seems that you're more talking about mechanisms, and i see that you took up my Cognitive definition of Commands.

I don't recall saying that the three Realms were unbalanced, though I suppose by definition of mystical energy as originating from the Spiritual might disagree with yours.

Edited by Kurkistan, 22 December 2012 - 11:11 AM.

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#3 Satsuoni

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:15 PM

That might just be my misconception, but in your case there seems to be a definite direction in the interaction of the realms - from spiritual to cognitive to physical and back, while in my theory all Realms are one, in a sense - interaction in any Realm causes changes in both others, depending on the connection, and you cannot really separate pieces of the object.
I've tried to explain that concept to Nepene yesterday, but essentially, in my mind, the presence of an object in three realms is like, for example, electric, gravitic and inertial (Higgs?) presences of electron - not really separable, although distinct. (Which would make some spren WIMPs, I guess XD)
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#4 Kurkistan

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:25 PM

Probably just me being unclear/changing my mind halfway through. I think I used Physical->Cognitive->Spiritual as an example, but I recall mentioning a Cognitive->Spiritual change once. It's not so much an inequality of the Realms as it is them not being extremely tightly bound. I don't see a problem with any theoretical directionality or degree of change.

I may just be misreading you here, but you seem to be demanding immediate changes in the other two Realms as a consequence of a change in one of them. The window in TES thought of itself as a stained glass window that happened to be broken, due to its Cognitive momentum, while rightly it should have had just a "broken window" aspect, if all three of its aspects necessarily immediately affect each other.

Rioting or Soothing someone's emotions needn't have a noticeable Physical affect, discounting the brain--and the brain is a tricky subject, what with the whole "potentially doing away with the other two Realms thing" if you leave the brain as the seat of the mind.

I do have a bit of a definite direction for energy transfer between the Realms (the buck stops at the Spiritual, at least for magic).

As far as visualizations go, I suppose you're is of a solid object: move any part and you move the whole; while mine could be described (off the top of my head) as three objects tied semi-loosely together by strings: moving one will affect the others, but not necessarily immediately and not necessarily to any noticeable degree.

----

EDIT: New matter.

I do like your visualization of the cycle: constantly in motion (and thus energetic) but internal and self-sustaining. I suppose you have to include that it builds upon its own energies, at least to some degree, to explain how Breaths do a lot of stuff without running out of energy, as well as other "soulful" activity.

Edited by Kurkistan, 22 December 2012 - 10:30 PM.

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#5 Satsuoni

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:31 AM

Probably just me being unclear/changing my mind halfway through. I think I used Physical->Cognitive->Spiritual as an example, but I recall mentioning a Cognitive->Spiritual change once. It's not so much an inequality of the Realms as it is them not being extremely tightly bound. I don't see a problem with any theoretical directionality or degree of change.

Ok, I freely admit that I may have misread you. It just seemed more directional somehow.

I may just be misreading you here, but you seem to be demanding immediate changes in the other two Realms as a consequence of a change in one of them. The window in TES thought of itself as a stained glass window that happened to be broken, due to its Cognitive momentum, while rightly it should have had just a "broken window" aspect, if all three of its aspects necessarily immediately affect each other.

Rioting or Soothing someone's emotions needn't have a noticeable Physical affect, discounting the brain--and the brain is a tricky subject, what with the whole "potentially doing away with the other two Realms thing" if you leave the brain as the seat of the mind.


My quotes from above posts that are related to this matter:

This is also the realm where all object are sentient, and contains their memories - not history, but memories

interaction in any Realm causes changes in both others, depending on the connection,


And another one, from the Tales of the Goblet:

I’ve been as I am for a great long time

So, to answer your first point, yes, I posit that indeed, the initial change in one realm causes instant change in others. Brain, in this case, is an area in Physical realm that has a very high density of pathways between realms especially Cognitive-Physical. Change in brain may cause same results as Rioting/Soothing, and vice versa. Some changes in one of the realm may have little to no analogue in the others, if they are not connected.
Also, the window remembers what it was, but it is not what it was. Its memory of being a stained glass window is strong, but without the seal, it is not, currently, it. But this memory leads to it accepting changes in the history easier. I assume it works in the direction of the bad, too - if people hated its form for a long time, it found find easy to change into that form again, but I may be wrong here.

As far as visualizations go, I suppose you're is of a solid object: move any part and you move the whole; while mine could be described (off the top of my head) as three objects tied semi-loosely together by strings: moving one will affect the others, but not necessarily immediately and not necessarily to any noticeable degree.

Not exactly, since "parts" still assume separation, and in my theory, such separation signifies a drastic change in state, so that the object can't even be called what it was anymore, like Human->Ghost, and even that requires something remaining. I prefer "attributes" to "parts", like the above example of "charge, inertial mass and gravitic mass"


I do like your visualization of the cycle: constantly in motion (and thus energetic) but internal and self-sustaining. I suppose you have to include that it builds upon its own energies, at least to some degree, to explain how Breaths do a lot of stuff without running out of energy, as well as other "soulful" activity.

I may be unclear on this part, but I call it cycle precisely because it recycles expended energy, not matter where it goes on the way, unless the cycle is broken (like in case of Hema spikes and apparently Nightblood, to an extent)
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#6 Kurkistan

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:00 PM

Ok, I freely admit that I may have misread you. It just seemed more directional somehow.


Probably my fault. I focused a lot more on the power flow of magic, which I think has a pretty clear S->C->P directionality, so most of my discussion focused on that.

So, to answer your first point, yes, I posit that indeed, the initial change in one realm causes instant change in others. Brain, in this case, is an area in Physical realm that has a very high density of pathways between realms especially Cognitive-Physical. Change in brain may cause same results as Rioting/Soothing, and vice versa. Some changes in one of the realm may have little to no analogue in the others, if they are not connected.


Here's another try: Vin get's a bit more violent than usual and chops off Bob's arms. He is still the same person--still has the same memories and the same history--but his Physical form has been fundamentally altered. His Spiritual aspect is presumably a bit less diffused (no arm to Shardblade through now), but is it really different?

Also, the window remembers what it was, but it is not what it was. Its memory of being a stained glass window is strong, but without the seal, it is not, currently, it. But this memory leads to it accepting changes in the history easier. I assume it works in the direction of the bad, too - if people hated its form for a long time, it found find easy to change into that form again, but I may be wrong here.


I'm still not sure about this one. I'll mull on the nature of Forging for a bit and get back to you.

Not exactly, since "parts" still assume separation, and in my theory, such separation signifies a drastic change in state, so that the object can't even be called what it was anymore, like Human->Ghost, and even that requires something remaining. I prefer "attributes" to "parts", like the above example of "charge, inertial mass and gravitic mass"


Sorry, I think I was unclear there (I detect a pattern...). My theory is the one of parts, your's is the one with one solid object.

I may be unclear on this part, but I call it cycle precisely because it recycles expended energy, not matter where it goes on the way, unless the cycle is broken (like in case of Hema spikes and apparently Nightblood, to an extent)


Ah, sorry I misunderstood you. Fair enough. I suppose you're drawing on Brandon's "turbine" explanation for why Preservation fuels Allomancy for free?
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#7 Satsuoni

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 05:41 PM

Here's another try: Vin get's a bit more violent than usual and chops off Bob's arms. He is still the same person--still has the same memories and the same history--but his Physical form has been fundamentally altered. His Spiritual aspect is presumably a bit less diffused (no arm to Shardblade through now), but is it really different?


Plenty different - the Spiritual Life part of his body no longer has support for arms (Since the pathways of the Spiritual Physical, i. e. connections defining interaction of corpse) are gone, and cognitive is perceived differently, and hence changed. For a while (unlike in the case Shardblade is used), the "soul", the life patterns corresponding to "having arms" will persist, and hence the body would be able to be healed (by gold), but without support, it will eventually weaken and fade, Cognitive part changing to match (arms? what arms? I guess I used to have the, once).


I'm still not sure about this one. I'll mull on the nature of Forging for a bit and get back to you.

OK


Ah, sorry I misunderstood you. Fair enough. I suppose you're drawing on Brandon's "turbine" explanation for why Preservation fuels Allomancy for free?

Weirdly enough, this part of the theory was formulated long before Q&A (since it seemed so obvious), but that was a nice conformation, yes.
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#8 Kurkistan

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 10:32 PM

Plenty different - the Spiritual Life part of his body no longer has support for arms (Since the pathways of the Spiritual Physical, i. e. connections defining interaction of corpse) are gone, and cognitive is perceived differently, and hence changed. For a while (unlike in the case Shardblade is used), the "soul", the life patterns corresponding to "having arms" will persist, and hence the body would be able to be healed (by gold), but without support, it will eventually weaken and fade, Cognitive part changing to match (arms? what arms? I guess I used to have the, once).


Healing is quite obviously carried out in accordance with Cognitive aspects. And that's the thing, really. The Spiritual aspect needn't change when the body does--you're still you even if you're missing a piece or two--and really, it shouldn't. The Spiritual aspect, as far as I can tell, is the traditional soul, what makes a person who they are at a foundamental level. The emperor's soul (hur hur) is composed of his personality and important memories; it's not based on the form of his body.

Resealing opens up questions, I'll admit. Hopefully I'll address them when my brain starts working again.

Think of it this way: some parts of the spiritweb are located in the extremities. Vin and Wax's spikes are earrings. Do you really think that that part of a person's Spiritual aspect would just go away if the extremity were separated? Or would it simply become inaccessible or possibly "contract" into another location?

EDIT: In either of the "part of your soul isn't chopped off in your ear" explanations, the Spiritual aspect isn't really changing, it's just that its Physical interface has been altered.

Edited by Kurkistan, 23 December 2012 - 11:04 PM.

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#9 Satsuoni

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 08:05 AM

Ok, to answer you.
First, I was a little bit mistaken in my OP.
Here is the quote:

Therefore the presence of the physical object consists of its molecular and atomic bonds, as well as the connections between it and other objects, like gravity, EM, etc. Some bonds are reinforced naturally by both sides, and therefore regenerate (like gravity). Some do not.
Living objects are much more complex, and also contain a "soul" which gives not only additional connections to Cognitive and Physical realms, but also additional ties to other living objects

With the bolded text being an addition. In other words, the part that changes is not your soul - unless you were cut by shardblade - but your body's connection collection. So you lose access to the soul from the physical realm -you can't cut off part with shardblade my waving it over stump (I hope...) Whether the bind points are lost or migrate somewhere else over time, I don't know.
Yet when cut with Shardblade, it is part of your soul that is cut off, and the physical part then leak life and becomes dead, though physically whole.

Also, yes, the Cognitive healing does make more sense, although does not really explain aging - what if you continue to see yourself as young and live as hermit? Will you stop aging then? But that is an aside.
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#10 Kurkistan

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 10:30 AM

Ah, that makes much more sense.

I'm actually beginnning to doubt whether Shardblades are damaging Spiritual aspects when they "sever" limbs. There's no talk of "scaring their victims on a fundamental level" or anything for people who are just partially paralyzed. We also only see the "black smoke of soul-death" when the spine is cut through, but not for the limbs.

What if, instead of "killing" part of the Spiritual aspect when a limb is cut through, all the Shardblade does is sever it's connection to the Cognitive aspect (i.e., you'r ability to perceive or control the limb)? So I suppose the question we should ask is "could someone benefit from a Hemalurgic spike placed in a limb which had been 'severed' with a Shardblade?"

That's just a possibility, though.

As far as Healing goes, I suspect that people are being a bit too loosey-goosey with with the "how an object is viewed and how it views itself" definition of the Cognitive Realm. It's almost certainly a more metaphysical "view," and a fairly robust one at that--TLR was perceived by most as an inherently immortal god, perhaps by everyone but himself as such, and yet the Human Form's age-restriction was still present.

I suspect, then, that Cognitive restrictions on fundamental things (such as what it is to be Human, to be a Window, etc.) are defined on a population, perhaps even Cosmere-wide level, and simply accessed by individuals, while more personal things such as state of health have a bit more freedom.

Edited by Kurkistan, 24 December 2012 - 10:44 AM.

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#11 Satsuoni

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 08:37 PM

Ah, that makes much more sense.

I'm actually beginnning to doubt whether Shardblades are damaging Spiritual aspects when they "sever" limbs. There's no talk of "scaring their victims on a fundamental level" or anything for people who are just partially paralyzed. We also only see the "black smoke of soul-death" when the spine is cut through, but not for the limbs.

What if, instead of "killing" part of the Spiritual aspect when a limb is cut through, all the Shardblade does is sever it's connection to the Cognitive aspect (i.e., you'r ability to perceive or control the limb)? So I suppose the question we should ask is "could someone benefit from a Hemalurgic spike placed in a limb which had been 'severed' with a Shardblade?"


Well, I for one would argue for consistency - the eyes are the only part of CNS outside the body, and located right next to the greatest concentration of Realm-spanning pathways, so even if the nerves in the limbs were to burn up and emit "smoke", we probably won't see it, and there would be much less that from the brain, anyways. The truth is, we don't know much about partial wounds like that in long term. Is the limb alive enough to not rot or shrivel over time? Is the cutoff point exactly where the blade passed or does it propagate back, like in case of spine, but lacking the energy to sustain destructive reaction? We don't know, since in the book everybody cut by the blade was quickly killed off afterwards (IIRC) They did say "a limb", so did they mean the whole limb was inactivated at once? Could Shardblade be used by the dentist to stop my teeth from hurting by carefully slicing through their bases? That said, obviously Shardblades are much more evil and destructive than Hemalurgy, since you can't make Cat Inquisitors with it.


As far as Healing goes, I suspect that people are being a bit too loosey-goosey with with the "how an object is viewed and how it views itself" definition of the Cognitive Realm. It's almost certainly a more metaphysical "view," and a fairly robust one at that--TLR was perceived by most as an inherently immortal god, perhaps by everyone but himself as such, and yet the Human Form's age-restriction was still present.

I suspect, then, that Cognitive restrictions on fundamental things (such as what it is to be Human, to be a Window, etc.) are defined on a population, perhaps even Cosmere-wide level, and simply accessed by individuals, while more personal things such as state of health have a bit more freedom.

Maybe... I still suspect some interaction with Spiritual. Perhaps they act in combination for this.
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#12 Kurkistan

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 09:53 PM

The Shardblade stuff is still speculation, I agree. We really need more evidence.

As far as Spiritual interactions with Healing, I would hazard that Spiritual "Forms" (like the spiritual idea of a "window") come into play, probably in guiding and restricting individual Cognitive aspects.
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#13 Nepene

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 03:20 AM

That said, obviously Shardblades are much more evil and destructive than Hemalurgy, since you can't make Cat Inquisitors with it.


You can steal shardblades to enhance cat inquisitors.

Brandon said that there would be some scene that would please cosmere aware people at the end of Stormlight 2. I personally am hoping for a battle between Hoid and the seventeenth shard where we would get to see different magic systems interact. That would give us some more data to see if your theory is accurate.

For example, could a shardblade cut steelsight?
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#14 Satsuoni

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 08:38 AM

Well, you could steal it with Hemalurgy, but this seems to be one of the few cases when using Hemalurgy is not the answer. If you can spike a shardbearer, you could probably just kll one, and bind the blade without using up bind points. If the bearer is your friend, he/she could just be talked into gibing the blade up...
And I doubt Shardblade can cut Steelsight, not unless it can cut gravity. Although it may serve as an obstacle to Steelsight. The better question might be, what does the blade (either drawn or hidden) look like in steelsight? Maybe you can pick up shardblade user by using it.
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#15 Observer

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 03:51 PM

Since Brandon said a Shardblade can't be pushed on, I doubt it would even be visible. However, much like things in the body, it might actually create a little bubble of anti-steel, allowing you to track the blade via the vanishing and appearing lines
I can see what you see not
Vision milky, then eyes rot
When you turn they will be gone
Whispering their hidden song
Then you see what cannot be
Shadows move where light should be
Out of darkness, out of mind
Cast down to the Halls of the Blind...
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