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Karger last won the day on August 31 2020

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About Karger

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    Idealist and Theory Collector

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  1. Define die. The fused can just will themselves to leave their bodies and the Heralds can probably manage the same trick or a similar one. I personally think they meet up again for a post battle report and analysis. It might be a good idea for them to stick around for a while and reintroduce some concepts like sanitation depending on what type of damage the humans took. Of course that does risk the more depressing thought of the Heralds all willingly teleporting to torture world after spending a few days celebrating/commiserating with the victorious humans. I actually covered that in my theory if you are interested. I even have a few ideas about why Nale and Ishar acted the way they did but they would derail your thread.
  2. The odds of a civilian attempting to fight Szeth are pretty low. No matter her surgebinding Shallan was not combat capable and would have been evacuated from any area that Szeth was in immediately. Dalinar saw nine honorblades in vision. Given he has seen Amaram's on at least two occasions and no two are alike he would have recognized it if it belonged to Shallash.
  3. In that case sure. The voidbinding you are referring to may actually be one of the best proofs of my theory there is. On Roshar humans and singers have come to believe in the ten surges. On Braize however there are no humans or singers, only the fused. On that planet they only believe in nine surges and "acts of Odium" so their magic system took form that way(a what could have been if humans thought differently). What we are seeing with Renarin is the two magic systems colliding. Odium's tone has become part of roshar and the fused still consider themselves a part of the planet so they are importing their own variant. A derivative magic system you might say.
  4. Winces. I am not convinced we have ever seen any voidbinding at all so I really don't have anything to go on here. Since we know absolutely nothing about voidbinding I really don't have anything concrete. Also because of the several ways it is used I am not 100% sure what exactly you are referring to when you say "voidbinding."
  5. Exactly. Another theme is the re contextualizing of memories. Kaladin seeing loss and pain rather then heroism in his brother's actions or Dalinar seeing his treatment of Evi as purely as an example of how terrible he was rather then accepting how large an effect she had on him. In Ba-Ado-Mishram's case unmaking her would be like taking an idea that is important to communal identity, say patriotism, and turning it into something hateful out of spite or a sense of grievance, a la the confederate flag. It is also a rather chilling example of what Odium does. The singers became so deeply connected to Ba-Ado-Mishram that when it was gone there was nothing left of them.
  6. Welcome to the shard. I actually had an entire spin off theory about Ba-Ado-Mishram and what the Heralds were trying to do but I did not make that particular connection. It would make a lot of sense though. An old theory that has been nattering around in the back of my head is that Ba-Ado-Mishram was originally the spren of poetry and culture before her unmaking(that comes from translating the name as "child of the light of mishrim" with mishrim being the clever and tricky moon known to inspire poets with her faint violet light in the evenings). The loss of the singer traditions would have been like loosing childhood memories during a traumatic experience.
  7. Thanks for picking up on that. I was not trying to imply that Ishar made the ideals. More that he made it so that the oaths had to be sworn to enhance the connection between spren and radiant. Before progress for a windrunner might be dependent on how honorable you were feeling(how much your emotions were in line with your spren's intent) but after it was about a clearly stated interpretation of that idealized honor. Am I making sense?
  8. Introduction Roshar is one of the most complex and interesting fantasy worlds ever built. This has of course led to quite a lot of theorizing especially on the magic system and history. Despite the fact that we do not yet have enough information(we are still waiting on another six books) I have decided to embrace my inner Taravangian and solve everything using conjecture. What could go wrong? I have often wondered what would happen if you stuck multiple Taravangians in the same room so feel free to join me. Clearly only I have the intelligence to solve these problems! ONLY I KARGER CAN SAVE US FROM IGNORANCE! Basics Be enlightened o ignorant reader. I shall cast aside the weight of ignorance that blinds your eyes to this strange world's history. Critical to the understanding of rosharan magic is the surges and the spren. Those methods used by the radiants to command nature itself. What are they and how do how do they work? Why do we speak of binding them? Who did the binding? How are the different forms of binding different? Are other types of binding possible? Where do the spren factor in? Where do they come from? What can they actually do? Why do they grant these surges specifically? All of these are among the most common questions we ask in our struggle to understand this strange world. To recap we know the following: Radiants are surgebinders. Each radiant can effectively bind two surges. Rosharans refer to the surges as if they are fundamental forces. To be clear one can explain all natural phenomena using just the surges even in our world if they really wanted to we just don't because we don't find doing so a good use of our time. Spren are heavily connected to the surges because that is the way human express the idea of something happening physically. The spren, surges, and their relationships are not static. They have clearly changed over time and we even know the method. Groundwork To actually start this theory off lets go back to the beginning of Words of Radiance and see what a cognitive entity thinks of natural law. Jesting aside it seems that to a cognitive entity natraul law is like a social convention. Something usually done for the sake of convenience rather then a strict rule that must be followed. If Syl does not particularly want things with mass to be attracted then they don't have to be. If Pattern wishes for an object to appear differently then it behaves then that can happen too. Fortunately for Rosharan mortals spren are limited in both their imaginations and in how much they can effect the physical realm. If this were to change it could certainly become cause for alarm. Theory The central tenet to this diagram that absolutely must be understood is that the rules for magic on Roshar has undergone massive changes over millennia. Initially these rules were maintained by adonalsium but they progressed along with the beings in the physical realm. How people saw the spren and what people did the seeing are what changed the the magic system into what it is today. Unlike say allomancy where a given power is the same even if you find a new application for it Roshar's magic itself changes depending on rules that are both arbitrary and alterable. Given recent developments we can even speculate about a new magic system emerging. The First of Roshar's Arcana We don't know what his original restrictions were(although this WoB indicates they were somewhat limiting) but we do know that when he created the singers Adonalsium had a particular role in mind for the world and he including the singers when making it. Regardless of the system's overall purpose the role in mind for the singers seems fairly straightforward. They always call themselves listeners or singers throughout the entirety of their history, have a special relationship with the spren both biological and cultural, and a rich history of storytelling(the last legion got the idea for the old songs from somewhere). According to Pattern spren might not even exist without people thinking about them(WoR). From this it seems reasonable to conclude that the singers were put on Roshar to create and maintain the spren. We know from our singer PoVs that bonding a spren requires one to be in the right mindset to attract and bond one. As an interesting side note this roughly parallels animistic beliefs across human civilizations. I am hardly an expert but from what I have read, finding a common understanding the various spirits(or spren if you are rosharan) is an important part of the religions that basically all humans practiced at some point and many still do. Perhaps even more interesting is that the earliest political entities where generally founded by individuals who managed to obtain special relationships with one or more very powerful spirits similar to what the singers did when building their cities or other great works. A more contemporary example might be found in Rock's tale of the horneater founding. The exact manner that the spren came up with for creating the peaks is unclear and unimportant. On the human side only the manner of approaching and convincing the spren to help mattered. If this is true it might explain why Raboneill considers surges more of a human import when talking with Venli. The singers probably didn't care much about how the spren did things or the surges in general. It was enough that they did do things when asked the right way. The singer's probably saw their magic more as a business, religious, or political effort then a scientific one and the spren themselves would have responded to this. Assuming they lived up to their name and sang the spren histories rather create written records then the spren would have been more distant and more flexible in their behavior at least until the humans arrived. In summary Roshar's original magic could be described in two simple sentences. Form a connection with spren and let them do their thing. Here is a list of the spren and some ways for approaching them and guiding their work. How the Humans Changed Everything(From Arrival to Desolation) The exact nature of Ishar's experiments with the surges are too limited for us to even really speculate on them but we are all aware of how awful their result was. Odium tempted a clever theorist into creating, discovering, or rediscovering the surges. Ishar must have found some way to bind the surges and in so doing he probably made the surges themselves into something similar to their modern form. Refugees from Ashyn may have only been seeking a safe haven their stay on roshar had lasting impacts. Perhaps the most important thing about this society though was that it had a terrifying weapon with it. Given the contents of Heraldic wisdom it is positive that the Ashynites had a fairly high literacy rate. The effects of having a large number of people record facts about the spren have now been rediscovered in a less dramatic fashion by Geranid and Ashir Back then humans would unknowingly, perhaps later knowingly, cause havoc in singer society just by keeping records. Spren attitudes must have shifted remarkably in a fairly short amount of time as their vague notions turned into concrete memories and humans became the dominant force for recording their doings and recognizing their deeds. Where before flamespren might have been either destructive or constructive now they might exhibit only one or the other as soon as some scribe wrote down a quick essay on their behavior. Honorspren and Stonespren might have been different cultures or groups of spren that humans mistook as different races. The once benevolent stormfather who provided life and health would suddenly have become more capricious and angry when viewed and recorded by humans who did not understand his role in the world. Spren histories, politics, and individual thought must have skyrocketed. It is easy to understand why spren might have been attracted to definite self knowledge and why singers saw this as a kind of betrayal. Humans could provide the spren with more then the singers could and many of the less steadfast spren would have quickly changed to be more pro human. Singers live in a catch 22. They cannot reach their full potential without bonding a spren but doing so restricts their interests and abilities to the spren already bonded. This is just not enough for a nahal bond. An old question for us theory types is what form Venli would get if she used Timbre in her gemheart. It is possible that no one knows. It could be the singers have never been able to adopt a mindset for it. If they are not smart enough in dullform and the emotions needed are too varied for an ordinary form to act as an intermediate then they might not be able to use a spren like that at all. I am not saying that sapiant spren and singers never bonded but I don't think it ever reached the level of connection for a form change to take place. Being angry or wanting to help carry a burden is one thing but Honor or Law is way harder to intuit. The Fused Regardless of their cause the desolations only got as bad as they did because the singers went to Odium. The singers that would become the fused became cognitive shadows by using Odium's power. Brandon has explained becoming a CS fairly clearly on several occasions so I won't here. The important point is that as fused their abilities would function differently based on what was known about them. Cognitive shadows cannot help but be influenced by the thoughts of those around them and Odium would have cared more for military utility then having ten(or nine) spesific powers. The stormfather made an odd remark at the beginning of OB claiming that the fused were dangerous "before they learned to command the surges." His statement may be general but it also might point to the fused only having their powers "nailed down" by experimentation and experience. Before they had more general powers not tied particularly well to any spesific surge. The Shanay-im are clearly designed to fly, the Nex-im clearly built to kill suddenly while unarmed, and the carapace of the Magnified Ones cannot be a coincidence but until it was decided by everyone that the fused follow the nine different surges one surge per order it would not have been true. Shanay-im might initially have had powers that worked a bit more like Peter Pan but one day found out about lashings. This also explains how some fused abilities are so spesific to the point where their are several possible surges as candidates. Odium would have wanted groups of soldiers that could fulfill spesific roles(scouts, tanks, supports, and so on). The people at the time would categorize the fused based on what they knew and would have named their abilities after spesific surges. The fused would then find their powers working more in line with what the surges predict. A random point The Oathpact Putting aside their surgebinding the biggest problem with the fused is no one can permanently kill them. This give the humans at the time a problem. How do you kill an idea? Since antilight had not been invented yet the oathpact was seen as the best solution. Trapping the fused indefinitely in a place where they can do no harm. The fused may be seen as spren of the people they once were. The idea of people who really hate humans. To trap them on Braize the Heralds needed another idea, the oathpact, that could keep them there. If you know that something wants to kill you you need to know hat something is stopping them from doing so in order to feel that they are not a threat. Ishar's solution was to turn the ten best people he knew into spren. It is a bit difficult to get your head around but the oathpact works by making the fused and the Heralds unable to think they can leave their prison. The fused are the idea of those who hate humans and the Heralds are the idea of those who prevent them from acting on their hate. Should any Herald stop thinking of themselves that way the oathpact will falter and the fused begin to cross back. The heralds were able to shift the oathpact onto Taln by essentially thinking "it is his problem/burden not mine." As long as Taln believed for example that "he had to hold out until the others joined him" then the fused would have to get him to yield even if "until" never happened. Radiants and Surgebinding The oathpact of course had an unforeseen weakness. It only functioned as long as the Heralds could keep believing in it. If that belief stops for just a moment then the oathpact is undermined and the fused can escape causing a desolation. The Heralds could access the surges using their connection to Honor. (Anyone deeply connected enough to a magic system's shard will usually gain access to that magic system.) Honor's magic system was/became(the causality in this is as annoying as spirit realm logic since it kind of works circularly) the surges so the Heralds were connected to surgebinding. Since the Heralds shared their connection to Honor it became/was that the surges were shared between them. We know from WoR that Spren imitated Honor by connecting themselves to humans. The first spren bonds were made without oaths and had very vaguely defined limitations. The following analogy is highly flawed but it might make sense to consider these early spren bonds similar to early romantic relationships. No one involved entirely knows what they are doing, what does and does not work seems temperamental, and results both good and bad are so circumstantial as to defy anyone's ability to follow them. Over time various surgebinders must have figured out some rules, through trial and error at least, but to continue the analogy not everyone learns the right lessons. Some of the spren bonds clearly developed in ways that were ethically problematic or had dangerous implications as we know from Nohadon's vision. Enter a bondsmith (or possibly bondsmiths). Oath and Orders People found surgebinding concerning. Because of this a Bondsmith needed to set spesific limits on the power. Thus they created the oaths and orders that all radiants now abide by. It now makes sense to abandon our earlier analogy about relationships and change it to one about legal development. The oaths are like a legal code or constitution. Their intended purpose is to regulate or limit power but at the same time they allow people to express it more precisely. In a constitutional democracy a president or prime minister has a great deal of limitations on their authority. At the same time they also have spesific powers that allow them to take unpopular actions without consultation or repercussions the same way a monarch might. For example firing a minister has actually spelled an effective end for more then a few kings. It lost them important supporters among the aristocracy or civil service but a US president may oust a cabinet head without consequence or meaningful objection. Where once spren powers were finicky and context dependent one could now have organized understanding of what powers they had, how to gain more, and what those powers would be. At the same time receiving greater power meant agreeing to binding restrictions. The most powerful radiants would also be the ones who had the hardest time acting based solely on personal motives. It seems likely this process was amended more then once to greater or lessor degrees. The in world WoR indicates that Ishar set up the original oaths and knights. His goals, influenced by past mistakes, would have been aimed at restraining the damage radiants could do. The original rules he set up with Honor probably included limiting adhesion and clearly delineating the orders and power sets. Adhesion allows one to connect to thing and even mess with the nature of bonds themselves. Ishar probably wanted to stop anyone from remaking the magic system and rending any other changes moot. Clearly delineating orders and powers reduces the amount of uncertainty and gives the Heralds people who cultivated different skills in upcoming desolations. I personally think a later bondsmith(perhaps Nohadon himself) made later changes on a smaller scale(like a constitutional amendment): Making spren bonds consensual. This change was likely required to keep spren on the human side of the war. Spren are not perfect and might end up bonding someone they regret. However the stormfather must accept oaths.to make them valid. If a human were to swear an oath technically in keeping with their radiant ideals that went against the will of the spren then the stormfather might be able to refuse the oath and identify the surgebinder speaking it. This would explain why the stormfather still holds the king in such high esteem and why the sibling accepted radiant bonds but is so horrified by fabrails. The Old Magic Cultivation is confirmed to have her own magic system witch we have seen and is related to the old magic. The rules and nature of this magic system are unknown. The name itself though is a clue. Roshar had a large number of magical phenomena and not all of them fit in well with the ten surges. The old magic is not magic that predates surgebinding but rather the magic stuff that the surgebinding model was unable to work with and so with Cultivations influence grew into its own thing. This is pure speculation but I wonder what happens to spren dead. It might be a rare occurrence among the most powerful and intelligent spren but if a flamespren were to vanish there is literally no way to know since they are all identical. I think the old magic revolves around consuming spren rather then bonding them. Doing so may alter your SDNA as the spren is consumed(this is similar to hemalurgy in the same way that eating is to organ transplanting). I think this is how Lift digests food into free investiture. She matches the food's cognitive aspect to her own and then uses her own innate investiture to change the food's spiritual aspect to hers. By the law of investiture conservation the food cannot simply vanish so instead it turns into pure investiture that she can use through her bond. Her boon was a quantity of investiture she can use to jump start this reaction. A Future Magic System Since the past diagram was apparently not enough I decided to create a new rosharan magic system. Navani recently ran up against ethical problems with fabrails. Basically the sibling is not OK with spren being forcibly trapped in the physical realm indefinitely. However given the amount of trouble humans have getting the spren to behave as they want(not to mention trapping them in the first place) wouldn't it be nice if both sides were to just work out an agreement? I imagine in the future a set of rules could be worked out by a bondsmith(say Navani) governing the proper methods for summoning a spren and putting it to work. Perhaps making a spanreed in the future involves humming the right tune(rhythm of the flames) above a candle while holding a ruby filled with stormlight with an agreement written out in metallic inc for any flamespren that is interested. A simplified spren language could even be develped for this exact purpose. Conclusion Writing this out was kind of exhausting and I actually deliberatly avoiding going down several tangent threads. I am more then happy to explain, discuss, amend, correct, or debate any portion of the theory with those who are both interested and actually took the time to read all that. It has been to long since I had a full shard discussion.
  9. Not really. That theory only works if Taravangian is willing to stay away from all humans forever and I seriously doubt he would be willing to do that.
  10. The idea is that Dalinar would just pin the kid and then ask around for advice. He can check with the Stormfather to see if he is cheating but I don't see how that would count. Before you said willing cooperation and that is not what you are saying here. I really don't see how a broken Dalinar would be particularly useful. Doesn't Dalinar's importance come from the fact that he wouldn't break? You can check the WoBs if you need to but even Sazed who is not influenced by the powers due to their balancing, was a highly scrupulous, and a strong willed individual has trouble controlling his shards. There is a reason we call them vessels. They control you as much or more then you control them. Taravangian is guiding the power more then controlling it. Why not instead reveal himself to Dalinar and say that he will forfeit the match in exchange for whatever he wants Dalinar to do? Also isn't that a contradiction? TOdium looses the match as of Dalinar killing Gavinor and neither of them could really do anything about it at that point. The real problem with all champion theories is that we don't really know what TOdium wants so speculating on how he is trying to get it is pretty difficult.
  11. This interpretation actually does work to address most of my concerns with the theory. I may not like it personally but it works. On the other hand it does have a few problems. If TOdium wants to loose can't he choose a better way to throw the match. How about just forfeiting by not showing up? A child still cannot present any real threat to Dalinar. Since no length of time for the contest is specified it effectively lets Dalinar just pin Gavinor and find a way to win on a technicality(turn Gav into a CS for example) Odium itself is not necessarily under Taravangian's control whatever Cultivation says so expecting him to want to loose is a bit odd. If Taravangian thinks he can get Dalinar's willing cooperation then wouldn't a better strategy be to approach him more openly? It would be considerably easier and given how Dalinar hates subterfuge it might even be more likely to work. None of these are insurmountable problems if Brandon decides he wants to go this way but they are certainly issues he would have to work around.
  12. He said discerning actually. Honorspren like Syl may be odd but they are actually pretty good at keeping abreast of human feelings and asking the right questions about them. As we have seen with some of Pattern's actions Cryptics are not nearly as good in that department.
  13. Windrunners. Likely to play a tank or support class. Probably brought in by a friend. Will be committed to letting everyone enjoy themselves. Skybreakers. Watch these guys for min maxing and rules lawyering. Will treat the game like a competitive sport. Dustbringers. Glass cannon or front line fighter. Watch these ones for burning themselves out or drawing the party into conflicts needlessly. Edgedancer. There is always one in the group. Will generally play healer or bard. Will spend as much time as possible taking in or interacting with companion creatures and other freinds. Truthwatcher. Cooperative and interested in the game. Will likely focus on exploration and information gathering. Lightweaver. Takes their character to its logical extreme. They will also probably start off giving their character a personality that is fairly extreme to begin with. Elsecaller. Also a potential min maxer. Will spend every waking moment outsmarting the DM or powering through the plot. Willshaper. Similar in some respects to the Edgedancer and Truthwatcher but will instead try and "break the game" by forcing the DM into paradoxical ruling. Stoneward. Same as Windrunner but less likely to play as a spellacaster. Bondsmith. Will try and keep the players in line. Additionally they are likely to add NPCs as party members. This is my read anyway.
  14. More like experience actually. Generally the most cooperative group is probably one made of Truthwatchers but you will find that Lightweaver's are the most enthusiastic. Staaaaaaaaaaaaaaaares. Are you my DM?
  15. If you have rollplayed then you might have encountered people who really can't get into the mindset and people who go overboard. The later quality is a good indication of a Lightweaver aptitude.