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Everything posted by Confused

  1. Isn't Brandon just describing a perpendicularity? Also, I may be the only one here who believes the cosmere violates its own thermodynamic laws. Everything Brandon says suggests Spiritual Realm Investiture that's not part of a Spiritweb (Shard power) is infinitely renewable. But that would make the cosmere a perpetual motion machine, contrary to thermodynamics' second law. It's certainly possible in a magical universe, but Brandon so often emphasizes thermodynamics that I can't convince myself he intends a perpetually renewable cosmere. Which makes me think the Adonalsium-related "4th law" goes something like this: All Investiture is renewable EXCEPT Shard power. Matter, energy and other forms of Investiture remain mutually inter-convertible, but they cannot convert back into power. Reason: Shard power is actually Adonalsium's Spiritual Realm corpse. Once power converts into something else, that's it - those things can change back-and-forth into one another, but you can't resurrect Adonalsium. With this wrinkle, all the WoBs still work, but the cosmere will eventually reach entropic equilibrium. Otherwise it won't. I want to say again, I have no evidence for my view other than logic. Even that logic is defeated by hand-waving that "it's magic." So don't bother to disagree - I already know you all do, and I have nothing to rebut your contrary view. This particular issue is just a simmering irritation to my OCD nature...
  2. I think the Everstorm brings Voidlight to Roshar. Just as Stormlight enables bonds and “makes things grow,” Voidlight IMO breaks bonds. Voidlight frees the Parshmen, but only Stormlight enables them to bond again. IIRC, @Calderis theorizes Melishi stripped out part of the Parshmen Spiritwebs, putting them into slaveform. He suggests the Everstorm causes the stripped-out part to regrow. I think the opposite is true, that Bondsmiths can make bonds but not break them. I think Melishi bonded Parshmen with a blank pseudo-spren to turn them into slaves. The Everstorm’s Voidlight breaks the bond with the pseudo-spren, rather than regrowing Parshmen Spiritwebs. I think Parshmen exposed to the Everstorm return to their natural sapient state. Parshmen still need Stormlight to bond with spren. Kaladin’s companions may not yet have been exposed to Stormlight and may be unbonded. I think Voidbringing changes the Spiritual DNA of the spren Parshmen (and other lifeforms/objects) bond with. We’ll see how Kaladin’s companions act when exposed to Stormlight. Some of them may bond corrupted spren; some of them may not bond at all; and some may bond uncorrupted spren. The yellow spren IMO is a Voidbinding spren, Odium’s version of a Radiantspren. Such spren are not necessarily evil, since the Shards themselves are not evil. Some Voidbinding spren may be cruel, just as some Radiantspren are. The difference between spren is magical – how they perform magic – not moral. This yellow spren does not appear evil (so far). I believe Voidbinders use the same Surges as Surgebinders, but Voidbinders access the Surges by breaking the internal bonds that make them who they are. I think the Unmade are “unmade” because using Odium’s magic over time reduces Voidbinders and their Spiritwebs. Voidbinders IMO catalyze their magic by consuming Voidlight to break their bonds. Hate gives you power, but you pay a price. Becoming “unmade” – having hate consume you – is Odium’s price for his power. The yellow spren sees Kaladin as a Voidbinding candidate. I suspect it notices Kaladin’s “protecting” character. The yellow spren itself first warned of Kaladin’s presence, a form of protection, and seems to be marshalling the Parshmen towards their rendezvous. I think the yellow spren is Odium’s version of honorspren – “protecting spren” - even if it does turn out to be a Shinovar stone spren. That may explain Syl’s ambivalence towards it. Just some thoughts before tomorrow’s chapters blow them apart…
  3. Khriss refers to current Rosharan magic as an “expansion” of its pre-Shattering magic. I believe humans couldn’t bond pre-Shattering spren – because “Listeners are more aware of the Cognitive Realm than humans.” I think the Chapter 32 Epigraph refers to Radiantspren when it says, “the smartest spren.” IMO, Cultivation’s power combines two pre-Shattering spren to make human-bondable Radiantspren. "Cultivation" to me connotes changing something for human use. Honor supplies the Nahel bond – formed by human promises (the oaths) to uphold ideals. I suspect listeners don’t bond Radiantspren because of the oaths. Listener forms are communal, shared. Radiantspren seek individuals with specific temperaments. Eshonai the Explorer is unique among the listeners (AFAIK). She fits Willshaper temperament – “love of adventure, novelty, or oddity.” “Why now?” is an interesting question. Since Surgebinding is based on Honorblades, maybe Radiantspren can sense a new Desolation like Heralds can? They live in the Cognitive Realm - maybe Radiantspren can see Desolation coming before humans can? Maybe they come to warn humans? Or maybe Cultivation foresees a new Desolation and stirs Radiantspren to action? An interesting question…
  4. Brandon says Roshar has three magic systems, plus the “weird” Old Magic. I think Voidbringing is a fifth Rosharan magic system. This post explores how I believe each magic system works. Quick background: Forum consensus agrees there are at least three magic system components: “Fuel” (Investiture that causes the magic), “Focus” (a component that determines the power available for magic), and “Magic User” (the person who directs the magic). I think there’s a fourth component, “Catalyst,” which Khriss describes as a substance Magic Users consume to cause Shard power to Invest them. (BoM Ars Arcanum - Allomancy.) Catalysts, IMO, make the Magic User an Invested object capable of directing the Invested power. I believe there are three types of magic systems, all of which are found on Roshar. “Interaction with nature” systems use Fuel and a means to Focus power. In “people with magic” systems, Magic Users can direct the magic. Some“people with magic” systems use a Catalyst to access power, and some don’t. IMO, these are the Rosharan Shards’ Mandates (intents): Honor makes bonds, Cultivation makes change, and Odium breaks bonds. I think every Rosharan Magic User, mortal or voidish, uses the same powers, what Rosharans call Surges. Shard Mandates determine how Magic Users use the powers. Background done. Here are the systems, starting with the ones we know best. Surgebinding (Catalytic system) The Magic User is the Surgebinder. I agree with those who think spren are Roshar’s Focus. (Some posters think Roshar’s bonds are its Focus.) I believe Radiantspren’s mixed Investitures make them dual Focuses. IMO, Honor and/or Cultivation’s power is Surgebinding’s Fuel. Surgebinders consume Stormlight as their Catalyst to cause power to Invest them. The Radiantspren as Focus determine which power Invests the Surgebinder. I think the Surgebinder “binds” the Surges by directing the Invested power to create the magical effect – choosing gravity’s vector or drawing a new persona. Fabrials (Catalytic “people with magic” system) The fabrial user turns the fabrial on and off, and IMO is the Magic User. I think the gem-captured spren is the Focus. IMO, the gemstone filters Stormlight to replicate the symbiotic conditions of a gemheart. Spren consume the Stormlight and Focus their power on the machine they think is a lifeform. The spren-Focused power animates the machine for the desired magical effect. Shard power is the Fuel, and Stormlight is the Catalyst. Voidbinding (Catalytic “people with magic” system) I theorize Voidbinding is Odium’s form of Surgebinding. Because Surgebinding needs the Nahel bond to bind Surges, I speculate Voidbinding breaks bonds to bind the Surges. I think Voidbinding binds the same Surges as Surgebinding, except the Bondsmith Surges (or maybe just the Bondsmith’s “perks”). I think Voidbinding is a Catalytic system. I speculate the Nine Unmade combine two Voidbinding abilities like Heralds (other than the Bondsmith). “Void Knights” (if they exist) would have their patron Unmade’s abilities, like KR. The Unmade and any Void Knights would be Magic Users, voidspren would be the Focus, “Voidlight” the Catalyst, and Odium’s power the Fuel. If Odium’s power breaks bonds, then Voidlight IMO destroys matter. Only bondless bits remain – a Void of unreflected light. I think Voidlight’s Spiritual energy shows in Gavilar’s sphere, but nothing else, not even the spren it contains. I suggest an “Ever-Stormfather” Focuses Odium’s power into Voidlight, like the Stormfather Focuses Honor’s power (IMO) into Stormlight. Voidbringing (Non-Catalytic “people with magic” system) I believe Odium Investiture in voidspren form invades other spren like a virus. The “virus” voidspren replaces the target spren’s Spiritual DNA. Odium can then change and control the target spren’s host. I think Voidbringing most resembles Hemalurgy. Hemalurgy’s power to transfer innate Investiture Invests the metal spike. Voidspren, to me, equate to Hemalurgical spikes. Odium Invests each voidspren with the power to replace the target spren’s Investiture with its own. That power IMO is Voidbringing’s Fuel. Like spren in Roshar’s other magic systems, voidspren are Voidbringing’s Focus. I believe Hemalurgy and Voidbringing are non-Catalytic systems because power Invests the spike/voidspren, not the Magic User. Until stormspren summon the Ever-Stormfather, IMO Odium’s power can’t be Focused into Voidlight. Hence, Voidbringing can work without a Catalyst. Sja-anat (mentioned in Dalinar’s Purelake vision) seems able to direct Voidbringing. If so, Sja-anat is a Magic User. We don’t know if a Void Knight Order supports Sja-Anat or if other Unmade can Voidbring. It’s possible Odium alone Voidbrings. Without Magic Users, Voidbringing would be an “interaction with nature” system, mirroring Roshar’s pre-Shattering ecosystem with corrupted spren. The “Old Magic” (“Interaction with nature” system) I think the Old Magic is an Adonalsium-created “interaction with nature” system that Shard Investiture changed. I speculate the Nightwatcher (by some other name) began as a large splinter that native Rosharans personified into a sapient spren. We don’t know its original magic. I think Cultivation’s Investiture and human personification of Cultivation morphed that spren into the Nightwatcher. IMO, as an “interaction with nature” system, the Old Magic has two components. The Old Magic’s Fuel is Cultivation’s power. Its Focus is the Nightwatcher herself. The Old Magic remains an “interaction with nature” system, though Shard Invested, because mortals don’t direct its magic. They can ask the Nightwatcher for a boon; but she determines both the boon and the curse. Av tells Baxil, the Nightwatcher “gives [the boon] she feels you deserve, then gives you a curse to go along with it.” (WoK, Interlude I-7, Kindle p. 709.)
  5. The name Rial is an anagram for "liar." Brandon's done this before with Sebarial, an anagram for "base liar." To me, that's a big tip-off. He might even be Sebarial because I think Rial is a Dysian Aimian. At first I thought he was Zahel/Vasher's newest incarnation, but Zahel appears later in the scene, when Rial is also present. But when Rial says, "I’m a new man. Reborn in the bridge crews,” I see a Dysian rearranging itself into a "new man." It also seems to me a Dysian is uniquely qualified to be the organizational genius Sebarial is. And his "lazy expression" sounds like Sebarial. Of course, that raises questions about Palona. Is she something besides a two-armed Herdazian? Does that explain the couple's calm during the Narak battle? Sebarial might have reasons to tail Dalinar as a guard and learn things he might not learn as the Highprince of Commerce. Just some speculation to add to the mix.
  6. Raw speculation: The first five books are about gathering Roshar’s humans in Urithiru (“uniting” them). The gap between the arcs is the “Night of Sorrows,” when the Everstorm rises to submerge Urithiru in darkness. The last five books are about humans fighting back, causing Odium to question whether he can win. The culmination is the Duel between Honor’s and Odium’s Champions. My basis for this speculation? It just feels right…. There is one item of evidence – the image of the ten Shardblades held aloft against the Voidbringer hordes. I suggest these are the Honorblades, not KR Shardblades. Honorblades, we know, consume Stormlight. I think they consume any Investiture, especially if Nale’s “Sword of Retribution” turns out to be Nightblood. I speculate these Blades will be used to remove voidspren from the Voidbringers, returning them to their normal state. With his army gone, Odium chooses to Duel. I have more confidence projecing the saga’s ending. Brandon says he foreshadows that ending somewhere in the first two books. @zandi opined the story of Fleet (WoR, Chapter 59) tells that ending. I agree. I reconstruct that story to fill in what I think happens during the race. It goes without saying this is complete speculation and guesswork. Preliminary Thought: If @Zandi is correct, the race is the Duel of Champions. How then to explain the person Dalinar thinks is Odium’s Champion? I suggest (again with no evidence) that the ten former Silver Kingdoms each fall to a different Voidbringer army led by an opposing Champion. Each Kingdom has an Oathgate That’s why I think the first five books chronicle the human retreat to Urithiru. Dalinar sees someone recognizable who embodies the Thrill. I think he sees Nergaoul in possession of the “unmade” soul of the recently murdered Sadeas. The Thrill is peculiarly Alethi. KR in Dalinar’s "Starfall" vision (IIRC) say their warrior class congregates in “Alethela.” I speculate each Odium Champion is a listener “god” in a mortal's form who has ties to that Kingdom. When Odium fears he may lose, he calls upon his true Champion, the “God of Storms,” IMO a corrupted version of the Stormfather. Let’s begin the final Duel of Champions: The storm begins in the east, so it’s not the Everstorm. But the chapter never identifies the storm as a highstorm. The reference to the “God of Storms” could mean the Stormfather or the listener’s Rider of Storms. Again, I speculate Odium has injected his Investiture into the Stormfather, giving Odium control over the storms. If Odium controls the Stormfather, does that mean Dalinar is the “one who betrays us” from the WoK back cover? Nale mentions the danger of making the Nahel bond oaths without Honor. Maybe this is what he means? Through the corrupt Stormfather, who makes a corrupt Nahel bond, the Bondsmith himself is unknowingly corrupt? Fleet’s description matches Kaladin. Fleet runs, he doesn’t Windrun. That suggests the storm doesn’t hold Stormlight. I think this confirms the storm is not a highstorm. Fleet’s soul is a “sun.” On Roshar, spren are “souls,” and Syl is Kaladin’s “soul.” I think Kaladin must hold Stormlight to glow. By then he’s a full Windrunner and can store and use Stormlight with peak efficiency. He must saturate himself with Stormlight. I have only guesses why he doesn’t fly. Maybe running conserves Stormlight better. Maybe Odium set the Duel rules. Or worse, maybe an unknowingly corrupt Dalinar set the rules, thinking he was acting Honorably. Could that be Dalinar's betrayal? Kaladin runs out of Stormlight, but still makes it into Shinovar: I think the storm “wilts” because it loses its Investiture – Odium’s Investiture – when the storm hits the mountains east of Shinovar. Highstorms likewise lose Stormlight there. IMO, that’s why there are no spren in Shinovar. As with the Voidbringers, pulling Odium’s Investiture from the storm leaves it in its natural state. The Stormfather, the personification of Honor, recognizes Kaladin’s sacrifice to protect Roshar. Is there anything more “Honorable”? Kaladin fully merges with Syl. His body is dead, but their fully-mingled soul remains, “forever free to race the wind.” And that’s how humans defeat Odium. What their prize is – Odium leaving Greater Roshar with reduced power? – is unclear. A final thought: I think Cultivation is more prescient than Odium. I think she knew the terms of the Duel he would someday want to fight. She prepared for that day by making Shinovar a sinkhole for Investiture. She won and reaped her revenge on him for killing Honor. Highly speculative, but what do you think?
  7. My goodness, @The One Who Connects! I begin by saying this is all “raw speculation” based on “it feels right.” That’s an unpromising beginning for a serious theory. The post is what it is – some educated guesses about SLA’s structure and ending. Several posters have opined Nightblood is the Sword of Retribution, not me. My post takes no position on it, other than to point out Nightblood consumes Investiture like Honorblades do. That sentence, I think, expresses a “what if?” Of course, Nightblood could be an Awakened Honorblade (lol…sorta). Maybe you’re right. Again, the post is raw speculation. I can think of two reasons why the speculation is not unfounded: First, you know I believe Odium’s Investiture doesn’t bond, but is injected into other spren through a “hole.” Voidspren are like an implanted electrode. IOW, the magic swords don’t have to sever the listener-spren bond. They can just remove the implanted electrode from the bonded spren. Your WoB doesn’t address that, only the listener-spren bond itself. Second, certain cosmere magic consumes Investiture – Nightblood, larkins, and Honorblades to name three. I think you’d agree Nightblood, for example, could consume all listeners’ combined Investiture if allowed to. I suggest it may be possible to selectively consume different types of Investiture. Maybe, for example, if the Heralds unite their Honorblades, they only consume Odium’s Investiture? Just a thought. Also, I suspect (without evidence) it’s easier to sever a bond than to form one. You’re right again about Nergaoul’s movements. I said the Thrill is “peculiarly Alethi” because the KR “warrior class” killers congregate in Alethela. As KR, they may not feel the Thrill, but there must be some reason they’re all there. Maybe it doesn’t mean anything. Me, a “pedant”? Nooooo…not me! (Touche.) I do think a close focus on logic and detail is important, and my sense is everyone here agrees, including you. The truth is in the details. That’s one reason I value folks like you who point out the inconsistencies a close reading reveals. I give you an upvote for your perspicacity (ha!) despite your different view. I’m not sure my wife (or me) would agree with that last sentence. But you’re right that “someone recognizable” is not necessarily the same as something “terribly familiar” in another's eyes. IMO, either could be Sadeas, though. FWIW, I consider “familiar” a higher level of knowledge of another than is “recognizable.” Again, I raise questions, not answers, but this is an extremely important question that IMO goes directly to plot development. Here’s the full “Edgedancer" quote for reference: Ishar tells Nale unregulated oaths could “cause a Desolation.” As you know, I believe Odium has a way to corrupt Radiantspren. I think this is Ishar’s concern. IMO, Ishar implicitly tells Nale that the Stormfather – unlike Honor – can’t be trusted with oaths. IOW, even false oaths could strengthen the Nahel bond under the Stormfather. I think the Stormfather’s acceptance of all oaths without question shows Ishar may be right. If so, Dalinar could be someone the Stormfather corrupts. I’m reminded by stuff on the Spoiler Board that Dalinar is unlikely to be the “betrayer.” I do think he will face some bad consequence because of his bond to the Stormfather. Once Nale sees the Desolation, he’s done killing Surgebinders. He’s on Dalinar’s side for now. But it would be an interesting scene. Fair enough. Glad I could make you feel passion again. You and TR may be right. As I said, this just feels like it should be the ending. I’m curious what you think is the ending foreshadowed in the first two books. I don’t see many candidates. It’s one reason I agreed with Zandi when he first posted. Never be sorry for rambling. I do. The Allman Brothers do. I think you’re in good company! Regards!
  8. Brandon’s never said all planets are Shardworlds. The questioner in the WoB you and @The One Who Connects quote asks Brandon the difference between Major and Minor Shardworlds. The WoB doesn’t address the difference between Shardworlds and other planets. Why would a planet created by Adonalsium, that holds only his inherent Investiture, that no Shard ever visited or Invested, be called a Shardworld? Maybe an “Adonalsium-world…” The Shards divvied up Adonalsium’s power in the Shattering, the Spiritual Realm’s “true Investiture.” But pre-existing local planetary Investiture – Adonalsium’s inherent Investiture – stayed as it was, except to the extent Shards changed it. They did change the Investiture of Shardworlds. That’s why I think only those worlds are called “Shardworlds.” But Shards didn’t do anything on most cosmere planets. Khriss says many lack perpendicularities, despite their inherent Investiture. I rely on the quoted WoB for the distinction between “interaction with magic” systems and “people with magic” systems and for the notion that “every world created” (except Scadrial) holds Adonalsium’s inherent Investiture. I think this is an extremely important, foundational WoB for understanding the cosmere and its magic. But the WoB doesn’t say “every world created is now a Shardworld,” and I don’t believe such a WoB exists (though maybe you guys can find one). P.S. Hey, I just realized this is my "pi" post!
  9. First of the Sun does hold Adonalsium's inherent Investiture, but the Patji Shardpool Investiture must come from a Shard that no longer resides there. Otherwise, it would not be a "Shardworld," minor or major. There are many planets Shards never visited, but each of those planets IMO still holds the inherent Investiture Adonalsium left on them. Those are planets, not Shardworlds. First of the Sun is a Minor Shardworld. Hence, its Investiture must come in part from a Shard. I agree with most of the comments here, with unnamed exceptions. @StormblessDave, if you haven't yet read it, you might look at my post entitled "Pre-Shattering Magic." It presents my theory on the "baseline" magic of four Major Shardworlds. I discuss Roshar first and in depth.
  10. Doesn’t Brandon say (somewhere) the Returned and the Heralds are essentially the same magic system? I interpret him to mean the Honorblades are each an Honor/Cultivation splinter bound to an ideal. They're like the Returned’s Divine Breath, another splinter bound to an ideal. IMO, unlike the Divine Breath, the Honor/Cultivation splinter periodically possesses a different body when the Herald returns to the Physical Realm. Thus, I think Honor/Cultivation chose their ideals. Later, these ideals became Vorinized into the Divine Attributes. IOW, the ideals that became the Divine Attributes are “inherent aspects” of the Shards. I think Honor/Cultivation presented these ideals to humans in the form of the Heralds. Humans personified the Vorinized Heraldic ideals - the Divine Attributes - into the Radiantspren. I think this passage foreshadows what we’ll discover about the Heralds. They were “evil men made immortal” by the Oathpact. They agreed to become Cognitive Shadows infused with Honor/Cultivation’s Investiture and stand at the bridge between Braize and Roshar to fend off the voidspren. (I’ve used the “Horatius at the Bridge” comparison before and still think it’s apt. If you’ve read Jim Butcher’s excellent Codex Alera series, you’ll recognize that scene.) If the Heralds stay too long after a Desolation, a new one begins because there’s no one manning the bridge. IMO, that’s why Kalak is surprised one Herald going back is enough. Apparently, a single Oathkeeper maintains the Oathpact. This does suggest Odium didn’t try to cause a new Desolation after Aharietam. He wasn't bound by the Oathpact. It would have been easy for him to break through. Might Chana be the Reshi “king” whose Tai-na respects boldness above all else? There are issues with this, if she’s really Talik’s mother. But otherwise, it’s a possibility.
  11. This is a longer post than I intended. I foolishly read the thread about Taravangian after writing the first part of this post. That thread in turn led to the discussion of oath interpretation and Knight Radiant behavior. Advance apologies for lumping all that together here, but I think they are related issues. Radiantspren “True” Names I theorize each Radiantspren is the personification of the human ideal represented by their KR Order’s “Primary Attribute.” IMO, these ideals are the spren’s true names, reflecting what they are. The names in the novels are the names Radiantspren call themselves. These self-identifying names may reflect spren self-perception, but not the human perception each Radiantspren personifies. Examples: I describe the Radiantspren we know the most about in these terms. I don’t address all Radiantspren because we haven’t met them all. Honorspren IMO are “Protectingspren.” Syl protects Kaladin during the highstorm, holding back winds that would tear him apart. When Kaladin tumbles into the chasm, Syl’s last act before the bond breaks (Rock-a-bye Baby?) forces Stormlight into Kaladin, protecting him from the fall. She denies the Stormfather to help Kaladin reinstate his oaths. Protection is Syl’s purpose, what she is. Cryptics IMO are “Creativespren,” to be distinguished from creationspren. The essence of artistic creativity is pattern-recognition, seeing what others do not see. Pattern aids Shallan’s creativity by pushing her to more self-discovery and self-understanding, seeing the patterns within herself. That is necessary for her art to grow. He gives her creative advice throughout. When Shallan cannot see the “pattern” of the Oathgate, Pattern tells Shallan she should back up for perspective. Wyndle, whatever he and his fellow Ring members call themselves, IMO is a “Lovingspren.” He “mothers” Lift and frets about her health and safety. He scolds her to eat more (as every mother does), so that her Surgebinding won’t make her too skinny. Wyndle’s purpose is to love Lift, to care for her, so that she can love and care for others. Inkspren IMO are “Learnedspren.” Ivory seems willing to let Jasnah die in the WoR Prologue if she cannot learn how to use the Shadesmar beads properly. He acts like an exam proctor, testing her “learnedness” before he “passes” her into KR status. I think the following WoB (the third quote from @Calderis's “oath interpretation” post) supports the distinction between human perception and spren self-perception. Spren “self-identity” IMO doesn’t change their human-personified behavior. Rather, highspren think “honorspren will let their people break their oaths if they think it’s for a good cause.” IMO, an honorspren’s “good cause” is protecting people, which appears to supersede the oaths. I think the WoB’s last part addresses whether oaths are objective or subjective, not the human-personified nature of the spren itself – “how they work,” not what they are: KR Oaths @Calderis makes excellent points in his thread on KR behavior. (Upvotes not only for him but also for @Extesian, who supplied the quotations.) KR are not good or evil and may act “cruelly,” as Brandon says. Agreed, but I think a bit overstated. The Radiantspren won’t begin to bond unless the KR candidate has the same “temperament” – Primary Attribute – as the Radiantspren: protecting, creative, loving, etc. I think Attribute alignment places intrinsic limits on KR variance within the same Order. IMO, each KR Order’s Primary Attribute solely determines a KR candidate’s placement in that Order. Thus, I’d expect KR personalities to differ. I think many personality types can be protecting, or creative, or loving. It makes sense to me that the precise oath statement would differ from KR to KR within an Order. It’s also possible same-type spren themselves show personality differences. Radiantspren are “people” too. But IMO these differences don’t affect their nature, their Primary Attribute. I’m unconvinced all same-type spren personality variations “come from the person they are bonded to,” as @Calderis states (emphasis in original). FWIW, I think Radiantspren resemble Shards and their Mandates (intents). IMO both are power imbued with cognitive limitations. Both exercise their power subject to those limitations, even though (as Brandon says of Vessels) their personalities also affect their power exercise. KR Behavior So…to say KRs can act “dishonorably” seems obvious. Each Order is bound only by its common Primary Attribute. Oaths strengthen that bond, but again, only to more closely align a KR with its Order’s Primary Attribute. Attributes like Protection and Creativity don’t necessarily bear any relationship to one another. Windrunners and Lightweavers can have different goals and different means of obtaining them. Such differences can easily lead to conflict among Orders. @Calderis suggests Taravangian could be an Elsecaller like Jasnah. If I’m correct that Inkspren are “learned” spren, Taravangian clearly qualifies and could well attract an Inkspren. More so, because Brandon says in one of @Calderis’ WoBs that, until bonded, spren don’t fully comprehend the person they bond with. (That’s a fascinating comment!) I wonder how long Taravangian’s Nahel bond would survive, though. The Elsecaller Secondary Attribute is “giving.” Taravangian IMO deliberately misleads others. He does not share information, he shares misinformation. Maybe that counts as giving, but…. Posters discuss whether Taravangian is misguided or “evil” in a moral sense on the “Mr. T” thread. I won’t add to that discussion here. I do note the extent to which the Diagram seems to support Nale’s notion about the KR’s danger. Jiminy Cricket to the KR’s Pinocchio?
  12. KR Orders are the combination of “a concept or an ideal mixed with an essence…with two magics attached to it.” Radiantspren Primary Attributes form only the “ideal” part, what they personify. Brandon says all “Honor” spren are “bothered by lies,” regardless of their Order. The ideal and the Mandated Investiture that comprises the Radiantspren are separate parts of that combination. IOW, lies bother Syl because she’s made from Honor - the Shard of “oaths, promises and nobility” – not because she is a “protecting spren.” First, I agree Hoid is the Lightweaver Kal met before Shallan (in the “Wandersail” chapter). Brandon says he uses the Yolen variant of Lightweaving. Second, I wasn’t limiting Cryptics to the visual arts. Brandon says Cryptics are the spren that seek artists of all kinds. One would hope “self-awareness” is a trait everyone shares, not just artists. (Oh, if only it were so!) But IMO artists can’t achieve their full potential without total self-knowledge at some level. You and @Yata agree on this. I understand the conclusion derives from this WoB: IMO, this WoB suggests Inkspren approve Socrates’ idea (reported in Plato’s Apology) that “the unexamined life is not worth living.” I think “learnedness” requires more than mere knowledge or mere analysis, but some combination of the two. You can’t analyze something you don’t know, and thoughtless knowledge – rote memorization – doesn’t get you very far either. Jasnah is the perfect host for Ivory because she knows tons, but also thinks about the meaning of what she knows (and doesn’t know). Brandon’s example of the “thoughtful soldier who doesn’t just rush into battle” surprises me a bit. By that definition, Kal’s old squad leader Hav might qualify, as might Kal himself. IMO, that seems too low a bar to attract an Inkspren. Like your suggestion of “self-awareness” for Cryptics, I think mere “thoughtfulness” captures too many candidates. Also, logic is only one form of analysis. I think of “insight” as the intersection of analysis and imagination. Pure logic without imagination doesn’t necessarily provide insight (IMO). You and Yata may disagree with me, but “logicspren” just seems an inadequate descriptor. I also find it interesting that “Inkspren don't like how variable humans are, it's a thing out of Honor.” To me, this confirms that Honor is a conservative force, seeking to place humans into predictable ruts. That must have storyline implications somewhere. This was @Calderis.
  13. I think the KR abandoned their oaths in the Recreance because they discovered that Odium had the ability to control their Radiantspren. I believe Voidbringing is Odium’s form of Hemalurgy. I speculate Odium used Voidbringing to inject voidspren into Radiantspren. I believe this is the Diagram’s “secret” that destroyed the KR. Here’s my logic: 1. I think Hemalurgy is the ability to transfer innate Investiture from one entity to another. @Cowmanthethirdreminds me that, technically, “Hemalurgy” is Ruin’s magic system, since it relies on blood to effectuate the transfer. But I think the power to transfer innate Investiture (by whatever name) is available to every Shard, subject to their Mandate (intent). Even non-Awakening Breath transfers IMO are Endowment’s form of Hemalurgy, since Breaths are innate Investiture. This WoB states Spiritual Realm powers are "not themselves of [any] Shard. They are simply tools." That includes the power to transfer innate Investiture (by whatever name). 2. I think Voidbringing (not Voidbinding) is Odium’s “possession” magic. He gains control of a soul by changing the soul’s innate Investiture. I believe Roshar’s innate Investiture always manifests as spren. Rosharans call spren a “soul.” The Rider of Storms is the “soul” of the storm. When Fleet dies, his “soul” rises into the storm “forever to race the wind” – a windspren. A Tai-na’s spren is its “soul.” 3. Voidspren IMO are Odium’s Hemalurgical “spikes” – Odium Investiture (voidspren) injected into a soul’s innate Investiture (the host spren). I think this WoB confirms that (emphasis added): Listeners bond with pre-Shattering spren. I think the only listener forms that rely on “hole-less” spren are the Lost Legion’s five basic forms. IMO, stormspren are a pre-Shattering spren Odium controls through a voidspren. In Dalinar’s Purelake vision, a voidspren-injected “host” spren becomes a Thunderclast. 4. In this post, I theorize Radiantspren combine two pre-Shattering spren. Those are the spren that give Radiantspren their ability to Focus two powers. I believe it’s possible for Odium to control the Radiantspren by injecting a voidspren into one or both of those spren or the Radiantspren itself, perhaps through the “hole” created by the combination. 5. Odium might have corrupted earlier KR generations this way. The Surgebinder War that preceded Nohadon’s Desolation may be an example. Vorin contempt for the KR may stem from their Odium-corrupted behavior as much as the Recreance. I think the Recreance KR discovered their exposure to Odium. The KR had to abandon their oaths in unison. 6. I think Odium has gained control of other spren. I’ve long believed the Heralds are spren – each a Horatius guarding the bridge between Braize’s and Roshar’s subastrals. Here’s Kalak’s description of Jezrien in the SLA Prelude: Some posters believe Odium corrupted Ishar as well as Jezrien. IMO, Odium now controls the Stormfather. 7. I think Voidbringing is reversible. My Odium mantra: Hate corrodes and divides. It spoils relationships. I think Odium’s Mandate (intent) severs Connections. His Investiture cannot form its own bonds and instead “unmakes” souls. IMO, voidspren are like electrodes inserted into the host spren. They can be removed without damage to the host. The Nahel bond, in contrast, mingles souls. That’s my speculation, anyway. Enjoy yourselves!
  14. I measure Investiture in "gob" units, as in "gobs of Investiture." They come in small, medium and large sizes... You only measure what you imagine.
  15. Actually, I do agree with this and the cosmere-wide applicability of Hemalurgy. I said the same thing in the OP (before edits): I believe, however, every Shard can use every power. It may be harder for some Shards to use certain powers, but they can all do it. Here’s what my OP edit added to it: IMO, Hemalurgy, Voidbringing, and non-Awakening Breath transfers share this ability to transfer innate Investiture. Windrunners and Coinshots also seem to share abilities (to change gravitational pull), as do Lightweavers and Soul Forgers (to transform souls). NP if you disagree. The OP's main point is that Voidbringing is Odium’s “possession” magic and is the reason for the Recreance. There is text and WoB support for the first conclusion: In-world characters can be wrong, and these passages (from Shallan and Dalinar) seem based on superstition. These passages don’t address the “spren possession” idea. But they do fit with Brandon’s statement about how Odium controls spren. If Odium can inject voidspren into pre-Shattering spren, which Brandon confirms, then IMO Odium can also control Radiantspren the same way. As I say in the OP, I believe Radiantspren are the combination of "lesser" spren (Brandon's word). Odium's ability to control Radiantspren seems ample cause for the Recreance. Once again you make a good argument. But I’ve not suggested all Heralds are possessed, only Jezrien and maybe Ishar. Aside from the Prelude, the WoK Prologue (maybe), or some other cameo, we’ve not seen either Herald appear on-screen. We can’t know what they remember or how they behave or whether they would say something about it. Jezrien’s current “drooling” state (if that’s really him) suggests something ruined him. Pattern says almost no Radiantspren survived the Recreance. Syl states the Stormfather is “broken.” I’m not suggesting that “brokenness” comes from the Stormfather’s possession. It’s probably because of Honor’s death and the Stormfather absorbing Tanavast’s Cognitive Shadow. But I do think such “brokenness” might be a predicate to possession, just like a broken soul enables Radiantspren to bond with their KR. I also believe the Lost Legion’s memories and their Songs support the notion that voidspren possessed listeners through their spren. Hmmmm… What if your friend’s dog runs with your dog and becomes rabid? Assume there are no rabies tests or vaccines and the first sign of your dog’s rabies is when he becomes a mass killer. (Cujo anyone?) You wouldn’t put him down before that happens? The OP is speculative. It tries to explain why mass concurrent bond-breaking may have been necessary. Perhaps a poster previously suggested Odium’s control over Radiantspren to explain this, but I didn’t see such a post. Among the explanations I have seen, this one seems to me the most likely.
  16. I theorized a few years ago that time manipulation is still part of a Truthwatcher's magic, comparing it to Allomantic time bubbles. @Argent didn't like the theory then and made a good counter. I based my conclusion on the WoR multi-Shardbearer duel. A more recent post borrowed from @skaa's theory of the essences to explain the KR orders in terms of Radiantspren (representing the Surges), "ideals," and essences. I posited there (and still believe) that Radiantspren are a combination of two "lesser" spren - pre-Shattering sentient spren. That's why Radiantspren can Focus two separate powers. Brandon first talked about this stuff in two 2010 WoBs I cite there.
  17. @Calderis, apologies for my late arrival to the party, especially since I issued the invitation. I understand your theory to have two pillars: (1) the elements that comprise Focuses (forms, metals, commands, and spren/bonds) are “significant” throughout the cosmere but have greatest “prominence” on their respective Shardworlds; and (2) Focuses are a product of their Shardworld and not their Shards. I agree Focus elements exist elsewhere than their Major Shardworld; but why do you say they have “significance” elsewhere? I see why commands might be a specialized version of what Khriss calls “intent” (not to be confused with Shard “intent” – one reason I call Shard “intent” a Mandate). But your other examples don’t seem to line up as well with your “general-to-special” theory. ASIDE: I thought metals have cosmere-significance because that’s Investiture’s solid state and because practitioners of the Metallic Arts can use metal as their Focus everywhere. Is there something I missed? The first and last sentences in this quote seem to me contradictory. (I assume “present investiture” means the Shards’ Investiture?) I agree Shards created their magic systems by adapting to the magic they found on their chosen planets. I also agree Shards chose their planets largely because of the “inherent magic” Adonalsium left on their planet. But I believe Focuses are part of the magic systems the Shards created. Neither Adonalsium nor the Shards need Focuses. IMO, the “cosmere-wide” elements you describe became Focuses because of the same “Shard-Shardworld” interactions that produced the magic systems. I think this might explain your “Focuses are specialized versions of cosmere-wide phenomena” theory. I’ll quote my reply to @Cowmanthethird in another of your threads to describe how I think Focuses developed on each Major Shardworld (other than Scadrial): @Extesian, I’ve seen the first WoB you cite, but haven’t appreciated its significance: “people’s perception has sort of changed how the magic works.” We know that’s generally true, like with Kaladin’s slave brands. But Brandon says that’s why fabrial gemstones of nearly identical chemical composition can nonetheless produce different magical results! Lots to chew on there. Thanks! Also, if you haven’t yet read it yet, I suggest you look at @skaa's post that explains cosmere magic in terms of string theory. You might find something there to support your wavelength theory.
  18. Scadrial shows us class warfare. Sel shows us religious warfare. I think Roshar shows us race warfare. I read the Stormfather’s statement as one of racial superiority and arrogance towards the listeners. The Stormfather believes only “beasts” bond with “subspren,” presumably pre-Shattering sentient spren. Oaths are not involved in such bonds. The Stormfather claims non-oath bonds don’t require “intelligence, free will, and choice.” While his statement also refers to greatshells, skyeels and other native lifeforms that bond spren, I believe listeners are his target, since the Stormfather lumps all “beasts and subspren” together. He sneers at non-sapient spren and the “beasts” they bond with. Maybe Honor imparted a sense of racial superiority to the Stormfather through his cognitive shadow. Maybe humans personified the Stormfather to embody this attitude. But I think Odium “corrupted” the Stormfather. This is a “hateful” attitude. I believe Odium somehow inserted his Investiture into the Stormfather to effect subtle changes in his makeup. There’s only scant evidence for this. Syl calls the Stormfather “broken,” although that can mean many things. We have examples of voidspren “corrupting” other spren. Brandon says, “many of these spren have that kind of ‘hole’ in them, and that’s what allows Odium to take control of them.” I agree with @zandi that the “Fleet” chapter (WoR, Chapter 59) foreshadows the SLA ending. This also provides some evidence of Odium’s corruption of the Stormfather. I think Kaladin’s race with the “storm” (never identified as a highstorm) is the true duel between Honor’s and Odium’s champion. (I think Dalinar’s belief he’s seen “Odium’s champion” may be wrong.) Kaladin races the storm into Shinovar, where it loses its Investiture (including Odium’s), and becomes "normal" again. I don’t know why Kaladin would have raced the storm to his death and resurrection (assuming this is the ending foreshadowed) unless the race ensured Roshar’s survival. My main point, though, is that the Stormfather expresses an attitude that leads to division and hatred. He expresses Odium’s attitude, not Honor’s. It is the attitude that leads to racial warfare and genocide, as we see on Roshar.
  19. I agree with you all that a literal parsing of the Stormfather’s statement means oaths mark sapient beings. You all may be right and maybe I am “reading too much into this.” But I think word context and connotation justify my conclusion. To me, this is such an odd and unnecessary statement for the Stormfather to make. 1. I start with the presumption Brandon chooses his words carefully. The Stormfather could have said, “All oaths are the mark of sapient beings,” if that was the point Brandon wanted to make. He didn’t. Instead, he compared “men” with “beasts” and “true” spren with “sub”-spren. You may think his word choice is accurate and appropriate. I think it is pejorative. 2. Even Dalinar thought this was an “extreme opinion.” He questions whether it’s the Stormfather’s opinion or Honor’s and “chews” over this. If the opinion were just an obvious comparison between sapience and sentience, it shouldn’t have bothered Dalinar. 3. Most importantly, I don’t think the Stormfather was saying only sapient beings can make oaths. Radiantspren don’t make oaths; their KR do. The KR oaths bond them to their spren. That’s why I read the Stormfather as saying, “Oaths mark the relationship between men and true spren.” “Beasts and subspren” also bond symbiotically, just not through oaths. @Calderis, I noticed you say in another thread that bonds are central to the cosmere, not just to Roshar. I understand why you think bonds are Roshar’s Focus. Can you point me to a post where you lay out your cosmere-wide bond theory? If not, perhaps you can begin a topic or state that theory here? I’d find it helpful if you can also define what “bond” means to you. Thanks!
  20. I recently posted that the Dor is Adonalsium’s Investiture, changed by Dominion and Devotion only as necessary to create Sel’s magic systems. Responders cited the prepublication AU Selish essay in rebuttal. Khriss states that Devotion and Dominion’s Investiture alone constitutes the Dor. Here’s my question for this thread: If Khriss is right, and Shardworld Investiture comes solely from the Shards, then where is Adonalsium’s Investiture? He created the Cosmere – where did his Investiture go? Contrary to Khriss, I believe MOST Investiture in the Cosmere comes from Adonalsium. Except for Scadrial, a Shard-created planet, Shards piggy-backed on Adonalsium’s Investiture to make their magic systems. I’m working through a major unpublished theory, and this is a key component. In view of AU, I thought I’d throw this discussion open for advice and input. Where do YOU think Adonalsium’s Investiture went? Here are my thoughts: 1. Brandon says the Cosmere is identical to our universe’s physics, except for its magical component. He says that magic is PART of the Cosmere’s “physics.” 2. Brandon says that Adonalsium left “Ambient Magic” on Shardworlds – magic that is part of the “natural ecosystem” but that mortals cannot command. To me, “natural” means that Adonalsium created the ecosystem including its magic. By definition, anything Adonalsium created is “natural,” since nothing existed before he created it. 3. There are two known examples of Ambient Magic: First of the Sun and pre-human Roshar. First of the Sun’s magic stems from the Patje Shardpool, which Invests worms eaten by the Aviar that give the Aviar their magical abilities. The Aviar bond to specific mortals, like Sixth of the Dusk, and grant those mortals certain cognitive abilities. These mortals cannot command the magic to do anything. 4. Pre-human Roshar life was dominated by animals (and plants?) engaged in various symbiotic relationships with spren. Brandon describes how “natural” it is for spren to bond with listeners, and we see spren supporting greatshells, skyeels and other fauna. Listeners transform during highstorms, the bringers of Stormlight, and WoR suggests greatshells do as well. 5. Highstorms were originally “meteorological events” and were “later Invested.” I interpret this “later Investment” as coming from the Shards. I believe highstorms always produced Stormlight, since that was “natural” to Roshar. Without Stormlight, spren symbiosis would likely have been impossible. The listeners’ “Rider of Storms” predates human migration to Roshar. 6. If Stormlight is a natural part of Roshar’s ecology – part of Roshar’s Ambient Magic – then Stormlight must be Adonalsium Investiture. Otherwise, we’d have to conclude that the Shards created Roshar’s spren-based Ambient Magic. With all the Adonalsium spren on Roshar, that seems unlikely. [My unpublished theory concludes that Honor and Cultivation’s Investment created Radiantspren and made spren bondable to humans and stand-alone gemstones (that is, gemstones not part of “living” gemhearts). Spren in their “natural” state could only bond with native lifeforms. Shard Investment thus created the Surgebinding and fabrial magic systems.] 7. If Stormlight is Adonalsium Investiture and fuels Roshar’s Ambient Magic, why don’t we see similar things on other Shardworlds? I think we do; hence, my “The Dor is Adonalsium’s Investiture” post. I suggest the Shards picked the planets they did to Invest because Adonalsium had left more Investiture on those planets than others. That made it easier for the Shards to create their magic systems. [I’m leaving Scadrial out of this discussion, since it is a Shard-created planet. I do address it in my theory.] 8. Khriss is an arcanist, a “magical scientist.” Scientists make mistakes. I think Khriss over-values the role of the Shards and undervalues Adonalsium’s role in creating Cosmere magic. Brandon hints this may be so: “I’ve begun to wonder if something greater is happening on Sel than we…have guessed. Something with origins lost in time.” (AU Kindle, p. 17.) 9. Khriss also doesn’t know how the Patje Shardpool came to be on First of the Sun. To me, this in particular highlights her blind spot about Adonalsium’s Investiture. If you agree with Khriss, please answer this thread’s question: where is Adonalsium’s Investiture? We know for sure it’s on Roshar…where did the rest of it go? Possible counterarguments: A. “Adonalsium’s Investiture is still in the Spiritual Realm and is now controlled by the Shards.” That’s true, but it doesn’t fully answer the question. My question is what happened to Investiture Adonalsium ALREADY INVESTED on Shardworlds before he Shattered. Investiture exists in all three Realms, just like everything else. Stormlight, for example, exists in the Physical Realm in gaseous form; exists in the Cognitive Realm as collectively perceived by Roshar’s inhabitants; and exists in Roshar’s Spiritual DNA, part of the planet’s SpiritWeb. It is the Ambient Magic Adonalsium built in to the planet, the Investiture he already Invested in that planet. B. “Adonalsium’s Investiture was left in small amounts on many, many planets. He didn’t Invest any one or more planets with enough magic to create a magic system.” This argument has merit, except for the contrary example of Roshar. Adonalsium Invested A LOT of Stormlight, enough to sustain the entire planet’s flourishing ecosystem. If it happened once, it happened more than once. C. A corollary to this argument is that Adonalsium mostly Invested in the Cosmere’s matter and energy. He Invested little or nothing in Investiture, as Khriss’ “Drominad System” essay suggests. Again I pose Roshar as contrary evidence. What do you think? Where is Adonalsium’s Investiture?
  21. @bookspren, I agree with your view of Roshar’s objective reality. As @Yata says and Kaladin observes, listeners are more honorable than humans. But IMO the Stormfather presents a racist attitude, not reality. (Great name, btw.) I interpret this to mean “true spren” are Radiantspren, the only spren that bond with “men” through oaths (other than maybe the godspren themselves). Because listeners don’t bond through oaths, the Stormfather calls them “beasts.” That’s classic racist propaganda. Even the phrase “subspren” IMO is offensive, in the same way being called “subhuman” is. Dalinar himself puzzles over the Stormfather’s “extreme opinion”: @Yata, it is a pleasure seeing you again! I hope we can be friends even when we disagree. I agree the Stormfather means oaths “make the difference between Humans and Beasts.” I think in some ways his comment is even worse if he does refer to mundane oaths rather than magical. Non-human listeners make oaths and promises to one another. Yet the Stormfather considers listeners “beasts” because their oaths don’t bind their spren. You make a great point about how the Stormfather treated Eshonai. Two possible explanations: 1. Odium may have Invested the Stormfather after that scene, when highstorm met Everstorm. Syl says the Stormfather is “broken.” Those cracks in his soul may have allowed Odium’s Investiture to enter him during the “Battle of the Storms.” 2. Eshonai already had an incipient bond with the comet spren. Maybe this made her a “man” to the Stormfather. I’ve always though it odd the Stormfather allowed Eshonai to bond a voidspren. He calls oaths “The mark of intelligence, free will, and choice.” Yet not once does the Stormfather refuse a requested bond. He gives me this feeling of “Okay, if you insist…” I understand he intends his comment to refer to “men.” But does the Stormfather himself have free will?
  22. Since this thread refuses to die, I’ll consolidate my “theory” limericks here. These are the summaries of my “Magic System Components” posts. I’ve linked the posts themselves for context. General Theory All systems have Fuel and are Focused. Shards added a User and Catalyst. Mortals now can direct Their own magic effect, Like becoming a soul-forging analyst. Fuel Each system is powered by Fuel Without which no magic can do. Fuel’s usually Physical, But sometimes it’s Spiritual, Since Catalysts bring power too. Focus A Focus determines which power Is available and in what manner. Each Focus is linked To one power, I think, And Khriss calls this process “an Investiture.” User Only sapient beings are Users. Their mind directs magic and chooses The magic’s effect, And what they select Through their Spiritweb outpours and oozes. Catalyst A “Catalyst” this substance Khriss calls, For Shard power a Catalyst installs. Composed of Shard essence, Its heated tumescence Adds energy to break through Realm walls. Lines 9-10 of Yeats’ “Leda and the Swan” inspired the last two lines of this limerick. That sonnet describes how Zeus, in the form of a swan, assaulted Leda, who birthed Helen of Troy and the Trojan War.
  23. I agree. We call the Stormfather and the Nightwatcher “godspren” for a reason. “God” is a complex idea. I speculate these spren originally personified pre-Shattering gods of storms and the earth (or some such deities). Their complexity is why I think such spren had to await sapient populations before they formed. I also agree with @Cowmanthethird that, instead, a “massive” unnamed splinter originally distributed Stormlight. This splinter hadn’t yet been personified into a spren. Brandon talks about the difference between splinters and spren here. Your Roshar model can still be correct whether or not the Stormfather as godspren existed from the beginning. (That’s why my earlier post says these are quibbles and not a big deal.) I agree. Sentience precedes sapience. As species develop, their capacities grow. Spren that personify fire, wind, and life probably came into existence with the earliest sentient life. Even now, however, I think greatshells and listeners bond with sentient, not sapient, spren for their changes. IOW, pre-Shattering sentient spren caused the species’ evolution to sapience. Once there, these species’ can conceive and personify “god,” creating the pre-Shattering versions of godspren. It's unsurprising humans found their way to Roshar pre-Shattering, but I don’t fully credit this paraphrased WoB. Memory and misinterpretation can easily translate “people” into “humans.” People – sapient species like Aimians and listeners – certainly existed on Roshar then. Regardless, humans would have lacked sufficient numbers then to much impinge on the other species’ collective mind. I also appreciate the level of your conviction… Ha! Not my ambition, especially when hardly anyone agrees with my theories. During my tenure here, I do average almost a post per week. I guess it’s true I post essays. I like to think things through and document my views. That takes space and time. I truly believe if people read my theories carefully and with an open mind, they might find a lot that makes sense – or at least gets them thinking in different directions. I think each planet’s inherent Investiture and original “design” limit what might serve as a Focus there. The Shards adapted existing magic to form their magic systems, choosing a Focus consistent with the planet’s inherent Investiture and design. This sounds to me like Focuses develop from an interaction between the planet and the Shard, as you propose. I do think the planetary component precludes Shards who share planets to choose their own Focuses independent of the other resident Shard(s). I explain what I think each planet’s original magic was in my Pre-Shattering Magic post. On Sel, Adonalsium Invested the ground. On Roshar, he Invested the highstorms. On Nalthis, he Invested electromagnetic radiation. On Taldain, he Invested the oceans. Sel’s Focus is forms because the Shards IMO added their Investitures to the Investiture Adonalsium left in the ground. Shard Investiture turned topographic features rooted in the ground into the magical language that could direct and Focus the Dor. Their splintering fragmented the initial system, but I think that just created Focus “sub-types,” as you put it. Roshar’s Focus is spren (IMO) because Adonalsium’s “touch and design” makes Roshar Realmically-permeable. Power leaks into Roshar’s Cognitive Realm and Invests ideas before the power passes into the Physical Realm. Khriss says Shard Investiture “expanded” this spren-based system to, among other things, create Radiantspren as Surgebinding’s Focus (IMO). Nalthis’ Focus is its visualized commands, with emphasis on the visualization. I think this grows out of Nalthis’ original “quantum physics” design that I describe in the “Pre-Shattering Magic” post. Awakeners’ visualization IMO calls to mind “Schrodinger’s cat” and the ardents’ WoK experiment that fixes the length of firespren: only when an object is observed (and Cognitively “imprinted”) can its actual state be known. To imprint behavior onto the Breath of an Awakened object, Awakeners must visualize how they want the object to behave. Brandon says commands are “like your mind reaching into the Spiritual Realm and you have to like conceive something.” Taldain’s Focus is unknown. I speculate it’s an Autonomy splinter that attaches itself to the Sand Master. I further speculate the splinter chooses its host based on the host’s degree of self-reliance. I suspect this splinter resembles Radiantspren and Divine Breath, which also choose a host based on character. Please note this is raw speculation without much evidence. I think Ruin and Preservation’s Investiture and design of Scadrial acts the same toward later Shard arrivals. As Brandon says, Odium (and implicitly Trell) would have to substantially Invest Scadrial to influence its magic. He notes Scadrians already have an Identity tied to current Scadrial. Brandon calls Scadrial’s magic “goofy” because Scadrial is composed solely of Ruin and Preservation. The theory doesn’t have to address “the weirdness with the groupings.” IMO, those groupings are irrelevant to the issue of Focus. IMO, Hemalurgy would observe the “one Focus per power” rule even if it could transfer all innate Investitures of every kind all at once, whether Physical, Cognitive or Spiritual. Focus is a function of the Hemalurgical power itself and how Ruin chooses to implement it, not the abilities Hemalurgy conveys to the target. FWIW, the distinction between Shard power and other Investitures underlies all my theories and causes me the most difficulties in my Forum debates. “Power,” “true Investiture,” “the godly powers,” “the energy of Shards” – whatever name you want to call it – is IMO different from the specialized Investitures power creates on each planet. Preservation’s power created Allomancy, which relies on the Allomantic gene’s specialized Investiture to work. Preservation’s and Ruin’s combined power created Feruchemy, which relies on the Feruchemical gene’s specialized Investiture to work. Ruin’s power created Hemalurgy, which relies on Ruin’s expression of the Hemalurgical power to work. Innate Investiture is what Hemalurgy works on. Innate Investiture confers magical abilities, but is not power itself. It is the Focused expression of power, a specialized type of Investiture. (Redundancy is why my posts are so long…) Fair enough. “Hema” makes it Ruin’s. IMO, Shai’s Soul Forgery and Shallan’s Lightweaving use the same “soul transformation” power. I take your point. I add only that IMO other Shards all have the same ability to transfer innate Investiture, but use different means. That where the interaction of Shard and Shardworld becomes important, defining the limits of a Shard’s expression of its power on a Shardworld. Brandon says Shards may choose not to use a power because the Shard-Shardworld constraints make it too Investiture-costly for them to want to. You’re very welcome! And an upvote to you for politeness and sheer persistence!
  24. Hmmmm…. This thread discusses a lot of interesting topics. Very informative and entertaining – exactly what the 17th Shard should be! Hemalurgy’s Focus I think there’s a difference between the Hemalurgical power and Allomantic and Feruchemical abilities. IMO, Hemalurgy is not, as @The One Who Connects puts it, a "’same metal, multiple powers’ thing.” The only Shard power involved in Hemalurgy IMO is the power to transfer innate Investiture from one person to another. Different Hemalurgical metals Focus the Hemalurgical power to transfer different grouped abilities. For Focus purposes, I don’t think it matters that the metals transfer related abilities in groups. Those abilities stem from the victim’s innate Investiture and not the Hemalurgical power. That innate Investiture doesn’t need to be Focused. The power to transfer that innate Investiture does. Brandon says (somewhere) that Hemalurgy is as much art as magic. IIRC, the art inheres in the knowledge of where to place the spikes. I agree with consensus that spike-placement (in both victim and target) determines the target’s abilities based on the transferred innate Investiture. But I think the metal-Focused Hemalurgical power first must make the spike capable of capturing and transferring the innate Investiture that grants those abilities. On a related issue, I think the Hemalurgical power is available to every Shard. This WoB states Spiritual Realm powers are not of the Shards, but are “simply tools.” Shard Mandates (intents) determine how that power is accessed and expressed. Violent metal spikes are Ruin’s expression of Hemalurgy. It’s available anywhere because of its metal Focus. Other Shards IMO also use the Hemalurgical power, but in their own way. I think simple Breath transfers are a benign form of Hemalurgy consistent with Endowment’s life-giving Mandate. One person passes his Breath, his innate Investiture, to another. I think Voidbringing (not Voidbinding) utilizes Odium’s form of Hemalurgy (a topic for another day). Pre- and Post-Shattering Roshar I have some quibbles (nothing big) with @Calderis’ analysis of Roshar's magical history. Khriss describes Roshar’s current magic as an “expansion” of its pre-Shattering spren-based magic. There are, nevertheless, some differences in the Investitures and spren available on Roshar pre- and post-Shattering. The “Investiture of Adonalsium” created Roshar as it originally was. That Investiture didn’t “interact” with Roshar; it built Roshar. IMO, everything Adonalsium created is “natural” simply because he created it. I think there is a “natural form of Stormlight” (by whatever name) without Honor’s Investiture. Shards later “interacted” with the Roshar Adonalsium created, and they changed things. Do you mean the Stormfather always existed? If so, I disagree. Spren are personified ideas. I think Roshar needs a sapient population capable of personification before splinters can become spren. That means spren can’t form until greatshells, Aimians and listeners reach the top of the evolutionary ladder. Their collective minds then personify the highstorms into the Rider of Storms (not the Stormfather). Roshar’s Investiture always existed, but I don’t think it formed itself into spren at the beginning. I do agree Roshar’s “natural laws” made spren development possible, even inevitable. I also agree Stormlight (as constituted both pre- and post-Shattering) is critical to Roshar’s evolution. But spren IMO reflect evolutionary development rather than cause it. I think local lifeforms must first develop sapience for spren to appear. The Rider of Storms predates the current system, not the Stormfather. As a splinter of Adonalsium’s Investiture, the Rider may not act like the Stormfather. Stormlight now includes Honor’s Mandated Investiture. Maybe the Rider of Storms was a Dawnshard that could bind both voidish and mortal? (Another topic.) We don’t know. I think human migration and Honor’s Investiture in Roshar converted the Rider of Storms into the Stormfather. Humans personify the highstorms differently from the listeners. Honor has made the highstorms into his perpendicularity. As Spiritual Realm Investiture passes through the Cognitive Realm’s Stormfather into Roshar’s Physical Realm, Stormlight IMO becomes Honor-laden, changing Roshar’s ecosystem from how it was pre-Shattering. I also think, Calderis, your analysis may undermine your bond-Focus theory. The Stormfather turns raw, “consistent” Spiritual Realm Investiture – Shard power – into Stormlight, a unique form of local Investiture. I call that operation “Focusing” power, distilling it from the general to the specific. That suggests a spren – the Stormfather – is Stormlight’s Focus. Housekeeping and Forum Etiquette @The One Who Connects, thanks for referring to 3 of my posts! Heady stuff! I think the only other time a poster quoted a post from a different thread, they inadvertently – and wrongly – cited me as authority against myself! (That was unusual...) Does this mean I’m one of the “’big names’ on here” now? (JK.) Like @Cowmanthethird, I’ve felt heat from those who are “frustrated” at “being right/knowing what we're talking about” who must deal with the less enlightened. I’ve been on the other side too and come across more “overconfident” than I intended…perhaps even in this post. That can be off-putting. I value your thoughts about this and your willingness to share them. It’s a reminder that outliers and different drummers have feelings too.
  25. A Forum “well-established theory” (WET) states a User powers magic with Fuel and shapes the magical effect through a Focus. I agree with WET, with some tweaks. I believe there are different types of magic systems that share different WET components. IMO, all magic systems have Focus and Fuel. All “people with magic” systems additionally have a User. “Catalytic people with magic” systems add what Khriss calls a “Catalyst.” I detail each magical component in related posts to isolate those topics for separate discussion. In this post, I’ll first summarize the differences among magic systems. I then state how I think the components relate to one another and how they apply to specific magic systems. I call “revised” WET, “Re-WET.” Types of Magic Systems I theorize there are two main types of magic systems: "Interaction with nature” systems and “people with magic” systems. IMO, the “people with magic” systems – systems where sapient beings can direct the magical effect – are subdivided into those that use “Catalysts” and those that don’t. I think Catalysts are substances Users consume to Invest themselves with Shard “power” (Spiritual Realm Investiture not part of a Spiritweb – IMO the cosmere’s Spiritual energy). Shards created “people with magic” systems post-Shattering, and they are found only on Major Shardworlds. In summary: “Catalytic people with magic” systems – Sapient beings (“people”) can direct Shard power. Examples: Allomancy, Surgebinding, and Awakening. “Non-Catalytic people with magic” systems – People can direct local Shardworld Investiture, but not Shard power. Examples: Feruchemy, the Returned, and non-Awakening Breath Transfers. “Interaction with nature” systems – People can interact with local Shardworld Investiture, but cannot direct magic of any kind. Examples: Threnody’s shades, the Patji’s Eye ecosystem on First of the Sun, and Roshar’s pre-Shattering magical ecosystem. Preliminary Thought IMO, Adonalsium created the “interaction with nature” systems when he formed the cosmere. The first WoB above states, “There is inherent Investiture on every world created.” Shards later added their Investiture to some of these systems, but these systems are still “natural” in the sense they are built into their planets, part of their planets’ Spiritwebs. “People with magic” systems OTOH are IMO artificial constructs the Shards created to approximate how the Shards themselves make magic. Shards think, and magic happens. “People’s” minds are too weak to direct large amounts of power by themselves. Magic system components IMO are “work-arounds” to fill this gap. For this reason, some components don’t fit neatly into a model. Focus, for example, overlaps other components like a User’s commands and Catalysts. WET Here’s @Spoolofwhool’s succinct and representative expression of WET: Re-WET Here’s my suggestion to revise WET’s components. I discuss each Re-WET component in the linked posts. User: A person whose mind directs the Fuel. Focus: A component that determines which power is available for magic. Fuel: The power or local Investiture that causes a magical effect. Catalyst: A substance Users consume to Invest themselves with Shard power. Note on “User”: I think a User must be a sapient being, a “person.” I also think the User component includes magical “Identity,” “innate Investiture,” and “Initiation.” Identity IMO is the relationship between the User and their native Shardworld’s Investiture. Innate Investiture is the Investiture grafted onto a User’s soul that makes them a User. Initiation is the process by which a potential User becomes an actual User. I discuss these in the “User” post. Note on “Focus”: I believe a Focus determines the power available for magic. IMO, local Shardworld Investiture cannot be further Focused. It already embodies the “essence” of the power that created it. Note on “Fuel”: I follow WET’s convention of naming magic-causing Investiture “Fuel.” As so defined, upper case “Fuel” seems more of a magical engine than that engine’s “fuel.” Lower case “fuel” is a substance consumed to provide energy to a process, like gasoline energizes a car’s motion. I believe all magic does have such “fuel,” which I discuss in the “Fuel” post. Please bear in mind, though, that both WET and Re-WET identify “Fuel” as the substance that causes magic to happen, not the substance consumed to add energy to the magical process. Note on “Catalyst”: I believe each Catalyst is made from a Shard’s “essence,” the Shard’s converted power. On Scadrial, metal is Preservation’s “concentrated essence” (BoM, Chapter 28, Kindle p. 359). On the other Major Shardworlds, I believe that “essence” is a form of the Shardworld’s local Investiture. I theorize this Investiture is found in Roshar’s highstorms, Taldain’s irradiated oceans, Nalthis’ electromagnetic radiation (EMR), and Sel’s ground. Catalysts add energy to the magical process (and hence are “fuel”); but unlike chemical catalysts, the process consumes them. Note on “magic systems”: WET equates the term “manifestation of Investiture” with “magic system.” While I don’t think it matters much, I’m unconvinced the terms mean the same thing. In the Mistborn Ars Arcana, Khriss describes the Metallic Arts as “manifestations of Investiture.” She doesn’t describe magic systems in other books that way, which suggests the term isn’t definitional. I interpret the term literally – a “manifestation of Investiture” is how Investiture manifests in a planet’s Physical Realm. Thus, I see Stormlight and Radiantspren as Rosharan “manifestations of Investiture.” Neither is a “magic system.” IMO, they are components of the Surgebinding “magic system,” its Catalyst and Focus, respectively. I believe the “interaction with nature” systems have only the Fuel and Focus components, and non-Catalytic “people with magic” systems add a User. IMO, the Catalytic systems have all four magical components and work as follows: A. The User consumes a Catalyst, like metals, Stormlight or body water. B. The Catalyst causes a Shard’s power to “begin [and ‘keep running’] an Investiture” of the User (BoM Ars Arcanum – “On the Three Metallic Arts – Allomancy.”) The Investiture ends when the User fully consumes the Catalyst. C. The Focus determines which power Invests the User. D. The User’s mind then directs the Invested power to “shape” the desired magical effect. Specific Systems @SpoolofWhool’s post includes examples of how WET applies to some magic systems. After quoting Spool’s WET examples, I suggest how Re-WET would apply to the same systems. Allomancy: The User is the Allomancer. I think the metal they burn is both a Catalyst and a Focus. Any Allomantic metal will act as a Catalyst to enable the Allomancer to Invest himself with Preservation’s power. The specific metal chosen will act as a Focus to determine the specific power the Allomancer Invests himself with – rioting, soothing, leeching, etc. IMO, the Allomancer himself shapes the power’s specific effect – how and when to use that power to riot, soothe or leech. While metal Catalysts are consumed in Allomancy, its Fuel is Preservation’s power. Feruchemy: The User is the Feruchemist. He directs Feruchemy’s magical effect when he chooses to time-shift an attribute. IOW, I think the conversion of “some of themselves into investiture” is Feruchemy’s magical effect, not its Fuel. I think the Fuel that causes this magical effect is the Feruchemical gene, the Feruchemist’s “end-neutral” internal Investiture. I believe even “end-neutral” Feruchemy consumes a “fuel” to make the magic. IMO, Brandon confirms this when he says “end-neutral” systems rely on a “facilitating power.” I believe this “facilitating power” keeps the Feruchemist’s internal Investiture “end-neutral” and thermodynamically sound. I think each Feruchemical metal is a Focus for the specific power that “facilitates” time-shifting the corresponding attribute. (I discuss this more in my Fuel post.) Awakening: The User is the Awakener. Brandon says Awakening’s Focus is the visualized command. The User’s command both selects the power to Invest the User and directs that power to Awaken the object for the visualized task. “Draining color” (as I describe it below) Catalyzes Awakening and Invests the Awakener with Endowment’s power. I don’t believe Awakening’s Fuel is Breath (though maybe I missed a WoB that clearly says that). I think Breath is Endowment’s Invested “life-force,” the target of the Awakener’s command, not its Fuel. Breath held by the Invested object just gets old and loses potency like Breath does in humans. IMO Breath decay is not consumption. Color loss from simple Breath Transfers (an end-neutral magic) comes from the transferor’s reduced Breaths, lowering his Heightening. IOW, color loss from simple Breath Transfers does not act as a Catalyst that summons power. I think Awakening’s Catalyst is the Invested electromagnetic radiation (EMR) colored objects absorb. Awakening’s Fuel is the Endowment power that Catalyst summons through the Focus of the Awakener’s command. “Draining color” withdraws the absorbed Investiture from the colored object. Awakeners can easily “drain” black (fully absorbed EMR), but cannot drain white (fully reflected EMR). This Investiture withdrawal causes colored objects to turn gray, just like a Shardblade-severed limb that’s lost its connection to the soul. I theorize Endowment Invested the Tears of Edgli with vivid color because that narrows the reflected light EMR spectrum (and is more noticeable). The broader absorbed EMR spectrum remains, leaving more Investiture for an Awakener to withdraw. The “sticky” dyes the Tears create mark where an Awakener can find Investiture. Surgebinding: The User is the Surgebinder. I agree with @SpoolofWhool that it probably doesn’t matter whether the Focus is the spren or the bond, but IMO spren are Roshar’s Focus. Each “natural” (pre-Shattering) spren personifies a different power, like life, fire, or gravity. These “natural” spren can Focus “anti-gravity” power, for example, into sky eels and greatshells. I believe Radiantspren’s mixed Investitures make them dual Focuses. (I haven’t thought through whether gems are soulcasting’s additional Focus and don’t address that.) IMO Surgebinders consume Stormlight to Catalyze Honor and/or Cultivation’s Investiture of them. The Radiantspren determines which power Invests the Surgebinder. I think the Surgebinder “binds” the Surges by cognitively directing the Invested power to create some magical effect – choosing gravity’s vector or drawing a new persona. Conclusion I analyze each Re-WET component in detail in my posts on Fuel, Focus, Users and Catalysts. Those are the threads to post your comments about the components themselves. Here I try to address how I think these components fit together. In summary, All systems have Fuel and are Focused. Shards added a User and Catalyst. Mortals now can direct Their own magic effect, Like becoming a soul-forging analyst. [Da-dum… The first of several such summaries. Blame @Calderis, the Adonalsium of cosmere limericks. He inspired me to summarize theory in verse and even write an English sonnet about my three favorite fantasy writers. I enjoy writing theory, but @Calderis has added some entertaining challenges. He’s also the source of the phrase “well-established theory” I use to describe the “User-Focus-Fuel” model.] Regards!