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Found 35 results

  1. Hi! This is my first time ever posting on the Shard, I've been playing around with this theory ever since I learned about the Ashyn magic system. As a sort of preamble, I want to first just describe the overarching idea of this theory. 1) Voidbinding is a viral-based "hemalurgy" or spiritweb-stabbing magic. 2) The Shin have or had Voidbinding, practiced or no. As in, they are capable of being infected by a sort of viral disease empowered by Odium that attaches to one's spiritweb to give them power. Or at least, I believe that, originally, Voidbinding would do this. 3) Ashynians originally hoped to invade Roshar with the disease. 4) The Heralds were or are Voidbinders. We can blame the Ashynian magic system for their insanity, as well as Szeth's. Yes, okay. Now that we have my probably rather insane ideas. Let's dig in! Also a brief reminder all of this is insane speculation and a lot of it is me extrapolating information. I want to explain what I mean by Voidbinding, and how I describe the magic in this system. First, Odium sends a sort of proto-spren (a splinter of himself, potentially more like proto-Unmades) to attach themselves to a host. In order to "bond", the proto-spren begins a strong infection of the spiritweb in a way much like Hemalurgy. I believe this magic system was inspired by trunelife and the Sho Del on Yolen. A sort of extraterrestrial magic system that is capable of infecting anyone but also able to move between planets without forming a stable Connection. Essentially, it would corrupt as it spread to grant species of people incredible power, only to also infect them with Odium's powerful emotional control. Indeed, it could also explain why Ambition was first to go-- the Shattering was probably accompanied by a Dawnshard for Change to forcibly create a new power for himself. At the height of the system, Ashynians could use unrestrained Surges that were modeled after Yolen's own magic system (I also operate on the belief that Surgebinding comes from Yolen-- at least as a basic concept). I think Odium messed up a bit, and what ended up being created was a sort of Hemalurgic spike that'd destroy the spiritweb once it left the host, if it ever did. Indeed, we can later see how the influence of an Unmade on an area can disrupt one's spiritweb; I forgot the WOB, but it essentially stated that there was a relation to hearing screaming voices and Unmade influence. As a secondary theory, I also want to say that original Fused cognitive shadows are those who were initially Voidbinded. Essentially, they became infected enough that the disease attached to their spirits, making them Invested (Infected/Invested, same thing) enough to remain as Cognitive Shadows by Odium's desire. Of course, the constant cycle of rebirth has made the deeply spiritual disease continuously tear open their sanities. And then, and I know I don't have any information on this, once Odium realized that the humans were turning on him, he rescinded his powers from the cognitive shadows he had as his champions and turned them all into the Unmade we know today-- now Frankenstein's monsters of living beings. The remnants of this magical disease left on Ashyn has now evolved due to it not having access to Odium's power, now requiring the full absorption of the health of Ashynian people to survive. 1: The Shin had/have Voidbinding. Yes, I'm sorry, right off the bat I need to say that I think the people of Shinovar have Voidbinders, and that we'll finally see it in the next book. Not only is Shinovar the place most unlike the rest of Roshar, and due to it also being the one place where the Ashynians were originally supposed to be, I believe them to be inherently connected to the Voidbinding magic system. At the very least, the Shin have proven to be repeatedly war-like in the past, perhaps a bit Odious, at least to me. The fact that it is more of a throwaway line leads me to want to place even more emphasis on it. I think the fact that the Shin even attempted any sort of excursion into Roshar despite being isolationist in the present leads me to believe a large amount of influence was swaying their decision-making. Of course, it is also important, I believe, to note that the Shin also intone that there is a way to speak with stones in the same way that the Willshapers do (at least, Venli was able to do). Furthermore, Ashyn's magic had changed, and I think it is also different with the Shin-- especially since Odium seemed to have shifted his desires long after to focusing upon the Fused (which, by the fact that they kind of forcibly bond with beings, implies they, too, were kind of going through the motions of Voidbinding). Indeed, it seems odd that the Shin would have access to any sort of powers-- especially in going to reclaim the Honorblades for themselves, and having what seems to be quite a bit of cosmere awareness. So yes, they know a lot about what truly happened on Ashyn and the movement to Roshar, though the information is not completely accurate. Furthermore, without strong access to Stormlight (at least it was stated they don't use it much), I wanna assume they draw upon Voidlight to perform their magic. The Unmade influencing the Shin leaders is most likely also giving them these illness-like bonds, binding to their emotions and giving them powers. This influence probably leaves tears in the spiritweb, and Szeth's being in the higher echelon of Shin society would have inevitably given him access to the Ashynian illness. Indeed, this would leave a tear in his spiritweb, which would set him up for a Nahel bond, yada yada. 3: Ashynian offensive Okay, now that I've set up that the Shin could have this magic system's remnants floating around, I move to also explain how an invasion of Roshar could have went down. The humans crash down in Shinovar. The singers gave them the space to work with, but the Ashynians, probably influenced by the Ambition-side of their diseases, sought to spread out much further. To become Connected to Roshar, the Ashynian viruses spread out and infect singers left and right, subtly nudging them to Odium while also gaining a Connection to Roshar. I think it also may help to explain how the humans began to wane off of Odium's influence soon thereafter, probably due to the kindness of the singers, while the violence of their diseases affected the singers negatively. The two sides shifted due to the initial bonding of power. I think the reason why people think that mental disorders are requisite for a Nahel bond start here-- where the humans were afflicted with disorders upon removing themselves from the viral diseases. 4: The Heralds were Voidbinders I feel like this one goes without saying, but I want to say how it pertains to their insanity. If the Ashynian disease was a hemalurgic-sort of tear in the spiritweb, then anyone who forcibly removes themselves from it will become massively open to the influence of any Shard or Investiture like a spren. I don't think that the effects of it would kill the user, as it would mostly have torn at sanity and sense of identity. As such, it would explain why the Heralds and their agreement with Honor was formed; to fill in the holes left by them removing themselves from Ashyn's magic, Honor granted them Honorblades to mimic the powers they had on Ashyn. These blades, bonding with the spirit, allowed them to be generally safe from the influence of the Ashynian viruses as they fought against Odium. The Oathpact, being formed, hopefully was to also be used to give them sanity. However, these holes would only grow with more stress upon the spirit, and they began to become less and less sane. We can see today how most of the Heralds have ran away from their original personality traits, or have regressed. I think Nale is a special case because he was able to bond with a highspren; the opening of his spiritweb was filled up again by him also bonding himself with a spren and flying up to the Fifth Ideal to avoid the utter insanity associated with the savantism gained from being an Voidbinder. Furthermore, I think Taln was able to generally avoid giving in because he was both insanely based and badass but also because he never had the Ashynian sickness. He wasn't already broken down by the powers of the sickness, so he was generally able to avoid being torn apart as easily-- and in fact his connection to Honor was the strongest. I think he's still suffering from insanity induced by torture, but the fact that he maintained his oath is telling of a lack of Odium's effect. Sorry for making this so long. I have a lot of ways I could go with this theory, like, I'll probably post more later. But I just wanted to get this out there and discuss what I had made. Thanks
  2. I was recently playing dreidel with my family, and came across an interesting coincidence. In case you don't know, dreidel is a spinning top game with four different sides. Each is represented by a symbol (Hei, gimmel, nun, and shin). The symbol that was interesting to me was the one called "Shin". What you do when you roll a Shin, is to add one coin to the pot. In shinovar, there is a saying that "blessed is he who adds", and I can't help but wonder if Brandon got the name (and at least some of the characteristics of this culture) from the dreidel game. Thoughts? Has this been posted before and I couldn't find it?
  3. Given that Nightblood was able to (seemingly quite easily) utterly destroy a Vessel, but only managed to nick Ishar's Honorblade, Honorblades must involve truly staggering concentrations of Investiture. Large amounts of Investiture left lying around tend to start forming minds of their own. Were Shin "given to the Honorblades" to prevent sapience from manifesting in the Honorblades, which might have possibly completely disrupted the Oathpact? Further, families share deep bonds that no random group of people would have, so perhaps having the Honorblades held by minds with deep interpersonal bonds was also serving to somehow prop up the Oathpact. Any merit to that as a possible reason for Shin families being "given to the Honorblades"?
  4. Say something if I'm just stupid, but I never noticed that literally everyone on roshar was slightly Asian (eyes) and that shin were white people until I read this- Questioner I know you went on mission in Korea, as did I, did anything come from that? Brandon Sanderson Yeah...(this is a break, not him pausing in speech) I don't know if you've read The Way of Kings… I don't know if you know but everyone's Asian, right? Like Szeth, the white dude, is the one that looks weird them. And that's just because-- It was partially influenced by that.
  5. theory

    So Yelig-nar has always intrigued me as an unmade, as he allows whoever bonds to him access to all the ten surges, which can create a very powerful warrior out of a man, but when Amaram bonded to him, he used very few of the surges he had access to and used them clumsily, clearly inexperienced. So while I still thought Yelig-nar was a powerful unmade, it would be very difficult to find a host that could actually use him to his full potential, so i thought who would be a worthy host of Yelig-nar, and I remembered that Szeth trained in all ten surges because of the honorblades. Now I don't think Szeth is going to become Yelig-nar, but Szeth cannot be the only one who trained with all the honorblades, so there must be another Shin who has trained in all ten surges, making them the perfect host to bond with Yelig-nar. What do you think of this theory?
  6. Hi all, 1st post so bare with me. Could the Shin have access to future sight? Here are the things leading me to think its possible: Firstly there is the Shin sailor from the rattles, that seems to have knowledge of what future sight looks like. He says he knows what the gatherers are doing and will not speak the truths he sees. Next there is the shin man in the CR who uses some kind of artifact to give readings. These last few are purely speculative. I can't recall seeing the reason Szeth thought the KR and voidbringers had returned (The reason he was made truthless). Could there be other artifacts the Shin have besides the 9 honor blades, such as the man in the CR had? Also, was it only coincidence that a Shin man was in the right place at the right time to collect the honor blades in dalinars vision? If I remember correctly he didnt hesitate in gathering them. Go easy on me. Thanks
  7. Its documented somewhere a lack of Spren in Shinova and most of us theorise the Shin have most of the lost shard blades and plates. If we're correct in assuming the Shin do indeed have these shards, im wondering if this corelates to the lack of Spren in Shin-land? E.g. In the cognitive realm Shinova is like the Spren Graveyard with hundreds if not thousands of dead eyes and the equivalent of shard plate dead eyes (if that's even a thing). So theres an unspoken anathema on Spren going to Shinova hence the lack of Spren..? Thoughts?
  8. 1. WoK chapt. 28. dalinar digs a letrine pit using his shardplate. he spends a while wondering why shardplate is only used for fighting, and not for farming or building... why didn't the randiants build shard shovels or picks? - he asks himself 2. the very next chapter is I-4. rysn and her basbsk are trading with an important shin man. rysn thinks he has a lot of slaves. her basbsk corrects her, telling her they are his gaurds. the shin treat warriors as the lowest of society, trading them in ownership with rocks.. he goes on to tell her that farmers are reveared in shin society. and the noble man they are trading with is a farmer. "you mean a land owner?"- Ryan asks. "no, just a farmer"- he replies... in fact, outsiders are not even allowed anywhere near the shin farming villages... supporting ideas : 3. Dalinars vision at Feverstone keep tells us there are many missing sets of shardblade and plate. 4. the shin collected most of the honorblades, is it a stretch that they might have collected regular shardblades too? I've seen this going around on the forum that the shin might have the extra shards. 5. in WoK I-6 - there is a man "recruiting" Szeth on taravangians behalf; he says Szeth is wasted potential like a "shardblade used to cut vegitables" , szeth replies - "you think like a "cukari", he who adds is to be reveared, I am he who takes away." I'm paraphrasing these parts. but any thoughts on this? I jumped to the conclusion that the shins "noble" class of farmers might be using shards? any other conclusions?
  9. So do we know anything else about shins and possible scadrial relations? or is this just a rabbit hole?
  10. Ok, so this really has no impact on the story whatsoever, but it’s been on my mind. In Oathbringer, Jasnah reveals that Roshar originally belonged to the listeners, and that humans eventually invaded. Someone (I think it was also Jasnah, though it might’ve been Odium) said that Shinovar was given to the humans as a place where they could live in a similar environment as their native one, where the humans plants could grow and they could thrive. Most obviously moved on from Shinovar, and settled elsewhere. However, if Shinovar was the equivalent of their Rosharan homeland, then why are the Shin short compared to everyone else? Seeing as the Shin would have no obvious catalyst for a significant change in stature (their environment was the same on Roshar as it was before Roshar), the other Rosharans would have had to have grown in order to adapt to their new environment, though the reason they would need to adapt why remains a mystery to me. A second theory is that before leaving their previous planet, the humans had different nationalities, and this carried over when they took over Roshar. This theory seems the most likely, and would explain why the people in the homeland are comparatively short, as they wouldn’t accurately represent the entire pre-Roshar population. Another possibility is that the different countries were founded by a few people, and the different genes carried through generations. This theory makes less sense, however, as the humans probably had to fight the listeners in order to take over Roshar, and that couldn’t be done by a few people, meaning that a few peoples’ similar genes couldn’t control the genes of the whole country.
  11. Szeth has decided that, if Dalinar allows, he will "cleanse the Shin of their false leaders" Now, we know that he was named Truthless because he made the claim that the "voidbringers" were returning. With the Listeners and the Fused reclaiming their land, Szeth has determined that his statement was true and that the Stone Shamenate was wrong. However, I propose that the Shamenate knew that the "Voidbringers" were, in fact, humans., and thus could not "return" because they never left; making it technically true that Szeth's claim was false. I expect this to be a complication of his quest. As a corollary, I believe the Shin to be a group of humans who attempted to begin following the Listener religion upon their arrival. Hence their language being included in the dawnate group, their reverence for stone and spren, and their remaining secluded in the area created for them on Roshar. That last point requires an explanation of the Shin Conquest and possibly some explanation of why only humans lacking the epicanthic fold decided to do this. For the Shin Conquest I'm on board with the theory that its primary purpose was to recover an honorblade or shardblade until a better theory presents itself. For the epicanthic fold distinction, is it possible that Ashyn and Braize had distinct groups of humans and each had a cataclysm as a result of surges. Perhaps Shin are from one planet and other Rosharn humans from the other. Thoughts?
  12. Ok, this might take a little bit of time, but it's worth the preamble I think. Known facts: The Eile stella, written in dawn chant tells of the advent of the voidbringers, a people from a different planet whom the Gods of Roshar commanded the sentient beings who wrote the stella to take in. These voidbringers destroyed there home planet (most likely Ashyn) somehow through the use of the surges These people brought their god (Odium) with them. Humans are referred to by the stormfather as Sons of Honor (Kaladin, Dalinar, all very Alethi) There is an inworld myth told by Hoid about the origin of the Natan people's blue skin where a princess begets a child with Nomon, the blue moon associated with Honor. The yellow void spren have shin like eyes or have strange eyes. (Yellow also being the trademarked color of Odium) The void spren that Kaladin talks to, Yixli, is always walking on stone. When she wants to get up to eye-level with Kaladin she pushes herself up on a column of stone. The shin are a peaceful people that keep to there own section of Roshar, and use humility like Herdazians use bragging. The most revered citizens in Shinovar are the farmers, the least revered are those who pick up weapons (pretty interesting taboo, this). Mentioned in the same breath by Gavilar at the feast where Dalinar meets Evi for the first time are Sadees the Sunmaker, hopeful Alethi uniter of all Roshar and Shubreth-son-Mashalan, which I am pretty sure is a shin name. Now to add the suppositional meat to the known skeleton of the theory (the following is all total speculation): Suppose that when Honor and Cultivation invested Roshar, each brought their favorite form of life to this planet. Honor brought humans from Yolen, and maybe Cultivation used her investiture to create divergent forms of life (based loosely on humans) for Roshar. Honor is father to the humans and Cultivation created the Aimians, modified the human stock slightly to produce the Thaylens (might have a thing for long eyebrows) and the blue skinned Natans. The Singers were already on Roshar, they had been since the planet was created/formed by Adonalsium, but after the first influx of sapient higher forms of life, they interbred with the humans, resulting in Horneaters and Herdazians. The horneaters interbred with the original sons of honor (the alethi lets say) and you get the variety of life as it currently exists on Roshar. So, the humans and the Singers shared Roshar before the Voidbringers came, before the people of Odium who destroyed their own planet with powers they were unable to control, before the Shin came to Roshar. To accommodate the refuges from a broken planet, Cultivation carved out a special section of Roshar, and made it more like the planet that they fled, causing the Misted mountains to rise to block the force of the Highstorm, creating Shinovar. After resettling on Roshar, the Shin realized what their previous actions had done to their home planet and renounced the power of surges and instead developed a Pacifist religion, honoring mostly the shard of Cultivation, because her actions of Terra forming roshar (and creating Shinovar) saved her people. The shin, though, brought their god with them, and over time void spren began to develop as all cognitive thought on Roshar manifests as sentient beings. The voidspren realized that they could use the Gemhearts of the Singers to allow their god Odium to once again influence the world. Conflict always happens, borders are always disputed, ethnic diversity leads to ethnic clashing. War began to stir, and in this new war the Singers were granted forms of power by the now sapient voidspren. Honor saw what was at stake and splintered his power to create the honorblades for the heralds to marshal the forces of Roshar to stop the forces of Odium (at this point these would have probably been the Ancients of the Listeners and some secret Sect of Shin Odium worshipers, and maybe some secret Thaylen sect heavily into the Passions religion). Desolations come and Desolations go, the shin continue on in their pacifist non-interventionist mode (like switzerland, I wonder if there are nice places to ski in Shinovar), and the further removed they are from the initial planetary exodus, the more they begin to believe the lie that they are truly the peace loving people that tried to reforge themselves to be. What if Dai-Gonarthis, mentioned in the quote below: Is really head of the supreme council of the shin? The plural their implies a group, but Dai-Gonarthis is probably a god spren, one of the 3 god sprens perhaps, and possibly this Odium god spren can only bond to a shin. This might be the possible positive side to what otherwise seems like a HORRIBLE 5th ideal for Szeth (his crusade ideal) to cleanse the Shin of their false leaders as long as Dalinar Kholin agrees. There are a ton of unanswered questions after OB, but the shin have always struck me as, as Aragorn would say paraphrased a little, a people that look fair and feel foul. I have some ideas about how this all ties into the recreance, but want to see what you all think about this first.
  13. So first Szeth believes that the radiants are coming back. This somehow leads to him being exiled, deemed "Truthless" which, according to societal convention, binds him as a slave to the wielder of a rock. But then why would he be given the Honorblade for the Windrunners if he was being punished or removed from society. Either something is missing/wrong with Szeth's recollection or the Shin are extremely odd.
  14. [Originally posted on r/stormlightarchive, and figured that I'd bring it over here. The more I think about it, the more interested I am in Shinovar. I think they've got some serious secrets. A poster pointed out a WoB that confirms Rosharan humans originated on Ashyn] Another random observation that's probably been noticed, but I haven't seen on here. (That kinda spiraled into a general post about the Shin) The going theory at the moment is that Humans in the Roshar system originated on Ashyn - WoB states that there was a cataclysm there, with small pockets of civilisation living in cloud cities as a result. Hence, the idea that humans caused said cataclysm and jumped ship to Roshar (planet) with their advanced tech/powers. We know that when humans first arrived on Roshar, they were given the Shin lands in the West because it was most like their natural habitat and they could raise horses, chickens etc. I just noted that the word Shin is very similar to the back end of Ashyn. If humans were introducing themselves on another planet, they would likely introduce themselves as the 'Ashyn' people. Over millennia, that would boil down to Shin. This also ties back to the Shin culture and the amount of control they (likely) secretly hold over the cosmic Shard war raging in the background, implying that their histories passed down hold a lot more accurate knowledge that the rest of Roshar had available. The aversion to walking on stone has been noted previously as a possible link to the fact that the Dawnsingers owned the rocky portions of the continent, and might actually have developed as a belief due to the guilt surrounding the original voidbringers' actions. Another interesting point is the circumstances of Szeth's Truthless stamp. He claimed that the voidbringers were returning. If the Shin hold a better history than the rest of humanity, then Szeth's original claim might be interpreted oddly. If he was referring to the 'modern' voidbringers (the Fused), then his story plays out unchanged - he saw a crisis coming and was ignored. Now, if we look at the ancient use of the word voidbringer, then he may have been referring directly to Radiants or any forms of power. I'm having trouble putting this one together in my head, because I might have been missing some nuances in Szeth's lines. He flips out when there's a possibility of Kal being Radiant, as this would confirm his suspicion of the return of voidbringers. Without the revelations of Oathbringer, this was read as Radiants returning providing indirect proof that modern voidbringers were going to be stomping about soon. Going by the ancient definition, he may have predicted the return of ancient voidbringers with Kaladin as direct proof of their return. All of this has to go through a few layers of culture and Shin development. If the Ashyn histories were preserved to the point that knowledge of the first desolation remains, then we would have to wonder how pervasive this knowledge would be. The way that Sanderson writes religion, I would assume that the general populace is completely unaware of this information and holds to their devout beliefs as a matter of culture. In this scenario, the higher up members of Shin culture (the council who exiled Szeth) would have more context to their religion - possibly holding knowledge from before the move to Roshar, but more likely having gaps in their knowledge due to the sheer time passed since then (and repeat Desolations). I can't speculate on whether Szeth would have been privy to this information, but don't recall any great surprise when Nale drops the voidbringer revelation on him. Szeth just doesn't seem to react to much with surprise though. In terms of how Szeth gained his knowledge in the first place without leaving Shinovar - I think that comes down to his training with the Honorblades. Discounting the possibility of seeing the future (just because Odium influencing him here seems a little off to me) multiple Radiant orders have experienced visions of the present day (scrying?). Kaladin's storm riding visions showed him Ash scratching eyes. Shallan had an instance where she accidentally drew the sailors washing up on a shore, but in Oathbringer she did another drawing that seemed to confirm this ability (can't remember exactly when - maybe while she was still in Urithiru?). These seem like Order-specific perks that we don't know transfer with Honorblades. Another option is that Szeth did something unusual regarding the Honorblades and gained knowledge that way, something along the lines of wielding multiple blades at once during his training. Questions that would help guide this thinking: 1. How open is the Shin religion among its members with its information/history? Does even the lowest warrior know as much as the highest councilmember? 2. Does every Shin train with the Honorblades, just the warriors, or a select subset of warriors? 3. Have the Shin been known to use parshmen slaves? I don't recall any being mentioned in Vstim's trade in WoK, but Rysn was focused on the warriors being dressed so poorly. TL;DR - The Shin know things, man, and they're not sharing. And Ashyn=Shin over time. Edit: A quote from Szeth's interlude in WoR (I-10) - This is immediately post his first clash with Kaladin, and he is standing atop Urithiru contemplating the fact that his Truthless status might be in error: "He had fought an impossibility. A man with Stormlight, a man who knew the storm within. That meant... problems. Years ago, Szeth had been banished for raising the alarm. The false alarm, it had been said. The Voidbringers are no more, they had told him. The spirits of the stones themselves promised it. The powers of old are no more. The Knights Radiant are fallen. We are all that remains. All that remains... Truthless." Later, on contemplating his inefficiency with Stormlight: "Too imperfect a body. The Knights Radiant... they'd been said... they'd been said to be better at this... like the Voidbringers." Time to re-read Nale's discussion with him over the Battle of Thaylenar. (To be continued!) Edit 2: Nale/Nin/aboshi fills Szeth in on the Voidbringer revelation off-screen. When we return to them, they hover over the battlefield observing Amaram's forces go Thrilltastic. (Ch 116, Alone) (beginning of the Sanderson Avalanche): {Throughout this passage, there are no emotional qualifiers used to describe Szeth's speech. It reads as a purely logical discussion of lawyers deciding which code is relevant based on the parshmen being the original owners of the land.} "All along," Szeth said, "this world belonged to the parshmen. My people watched not for the return of an invading enemy, but for the masters of the house." (I read that as a surprised statement, but it is difficult to draw conclusions) {Jumping ahead, Nale asks Szeth to join him in backing the singers. Szeth's inner monologue is as follows:} "Wind rippled Szeth's clothing. All those years ago, he'd been correct. The Voidbringers had returned. Now... now he was to simple accept their rule?" Later in the fighting, Szeth continues to refer to Fused combatants as Voidbringers. I think I've pulled apart a bit of my theory a little too well. I've placed myself in the camp that Szeth was unaware of the revelations of the First Desolation prior to being informed by Nale. This still leaves the question of how much the religious leaders of Shinovar (the Shamanate) know/knew prior to the Battle of Thaylenar. Regardless, the implications of having a culture on Shinovar with very direct/lasting Ashyn influences is very interesting. I'm going to have to go through and look closely at references to the Shin so far.
  15. The Shin people of Roshar are always described as having "large eyes, like a baby." I have always taken this to mean that their eyes are unnaturally large - a quality we don't see on Earth, like Herdazian fingernails or the blue skin of Natanatan. However, I have started to think that Brandon actually might intend for Shin people to have typical, round, Caucasian eyes, while everyone else on Roshar has smaller, narrow eyes - like Asian people (I hope that's not racist somehow, it's just something I've honestly wondered while reading the book). There are two moments in OB that made me come up with this idea. First, when Dalinar encounters Odium for the first time, in Chapter 56, on page 547 in the hardcover version. And then later, when Kaladin encounters the Elantrian in Shademsar, in Chapter 97 on page 908. Now, having both Odium and an Elantrian described as "Shin" makes me immediately question that the Shin people have abnormally large eyes - because then I imagine Odium with big, baby eyes, and that really doesn't fit the image for me. I also think it's very unlikely that Rayse/Odium and this random guy from Sel have any sort of common ancestry that would account for them both looking Shin. Instead it makes me wonder if the majority of people in the cosmere have round, Caucasian eyes, except for the people on Roshar, who have smaller, East Asian eyes, so that whenever they see a non-Rosharan they immediately label them as Shin because of their eyes. This theory doesn't totally make sense, because there have been several worldhoppers - Hoid, Vivenna, Vasher - who are not mentioned as having Shin eyes. However, I think it's still definitely something to consider, and it might be a clue about the lineage of the Rosharan people and how their bloodlines changed after they expanded from Shinovar.
  16. Hello, This is an update on a theory I built in a previous post. The goal of this theory is to analyze the Shin society, based on their relation to Stone or their inherent pacifism. For those not willing to click the link I posted, I will just quote the theory into spoilers. The first part of the update is the most obvious, as we get new shiny text evidence that establishes a link between the Heralds and the Shin, which is a pretty nice confirmation that there was at least relation of worship between the Honorblades as a symbol and the Shin. Note that the Shin walking up to the Honorblades and kneeling happens after Jezrien announces that the Desolation is over. The second part is more tenuous. With Oathbringuer, we didn't get many insights into the Shin society. There was a post postuling that Stone was holy for the Shin, because it was a reliquat of the era when Parshendi forbid the Shin to walk out of the mountains. I like this a lot, as it is a phenomen that exist in our world. For exemple, the prohibition to eat pork stemed from the fact that pork spoils very fast when you can not refrigerate it. Other reasons may include the fact that unlike many other forms of livestok, pigs are omnivorous scavengers, eating virtually anything they come across, including carrion and trash. This restriction on pork carries still into our modern day, when most Muslim and Jews don't eat pork. Even in countries where the sanitory reasons are moot, the religious tabou is still strong, and the rule is still obeyed as an absolute unbreakable rule. What is the link with the Shin ? Well it is simple. Being prohibited to walk out of the mountain, they decided that the most effective and simple way to respect the agreement with the Parshendi was to create a religious interdiction to walk out of the mountains. With time, this degraded to an interdiction to walk into the mountains, and as the mountains are pretty much the only thing made of stone in Shinovar, it soon began to be seen as forbidden to walk on stone. Now, the initial reason of the prohibition has disapeared, as humanity is all over Roshar, but the tabou and religious beliefs are still present in the Shin society. As an aside, I wonder if the propention of the Shin to keep to their agreement flawlessly is what drove Honor to the humans.
  17. I looked around and I really didn't see this theory so here goes. I really believe that the reason that stone is holy for Shin was a religious way to keep the humans in their spot and not spread to take over Roshar. As on page 1043 the parshmen originally took them in willingly. I am saying they confined them to Shin by telling them not to walk on stone and it became a religious precept. I don't know why they must use soulcast metal. Maybe it was a trade embargo? Thoughts?
  18. Just asked Brandon “Are the Shin originally from Roshar” I was given a RAFO card. A follow up was is the Stone Shamanism/soulcast metal thing related to Scadrial in any way and the answer was yes. So that throws something I saw here before where Shinovar is originally part of Roshar into a slightly saner place. Also first time posting here so if this belong in general cosmetics theories, please move it there
  19. Simple theory, but profound historical Rosharan implications. The girl who looked up tells the story of a girl who climbed a wall forbidden wall only to find on the other side that she was the monster all along. On the other side they also had Stormlight, and Storms. After she climbed her people experienced these things as well. (Ostensibly). Meanwhile, we have some interesting facts. Shinovar is behind a giant wall of mountains. The storms have no power there. There are few (or no?) Spren. There may not be any Stormlight (unconfirmed). Shinovar has a typical ‘human’, Yolish environment, whereas the rest of Roshar is profoundly alien. The Shin religion holds walking on stone to be profane, meaning religious shin can never leave their valley. The Shin also see using Stormlight as illumination to be profoundly disturbing, implying it’s too holy to use like that and that they don’t have/use Stormlight. Meanwhile, the Listeners were the native rulers of Roshar, who have since been delegated to a slave species. THEORYTIME: The stone shamans prohibition against walking on stone wasn’t originally strictly religious; it was part of a deal, a treaty. Humans settled on Roshar in the Shinovar valley, likely with shardic or other magical help (dawnsingers?), but either way some serious terraforming was done to create a ‘wall’ and to give the valley soil. A deal was made with the Listeners (possibly by the humans, possibly by the shard or dawnsingers that helped set up Shinovar) that the Humans wouldn’t cross over the wall; that it would be illegal for them to walk on the bare rock or Roshar. Thus the humans (likely refugees?) were able to settle an enclave of Roshar in peace. Generations pass, and reasons may have been forgotten (or simply prohibitions and restrictions ignored). It’s possible too that new humans came to the valley of truth or any number of things. But what happened was that someone climbed the wall, and broke the treaty. After that, or as part of that, more humans came over the wall from Shinovar and began to colonize Roshar. Were they adventurers and colonists? Were they refugees fleeing ethnic discrimination by the Shin? Were they ‘truthless’, banished from the valley? Or did they just want new lands to settle? Either way, significant populations of humans crossed the mountains and began to spread throughout Roshar, stealing the fire from the gods and opening Pandora’s box, all at once. This began the millennia long struggle between Humans and Listeners (although it may have had long stretches of peace, commingling and cooperation - see the herdazians and horneaters). Likely, it is the human/listener tensions that Odium was attracted to/fanned into the flames of war and hatred, leading to the cycle of desolations where Odium would infiltrate both sides and seed them with voidbringers. Eventually, the Listeners being more naturally susceptible to Spren bonds and having more righteous anger against the humans were suborned en masse by Odium. (Alethi and Iriali are both ethnically interesting with their hair - likely they arrived on Roshar later). Tl;dr - Stone shamanism is a memory of early humanities treaties with the Listeners, and The Girl Who Looked Up is about those treaties starting to fall apart/early human forays from the valley of Truth.
  20. Hello everyone! This is my first theory post, and I will try my best to make the progress of my arguments clear. The goal of this post will be to analyze the Shin society, its relation to stone and its inherent pacifism. First let's lay out the basics that everyone knows: The Shin are extremely pacifists. Drawing blood, fighting, and worse, killing is seen as extremely tabou and if someone commits such an act, he abandons his right as a Shin "citizen"and is seen by his prior peers as someone who is less than a Shin. Stone is sacred for them. So sacred that even walking on Stone is considered a blasphemy (the first one that Szeth tells us in his narrative). Declaring that a New Desolation is on the way is totally blasphemous. These two facts will be the key of the timeline and analysis I will propose to explain them. To start the analysis, we have to go back very far. So far, that we go back to the prologue of the Stormlight Archive. The day Kalak walks a desolated battlefield, to arrive upon 7 honorblades cast out into the rock and to Jezrien. Thus, they talk, and thus a decision is made: to fade away, letting Taln to his fate. Kalak and Jezrien abandon their honorblades alongside the other, and announce to mankind that the greatest victory has been made: the cycle of Desolation is over. And so it was said that peace everlasting had been won. Let’s abandon the Heralds Point of View now, and focus on Mankind. Their gods disappeared, announcing an eternal peace. As a testament of the truth, they let their most precious tools encased in Stone. The Heralds will never need these weapons again, and therefore discarded them as useless. The very Heralds of War, that had been protecting mankind left their weapons behind, as a testament to the futility of killing now that Voidbringers are gone. My theory is that what would become the Shin society originated from there. After all, if the gods declared warring and fighting as utterly pointless, and as a testament to that left their weapons behind, what greater calling left to Man that to follow them? And thus, killing another human became seen as one of the greatest sacrilege that can be committed in the proto-Shin society. What more sacred than a life, when even the gods turned away from killing to live in anonymity? What more sacrilege that to doubt that the gods themselves bought peace, by thrusting their weapons into stone? And thus Stone is made sacred, by holding the Covenant of Everlasting Peace. Walking on Stone in Shinovar is walking on the most sacred element, that hold the peace promised by the gods. Before continuing, and to make clearer the worship of Stone in the Shin religion, let me quote Steven Erikson (yeah I’m a fanboy like that): So the proto-Shin saw Eternal Peace as the most worthy path shown by the gods. And the symbol of that peace was kept by stone. As ages came and passed, the two became slightly separated: The ritual becomes what is sacred, and most Shin may not be able to tell you why Stone is sacred. Nalan say that Szeth’s people revere the spirits of Stone, but that Him, as a Herald (of Justice) is Szeth’s god. He is even surprised that Szeth does not recognize him. That would not be the case if Nalan only appointed himself as a patron and personal god of Szeth, but it reveals us that Szeth should have made the link by himself and recognized one of his gods, that participated in the Covenant of Eternal Peace. And there we are, at the moment we have a society which revers peace to the point of extremism (which is not a bad thing is itself, mind you), would rather die than to walk on stone, and for whom announcing a Next Desolation is betraying the Greatest Gift the Gods ever left to mankind. The Shins are a model from our modern point of view: they are one of the only society known to man to have (nearly) eradicated all violence within itself. And to think that all of this is based on a lie is something that I find very tragic. They trusted their gods who told them that they were forever safe from Voidbringuers, and thus followed their deities closely by forsaking violence. But they have been deceived, for the True Last Desolation is coming.
  21. Before reading this theory, I recommend you read this one, as my theory is strongly based off it. The gist that theory it is that there is something wrong with Roshar's afterlife, and souls are unable to go to the Beyond, and instead stay in the Cognitive Realm. Anyways, here's my idea. What we know 1) Stone is important in the Shin religion. Shin will not break it, step on it, or mar it in any way. 2) When Parshmen die, other Parshmen "wrap them in linin and carry them out into the wilderness and leave them on slabs of stone". This is one of the only sapient actions they are seen doing. 3) Talenel is the Herald of war, and his essence is stone. 4) Living things are represented by flames when alive, and become like ordinary objects when dead. What I think When a sapient being dies on Roshar, their physical aspect becomes their corpse, and their cognitive and spiritual aspects go into stone. The Shin feel that breaking stone would harm the dead people, and the Parshmen want their dead to be near stone so they can move easily to it. Talanel probably isn't leading the current fight to reclaim the Tranquline Halls or their equivalent at the moment, but if he had been in the past, stone is his element and he would probably have an easy time accessing souls who are in stone. When Shallan went into Shadesmar, she was unable to tell the difference between something that had never been alive and something dead. If stone contained the cognitive and spiritual aspects of the dead, it wouldn't be bright or anything like that. Ideas?
  22. In shinovar the shin worship the gods of stone and such (source: Nale) and that got me thinking. What effect does this have on the cognitive realm for shinovar? We do know that belief is important to the creatipn of spren and that the spren are actually shaped by it (source: the interlude with the two monks measuring the flame spren) so what does this mean for shinovar? My theory is that due to the dogmatic religious nature of the shin that the "rock gods" have become extremely powerful spren and as a result the shinovar region may be more resistant to odiums influence as a result. FIN
  23. So I was thinking it over, what if all of the people and races on Roshar were once like the Shin? At some point the highstorms came, (it's possibly a perpendicularity, which means it may have come post shattering with Honor); the highstorms changed the world enough that the other races had to adapt (maybe were helped along with this process by the shards or some other powers). The Shin and their land was protected from the storms via the mountains, and didn't have to change like the rest of Roshar.
  24. Do we know where the honor blades were left by the heralds? I was under the impression that they were on a different world, so how did the Shin recover the blades? Are they world-hoppers? Is there a perpendicularity in west that only they have access to? Is it made of stone? =)
  25. I hope this isn't some already pointed. But as far as I remember Szeth didn't never attract a Spren (regular Spren like angerspren, painspren,ecc...). I know that Shinovar is a place without Spren (indeed is hard to understand if there are no spren or simply the spren are invisible there) but is it possible that its popolation is also uncapable of attracting Spren (as Connection to her homeland) ? The problem here is the only Shin out of his country (as far as I remember) is Szeth and he has some oddity with him....Therefore is not really "standard Shin". If this is true, it's possible that many Shin choose to not leave Shinovar as defence aganist expose this strange features of their people. PS: As side, enigma....Do WorldHoppers on Roshar, attract Spren ?