Arsteel

Cultivation's failsafe

14 posts in this topic

So, Cultivation, posing as the Nightwatcher, "blessed" Taravangian with the ability to

1: partially outthink Rayse.

2: bear Odium.

What if Cultivation is still in control over Taravangian's smart/emotional days? 

Could she make him suddenly intelligent for a few days, thereby removing his Connection to the Shard of Odium?

This would be a great failsafe for Cultivation if Taravodium's plans run, well, contrary to her own.

Taravodium will likely consider this and attempt to remove his Connection to Cultivation, but it's possible this would make him revert to his original, pre- Nightwatcher visit personality and severe him from Odium anyway.

In any case, I believe Cultivation's plans stretch much further than we might have thought.

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Yeah, this is one of the things that came up after that happened in RoW. There have been a few questions to Brandon about it, but they've all been RAFO'd so far, with the caveat that we will get an answer at some point in the fifth book about it. I agree that Cultivation's plans are probably deeper than surface-level though. 

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Personally, I seriously doubt that she now has the ability to do that given his level of power 

I think Cultivation gambled a few times in this series. Dalinar was a "win", Lift is still in the balance I think as we don't know the "why" of why Cultivation made her metabolize food to stormlight, and T I think was a hedge at best. 

She "won" in that he was able to defeat/take Odium's shard. But... I think ultimately she "lost" because T is FAR more dangerous with the Shard than she could foresee/anticipate

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Cultivation seems to "take" something, and seems to think having a 'piece" of Dalinar would be useful. It would be interesting to see what having a piece of Odium's vessel might mean. 

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On 7/11/2022 at 11:12 AM, Green Hoodie Mistborn said:

Personally, I seriously doubt that she now has the ability to do that given his level of power 

I think Cultivation gambled a few times in this series. Dalinar was a "win", Lift is still in the balance I think as we don't know the "why" of why Cultivation made her metabolize food to stormlight, and T I think was a hedge at best. 

She "won" in that he was able to defeat/take Odium's shard. But... I think ultimately she "lost" because T is FAR more dangerous with the Shard than she could foresee/anticipate

I disagree that T is anything Cultivation didn't expect him to be.

I also disagree that there has to be any failsafe implanted into the new holder of Odium. Rayse was an unstable entity holding the most dangerous Shard. Taravangian is a much more stable Shard holder and an improvement to that situation. It's possible Cultivation just wanted to stabilize the holder of Odium. I'm not saying she hasn't put anything in place to use against T. I'm saying that it would fit her personality and the story to NOT have anything in place and that simply replacing Rayse was the endgame.

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26 minutes ago, Leuthie said:

I disagree that T is anything Cultivation didn't expect him to be.

I also disagree that there has to be any failsafe implanted into the new holder of Odium. Rayse was an unstable entity holding the most dangerous Shard. Taravangian is a much more stable Shard holder and an improvement to that situation. It's possible Cultivation just wanted to stabilize the holder of Odium. I'm not saying she hasn't put anything in place to use against T. I'm saying that it would fit her personality and the story to NOT have anything in place and that simply replacing Rayse was the endgame.

Still so odd to me she didnt try to splinter the shard. If no one picked it up, then the whole problem would be over. It seems she really needs Odium to "do" something with her in the future. 

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On 7/12/2022 at 0:30 PM, Leuthie said:

I disagree that T is anything Cultivation didn't expect him to be.

I also disagree that there has to be any failsafe implanted into the new holder of Odium. Rayse was an unstable entity holding the most dangerous Shard. Taravangian is a much more stable Shard holder and an improvement to that situation. It's possible Cultivation just wanted to stabilize the holder of Odium. I'm not saying she hasn't put anything in place to use against T. I'm saying that it would fit her personality and the story to NOT have anything in place and that simply replacing Rayse was the endgame.

By her own words, she wasn't sure what even Dalinar would do with her pruning. Maybe it was a lie, maybe note. Maybe she knew what to expect from T as a human

I don't think she really knows what to expect from TOdium honestly

As far as her motivations, it really depends on if the Intent is in control or the Vessel at this point. If Cultivation Intent is in charge, then her goal is to prune and cultivate all things, other Shards included with no end goal other than growth and continued cultivation (my opinion). That would include the Shard of Odium. Rayse was out of control, growing wild, so it needed to be pruned/cultivated. 

TOdium is a whole new thing and I think is going to end up being a "blight" which she didn't foresee coming honestly.

We'll see though!

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On 7/12/2022 at 2:57 PM, teknopathetic said:

Still so odd to me she didnt try to splinter the shard. If no one picked it up, then the whole problem would be over. It seems she really needs Odium to "do" something with her in the future. 

I don't know if Cultivation could do that. Maybe, of course, but it seems contrary to her Shard's focus and is also relatively hard to do/requires specific knowledge to do. I agree that the new Odium is likely to be a problem but not necessarily one that she could really head off. Shards seem not to color inside the lines, so this might be more or less always true.

 

On 7/9/2022 at 6:05 AM, Arsteel said:

Could she make him suddenly intelligent for a few days, thereby removing his Connection to the Shard of Odium?

I'd believe that Cultivation's plans are more expansive than we know, but I doubt that she has any meaningful control over Taravangian or Odium. With a Shard attached to him Taravangian's intelligence and emotionality are probably much less important than they were when he was just a man. I can only offer guesses about what would happen if Cultivation could do this, but I suspect it would change some of the nature of the Shard/Vessel combination rather than forcing the Shard to become unharnessed. Kelsier's experience in Secret History does offer some tantalizing suggestions in the direction of your idea, though...

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1 hour ago, Returned said:

I'd believe that Cultivation's plans are more expansive than we know, but I doubt that she has any meaningful control over Taravangian or Odium. With a Shard attached to him Taravangian's intelligence and emotionality are probably much less important than they were when he was just a man. I can only offer guesses about what would happen if Cultivation could do this, but I suspect it would change some of the nature of the Shard/Vessel combination rather than forcing the Shard to become unharnessed. Kelsier's experience in Secret History does offer some tantalizing suggestions in the direction of your idea, though...

I would like to know if she took a piece of Taravangian like she took a piece of Dalinar. If she truly has a piece of Taravangian, she might have an advantage there. She did say having a piece of Daliar was useful, so .... And to that, if Dalinar becomes Odium's champion but Cultivation "has" a piece of him, what does that do? 

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Posted (edited)

49 minutes ago, teknopathetic said:

I would like to know if she took a piece of Taravangian like she took a piece of Dalinar. If she truly has a piece of Taravangian, she might have an advantage there. She did say having a piece of Daliar was useful, so .... And to that, if Dalinar becomes Odium's champion but Cultivation "has" a piece of him, what does that do? 

Agreed, it's very cryptic. The dialogue surrounding her talking about how it would "do [her] well to have a part of [him]" suggests to me that she's referring to Dalinar's capacity to be grown and nurtured, and then actually being cultivated by her.

I don't think we know enough to say that it's a really concrete parallel, but I think of it like Kelsier being described as having a lot of Ruin in him. That had Shard-level implications, and was important for how he and Shards interacted (Preservation, at least). With what little information we have I imagine that the "part" of Dalinar Cultivation is claiming is the capacity for change and development, which would prevent him from being only Odium's champion, forever. He would still be able to grow into something different, or at least more complex.

I don't have strong feelings one way or another if this would work with another Shard, though certainly Cultivation cultivated Taravangian much like she did Dalinar. My above reasoning would suggest that she does indeed have some portion of Taravangian, and especially in the period immediately after taking up a Shard a Vessel still has more of their own identity and motivation than much later, when they're much more strongly influenced by the Shard. If she's going to intercede with the new Odium I would suspect that that's the angle she'll take. The Stormfather described the old Odium as unchanging, and also described Cultivation as able to attack and harm Odium (though not necessarily interested in doing so). Change might be her method of action as much as a spear or sword is for a soldier.

But at the same time Cultivation has held her Shard for a very long period and may be less able to resist or bend its nature than we might think. Preservation couldn't harm someone for any purpose, even to enable far larger scale preservation than the thing he would harm. It's very possible that Cultivation is totally committed to causing things to grow and develop, not necessarily to grow and develop towards an outcome she desires (by which I mean she may prefer to promote growth even if that doesn't serve her purposes while inhibiting growth would). It strikes me as being as likely as anything else that her motivations centered around causing Odium to change and develop just because she can't abide stagnation, though her skill at seeing the future argues against random, arbitrary action. And her manifestation as Cultivation, rather than something like Growth, also strongly suggests purposeful development rather than development for its own sake. Mysteries abound.

Edited by Returned
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Posted (edited)

33 minutes ago, Returned said:

But at the same time Cultivation has held her Shard for a very long period and may be less able to resist or bend its nature than we might think. Preservation couldn't harm someone for any purpose, even to enable far larger scale preservation than the thing he would harm. It's very possible that Cultivation is totally committed to causing things to grow and develop, not necessarily to grow and develop towards an outcome she desires (by which I mean she may prefer to promote growth even if that doesn't serve her purposes while inhibiting growth would). It strikes me as being as likely as anything else that her motivations centered around causing Odium to change and develop just because she can't abide stagnation, though her skill at seeing the future argues against random, arbitrary action. And her manifestation as Cultivation, rather than something like Growth, also strongly suggests purposeful development rather than development for its own sake. Mysteries abound.

To me Cultivation is about destroying in order to create something new, so I believe there is an end goal to everything she does.  When Honour was alive maybe she was better able to reference him in her plans in terms of what the cultivation was building towards, but it kind of seems like she has taken a new path in recent times post Honour's death (by investing in 3 people and allowing radiant to be fueled by Cultivation-light).

The ultimate question I have is whether or not Cultivation was a part of Honour's death; Honour's corpse-shards would make AMAZING fertilizer for her garden, so to speak. If that was part of the plan, then I am more confident in Cultivation manipulating Todium. And since Cultivation seems cool with Odium continuing on and is willing to even help Todium, it seems like she is happy with how everything has progressed. 

And what does she want? A merger? Does she also believe an interstellar war is coming and she wants to use Odium's army? Does she want to merge? Cultivation + Odium = Vendetta? Does she want to free Odium and send him after Scadrial? Did she kill Honour because she foresaw the comsic war and did not think they could win if Odium were destroyed? 

All so strange. 

Edited by teknopathetic
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I could see it either way, with Cultivation's end goal to defeat to Rayse or for something beyond that with Taravangian. Personally, I think it's most likely that she considered the possibility of Taravangian still being a big problem, believes herself capable of handling him, but that Lift is her backup plan.  Most agree that Cultivation has set up Lift as a possible successor, which strikes me as the sort of failsafe Sanderson would go for.  He basically did that with Kelsier and Vin already.

As for splintering the shard, we don't know exactly how that process goes about, or if Cultivation is even aware of how to do it. Even if she did, given what happened on Threnody, we know that splintering a shard can result in some nasty consequences. Perhaps Cultivation didn't want to risk that sort of thing.

1 hour ago, teknopathetic said:

And what does she want? A merger? Does she also believe an interstellar war is coming and she wants to use Odium's army? Does she want to merge? Cultivation + Odium = Vendetta? Does she want to free Odium and send him after Scadrial? Did she kill Honour because she foresaw the comsic war and did not think they could win if Odium were destroyed? 

I doubt it. Preservation wanted to merge his shard with Ruin's, but I doubt any of the other shards want to change who they are. Those two shards are kind of an exception, since they always had kind of a complementary nature. More importantly, Preservation probably knew it was the only hope of stopping Ruin permanently.

 

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I think Cultivation is directed growth, which can absolutely include pruning (eg Dalinar's memories). 

But I don't think the Intent is *about* destroying in order to create (IE I don't think Cultivation would prefer an option involving destruction over one that promoted an equal amount of growth without destruction).

I doubt Cultivation was involved in Honor's death, at least willingly as she still loved him per WoB. (Odium engineering some kind of Shardic Intent clash against the Vessels' will is possible, though, I guess).

The question to me is whether T-Odium's goals are counter to Cultivation. Rayse-Odium would have apparently destroyed Roshar, which absolutely would be. But T-Odium probably doesn't want to (and likely can't due to his oath to protect Kharbranth).

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All very good points, and I also agree that Taravangian's new power makes this possibility less likely. I'm not saying this is what I think will happen, just that I think it might and that Cultivation's plans are going somewhere in this direction.

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