SarChasmFiend

Crabs, Keteks, and Vorin Theology

6 posts in this topic

Strap in, this might be a weird one. This is more a theory on the themes and inspiration of the world rather than anything having any bearing on the way the story may unfold. That said, I begin. 
 

so I’m on my third reread of SA. My life and personal psychology have directed me towards audiobooks as my main source of consuming the written word, therefore I have not actually read the books with my own eyes, which In this case is important. It was not until my second read through that I began to catch the importance of symmetry. Not seeing the names left me with a random set of syllables to hear, rather than a pattern of symbols to read. So when Kabsil tells Shallan about how her name is perfectly Vorin, it stuck out the second time and I began to look more deeply. It was then that I noticed all of the Heralds naming conventions etc, and then that I put that in conjunction with the keteks in my mind. Shortly after someone pointed out that the hava has a similar function, as it offsets the symmetry of the person. 
 

Now, I’m a word guy. I love words, all kinds. And one of my favorite words is “cancrine” which is a *kind of synonym for “palindromic.” It means running the same forward and back. Just as a word or phrase can be cancrine (go hang a salami I’m a lasagna hog), so can a piece of music (the cancrine fugue by Bach) or poetry (a ketek). The word cancrine, at its root, means “of or relating to a crab,” as crabs can move either direction unimpeded. Which brings us back to Roshar. 
 

for one, everything is crabs. Effin crabs effin everywhere. But the HUMANS think that perfect symmetry is heresy, something they should not aspire to. Because they are not native to Roshar? Hmmmm. It also reminds me that Honor is all but symmetrical, so is it that even their God did not have a symmetrical name? 
 

This very well could be an accident on Brandon’s part, but if not, it could all be one big freaking pun about humans not being able to assimilate with Roshar because of the ecology. 
 

that is all. 

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If the word cancrine appears in a SA book, that will be all the confirmation i need. Great idea.

Now tie this to singing somehow ( since that is a huge part of the culture) and triple yahtzee

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H is a substitute for a letter, so Honor would be symmetrical.

also humans think that people named with perfect symmetry is being too proud, or more Divine then their station 

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Ever read the crab cannon from Hofstadter's GEB?  What's weird to me though is how crabs are the most asymmetrical animal, one giant claw sticking out.  

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11 minutes ago, ConfusedCow said:

Ever read the crab cannon from Hofstadter's GEB?  What's weird to me though is how crabs are the most asymmetrical animal, one giant claw sticking out.  

Bro. Hofstadter is my favorite ever. I’ve actually been lucky enough to email back and forth with him. GEB is my all time favorite book (until SA 10, I’m sure. Hahaha)

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4 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

H is a substitute for a letter, so Honor would be symmetrical.

also humans think that people named with perfect symmetry is being too proud, or more Divine then their station 

It just occurred to me that this could be where that convention originates, in-world. The softer letter that breaks the symmetry of the Gods name. And to be as symmetrical as that is heresy.

I love this. 

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