Letryx13

Would Vin have been Harmony?

25 posts in this topic

Ok, so I've been listening/reading the mist born books in preparation of the lost metal, and something occurred to me.  According to TSH, the reason that Sazed was able to take up both Preservation and Ruin at the same time was because he was balanced between both. Tindwyl's death instilled a sense of acceptance of death within him, which allowed him to take up Ruin, while still wanting to maintain life, allowing him to take up Preservation. The balance he represents between both is what makes him Harmony.

I remember reading a WoB that stated that if Kelsier had managed to take up both Preservation and Ruin, he wouldn't have been Harmony; he would have been Discord.  Sazed represents the balance between the two Shards, while Kelsier would represent the conflict between them.  Based on their respective personalities, I think this makes a great deal of sense.  But what if Vin had somehow managed to take up both Shards? She was both a destroyer and a preserver, something THOA makes perfectly clear, which seems to me to be another type of balance that could allow someone to take up both shards. 

Does anyone know if there is a WoB on this? It seems like the kind of question someone would have come up with a while ago.  I don't think Vin would have been Harmony or Discord, although Harmony seems much more likely than Discord.  The way she talked about life and growth just before she killed Ruin makes me think Vin would have been something like that. Maybe Life.  

What do you guys think?

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34 minutes ago, Letryx13 said:

Ok, so I've been listening/reading the mist born books in preparation of the lost metal, and something occurred to me.  According to TSH, the reason that Sazed was able to take up both Preservation and Ruin at the same time was because he was balanced between both. Tindwyl's death instilled a sense of acceptance of death within him, which allowed him to take up Ruin, while still wanting to maintain life, allowing him to take up Preservation. The balance he represents between both is what makes him Harmony.

I remember reading a WoB that stated that if Kelsier had managed to take up both Preservation and Ruin, he wouldn't have been Harmony; he would have been Discord.  Sazed represents the balance between the two Shards, while Kelsier would represent the conflict between them.  Based on their respective personalities, I think this makes a great deal of sense.  But what if Vin had somehow managed to take up both Shards? She was both a destroyer and a preserver, something THOA makes perfectly clear, which seems to me to be another type of balance that could allow someone to take up both shards. 

Does anyone know if there is a WoB on this? It seems like the kind of question someone would have come up with a while ago.  I don't think Vin would have been Harmony or Discord, although Harmony seems much more likely than Discord.  The way she talked about life and growth just before she killed Ruin makes me think Vin would have been something like that. Maybe Life.  

What do you guys think?

I don't think that Vin would be harmony exactly but would be something pretty close. Hope maybe? I would say acceptance, but that doesn't really sound like the name for a Shardic intent.

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Posted (edited)

 

On 8/11/2022 at 7:42 AM, Letryx13 said:

Does anyone know if there is a WoB on this? It seems like the kind of question someone would have come up with a while ago.  I don't think Vin would have been Harmony or Discord, although Harmony seems much more likely than Discord.  The way she talked about life and growth just before she killed Ruin makes me think Vin would have been something like that. Maybe Life.  

 

I think your right, Vin definitely wouldn't be Discord but Harmony still doesn't seem right. Life feels close to right, and that seems like a very good balance of Preservation and Ruin, or even Progress or something. I could also see something like Order or Balance, but that feels to much like preservation. She could also be something like Protection or Loyalty. We know how much Vin loves her friends and doing destroying anything to protect them, feels very Vin. I have no idea, I'm bad at Shard names.

Edited by Mr. Misting
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8 hours ago, Mr. Misting said:

I think your right, Vin definitely wouldn't be Discord but Harmony still doesn't seem right. Life feels close, maybe Progress or something. I could also see something like Order or Balance, but that feels to much like preservation. She could also be something like Protection or Loyalty. I have no idea, I'm bad at Shard names.

Either way it feels very on character to have Vin be a force of nature, that can destroy or protect anything.

Order and Balance feel too close to Harmony.  I think you've got the right idea though. She was chosen to be someone who could both destroy and protect.  And her last words to Ruin were about the purpose of life was to watch it grow, so Progress is possible.  Loyalty might be a good fit.

10 hours ago, That1Cellist said:

I don't think that Vin would be harmony exactly but would be something pretty close. Hope maybe? I would say acceptance, but that doesn't really sound like the name for a Shardic intent.

Hope would be a good name for a shard, but it doesn't quite fit Vin.  Maybe something about how she's come to accept there are good people; something she didn't believe when Kelsier found her.  Friendship maybe?

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From Wiktionary:

  • Harmony synonyms include:
    • Accord
    • Concord
    • Union
    • Agreement
  • Discord Synonyms include:
    • Tension
    • Strife
    • Dissension

 

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Posted (edited)

I had an old theory along these lines 

TLDR An intent like harmony is a really weird merging of the the concepts of ruin and preservation. Something like survival seems like it would fit better to me. 

So my take would be that Vin would find a way to blend them better, Sazed's habit of trying to balance conflicting worldviews and see the good in all of them leads him to have a much harder time letting them mix. 

Edit: The thought just occurred to me that the the concept of "life" actually is a pretty good blending of ruin and preservation. Causing entropy in your environment to maintain an equilibrium of energy in your self is a decent definition of life, at least at the cellular level. And there is textual evidence that when you mix the powers of ruin and preservation life is one of the things you can make that you couldn't before. 

Edit #2: Apologies to @Mr. Misting, I see you beat me to the life idea

Edited by Kolten
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Equilibrium? A balance struct between two things, that may not be harmonious but it is accepted, natural (usually), and peaceful enough. (Or, as the definition online says, "a state in which two opposing forces or influences are balanced.)

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I mean Harmony's intent is not Harmony, rather it is a harmonisation of Preservation and Ruin's intent. The two shards were uniquely polarised so anyone who is not balanced would be Discord; this is why Harmony also is so constrained despite being the most invested being in the Cosmere because he is always attempting to harmonise the two intents lest he fall into Discord.

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Posted (edited)

2 hours ago, Proletariat said:

The two shards were uniquely polarised so anyone who is not balanced would be Discord

Yeah I push back against that. Ruin as preservation's opposite seems polar in the mistborn era context. But (Stormlight spoilers)

Spoiler

Cultivation seems just as opposite to preservation to me. Would preservation + cultivation also have to be Harmony? 

All of these powers were blended together at some point so I don't think any are uniquely polar in that way. And I think the fact that Harmony isn't really an intent is evidence for my point, that what Sazed is attempting is not a true mixing of shardic power in the same way that (RoW spoilers)

Spoiler

warlight

is.

That kelsier would be Discord I think has to do more with the fact that he would be unable to properly mix the two shards since his holding of preservation was more of a hack anyway. He is unbalanced and I think if anyone else who was unbalanced tried to pick up both shards, they would just be unable to pick up one of them. I think Vin would have a better shot at making it happen, hence my suggestion that she would be able to become something like "Surival" 

Edited by Kolten
added context to spoiler blocks, clarified a point
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14 hours ago, Kolten said:

I had an old theory along these lines 

TLDR An intent like harmony is a really weird merging of the the concepts of ruin and preservation. Something like survival seems like it would fit better to me. 

So my take would be that Vin would find a way to blend them better, Sazed's habit of trying to balance conflicting worldviews and see the good in all of them leads him to have a much harder time letting them mix. 

Edit: The thought just occurred to me that the the concept of "life" actually is a pretty good blending of ruin and preservation. Causing entropy in your environment to maintain an equilibrium of energy in your self is a decent definition of life, at least at the cellular level. And there is textual evidence that when you mix the powers of ruin and preservation life is one of the things you can make that you couldn't before. 

Edit #2: Apologies to @Mr. Misting, I see you beat me to the life idea

I agree. Life does seem to be a good balance between them as well. And one that would suit Vin.  It seems a possibility.

4 hours ago, Use the Falchion said:

Equilibrium? A balance struct between two things, that may not be harmonious but it is accepted, natural (usually), and peaceful enough. (Or, as the definition online says, "a state in which two opposing forces or influences are balanced.)

I get what you're saying, but it feels too close to Harmony to really be different. 

3 hours ago, Proletariat said:

I mean Harmony's intent is not Harmony, rather it is a harmonisation of Preservation and Ruin's intent. The two shards were uniquely polarised so anyone who is not balanced would be Discord; this is why Harmony also is so constrained despite being the most invested being in the Cosmere because he is always attempting to harmonise the two intents lest he fall into Discord.

I don't know about that.  It's true the two shards are polar opposites, but considering that it's possible for opposites to be used together, it seems like there should be more than two ways for them to be interpreted together.  And it depends on how someone defines harmony.  Sazed says states that his goal is harmony in Era 2.

1 hour ago, Kolten said:

Yeah I push back against that. Ruin as preservation's opposite seems polar in the mistborn era context. But (Stormlight spoilers)

  Reveal hidden contents

Cultivation seems just as opposite to preservation to me. Would preservation + cultivation also have to be Harmony? 

All of these powers were blended together at some point so I don't think any are uniquely polar in that way. And I think the fact that Harmony isn't really an intent is evidence for my point, that what Sazed is attempting is not a true mixing of shardic power in the same way that (RoW spoilers)

  Reveal hidden contents

warlight

is.

That kelsier would be Discord I think has to do more with the fact that he would be unable to properly mix the two shards since his holding of preservation was more of a hack anyway. He is unbalanced and I think if anyone else who was unbalanced tried to pick up both shards, they would just be unable to pick up one of them. I think Vin would have a better shot at making it happen, hence my suggestion that she would be able to become something like "Surival" 

I don't know if I'd say that Harmony isn't Sazed's intent.  He tells Waxillium that the point to the balance he represents as a deity is harmony.  For as many people as possible to be able to make their own choices.  Survival would be a good option for Vin, but I think it's more suited to the old Vin, not the one at the end of THoA.  She seemed to care more about her friends and Elend than her own life toward the end.

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Posted (edited)

16 minutes ago, Letryx13 said:

I don't know if I'd say that Harmony isn't Sazed's intent.  He tells Waxillium that the point to the balance he represents as a deity is harmony.

Intent is a tricky word since we can only infer its definition when it comes to shards. Cue shardcast "what does it mean to have an intent?". I am okay with calling harmony the intent, I just think it is very different than the others we have seen.

I think the sticking point most people have with my theory is that they don't think the vessel can have that strong of an effect on the shard's intent. But I think that especially when mixing them, they can probably make a big difference. I think that as long as both halves of a merged shard are being expressed equally, the shards intents are satisfied. Kind of like when you are pulled toward a planet, you can only really move toward the planet, but when you are pulled between two planets you might be able to influence your path a bit more and end up in many possible stable orbits between them. 

16 minutes ago, Letryx13 said:

Survival would be a good option for Vin, but I think it's more suited to the old Vin, not the one at the end of THoA.  She seemed to care more about her friends and Elend than her own life toward the end.

Survival is just a single word summary. At the shard level I think survival of your community against a hostile world would apply well, and would work well for Vin even at the end. 

Edited by Kolten
typo
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Posted (edited)

On 8/12/2022 at 11:23 AM, Kolten said:

Cultivation seems just as opposite to preservation to me. Would preservation + cultivation also have to be Harmony?

Spoiler

 

 I think it may have been and can definitely see that, but my instinct is to rebel against that. It's like the difference or how Brandon would probably describe the difference between [RoW Shard Spoilers]

Spoiler

Honor and Valor

To me, Ruin and Preservation are pretty external, if that makes sense. You've got one positive external and one negative external, and they balance each other out. The two examples in the spoiler thing are similar. The first feels externally focused and the other internally focused. (Yes, I know they're all neutral at best. That's beside the point.) Cultivation feels internally positive while Preservation is externally positive. One grows the self while the other preserves things. In tandem, the Shards work together to Preserve the good in people and/or societies and prune out the bad in order to cultivate it into something good. (Again, this is also a visualization of the Shards at their best in my head.)

On the flip side, someone who's not as into preserving good things and likes to hurt people may use those powers to hurt others and cultivate/create new ways to hurt others. Cruelty. But those who do that haven't changed, have they? No, they've just revealed who they really are. (YMMV on whether or not this is true.)

In a purely neutral area, it's about preserving the whole while cultivating smaller changes to make it better, run faster, perfect the system that itself is perfect. Modification or maybe Refinement? (or Perfection?) Ruin and Cultivation would be similar, although I feel like that would be more of straight up Change, or maybe Adaptation. The ability to change no matter the circumstance or pressure, because change and decay are the only ways to live in the world. (And you can't ruin anything if you have nothing to ruin.)

So, Progress at best, Modification as and Cruelty at worst?

Or maybe Foster? You preserve something in order to see it grow and thrive.

 

 

On 8/12/2022 at 1:39 PM, Letryx13 said:

I get what you're saying, but it feels too close to Harmony to really be different. 

I thought the point wasn't that it was entirely different, simply that it was a different perspective on the same thing. Admittedly, I just skimmed the previous messages and didn't think about the prompt too much.

To me, Vin wouldn't be Harmony because she wasn't really at peace with herself for most of her journey. She doesn't have the perspective to see the two Shards as equal opposites or would care about that in a way. Instead, I think she'd focus on the balance of two Shards and how that relates to her as Vin and Valette. She could be both, and if she could find a balancing act between those two parts of her life, she could find a balance between the Shards. It wouldn't always be constant, but it could be equal. Therefore, Equilibrium. 

But if something different is needed, I'd posit Guard, or something closer to Kaladin's "Watcher on the Rim" ideology. Possibly something like Wax's ideology, which is why Harmony wants him as a sword. He protects as he destroys. He destroys to protect. Vin was similar. Maybe Readiness? The ability to act, in this case in order to either protect or attack.

Edited by Use the Falchion
Spoiler-tagged per request
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(stormlight spoilers, might want to add some spoiler tags to some of your post too)

Spoiler
33 minutes ago, Use the Falchion said:

 Cultivation feels internally positive while Preservation is externally positive.

Nothing that we have seen cultivation do seems particulary internal? I guess her gifts affect the individual, but that seems more thanks to the fact that they are all cognitive effects rather than that she is trying to be localized. Certainly nothing about the concept of cultivation seems internal. While I guess you can say you cultivate yourself, most uses of the word cultivate is one actor cultivating another. And she seems much more concerned with cultivating other people so far in the narrative.

If I had to to choose an intent for preservation + cultivation, I would probably go for learning or teaching. Trying to preserve the past and use it to improve the future. I could see refinement, that is pretty good.

But I think if someone like sazed picked them up, they would be able to try to make them into harmony as well, and could play much the same game that he is currently attempting with ruin and preservation. 

 

40 minutes ago, Use the Falchion said:

I think she'd focus on the balance of two Shards and how that relates to her as Vin and Valette. She could be both, and if she could find a balancing act between those two parts of her life, she could find a balance between the Shards. It wouldn't always be constant, but it could be equal. Therefore, Equilibrium. 

To me equilibrium is too close to preservation for ruin to be happy, I think someone might be able to shift the intent of preservation to equilibrium if they were holding that shard. Let processes happen but they should be a closed loop. In this sense I don't think ruin would be satisfied because there is no ending. 

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Posted (edited)

On 8/12/2022 at 4:18 PM, Kolten said:

To me equilibrium is too close to preservation for ruin to be happy, I think someone might be able to shift the intent of preservation to equilibrium if they were holding that shard. Let processes happen but they should be a closed loop. In this sense I don't think ruin would be satisfied because there is no ending. 

Possibly, but to me Equilibrium is about balance, but with less...emotional fulfillment. Equilibrium is not about reaching harmony, but about reaching homeostasis. Things can change and end or new stuff can grow and begin, and a new balance is found at the end of the day. To me that's accepting that things can and will change, and there's a way to preserve the harmony within that, but its goal is higher than keeping things the same.  Still, at the end of the day, I'm on the side of the Shards of Ruin and Preservation combining will always be something in sync (Harmony and other various shades of it) or out of sync (Discord and other various shades of it). A Shard can't really travel too far from its Intent, or so it seems*, so I wouldn't think that whatever Vin's interpretation of the combined Shards of Ruin and Preservation are, it would be too different from Harmony.

Spoiler


On 8/12/2022 at 4:18 PM, Kolten said:

(stormlight spoilers, might want to add some spoiler tags to some of your post too)

For Cultivation, I'm not that inclined to, in all honesty. It's not out of disrespect I say this, and I apologize if it comes off that way. It's because the character has been known about since at least Words of Radiance (EDIT: I found a WoB that refers to Cultivation as a "she" in 2011, so we've known about her since at least then), and her presence isn't big enough of a spoiler to warrant spoiler tags IMO. Any and all relevant information about her and the Shard's Intent come from Oathbringer and pre-RoW WoBs.

It's also difficult to spoiler tag stuff you want to quote, and since what we're talking about is a hypothetical situation, I'm not sure it warrants spoiler tags. We know what happens with Preservation by the nature of the question of the thread, so any talk about that Shard and Cultivation combining is pretty impossible and certainly hypothetical, and as such it doesn't need to be spoiler-tagged. The one RoW thing I mentioned I did add a spoiler tag to. 

 

On 8/12/2022 at 4:18 PM, Kolten said:

Nothing that we have seen cultivation do seems particulary internal? I guess her gifts affect the individual, but that seems more thanks to the fact that they are all cognitive effects rather than that she is trying to be localized. Certainly nothing about the concept of cultivation seems internal.

Again, that's just how I visualize her Intent. I'm aware that's not truly the case. 

 

On 8/12/2022 at 4:18 PM, Kolten said:

And she seems much more concerned with cultivating other people so far in the narrative.

But that change is mostly an internal one rather than a societal one, which is why I visualize it that way. She's not setting up society a certain way or seemingly approving of a certain style or code in the grand scheme of things (outside the Knights Radiant, which are all about change and growing oneself). She's interested in seeing people grow to be their best self as she sees fit, but that requires them to change themselves as well. 

EDIT: A WoB from Brandon from 2011 (super dated, I know) sort of backs this up:

Quote

Chaos

It's a little odd that Preservation would inherently give up its power to fuel Allomancy, because you'd think he would preserve himself, you know? Does that make sense?

Brandon Sanderson

Preservation, as a Shard, is about preserving life, people, and the like. Not about self. No more than Ruin is about destroying self, or Cultivation is about growing herself.

 

On 8/12/2022 at 4:18 PM, Kolten said:

Trying to preserve the past and use it to improve the future.

As a teacher, I can definitely see the positive and negative in that! Again, it's not something I'd personally think the Intent would take, but it's a good possibility.

 

On 8/12/2022 at 4:18 PM, Kolten said:

But I think if someone like sazed picked them up, they would be able to try to make them into harmony as well, and could play much the same game that he is currently attempting with ruin and preservation.

I think he'd sync with them a lot easier than what he has, but that's just me. 

 

Just as an aside, apparently Ruin and Cultivation actually be better off together, according to a 2013 WoB.

Quote

Brandon Sanderson

Technically, Ruin would be most compatible with Cultivation. Ruin's 'theme' so to speak is that all things must age and pass. An embodiment of entropy. That power, separated from the whole and being held by a person who did not have the willpower to resist its transformation of him, led to something very dangerous. But it was not evil. None of the sixteen technically are, though you may have read that Hoid has specific beef with Rayse. Whether you think of Odium as evil depends upon how much you agree with Hoid's particular view.

 

*We don't have much info in the case of combined Shards like Harmony, so in that case it may be that they either mesh well or become the exact opposite. 

 

 

Edited by Use the Falchion
Spoiler-tagged per request
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It's a bit difficult to respond directly because of the spoilers in quotes, but these WoBs are salient:

Quote

Argent (paraphrased)

Ruin and Preservation were often represented in the Mistborn trilogy in terms of black and white. Is this imagery limited to that series, or do other Shards also have an associated hue?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

This (Ruin & Preservation's colors) was because of the specific world and their perception of the world and themselves. Essentially, because of the dynamics of the interplay between Ruin and Preservation, they "chose" to view themselves as black and white respectively, so that's how they were represented. Also, because the only two Shards on Scadrial, and their natures were opposites, after the long period of time they spent on the same planet, they kind of "polarized." If similar thing happened on another world, similar coloring effect could happen.

Steelheart Chicago signing (Oct. 1, 2013)
Quote

Chaos (paraphrased)

Are Shards all paired? Does Endowment have a counterpart?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

RAFO. Also, yes and no. Not all Shards have perfect counterparts like Ruin and Preservation.

Questioner (paraphrased)

Why were Ruin and Preservation linked together?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Because they're such perfect opposites. Basically it's just an opposites attract thing.

Ancient 17S Q&A (May 1, 2010)


Essentially Ruin and Preservation are in conflict more severely than almost any other pairing of Shards. The mixing of their investiture is almost like investiture and anti-investiture in its reaction, which is not what we see otherwise with Shards even if they need to be manually harmonised using music to integrate. Sazed has been developed in ways to balance Ruin and Preservation, but a Harmony that fails is literally in Discord. There's not a lot of basis for thinking this kind of Shardic pairing would have names like Survival or Life anything, because it is more a description as to whether they are in balance or not which isn't going to be a factor for almost any other combination.

As for Vin specifically we get hints from this WoB:

Quote

Questioner

I  never understood why Vin couldn't hold the Ruin Shard.

Brandon Sanderson

I could see a world where Vin maybe could have done it. But the trajectory she was on was opposed to it. Vin could have understood and become it. But what are the things that are keeping her? Vin, I don't think accepts, number one, that decay has to happen. She's experienced it a lot. But there's that piece inside her that doesn't want that to happen, doesn't want things to change, does not want people to leave her. I think that would be--if you read through, that's the soul, sort of, center event is, "Don't leave me, don't go away, don't change." And this is diametrically opposed to Ruin. People focus on the fact that she's good at killing and she is. But that heart, that soul...Ruin is more about things changing and decaying, than even about destroying.

Questioner

And I guess that's the reason why she can hold Preservation very easily?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes.

DragonCon 2019 (Aug. 29, 2019)

This suggests that she would not be in balance, and either she would become Discord or Ruin would be pushed out with one of the following options.

Quote

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

So, at the end of Mistborn Era 1, Sazed takes up both [Preservation] and Ruin, Shards which are obviously fairly diametrically opposed. Secret History implies that Sazed is able to hold both of them at once because of (for lack of a better term) who he is, and therefore implies that other people might not be able to do the same. Is that true? What would happen if someone tried to take up multiple shards and didn't have those qualifications?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Sazed was uniquely able, yes. Usually there would be an imbalance favoring one shard, which would override or push out the other.

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

Like, physically expulse?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Right. Not necessarily, but yes.

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

So what would happen then? Would it just float around? Would it Splinter? Could it be dragged into the Cognitive, like on Sel?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Oh, you guys finally figured that one out?

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

No, no, it's- it's in the book.

*points to Arcanum Unbounded*

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Right, yeah, I gave you that one. But it depends- it depends on the circumstances. It might Splinter. In the right circumstances, it might obtain its own sentience. Or it might seek out a holder on its own.

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

Wait, you mean, sentience without a holder? Just...?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

In the right circumstances, yeah.

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

And if it sought a holder, it would be inclined to find someone that would fit better with its intent?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Yeah.

Lhyonnaes (paraphrased)

And these circumstances would also depend on which Shards are taken up? Like, if they're less opposed that Ruin and Preservation?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Yeah, exactly.

Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing (Dec. 1, 2016)

 

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Posted (edited)

8 hours ago, Proletariat said:

 

Quote

Argent (paraphrased)

Ruin and Preservation were often represented in the Mistborn trilogy in terms of black and white. Is this imagery limited to that series, or do other Shards also have an associated hue?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

This (Ruin & Preservation's colors) was because of the specific world and their perception of the world and themselves. Essentially, because of the dynamics of the interplay between Ruin and Preservation, they "chose" to view themselves as black and white respectively, so that's how they were represented. Also, because the only two Shards on Scadrial, and their natures were opposites, after the long period of time they spent on the same planet, they kind of "polarized." If similar thing happened on another world, similar coloring effect could happen.

Steelheart Chicago signing (Oct. 1, 2013)

Quote

Chaos (paraphrased)

Are Shards all paired? Does Endowment have a counterpart?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

RAFO. Also, yes and no. Not all Shards have perfect counterparts like Ruin and Preservation.

Questioner (paraphrased)

Why were Ruin and Preservation linked together?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Because they're such perfect opposites. Basically it's just an opposites attract thing.

Ancient 17S Q&A (May 1, 2010)

 

Both of these WoBs make the opposition out to be more cultural, at least to my reading. The color thing is certainly cultural. Even the "polarization" line seems to say that because they were the only influences around, they became two ends on a spectrum. I think this cultural effect extends to the fandom. They were the first shards we saw on screen, and we saw them through the eyes of a society which view them as the primordial order and chaos in their creation myth. We have since learned that this view of the cosmere is limited. But that original impression of them as irreconcilably opposite sticks in our minds. The idea that it could have happened to other shard pairing seems to confirm that this is not unique to ruin and preservation. 

As for the perfect opposites thing, I like to think that what happened was that Ati, being concerned about what his shard would eventually turn him into, split off with preservation with the understanding that Leras would minimize the damage he could do. I am very excited to see the vessels before they were all warped by their shards, it is going to be fascinating! 

 

8 hours ago, Proletariat said:

Essentially Ruin and Preservation are in conflict more severely than almost any other pairing of Shards. The mixing of their investiture is almost like investiture and anti-investiture in its reaction, which is not what we see otherwise with Shards even if they need to be manually harmonised using music to integrate.

That seems patently untrue to me. Scadrial and everything on it is made out of the combined investiture of ruin and preservation. And when vin throws herself at ati, the vessels perish but the shards are unharmed. If this was true there would be a lot more explosions going on. What example do you have of them behaving like investiture and anti investiture? 

 

8 hours ago, Proletariat said:

As for Vin specifically we get hints from this WoB:

Quote

Questioner

I  never understood why Vin couldn't hold the Ruin Shard.

Brandon Sanderson

I could see a world where Vin maybe could have done it. But the trajectory she was on was opposed to it. Vin could have understood and become it. But what are the things that are keeping her? Vin, I don't think accepts, number one, that decay has to happen. She's experienced it a lot. But there's that piece inside her that doesn't want that to happen, doesn't want things to change, does not want people to leave her. I think that would be--if you read through, that's the soul, sort of, center event is, "Don't leave me, don't go away, don't change." And this is diametrically opposed to Ruin. People focus on the fact that she's good at killing and she is. But that heart, that soul...Ruin is more about things changing and decaying, than even about destroying.

Questioner

And I guess that's the reason why she can hold Preservation very easily?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes.

DragonCon 2019 (Aug. 29, 2019)

This suggests that she would not be in balance, and either she would become Discord or Ruin would be pushed out with one of the following options

Okay good point. Thinking back to books, while Vin did cause a lot of destruction, she was never at peace with the fact that she had to do so. So yeah, after thinking about that I agree that Vin as she was at the end of HoA would not have been able to pick up ruin. At least without a bottle of ruin connection juice. 

 

(stormlight spoilers) 

Spoiler
18 hours ago, Use the Falchion said:

For Cultivation, I'm not that inclined to, in all honesty. It's not out of disrespect I say this, and I apologize if it comes off that way. It's because the character has been known about since at least Words of Radiance (EDIT: I found a WoB that refers to Cultivation as a "she" in 2011, so we've known about her since at least then), and her presence isn't big enough of a spoiler to warrant spoiler tags IMO. Any and all relevant information about her and the Shard's Intent come from Oathbringer and pre-RoW WoBs.

 

Fair enough, I kind of figured the reason we had spoiler policies on the book specific boards was to give newcomers who haven't read all the books, let alone the WoBs, a place where they can engage with the community. The timing doesn't seem relevant in this case. But I am not a mod so whatever, I will keep hiding them myself though. To me taking more care about our spoilers would be a way to make the community more friendly for new readers, so I guess I will try to be the change I want to see in the world. 

Plus it is not really that hard to spoiler tag a quote? Maybe I misunderstood that part? 

18 hours ago, Use the Falchion said:

Just as an aside, apparently Ruin and Cultivation actually be better off together, according to a 2013 WoB.

Quote

Brandon Sanderson

Technically, Ruin would be most compatible with Cultivation. Ruin's 'theme' so to speak is that all things must age and pass. An embodiment of entropy. That power, separated from the whole and being held by a person who did not have the willpower to resist its transformation of him, led to something very dangerous. But it was not evil. None of the sixteen technically are, though you may have read that Hoid has specific beef with Rayse. Whether you think of Odium as evil depends upon how much you agree with Hoid's particular view.

 

Yeah that makes sense to me. They both love change, and sometimes when trying to cultivate something, you need to tear down what is there before first. It is a cool WoB. 

 

Edited by Kolten
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Posted (edited)

 

On 8/13/2022 at 0:35 PM, Kolten said:

Both of these WoBs make the opposition out to be more cultural, at least to my reading. The color thing is certainly cultural. Even the "polarization" line seems to say that because they were the only influences around, they became two ends on a spectrum. I think this cultural effect extends to the fandom. They were the first shards we saw on screen, and we saw them through the eyes of a society which view them as the primordial order and chaos in their creation myth. We have since learned that this view of the cosmere is limited. But that original impression of them as irreconcilably opposite sticks in our minds. The idea that it could have happened to other shard pairing seems to confirm that this is not unique to ruin and preservation.

I took it as 'Ruin and Preservation weren't originally/fundamentally opposite, but by the nature of how they became Invested in Scadrial and interacted there they became polarized" - so a real thing about the Shards themselves but not an original one. If Ruin and Cultivation or Preservation and Odium created a planet together the same thing might happen.

Edited by cometaryorbit
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Yeah I see what you mean, but in the context of the WoB it was mostly asking about the color, so I stand by my reading of it. Of course in the cosmere with perception shenanigans, we can both be right. The perception of them as opposites by a whole world of people may very well have an effect on how the shards are. 

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On 8/13/2022 at 1:35 PM, Kolten said:

Okay good point. Thinking back to books, while Vin did cause a lot of destruction, she was never at peace with the fact that she had to do so. So yeah, after thinking about that I agree that Vin as she was at the end of HoA would not have been able to pick up ruin. At least without a bottle of ruin connection juice. 

I'm kind of ambivalent. I agree that Vin's struggle to accept the necessity of what she's done is an issue, but that's part of her growth.  She even says during a conversation in HoA that if nothing changes, that's the same as being dead, which goes completely against the idea of Preservation.  So she's not exactly perfect for either one, which actually makes me feel like she could have held both.

I mean, Sanderson's word is gospel as far as the Cosmere is concerned, and I like that he says he can see a world in which Vin could hold Ruin.  I just think it's already closer to that than he makes it seem.

On 8/15/2022 at 10:48 PM, cometaryorbit said:

I took it as 'Ruin and Preservation weren't originally/fundamentally opposite, but by the nature of how they became Invested in Scadrial and interacted there they became polarized" - so a real thing about the Shards themselves but not an original one. If Ruin and Cultivation or Preservation and Odium created a planet together the same thing might happen.

It always felt like Yin and Yang to me. The two were both opposites and complementary to each other.  Each half of the whole, but also separate from one another, providing balance by pulling equally on each other.  I'd be really surprised if that concept didn't play any kind of role when he was devising Scadrial's set up.

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21 minutes ago, Letryx13 said:

I'm kind of ambivalent. I agree that Vin's struggle to accept the necessity of what she's done is an issue, but that's part of her growth.  She even says during a conversation in HoA that if nothing changes, that's the same as being dead, which goes completely against the idea of Preservation.  So she's not exactly perfect for either one, which actually makes me feel like she could have held both.

I mean, Sanderson's word is gospel as far as the Cosmere is concerned, and I like that he says he can see a world in which Vin could hold Ruin.  I just think it's already closer to that than he makes it seem.

It always felt like Yin and Yang to me. The two were both opposites and complementary to each other.  Each half of the whole, but also separate from one another, providing balance by pulling equally on each other.  I'd be really surprised if that concept didn't play any kind of role when he was devising Scadrial's set up.

I think it's more that Vin is growing in the opposite direction during the series - "the trajectory she was on was opposed to it". The WoB does say "Vin could have understood and become it" - it's not outside what her personality is capable of. I think if Vin had gone with Zane in book 2 - or if she'd never met Elend and bought more fully into Kelsier's fairly indiscriminate killing of nobility and their supporters in book 1 - she would have become someone much more suitable to hold Ruin.

-

Oh they absolutely are complementary opposites. I think the idea is that this situation is somewhat Scadrial specific though: there are 14 other Shards, and they could have paired off differently. Ruin/Cultivation would have worked at least as well as Ruin/Preservation.

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1 hour ago, cometaryorbit said:

I think it's more that Vin is growing in the opposite direction during the series - "the trajectory she was on was opposed to it". The WoB does say "Vin could have understood and become it" - it's not outside what her personality is capable of. I think if Vin had gone with Zane in book 2 - or if she'd never met Elend and bought more fully into Kelsier's fairly indiscriminate killing of nobility and their supporters in book 1 - she would have become someone much more suitable to hold Ruin.

-

Oh they absolutely are complementary opposites. I think the idea is that this situation is somewhat Scadrial specific though: there are 14 other Shards, and they could have paired off differently. Ruin/Cultivation would have worked at least as well as Ruin/Preservation.

True, and I think there's something to that. But she always felt like a fighter, a warrior.  And part of a warrior's journey is learning to accept what they've done.  A few invested individuals on Roshar would agree with that, I think.  And that feels like a good balance between Preservation and Ruin.  Just my opinion.  

Ruin and Cultivation would be an interesting combination. I think that would be something like Rebirth.  Eventually, everything dies, but that death can give live to new generations and so on.  

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15 minutes ago, Letryx13 said:

True, and I think there's something to that. But she always felt like a fighter, a warrior.  And part of a warrior's journey is learning to accept what they've done.  A few invested individuals on Roshar would agree with that, I think.  And that feels like a good balance between Preservation and Ruin.  Just my opinion. 

I get that... but I kind of think that warrior side is actually part of why Vin would have had trouble. She saw Ruin simply as The Enemy. Sazed's more philosophical side was able to find "peace with these things" in a kind of Zen way.

I don't think "peace with these things [death and destruction]" in Secret History is meant in an 'accepting what you've done' sense. More 'accepting the necessity for impermanence/entropy as part of the universe'.

20 minutes ago, Letryx13 said:

Ruin and Cultivation would be an interesting combination. I think that would be something like Rebirth.  Eventually, everything dies, but that death can give live to new generations and so on.  

That, or Evolution, or simply Change (controlled growth balanced with decay and randomness/chaos).

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4 hours ago, cometaryorbit said:

I get that... but I kind of think that warrior side is actually part of why Vin would have had trouble. She saw Ruin simply as The Enemy. Sazed's more philosophical side was able to find "peace with these things" in a kind of Zen way.

I don't think "peace with these things [death and destruction]" in Secret History is meant in an 'accepting what you've done' sense. More 'accepting the necessity for impermanence/entropy as part of the universe'.

I agree, that's almost certainly what it meant; being able to accept death and be at peace with it.  But there's also the fact that Vin was able to let go of Elend not once, but twice.  At the well of ascension, and after Marsh/Ruin killed him.  She wasn't willing to let the deaths of so many be for nothing, but she did seem to accept them.  Kelsier was surprised when she didn't fly into a rage. She definitely saw Ruin as the enemy, but I doubt Sazed saw it much differently until he took up the power.  

 

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On 8/18/2022 at 6:09 PM, cometaryorbit said:

I get that... but I kind of think that warrior side is actually part of why Vin would have had trouble. She saw Ruin simply as The Enemy. Sazed's more philosophical side was able to find "peace with these things" in a kind of Zen way.

I don't think "peace with these things [death and destruction]" in Secret History is meant in an 'accepting what you've done' sense. More 'accepting the necessity for impermanence/entropy as part of the universe'.

That, or Evolution, or simply Change (controlled growth balanced with decay and randomness/chaos).

Evolution so sounds like a shard name.

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On 8/20/2022 at 5:16 PM, Ta'veren Kaladin said:

Evolution so sounds like a shard name.

In a way, it's what Harmony is going for. He's trying to get his people to advance.  And Vin spoke of growth in a similar manner just before defeating Ruin, but I agree. Great name for a Shard.  

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