Shardlet

Seattle Firefight Signing 1/6/2015

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In my point of view, if a person could ensure that animals and children will like him, no matter how bad he really is, and no matter what the animal or child's current temperament might be, just by being a Returned, I don't see how he can't consider that as an ability to transform personality/behavior of some targets. Even if it is just a side effect of his Breath.

 

I don't think it works quite like that. Hosting a Divine Breath doesn't mean creatures of limited mental capacity or experience - animals and children - automatically like you, no matter what. The way I see it, it's more of a predisposition, first impression kind of thing, a little like a mild form of emotional Allomancy. I am reminded of the child whose Breathe Lightsong had to feed on - the kid was terrified, if I recall correctly.

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Argent, on 12 Jan 2015 - 2:45 PM, said:

I don't think it works quite like that. Hosting a Divine Breath doesn't mean creatures of limited mental capacity or experience - animals and children - automatically like you, no matter what. The way I see it, it's more of a predisposition, first impression kind of thing, a little like a mild form of emotional Allomancy. I am reminded of the child whose Breathe Lightsong had to feed on - the kid was terrified, if I recall correctly.

Even a weak form of personality manipulation is still personality manipulation, I would think. We know that the child Vasher rescued had been severely traumatized, and yet Vasher's Divine Breath still affected her.

 

But anyway, the person Brandon says has done what Shallan has done might very well be any one of the characters we've seen that can tamper with people's minds, as I mentioned in my edit of the previous post.

Edited by skaa
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Even a weak form of personality manipulation is still personality manipulation, I would think. We know that the child Vasher rescued had been severely traumatized, and yet Vasher's Divine Breath still affected her.

 

Only in the same way that wearing nice clothes, or smiling at someone, or speaking kindly to someone is "personality manipulation" is what I'd argue. Calling it manipulation is a little bit misleading - there's a lot of baggage that comes attached with the word. I'm not sure any Returned are even aware of the effect they have on children on-screen?

 

(SPECULATION ALERT!!!!!) Also: almost every Returned is going to be admirable, in some way or another. Endowment hand picks them, and to Return it seems you need to act particularly endow-ful before you die, much like you seem to have to be devote-ful to become an Elantrian. It's definitely a useful and strong predictor that if someone has a Divine Breath, they're probably a nice person in some way or another. (/SPECULATION ALERT!!!!!!!!!)

 

@Wetlander:

Thank you for the transcription. I was interested by the mention that Lightweaving is purely Illumination - I wonder if Renarin needs to draw things, like Shallan does, to use it?

Edited by Moogle
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(SPECULATION ALERT!!!!!) Also: almost every Returned is going to be admirable, in some way or another. Endowment hand picks them, and to Return it seems you need to act particularly endow-ful before you die, much like you seem to have to be devote-ful to become an Elantrian. It's definitely a useful and strong predictor that if someone has a Divine Breath, they're probably a nice person in some way or another. (/SPECULATION ALERT!!!!!!!!!)

 

It may be simpler than that. The Returned have their bodies reshaped to fit the "average" idea of a perfect male or female (of a given age) at the time, so most people will naturally like them - they are perfect, after all. 

 

 

Thank you for the transcription. I was interested by the mention that Lightweaving is purely Illumination - I wonder if Renarin needs to draw things, like Shallan does, to use it?

 

Not necessarily - in fact I'll headcanon that it's unlikely. We know the Lightweavers (the Order) are often, if not always, the creative types, so Shallan's drawing makes sense in that context. The Truthwatchers, however, aren't related to art (according to the in-world excerpts of Words of Radiance) in any way; I feel that their powers are more internal, in a way, so when they create Lightwoven illusions, I suspect their "crutches" are also internal (i.e. they imagine the illusion more than they manifest it artistically). But obviously I am speculating wildly here.

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It may be simpler than that. The Returned have their bodies reshaped to fit the "average" idea of a perfect male or female (of a given age) at the time, so most people will naturally like them - they are perfect, after all.

 

This wouldn't fit Vasher - he's purposefully suppressed that, and himself look scruffy and the like. You're probably right that there's a strong effect from that for most Returned though. I forgot about the halo effect.

 

Not necessarily - in fact I'll headcanon that it's unlikely. We know the Lightweavers (the Order) are often, if not always, the creative types, so Shallan's drawing makes sense in that context. The Truthwatchers, however, aren't related to art (according to the in-world excerpts of Words of Radiance) in any way; I feel that their powers are more internal, in a way, so when they create Lightwoven illusions, I suspect their "crutches" are also internal (i.e. they imagine the illusion more than they manifest it artistically). But obviously I am speculating wildly here.

 

This might be true, but since it's just a use of Illumination, I wouldn't expect it to differ wildly between orders. The Ars Arcanum mentions the Lightweaver needs a Spiritual connection to whatever they're trying to create.

 

Then again, it may be a limitation of Shallan's. Pattern didn't seem to think she needed to draw to do her illusions...

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Only in the same way that wearing nice clothes, or smiling at someone, or speaking kindly to someone is "personality manipulation" is what I'd argue. Calling it manipulation is a little bit misleading - there's a lot of baggage that comes attached with the word. I'm not sure any Returned are even aware of the effect they have on children on-screen?

 

Alright, so it being "manipulation" is debatable.

 

The original question is who it was that Brandon was thinking of when he said "You have seen what she was doing before, done by another character." I proposed that it might be Vasher because of how he can also affect the behavior of certain targets. Kurk disagreed because he didn't think it was Vasher "doing" the thing that was happening. And you disagree because you say it's not manipulation. You both missed the point, because Shallan herself wasn't consciously performing the supernatural effect on others that was being brought about by her specific Invested state, and that particular effect can be argued to not be a form of manipulation on her part (since she wasn't aware of it). Either way, neither of you have really explained to me why Vasher and Shallan are not similar in this manner.

 

 

It may be simpler than that. The Returned have their bodies reshaped to fit the "average" idea of a perfect male or female (of a given age) at the time, so most people will naturally like them - they are perfect, after all.

 

No. The annotations specifically said that it is the Returned's Divine Breath that has a mystical effect on children and animals, not their perfect bodies. It's a magical effect, not the result of aesthetics.

Edited by skaa
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Either way, neither of you have really explained to me why Vasher and Shallan are not similar in this manner.

 

I apologize. I was not trying to address that argument, as I don't have any firm opinions one way or another. I was just addressing that one small part of your post, which was rude of me.

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(SPECULATION ALERT!!!!!)

 

Thank you.

 

Something to add... not really to disagree, just one more element to keep in mind. I concur that everyone must do something to impress Endowment, and apparently must in your final moments exemplify something heroic or noble. And I agree that on average this prolly does make you a reasonably nice person.

 

I'm just remembering a LARP I was in once. (Yes I'm admitting that in public). A group of good guys got to the final battle, and were able to put up a massive shield around the central prize to keep all evil out, then tried to do their thing. My group showed up to stop them, and we were told, "You can't be in here, anyone evil can't enter this room." And we told them, "We're not evil, we're good. We just don't agree with how you want to use prize."

 

My point is, just as two rational, reasonable people can look at the same evidence and draw two different conclusions, two different people can both be "heroic" and "endowful" and not necessarily both be good people. For example, Blushweaver apparently died in an extraordinarily "Honest" way. Brutal honesty is seldom nice. As Emily Dickinson said, "As lightning to the children eased with explanation kind, the truth must dazzle gradually, else every man be blind." Children especially are typically introduced to the brutal truths of the world on a gradual basis. A person exemplifying total honesty might find that children are not naturally attracted.

 

Again, not trying to flat-out disagree with your statement. I think you're right, that the vast majority of people who Return, being hand-selected by Endowment specifically to make the world be a better place, are prolly decent blokes to whom children might necessarily flock. I'm just pointing out that outliers prolly do exist; not to say that I think your statement didn't allow for this, I just wanted to express what you had implied.

 

Hrm... I think I'll go start a thread in Warbreaker, unless I find that it already exists. Returned "Destinies". Do they usually work?

 

EDIT: To respond to Skaa... I disagree, only because I think Tien did to Kaladin EXACTLY (not in fundamental principle) what Shallan did to the Deserters. Hrm... huge speculation, but in my personal headcanon I agree with you that what Vasher did was, to an extent, similar to what Lightweavers do. However, it's by such a broad generalization that I think it's exactly like what Breeze does. I think in the specific tease that Mr. Sanderson gave us, he was talking about something more specific. So... I disagree with you, not because I think your answer doesn't fit the situation, just because I think there's another example that fits the situation so much better, it's prolly what Mr. Sanderson was talking about. I'll try to find my link to the thread where I present all my evidence for why Tien is obviously a Lightweaver.

Edited by Oudeis
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@skaa

 

I was mostly concerned because I thought that you were saying it was a more active, intentional, controlled "doing" than it seems that Vasher's effect accomplishes. My read of Brandon here is that the other instance we've seen was a bit more impactful (if not more intentional) than Vasher's general "hey I'm a nice guy, really" aura, though it seems we differ on that interpretation.

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@Moogle and @Kurk: My use of English is not always as precise as I want it to be, leading to sentences that are sometimes unclear and sometimes downright idiotic. Sorry for the confusion.

 

@Oudeis: I've heard about the "Tien is a Lightweaver" theory before, and while I've sadly forgotten the evidence in favor of it (I need to re-read WoK!), I guess I can concede that Tien would be the more mindblowing answer.

Edited by skaa
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damnation, it's been a while since I read the annotations, I keep getting surprised by information from there...

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I'll try to find my link to the thread where I present all my evidence for why Tien is obviously a Lightweaver.

 

Found it!

 

Though in the course of looking for it, on like the first page I found someone else pointed it out before me. I've upvoted him for beating me to the punch, though I think I explain the case in more detail, myself.

Edited by Oudeis
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 I was interested by the mention that Lightweaving is purely Illumination - I wonder if Renarin needs to draw things, like Shallan does, to use it?

It occurs to me that Truthwatchers may use the Surge of Illumination in ways far different than Lightweaving per se. I'm wondering if Illumination is some of what allows them to "see things" in ways that others don't, perhaps, rather than creating illusions for others to see. This is partially based on the observation that Transformation seems to work differently for Jasnah than for Shallan, so perhaps other Surges are handled differently by the Orders that can access them. 

 

This just popped into my head, so it's not at all well thought out. I'd love to hear what y'all think.

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This is partially based on the observation that Transformation seems to work differently for Jasnah than for Shallan...

 

How does Transformation work differently for each of them? The way Shallan changed the goblet and the ship seemed pretty similar to how Jasnah changed the wine into crystal, or the paper into fire.

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The Surges are supposed to work almost identically between the Ordens. Theoryland is incredibly slow for me right now, but there is a WoB that when we see the Skybreakers use Gravitation, it's going to be very similar to what the Windrunners can do with it. 

 

That's why I was careful to phrase my own reply to emphasize a difference in the process, but not the results.

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How does Transformation work differently for each of them? The way Shallan changed the goblet and the ship seemed pretty similar to how Jasnah changed the wine into crystal, or the paper into fire.

Again, I haven't spent a lot of time researching things just yet (still working on that storming transcription!) but Jasnah never seems to have to convince anything to change, while Shallan has to give everything a good reason - sometimes successfully, sometimes not. Shallan couldn't get the stick to become fire, because she couldn't convince it; Jasnah didn't seem to need the consent of the thugs to make them become crystal, fire, and smoke.This could simply be a matter of their personalities, of course, and we haven't been in Jasnah's head for very many of her Soulcastings. Or it could be something specific to the Orders. We do know that Elsecallers have a greater facility with Shadesmar than any other Order (probably their Quirk), so it seems reasonable that they can access Soulcasting in a manner that Lightweavers cannot. Is it "different" or just "easier"? (I don't necessarily mean with different results - just a different way of manipulating the Surge to get the same result.) I don't know; there's still a lot we've not been told.

 

As I said, this is purely theoretical; still, it seems logical that the two Orders who have access might also make somewhat different use of a given Surge as a matter of course. The Orders have different purposes and different Ideals; why not make different use of the shared Surge? I'm not saying that they must use it differently (which would be stupid because it's the same Surge, and WoB says it's much the same) but it seems like they might use it for different reasons and with a different emphasis. So Shallan (so far) has used Illumination to create illusions, and Renarin can probably do the same (if/when he figures out how) - but perhaps so far he has used Illumination to see things other people don't. 

 

As noted in my report, Brandon did say that Lightweaving (the creating of illusions as Shallan uses it) is solely of Illumination and not of Transformation - but he didn't say that Lightweaving was the sole use for Illumination. That might be a good question for someone to ask at a signing.

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@Argent and Wetlander: You're not really addressing my point. We've never seen a Soulcasting from Jasnah, that I know of, in that she doesn't have a Viewpoint chapter in either Way of Kings or Words of Radiance. Shallan's only ever successfully Soulcast twice, and tried (well, really tried) and failed once. Maybe Jasnah is better at convincing; maybe convincing is one way, but not the only way for either of them.

 

Basically what I'm saying is, if you take one guy who can just barely lash, and falls every time he does it, and has to stop and think about it each time, and can only Lash himself... and compare him to a guy who can Lash multiple times to increase his speed, who can sail the air and own the skies, who can catch a man Lashed by someone else and carefully bring him to the ground... you'd be comparing Kaladin to himself. My point is, a novice might look like they're doing something very, very differently than a master does, even when the master is doing the exact same thing, just better.

 

tl;dr, we don't see Soulcasting from Jasnah's perspective. The mechanical results are exactly the same. Many aspects are all exactly the same. The parts that you're saying are different are just speculation, since it could easily be that they're very similar, and the difference is simply a matter of raw talent and expertise. It's possible they're different, but we don't know and frankly given WoB on shared Surges acting very similar, we have no good reason to speculate that they're going to be any different.

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 The parts that you're saying are different are just speculation

That's what I said, isn't it? It's all theorizing and speculation; if we could prove it one way or the other, we wouldn't be speculating any more. 

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This is partially based on the observation that Transformation seems to work differently for Jasnah than for Shallan...

 

You're speculating about something else, and basing that speculation on this statement, saying that there's "observation that they seem different." Except... there is no observed differences, and they don't seem different. If you want, you can guess that they're different in a way we don't yet have clues about, but if you phrase it like this you'll confuse people into thinking that there's actual evidence of that being true, when in fact we have evidence that they're not different in any significant way.

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Would it have helped if I said "my observation"? Because that's the basis of everything in this discussion - my reading of the texts, my reading of other people's reports, my reading of Brandon's vocal inflections and body language, etc. Or your reading of yada yada yada. Observation is by nature a very subjective thing, and people often interpret the same words in different ways. In my opinion, it can be observed that there are differences between the Soulcasting processes of Jasnah and Shallan. Perhaps there are also differences between the way Shallan and Renarin will use Illumination. Perhaps there isn't anything different at all, and as Shallan progresses she'll learn how to Soulcast things that don't want to change. Perhaps Renarin will suddenly take up drawing. Perhaps Shallan will progress beyond the need for drawings. Perhaps Renarin will never bother with drawing, and will create Illusions just by thinking about them. Perhaps his future sight has nothing to do with Illumination. Perhaps it is another aspect of Illumination. Perhaps it is the Truthwatcher Quirk. Perhaps it has more to do with Progression. Or nothing at all. 

 

As I said, of course I can't prove it, or it wouldn't be a subject of speculation. It's a suggestion, an idea, a "maybe it will be" notion. We won't know for sure until we see Renarin actually do something with it - and even then we will only have our own interpretations of what happens, unless Brandon (rather uncharacteristically) spells it out in great detail for us. 

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Well... I'm still waiting for you to tell me what exactly you've "observed" that tells you they're different. Cuz I've pointed out already how we're shown in every instance that they're the same.

 

I disagree with you that saying "observed" means something is subjective, rather than objective. Interpreted is subjective, but pure observation is an objective thing. An exothermic reaction can be observed to produce 7 joules of heat. If you "observe" it you're not going to get 15 joules, you're not gonna get 2 joules. Now, you could take the same set of data points I have and come to a different conclusion, and that would be subjective, but by that point we're done observing and we're now interpreting.

 

You and I both "observed" Jasnah turn men into smoke. Your interpretation of that event is that it couldn't possibly be due to Jasnah convincing their cognitive aspects to change. You also interpret that the way we've seen Shallan attempt to Soulcast is the only form of Soulcasting available to her.

 

I'm just saying. You're using inherently objective terminology to express your own speculation as fact. It's becoming more and more prevalent on this forum to do so, and there are a lot of new people trying to figure stuff out. If you say things like, "we've seen that Jasnah and Shallan Soulcast in different ways" people will tend to believe you, and then they'll have false information.

 

Unless, and I'm gonna reiterate this once more, if you can show me what I'm missing, if you can present me with any evidence of their powers operating differently that's strong enough to counter the WoB saying that they work the same, I will concede that you were right, and that you did in fact observe something.

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You're using inherently objective terminology to express your own speculation as fact. 

SAY WHAT??????

 

I've never once, in all this conversation, pretended that I was presenting any of my speculation as fact. I've said over and over and over that it's all theory and speculation. But if you want someone to spend hours and hours convincing you of something you don't believe, ask someone else. I've got work to do.

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Shhh, the dialog is approaching dangerous territories. Let's talk about something else, something safer.

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Thanks for the transcript! :)

 

 

Well that's not going to drive me mad trying to figure out or anything...  :unsure:

Really?  I thought we saw this happen with Kaladin throughout the entirety of his time in Bridge Four.  I don't see a functional difference between the deserters and Bridge Four's transformations, anyway.  In both cases, the nascent Radiant in question took a group of people and they became something... better.

 

The question that's baking my noodle is if the deserters will manifest as Shallan's squires.

 

As for Illumination, I'm willing to double-down on Truthwatchers learning if not using it via a different method than Lightweavers.  Shallan uses Memory taking and drawing as a focus (and hypothetically can progress beyond that), whereas Renarin could very well initially require a different aspect, such as in depth, hands-on analysis, "seeing" every angle of it.  Adolin has implicitly described him as insightful and curious by nature (e.g. - knowing the differences between wines).  It could be that both Lightweavers and Truthwatchers have to form a Spiritual connection to it, but something tells me Lightweavers, by definition, have a bit of an advantage with Illumination.

 

At the very least, I could easily see Truthwatchers utilizing Illumination to 'play back' their apparent talent for precognition.

Edited by dvoraen
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This might be true, but since it's just a use of Illumination, I wouldn't expect it to differ wildly between orders. The Ars Arcanum mentions the Lightweaver needs a Spiritual connection to whatever they're trying to create.

 

Then again, it may be a limitation of Shallan's. Pattern didn't seem to think she needed to draw to do her illusions...

Yeah, he was surprised she needed to draw.

If this was in the Wheel of Time, we'd think of all the current Radiants as "wilders" in that they're self-trained and can have blocks or limitations as a result (and also abilities that horrify or shame "normal" channellers). Shallan is self-trained in general (to a large degree) and some parts of her skills might be a bit unbalanced as a result - she may be so used to visualising and drawing things out that it's hard for her to do something similar without drawing it out.

I suspect that Shallan did not have this limitation as a child and that she will be able to perform useful Lightweaving in future without needing to use drawings first - it's not like she can't activate her Lightweaving without drawings but that they're very weak if she tries. In the long term maybe her current limitation will turn out to be a strength and she'll be able to easily do certain things that historical Lightweavers would have struggled with.

Regarding Shallan's "transformation" of the deserters I've sometimes wondered if it's a useful to compare it to Rioting/Soothing. Might be sort-of right but technically quite different. It would be interesting to know what about them she actually affected - it's not like they were all affected (Vathah and his underlings weren't) so it was subtle. I sometimes wonder if the Lightweavers' overall "purpose" is to bring hope - if so this would be a good example.

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