king of nowhere

nalthians, drabs, and other humans

42 posts in this topic

A bit of musing:

I think, the Breath is a part of any human's soul. But only on Naltis the special premises (the Shard of Endowment) give the people the possibility to share this part with others. It strikes me that the "normal" Nalthian (one who has one Breath) doesn't have a better "life sense" than humans on other shards. It's the "give-up" of this Breath that makes one a drab. So while humans on the other Shards don't have the possibility (or at least they don't know about it) to give their Breath away, they will not become drabs.

Please correct me if I'm totally wrong.

This quote is what I believe also. Whether it is true or not is what is being discussed in this thread.

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My opinion is that Nalthian's are given an extra something by Endowment, but aren't any superior to normal humans, aside from the fact that they can awaken.


 

Like on Roshar, how it is a High oxygen, low gravity world, but the humans there cannot jump incredible distances or run extremely long amounts of time (unaided by magic). Their bodies have adjusted to the denser atmosphere by having less developed lungs, and countered their low gravity by not developing their muscles enough, because these body systems are like muscles, they only grow when you use them. If a human from earth could theoretically go to Roshar, they would be able to jump and run better than almost any Rosharan because we would have better developed muscles because of stronger gravity.


 

 

Much in this way the Nalthians just haven't developed their immune systems or life sense because they are dependent upon their breaths to provide these things for them, so Drabs would be slightly inferior to your average human just because their body was dependent upon the breath they were born with. Drabs may or may not develop a stronger immune system if they don't have a breath for long enough, but I'm not sure. Now if an earth human could theoretically travel to Nalthis, they wouldn't be more irritable or less immune to disease than the Nalthians, but wouldn't have any Breath.

 

Fyi this is my first post.

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This is my take on what has been said:

I think that every human (and very likely every sapient creature) in the Cosmere has something "extra" (possibly divine) which makes them a self-aware agent. I suspect that this something extra is spiritual. It is also this "something extra" which gives them access to their respective magics, at least potentially. (See also, sDNA.) Thus people throughout the Cosmere access their magics from their respective Shards by doing something in accordance with their Shard's purpose.

This then makes the case of Breath seem logical, as follows. People on Nalthis have the sDNA to endow others and things with some of their "something extra." It just follows naturally from the Shard that created or influenced them. This would then make a drab slightly less than baseline human. This then thematically fits in with the notion of the sacrifice that endowment implies, as others here have noted. It definitely makes Breaths a more balanced system in Cosmere terms, as well.

Every single person on the world of Scadrial has a bit of Leras in them—a bit of the power of Preservation. Every single person has a bit of Ati in y them. http://www.theorylan...n.php?i=680/#26

I really like Happyman's idea about the spiritual spec of "something extra". It seems reasonable to assume that each person on a shard world has a bit of the shard within them. I call this investiture, and think breath is the Investiture on Nalthis. Most types of Investitiure seem sort of stuck inside someone, but it fits for Endowment's essence to be Endowable.

ZAS

After several more signings, I asked my other question. "Do people in the Comsere, besides Nalthis, have Breaths?"

BRANDON SANDERSON

"No." He then signed a person's books, then said "To elaborate a little more, that's not to say they don't have a life force, because they do. But if someone not from Nalthis were to suddenly gain the ability to become an Awakener, they could not use what they have to Awaken something. That's not to say that they can't receive breaths though."

This seems to be talking about Identity. Even if you give them lots of breaths, a person from a different planet can't use them to Awaken. It seems something hard coded in your spirit needs to be attuned to the shard for you to use it's Investiture.
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I call this investiture, and think breath is the Investiture on Nalthis. Most types of Investitiure seem sort of stuck inside someone, but it fits for Endowment's essence to be Endowable.

This seems to be talking about Identity. Even if you give them lots of breaths, a person from a different planet can't use them to Awaken. It seems something hard coded in your spirit needs to be attuned to the shard for you to use it's Investiture.

 

Was doing a Theoryland trawl the other day, and found something (which annoyingly I can't find right now) where Brandon stated that the nature if Investiture differs from world to world. Scadrial Investiture is genetic, on Sel it comes through the Shaod (so not everyone on Sel would be Invested, although how this matches up then with other systems I'm unsure - presumably one has to force the issue as with Dakhor or ChayShan). Roshar it comes in the form of Stormlight, which people can hold for a time, or inside Invested objects such as Shardblades but again the actual Investiture doesn't seem innate as it is on Scadrial or Nalthis.

 

I don't know what implications this info has on Realmatic Theory.

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Investiture on Roshar is through Spren bonds

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@Isomere

 

No. If Breaths were the same thing as the "spark" of Preservation that makes Scadrians sentient, then Drabs would be stupid, not just "drab."

 

@Leuthie

 

Also no. Szeth doesn't have a spren. Magic on Roshar is a consequence of actions whose consequences are not limited to bonds with spren.

 

Incidentally, I think that's the quote you saw on Theoryland, Senor.

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You're right that we don't know all sources of Investiture.

Actions and thoughts seen to create and/or attract various Spren which seem to be the main source of Investiture. They are encased in gems which power fabrials, they have bonded with at least one person to transfer Investiture and seem to be doing the same with Parshendi. They have also responded to commands (Shallan's magic). Szeth is a special case so far and may open up the question of sources of Investiture further, but, currently, the only source we're sure of comes from Spren.

In any case, Stormlight isn't a source of Investiture. It's fuel, like color on nalthis or metal on Scadrial.

Edited by Leuthie
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What exactly is your point, Leuthie? That we only know about spren, so they're the only gateway to power worth mentioning? The "only sources we're sure of" are spren and whatever Szeth has. That kind of immediately invalidates your statement that "[all] Investiture on Roshar is through spren bonds" (the "all" was implicit). If you didn't mean to imply that only spren gave you access to Investiture, then I would suggest that you be somewhat more clear in the future.

 

And now your new statment is also highly doubtful. You've managed to identify two distinct "sources" of Investiture that are not at all akin to stormlight, or even to each other. It's abundantly clear that stormlight is a power source in and of itself, while metals only code for power from other sources and Breaths are clearly doing the heavy lifting with Awakening. Color plays a role, but it's most certainly not a "fuel." Either way, both of those instances are distinct from being "fuel" in the sense of fueling magical happenings through energy wholly contained within themselves.

 

Or do you mean something else by "source of Investiture"? Isomere kind of muddied the water by calling the "spark" of sentience Investiture, but most people (myself included) use it as a catch-all term for "magical power." Specifically, active (or at least potentially active) magical power. Brandon talks about "innate Investiture" sometimes when talking about Allomantic potential and stuff, and I'd probably label something like a spren-bond as "psuedo-innate" if I had the choice, since it's still relatively passive.

 

I think it likely that stormlight is pretty much raw power--raw Investiture--with certain restrictions on how it can be accessed. Spren and fabrials and whatever Szeth is doing seem to enable that access, but that doesn't change the fact that the power itself is within the stormlight. Essentially, I think it's contradictory to say that stormlight is fuel and thus is not a source of Investiture. If you were to say it was a catalyst, like the metals, then I would understand, but not a fuel.

Edited by Kurkistan
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No point. Just posting things while bored. Don't have time to post essays complete with quotes and citations, so I'll just stick to jokes and congratulations like a good little lurker

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Also no. Szeth doesn't have a spren. Magic on Roshar is a consequence of actions whose consequences are not limited to bonds with spren.

Szeth isn't a counterexample until we know how he got the magic. If he has Odium instead of a spren, or if the Shardblade has a spren simulator inside it, that fits not having a spren, without changing how magic works on the planet. On Scadrial we don't stop saying magic is genetic just because Hemalurgy creates exceptions.

I don't see any significance in the vagueness of Brandon's "in tWoK it depends on what some one has done" except that he was being vague to avoid spoilers. I like your theory that it's actions that matter not decisions, but it's still possible that "actions" is just a spoiler-free way of saying "bonding spren".

Edited by Morsk
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That's a fair point, Morsk. I suppose I got caught up in my "no"s. ;) At the very least, though, even if we say magic on Roshar is fundamentally filtered through spren-like effects, it's not purely through "Spren bonds", unless Szeth has a captured spren in his shardblade and you want to make the "bond" relation transitive from spren->blade->Szeth.

 

As far as "what someone has done", I think either interpretation still leaves you with a more nuanced and open explanation of how you get magic on Roshar than just saying "spren".

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Thanks Kurk. I didn't find the quote in your links (I actually saw it first in the interview database) but that is the reference - that it's your actions on Roshar that give you access (although obviously Blades are themselves Invested items, which may or may not be separate to humans directly accessing Investiture in the form or Surges).

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All that aside, this is a War breaker forum discussion and I didn't want to change it to a discussion about WoK, so I was trying to keep it simple. Stormlight is not what gives someone access to magic on Roshar in the same way as genetics on Scadrial and the Shaod on Sel.

Such a simple correction turns into a new discussion about a different book because my vocabulary was wrong (yet fit the word usage in this particular discussion). My bad.

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EDIT: Lots of spoilers in my post, please skip if you dont want to discuss Sel, Scadrial and Roshar.  

If Breaths were the same thing as the "spark" of Preservation that makes Scadrians sentient, then Drabs would be stupid, not just "drab."

 

to be honest, I think it is kind of both. A Drab is less Invested than someone from Roshar or Scadrial, but a Nalthian with his Breath intact is more Invested.

I always thought similar to this. Nalthians only give part of their investiture away when they donate Breath. 

 

Essentially, I think it's contradictory to say that stormlight is fuel and thus is not a source of Investiture. If you were to say it was a catalyst, like the metals, then I would understand, but not a fuel.

I actually do try to separate Investiture from Fuel, though I don't yet have fixed ideas on the topic. I see Investiture as a piece broken off the original shard and given to a human. It can't be destroyed or created. On the other hand, the shards have solid, liquid and gas forms of energy that I dont think are investiture. Energy can be used up and leaves, while investiture stays with the human holding it. Stormlight, the Mists, the Dor are all sources of energy. You gain access to using this energy only after you are given Investiture and have your Identity attuned. Breath, Spren, Splinters, and Shards represent Investiture to me. 

 

 

http://www.theoryland.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=5584

 In l lot of his systems people are through some mechanism invested with magic powers. In Elantris trough the Shaod, In mistborn it's genetic, in tWoK it depends on what some one has done.

 

 

I really think this quote is trying to discuss Identity, and Jarno was doing the best he could to recreate the discussion after the fact. Let's take Kaladin for example. I think the Investiture is in the Spren, but he needs to attune his Identity to attract the spren. Acting honorably attunes him to Honor, saying the Words attunes him to honor etc. The closer his Identity is linked to Honor the more easy it is for him to use the Investiture in Syl to access Stormlight, and the better he can control Stormlight once he has it. In my theory, Szeth would need to find some way to gain access to a Spren. If he is not forming a bond, then he would have to trap the Investiture in a fabrial or Shardblade. 

Edited by Isomere
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All that aside, this is a War breaker forum discussion and I didn't want to change it to a discussion about WoK, so I was trying to keep it simple. Stormlight is not what gives someone access to magic on Roshar in the same way as genetics on Scadrial and the Shaod on Sel.

Such a simple correction turns into a new discussion about a different book because my vocabulary was wrong (yet fit the word usage in this particular discussion). My bad.

 

Sorry if I jumped down your throat there, I'm a stickler for vocab. :P

 

As far as this being a Warbreaker topic, it's an exceptionally old and dead Warbreaker topic that went off course even before it was unnaturally revived, so don't see a problem with a little derailment.

 

EDIT: Lots of spoilers in my post, please skip if you dont want to discuss Sel, Scadrial and Roshar.  

 

I always thought similar to this. Nalthians only give part of their investiture away when they donate Breath. 

 

I actually do try to separate Investiture from Fuel, though I don't yet have fixed ideas on the topic. I see Investiture as a piece broken off the original shard and given to a human. It can't be destroyed or created. On the other hand, the shards have solid, liquid and gas forms of energy that I dont think are investiture. Energy can be used up and leaves, while investiture stays with the human holding it. Stormlight, the Mists, the Dor are all sources of energy. You gain access to using this energy only after you are given Investiture and have your Identity attuned. Breath, Spren, Splinters, and Shards represent Investiture to me. 

 

You're actually basically right here, so far as I know, but using really really misleading terminology that makes you sound wrong.

 

The energy of the Shards isn't destroyed or created either, so far as I know. The Well refills every 1024 years,  Preservation's power returns to him after fueling Allomancy, stuff like that. I can't think of a quote to back this up, but it's my impression that the general belief around here is that the "Power of Creation" Shards hold and distribute can only be dispersed, not destroyed. So there's no need to make that particular distinction between inherent and transitory Investiture.

 

So far as there being a difference between raw Investiture and "spark"-style Investiture, I agree. Brandon calls it "innate Investiture," as I mentioned in an earlier post.

 

I really think this quote is trying to discuss Identity, and Jarno was doing the best he could to recreate the discussion after the fact. Let's take Kaladin for example. I think the Investiture is in the Spren, but he needs to attune his Identity to attract the spren. Acting honorably attunes him to Honor, saying the Words attunes him to honor etc. The closer his Identity is linked to Honor the more easy it is for him to use the Investiture in Syl to access Stormlight, and the better he can control Stormlight once he has it. In my theory, Szeth would need to find some way to gain access to a Spren. If he is not forming a bond, then he would have to trap the Investiture in a fabrial or Shardblade. 

 

The ideas here are interesting, what with attunement and all. All that aside, though, you might want to be careful with your terminology in the future. Investiture has some very specific meanings (though we're still figuring out exactly what they are...), so deciding to start calling the method by which you access Investiture "Investiture" is not very conducive to clear discussion.

Edited by Kurkistan
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I would apologize for the slight necrosis but this is a slow enough forum that I don't even feel bad.

No. If Breaths were the same thing as the "spark" of Preservation that makes Scadrians sentient, then Drabs would be stupid, not just "drab."

I do not necessarily agree with this. It's possible that the tiny investiture in all humans throughout the Cosmere is something of a spark plug for sentience. Required to begin sentience, not maintain it.

If you are right, feruchemists probably think Nicrosil allows you to Store Stupidity.

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I would apologize for the slight necrosis but this is a slow enough forum that I don't even feel bad.

 

Oh no, you should feel bad (and I haven't been able to post this picture in a while :P)

 

21263d1305120619-necro-thread-necro.jpg

 

I do not necessarily agree with this. It's possible that the tiny investiture in all humans throughout the Cosmere is something of a spark plug for sentience. Required to begin sentience, not maintain it.

If you are right, feruchemists probably think Nicrosil allows you to Store Stupidity.

 

I disagree with your "sparkplug" interpretation of "spark". If that were the case, it seems that you could use Hemalurgy to grant intelligence to a cat (one of the last things you'd ever do  :D), and then withdraw the spike and still have a sentient cat. Hemalurgy's boons go away when you remove the spikes--when you take away what they've grafted into the spiritweb--so the removal of Innate Investiture from your spirit should have similar effects, as opposed to there being some ontological inertia of sentience.

 

As for the "how" of the thing, if you buy the general form of Windy's argumentation, you could posit that Innate Investiture gives humans a "form receptive to sentience" or some such for an explanation of why the constant presence of Innate Investiture is necessary.

Edited by Kurkistan
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