Moogle

Theory: All Investiture Slows Aging

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Nothing special on this one.

  • Breath slows aging and eventually provides immortality.
  • I've previously speculated that constantly holding Stormlight would be enough to stop your aging, based on how the Knights Radiant and Heralds seemed to not age.
  • People with lots of Hemalurgic spikes (Inquisitors) age slower than normal. Spikes can steal innate Investiture.
  • Elantrians, who seem to have an effect similar to holding Stormlight/having raw Investiture pour out of them are near-immortal.
  • I wouldn't be surprised to learn that metal savants also age slower than normal, though Allomancy doesn't really hold raw Investiture (if there's such a thing).

 

Any examples or counterexamples I'm missing? I'm not sure if Feruchemy involves Investiture, because there's literally a metal that involves storing Investiture and if they all did it would seem redundant.

 

Anyone have any hints as to the mechanics involved? I'd guess that holding raw Investiture slowly alters your personality to be more static and in line with the Shard the Investiture came from, and this 'stasis' results in immortality. Particularly considering that aging is Cognitive. It doesn't seem entirely workable, but if anyone has any other ideas, I'm eager to hear them.

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Where did you get that KR don't age?

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Where did you get that KR don't age?

 

Tons of speculation dressed up as evidence and stated really confidently! That makes theories more likely to be true, right?

  • There's only a hundred known Shardblades, in the entire world. If Radiants aged like normal people, over the course of thousands of years (the Radiants have been through several Desolations, if you're willing to take the female Radiant Dalinar speaks with at face value when she says another Radiant says 'a Desolation is coming') you'd expect there to be an order of magnitude more, minimum. If there were only a few of them, things are easier to explain. Of course, over 50% of the Shards from one group of Radiants from Dalinar's vision are missing, so this evidence sucks.
  • The Heralds are all immortal, and can invest. Maybe because they've got a fair bit of raw Investiture from Honor, but that just supports my OP anyways.
  • The Radiants that Dalinar sees are not young or old enough for him to remark on their age. In fact, the ones he sees at Feverstone Keep in general seem to be handsome and in the prime of their youth. When in Shardplate, age doesn't matter very much, so you'd expect the distribution of aged people to be somewhat less slanted towards handsome people.

Mostly, it's based on the Elantrians and people with lots of Breath. The visual similarities between Surgebinders and Elantrians are hard to ignore. Even people with lots of Breath almost seem to glow, in an odd way, with their altered colors.

Edited by Moogle
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I think that we have WoB somewhere that the Metallic Arts are at a much lower level (in terms of Investiture used) than most other magic systems, so I don't think that savants age slower (except maybe pewter savants, but in that case I think it would have more to do with what pewter does).  

 

I'm pretty sure that Feruchemy uses Investiture, its just never held inside the Feruchemist. I always figured it worked by converting an attribute into Investiture which is stored in metal, then converting that Investiture back into the attribute when it is taken from the metal. No matter how it works though, Feruchemy can't slow age unless its paired with Allomancy, as it is end neutral.

 

I think the mechanism might be a little different from what you're describing though. I don't think that holding Investiture changes someone's personality, seeing how the Heralds ended the Oathpact knowing that they left humanity undefended and how the Returned could be (and were) selfish. I think it is more likely that holding large amounts of Investiture warps someone's Spiritual aspect, overriding any Cognitive or Physical limitations.   

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Tons of speculation dressed up as evidence and stated really confidently! That makes theories more likely to be true, right?

 

Something like that. ;)

 

  • There's only a hundred known Shardblades, in the entire world. If Radiants aged like normal people, over the course of thousands of years (the Radiants have been through several Desolations, if you're willing to take the female Radiant Dalinar speaks with at face value when she says another Radiant says 'a Desolation is coming') you'd expect there to be an order of magnitude more, minimum. If there were only a few of them, things are easier to explain. Of course, over 50% of the Shards from one group of Radiants from Dalinar's vision are missing, so this evidence sucks.

 

You assume here that each Radiant gets a new and unique Blade and that Blades normally outlast their Radiants. (Oooh, new crazy-theory: Blades are new/unique to each owner and, when not "abandoned" like in the vision, are supposed to die with their owners)

 

 

  • The Heralds are all immortal, and can invest. Maybe because they've got a fair bit of raw Investiture from Honor, but that just supports my OP anyways.

 

 

They also have a habit of dying and going to Damnation then coming back to life, so we might not want to use their particular brand of immorality for evidence for anything else just yet.

 

Also, not to nitpick, but we aren't sure that Heralds can Infuse. Darkness==Nalan is just a theory and we haven't seen any other "Heralds" Infuse.

 

 

  • The Radiants that Dalinar sees are not young or old enough for him to remark on their age. In fact, the ones he sees at Feverstone Keep in general seem to be handsome and in the prime of their youth. When in Shardplate, age doesn't matter very much, so you'd expect the distribution of aged people to be somewhat less slanted towards handsome people.

 

 

Now that's fairly compelling evidence. See, this is why we make arguments for things. :)

 

Mostly, it's based on the Elantrians and people with lots of Breath. The visual similarities between Surgebinders and Elantrians are hard to ignore. Even people with lots of Breath almost seem to glow, in an odd way, with their altered colors.

 

A fair enough parallel to draw.

Edited by Kurkistan
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I really like this idea. Maybe this comes from being closer to ascension? It's not anywhere near there yet, but you're near enough to get some of the effects as if you actually had ascended.

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Thinking about it, a similar argument can be made for healing. inquisitors heal quickly as an additional power (they have 9 spikes, the 8 base metals and atium; they have no pewter spike to steal a feruchemical attribute). Holding stormlight heals you. breath makes you resistant to disease. Elantrians also regenerated fast, without needing to heal with aons.

Maybe it's just that investiture makes you stronger in general.

Maybe it strenghten your healty self in the cognitive realm.

Maybe it's coincidence.

Or maybe brandon just gave aging resistance and fast healing as secondary powers to allow the story to unfold properly. An action story would face great troubles if the characters had to wait realistic amounts of time to heal after combat, much better to say that a secondary effect of the magic is to heal faster. And increased age allows an author to pull a few other tricks or better explain a few details.

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Myself, I think that Brandon likes superpower-like magic systems. Almost all superheros have these three things:

- Glowy powers

Because the more light it produces, the more powerful it is

- Accelerated healing

Even if not supernatural, heroes just heal from or ignore injuries after very little time, so they don't spend all their screentime hooked up to an IV with a cast on their everything.

- Unrealistic aging

The oldest indicator that something is more than human? Immortality, or something close.

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Thinking about it, a similar argument can be made for healing. inquisitors heal quickly as an additional power (they have 9 spikes, the 8 base metals and atium; they have no pewter spike to steal a feruchemical attribute). Holding stormlight heals you. breath makes you resistant to disease. Elantrians also regenerated fast, without needing to heal with aons.

Inquisitor's don't need to have all 8 base metals, copper's not particularly useful for them, and they'll already have one ability (They're made from mistings remember) I'm pretty sure we have multiple instances of WoB that they use Feruchemical gold to heal.

Elantrians have a massive Aon targetting them too, so we can't be sure how much is the effect of being an Elantrian and how much is the Aon, even when it's incomplete it keeps them immortal, that being said both Stormlight healing and Breath are I think good examples so it might still work.

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I think there's a decent case to be made for this. I am not sure that it is technically possible for most types of Investiture usage, such as for the Metallic Arts, but I think it is a correct assumption that the closer you get to the power of a Shard (id est holding a bunch of Investiture), the hardier you get - assuming such an amount is possible to attain in a given system (I have my doubts about Stormlight, though. You get to hold more so than with Allomancy or Feruchemy, but probably far below what you can obtain with enough Breaths.

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(I have my doubts about Stormlight, though. You get to hold more so than with Allomancy or Feruchemy, but probably far below what you can obtain with enough Breaths.)

 

Each individual Breath is only a little bit of innate Investiture, though. One Breath can't do much beyond animate an incredibly small doll, whereas one sphere's worth of Stormlight can send a chunk of wall flying away into the sky when used inefficiently by Szeth. There's also the issue that Breaths are 'eternal', and Stormlight is transient. Does Stormlight running out quickly mean that it's using a lot more power in a short amount of time? I don't think it's beyond reason.

 

I'd guess that ~1000 Breaths are roughly equivalent to one freshly-charged broam, based on the power levels. Also, it only takes 2000 Breaths to reach functional immortality. I don't think it's unreasonable to assume that Kaladin passes by thousands of spheres every day while patrolling, and even if he only breathes in a tiny fraction of each gem's Stormlight, that's a fair bit.

 

WoR spoilers:

For my estimate, consider a Divine Breath - it is equivalent to 2000 Breaths, since it grants the Fifth Heightening. One Divine Breath heals someone of all their ailments, which sounds remarkably similar to Regrowth, which takes Lift about one breadroll's worth of Stormlight (which may be about one sphere, since she doesn't start glowing) and she's only spoken one Ideal, so her Stormlight is as efficient as Kaladin's.

 

How much Breath is equivalent to how much Stormlight is something I'd love to ask Brandon, but he rarely does signings in Canada, and when he does it's half the country away from me.

 

Edit: Oh, and further weak evidence for Stormlight slowing aging? Jasnah is remarked upon by Shallan as looking beautiful, despite her age. Jasnah's been capable of using Stormlight for over five years, and we're talking 500 days per year. She might have had her aging slowed.

Edited by Moogle
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Sounds right... Allomancer's don't hold any investiture, they use it up almost instantly and there's only so much they can channel. While Breath can be held for as long as you want. Elantrianiness is same but you can't spend it. I doubt it would work with Stormlight though. We don't know how long it can be kept inside and there's a limit to how much of it can be held at same time. IMO it's limit should be far lower than fifth heightening.

Edited by 213
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We don't know how long it can be kept inside and there's a limit to how much of it can be held at same time.

 

WoR spoilers:

Quite a long time, if Kaladin is anything to go by. My interpretation of this passage is that he has a low-grade burn on whenever he's walking around, and that it's only going to last longer the more Ideals he swears:

 

 

Kaladin sighed, realizing he had a little Stormlight raging in his veins. He hadn’t even noticed drawing it in, but he seemed to be getting better and better at holding it. He frequently took in a little these days while walking about. Holding Stormlight was like filling a wineskin—if you filled it to bursting and unstopped it, it would squirt out quickly, then slow to a trickle. Same with the Light.

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Each individual Breath is only a little bit of innate Investiture, though. One Breath can't do much beyond animate an incredibly small doll, whereas one sphere's worth of Stormlight can send a chunk of wall flying away into the sky when used inefficiently by Szeth. There's also the issue that Breaths are 'eternal', and Stormlight is transient. Does Stormlight running out quickly mean that it's using a lot more power in a short amount of time? I don't think it's beyond reason.

 

I'd guess that ~1000 Breaths are roughly equivalent to one freshly-charged broam, based on the power levels. Also, it only takes 2000 Breaths to reach functional immortality. I don't think it's unreasonable to assume that Kaladin passes by thousands of spheres every day while patrolling, and even if he only breathes in a tiny fraction of each gem's Stormlight, that's a fair bit.

 

WoR spoilers:

For my estimate, consider a Divine Breath - it is equivalent to 2000 Breaths, since it grants the Fifth Heightening. One Divine Breath heals someone of all their ailments, which sounds remarkably similar to Regrowth, which takes Lift about one breadroll's worth of Stormlight (which may be about one sphere, since she doesn't start glowing) and she's only spoken one Ideal, so her Stormlight is as efficient as Kaladin's.

 

How much Breath is equivalent to how much Stormlight is something I'd love to ask Brandon, but he rarely does signings in Canada, and when he does it's half the country away from me.

 

Edit: Oh, and further weak evidence for Stormlight slowing aging? Jasnah is remarked upon by Shallan as looking beautiful, despite her age. Jasnah's been capable of using Stormlight for over five years, and we're talking 500 days per year. She might have had her aging slowed.

You make a fairly strong case. Consider me convinced. At least as much as I can be without further evidence.

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Nothing special on this one.

  • I've previously speculated that constantly holding Stormlight would be enough to stop your aging, based on how the Knights Radiant and Heralds seemed to not age.
  • People with lots of Hemalurgic spikes (Inquisitors) age slower than normal. Spikes can steal innate Investiture.
  • Elantrians, who seem to have an effect similar to holding Stormlight/having raw Investiture pour out of them are near-immortal.

 

The Knights Radiant don't age? Also, I know there are less than a hundred known Shardblades, according to Dalinar who'd know, in "Modern Roshar", but at Feverstone Keep he made a point of noting that of the two orders of Radiants who showed up, there were about 300 Blades. So we know the numbers fluctuate, we don't know why, and nothing about that gives us info on the KRs aging or not. We know the Radiants from the vision with the Midnight Essences were trying to recruit Dalinar. Dunno what that says about aging/not.

 

Inquisitors Heal slower than normal? What/where do we know that from?

 

Elantrians heal fast, yes. They are not immortal. They age and die. Over the course of the first book, the Shaod comes to the people of Kae several times a week; unless that many Elantrians die, the population would be unsustainable.

 

I'd guess that ~1000 Breaths are roughly equivalent to one freshly-charged broam, based on the power levels.

 

That is... rampantly speculative. Just throwing that out there. Can you back it up with anything? Even if you're saying based on mechanical power output... yeah I still disagree, because it's apples and oranges. Lashings are geared specifically to use Stormlight to "fling things about", basically, so it's not implausible that it uses the energy more efficiently in that regard than Breath. Breath, on the other hand, is fundamentally the stuff of life, and so freezing the aging process could well be achieved far more efficiently using it than using Stormlight.

 

Steel, pewter, and duralumin can send a large chunk of metal flying into the sky faster than a Lashing could. Does that mean a few pinches of those metals are more "powerful" than a fully-charged emerald broam? Yet the Light of one broam could heal you so much better than a hundred times that much pewter, even with duralumin. Different magics do different things; that doesn't mean one is more powerful or weaker, and it's the opposite of meaning that every magic system does the same thing (i.e. grant immortality).

 

As for Jasnah's looks... I've read it, especially in the WoR first chapter, that she doesn't look any younger than she is, she's simply more beautiful at her age than most women are. Her own mother, Navani, is another example.

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I also assumed that inquisitors had feruchemical healing, but I'm just rereading the original trilogy, and it was stated that regular inquisitors did not have pewter spikes, which would be needed to give Feruchemical gold. So I assumed I was wrong and they got fast healing as a side effect (by the way, it works quite differently from Feruchemical gold; while other metallic arts granted from the spikes work just the same). unfortunately the coppermind do not clarify the matter. Did brandon specifically clarify the matter?

I'm thinking if we can draw conclusions from kandra and koloss, but the first are quite peculiar to define what constitutes "healing" to them, and the seconds are given extra fortitude as part of their ccreation.

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The Knights Radiant don't age?

 

Speculation for the moment. Forgive me for stating it more confidently than I feel on it.

 

 

Inquisitors Heal slower than normal? What/where do we know that from?

 

Age slower than normal. Marsh mentions that they age, but slowly:

 

"They're... strange, Kell. I don't know. ... I can't find out much about them--though I do know that they age."

"Really?" Kelsier said with interest. "So, they're not immortal?"

"No," Marsh said. "The obligators say that Inquisitors change occasionally. The creatures are very long-lived, but they do eventually die of old age."

 

 

Elantrians heal fast, yes. They are not immortal. They age and die. Over the course of the first book, the Shaod comes to the people of Kae several times a week; unless that many Elantrians die, the population would be unsustainable.

 

I don't have Elantris as an e-book, but you're right: they die. However, it's not because of old age. Elantrians who get tired of life (just because they're immortal doesn't mean they can't get bored) go to Devotion's (?) Shardpool, fall in, and dissolve.

 

That is... rampantly speculative. Just throwing that out there. Can you back it up with anything? Even if you're saying based on mechanical power output... yeah I still disagree, because it's apples and oranges. Lashings are geared specifically to use Stormlight to "fling things about", basically, so it's not implausible that it uses the energy more efficiently in that regard than Breath. Breath, on the other hand, is fundamentally the stuff of life, and so freezing the aging process could well be achieved far more efficiently using it than using Stormlight.

 

Steel, pewter, and duralumin can send a large chunk of metal flying into the sky faster than a Lashing could. Does that mean a few pinches of those metals are more "powerful" than a fully-charged emerald broam? Yet the Light of one broam could heal you so much better than a hundred times that much pewter, even with duralumin. Different magics do different things; that doesn't mean one is more powerful or weaker, and it's the opposite of meaning that every magic system does the same thing (i.e. grant immortality).

 

 

'Rampantly speculative' is an understatement for my numbers on Breath to Stormlight equivalence. And no, a small pinch of metal can't send a large chunk of metal flying into the sky faster than a Lashing; with Duralumin, Vin is barely capable of flinging a few horses around. Furthermore, she can't sustain it, whereas Stormlight Lashings let a chunk fall for upwards of a minute. When Vin literally drew on pure Investiture from Preservation, she was capable of tearing apart a metal building, but she also had her body vaporized from the excess power, so there's that too.

 

As a parallel, note that holding tons of Stormlight makes Kaladin and Szeth feel like they're going to be torn apart, much like Vin with the mists. I don't think this is a coincidence; Stormlight is super super powerful, and there's a lot of it freely available, hence Brandon mentioning that Roshar was a very-high Investiture world. When Kaladin holds a lot of Stormlight, he is basically as powerful as Vin with the mists, probably.

 

Different magics do different things; that doesn't mean one is more powerful or weaker, and it's the opposite of meaning that every magic system does the same thing (i.e. grant immortality).

 

As for Jasnah's looks... I've read it, especially in the WoR first chapter, that she doesn't look any younger than she is, she's simply more beautiful at her age than most women are. Her own mother, Navani, is another example.

 

I'm not discussing different magic systems, I'm discussing raw Investiture specifically, which is what Breath and Stormlight are. They're not really magic systems on their own. I feel that raw Investiture should have similar effects on people who hold it, though with variations based on the Shard that it came from. Immortality seems be a nice perk for the Heralds, Returned, and Elantrians, which makes me suspect that it's common to all Investiture-holders (once they get enough).

 

As to Jasnah's looks, it could just be good genetics, yes. It's weak evidence, and I won't argue the point because you could very well be right.

Edited by Moogle
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The Knights Radiant don't age? Also, I know there are less than a hundred known Shardblades, according to Dalinar who'd know, in "Modern Roshar", but at Feverstone Keep he made a point of noting that of the two orders of Radiants who showed up, there were about 300 Blades. So we know the numbers fluctuate, we don't know why, and nothing about that gives us info on the KRs aging or not. We know the Radiants from the vision with the Midnight Essences were trying to recruit Dalinar. Dunno what that says about aging/not.

Inquisitors Heal slower than normal? What/where do we know that from?

Elantrians heal fast, yes. They are not immortal. They age and die. Over the course of the first book, the Shaod comes to the people of Kae several times a week; unless that many Elantrians die, the population would be unsustainable.

That is... rampantly speculative. Just throwing that out there. Can you back it up with anything? Even if you're saying based on mechanical power output... yeah I still disagree, because it's apples and oranges. Lashings are geared specifically to use Stormlight to "fling things about", basically, so it's not implausible that it uses the energy more efficiently in that regard than Breath. Breath, on the other hand, is fundamentally the stuff of life, and so freezing the aging process could well be achieved far more efficiently using it than using Stormlight.

Steel, pewter, and duralumin can send a large chunk of metal flying into the sky faster than a Lashing could. Does that mean a few pinches of those metals are more "powerful" than a fully-charged emerald broam? Yet the Light of one broam could heal you so much better than a hundred times that much pewter, even with duralumin. Different magics do different things; that doesn't mean one is more powerful or weaker, and it's the opposite of meaning that every magic system does the same thing (i.e. grant immortality).

As for Jasnah's looks... I've read it, especially in the WoR first chapter, that she doesn't look any younger than she is, she's simply more beautiful at her age than most women are. Her own mother, Navani, is another example.

On the steel, pewter, duralumin thing, this a different; they draw the Investiture from Preservation directly, while Stormlight seems to be Investiture itself rather than a gate to it.

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The Knights Radiant don't age? Also, I know there are less than a hundred known Shardblades, according to Dalinar who'd know, in "Modern Roshar", but at Feverstone Keep he made a point of noting that of the two orders of Radiants who showed up, there were about 300 Blades. So we know the numbers fluctuate, we don't know why, and nothing about that gives us info on the KRs aging or not. We know the Radiants from the vision with the Midnight Essences were trying to recruit Dalinar. Dunno what that says about aging/not.

Inquisitors Heal slower than normal? What/where do we know that from?

Elantrians heal fast, yes. They are not immortal. They age and die. Over the course of the first book, the Shaod comes to the people of Kae several times a week; unless that many Elantrians die, the population would be unsustainable.

That is... rampantly speculative. Just throwing that out there. Can you back it up with anything? Even if you're saying based on mechanical power output... yeah I still disagree, because it's apples and oranges. Lashings are geared specifically to use Stormlight to "fling things about", basically, so it's not implausible that it uses the energy more efficiently in that regard than Breath. Breath, on the other hand, is fundamentally the stuff of life, and so freezing the aging process could well be achieved far more efficiently using it than using Stormlight.

Steel, pewter, and duralumin can send a large chunk of metal flying into the sky faster than a Lashing could. Does that mean a few pinches of those metals are more "powerful" than a fully-charged emerald broam? Yet the Light of one broam could heal you so much better than a hundred times that much pewter, even with duralumin. Different magics do different things; that doesn't mean one is more powerful or weaker, and it's the opposite of meaning that every magic system does the same thing (i.e. grant immortality).

As for Jasnah's looks... I've read it, especially in the WoR first chapter, that she doesn't look any younger than she is, she's simply more beautiful at her age than most women are. Her own mother, Navani, is another example.

On the steel, pewter, duralumin thing, this a different; they draw the Investiture from Preservation directly, while Stormlight seems to be Investiture itself rather than a gate to it.

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I just want to point out 1breath is capable of reanimeating a human body so its innate power is reletive its all in how its commanded. They make a point to say that it changed war when they learned the 1 breath command to create lifeless.

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I just want to point out 1breath is capable of reanimeating a human body so its innate power is reletive its all in how its commanded. They make a point to say that it changed war when they learned the 1 breath command to create lifeless.

 

Well, Investiture seems to be a constant, unending power source, at least for Shards.

 

Current, vague, working theory alert! Read at risk of things not being 100% correct.

 

To make an analogy (I can hear everyone sigh already, given my track record with them) with money, imagine if you put 1000 dollars in a bank account and let it gain interest. You can use that interest ($10 a year or whatever) in order to buy something cheap, but keep buying it over and over forever. This would be like animating a human body (which doesn't seem too high power; we humans only use something like 600W, right?). This is Breath.

 

Or, you could splurge and spend all $1000 on one thing and buy something really nice. Like, say, flinging a chunk of wall up in the sky. This is Stormlight, and it only lasts a short period of time, but is capable of higher power feats than Breath.

Edited by Moogle
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Well, Investiture seems to be a constant, unending power source, at least for Shards.

Current, vague, working theory alert! Read at risk of things not being 100% correct.

To make an analogy (I can hear everyone sigh already, given my track record with them) with money, imagine if you put 1000 dollars in a bank account and let it gain interest. You can use that interest ($10 a year or whatever) in order to buy something cheap, but keep buying it over and over forever. This would be like animating a human body (which doesn't seem too high power; we humans only use something like 600W, right?). This is Breath.

Or, you could splurge and spend all $1000 on one thing and buy something really nice. Like, say, flinging a chunk of wall up in the sky. This is Stormlight, and it only lasts a short period of time, but is capable of higher power feats than Breath.

Considering how Nightblood uses Breath, this analogy might be pretty close to the mark.
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(I can hear everyone sigh already, given my track record with them)

I like your analogy. Also, what track record?

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I like your analogy. Also, what track record?

 

Terrible, awkward analogies everywhere. Maybe it hasn't come through on this forum (though I'm positive I made a terrible one when discussing the Alethi response to the assassination of Gavilar) but overall I can't help but make awkward ones when talking to people.

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