Storms!

[OB][SH]Hoid, the Heralds and The Cognitive Shadow Loophole

32 posts in this topic

Spoilers for Oathbringer and Secret History:

 

Ok, so from Secret History we know that:

Spoiler

1. Hoid can't hurt people

and

2. Hoid can hurt/kill cognitive shadows. He tells Kelsier that he's lucky that he didn't want to cause any real damage

We also know from a WoB (I'm terrible at finding these) that the Heralds are cognitive shadows.

 

So my theory question is this: Could Hoid kill the Heralds if he wanted to? I'm thinking that he could.

 

There's also a theory that the way Moash killed Jezrien at the end was a form of Hemalurgy, and I like the theory. If Odium is using Hemalurgy to steal the investiture from the Heralds, then presumably he is gaining some sort of benefit (duh, lol). In order to deny Odium this opportunity, the most simple solution would be to just destroy the Heralds.

 

If Hoid saw this as enough of a threat, I could totally see him wanting to destroy the Heralds, and with The Cognitive Shadow Loophole, I think he would be able to.

 

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I don't think he could destroy them while they were in physical bodies.  If they were floating around in the CR, yeah he could definitely do some things.

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Why not? A cognitive shadow is a cognitive shadow, no?

 

On a fun note: I'm picturing the traitors Ishar and Nale just getting absolutely destroyed by Hoid and him just grinning like an idiot the whole time (like in the SH fight) because he hasn't had a real fight in centuries (millennia?)

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5 minutes ago, Storms! said:

Why not? A cognitive shadow is a cognitive shadow, no?

 

On a fun note: I'm picturing the traitors Ishar and Nale just getting absolutely destroyed by Hoid and him just grinning like an idiot the whole time (like in the SH fight) because he hasn't had a real fight in centuries (millennia?)

Well a Cognitive Shadow is the consciousness of a person (or imprint thereof).  So while they're in bodies, they're tied to the Physical aspect.  If Hoid can harm a Cognitive Shadow while it's in a body, he would be able to hurt the Cognitive self of any being, it seems.

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3 minutes ago, Storms! said:

Why not? A cognitive shadow is a cognitive shadow, no?

Yeah, but the meat it's wearing might count for something. We don't know either way, and it might be different for different kinds of CS/meat combinations.

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12 minutes ago, Storms! said:

Why not? A cognitive shadow is a cognitive shadow, no?

Because in a physical body, they would are somewhat alive again. His restriction likely doesn't work against cognitive shadows when they are in the cognitive realm due to them not being physically alive. 

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I love quoting this WoB, and I have to do it so much XD

 

Quote

 

kalamitous_emoashions [PENDING REVIEW]

Have we seen any evidence of Hemalurgy on Roshar? And, as sort of an addendum, given the end of Oathbringer, was what happened to Jezrien Hemalurgy?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

There are certain cosmere philosophers that would count it. I would divide it as two separate things that are using similar fundamentals... I wouldn't call it myself, but there are people who would disagree with me in-world. Have we seen evidence? I would say no evidence that is easily-- easy to pick out.

kalamitous_emoashions [PENDING REVIEW]

But it's there?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

Yes, there are people with Hemalurgy who have been to Roshar. I'm pretty sure they've been on-screen.

 

So yeah....

I also have a theory that Odium was messing with Dalinar's Spirit Web in their confrontation...

Quote

He felt each death like a spike driven into his soul

Odium was probably transforming him into his Champion there.

Edited by Blazenella
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2 minutes ago, Blazenella said:

I love quoting this WoB, and I have to do it so much XD

 

So yeah....

Sorry, I'm tired.  I don't quite understand the relevance to this thread?

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1 minute ago, RShara said:

Sorry, I'm tired.  I don't quite understand the relevance to this thread?

From the original post XD

1 hour ago, Storms! said:

There's also a theory that the way Moash killed Jezrien at the end was a form of Hemalurgy, and I like the theory. If Odium is using Hemalurgy to steal the investiture from the Heralds, then presumably he is gaining some sort of benefit (duh, lol). In order to deny Odium this opportunity, the most simple solution would be to just destroy the Heralds.

 

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1 hour ago, Storms! said:

If Hoid saw this as enough of a threat, I could totally see him wanting to destroy the Heralds, and with The Cognitive Shadow Loophole, I think he would be able to.

We know he's stealing invested items and investiture from every shardworld he can reach. I wouldn't put it past him to try to steal a Herald's investiture for himself in a similar fashion to what we saw with Jezrien. 

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Ah thanks.

But that would involve harming the physical self, so I don't think Hoid could do it.  Personally, anyway.

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7 hours ago, Storms! said:

We also know from a WoB (I'm terrible at finding these) that the Heralds are cognitive shadows.

So my theory question is this: Could Hoid kill the Heralds if he wanted to? I'm thinking that he could.

I'm also not very practiced with finding WoBs (I've... actually never tried it before), but I feel like someone should fish around to find this one, just because of its relevance to this thread.  I would like to see the exact wording that Brandon used when he said that the Heralds are cognitive shadows.  This concept is confusing to me, because the Heralds are people with flesh and substance, and from what I understand about cognitive shadows, they are more like spirits - transitory and intangible.  I have a hard time understanding how the Heralds could be cognitive spirits any more than normal humans could.

7 hours ago, RShara said:

Well a Cognitive Shadow is the consciousness of a person (or imprint thereof).  So while they're in bodies, they're tied to the Physical aspect.  If Hoid can harm a Cognitive Shadow while it's in a body, he would be able to hurt the Cognitive self of any being, it seems.

If a cognitive shadow is the part of a person that exists in the Cognitive Realm, then how are the Heralds "cognitive shadows?"  Yes, they have a representation in the Cognitive Realm, but so do normal humans, and they are not considered cognitive shadows.  Maybe what Brandon means is that the Heralds are more closely tied to the Cognitive Realm than normal humans for some reason, making them more "cognitive shadow-y."

The little flame in the Cognitive Realm that appears to represent a human cannot be altered or wounded from the Cognitive Realm, from what we understand - it is just a shadow  of the person residing in the Physical Realm.  If the person is killed in the Physical Realm, then the little fire will blink out.  Perhaps the Heralds are cognitive shadows because they have a strong presence in both Realms, so that their little flame in the Cognitive Realm isn't just a reflection of their physical form, but a tangible entity that can be killed or interacted with.    

Edited by Llarimar
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I am also reminded of this scene:

Quote

Here a child - two or three years old - huddled and trembled, clutching a stuffed soldier.  Several spren with soft red glows were picking at him like cremlings at a corpse.

... Kaladin reacted with swift, immediate rage.  He growled, seizing the Sylblade from the air, forming a small dagger from mist.  He drove the dagger forward and caught one of the spren, pinning it to the wall's wooden paneling.  He had never known a Shardblade to cut a spren before, but this worked.  The thing screamed in a soft voice, a hundred hands coming from its shape and scraping at the Blade, at the wall, until it seemed to rip into a thousand tiny pieces, then faded.

The three other red spren streaked away in panic.  In his hands, Kaladin felt Syl tremble, then groan softly.  He released her, and she took the shape of a small woman.  "That was... that was terrible," she whispered, floating over to land on his soldier.  "Did we... just kill a spren?"  (pg. 812-813)

This is the only example I can think of where we see someone kill a cognitive shadow.  I am not sure what the relevance of this scene is to this particular discussion, or to Hoid's potential ability to kill a cognitive shadow.  But I think it's interesting that both Kaladin and Syl seemed surprised that they are able to kill a spren.  Perhaps it is something that can only happen impulsively, like sucking in Stormlight for the first time.  If Knights Radiant can kill cognitive shadows, and Heralds are cognitive shadows (whatever that means), then they might be able to kill Heralds too - but kill them permanently, like Moash did, without sending them back to Damnation like Jasnah wants.  If Hoid does set out on a mission to kill the Heralds, he may try to enlist the help of some of the Knights Radiant, since they can apparently kill cognitive shadows as well.  

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1 hour ago, Llarimar said:

I'm also not very practiced with finding WoBs (I've... actually never tried it before), but I feel like someone should fish around to find this one, just because of its relevance to this thread.  I would like to see the exact wording that Brandon used when he said that the Heralds are cognitive shadows.  This concept is confusing to me, because the Heralds are people with flesh and substance, and from what I understand about cognitive shadows, they are more like spirits - transitory and intangible.  I have a hard time understanding how the Heralds could be cognitive spirits any more than normal humans could.

If a cognitive shadow is the part of a person that exists in the Cognitive Realm, then how are the Heralds "cognitive shadows?"  Yes, they have a representation in the Cognitive Realm, but so do normal humans, and they are not considered cognitive shadows.  Maybe what Brandon means is that the Heralds are more closely tied to the Cognitive Realm than normal humans for some reason, making them more "cognitive shadow-y."

The little flame in the Cognitive Realm that appears to represent a human cannot be altered or wounded from the Cognitive Realm, from what we understand - it is just a shadow  of the person residing in the Physical Realm.  If the person is killed in the Physical Realm, then the little fire will blink out.  Perhaps the Heralds are cognitive shadows because they have a strong presence in both Realms, so that their little flame in the Cognitive Realm isn't just a reflection of their physical form, but a tangible entity that can be killed or interacted with.    

Have you read Secret History?

 

Also, yes https://wob.coppermind.net/events/312-orem-signing/#e8942

Quote

Questioner [PENDING REVIEW]

Hypothetically speaking, if some of the main Radiants were to die at the end of book 5, go to Braize and then spend the time in between 5 and 6 there, would they age?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

There are lots of problems with that question.  If a Radiant dies, they don't go to Braize. A Herald would, but a Herald is a Cognitive Shadow, so there's inherent problems in there.  When you're a Cognitive Shadow, aging is different there, because you're basically a ghost.  Even if you've been stapled to a body, it happens weirdly.  So there's all kinds of flaws in that question.

 

Edited by RShara
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Just now, RShara said:

Have you read Secret History?

Yes.  About Secret History: 

Spoiler

Kelsier in the Secret History is how I imagine a human manifested as a cognitive shadow.  He is sort of like a spirit, incorporeal and able to slip through walls and sink into the floor.  The Cognitive Realm in Scadrial, however, is clearly different than it is in Roshar, so perhaps the manifestation of a cognitive shadow is different on both worlds.  But comparing the two, I can easily understand that Kelsier in Secret History is a cognitive shadow, while I am confused by the idea of the Heralds being cognitive shadows since they seem so grounded in the Physical Realm.

 

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25 minutes ago, Llarimar said:

Yes.  About Secret History: 

  Hide contents

Kelsier in the Secret History is how I imagine a human manifested as a cognitive shadow.  He is sort of like a spirit, incorporeal and able to slip through walls and sink into the floor.  The Cognitive Realm in Scadrial, however, is clearly different than it is in Roshar, so perhaps the manifestation of a cognitive shadow is different on both worlds.  But comparing the two, I can easily understand that Kelsier in Secret History is a cognitive shadow, while I am confused by the idea of the Heralds being cognitive shadows since they seem so grounded in the Physical Realm.

 

Right, so on Scadrial, people who are also physical appear as dim, misty versions of themselves.  When they're fully in the CR, as CS or whatever, they are full-color, normal versions of themselves.

So on Roshar, people who are also physical appear as flames.  Cognitive Shadows would be like Kaladin&Co while they were in the CR, or like the Fused, except not corrupted:

Quote

Hundreds upon hundreds of strange spren stood in the lake of beads that marked the shore of Thaylen City. They looked vaguely humanoid, though they were twisted and odd, like shimmering dark light. More the scribbled outlines of people, like drawings she’d done in a maddened state.

 

Because they're stapled into a body, as the phrase goes, they appear like other people, but their tie to the PR is artificial.

And also https://wob.coppermind.net/events/312-orem-signing/#e8942

Quote

Questioner [PENDING REVIEW]

Hypothetically speaking, if some of the main Radiants were to die at the end of book 5, go to Braize and then spend the time in between 5 and 6 there, would they age?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

There are lots of problems with that question.  If a Radiant dies, they don't go to Braize. A Herald would, but a Herald is a Cognitive Shadow, so there's inherent problems in there.  When you're a Cognitive Shadow, aging is different there, because you're basically a ghost.  Even if you've been stapled to a body, it happens weirdly.  So there's all kinds of flaws in that question.

That scene with Kaladin was killing a spren in the physical realm, not killing a cognitive shadow ;)

Edited by RShara
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22 minutes ago, RShara said:

Right, so on Scadrial, people who are also physical appear as dim, misty versions of themselves.  When they're fully in the CR, as CS or whatever, they are full-color, normal versions of themselves.

So on Roshar, people who are also physical appear as flames.  Cognitive Shadows would be like Kaladin&Co while they were in the CR, or like the Fused, except not corrupted

Okay, I think I understand better, but it's a lot to process.  So cognitive shadows are beings who are fully in the cognitive realm, like Kaladin and the others while they're exploring Shadesmar, and cognitive shadows manifest differently in Scadiral and on Roshar.  So the fact that [SPOILER!] Kelsier is technically dead in SH is not necessarily what makes him a cognitive shadow - he is a cognitive shadow because he is fully in the Cognitive Realm, like Kaladin and friends in Shadesmar.  

I... still am a bit confused as to how the Heralds are cognitive shadows, since they are not fully in the Cognitive Realm.  They at least seem to be firmly grounded in the Physical Realm.  Perhaps they are cognitive shadows because they are whole entities that exist fully in the Cognitive Realm (like Kelsier in SH), but who are stapled to a body in the Physical Realm.  Because of this, when they are killed, their "spirit" (or whatever it is), which is fully in the Cognitive Realm, just de-attaches from the body it was stapled to.  

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Sorry, no.  I think I'm explaining this badly.  It's late, I'm sick, and my brain is fuzzy :)

So Kaladin and the others weren't CS.  They had transitioned their physical bodies into the CR, so they were living people with physical aspects, who had slipped into the CR.

CS are sapient beings who have died.  And their consciousness, or self, have not gone Beyond, thanks to Investiture. Kelsier was a CS.  Kaladin & Co would appear normally to a CS because they were fully in the CR, even though they still had physical bodies.  I was using them as a contrast to the appearance of normal flames of minds.  I didn't mean to imply they were CS, just that they looked like normal people in the CR.

 

While in bodies, the Heralds would look pretty much like every other mind to someone in the CR.  A flame.  They *might* have a bit more of a cognitive presence, so maybe a larger flame, or a flame shaped like a person?  Unknown.  But they HAVE died, and so their tie to a physical body is artificial, created by an infusion of investiture.  They have some more limitations, such as Kelsier had when trying to use Preservation's power, trying to get too far from the main body of the investiture that powers them, etc.

If their connection to the physical were severed, they would then appear again in the CR as cognitive shadows.  They wouldn't be threatened by the Beyond, because they're already invested enough to remain.

Quote

Because of this, when they are killed, their "spirit" (or whatever it is), which is fully in the Cognitive Realm, just de-attaches from the body it was stapled to.  

That's basically what I'm trying to say.

Edited by RShara
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15 minutes ago, RShara said:

Kaladin and the others weren't CS.  They had transitioned their physical bodies into the CR, so they were living people with physical aspects, who had slipped into the CR.

CS are sapient beings who have died.  And their consciousness, or self, have not gone Beyond, thanks to Investiture.

All right, I understand now.  The Heralds and Kelsier = cognitive shadows, because they have died, but Investiture keeps them around, while Kaladin and any other Shadesmar travelers would not be considered CS because they are still alive and are just "visiting."

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1 minute ago, Llarimar said:

All right, I understand now.  The Heralds and Kelsier = cognitive shadows, because they have died, but Investiture keeps them around, while Kaladin and any other Shadesmar travelers would not be considered CS because they are still alive and are just "visiting."

Yes, that's it exactly.

 

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So does this mean Hoid can kill the fused who are still waiting to get a body?

Though killing Odium's soldiers might draw his attention so I understand why he would not.

Edited by ghajan monk
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I took away something totally different from SH

Spoiler

Hoid was only able to beat up Kel  because he was a CS and was doing no real harm. Even afterwards he gave a Kel a lesson saying it only hurts because you think it should. With the proper knowledge Kel would of just shook off any hits like hoid shook off Kel attacks. I always felt that was the loophole he exploited. 

 

Edited by garlick
Auto correct error
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23 hours ago, Storms! said:

Why not? A cognitive shadow is a cognitive shadow, no?

 

On a fun note: I'm picturing the traitors Ishar and Nale just getting absolutely destroyed by Hoid and him just grinning like an idiot the whole time (like in the SH fight) because he hasn't had a real fight in centuries (millennia?)

I'd say it really depended on whatever oath is holding Hoid back. If his oath is he cant do physical harm then I definately think Everything Rshara said is correct. If however he can't hurt any living being we might get into some interesting territory like you were saying :)

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On 1/13/2018 at 1:58 PM, garlick said:

I took away something totally different from SH

  Hide contents

Hoid was only able to beat up Kel  because he was a CS and was doing no real harm. Even afterwards he gave a Kel a lesson saying it only hurts because you think it should. With the proper knowledge Kel would of just shook off any hits like hoid shook off Kel attacks. I always felt that was the loophole he exploited. 

 

You're probably right on this one. This thread was more wishful thinking/fun than an actual concrete theory.

I'm glad I made it now though because that's the best explanation of that scene that I've heard!

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EDITED:

The shard, where scholarship and truth reign supreme, and has confirmed my initial conclusion that Venn diagrams are pretty worthless visualizations. These have been removed for the good of the cosmere.

As Master Control Program would say, End of Line.

Edited by hoiditthroughthegrapevine
Ok, so the charts are dirty diapers and have to go.
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