Oltux72

Death of a Cognitive Shadow

16 posts in this topic

What happens when a Cognitve Shadow is extnguished at last? Khrisella considers the question whether a CS is identical to the original individual to be philosophical and debatable. So if a CS is wholly made up of Investiture, does it still have a soul? As it refuses to go into the Beyond, is the soul replaced? If so, silver really annikilates a CS.

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Setting aside the in-universe debate over whether a Cogniive Shadow is really the original person or just a copy (Secret History rather suggests the former) yes, we know that they have a soul. In the Cosmere, soul=Spiritweb=your Spiritual aspect. That stays with the Cognitive Shadow and explains why the Heralds and Kelsier still look like themselves when they get new bodies. Brandon kind of conflates the Cognitive aspect with the soul sometimes, but this WoB here has him stating that a CS functions on two of the three Realms.

So yes, if a CS 'dies' then it's the same as when someone dies normally. The Physical body stays in that realm (if they have one, like the Returned), the Cognitive aspect goes Beyond and the Spiritual aspect hangs around.

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Whether it's really the person or a copy isn't ever going to be answered. Brandon wants each reader to decide that for themselves, based on their beliefs and philosophy.

When the CS goes Beyond, anything made of investiture remains and gets returned to the cycle, just the same as if they had involuntarily gone Beyond like normal people.

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12 hours ago, Weltall said:

Setting aside the in-universe debate over whether a Cogniive Shadow is really the original person or just a copy (Secret History rather suggests the former) yes, we know that they have a soul. In the Cosmere, soul=Spiritweb=your Spiritual aspect. That stays with the Cognitive Shadow and explains why the Heralds and Kelsier still look like themselves when they get new bodies. Brandon kind of conflates the Cognitive aspect with the soul sometimes, but this WoB here has him stating that a CS functions on two of the three Realms.

So yes, if a CS 'dies' then it's the same as when someone dies normally. The Physical body stays in that realm (if they have one, like the Returned), the Cognitive aspect goes Beyond and the Spiritual aspect hangs around.

Well, the same WoB:

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A Cognitive Shadow simply means a copy of the Cognitive side made by a deep amount of Investiture. And everybody has a Cognitive side. Basically it's a fake soul. Or, fake is the wrong term. Fake is the wrong term. Even in-world they don't know if it's really them or not. It is Investiture has replaced the Investiture that is fleeing from them as they die, or enhancing it in some way to keep it around.

 

How does operating on all realms (which everything does) tell us what happens after death. If they are made out of something that cannot be destroyed their substance will be recycled.

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On 7/13/2019 at 2:07 AM, Oltux72 said:

Well, the same WoB:

How does operating on all realms (which everything does) tell us what happens after death. If they are made out of something that cannot be destroyed their substance will be recycled.

How does their substance matter when considering what happens after death? It would seem to me that he has quite clearly explained what happens in Secret History if you have read it. The body stays in the physical and decays being re-used. The mind comes to term with death and depending on their mental state they react differently but most choose to go the the Beyond, the place where the Spiritual portion exists in a state of rest and peace. Their is no information that tells us they will be recycled. You need to stop thinking in terms of the laws of our reality, the Shards constantly create new things from nothing but their own powers so the only recycling would be returning the power to the Shard imho.

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51 minutes ago, Notchbeard said:

most choose to go the the Beyond, the place where the Spiritual portion exists in a state of rest and peace.

The Spiritual realm is an actual thing, the beyond is a view of the afterlife that may or may not be more than a belief--as an in-world theory, the existence of the beyond will never be confirmed or denied.

https://wob.coppermind.net/events/31-arcanum-unbounded-release-party/#e1729

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On 7/13/2019 at 5:07 AM, Oltux72 said:

If they are made out of something that cannot be destroyed their substance will be recycled.

I mean, the matter that a person's physical body is made of isn't destroyed either (barring certain weird circumstances).  After someone dies their body gets "recycled" by the ecosystem and turned into something else.  The person is still gone, though.  

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On 7/12/2019 at 3:25 PM, Oltux72 said:

What happens when a Cognitve Shadow is extnguished at last?

I would imagine that it is probably the same as if they had not become a Cognitive Shadow in the first place, since when Kelsier as a Cognitive Shadow is badly wounded by Ruin, he feels the 'pull of the Beyond' in the same way he did before he jumped into the Well (though successfully resists it, since he had held the Shard Preservation by then).

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I have a personal head-cannon theory that there is one death corresponding to each Realm.

In life a Person exists on three realms - Physical, Cognitive, Spiritual. That death makes a Cognitive Shadow, which exists on two realms - Cognitive and Spiritual. Then, there is one additional state, one which we haven't directly seen yet, where the person exists only in the Spritual. And then there is true death, where even that is wiped off. But that may be a bit wonky considering how the Spiritual is outside time.

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On 7/16/2019 at 4:27 PM, Scion of the Mists said:

I mean, the matter that a person's physical body is made of isn't destroyed either (barring certain weird circumstances).  After someone dies their body gets "recycled" by the ecosystem and turned into something else.  The person is still gone, though.  

Correct. And the same would apply to one's cognitive aspect.

 

On 7/16/2019 at 2:35 PM, Notchbeard said:

How does their substance matter when considering what happens after death?

Because Investiture cannot be lost. If something goes to the beyond it is lost. Hence what goes to the Beyond cannot be made from Investiture.

On 7/16/2019 at 2:35 PM, Notchbeard said:

It would seem to me that he has quite clearly explained what happens in Secret History if you have read it. The body stays in the physical and decays being re-used. The mind comes to term with death and depending on their mental state they react differently but most choose to go the the Beyond, the place where the Spiritual portion exists in a state of rest and peace.

Well, we know nothing about the Beyond. But, yes, the spiritual part goes there.

Bands of Mourning:

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"Your body, mind and soul have separated. Soon one will return to the earth, another to the cosmere, and the third ... Even I do not know."

A Cognitive Shadow is a mind that does not dissolve. So is the spirit held back. Brandon said:

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but their soul has been somehow transformed. It's not really transformed, it's been reproduced or copied by an injection of Investiture...

So they have replaced or reproduced the soul. But it is made of Investiture, which cannot be lost. It would be interesting to know what happened to the original soul, but that is tangential. Their new "fake/replacement soul" is made of Investiture, not whatever, presumably spiritual, stuff souls are made of. Hence they cannot go to the Beyond.

On 7/18/2019 at 6:52 AM, cometaryorbit said:

since when Kelsier as a Cognitive Shadow is badly wounded by Ruin, he feels the 'pull of the Beyond' in the same way he did before he jumped into the Well (though successfully resists it, since he had held the Shard Preservation by then).

That may just as well have been the feeling of beginning dissolution of the mind.

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On 7/31/2019 at 3:04 PM, Oltux72 said:

Well, we know nothing about the Beyond. But, yes, the spiritual part goes there.

Actually, I believe the Cognitive goes Beyond, the Spiritual lingers in the Spiritual Realm and slowly 'dissolves' or whatever.

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So they have replaced or reproduced the soul. But it is made of Investiture, which cannot be lost. It would be interesting to know what happened to the original soul, but that is tangential. Their new "fake/replacement soul" is made of Investiture, not whatever, presumably spiritual, stuff souls are made of. Hence they cannot go to the Beyond.

Well, souls are probably made of Investiture anyway (Nightblood can eat them, per WoB), probably in addition to Connection (and maybe Fortune and Identity, the other two Spiritual attributes in Feruchemy?). The "fake" aspect of it is questionable - a Cognitve Shadow not being the "real" person is an in-world debated theory among cosmere scholars.

(Kelsier's POV in Secret History shows continuity from life to being a cognitive shadow.)

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Posted (edited)

Investiture never leaves the Cosmere. Never. 

So either living things have something additional which can go Beyond, a "soul" in the religious sense, or death is oblivion. 

If a Cognitive Shadow is unable to go Beyond, then a spren wouldn't either, as they're both sapient Cognitive entities composed of Investiture. 

What you choose to believe happens is up to you, but the composition of a Sapient entity should have no bearing on the existence of the Beyond. 

Edited by Calderis
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On 8/2/2019 at 9:05 PM, Calderis said:

Investiture never leaves the Cosmere. Never. 

So either living things have something additional which can go Beyond, a "soul" in the religious sense, or death is oblivion.

That is the logical conclusion and Harmony very much confirms that there is a soul beside a body and a mind. That, however, informs us only about a corporal entity.

On 8/2/2019 at 9:05 PM, Calderis said:

If a Cognitive Shadow is unable to go Beyond, then a spren wouldn't either, as they're both sapient Cognitive entities composed of Investiture.

Right. Yet we have never observed the death of a spren. We have observed the death of numerous Cognitive Shadows, albeit in the Physical Realm. They do not show the stretching.

On 8/2/2019 at 9:05 PM, Calderis said:

What you choose to believe happens is up to you, but the composition of a Sapient entity should have no bearing on the existence of the Beyond. 

No, but the impact is on its ability to go there. A place does not cease to exist because some cannot go there.
Investiture does not leave the Cosmere.

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3 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

No, but the impact is on its ability to go there. A place does not cease to exist because some cannot go there.

And that's my point exactly. Nothing is keeping them from going. They just don't feel the pull. 

We've seen multiple CS leave for the Beyond by choice. Rashek, Vin, and Ati all left, and all had no need to go.

The difference isn't that they can't, they just aren't compelled.

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6 hours ago, Calderis said:

And that's my point exactly. Nothing is keeping them from going. They just don't feel the pull. 

That they can leave does not mean they will also arrive where they want to go.

6 hours ago, Calderis said:

We've seen multiple CS leave for the Beyond by choice. Rashek, Vin, and Ati all left, and all had no need to go.

Well, not exactly. They all went after a brief period. If Waxillium is not a Cognitive Shadow now, the separation is not irreversible immediately. But your soul will not linger indefinitely. As Brandon said, the original soul is converted into Investiture.

6 hours ago, Calderis said:

The difference isn't that they can't, they just aren't compelled.

But what can they do?

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2 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

That they can leave does not mean they will also arrive where they want to go.

There's only one destination. They leave or they stay. 

2 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

Well, not exactly. They all went after a brief period. If Waxillium is not a Cognitive Shadow now, the separation is not irreversible immediately. But your soul will not linger indefinitely. As Brandon said, the original soul is converted into Investiture.

Wax isn't a Cognitive Shadow because he was resurrected prior to the point of separation and the Beyond. The "conversion to Investiture" is Brandon's take on the Ship of Theseus debate. The soul, over time or through a massive influx (Ala a shard or Kel and Rashek with the Well) is replaced or petrified with Investiture. Is it a copy? If it is in all ways the same thing but the composition has been replaced with something else, is it the same person? The "soul" in this sense is a debatable thing. As I said either there is something else that goes beyond other than Investiture, or nothing does. Considering that we see CS choose to leave, I'd have to think that whatever extra remains. But it's completely up to reader interpretation. 

2 hours ago, Oltux72 said:

But what can they do?

I'm not sure I understand the question? What more do they need than the potential for eternal existence and, given the proper knowledge and materials and/or natural mechanisms, the chance at rebirth? 

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