Ixthos

Renarin's name - what I'm hoping Brandon ISN'T doing

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So... funny story that this thread has reminded me of.  I once had a dream that I was reading a Mistborn book, and it said something like, "Vin was flying over Luthadel.  She passed by a cathedral, where worshippers were gathering.  A new religion had been forming in the city, called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and its followers were called Mormons.  Vin wasn't sure about this new religion..."  And I remember being so shocked and disappointed in the dream, like, "Why would he do this?  Why is he using his books as a religious soapbox?  He's broken the fourth wall!"  :lol::lol::lol:  It was very funny.   

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2 hours ago, Llarimar said:

So... funny story that this thread has reminded me of.  I once had a dream that I was reading a Mistborn book, and it said something like, "Vin was flying over Luthadel.  She passed by a cathedral, where worshippers were gathering.  A new religion had been forming in the city, called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and its followers were called Mormons.  Vin wasn't sure about this new religion..."  And I remember being so shocked and disappointed in the dream, like, "Why would he do this?  Why is he using his books as a religious soapbox?  He's broken the fourth wall!"  :lol::lol::lol:  It was very funny.   

Bro, that is weirder than my dreams.

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On 1/16/2021 at 10:27 AM, AquaRegia said:

I’m not a Christian, so I neither share nor completely understand your concerns.  Obviously, you are free to take or leave my thoughts on the matter to whatever degree you wish.  I do consider myself tolerant of the beliefs of others, and I try to be open-minded.  I’m also not an atheist; seems to me that taking the position “I’m sure there is no god” is every bit as presumptuous as saying “I’m sure my god is the one TRUE god.”  It makes sense to me than an infinite god, if there is one, will create/allow a variety of paths to spirituality.

Brandon has made it clear that one his motivations for writing fantasy is to explore how religion works to shape individuals and cultures.  What he has accomplished so far - most clearly on Roshar and Scadrial - has been absolutely amazing.  The variety of religious beliefs which is represented is stunning.  And the simple fact is that when different cultures, sects, or characters have differing religious beliefs, some will contradict others.  What is holy to one will be heresy to another; your orthodoxy may be my blasphemy.  I think that’s part of what he is trying to explore in all his work.  He is certainly drawing intentional religious parallels between his fictional universe and the one we live in… and that includes intolerance, idolatry, heresy, and the very concept of divinity.

The Cosmere is a fictional universe, presumably one in which Jesus and Christianity do not exist.  My hope is that readers do not cause themselves trouble by inserting their “real-world” ideas of heresy to this work of imagination.   Should we be dismayed by the lack of Jehovah or Allah in the Lord of the Rings?  Should we ban Harry Potter for being “antichristian”?  I think such reactions demonstrate, in the real world, the very kinds of strife Brandon is warning us about in his novels.  The trappings of religion - what words you say or DON'T say, what clothes you wear, how names are spelled, whether a word has a capital letter or not - are all really just trivial details compared to the spiritual and emotional reasons that religions exist.

Dalinar’s god, the god of Vorinism, was a combination of the Shard Honor and a man, Tanavast, who is now dead.  Yet Dalinar continues to believe in a God Beyond.  We’ve already seen multiple (human) characters in the Cosmere become the origin of a new religion.  In the same way, every single form of religious practice on Earth today has individual humans at its start, yet each of them also claims “divine” origin.  Is it not possible that all our different ways of worship are really connected to “God Beyond”?  Different paths, same destination?  Let’s not get bent out of shape by someone taking a different path.  If your path is working for you, why does it matter if someone else capitalizes a G?

The closest thing to old school Catholic-type Christianity in the Cosmere is the religion intentionally started by a conartist who is currently playing antagonist in another series. It makes me laugh every single time I really consider it. The parallels are completely intentional - in and out of world - but Kelsier is the least Jesus-like person you could think of to end up in that role. It’s like Brandon went: ‘what if Jesus was a psychopath, a conartist and a radical revolutionary who doesn’t know when to stay dead or stop meddling?’

(Of course if you’re Jewish, like me, it’s a very accurate depiction. Except that we think he stayed very dead. But, y’know, our opinion isn’t the most popular one.)

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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1 hour ago, Kingsdaughter613 said:

 It’s like Brandon went: ‘what if Jesus was a psychopath, a conartist and a radical revolutionary who doesn’t know when to stay dead or stop meddling?’

(Of course if you’re Jewish, like me, it’s a very accurate depiction. Except that we think he stayed very dead. But, y’know, our opinion isn’t the most popular one.)

I have to hard disagree, but that's funny enough I'll rep you.

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1 minute ago, Frustration said:

I have to hard disagree, but that's funny enough I'll rep you.

Why do you disagree? The Rabbis are pretty clear on their opinions of ‘that man.’ Or do you disagree with their general opinion?

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Just now, Kingsdaughter613 said:

Why do you disagree? The Rabbis are pretty clear on their opinions of ‘that man.’ Or do you disagree with their general opinion?

the opinion.

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52 minutes ago, Frustration said:

the opinion.

Like I said, most people disagree with us. Though I doubt it’s that shocking that we aren’t too fond of him.

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13 hours ago, Frustration said:

Sure ask away.

Thanks :-)

  • does the tree have an ultimate root - i.e. do you believe there was an original God who wasn't once a man?
  • how did the universe begin, did a god make it?
  • does the family tree have those further along the tree interacting with those later down? That is, is the previous god still in contact with the god who made the god who made them, and what relation would they have to the men who haven't yet become gods, etc.?

 

@Kingsdaughter613 an understandable view, though obviously one I disagree with. What I do find very interesting is that many of the Messianic Jews (Jews who became Christian) I know tend to be among the most devout Christians. I'm actually engaging in a theological discussion with @Trutharchivist in PM that touches on the differences and similarities between Christian and Jewish theology. If he is up for it, would you like to join?

 

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2 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

Thanks :-)

  • does the tree have an ultimate root - i.e. do you believe there was an original God who wasn't once a man?
  • how did the universe begin, did a god make it?
  • does the family tree have those further along the tree interacting with those later down? That is, is the previous god still in contact with the god who made the god who made them, and what relation would they have to the men who haven't yet become gods, etc.?

Ok deep questions here I don't have a solid answer for the first question but the others are there.

  1. I am not sure, there might be official docterin on that but I haven't found it, I have wondered myself about it. My favorite theory at the moment is along the lines of Time Travel/cyclation
  2. God(our God) made the Universe we are in, but he made it from more "Primal materials" as I understand it.
  3. So, think of it as each God being a Father to their perspective Human population, just because they are a Father doesn't mean they are Our Father, We have One Father and One God, the others while there, are not ours.
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9 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

Thanks :-)

  • does the tree have an ultimate root - i.e. do you believe there was an original God who wasn't once a man?
  • how did the universe begin, did a god make it?
  • does the family tree have those further along the tree interacting with those later down? That is, is the previous god still in contact with the god who made the god who made them, and what relation would they have to the men who haven't yet become gods, etc.?

 

@Kingsdaughter613 an understandable view, though obviously one I disagree with. What I do find very interesting is that many of the Messianic Jews (Jews who became Christian) I know tend to be among the most devout Christians. I'm actually engaging in a theological discussion with @Trutharchivist in PM that touches on the differences and similarities between Christian and Jewish theology. If he is up for it, would you like to join?

 

Sure. It could be interesting. There are a lot of differences (and loads of things people don’t know, like Moshe’s staff being sapphire.)

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1 minute ago, Frustration said:

Ok deep questions here I don't have a solid answer for the first question but the others are there.

  1. I am not sure, there might be official docterin on that but I haven't found it, I have wondered myself about it. My favorite theory at the moment is along the lines of Time Travel/cyclation
  2. God(our God) made the Universe we are in, but he made it from more "Primal materials" as I understand it.
  3. So, think of it as each God being a Father to their perspective Human population, just because they are a Father doesn't mean they are Our Father, We have One Father and One God, the others while there, are not ours.

Thank you for responding - I guess those are deep questions and would be tricky to answer. Let me think on the answers for a bit and I'll see if I can hopefully ask some more clarifying questions later (there seems to be a link between idea 1 and idea 2 with the cycles). Until then I hope you have a great day!

 

Just now, Kingsdaughter613 said:

Sure. It could be interesting. There are a lot of differences (and loads of things people don’t know, like Moshe’s staff being sapphire.)

Great :-) let's wait to see if @Trutharchivist agrees and we can go from there. I will admit, I'd never heard that the staff was sapphire - I was under the impression that it was the same one he had when he encountered the burning bush, and was a simple shepherd's staff. (Also, didn't Aaron's staff bloom with almond blossoms? Was his staff made from a different material?)

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Just now, Ixthos said:

Thank you for responding - I guess those are deep questions and would be tricky to answer. Let me think on the answers for a bit and I'll see if I can hopefully ask some more clarifying questions later (there seems to be a link between idea 1 and idea 2 with the cycles). Until then I hope you have a great day!

Will, do, thanks.

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5 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

Thank you for responding - I guess those are deep questions and would be tricky to answer. Let me think on the answers for a bit and I'll see if I can hopefully ask some more clarifying questions later (there seems to be a link between idea 1 and idea 2 with the cycles). Until then I hope you have a great day!

 

Great :-) let's wait to see if @Trutharchivist agrees and we can go from there. I will admit, I'd never heard that the staff was sapphire - I was under the impression that it was the same one he had when he encountered the burning bush, and was a simple shepherd's staff. (Also, didn't Aaron's staff bloom with almond blossoms? Was his staff made from a different material?)

It was the same staff. And no, it wasn’t ever simple.

The staff was created at dusk in the moment between the end of Friday and the beginning of Saturday on the first week. It was given to Adam.

At some point it got to Yisro, who shoved it deep into the ground in front of his home. The staff would belong to whoever pulled it out. Which no one did until Moshe showed up...

The staff was inscribed with the Hebrew phrase: D’Tzach Adash B’Achav. Those letters are the first letters of each of the twelve plagues in the original Hebrew.

Never could understand why all the movies show a boring, wooden staff. The Sapphire one is much cooler! And has an awesome history! And would make such an incredible visual effect!

Yes, Aaron’s staff was a normal one until it started blooming, as far as I know anyway. It grew almonds because it was made of almond wood, I believe.

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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Just now, Kingsdaughter613 said:

It was the same staff. And no, it wasn’t ever simple.

The staff was created at dusk in the moment between the end of Friday and the beginning of Saturday on the first week. It was given to Adam.

At some point it got to Yisro, who shoved it deep into the ground in front of his home. The staff would belong to whoever pulled it out. Which no one did until Moshe showed up...

The staff was inscribed with the Hebrew phrase: D’Tzach Adash B’Achav. Those letters are the first letters of each of the twelve plagues in the original Hebrew.

Never could understand why all the movies show a boring, wooden staff. The Sapphire one is much cooler! And has an awesome history! And would make such an incredible visual effect!

Hmmm ... the thing is that isn't mentioned in the Torah that I am aware of, nor by the Prophets or Writings. Is that from the Talmud, or another source?

Also, it feels like that story takes away from one of the central themes of Moshe's encounter with the Angel of the LORD - that Moshe has been appointed to this and given power by the LORD not because of anything special about him, but because this is what the LORD has chosen him for - the power of the staff was power given to Moshe by the LORD, and later Aaron does the same with his staff at Moshe's command. Not that I am saying the staff wasn't sapphire, only that I haven't encountered that story before.

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Just now, Ixthos said:

Hmmm ... the thing is that isn't mentioned in the Torah that I am aware of, nor by the Prophets or Writings. Is that from the Talmud, or another source?

Also, it feels like that story takes away from one of the central themes of Moshe's encounter with the Angel of the LORD - that Moshe has been appointed to this and given power by the LORD not because of anything special about him, but because this is what the LORD has chosen him for - the power of the staff was power given to Moshe by the LORD, and later Aaron does the same with his staff at Moshe's command. Not that I am saying the staff wasn't sapphire, only that I haven't encountered that story before.

Either Mishnah or the Zohar.

And Moshe didn’t meet with an angel. Moshe spoke to God ‘Panim el panim’ - face to face. From the burning bush on. No intermediaries. That’s why Moshe is THE prophet. Only he got to speak with God directly.

And the Staff had multiple owners; Moshe wasn’t special in owning it. It previously belonged to Yisro. It was a holy object, but it had no inherent abilities as far as I know. The miracles happened because God wanted them to. The Staff didn’t cause them. Any staff could have been used - Moshe’s just happened to look really cool and have an amazing history.

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Just now, Kingsdaughter613 said:

Either Mishnah or the Zohar.

And Moshe didn’t meet with an angel. Moshe spoke to God ‘Panim el panim’ - face to face. From the burning bush on. No intermediaries. That’s why Moshe is THE prophet. Only he got to speak with God directly.

And the Staff had multiple owners; Moshe wasn’t special in owning it. It previously belonged to Yisro. It was a holy object, but it had no inherent abilities as far as I know. The miracles happened because God wanted them to. The Staff didn’t cause them. Any staff could have been used - Moshe’s just happened to look really cool and have an amazing history.

Ahhh, key point is the Angel of the LORD ISN'T an angel. Its a bit complicated, but the Angel of the LORD is multiple times in the text identified with the LORD - i.e. the Angel of the LORD is when the LORD appears on Earth.

I haven't heard of Yisro before, or at least I don't think I have heard of him. That is an interesting idea though - is anything said of what happened to it afterwards?

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11 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

Ahhh, key point is the Angel of the LORD ISN'T an angel. Its a bit complicated, but the Angel of the LORD is multiple times in the text identified with the LORD - i.e. the Angel of the LORD is when the LORD appears on Earth.

I haven't heard of Yisro before, or at least I don't think I have heard of him. That is an interesting idea though - is anything said of what happened to it afterwards?

Yeah... no. Angels are angels and are clearly identified as such. God is God and the word ‘Adon’ Lord doesn’t appear in the Hebrew very often - and when it does it’s pretty clear who is being referenced. 

I assume you’ve read the Hebrew, as obviously anything translated from Hebrew to Greek to Latin to English is going to have significant errors. That’s why the priests in the Vatican study the Old Testament in Hebrew, like every good Orthodox Jewish school kid.  How else would you learn it? And I mean that seriously.

Yisro is Moshe’s father-in-law. Father of Tzipporah, ancestor of the Druze, man who created the Jewish legal system which led directly to the modern American one, has an entire parshah named for him - the one where we got the Torah, Pharoah’s former advisor who fled because he disagreed with the ‘enslave all the Jews plan?’ That guy? His name doesn’t start with a Gimmel-dagesh - it starts with a Yud and I’m not German.

Yes. The Staff was kept in the first Temple and was used there on occasion. It vanished with the destruction; possibly earlier when Chizkiyahu hid the Aron.

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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1 minute ago, Kingsdaughter613 said:

Yeah... no. Angels are angels and are clearly identified as such. God is God and the word ‘Adon’ Lord doesn’t appear in the Hebrew very often - and when it does it’s pretty clear who is being referenced. 

I assume you’ve read the Hebrew, as obviously anything translated from Hebrew to Greek to Latin to English is going to have significant errors. That’s why the priests in the Vatican study the Old Testament in Hebrew, like every good Orthodox Jewish school kid.  How else would you learn it?

I am learning Hebrew, albeit modern Hebrew. However, if you have the Torah infront of you, please read to me Exodus 3:2, and tell me what it says?

 

2 minutes ago, Kingsdaughter613 said:

Yisro is Moshe’s father-in-law. Father of Tzipporah, ancestor of the Druze, man who created the Jewish legal system which led directly to the modern American one, has an entire parshah named for him - the one where we got the Torah, Pharoah’s former advisor who fled because he disagreed with the ‘enslave all the Jews plan?’ That guy? His name doesn’t start with a Gimmel-dagesh - it starts with a Yud and I’m not German.

Yes. The Staff was kept in the first Temple and was used there on occasion. It vanished with the destruction; possibly earlier when Chizkiyahu hid the Aron.

Ahhh! Yes, I do know that name, albeit the anglicised Jethro.

That is interesting the staff was used in the temple, though in what capacity? Was it put in the Ark like Aaron's staff was?

There are so many things from the past lost. Still, we must remember that, however special items were, the LORD lives and they were mere reflections of His power and promises, and that power and those promises remain.

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14 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

I am learning Hebrew, albeit modern Hebrew. However, if you have the Torah infront of you, please read to me Exodus 3:2, and tell me what it says?

 

Ahhh! Yes, I do know that name, albeit the anglicised Jethro.

That is interesting the staff was used in the temple, though in what capacity? Was it put in the Ark like Aaron's staff was?

There are so many things from the past lost. Still, we must remember that, however special items were, the LORD lives and they were mere reflections of His power and promises, and that power and those promises remain.

Found it. You’re right that he sees an angel in the Bush, but I’m right that it’s God who spoke, as seen in verse four:

וַ֠יֵּרָא מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה אֵלָ֛יו בְּלַבַּת־אֵ֖שׁ מִתּ֣וֹךְ הַסְּנֶ֑ה וַיַּ֗רְא וְהִנֵּ֤ה הַסְּנֶה֙ בֹּעֵ֣ר בָּאֵ֔שׁ וְהַסְּנֶ֖ה אֵינֶ֥נּוּ אֻכָּֽל׃ 

וַיֹּ֣אמֶר מֹשֶׁ֔ה אָסֻֽרָה־נָּ֣א וְאֶרְאֶ֔ה אֶת־הַמַּרְאֶ֥ה הַגָּדֹ֖ל הַזֶּ֑ה מַדּ֖וּעַ לֹא־יִבְעַ֥ר הַסְּנֶֽה׃ 

וַיַּ֥רְא יְהוָ֖ה כִּ֣י סָ֣ר לִרְא֑וֹת וַיִּקְרָא֩ אֵלָ֨יו אֱלֹהִ֜ים מִתּ֣וֹךְ הַסְּנֶ֗ה וַיֹּ֛אמֶר מֹשֶׁ֥ה מֹשֶׁ֖ה וַיֹּ֥אמֶר הִנֵּֽנִי׃

As you can see, in verse four it’s God talking from the Bush. When it’s an angel it’s specified, as in 2. Moshe always talked directly to God, including at the Bush. The angel was just to get Moshe’s attention.

None of those words means Lord by the way. One has no translation and one basically translates to God.

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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On 1/15/2021 at 11:30 PM, Ixthos said:

The problem is Brandon has steered very close to this already. Many times the Shards or tLR refer to themselves as God with a capitol G, Kelsier before his sacrifice deliberately paralleled certain traits of Yeshua, Jesus, and on Roshar one of the Fused also uses part of the Hebrew name for God, El, along with Adonalsium's name being a reference to the name used to prevent someone from actually saying God's Name. Brandon is a Mormon, and while I don't know every nuance of Mormon theology I do know that they have several key differences from most other Christian beliefs, such as believing God was once a man before becoming God, and while I could be mistaken I don't think they mean this in the sense of how Jesus took on humanity and became human (if there are any Mormons reading this could you perhaps clarify what that that phrase "as man now is etc." means?), which makes me nervous about how Brandon will approach this later.

Do you think authors should not have the freedom to have characters call themselves Gods or God? 

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Just now, Kingsdaughter613 said:

Found it. You’re right that he sees an angel in the Bush, but I’m right that it’s God who spoke, as seen in verse four:

וַ֠יֵּרָא מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה אֵלָ֛יו בְּלַבַּת־אֵ֖שׁ מִתּ֣וֹךְ הַסְּנֶ֑ה וַיַּ֗רְא וְהִנֵּ֤ה הַסְּנֶה֙ בֹּעֵ֣ר בָּאֵ֔שׁ וְהַסְּנֶ֖ה אֵינֶ֥נּוּ אֻכָּֽל׃ 

וַיֹּ֣אמֶר מֹשֶׁ֔ה אָסֻֽרָה־נָּ֣א וְאֶרְאֶ֔ה אֶת־הַמַּרְאֶ֥ה הַגָּדֹ֖ל הַזֶּ֑ה מַדּ֖וּעַ לֹא־יִבְעַ֥ר הַסְּנֶֽה׃ 

וַיַּ֥רְא יְהוָ֖ה כִּ֣י סָ֣ר לִרְא֑וֹת וַיִּקְרָא֩ אֵלָ֨יו אֱלֹהִ֜ים מִתּ֣וֹךְ הַסְּנֶ֗ה וַיֹּ֛אמֶר מֹשֶׁ֥ה מֹשֶׁ֖ה וַיֹּ֥אמֶר הִנֵּֽנִי׃

As you can see, in verse four it’s God talking from the Bush. When it’s an angel it’s specified, as in 2. Moshe always talked directly to God, including at the Bush.

That is an interesting take - though are you saying the angel was in the bush the whole time doing nothing? The text seems to be clear that the angel was in the bush, and yet the LORD has in the bush speaking to Moshe - that is, only one person went into the bush, and that same person then spoke from the bush.

Another question then is what was the pillar of fire by night and cloud by day that lead the Israelites out of Egypt? Was it the LORD or an angel?

 

(Actually, here is a list of examples: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angel_of_the_Lord) Either way you do agree it could be interpreted as saying the Angel of the LORD was the one who entered and who spoke, as it doesn't say the LORD entered the bush yet it does say the LORD spoke from the bush. i.e. what was the Angel doing there?

 

Just now, Aspiring Writer said:

Do you think authors should not have the freedom to have characters call themselves Gods or God? 

Depends - do you think there is a problem with authors inserting references to real people in their stories? I did elaborate later, but it is something that bothers me, much like how an author talking about real people can potentially be offensive.

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I am an atheist.. so, I guess my perspective would be helpful, or atleast share a different viewpoint.. ( I would try my best not to offend anyone and if I yet ended up doing, I accept my faults)

Does evolution exist? If no, then everything is god made. 

If yes, then how did human evolve? From other organisms? Is religion man made? Is the concept of God man-made? This is probably too radical a view point to take in this discussion but we have to start here. 

Now, please see for yourself. In Brandon's universe, God exists. And, we know that this god (Adonalsium) created this universe. Now, look where he is taking this universe. This god was broken into 16 pieces. 

How can you break a god into 16 pieces? Which human religion allows that to happen? Isn't that heretic in itself? Breaking god?

Broken parts were taken by human beings. So, human b came gods. Multiple god's. Isn't that heretic from a point of view of many religions of Earth which profess the existence of a single god? 

Now, there exist beings like Hoid, who by virtue of something, have become virtually immortal. Hoid is atleast as old as the 16 new god's. So, what should he be considered? Another god by the definitions we create for our world?

What I am trying to say is, by creating this imaginary world and exploring the god, while being human is totally a theoretical exploration. The way it has been done is heretic in every sense of religions that exist in our world. 

So, should we impose our world religion in an author's imaginary world and ask him to not do somethings?

Sometimes, I question the meaning of open minded. I question the meaning of debate. Isn't the whole meaning of debate or a discussion is to understand and experience those that is uncomfortable and goes against our views?

Isn't it that opposition makes our beliefs stronger, and not weaker?

Because, suppose Brandon is taking Renarin to the conclusion of being an everything. That is his take, in his imaginary world. There are so many logical steps that he would have to explain religiously to even attempt that, that an attempt in itself would be a thing of wonder. Even if it fails spectacularly, atleast he would have asked everyone to think this way. 

What I actually think will happen? Renarin is not going to be the be all, end all of Brandon's universe. Because, thematically, it is too similar to what he has already done with Sazed.

Edited by Pandora's shard
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3 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

do you think there is a problem with authors inserting references to real people in their stories?

Depends on the references and how they are executed. However, God is more of a concept than a person. If someone references Trump in their story, that is a person with a history you can look up and try to figure out, a person with clear beliefs, behaviors, etc.. When someone says God, you don't know which God they are referring to, or likely using the word as more of a title and descriptor, like someone naming themselves Ruler or Creator or the Almighty, or they may just end up making up a new God for their purposes, which has been done in literature in many ways over many centuries, even when those religions were being worshipped. So I don't think it's an exact correlation.

But saying that using God is offensive is somewhat like a nation that had several Emporers say you can no longer use the word Emporer because of the significance they have to their culture. They had several Emporers, and just because they gave a character the title of Emporer doesn't mean it's a commentary on any of their Emporers. If they had an Emporer named Emporer Liu and then you name a character Emporer Liu, then I would say there is reason to be concerned, as that can be seen as a commentary to an Emporer they may hold in very high regard and don't want you touching. And so I would say the same in this situation, where you are gatekeeping a term that is very non-specific and doesn't refer to anything too particular. If Sanderson started having a character call themselves the High and Exalted One, then that I would agree would be cause for concern as that is more specific, or El Shaddai. Those are not general and can be interpreted as a commentary on their god. You see my point?

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8 minutes ago, Pandora's shard said:

I am an atheist.. so, I guess my perspective would be helpful, or atleast share a different viewpoint.. ( I would try my best not to offend anyone and if I yet ended up doing, I accept my faults)

Does evolution exist? If no, then everything is god made. 

If yes, then how did human evolve? From other organisms? Is religion man made? Is the concept of God man-made? This is probably too radical a view point to take in this discussion but we have to start here. 

Now, please see for yourself. In Brandon's universe, God exists. And, we know that this god (Adonalsium) created this universe. Now, look where he is taking this universe. This god was broken into 16 pieces. 

How can you break a god into 16 pieces? Which human religion allows that to happen? Isn't that heretic in itself? Breaking god?

Broken parts were taken by human beings. So, human b came gods. Multiple god's. Isn't that heretic from a point of view of many religions of Earth which profess the existence of a single god? 

Now, there exist beings like Hoid, who by virtue of something, have become virtually immortal. Hoid is atleast as old as the 16 new god's. So, what should he be considered? Another god by the definitions we create for our world?

What I am trying to say is, by creating this imaginary world and exploring the god, while being human is totally a theoretical exploration. The way it has been done is heretic in every sense of religions that exist in our world. 

So, should we impose our world religion in an author's imaginary world and ask him to not do somethings?

Sometimes, I question the meaning of open minded. I question the meaning of debate. Isn't the whole meaning of debate or a discussion is to understand and experience those that is uncomfortable and goes against our views?

Isn't it that opposition makes our beliefs stronger, and not weaker?

Because, suppose Brandon is taking Renarin to the conclusion of being an everything. That is his take, in his imaginary world. There are so many logical steps that he would have to explain religiously to even attempt that, that an attempt in itself would be a thing of wonder. Even if it fails spectacularly, atleast he would have asked everyone to think this way. 

What I actually think will happen? Renarin is not going to be the be all, end all of Brandon's universe. Because, thematically, it is too similar to what he has already done with Sazed.

Indeed it is helpful :-)

If God doesn't exist, if religion is entirely man made and devoid of truth, if all we have been told is fairytale and myth, then the only problem with how Brandon approaches his writing is how it would make those of us who are religious feel.

If God does exist then Brandon is potentially putting himself at risk if he does certain things in his writing, which he so far hasn't seemed to have done from my perspective. Some of what Brandon has written has made me nervous and uncomfortable, but that isn't the same thing, as that is mainly because it seems to hint at other things that might happen, which I hope doesn't happen.

I have no problem with him exploring religions and religious ideas in his writing, indeed I find it interesting and well done. And I understand a lot of what Brandon has done and why he has done certain things, including the capitalised G for some characters, even though I don't like it. The issue is if he continues further down that.

(Again, consider Michael Crichton. He was free to up whatever characters he wanted in his story. So was their any problems with him writing a character as a brief cameo who happened to be a vile human being, and shared a name and profession with a critic who disliked his books? I am not saying Brandon is going to do this, only that the possibility of something similar bothers me, and his own actions might be a danger to Brandon himself, again like a man walking a tight rope, as he will have to give an account to God about it.)

There are religions which have mortal divinities, and gods split into pieces. Some even where gods accidentally make the world, get tricked, and elevate mortals to be gods also. I don't have a problem with Brandon writing that, and find it interesting. The issue becomes if a very specific name for a very specific God is used or implied, as that is sacred. If God doesn't exist, then it only is a problem in as much as it upsets myself and others who see that name as Holy. If God does exist then Brandon is walking on a tight rope. It doesn't matter how an author is exploring an idea if it also happens to be the equivalent of playing Russian Roulette and putting five bullets in the chamber. Again, if God doesn't exist then the only problem is how it makes some Christians feel - as was noted earlier this is like representation of minorities and marginalised groups, as sometimes a bad portrayal can be more damaging than no portrayal, you don't want to offend anyone even if all that happens is you make some people upset. But if God does exist then Brandon would have to give an account of this, if done, to the LORD.

Brandon is free to explore the idea of divinity and deity, and what worship is and makes people do. He is free to put anything he wants in his stories. It likely is he won't do this, but I can't say with certainty he won't, and it does bother me. Nevertheless Brandon can do what he wants with the books

 

Also, I'm fairly certain Stormlight is going to end with the shards changing hands, so there isn't much way around similarities to Sazed - after all, Taravangian has also taken up a shard already.

 

6 minutes ago, Aspiring Writer said:

Depends on the references and how they are executed. However, God is more of a concept than a person. If someone references Trump in their story, that is a person with a history you can look up and try to figure out, a person with clear beliefs, behaviors, etc.. When someone says God, you don't know which God they are referring to, or likely using the word as more of a title and descriptor, like someone naming themselves Ruler or Creator or the Almighty, or they may just end up making up a new God for their purposes, which has been done in literature in many ways over many centuries, even when those religions were being worshipped. So I don't think it's an exact correlation.

But saying that using God is offensive is somewhat like a nation that had several Emporers say you can no longer use the word Emporer because of the significance they have to their culture. They had several Emporers, and just because they gave a character the title of Emporer doesn't mean it's a commentary on any of their Emporers. If they had an Emporer named Emporer Liu and then you name a character Emporer Liu, then I would say there is reason to be concerned, as that can be seen as a commentary to an Emporer they may hold in very high regard and don't want you touching. And so I would say the same in this situation, where you are gatekeeping a term that is very non-specific and doesn't refer to anything too particular. If Sanderson started having a character call themselves the High and Exalted One, then that I would agree would be cause for concern as that is more specific, or El Shaddai. Those are not general and can be interpreted as a commentary on their god. You see my point?

Let's not bring politics into this please :-P

I am not saying Brandon can't use capitol G God in his stories, or that it doesn't make sense, only that when he does so it makes me nervous about possible future things he might do, as Renarin's name immediately made me worry. Capitol G God has a very specific connotation in Western culture, which is why people who believe in multiple gods often use lower case g to distinguish between the supreme God and other gods. Again, I understand why Brandon uses it, and god is a broadly used term, I do agree. It is just an example of another thing added on top of a list of things that make me nervous. The term is often used as a title, but in a certain context it gains another meaning - like in your Emperor example if there was someone commonly known to the population as "The Emperor", and usually when talking about emperors they used a lowercase e, and someone then refers to "The Emperor", it brings to mind that specific person, while "emperor" wouldn't. I'm not saying Brandon has done anything wrong, I am saying it is another thing which makes me worry he might go a little further (i.e. most Christians I know wouldn't refer to a fictional Character as "God" in the narration itself, though they might have characters talk to one another and call a character that. It doesn't mean Brandon will go further, only that I'm hoping he doesn't.

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2 minutes ago, Ixthos said:

Indeed it is helpful :-)

If God doesn't exist, if religion is entirely man made and devoid of truth, if all we have been told is fairytale and myth, then the only problem with how Brandon approaches his writing is how it would make those of us who are religious feel.

If God does exist then Brandon is potentially putting himself at risk if he does certain things in his writing, which he so far hasn't seemed to have done from my perspective. Some of what Brandon has written has made me nervous and uncomfortable, but that isn't the same thing, as that is mainly because it seems to hint at other things that might happen, which I hope doesn't happen.

I have no problem with him exploring religions and religious ideas in his writing, indeed I find it interesting and well done. And I understand a lot of what Brandon has done and why he has done certain things, including the capitalised G for some characters, even though I don't like it. The issue is if he continues further down that.

(Again, consider Michael Crichton. He was free to up whatever characters he wanted in his story. So was their any problems with him writing a character as a brief cameo who happened to be a vile human being, and shared a name and profession with a critic who disliked his books? I am not saying Brandon is going to do this, only that the possibility of something similar bothers me, and his own actions might be a danger to Brandon himself, again like a man walking a tight rope, as he will have to give an account to God about it.)

There are religions which have mortal divinities, and gods split into pieces. Some even where gods accidentally make the world, get tricked, and elevate mortals to be gods also. I don't have a problem with Brandon writing that, and find it interesting. The issue becomes if a very specific name for a very specific God is used or implied, as that is sacred. If God doesn't exist, then it only is a problem in as much as it upsets myself and others who see that name as Holy. If God does exist then Brandon is walking on a tight rope. It doesn't matter how an author is exploring an idea if it also happens to be the equivalent of playing Russian Roulette and putting five bullets in the chamber. Again, if God doesn't exist then the only problem is how it makes some Christians feel - as was noted earlier this is like representation of minorities and marginalised groups, as sometimes a bad portrayal can be more damaging than no portrayal, you don't want to offend anyone even if all that happens is you make some people upset. But if God does exist then Brandon would have to give an account of this, if done, to the LORD.

Brandon is free to explore the idea of divinity and deity, and what worship is and makes people do. He is free to put anything he wants in his stories. It likely is he won't do this, but I can't say with certainty he won't, and it does bother me. Nevertheless Brandon can do what he wants with the books

 

Also, I'm fairly certain Stormlight is going to end with the shards changing hands, so there isn't much way around similarities to Sazed - after all, Taravangian has also taken up a shard already.

 

Let's not bring politics into this please :-P

I am not saying Brandon can't use capitol G God in his stories, or that it doesn't make sense, only that when he does so it makes me nervous about possible future things he might do, as Renarin's name immediately made me worry. Capitol G God has a very specific connotation in Western culture, which is why people who believe in multiple gods often use lower case g to distinguish between the supreme God and other gods. Again, I understand why Brandon uses it, and god is a broadly used term, I do agree. It is just an example of another thing added on top of a list of things that make me nervous. The term is often used as a title, but in a certain context it gains another meaning - like in your Emperor example if there was someone commonly known to the population as "The Emperor", and usually when talking about emperors they used a lowercase e, and someone then refers to "The Emperor", it brings to mind that specific person, while "emperor" wouldn't. I'm not saying Brandon has done anything wrong, I am saying it is another thing which makes me worry he might go a little further (i.e. most Christians I know wouldn't refer to a fictional Character as "God" in the narration itself, though they might have characters talk to one another and call a character that. It doesn't mean Brandon will go further, only that I'm hoping he doesn't.

I technically didn't. He's a public figure that you can do a lot of research on, so he is a good example when compared to someone named John Carton that you'd be lucky to find the Linkedin account of.

Okay, so we agree on that. So what exactly are you afraid Brandon will do and think he shouldn't, and why shouldn't he?

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