Nameless

Deadeyes and Sja-Anat

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I was listening to RoW again and I got to the Sja-Anat chapter in the first set of interludes, and in it the enlightened mistspren says:

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Thank you, Mother. he said. Thank you for my eyes. (RoW I-2, P. 287)

Is it just me, or is this a dead giveaway that Sja-Anat can heal deadeyes by corrupting them? I mean, the mistspren could be speaking figuratively about Sja-Anat giving him a new viewpoint, but that is a bit of a stretch.

Edited by Nameless
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I had not thought of that and I like the implication. Once BAM was imprisoned it's mentioned they started occurring and maybe Sja-Anat is taking some of that connection?  

I interpreted it as eyes to see the future, similar to what Glys has been granted. 

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Just now, Shinwarrior said:

I interpreted it as eyes to see the future, similar to what Glys has been granted. 

That could be the case, but I'm pretty sure that the bond is what grants futuresight.

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42 minutes ago, Nameless said:

That could be the case, but I'm pretty sure that the bond is what grants futuresight.

You're probably right. Brandonson doesn't make things too convoluted and a dead eyes receiving their eyes back seems very straightforward. (So much so that most of us (myself included missed that).  

Edited by Shinwarrior
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I think that's very likely. A couple perhaps relevant WoBs:

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Jack Kimbell

Could Sja-anat heal a deadeye by changing them?

Brandon Sanderson

Heal? That's going to depend on your definition of heal. But, there are definitely some that would call what would occur healing. They would be different from the way they had been before.

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Oversleep

Will there be Enlightened spren of other Radiant Orders than Truthwatchers, and why does Sja-anat like Truthwatchers so much?

Brandon Sanderson

The reason Sja-anat likes Truthwatcher spren the most is because they are the most willing. And she considers what she's doing offering Enlightenment, not corrupting. And she considers their willingness to be a part of this. Outside observers might consider her methods less... involving less volition on the parts of some of the spren that she touches. They might argue with her on that point. In this case, as it comes with the two Truthwatcher spren that you see in the books, they both went to what they are willingly. Fully willingly to become what they are. They are, you might say, participants in her plans. So that's why she wants them.

That + the fact she supposedly couldn't Enlighten true spren when the old Radiants were around makes me think the "secret" is probably that she can only Enlighten them when they're deadeyes most of the time (whether because of Investiture requirements or whatever else).

Edited by LewsTherinTelescope
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1 minute ago, LewsTherinTelescope said:

That + the fact she supposedly couldn't Enlighten true spren when the old Radiants were around makes me think the "secret" is probably that she can only Enlighten them when they're deadeyes most of the time (whether because of Investiture requirements or whatever else).

Yeah, especially with how Brandon says that some people might consider her methods "involving less volition". Like taking advantage of a deadeye's injured mind?

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Interesting idea!  I also interpreted that quote figuratively, i.e., meaning that Sja-Anat granting "enlightenment" allows them to see things they could not before... but it very well might be a reference to a change in the deadeye state.

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I totally love this idea, and I could definitely see this happening.

Ba ado caused deadeyes and jha anat can heal them.

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I love this idea! Thinking about it this way made me want to read through some parts with Renarin and Glys, to see if there was anything that might change with this interpretation in mind. 

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Renarin Kholin knew he wasn't actually a Knight Radiant. Glys had once been a different kind of spren, but something had changed him, corrupted him. Glys didn't remember that very well; it had happened before they had formed their bond. 

Now, neither knew what they'd become.

OB Chapter 117: Champion with Nine Shadows

"Glys isn't convinced the visions are bad. He says we're something new, and he doesn't think the visions are specifically from Odium--though perhaps his desires taint what we see."

RoW Chapter 54: The Future Become Dust

The first passage reminds me of Syl forgetting that she was an honorspren when she first bonded Kaladin, and then later, as his oaths progressed, remembering the details of her past. If Glys is a former deadeye, his assertion that they are something new carries a different connotation for sure--he could be speaking as a spren who has experienced a traditional bond in the past, before the Recreance. I also wonder if the scene in OB where they first encounter Re-Shephir, where Glys is terrified and refuses to speak might be indicative then of his remembering her, in some manner, from before?

Here's another odd little thought, stemming from this passage: 

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They had managed to recruit several standard Truthwatchers--and they could create illusions like Shallan. Renarin couldn't do that. He could only summon lights, and they did strange, unnatural things sometimes....

RoW Chapter 6: A Loose Thread

In the Ars Arcanum at the end of the book, it's theorized that to Lightweave, the Surgebinder needs not just a mental picture of the intended illusion, but "some level of Connection to it as well." So if Sja-Anat's touch is creating something new, I wonder if it's possibly that she's replacing the part of Renarin's powers that would ordinarily be expressed through the channels typical of Honor--in this case, the way a Truthwatcher or Lightweaver would possibly Connect to the idea of an illusion is unavailable to him because the Shard facilitating Surgebinding is now Odium. Renarin theorizes himself that he sees like Odium does, "not events, or the world itself, but possibilities." His use of Progression, though, might be more similar to other Surgebinders' then, because Cultivation's contribution would be left in place. The idea that the Enlightened spren are former deadeyes is just really intriguing to me! 

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This is a very intriguing idea! I had also interpreted the "thank you for my eyes" bit as being metaphorical, but the idea of Sja-anat only corrupting higher spren if they're willing but it not looking that way to outsiders because they're deadeyes is bringing me around.

I may have found some additional support for this theory:

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Of the Unmade, Sja-anat was most feared by the Radiants. They spoke extensively of her ability to corrupt spren, though only "lesser" spren—whatever that means. —From Hessi’s Mythica, page 89

OB Chapter 97 Epigraph

Now, assuming this is accurate, that means that the ancient Radiants never had any encounters with corrupted Radiant spren like Glys. And in RoW, Shallan learns from Kalak that radiant spren didn't become deadeyes prior to the imprisonment of Ba-Ado-Mishram. If the Radiant spren that Sja-anat has been corrupting are all deadeyes, then it makes sense that there's no record of them prior to the Day of Recreance.

The one sticking point for me in all this is the corrupted Oathgate spren in OB. They're never implied to be able to form Nahel bonds, but as seen with the ones at Urithiru they are intelligent and self-aware, so they certainly don't strike me as "lesser" spren. It's possible that the Kholinar Oathgate spren were deadeyes for some reason, but I find that highly unlikely, since that seems to specifically be the result of a Radiant breaking their oaths. The remaining possibilities I can think of that would still fit within this theory are that there's something about non-deadeye Radiant spren that prevents them from being corrupted even where other intelligent spren can be, or else only corrupting 'willing' spren is a self-imposed limit on Sja-anat's part that Odium forced her to violate when corrupting the Oathgate spren (possibly supported by her saying she was "compelled" to touch them). Though, if this last possibility is the case, I'm left scratching my head over why Odium didn't force her to corrupt "greater" spren in the past. Something bigger to do with Ba-Ado-Mishram's imprisonment, maybe, which the deadeye phenomenon is only one symptom of?

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