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Could Slivers have more Bonds?


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I remember that once you give up the power of a Shard, you become a Sliver and your soul is expanded.

So would this mean you could handle more Bonds, or maybe attract more Spren to you?

I read a few WOB's and one of them said that it was technically possible for multiple Spren to Bond with a human, though they wouldn't like it.

Perhaps because the average soul can only properly support a single Nahel Bond and it would be difficult for two Bonds to advance to any meaningful degree, thus leaving the Spren unable to gain more sapience.

And perhaps a Sliver could properly support more Bonds, thus preventing their spiritweb from getting clogged up by the number of deep spiritual Bonds.


And yeah I know that it's also because of potentially conflicting Oaths but not all of them are going to conflict, I'd think that one could easily uphold the Oaths of both a Windrunner and a Willshaper with minimal difficulty. 

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The description of Slivers is that they were expanded when they took up the shard (or a large chunk of it) and then Deflated after, leaving their spirited stretched and warped "like a deflated balloon".  It's basically Savantism but to the entire Spiritweb rather than a single skewed Power.  

It's technically possible to bond multiple spren in the same way it's technically possible to have meaningful Polyamorous relationship: they are possible but are difficult, complicated, and require several people with with a less-than-common cultural outlook to find each other.  And when (as is the case with Spren Bonds) you have wildly different fundamental Philosophies to rigidly adhere to (which may be incompatible) makes it even more difficult.  Imagine having three (consenting) spouses that were each very old-school Orthodox religious, one for each of the three main Abrahamic Religions.  Could you live you're life adhering to the strict/orthodox requirements of old-school Islam, Judaism, and Christianity all at once? There's a lot of overlap and academically they share common roots and shouldn't be incompatible, but in reality they have diverging interpretations of a lot of stuff.  If there is so much debate over what is and is not Kosher, how difficult must it be to stay within the rails of both Kosher and Halal, as an example?  Now throw Buddhism or some other religion without the common roots, and it could get even more tangled.  I imagine Bonding multiple and Swearing the Oaths would be tough and vary depending on the Order.  Truths are probably the most compatible since they could be personalized to jive with another order's theme.  Ditto Skybreaker Oaths and Crusades, they can be just about anything so long as they are external, and a skybreaker that swears to another Order (like a Bondsmith) is likely to adopt more of that Orders outlook on the Ideals.  Past those though, the Oaths start to set specific priorities that might not always be compatible, or at least require a lot of mental Gymnastics to reconcile (to all involved Spren's satisfaction, not just the Radiant's own).  


On the topic of Bonds, the only instance I can think of where Bonds are exclusive to each other is in the case of Feruchemcial Medallions where they struggle to grant more than two or three different metals at once (but can do it with the Bands).  Somebody's old (but well reasoned) theory on those was the Connections were somewhat limited for the same reason and by the same mechanism that Mistborn and Feruchemists get One or All the powers but not random mixed bags of them.  But at least in the case of Rosharan Bonds we've been told in WOB that you can Bond multiple Spren, we've seen folks bond multiple shardblades, and WOB says you could totally bond all (or at least half) the Honorblades to get access to all Surges (and wouldnt even need to be actively holding them all). 


Edited by Quantus
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Another big reason that its hard to bond multiple spren is just attracting the spren in the first place. Having a spren want to form a bond with you is a very random opportunity. For example with Hoid we can see that we never found a Cryptic in all the time that he has been on Roshar and how he has to track one down so that he can bond it. So if the likelihood of bonding one spren is slim, than the chances of attracting two spren is extremely low.

Sure splinters might be able to handle multiple spren bonds easier, but it would be insanely unlikely.

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6 hours ago, Quantus said:

in the same way it's technically possible to have meaningful Polyamorous relationship

i very much disagree with this comparison, I know a bunch of people that are happy in nonmonogamous relationships it's really not a particularly extreme thing, but the overall point you're making is still true.

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On 9/9/2022 at 5:43 PM, Stormtide_Leviathan said:

i very much disagree with this comparison, I know a bunch of people that are happy in nonmonogamous relationships it's really not a particularly extreme thing, but the overall point you're making is still true.

"Extreme" is definitely not the impression I was trying to make, sorry. I was just trying to say I dont think it's a matter of anything fundamental about Bonds or the magic or Cosmere, just the choices and cultural hang-ups of the individuals involved. 

I do think that statistics say it's difficult to balance a life-long, marriage-level relationship between just two people, with modern divorce rates being what they are (in my country at least), so I imagine three people is at least as complicated and likely to be at least 1/3rd more.  And that's likely to be among relatively similar people, not three very distinct (and often xenophobic) species and cultures of Roshar. I think we all agree that Bonding two of the same type of Spren is going to be more straightforward to balance (both Oaths and Personalities) as compared to bonding two type of Spren and joining two different Orders.  

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