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Why Is Everyone Wrong About Their Feelings?

Child of Hodor

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I've noticed a pattern of people on Roshar saying they no longer have feelings and then they break down crying or raging in anger like 10 seconds later.

Lift accuses Nale of not feeling anything in Edgedancer and he agrees talking about how Honor has finally "suffused" him. Later in the same scene he breaks down crying and hugs Lift. 

Amaram brags about not hurting anymore and immediately proves that to be false by flipping out at Kaladin for asking him why he still hurts. No hugs or crying, Rock just shoots him with arrows. Jasnah is even praised by Ivory as being spren-like and emotionless which she takes offense to and obviously isn't true. 

Even Odium is wrong about it with Dalinar. "The pain has passed" he tells him in Oathbringer climax. He's totally covinced he's taken his pain and won Dalinar over as his champion. He walks away and starts talking to the Fused and Amaram. Then Dalinar is ugly-cry-screaming "You cannot have my pain!" 30 seconds later. 

This is how feelings work in real life, they are sort of a renewable resource as long as we're alive and can remember emotional things that happened to us in the past. But why are so many people, cognitive shadows, and spren convinced it works differently in Stormlight? It's an overarching theme, how people cope with trauma, but why do they take it so literally? 

I get that giving your pain to Odium is a Faustian bargain that isn't worth it, so it not really working for someone like Amaram isn't a surprise. But it can't work on Dalinar for even 30 seconds, Odium? You said the pain passed? How are you so bad at this? I know *whispers* despite what you tell yourself you're not actually "emotion incarnate", /*whispers* but come on! 

It seems that Odium isn't a god who understands pain after all B) 

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I think Odium is not realy "taking" pain. Only real forgivness can do this, and this concept is as far from his Intent as can be. Odium can only "bury" pain under hatred, redirect it to passion. Similar to Star Wars Sith technique, when they fuel hatered with pain. But, unlike Sith, Odium realy gives short-therm pain reduction, soothing emotions.

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Just finished my Edgedancer reread last night, so I can answer towards Nale at least!  He was saying that he no longer feels guilt.  He's happy he doesn't feel it anymore, because being guilty while "following a code with precision is wasted emotion."  Lift asks him some emotions that he feels that aren't wasted, and he stops for a moment to consider the thought, and then Lift continues being Lift and it's not addressed again.

As for Odium's whole "taking your pain" shtick, I think that what he's doing is a lot more on par with Rioters and Soothers on Scadrial than anything.  Bump up some emotions, tamp down others, so the end result is them feeling how you want but it's a super-delicate balance to maintain (especially if you're not a Mistborn and capable of doing both).  Like sure, it's literally magic, but it's not free.  So when Odium is wrong about something, it's because he thought he had ramped up/down the necessary emotions, but because he's a giant Shardic god it's hard for him to look at a single person so narrowly and actually get it completely right.  And most of the time, getting it like 90% right is easily good enough. 

Add to it that Dalinar has a layer of obfuscation provided to him by Cultivation specifically to prevent that very moment, and it's no wonder that Odium failed.  The scary thing is how close he came to succeeding regardless.

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The way I see it, Odium isn't actually taking pain, he's providing a way to shift blame, if that makes sense.  To use Dalinar as an example, Odium tells him that everything that happened was Odium's doing, or the Thrill, but whatever it was, it wasn't Dalinar's fault, trying to create a sort of emotional distance from the events that, for lack of a better term, would create emotional calluses.  Now if Dalinar had agreed to let Odium take his pain, it's essentially blame shifting, and as I see it, leads to mindless following, 'it's not my fault, I'm just following orders', that kind of thing.

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