Well I don't want to make this into a tangent, so I think we'll have to agree to disagree on this.
In any case it's not clear to me how anyone simply allowed to appeal to religious belief as a way of not doing their job and/or interfering with the jobs of others is acceptable in a society where Church and State are separated.
This is why I don't even understand how any of this Kim Davis silliness makes sense.
People can believe in anything, including the Prof Xavier religion I just made up in this thread. I don't know what is true or not in a definitive sense about the nature of reality, but I do think when it comes to government the maxim about only that which has evidence can be asserted applies.
(There's a lot of other stuff, like how we've known since Plato that no god can dictate morality, but it doesn't even matter for this.)
edit: On the subject of Natural Law, from what I've read it is basically a failure in philosophy to apply Hume's Is-Ought distinction. Even if we were to accept some kind of natural law, exactly what this entails would remain up for debate.
Funny thing is Nerdanel may have been on to something....
Just a couple of my own thoughts on some aspects of the series and some of the common theories I've seen tossed around:
I don't recall a library with a dragon, but I do recall the library opening up to a scene of the Whirlwind?
Assuming you mean Big Moe, rather than Cnauir's son aka Lil' Moe?
I agree that Big Moe showing up would damn TUC [i mean the book, not the in-world group] unless it is handled incredibly well. I do think Meppa may have been someone converted to seeing at least some things the way Big Moe saw them, though Meppa seems to have greater recollection of the Whole based on his command of the Water. (Assuming that's how it works?)
I'd agree to an extent. I think Big Moe realized his own limitations and planned to die after his meeting with Kellhus. He conditions Kellhus beyond his own death, but Kellhus doesn't see it.
I do think there is a limit to seeing the world the way the Dunyain do, in that there is something to Real that can't fit into the algorithms Kellhus utilizes. As Nerdanel once suggested, the Dunyain ultimately run Greedy Algorithms but this fucks them over in the long, long run.
Well it's not clear exactly how we should be ranking sorcerers. It sees the advantage of the Gnosis is in its purity of meaning, and that with Cleric the Nonman memory problem actually purifies his meaning to a greater degree by (if I understood the text) freeing the Nonman from the memories that occlude what we mean in the present moment.
But there is also the purity of the Cish, which Titirga seemed to have partially grasped before even Fane came around. Shae, when recollecting Titirga's power, notes the archmage "seizes would should not be seized" (paraphrase). I think this might mean Titirga can not just carve up the onta but also partially alter the very ontological status of the world, the Ground, and this is why his stain seems purer. Reality isn't perfectly aligned to Titirga in the way it is with Fane's Cish magic but it does show that the Gnosis and the Psukhe could be blended.
Does Kellhus posses enough passion to fill in the Cish part of Tirtiga's power? Unclear.
Well keep in mind Kellhus seems to have a special skill with the manipulation of space, and with meta-gnostic cants in general. He can alter the altering of the onta, which means he might be able to twist the spells of others rather than merely battering down their defenses.
Well Kosoter fears damnation, so I think he is just a fanatic or possibly a soul that was damned but somehow bounced back. The rules of the Outside seem to be regularities. (Same with the Inward, IMO, though those are less exploitable to souls bound in bodies.)
5. My personal thoughts about certain eventualities of TUC:
I would sort of agree, given the naridanar (sp?) that the WLW replaced mentioned that the Four Horned Brother can see reality in a way other gods miss. At the same time, it would be a little weird to have the WLW simply be wrong about his time sight without some deeper explanation.
I think Kellhus wants Zeum to take over the skeleton of the Empire in case he fails to stop the No-God from rising. That is assuming, of course, that Kellhus' plan isn't simply to control whatever the No-God is.
Well, my advice is to keep in mind the most important question that remains unanswered is Why Don't Dragons Wear Chorae?
Nay my child, I sayeth the Son is greater than the Father. Same with Jesus and Yawheh, Apollo and Zeus, and so it shall be with Wolverine and Professor Xavier.
In fact I think all fans of comics who don't prefer Marvel over DC shouldn't be allowed marriage licenses, so sayeth my god Professor X. You may just think of him as a fictional being but I knoweth him to be from a parallel universe contacting us through his powers and influencing creators to bring us scripture for $3.99 an issue.
Yeah, I recall us all talking about the possibility some investigation of the quantum level of reality resulted in seeing the true nature of souls and the outside. Since it takes a rather advanced civilization to make soulless creatures the easiest way to discover the distinction between souls and soulless beings is probably going to occur too late for many species going with Bakker's ideas about evolution making mean fuckers like the Inchies.
The other possibility is it took something like a nuclear explosion or worse device to cause the amount of suffering necessary to cause a topos on a world where the veil between Inward and Outside is thicker than Earwa's.
Well in some Hindu/Buddhist thought as well as Plotinus there's the idea of an underlying One that isn't exactly a deity but more a sort of Ground of Being that precedes gods. Then from there comes gods.
It's possible both Kellhus and the Cish have anthropomorphized the One into something resembling the idea of Yaweh or Krsna/Isvara, a Ground of Being with a distinct personality but this is not actually the case at all.
Can the Hundred act on other planets? Does magic make it easier for there to be Wights and Hell Frames and White Luck Warriors?
How exactly did the Inchies learn of their damnation if they apparently lived in a world where there isn't any obvious indication of paranormal phenomenon?
What I mean is yes they used the Inverse Fire to try and peer into Hell (or so the story goes), but why even bother making such a device? If there were religions and claims of damnation on their world that they ignored as they evolved and found no evidence, why did they begin to once ore fear such possibilities?
Did their evil reach such heights that they outpaced any other crime in history and thus made a topos? Or is it possible that transhumanism - the modifications the Inchies use - is also worthy of damnation? Or was it altering the brains of ensouled beings, which pissed off the gods because an ensouled being reduced to the intellect animal is granted Oblivion?
It seems that having the capacity for self-awareness, which may or not be a "pinching off" of the God's own personality into yet another delusion of individuality, is what makes "souls" and what feeds the Ciphrang and Hundred. Perhaps editing sentient brains to lose enough self-awareness makes them less tasty or even spares them from damnation.
Could total recollection be the key to oblivion and thus release from damnation, and this is why the Hundred drive people to hate sorcerers? Does total recollection erase the troublesome "I" by eliminating all ignorance (if we assume the individual soul-self in the Bakkerverse is mere[ly] a matter of Self-deception on the part of God)?
Consider this teaching which supposedly allowed Bahiya, who was not a monk, to reach enlightenment in mere seconds ->
"Then, Bāhiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself. When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bāhiya, there is no you in connection with that. When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two.
This, just this, is the end of suffering."