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LmL

The Mountain vs. The Viper & the Hammer of the Waters (Mythical Astronomy of Ice and Fire 4)

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Hey there friends of the Westeros forums! I've been laying low for the past month or so, but I have emerged from my cocoon with an essay and podcast which I am very proud of, and proud to present to you.  I had to step away for a moment to finish this one (and I've been busy with a new job).

Now so far my podcasts and matching wordpress essays have been reworking and expanding on my original essays which I wrote on here last year about the Long Night, Lightbringer, and the moon meteors. This new one is not, however - we're breaking some new ground (many puns intended). Basicaly, what you have here is a mythical astronomy breakdown of the better part of a chapter - the trial by combat between Ser Gregor, the Mountain that Rides, and Prince Oberyn Martell, the Red Viper of Dorne.  I have found that detailed combat scenes are usually the most detailed "lightbringer forging reenactments," if you will.  And by that I mean that these scenes contain a running layer of metaphor from start to finish, and that metaphor tells the story of the Long Night and the moon meteors, which is the truth behind the myth of Lightbringer, Azor Ahai, and Nissa Nissa.  The Red Viper plays the role of the sun, of course, and his spear and "Red Viper" aspect plays the role of Lightbringer the comet, the sword of the sun.  Ser Gregor plays the moon role - he's a stone giant who turns into riding (or falling) mountains - moon meteors.  Their entire battle tells the story of the moon explosion, the cause of the Long Night, Azor Ahai's forging of Lightbringer the sword from a moon meteor (this one is really specific, just wait), and best of all... it reveals the truth of the Hammer of the Waters. It's an exciting scene as it is, and it gets way better when you follow the mythical astronomy at play. 

I have many chapters earmarked for mythical astronomy breakdown - The Wayward Bride (Asha @ Deepwood Motte), Bran meets Sam at the Nightfort, Arya with the dragon skulls beneath Kings Landing, Jon Snow journeys to the weirwood grove of 9 in ADWD, The Iron Captain (Victarion on the open seas), both Oldtown chapters in AFFC, several of the Battle of the Blackwater Bay chapters - and many more.  But there are several reasons why I chose this chapter as my first breakdown.

  1. it's just really awesome astronomy metaphor action - clear, vivid, and easy to follow 
  2. it's a great wrap to all my ideas about the greasy black stone being associated with moon meteors 
  3. it contains some of the best Hammer of the Waters clues around 

The Hammer of the Waters is something I really have planted my flag on from the beginning as being a story of a moon meteor impact.  At first, it was just an instinctual thing - the hammer was "called down," and broke the land... sounds like an impact event.  My theory that the Lightbringer myth and that Quarthine "dragons come form the moon" story are both ancient, stylized memories of moon meteor impacts dictates that there should be other memories of such a traumatic event scattered about in accent folklore, just as our own flood myths are to be found around the world and refer to a very real period of intense flooding as the last ice age began ending between 13,000 - 7,000 BC.  As I began looking around for myths that might refer to falling meteors, the Hammer of the Waters always stood out, as well as the Ironborn myths of the Storm God's mighty thunderbolt and the island-drowning sea dragon Nagga.  But as I began to research more and more, I have found clue after clue which seems to back up this hypothesis - that the Hammer of the Waters was a moon meteor, and it fell at the beginning of the Long Night, not thousands of years before.  This latest essay contains all of my best evidence to support this idea, which I have collected over the past year. 

If I am right (overly dramatic tone), then this forces a discussion about the re-ordering of the supposed timeline of the Dawn Age and the Age of Heroes, as well as a discussion about what role (if any) the children of the forest may have had in "dropping the hammer," and about the nature of the children in general.

I for one have never bought the idea that they would commit an act of such destruction to the earth, and we've been given a red flag reason to doubt the "cotf did it" theory from the beginning - we are told that they didn't drop the Hammer until after the FM had crossed the Arm of Dorne in great numbers for centuries. It's a classic case of "closing the barn door after all the horses escaped." I have repeatedly voiced this one, simple question: if the children had the ability to drop such a big hammer as to shatter a land bridge, why wouldn't they have driven the First Men off by dropping small hammers on their ring forts? Ring forts are prime targets for mini hammers - all the FM are massed together in one location, and the Hammer seems to have the power to break stone - ring forts are made of stone.  I mean... how many times would the weird little evil forest elves have to destroy your forts remotely via magical earthquake before YOU got the f*ck out of there, you know? I'm thinking one, maybe two. You can't fight localized earthquakes, just like you can't fight the cold.

Then we have the idea that there are two different supposed locations where "the greenseers called down the hammer of the waters:" from the Isle of Faces (okay, makes sense), or the Children's Tower at Moat Cailin (huh what now?).  Tell me - working destructive blood magic from the top of a black tower - does that sound like children of the forest to you?  Hell no it doesn't.  That's because it wasn't.    

So yeah - none of it has ever made sense to me. And now I think I have a strong case to pin the Hammer of the Waters on the real culprit - that a-hole known as Azor Ahai and sometimes the Bloodstone Emperor (that these two were the same guy is a theory of mine, not canon, fyi). The moon cracked when Nissa Nissa was stabbed, and when the moon cracks, dragons pour forth. One of these dragons broke the arm of Dorne, and just to give us a clue about "whodunnit," George decided to name one of the remaining Stepstones islands... "Bloodstone."  It's true, look on the map.  The term "sun spear" refers to spears which come from the sun - Lightbringer moon meteors - and so we have "Bloodstone" and Sunspear" right by the broken arm.  This fits well with my theory that Azor Ahai, moon breaker, was the same man known as the Bloodstone Emperor who worshipped the black stone from the sky and committed an act of blood magic so foul that it was remembered as having caused the Long Night in the far east. The Bloodstone Emperor Azor Ahai broke the moon, and this resulted in falling stones which were "bleeding stars" and "sun spears," one of which broke the Arm of Dorne.... and so we have these names, Bloodstone and Sunspear, right by the broken arm. 

In the fight, Oberyn the solar warrior (playing the Azor Ahai role) stabs the lunar warrior, Gregor, in the arm with his poisonous black sun spear. This blow flashes like lightning, because the thunderbolt of the Grey King was a moon meteor memory as well.  There turns out to be a great many scenes where characters take significant arms wounds from a lightbringer symbol (Tyrion getting hit in the arm with an actual morningstar is one of my favorites), all of which seem to be symbolizing the Hammer of the Waters, and many of which involve references to lightning and thunder as well. I don't want to give the whole thing away in summary, but that provides you guys and gals with a tasty morsel or two to wet the appetite. 

With that, I give you Mythical Astronomy of Ice and Fire 4: The Mountain vs. The Viper and the Hammer of the Waters.  

You can listen to the podcast, or you can read the wordpress essay.  The essay has pictures, the podcast has funny voices.  When I say "funny voices," I mean my best drunken Dontos, my somewhat Monty-Python-like rendition of the Ghost of High Heart, and me growling into a stainless feel pot to simulate Gregor growling through his helm in the fight. I tried to lay off the "I am Inigo Montoya..." with the Red Viper quotes...  

If you haven't read my three earlier essays, you can find those here, with links to their matching podcasts. 

 

 

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On a personal note, I'm having a lot of fun doing the podcasting thing. I was already a musician with a home studio, and I've dabbled in podcasting before, so it came pretty naturally.  Reading in a life-like voice took a bit of practice and coaching from my talented wife, who is a singer and vocal major. Hopefully I'm doing okay with that aspect... I try to throw in jokes here and there to keep it lively. In any case, I have 4 main episodes up so far, plus one special collaboration I did with Aziz from History of Westeros on all things related to Asshai. Those five episodes have been listened to, collectively, over 15,000 times, which I'm a bit flabbergasted by. It's small peanuts compared to the most popular podcasts, but it's way more than I expected, and it's really encouraging to see so many people interested in the highly symbolic and somewhat abstract kind of analysis I'm doing, and in the correlations of ASOIAF to world mythology which I find so fascinating (I guess I can say WE find so fascinating!) Thanks to everyone who has listened and commented so far. I've received some really amazing comments from people who are excited about the topics we've explored so far and it really makes my freaking day, I have to say. Cheers and happy listening!

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Really dig your podcasts. Had a bit of a laugh at the end when you were going on about your love of really long media - pretty much exactly what I want in listening material. 

I've noticed you scrupulously avoid predictions/theories about what's coming next; is that intentional? It's a major, and welcome, departure from the majority of ASOIAF discussion, but I wonder sometimes if your analytical tools have a speculative function.

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5 hours ago, Knight and Dayne said:

Really dig your podcasts. Had a bit of a laugh at the end when you were going on about your love of really long media - pretty much exactly what I want in listening material. 

I've noticed you scrupulously avoid predictions/theories about what's coming next; is that intentional? It's a major, and welcome, departure from the majority of ASOIAF discussion, but I wonder sometimes if your analytical tools have a speculative function.

Hey there! You knew the pieces fit, right? Everyone knows Tool, but I'm also into Tull. My dad raised me on Tull and ELP, and it's been a big influence on me. :) Glad you got a kick out of that. ;)

Yes, I do consciously avoid making a lot of predictions, because as you imply, everyone is doing that and I feel it would detract from the main thrust of what I'm doing. I'm also just more interested in the past for whatever reason. And finally, I like to leave something for the reader / listener. I do sometimes suggest a range of possible implications or foreshadowings, just to get people's juices flowing. I like the idea of giving people some new info to work with so they predict and prognosticate, as opposed to fooling myself into thinking I'm some kind of prophet. Also, since the main patterns of symbolism can be manifest in so many different ways, it's a bit dodgy to make predictions. For example, I mentioned the idea of Kings Landing burning with all its wildfire caches. This fits the symbolism of the "King's landing" as in "a meteor landing," surely, but it doesn't have to happen to validate the symbolism. We've already seen Stannis "land" at KL and throw up a ton of sky-obscuring smoke. But Martin likes to repeat his patterns, so maybe it will happen. Maybe not. 

I sometimes like to say that the symbolic patterns and motifs provide a context for future events. While they don't always predict these events, when they do happen, the mythical astronomy provides context and meaning. Jon's death and foreshadowed resurrection shows us a resurrected skinchanger, which would be interesting by itself, but since we know Jon is a solar character stepping into the shoes of Azor Ahai reborn, we can see that dying and being resurrected is probably a major part of Azor Ahai's story, and we can expect Jon's future deeds to give us more clues about what the original AA did. For example, we have to ask if he was a skinchanger or greenseer (I say yes). 

If we see Mel sacrifice herself, we can know that is a Nissa Nissa move, and we can expect the result to symbolize Lightbriger. Jon himself symbolizes LB, so the idea of Mel sacrificing herself to raise Jon would fit. Unfortunately, Ghost is also a moon symbol, so I can certainly see Ghost dying to raise Jon (although as I have said, Ghost's ghost would have merged with Jon and would reside in his resurrected body. 

Dany, meanwhile, should replay the actions of Azor Ahai when he invaded Westeros, something I believe he did at Battle Isle in Oldtown. If we see Dany land at Oldtown (prediction warning), I will be stoked. 

The biggest prediction I have made is that the red comet will return and cause another moon disaster of some sort to kick off the Long Night. That's pretty major, don't you think? 

I also like Oathkeeper to light up with "black fire shot through with red and bits of gold," which is the description of the black fire of Drogon and Balerion. It's also the current color scheme of Oathkeeper. Ultimately I believe this is Jon's sword to wield. I'm very excited to see Brienne still wielding it in the show and working her way north. The race between Oathkeeper and Dawn to get to Jon is on, and Oathkeeper is winning. :) 

In any case, you caught the drift. I feel the major achievement of my work is to highlight what Martin is doing with symbolism and metaphor and with telegraphing the ancient past through those tools. I think it's enough for me to set people on that trail. I try to take a scholarly approach to it, and I feel like trying to predict everything would detract from that. When I predict, it's either just staring me in the face (like a second moon disaster), or I will throw out a range of possibilities, so the reader can run with them and have fun trying to use my info to make predictions or to analyze other predictive theories with. 

I do think that he symbolism points to Tyrion being a Targaryen, as I mentioned in the episode. 

Thanks for listening @Knight and Dayne! Let me know if any of my ramblings have given you any predictive insight. And what do you think about all he Hammer of the Waters stuff? What does this mean for the timeline of the cotf and First Men, do you think? 

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Well, I'm really not sure how this whole "following people" is supposed to work if people are not notified when someone they follow publishes a post. I have a bunch of people"following" me but it doesn't seem like anyone got the word. So... here come the tags.

@AlaskanSandman @Arya-Jon @Blue Tiger @Daendrew @DarkSister1001 @Darkstream @Durran Durrandon @evita mgfs @Falcon2908 @Flying Cat @Garett Hornwood @Greystark Reborn @J. Stargaryen @Jak Scaletongue @JonDayne @Lady Dyanna @Lord Wraith @LordToo-Fat-to-Sit-a-Horse @Meera of Tarth @MethylEthylBS @Miss007els @Red Raven @Rhoynish Blood @Ruhail @Sly Wren @The Lady Titus @The Ned's Little Girl @wiredup 

And some of my other friends and fellows...

@sweetsunray @Evolett @Seams @Isobel Harper @Voice @Rhaenys_Targaryen @SFDanny @Ygrain @Greymoon @Rippounet

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It's pretty clear to me that the cotf calling down the Hammer of the Waters is unlikely. At a minimum, it would have entailed the destruction of a lot of weirwoods in the neck, and while I get that they're not desert trees, breaking the arm of Dorne seems much more meteor impact-y than any of the stated powers of the cotf. And it does nothing to explain the Ironborn, which I think you've done a good job of tying up.

Prediction is what we do when stop having books to read. All of us get most of that wrong, but it's still kinda fun. I think you'll acknowledge pretty readily that your approach lends itself to a lot of interpretations of what's gonna happen next. Funny that you bring up Ghost; the ghost-as-Mithras' bull parallel was scarily resonant (though I really hope you're wrong about it). 

Curious what you've got to say about Littlefinger. There's giant symbolism around the dude, but I tend to see him as a nascent incarnation of what comes after. We've been promised an ice and fire cataclysm, (which we may or may not get, no complaints either way,) but the real point seems to be that thousands of years of tradition mean nothing to the iron laws of change and rebirth. Petyr Baelish seems to me to be the one who improbably gets that point.

Also, Mars Volta 4 lyfe.

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Hey LmL, thanks for tagging me. 

I have previously posted that the Hammer of the Waters is Nightsounder: The Hammerhorn of the Waters. I think the Hammerhorn is what  "called down" the moon @LmL.

Nightbringer: The Hammerhorn of the Waters

  • The Hammer of the Waters may be a horn; Euron's horn.
  • The Hammerhorn of the Waters will be sounded by Daenerys “the Unburnt”, who is the only person who can possibly sound it three times without burning from within to bring about the apocalypse.
  • Azor Ahai’s sword may a horn, asteroids striking the earth like a sword. Dany summons the red comet to strike the moon which brings the Long Night.
  • Chunks of moon falls to Earthos bringing plumes of smoke to block out the sun, bringing darkness. Simultaneously the moon is moved closer to Earthos and it's increased gravity brings flooding and cold.
  • The flooding freezes over and Westeros becomes the Land of Always Winter.
  • Dany is a Nissa Nissa figure to the man who makes her sound the Hammerhorn; one of the prophesied "heroes" to come again.

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15 minutes ago, Daendrew said:

Hey LmL, thanks for tagging me. 

I have previously posted that the Hammer of the Waters is Nightsounder: The Hammerhorn of the Waters. I think the Hammerhorn is what  "called down" the moon @LmL.

Nightbringer: The Hammerhorn of the Waters

  • The Hammer of the Waters may be a horn; Euron's horn.
  • The Hammerhorn of the Waters will be sounded by Daenerys “the Unburnt”, who is the only person who can possibly sound it three times without burning from within to bring about the apocalypse.
  • Azor Ahai’s sword may a horn, asteroids striking the earth like a sword. Dany summons the red comet to strike the moon which brings the Long Night.
  • Chunks of moon falls to Earthos bringing plumes of smoke to block out the sun, bringing darkness. Simultaneously the moon is moved closer to Earthos and it's increased gravity brings flooding and cold.
  • The flooding freezes over and Westeros becomes the Land of Always Winter.
  • Dany is a Nissa Nissa figure to the man who makes her sound the Hammerhorn; one of the prophesied "heroes" to come again.

Yes, we've talked about this idea before and I am in agreement with you on most of it. I do have a strong feeling the horn was involved in cracking the moon or steering the comet or whatever - I think the cry of the horn is symbolized by Nissa Nissa's cry of anguish which broke the moon. It's a sound that breaks the moon, you know? @Evolett first gave me the idea of the horn being a comet binder, so I have to credit her, but it makes a damn lot of sense and you've had similar ideas. I also agree Dany should be the one to blow the horn and "reach up and touch the comet," as she imagines doing in ACOK. We are on the same page here my friend. 

I don't however think the horn is the "one truth" of Lightbringer - I think it refers to a bunch of stuff. A person, a sword, a comet and the resulting meteors, the NW itself, perhaps the Wall, and the horn as well. They all seem to play a part, but are not mutually exclusive to each other, from what I can tell. 

When you have time to listen or read, let me know what you think. I talked a bit about the notion of the "Widow's Wail" and Nissa's cry, though I saved most of the sound ideas for an essay about the horn. I'm curious what you think of my Hammer of the Waters evidence too. :)

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8 minutes ago, LordToo-Fat-to-Sit-a-Horse said:

New essay, cool.

Thank you for all the hard work. I´ll read it weekend and come back to discuss.

Though i have to say, i was hoping for the one of the Gods Eye. :P

I almost released that one this time, but I thought the Mountain and Viper one had to come first - it's helpful to tackle the Hammer of the Waters first on its own, or else the God's Eye essay becomes bogged down with all the hammer stuff. Having established the Hammer and the eclipse alignment, the God's Eye stuff will now make a lot of sense. I need to do "moons of ice and fire" soon too, because I keep having to step around the issue of moon maidens being associated with ice or fire, respectively.

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2 hours ago, Knight and Dayne said:

It's pretty clear to me that the cotf calling down the Hammer of the Waters is unlikely. At a minimum, it would have entailed the destruction of a lot of weirwoods in the neck, and while I get that they're not desert trees, breaking the arm of Dorne seems much more meteor impact-y than any of the stated powers of the cotf. And it does nothing to explain the Ironborn, which I think you've done a good job of tying up.

Prediction is what we do when stop having books to read. All of us get most of that wrong, but it's still kinda fun. I think you'll acknowledge pretty readily that your approach lends itself to a lot of interpretations of what's gonna happen next. Funny that you bring up Ghost; the ghost-as-Mithras' bull parallel was scarily resonant (though I really hope you're wrong about it). 

Curious what you've got to say about Littlefinger. There's giant symbolism around the dude, but I tend to see him as a nascent incarnation of what comes after. We've been promised an ice and fire cataclysm, (which we may or may not get, no complaints either way,) but the real point seems to be that thousands of years of tradition mean nothing to the iron laws of change and rebirth. Petyr Baelish seems to me to be the one who improbably gets that point.

Also, Mars Volta 4 lyfe.

Littlefinger's sigil tells the tale - a stone giant's head with fiery eyes. That's a reference to the Titan of course. The titan is an AA reborn / moon meteor symbol - the fiery skull even appears as a star from a distance to Arya before seemingly to split into two twin stars. His broken sword calls out the broken sword motif connected with the comet, Lightbringer, and the Last Hero's sword. 

Baelish's giant head turns into a mockingbird, and the mockingbird plays into the myth of the siren, the seducing bird or maiden who lures travelers of the path and to their doom. The mockingbird mimics calls to trick its enemies, much like a siren.  The mermaid legends often have the same theme - they trick men into chasing them and drowning. This idea appears in several incarnations in ASOIAF and includes the courtesans on their floating pleasure barges, the 7 swan maidens slain by Huko the Andal, and a few others. This is another aspect of Azor Ahai reborn - namely, Nissa Nissa reborn, the reincarnated moon. This is the "drowned goddess / mermaid" aspect of the moon meteor. Specifically, the one which landed in the sea and drowned. There's a lot about drowning the moon in ASOIAF, and this is all about the drowned moon goddess / sea dragon meteor.

Baelish's sigil tells a story: from fiery eyed giant stone head (falling, burning meteor) to mockingbird / siren / drowned mermaid goddess. 

As an AA reborn figure, he can play either sun or moon roles, but I think he's primarily a solar character. His singing and luring is done to moon maidens like Sansa and Lysa, and his "Bael-ish" nature seems a callout to Bael the Bard, who stole a Stark maiden, and Bael's analog Rhaegar who did the same. That's all Azor Ahai stuff, stealing the moon maiden. As I was just discussing with @Daendrew, the horn might have been part of the magic used to cause the comet - moon collision, and so there you have your male solar king "singing" to abduct moon maidens. Petyr employs a bard in her abduction of Sansa and in the coverup of Lysa's murder at the moon door.  

The chapter at the Fingers where he and Sansa arrive is a terrific one. Petyr goes through Lightbringer forging parties with first Sansa and then Lysa, with Lysa being described in icy terms and Sansa fiery. There's even a bit where Petyr offers Sansa pomegranates, which are a clear Persephone symbol. Persephone, a moon goddess, ate the pomegranate seeds while down in Hades, and this doomed her to have to return there every year four either 3 or 6 months - they are a specific symbol of moon maiden abduction. This myth depicts the cycle of the seasons, you'll note, as Persephone's return triggers the long-delayed spring to return, and ghee absence causes a prolonged winter. Sounds familiar, right? Azor Ahai borrows quite a lot from Hades, abductor of moon maidens, so when Petyr offers Sansa pomegranate seeds, that's pretty clear symbolism. He's trying to abduct her to the underworld.

The fact that Sansa is eventually taken to the frozen, white Eyrie depicts a moon meteor lodging inside the hypothetical "ice moon," I believe, which is a subject I will explore in the future.    

There's a singing and luring aspect for the drowned goddess, too, as I mentioned above, and I think this might refer to the lure of using the magical moon meteors for dark magic, as the Bloodstone Emperor did (at Asshai, imo), and the Valyrians after them. 

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6 hours ago, LmL said:

Hey there! You knew the pieces fit, right? Everyone knows Tool, but I'm also into Tull. My dad raised me on Tull and ELP, and it's been a big influence on me. :) Glad you got a kick out of that. ;)

Yes, I do consciously avoid making a lot of predictions, because as you imply, everyone is doing that and I feel it would detract from the main thrust of what I'm doing. I'm also just more interested in the past for whatever reason. And finally, I like to leave something for the reader / listener. I do sometimes suggest a range of possible implications or foreshadowings, just to get people's juices flowing. I like the idea of giving people some new info to work with so they predict and prognosticate, as opposed to fooling myself into thinking I'm some kind of prophet. Also, since the main patterns of symbolism can be manifest in so many different ways, it's a bit dodgy to make predictions. For example, I mentioned the idea of Kings Landing burning with all its wildfire caches. This fits the symbolism of the "King's landing" as in "a meteor landing," surely, but it doesn't have to happen to validate the symbolism. We've already seen Stannis "land" at KL and throw up a ton of sky-obscuring smoke. But Martin likes to repeat his patterns, so maybe it will happen. Maybe not. 

I sometimes like to say that the symbolic patterns and motifs provide a context for future events. While they don't always predict these events, when they do happen, the mythical astronomy provides context and meaning. Jon's death and foreshadowed resurrection shows us a resurrected skinchanger, which would be interesting by itself, but since we know Jon is a solar character stepping into the shoes of Azor Ahai reborn, we can see that dying and being resurrected is probably a major part of Azor Ahai's story, and we can expect Jon's future deeds to give us more clues about what the original AA did. For example, we have to ask if he was a skinchanger or greenseer (I say yes). 

If we see Mel sacrifice herself, we can know that is a Nissa Nissa move, and we can expect the result to symbolize Lightbriger. Jon himself symbolizes LB, so the idea of Mel sacrificing herself to raise Jon would fit. Unfortunately, Ghost is also a moon symbol, so I can certainly see Ghost dying to raise Jon (although as I have said, Ghost's ghost would have merged with Jon and would reside in his resurrected body. 

Dany, meanwhile, should replay the actions of Azor Ahai when he invaded Westeros, something I believe he did at Battle Isle in Oldtown. If we see Dany land at Oldtown (prediction warning), I will be stoked. 

The biggest prediction I have made is that the red comet will return and cause another moon disaster of some sort to kick off the Long Night. That's pretty major, don't you think? 

I also like Oathkeeper to light up with "black fire shot through with red and bits of gold," which is the description of the black fire of Drogon and Balerion. It's also the current color scheme of Oathkeeper. Ultimately I believe this is Jon's sword to wield. I'm very excited to see Brienne still wielding it in the show and working her way north. The race between Oathkeeper and Dawn to get to Jon is on, and Oathkeeper is winning. :) 

In any case, you caught the drift. I feel the major achievement of my work is to highlight what Martin is doing with symbolism and metaphor and with telegraphing the ancient past through those tools. I think it's enough for me to set people on that trail. I try to take a scholarly approach to it, and I feel like trying to predict everything would detract from that. When I predict, it's either just staring me in the face (like a second moon disaster), or I will throw out a range of possibilities, so the reader can run with them and have fun trying to use my info to make predictions or to analyze other predictive theories with. 

I do think that he symbolism points to Tyrion being a Targaryen, as I mentioned in the episode. 

Thanks for listening @Knight and Dayne! Let me know if any of my ramblings have given you any predictive insight. And what do you think about all he Hammer of the Waters stuff? What does this mean for the timeline of the cotf and First Men, do you think? 

I only got through half of the essay or so before I had to giddy up, but I'll be reading the rest later.

Just wanted to say fantastic work again (as usual)!  I like that you try to stay grounded in the symbolism and parallels moreso than just predicting, although I'm sure you could do so even if as you say, only predict a range of possibilities.  It still leaves a lot to chew on and sort of branch off with for other perspectives within that range.  

It's a lot to digest but I'll have several meals if need be!

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Hey @LmL Thanks for the tag. It looks like a lot of effort and hard work went into all of this. I'll be sure to go through it properly when i wake up tomorrow ^_^

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4 hours ago, Ser Knute said:

I only got through half of the essay or so before I had to giddy up, but I'll be reading the rest later.

Just wanted to say fantastic work again (as usual)!  I like that you try to stay grounded in the symbolism and parallels moreso than just predicting, although I'm sure you could do so even if as you say, only predict a range of possibilities.  It still leaves a lot to chew on and sort of branch off with for other perspectives within that range.  

It's a lot to digest but I'll have several meals if need be!

 

1 hour ago, Ruhail said:

Hey @LmL Thanks for the tag. It looks like a lot of effort and hard work went into all of this. I'll be sure to go through it properly when i wake up tomorrow ^_^

Right on guys (and / or gals)!  I try to structure the episodes so that there are frequent stopping points between sections. I suppose a better marketing strategy would be to release a bunch of twenty minute episodes, but I just can't bear to lose the momentum. As you all can see, each episode builds a number of ideas up together and shows how they relate and interact. The point is, however, that you can break off a section at a time if that suits your schedule. I'm grateful for people who listen, however they listen. :)

Although I am putting out very long podcasts and essays, they are really like doing a scattered re-read, because most of the time I am doing strict interpretation of the text... I think it's fun to go back to familiar scenes and be able to take away something totally new. 

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14 minutes ago, LmL said:

 

Right on guys (and / or gals)!  I try to structure the episodes so that there are frequent stopping points between sections. I suppose a better marketing strategy would be to release a bunch of twenty minute episodes, but I just can't bear to lose the momentum. As you all can see, each episode builds a number of ideas up together and shows how they relate and interact. The point is, however, that you can break off a section at a time if that suits your schedule. I'm grateful for people who listen, however they listen. :)

Although I am putting out very long podcasts and essays, they are really like doing a scattered re-read, because most of the time I am doing strict interpretation of the text... I think it's fun to go back to familiar scenes and be able to take away something totally new. 

Oh the length is not a problem at all... I prefer them especially when the length isn't just filled with fluff.  I just had to be somewhere so I was forced to break away.  

They are like mini rereads but that makes them even more enjoyable because you frame things enough that I don't have to go... what was that chapter's theme... or, what symbologies were in that, etc.  No worries on this end, keep it up!!

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@LmL you actually picked up something that I was pondering the other day. Good to see someone else thought this way too.

 

Azor Ahai thrusting his redhot sword into Nissa Nissa to temper it and her screams causing cracks across the face of the moon seems like the sword being a meteor or other object hitting Nissa Nissa, who was the moon. I think you said it much more succinctly in your post. I actually have something I wanted to ask in private but it seems you can't receive messages! It's about your next essay.

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4 hours ago, StarkofWinterfell said:

@LmL you actually picked up something that I was pondering the other day. Good to see someone else thought this way too.

 

Azor Ahai thrusting his redhot sword into Nissa Nissa to temper it and her screams causing cracks across the face of the moon seems like the sword being a meteor or other object hitting Nissa Nissa, who was the moon. I think you said it much more succinctly in your post. I actually have something I wanted to ask in private but it seems you can't receive messages! It's about your next essay.

Have you read my earlier stuff? My first outlining the moon disaster and all that?

I need to delete some messages, my inbox is full. Apologies. You can just ask me here though if you wish. :)

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13 hours ago, Ser Knute said:

Oh the length is not a problem at all... I prefer them especially when the length isn't just filled with fluff.  I just had to be somewhere so I was forced to break away.  

They are like mini rereads but that makes them even more enjoyable because you frame things enough that I don't have to go... what was that chapter's theme... or, what symbologies were in that, etc.  No worries on this end, keep it up!!

Occasionally people mention that there's a bit of repetition, but as you say, I think it's helpful to set the stage for each scene or idea. And I figure people will stop and start, or forget a bunch of whatever I said in my last pod 2 months ago, so re-contextualizing things periodically is helpful, I think. 

I was thinking more about the topic of predicting the future vs not, and I had a thought. People get excited about predictions because it's natural to want to know where the story goes, what happens, how does it end, etc. But the point of my line of research is that there is still a lot more for us to 'get' in the novels already written than anyone realizes. There are mysteries laid out that we can actually solve with reasonable confidence if we learn to follow his use of symbolism and metaphor, without getting the next book. In fact, once you have the basic mythical astronomy ideas in mind, you can do an entirely fresh re-read of the series and and really be blown away all over again. I've never seen a writer work on so many levels, though I've never analyzed anything else in the depth I have here. I'm sure there are authors who do, but Martin really takes it to the extreme. There's very little that doesn't have a second or every third meaning or implication.

So, while I don't have a distaste for predictions, I feel like they are beside the point to my main focus, which is to shine a light on what Martin is doing with his metaphors and archetypes that refer to Dawn Age people and events. :)

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Great to see some new meat from the mythic astronomer!

A brief thought while I digest:

On the topic of weirwoods and burning brands I am struck particularly by the skinny, faceless weirwood (I think of it as the Arya tree) that Bran finds growing among the ruins of the Nightfort, like a torch left to guide future travelers to the well and the Black Gate.

 

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51 minutes ago, hiemal said:

Great to see some new meat from the mythic astronomer!

A brief thought while I digest:

On the topic of weirwoods and burning brands I am struck particularly by the skinny, faceless weirwood (I think of it as the Arya tree) that Bran finds growing among the ruins of the Nightfort, like a torch left to guide future travelers to the well and the Black Gate.

 

Yes, and I should have thought to tag you, eclipse-brother, as the eclipse talk goes into overdrive in this episode. :)

As for that weirwood - that's the one which scratches at the moon's face, as if it was trying to pull the moon down into the well. That's the well from which the black leviathan emerges. In other words, greenseers (but not cotf) pull down the moon into the sea, and out of that sea rises the black dragon or sea dragon or leviathan. That's the same story as the drowned god (nay, goddess) emerging from the sea with a burning brand. The Ironborn are alternately said to carry as weapons these burning brands, driftwood cudgels (still weapons from the sea), or in the ancient past, "foul black weapons which drank the souls of those they slew." Those tales have the Ironborn as demons from a watery hell - you get the idea. 

Theres also a scene with Jon and Quorin Halfhand as they climb to the Slirling Pass where the distant campfire looks like a red star. When Jon and Quorin reach the top and the red star, they throw down a burning brand. There's also a moon maiden on the top who almost dies, her eyes as white as hen's (moon's) eggs. So yes, the burning brand idea is fundamentally tied to the fire from heaven which was the falling moon meteor, the drowned moon goddess. 

When you combine that with the idea that the Storm God's thunderbolt set fire to a tree... you can see that burning trees and meteors have something to do with each other. I tend to interpret all the personifies trees, like the one at the NF which reaches for the moon, as depicting the actions of greenseers. Burning trees therefore = fire transformed greenseers, just as frozen trees that are white shadows armored in ice depict greenseers transformed by ice (the Others). 

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