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Bakker's the Great Ordeal excerpts III: Barthes to Balzac(spoilers)


Kalnestk Oblast

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11 minutes ago, Baztek said:

I vehemently disagree. I don't think the Dunyains should be us. Who cares about all the knowledge of the universe if you're just a meat AI computing a bunch of 0s and 1s? 

Mimara and Serwe being focal points of the plot and metaphysics speak to Bakker's real message I think: philosophical understanding of the universe coupled with compassionate humanity.

Pretty much what Sci quoted earlier. Philosophy with the Art. 

I didn't say that the Dunyain should be us. I said that we should aspire to be the Dunyain. The Dunyain aren't just a meat AI. Kellhus, for instance, cares deeply about the world and the people. Koringhus saves a child. Moenghus tries to save everything too. 

Mimara is a focal point, but she's certainly not the only one. And while she sees with the view of God she, herself, isn't that special. Especially compared to Kellhus. Mimara has the compassionate humanity, but she has no philosophical understanding. The Inchoroi and the Consult understand everything but do not have any compassion. Only Kellhus has both. 

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I'm curious as to why/how 'mimicking' a relationship with the Absolute is still tantamount to perceiving the Absolute, at least as far as the 'holy signs' are concerned. 

Why would you think this is false? Why would you think Kellhus is false?

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Okay now that that's out of the way:

Kal, I don't buy for a second any of the saccharine shit Kellhus says about humanity. Do you? Why would you? I want Kellhus to be an actually Good Guy in all this black alien jizz too but I'm just not seeing it

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If I had to guess I'd say that Kellhus genuinely believes what he is doing is right and is trying to save the world. What the nature of that salvation is, or whether or not he is correct in his thinking are left to be determined.

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Apparently RSB's publicist quit Overlook last week. Dude can't catch a break.

Kalbear, I'm surprised you like TJE so much. It's my least favorite of the five. Other than the Moria-inspired sequence, the novel is mostly just setting up pieces -- it's an essential task, but the book feels somewhat incomplete. If he'd included the first big battle sequence for the Ordeal from WLW as a tandem climax to the Cil-Aujis section.... that would have been more riveting than the Sorweel gloomy-glooms.

I have a question: does it seem plausible, given where TGO ends, that Bakker can wrap it up in another 400-500 pages? 

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TJE has to do a ton of heavy lifting. It is a setup but it does a great job, and has enough cool bits along the way (all of the akka and mimara stuff, kelmomas creepiness, psatma) that I enjoyed it more. The moria sequence is also my favorite sequence in the whole series. WLW doesn't have any of that lifting and still doesn't do as cool of things as moria, and has some fairly dull crap too. 

As far as the other question I can't really answer that without knowing what wrap it up means, but the answer would definitely be spoilerish. From wert and pats descriptions I would think at least some of this answer is obvious.

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I think the most jaw dropping thing to me so far is seeing a character spell out a position that is shockingly similar to a position put forth on westeros in 2016 (not by me). My reaction was "holy shit, x has it dead to rights!"

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@Werthead, I noticed too something in the thread about Gin'yursis being an exile and the first to share the Gnosis with men. Is there corroborating evidence to date that anywhere?

Also, a review by Bakker's compatriot from a previous iteration of the OWW, as far as I recall. He says it's spoiler-free but since it references a return of the Kellhus POV and one other thing, I'll just leave it here. Great read, especially from those who enjoy teasing some philosophy from the text.

EDIT: Should also note, that compatriot is the Roger Eichorn that Bakker named as authorial successor of TSA in the Hotlist interview. He's got some sample stuff of his own on his blog there.

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It's not, unfortunately. Eichorn's engaged numerous times at SA and on TPB, soliciting criticisms for this or that excerpt. He recently put some sample chapters back up onto his blog. His writing seems eminently readable to me, regardless of what he's put over the years - but just one person's skewed reading experience.

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I Strongly suggest that everyone read the book in order.

I'm now caught up, having gone back and read the intervening Momemn and Aorsi chapters.  

Not only are these chapters awesome, they have thematic, and informational resonances to the Ishterebinth and Ishual chapters.

Thus, things that Malowebi or Esmenet or Kelmomas think and say and do have relevance to informing the reader's understanding of events and characters and revelations in those other threads and vice versa.

I now stand at the cusp of Dagliash, wondering at Canticles 6:6 The Chronicle of the Tusk.

Minor aside that really only has relevance to people who enjoy the chapter headers, Memgowa seems to be Zeumi, as Malowebi thinks he is a student of Memgowa. the Memgowa chapter headers in previous books have been some of my favorites, so that was a nice little easter egg.

and yup I've now read the "Oh, Scott Bakker, No." moment Kal was referring to. :-/

At times this book feels like a direct sequel to The Darkness that Comes Before, so clear and numerous are the resolutions to open questions from that book.

Which is not to say that there aren't major resolutions to other questions. It is comical to think that Bakker has not read any reader responses or forums, so explicit and numerous are the answers to many eternal questions. Either he anticipated every moment that has confounded us, or he's spied with pity upon our madnesses and ravings and wants to clear away the obfuscations.

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Calamitous insights never arrive whole.

pg. 124 ARC the Great Ordeal

There is a head on a pole behind you.

 

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Spoiler

I think I understand the kellhus halos now.

Not why Serwe sees them on the skin spy. that's still fucking beyond me.

Spoiler

hahaha, you didn't really think I'd post an explanation before the book is published did you? #Nevergonnagiveyouup

 

 

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2 minutes ago, Sci-2 said:

I don't really get why people want a definitive answer to HitB...

Dragons and chorae, OTOH, remains the most important question we can ask about the series.

The answer to HitB is kind of neat. And I think you in particular will like it. I definitely thought of you and Happy Ent when reading it. 

No answer at all to Dragons and Chorae, though there's an oblique reference to something like it elsewhere.

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