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Feather Crystal

Are the extended seasons evidence of time loops?

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8 minutes ago, SirArthur said:

 

Well, it's a story embedded into medieval imagination. Where the maid is sacrificed to the dragon. I wonder why this story hasn't happened yet. ;)

She's there, its just that George told her story with a little twist. She sacrificed her baby, husband, and slave priestess to hatch the dragons, and then subjugated one of them with a whip.

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Hasn't GRRM already explained the irregular seasons as the result of magic? It's not a time loop in the sci-fi sense, which doesn't make sense because the irregularity doesn't seem to be repeating the same way. In the early press releases and stuff the book summary refers to an "ancient cataclysm," magic related obviously, that makes the seasons go crazy. In the books, Septon Barth writes that magic or mystical powers is the reason for seasonal irregularity and once upon a time it may have been regular as in the real world. Of course everyone ignores him. 

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23 minutes ago, Ghost+Nymeria4Eva said:

Hasn't GRRM already explained the irregular seasons as the result of magic? It's not a time loop in the sci-fi sense, which doesn't make sense because the irregularity doesn't seem to be repeating the same way. In the early press releases and stuff the book summary refers to an "ancient cataclysm," magic related obviously, that makes the seasons go crazy. In the books, Septon Barth writes that magic or mystical powers is the reason for seasonal irregularity and once upon a time it may have been regular as in the real world. Of course everyone ignores him. 

I would love it if you could find the SSM where GRRM comments on the irregular seasons and share it here.

The time loop is also irregular. The seasons don't seem to follow any particular pattern, but time is still moving forward, which is why humans continue to live their lives like normal humans do. They're born, grow up, mature, and die, however they have a role to play on the wheel of time. The situations are the same, but because they are different people the results vary - sometimes widely.

I am expecting the time loop to be the result of a magic spell placed upon time itself until a resolution can be found to fix it. There's some unknown ending that has been delayed from happening, because of the time loop.

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18 minutes ago, Feather Crystal said:

I would love it if you could find the SSM where GRRM comments on the irregular seasons and share it here.

 

Here's the interview transcript: http://ew.com/article/2011/07/12/george-martin-talks-a-dance-with-dragons/

Quote highlights in this Reddit thread: https://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/45qy0z/spoilers_everything_irregular_seasons_and_their/

 

If it's a time loop they would go through with the same motions, not different, irregular motions. The situations are not really the same, they just look similar because history repeats itself as it does in the real world, irrespective of the presence of a time loop. 

The wonky seasons are not caused by a spell per se, but is the result of a cataclysmic event caused by some time of magical spell/ritual/overuse. 

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1 hour ago, Ghost+Nymeria4Eva said:

Here's the interview transcript: http://ew.com/article/2011/07/12/george-martin-talks-a-dance-with-dragons/

Quote highlights in this Reddit thread: https://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/45qy0z/spoilers_everything_irregular_seasons_and_their/

 

If it's a time loop they would go through with the same motions, not different, irregular motions. The situations are not really the same, they just look similar because history repeats itself as it does in the real world, irrespective of the presence of a time loop. 

The wonky seasons are not caused by a spell per se, but is the result of a cataclysmic event caused by some time of magical spell/ritual/overuse. 

Thank you for the links. This is the GRRM quote that I saw:

"I have people constantly writing me with science fiction theories about the seasons — “It’s a double star system with a black dwarf and that would explain–” It’s fantasy, man, it’s magic."

This doesn't really disqualify (or confirm) time loops, but I think my theory does fall on the side of fantasy, because it's something done with magic, as was the time loop created by Dr Strange.

Wouldn't you agree that a cataclysmic event would be more sci-fi than fantasy, because it would be a physical cause rather than magical?

I do appreciate the links though. I'll go back and read them more thoroughly later when I have more time.

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21 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

Where is the quote you mentioned from? Because in ASOIAF there are references to the ouroboros, or rather the serpent biting it's own tail. Here are two: 

“The dragon is time. It has no beginning and no ending, so all things come round again. Anders Yronwood is Criston Cole reborn."

Asha asks her uncle to lend her his history book so she can read about the last kingsmoot, and Rodrik frowns and says “Archmaester Rigney once wrote that history is a wheel, for the nature of man is fundamentally unchanging. What has happened before will perforce happen again.” Rodrik says he thinks about what Rigney said whenever he thinks about Euron and how much he’s like Urron Greyiron, the man that butchered his way to the top at the last kingsmoot. 

 

My apologies, I didn't mean to give the impression the quote was from ASoIaF, it's from our world (I always thought it was Mark Twain, but maybe I'm misremembering...)

But the spooky bit is, after my internet connection gummed up yesterday, I carried on with my re-reading, and I've just got to Feast, and those two bits you mentioned came up pretty quickly, and I thought 'Hmmm, the George is suggesting pretty heavily that Westerosi believe time is a loop here....' Anyway, now you've mentioned them I no longer need to go back to the Search site to find those passages and skewer myself with them.

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16 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

 

Wouldn't you agree that a cataclysmic event would be more sci-fi than fantasy, because it would be a physical cause rather than magical?

 

I would say it's neither sci-fi or fantasy, because it happens in the real world. But the cataclysm in ASOIAF is magic-related so it's more fantastical. 

Also, if they are in a time loop, it would be like an 8,000-year loop where the Long Night keeps happening following a series of events. In that case, Azor Ahai would not be reborn, he'd just be the same guy/gal as the last time. Dany's dragons would be the world's first dragons that all other dragons descend from and it goes in a circle back to Dawn Empire, Valyria, and Long Night. It's not necessarily bad as a concept but just doesn't work in ASOIAF. 

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4 hours ago, Rufus Snow said:

My apologies, I didn't mean to give the impression the quote was from ASoIaF, it's from our world (I always thought it was Mark Twain, but maybe I'm misremembering...)

But the spooky bit is, after my internet connection gummed up yesterday, I carried on with my re-reading, and I've just got to Feast, and those two bits you mentioned came up pretty quickly, and I thought 'Hmmm, the George is suggesting pretty heavily that Westerosi believe time is a loop here....' Anyway, now you've mentioned them I no longer need to go back to the Search site to find those passages and skewer myself with them.

I'm glad I could give you a spooky tingle! :cool4:

2 hours ago, Ghost+Nymeria4Eva said:

I would say it's neither sci-fi or fantasy, because it happens in the real world. But the cataclysm in ASOIAF is magic-related so it's more fantastical. 

Also, if they are in a time loop, it would be like an 8,000-year loop where the Long Night keeps happening following a series of events. In that case, Azor Ahai would not be reborn, he'd just be the same guy/gal as the last time. Dany's dragons would be the world's first dragons that all other dragons descend from and it goes in a circle back to Dawn Empire, Valyria, and Long Night. It's not necessarily bad as a concept but just doesn't work in ASOIAF. 

I was thinking on this quite a bit yesterday with the time loop and how it might work, and it's not the people themselves that are being reborn, but rather the roles and situations. And I was wondering why would whoever did this want to repeat history? The time it takes for the sun to come up and set is still working normally, as does the length of time it takes to go around the sun, but "history" is what has been put on a perpetual holding cycle, and I'm thinking it has something to do with suppressing and warding magic.

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19 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

Wouldn't you agree that a cataclysmic event would be more sci-fi than fantasy, because it would be a physical cause rather than magical?

Your minor premise, "a physical cause rather than magical", is for now an unproven assumption, or did I miss something?

Your major premise, that a physical cause makes it "more sci-fi than fantasy", is, OTOH, just false. Pure unadulterated fantasy words usually still have working physics. The One Ring wasn't destroyed by magic, but in the fires of a volcano.

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2 hours ago, Ferocious Veldt Roarer said:

Your minor premise, "a physical cause rather than magical", is for now an unproven assumption, or did I miss something?

Your major premise, that a physical cause makes it "more sci-fi than fantasy", is, OTOH, just false. Pure unadulterated fantasy words usually still have working physics. The One Ring wasn't destroyed by magic, but in the fires of a volcano.

My theory is that the time loops are a magical cause that affects the seasons. My comment about sci-fi vs fantasy was based on GRRM's interview where he said he gets daily letters about the seasons with people listing their theories like "double star system with a black dwarf" etc, and his assertion that it's just "magic" - to me sounds like he's discounting physical causes.

In the Dr Strange movie he placed a spell on time and put it into a continual time loop BEFORE he approached Dormammu. That way if he's killed the loop will restart and he'll come alive again. This coming back to life theme seems rampant in ASOIAF, so I am wondering if the Last Hero actually died, but because he had come to them for help and they were compelled to provide "guest right" the Children of the Forest put "history" in a continual loop so that mankind would not die?

Edited by Feather Crystal

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On 13/03/2018 at 4:32 PM, Feather Crystal said:

I agree time is still moving forward, but if it's a time loop it's more like a circle - a wheel - rather than a straight line, which is what the serpent eating its own tail looks like.

I like this.

Cersei and Doran both have very striking wheeled transport (a truly gigantic wheelhouse, an unusual wheeled chair) - and both of them represent the sun in their own way - she's compared to the sun very often, and called a goddess twice; he has his sun sigil, and a lot of bright copper that might represent the setting sun (the sun is in very bad shape as represented by Doran!).

So the Day/Night cycle is linked to a wheel. Beyond this, we're given that the Long Night lasted a generation, so the seasons are on a wheel also. And the Long Night is also the time when destiny calls, and heroes are reborn - if the heroes fulfil their role in the neverending story, life goes on; otherwise I suppose it's all howling in the the darkness forever. :(

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1 hour ago, Springwatch said:

I like this.

Cersei and Doran both have very striking wheeled transport (a truly gigantic wheelhouse, an unusual wheeled chair) - and both of them represent the sun in their own way - she's compared to the sun very often, and called a goddess twice; he has his sun sigil, and a lot of bright copper that might represent the setting sun (the sun is in very bad shape as represented by Doran!).

So the Day/Night cycle is linked to a wheel. Beyond this, we're given that the Long Night lasted a generation, so the seasons are on a wheel also. And the Long Night is also the time when destiny calls, and heroes are reborn - if the heroes fulfil their role in the neverending story, life goes on; otherwise I suppose it's all howling in the the darkness forever. :(

:bowdown:   Love, love, love the wheel symbolism you've shared! And it ties in to something that I haven't shared on this forum yet, because I don't want to confuse the readers of this thread. But the time loop theory does have a second "step" (for lack of a better word)  that has to do with the titled chapters that begin with A Feast for Crows chapter 1 - The Prophet. I'm sure you've noticed that GRRM starting giving chapter names rather than POV chapters? Anyway, at the risk of derailing my own thread I'll share part of this expansion idea. 

I believe the time loop may be connected to when the Others were defeated, the Wall was built, and magic was sealed and warded into the Wall. Sometime at the beginning of Game of Thrones the warding either became frayed with age or someone deliberately unraveled the spells, because suddenly magic returned, white walkers returned, and dragons were hatched. When that happened this time loop of history became like a mirror and reflected the past. Reflections are opposite in the mirror, and geographically Dorne is the opposite/mirrored reflection of Casterly Rock. Therefore the current Martell family is reliving the history of the Lannisters from 16-20 years ago.

There are many parallels to draw between Arianne and Cersei, and Dorwin and Tywin. Even their captain of guards Areo Hotah to Illyn Payne and Gregor Clegane. But like I said - I don't want to derail this discussion, but I very much like your connections between "wheels", "suns", and the two families!

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@Feather Crystal Thank you! I think this imagery of the wheeled sun could be surprisingly solid. I've just remembered that Cersei tries to ride her massive sun chariot through the gates of Winterfell, but can't make it - obviously the sun is excluded from winter.

So it's brilliant that you're already working on theories on Dorne and Casterly Rock (not to mention chapter headings - I have always wondered...)  Look forward to reading it all. :)

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46 minutes ago, Springwatch said:

@Feather Crystal Thank you! I think this imagery of the wheeled sun could be surprisingly solid. I've just remembered that Cersei tries to ride her massive sun chariot through the gates of Winterfell, but can't make it - obviously the sun is excluded from winter.

So it's brilliant that you're already working on theories on Dorne and Casterly Rock (not to mention chapter headings - I have always wondered...)  Look forward to reading it all. :)

Thank you for your encouraging words!

There are links in my signature at the bottom of my post to my earlier writings on the titled chapters, but I have to say my theories have evolved slightly since I first began work on the time loop and the mirrored inversions.

The link titled Eating the Dragon's Tail was my introduction essay, but I think I wrote the darn thing two years ago. Even so I think quite a bit of it is still in harmony with this thread. I explain in this introduction essay that the titled chapters are a type of Jabberwocky, but once you learn the language, a second (inverted) story is revealed.

I've written essays for a number of the titled chapters, but only made it to The Reaver before getting sidetracked. The Queenmaker analysis was my favorite. It's about Arianne trying to crown Myrcella, and if you believe in the mirrored time loop theory, you'll see the lengths Cersei went to prior to the Rebellion to prevent "someone else" from being crowned.

Edited to add: If you are viewing on your cell phone you won't see the links in anyone's signature. So, here are two links:

Eating the Dragon's Tail

The Queenmaker

Edited by Feather Crystal

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I know that this could be taking out all of the fun, but seasons in Westeros are varied in length because it's interesting for the plot. It is impossible to happen, via any explanations. For one thing, long winters would kill all of the plant and insect life that is the basis of all land ecosystems. No large animal could survive on so little food for so long.

Similarly, how would they know the length of years without seasons to track them?

Really, the varied seasons are just explained as, "Because there's magic in this world." Looking into it with too much kind of ruins it, as it doesn't hold up to scrutiny, and I think there isn't meant to be a defined explanation.

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1 hour ago, Yukle said:

I know that this could be taking out all of the fun, but seasons in Westeros are varied in length because it's interesting for the plot. It is impossible to happen, via any explanations. For one thing, long winters would kill all of the plant and insect life that is the basis of all land ecosystems. No large animal could survive on so little food for so long.

Similarly, how would they know the length of years without seasons to track them?

Really, the varied seasons are just explained as, "Because there's magic in this world." Looking into it with too much kind of ruins it, as it doesn't hold up to scrutiny, and I think there isn't meant to be a defined explanation.

The author has promised to explain the seasons eventually, but the reason will be due to a magical cause. The planet still takes a turn every 24 hours, there's a moon that takes four weeks to go around the planet, and it still takes 365.25 days for the planet to orbit around the sun, so months and years are normal in length. The maesters measure daylight to determine the seasons, and then announce their findings and the changing seasons by sending ravens. The various regions store up a certain percentage of their harvest once the end of summer is announced, and will increase that percentage if the summer was long - in anticipation of an equally long winter.

 

  Shireen gave a brave little nod. “Mother said the white raven means it’s not summer anymore.”

  “That is so, my lady. The white ravens fly only from the Citadel.” Cressen’s fingers went to the chain about his neck, each link forged from a different metal, each symbolizing his mastery of another branch of learning; the maester’s collar, mark of his order. In the pride of his youth, he had worn it easily, but now it seemed heavy to him, the metal cold against his skin. “They are larger than other ravens, and more clever, bred to carry only the most important messages. This one came to tell us that the Conclave has met, considered the reports and measurements made by maesters all over the realm, and declared this great summer done at last. Ten years, two turns, and sixteen days it lasted, the longest summer in living memory.”

  “Will it get cold now?” Shireen was a summer child, and had never known true cold.

  “In time,” Cressen replied. “If the gods are good, they will grant us a warm autumn and bountiful harvests, so we might prepare for the winter to come.” The smallfolk said that a long summer meant an even longer winter, but the maester saw no reason to frighten the child with such tales.

 

 

Edited by Feather Crystal

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On 16/03/2018 at 10:12 AM, Feather Crystal said:

The author has promised to explain the seasons eventually, but the reason will be due to a magical cause. The planet still takes a turn every 24 hours, there's a moon that takes four weeks to go around the planet, and it still takes 365.25 days for the planet to orbit around the sun, so months and years are normal in length. The maesters measure daylight to determine the seasons, and then announce their findings and the changing seasons by sending ravens. The various regions store up a certain percentage of their harvest once the end of summer is announced, and will increase that percentage if the summer was long - in anticipation of an equally long winter.

The only way you can know how long a year is is to have a frame of reference. Humanity figured it out because seasons recur with regularity.

Westeros would have no need of a “year” as such because they don’t have repeating cycles of seasons. They are instead erratic and unpredictable. They would have no way of knowing that their planet has a regular orbit, equal to a year.

I understand how maesters know the changing seasons, as that can be measured. As for their year, though, they have no way of knowing.

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42 minutes ago, Yukle said:

The only way you can know how long a year is is to have a frame of reference. Humanity figured it out because seasons recur with regularity.

Westeros would have no need of a “year” as such because they don’t have repeating cycles of seasons. They are instead erratic and unpredictable. They would have no way of knowing that their planet has a regular orbit, equal to a year.

I understand how maesters know the changing seasons, as that can be measured. As for their year, though, they have no way of knowing.

They could measure the year by using the position of the constellations as a reference. We know they study astronomy and that they have twelve houses defined, so it seems like they have a pretty reasonable astronomical calendar.

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5 hours ago, Yukle said:

The only way you can know how long a year is is to have a frame of reference. Humanity figured it out because seasons recur with regularity.

Westeros would have no need of a “year” as such because they don’t have repeating cycles of seasons. They are instead erratic and unpredictable. They would have no way of knowing that their planet has a regular orbit, equal to a year.

I understand how maesters know the changing seasons, as that can be measured. As for their year, though, they have no way of knowing.

No, not seasons but how long it takes for the planet to revolve around the sun. Martin has talked about this ages ago.

 

MEASURING TIME

[Summary of initial mail: The people in the books count their ages in years. These seem to have the same lengths as our years. But ours come from the seasons we have: The seasons in the seven kingdoms are much longer. How do they come to this way of counting time?]

Years are not based on seasons, even in the real world. They are based on how long it takes the earth to revolve around the sun... i.e., on astronomy, the position of the sun and moon and stars. Ancient monuments like Stonehenge and Newgrange served astronomical purposes as well as religious, and helped measure the passage of years, the summer and winter solstices, etc.

 

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Now that we've settled (somewhat) that the length of days, months, and years on Planetos are about the same as earth, I'd like to hear other's ideas for the erratic seasons. I've offered my idea - that the seasons are caught in a "history loop". I nearly said "time" loop, but I think the word "time" is confusing some readers. The concept of time can have multiple meanings. There's the actual time of day, but time can also mean "a long time ago", or "back in my time" which is more of a reference to history. If we can think about this puzzle in terms of history and why anyone would want history to be repeated, then maybe we can come up with some theories as to "who" and "why". 

Edited by Feather Crystal

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