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Ski the Swift

The Judging Eye V

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Well, the Inchoroi's incompetency seems to have been entirely Sil's fault. He seems to have wanted a nice awesome battle, rather than just wait for Nonmen to die out. Blame Sil... and the Inchoroi for having a monarchy.

Do the Inchoroi have no females? The brothers are clearly male, they call themselves brothers not siblings. The ship may have been their mother, but I wonder if there were originally Inchoroi females, they just had too much fun stabbing holes in themselves to get penetrated in...

Or, like, in those Olympos and Ilium books, forget by who, the superhumans all engineered themselves into females (and then into Greek Gods). Maybe something similar happened, except the Inchoroi all went male.

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And the Sclvendi didn't have kids either. No one did. They were just totally cool about it

Do we know that though? I remember someone postulated that the Swazond had something to do with trapping souls, and that this store of souls could provide souls to inhabit Scylvendi babies. Just a theory obviously, but I liked it. I have trouble envisioning an entire people actively fighting for their own extinction.

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But that's what the Scylvendi actually wanted - they worshipped the most violent of all gods because that god was the Swazond of Swazonds.

And yeah, there was that crap about the notion that the literal scar was awesome magic goodness that ended that soul and removed it from play entirely, and that was really groovy and all that, but I think it was mostly a way for Bakker to illustrate how Moe could not pass through the realm of the Inrithi with those wacky scars on his arms.

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Just to chime on in an old topic, we don't know that the plague of still-births affected the Scylvendi. The still-births may have been selective. It's hard to see that the No-God could have attracted mortal worship otherwise.

@Jurble, that author's name is Dan Simmons; I also recall that it was explained that the Inchoroi abandoned sexual reproduction aeons ago (but not sex of course), so gender was unimportant. But please lay off the quantum mechanics; it doesn't have a place here.

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But...the point of the Scylvendi's religion and entire viewpoint is that they are all about the nihilism and their worship is about worshipping the end of things. Swazonds are how they practice worship, after all - by killing people.

How it doesn't follow that they'd be fine living out is a bit of a confusion to me. From a pragmatic standpoint, yeah, it doesn't make sense. But they're a bunch of retards who are trapped on the same path anyway. It's not like the Consult wanted to work with them. I'm fairly certain Cnaiur says as much in the first book at one point, talking about worshipping the No-God and being happy everything was going to die.

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Just to chime on in an old topic, we don't know that the plague of still-births affected the Scylvendi. The still-births may have been selective. It's hard to see that the No-God could have attracted mortal worship otherwise.

@Jurble, that author's name is Dan Simmons; I also recall that it was explained that the Inchoroi abandoned sexual reproduction aeons ago (but not sex of course), so gender was unimportant. But please lay off the quantum mechanics; it doesn't have a place here.

What's wrong with bringing physics into metaphysics? Especially since the Inchoroi were a space-faring race that had never encountered metaphysics before this point, and relied on space-age weaponry before running out of power.

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I keep thinking that sorcerers damn themselves. They can see more angles of the world and their voice can sound the outside, why wouldn't their beliefs have a similar power? Akka thinks he is damned because that is what he was taught to believe and so did the other sorcerers. Kellhus may be using the religious beliefs of people because they are one of the strongest and most unthinking part of most people's minds.

Some problems with this:

Moe didn't believe in damnation yet Kellhus said he eventually would.

Nonmen didn't believe in damnation until later in their history. I'm referring to the scene where Cleric speaks with the Mountain Ghost and it mentions damnation.

The Fanim thought the Cishaurim were holy priests but we aren't sure if they were damned.

Another thing I was thinking, maybe the No-God is the God. The God is supposedly an unthinking sum of all the levels of Earwa (I think) but what if you pulled enough of him into the world and trapped it. Gave it a soul on a really large scale. So instead of a sleeping God you have one waking up. It would explain why he didn't know what he was.

I keep wondering what Bakker meant when he mentioned that maybe the No-God was the savior and if it was, what would you do?

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I think he meant that the God is a douchebag for damning people, and the No-God effectively frees you from that situation, also sexism.

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Could somebody be so kind as to refresh my memory about something? I can't recall whether the No-God was heard by Achamian in one of his Seswatha dreams. I thought he was, but I'm not sure.

Is this the quote you are looking for?

The Great King of Kyraneas clutched Seswatha about the shoulders, but the sorcerer could not hear his cry. Instead he heard the voice, uttered through a hundred thousand Sranc throats, flaring like bright-burning coals packed into his skull . . . The voice of the No-God.

WHAT DO YOU SEE?

See? What could he . . .

I MUST KNOW WHAT YOU SEE.

The Great King turned from him, reached for the Heron Spear.

TELL ME.

Secrets . . . Secrets! Not even the No-God could build walls against what was forgotten! Seswatha glimpsed the unholy Carapace shining in the whirlwind’s heart, a nimil sarcophagus sheathed in choric script, hanging . . .

WHAT AM—

Achamian woke with a howl, his hands cramped into claws before him, shaking.

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What's wrong with bringing physics into metaphysics? Especially since the Inchoroi were a space-faring race that had never encountered metaphysics before this point, and relied on space-age weaponry before running out of power.

I didn't say physics, I said quantum mechanics. It (QM) means fuck all when applied to these discussions. If you don't know already, you might be interested to know that Schroedinger conceived of his famous cat experiment because he wanted to demonstrate the absolute absurdity of QM when applied to the macroscopic world (i.e. to Erwin Schroedinger the cat was either dead or not dead, not in some farcical in-between state). As regards how a technological, star-faring race came to terms with real sorcery and damnation, well that's a fascinating question that I hope is explored in the later novels.

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I knew the intention of Schroedinger, but still, if no one can observe the No-God inside the sarcophagus, including the No-God itself, then he exists and doesn't exist simultaneously. It's like, everyday lightening hits a tree somewhere, and in 99.999~8% of all probable worlds, the tree burns, but in some alternate probability, a portion of that trees molecules are rearranged into chocolate, and if enough energy was imparted, however improbable, the atoms in that tree have rearranged into an entire chocolate cake. The No-God may be in a similar situation, he both died, and didn't die. And if Bakker is going along with multiple worlds theory, then the No-God did indeed die, regardless of observation; but if he's going with single-world, then the No-God is both alive and dead.

I have no idea what I'm talking btw, just putting my thoughts out there, my knowledge of quantum mechanics is from skimming wiki articles and sci-fi novels >_>.

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I think that Kalbear and some others are making a critical logical fallacy in their analysis of Mimara seeing these sorcerers as damned, which is that we have no idea why they are damned. It's easy to assume that it's because they are sorcerers, since that supports the point that Kellhus is a fraud, but it could easily be that these particular men are damned for other reasons. If we use the lifestyles of the sorcerers whose POV we see - Akka and Eleazaras in particular - as a guide, then we can make a reasonable guess that many sorcerers lead somewhat sordid lives. Perhaps it is their congress with whores and such that damns them.

I am aware that this is in no way more likely than the other possibilities, but it must be considered before a firm judgment can be made.

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Well, the Inchoroi's incompetency seems to have been entirely Sil's fault. He seems to have wanted a nice awesome battle, rather than just wait for Nonmen to die out. Blame Sil... and the Inchoroi for having a monarchy.

Sil was very dead by the time of the great incompetence of letting the no god go to war.

But please lay off the quantum mechanics; it doesn't have a place here.

What are you, Bakker's new avatar? How would you know that QM has no place here? Schoedinger cat analogy above doesn't make sense to me, but that does not support your statement. Likely Bakker is not thinking about QM in the book (it would contradict the Logos if nothing else).

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Sil was very dead by the time of the great incompetence of letting the no god go to war.

Right, yeah I wasn't thinking straight. He couldn't exactly have waited out the immortal Non-men. But he probably shouldn't have taken the field against them or something, could have stayed holed up in Golgotterath, and let the Nonmen fall to Man, and then pick up the pieces later. I think it was his taking the field, expecting the Nonman to be devastated by the loss of their women that was his great error, as it led to the near extinction of his race.

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................................

What are you, Bakker's new avatar? How would you know that QM has no place here? Schoedinger cat analogy above doesn't make sense to me, but that does not support your statement. Likely Bakker is not thinking about QM in the book (it would contradict the Logos if nothing else).

Is that a non-sequitur or what? How do I know that quantum mechanics doesn't have a place here? Perhaps because nowhere in the book do we see matrices or wave-functions; nor do we see it in the discussion here. Quantum mechanics deals with the behaviour of fundamental, non-macroscopic particles; it uses the language of mathematics. Those seem like good enough reasons to me to preclude its discussion.

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I think that Kalbear and some others are making a critical logical fallacy in their analysis of Mimara seeing these sorcerers as damned, which is that we have no idea why they are damned.
It's a stronger argument if you go with Akka's halted statement about what the Judging Eye is (or his refusal to say) and simply say that we don't even know what Mimara sees.

But.

She's not surprised that sorcerers are damned; she's not surprised at Cleric's damnation or Akka's. She doesn't associate it with damnation; she figures that because she's a Few, that's what they look like to everyone and she's not been able to talk it over with anyone. But the implication is that this is how people with the Mark look to her sometimes.

Now, you can assume that every single person that she has seen with this damnation taste has done horrible things, like fuck whores (though again: Kellhus stated that whores aren't horrible either as long as they believe in Kellhus, so even that's okay). Or, you can assume that the damnation goes with something that we know is damnable right now - like being a sorcerer.

Which is more likely? That Bakker is pulling a giant con game, setting up Akka to believe that Kellhus is a fraud and now has the means to prove it somewhat only to say 'sorry, sucker, you fail'? and making us believe that Kellhus can alter objective reality?

Or is it more likely that Mimara does see the damnation of sorcery because this is what's actually stated in the text, and Kellhus - who we know for a certainty to be a big fat liar - is a big fat liar?

Which fits the narrative better? Which fits the story better? Which makes more sense given what facts we know?

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Or, you can assume that the damnation goes with something that we know is damnable right now - like being a sorcerer.

I agree with you and think this is the most likely explanation.

I also infer (with low confidence) that Mimara’s judging eye only sees damnation caused by sorcery. There are plenty of other reasons for damnation (such as prostitution), but my feeling is that Mimara only sees damnation where she already sees the Mark. (This hunch is largely consistent with the passages I quoted upthread.)

Another aspect to this: It could be that Bakker shares my aversion to dichotomic thinking—he seems to have deep respect for the quantitative sciences, so maybe his model of damnation is similar: damnation is a question of degree. (We do know that the Mark comes in different strengths, so damnation might also be a continuum.) Then, rather than completely eradicate the sin betokened by sorcery, Kellhus’s New Law would merely weaken its effect. Enough to make some of the most devout sorcerers look only a little hoary (where they were really hoary twenty years ago), and actually give them a fair shot at not being tortured in Hell for eternity. Of course, Achamian and Incariol are at least as damned as they’ve always been, Akka probably turned it up a few notches.

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I also infer (with low confidence) that Mimara’s judging eye only sees damnation caused by sorcery. There are plenty of other reasons for damnation (such as prostitution), but my feeling is that Mimara only sees damnation where she already sees the Mark. (This hunch is largely consistent with the passages I quoted upthread.)

Except that Mimara sees that women are less than men with the judging eye so it sees more than sorcerous damnation.

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Except that Mimara sees that women are less than men with the judging eye so it sees more than sorcerous damnation.

Agreed. By the way, I was hunting for that quote and wanted to post it together with the others about damnation, but couldn’t find it. I’m sure I’ve scanned through all Mimara-related passages after Akka tells her she has the Judging Eye, so it must be earlier in the book.

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It's when Mimara sits outside the wizard's tower (Hunoreal is the chapter) because she has nowhere else to go.

"But more and more the different eye seems to open, one that has perplexed her for many years - that frightens her like an unwanted yen for perversion. Its lid is drowsy, and indeed it slumbers so deep she often forgets its presence. But when it stirs, the very world is transformed. For moments at a time, she can see them... Good and evil.

Not buried, not hidden, but writ like another colour or texture across the hide of everything . The way good men shine brighter than good women. Or how serpents glow holy, while pigs seem to wallow in polluting shadow. The world is unequal in the eyes of the God - she understands this with intimate profundity. Masters over slaves, men over women, lions over crows: At every turn, the scriptures enumerate the rank of things. But for terrifying moments, the merest of heartbeats, it is unequal in her eyes as well."

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