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Judging Eye X (Re-read)

Happy Ent

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I've got a poker night friday night so no reading, and we're starting to online shows this week, so thursday may be a late night getting home (only a few hours reading). so presuming I can find it in stock in LA and pick it up at a B&M store on Thursday, I'll probably finish Saturday. My girlfriend is studying for her last finals, so we'll probably go to a coffee shop and I will happily read for hours until I finish it, so I expect I'll finish it on Saturday.

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Incariol is a Quya, I got that wrong before. I thought he was just a standard Ishroi and that they could all do that. But no, he’s as good as the Nonmen get.

Have we seen this spell before? When Incariol zaps Srancs in the volcano room, there are parabolas bouncing from Sranc to Sranc. That’s awesome. I know we’ve had parabolas before, but I don’t think it’s been described as a chain reaction.

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I might be wrong but I think we might have seen something similar in Conphas battle against the Scylvendie, only the sorcerers who used the chain reaction salted because it eventually hit a chorae bearer and everything went to salt.

Incariol is indeed Quya.

I'm going to post the last of my thoughts on chorae tonight before I crack open WLW. Can't let those notes go to waste. :-p

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to get through things quickly:

Mimara looks at the chorae and it is a nasty piece of work. It is abyssal, anathema, the bane of her heart's sole desire. I think the bane of her heart part refers to her desire to learn sorcery, but I would not be surprised to see a double meaning there, that her heart itself is rebelling at the chorae and what it does.

note this and compare it to what Kelmomas does before the statue of Ajokli

And yet she stares and stares, like a boy gazing at some remarkable bug.
So with that line I think we're supposed to complete the comparison, and that like the bug sacrificed to Ajokli, this chorae is in a sense sacrificed to the God, and it's this bit of business that binds Mimara to the diety.

I think Mimara has something of a conflict with the Chorae, they have perhaps a battle here. The chorae is fighting her as she opens the judging eye and focuses on it. She hears voices, thinks of spiders skittering, thinks of the chorae mortifying her flesh in purification like whips and nails might. This was one source of my comment suggesting that chorae are inherently purifying, that they cleanse the mark away. The counter to this is the above mention that the chorae itself has a foul and wretched mark indicating it's sorcerous construct. But it is still significant that Bakker directly describes the chorae as potentially purifying and directly compares it to nails (which have a particularly christian connotation) and the whips of scourging (which has a more catholic connotation, and is not quite so limited to invoking only a christian mythos for the reader). If I were inclined to find proofs of my theories anywhere and everywhere I would obsess on this passage and try to transmute it into proof that Mimara is the true latter-latter prophet, the heir to Sejenus. But I am not so inclined.

So when Mimara begins to focus on it, then the suffering and pain begin. This, again can be interpreted several ways, the obvious interrpretation is that the judging eye is sensing the morality of the topos slave chamber they are currently in. Another explanation might suggest Mimara's judging eye is seeing the history of that particular chorae. I'm quite inclined to this interpretation because of the soon to follow sentance, "the clubs begin falling, and her body rebels down to its rooted bowel, gagging at memories of salt. Emptiness itself..." With obviously, the memories of salt phrase leading me to this conclusion that Mimara is getting a very literal 'read' on this particular chorae. Yet another option suggests that she is merely reacting to the morality of the chorae itself, and that in the judging eye it is so horrific it induces all these reactions. But this does not make sense when considering it a tear of God as Mimara soon will always think of it. Yet another options suggests the Chorae is somehow fighting back against what Mimara is about to do it, that the only think that can harm the chorae is the threat of the judging eye which will transfigure the abomination into a tear of god. In this interpretation, one could think of a chorae as something akin to a horcrux. The existence of the animata in the TWLW preview is suggestive of this, that perhaps Chorae have something of a sentience that they are powered by a tormented soul, and this is part of why they are just so horrifically marked. Note that Mimara feels attacked, and it is described in similar terms to anagogic sorcery, using analogy, "throwing hooks about her, a million lacerating stings." which is in keeping withe the style of anagogic magic, I think.

When Mimara passes through the chorae, she gets beyond the contradiction of the chorae itself, "the sanctity and the sin" that she perceives it to be. And after she does this, the chorae is transformed. It begins as a point of light within the nastyness of the chorae. she perhaps experiences the warm and sleepy presence of the God (perhaps she awakens him too?) And the light then grows until it completely consumes the contradicting blackness, Bakker describes that blackness as the false foil. Foil is an interesting literary term to throw in here. A tool of analysis and of authors a foil is a construct used to convey a greater meaning via compariso, or more appropriately in this instance, of contradiction. But the light of certainty burns the contradiction itself to nothing but dust, and at this point Mimara holds no longer a chorae but a tear of God. A transfigured piece for her eyes. she even next thinks, "or to what used to be a chorae."

She then looks to Kosotor and senses his Chorae as 'an outward shining instead of a pinprick of inhaling black.' This is the passage that leads me to believe that if Chorae are meant to act as gates/portals/threshholds rather than just anchors, then Kosotors and Mimara's are two very different breeds of chorae. If Mimara draws one in, then Kosotor's pushes one out. They are perhaps a pair, and perhaps together they will represent very powerful possibilities for Mimara.

and then of course Ginyursis shows up. Ginyursis, probably of a younger generation than Cujo. Notes Cleric as his cousin, probably NilGiccas I think. In any event, Ginyursis seems to have found them despite all his doors and gates having been changed on him. Mimara even perceives him as a gate and as a threshold, and he later rises to protect the gate of the medial screw when he brings up the hellish seal he seems to be part of. I wonder at times if he was condemned and deliberately damned to be part of that gate, or if it's an accident of fate. But I lean towards the side that it was deliberately done, perhaps as a way for him to remember, to volunteer to become a monstrous animata, an afterlife of such pain and intense misery that perhaps it would wipe out some of the memory of the life itself.

They have an interesting conversation and it could be interpreted as the obvious, about the Emwamma, in whose slave chamber they are.

I am VERY resistant to this interpretation. It's too human. It's too human to think that the nonmen would be talking about US, about ourselves, about humankind. It is exactly what we are expected to think, it is exactly the sort of thought trap that Bakker relishes. I think these two are talking about the Inchoroi.

So in that interpretation we have:

"The inchoroi called us false."

"They are children who can never grow, they could be no different." If the INchoroi are immortal they will never grow, mortality forces growth on a person. And the Inchoroi's lusts could be considered childish from the perspective of the Cunuroi who examine such noble and high pursuits of philosophy, theology, the arts etc. While the inchoroi examine the bodily pursuits. Setting these up in a binary comparison is classic religion 101. Hedonism bad, asceticism good. but I'm very resistent to believing that we'll continue to think of the Inchoroi as pure evil, I think we will be asked to reconsider why we consider the purely mental so edifying while trying to downgrade the purely physical. Certainly the inchoroi are evil in their single minded pursuit of pleasure, but perhaps we will discover the Cunuroi are every bit as evil in their single minded pursuits (also same for the Dunyain).

In fact, if you continue to read the exchange, you could postulate that the Cunuroi (heh, roi, kings, lol). were punished with the inchoroi, perhaps they even summoned or created the inchoroi so they could experience the pleasure principle, examine and study it. That they're the makers of their own downfall seems inevitable.

Note that Ginyursis says:

"I loved [the inchoroi]. I loved them so much." I do not think that makes any sense if talking about the Emwamma. the ancient parts of my mind are going bonkers saying, of course they would love us, we're so loveable. But the inchoroi may have brought the Cunuroi love for the very first time. They may have never experienced it before. It's also one of the things Kellhus seems to lack, but that's a thread I'm not equipped to pursue at the moment.


They betrayed

Damnation cousin, how could we forget?

I wonder if the cunuroi came to earwa and in a sense forgot all about damnation. the Inchoroi brought them a reminder. But this is all so loaded it is impossible to analyze. Forgetting has so much significance when associated with cunuroi. It just completely opens up a colossal can of interpretive worms.

And Cleric closes with a very enigmatic phrase, "Not I. I have never forgotten." No we have an interrpretive-can-of-worms^2 and I say fuck it, I'm going to go read WLW.

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okay one last bit. If Akka is The Whore's avatar in the world, if he is acting in her agency, and she is conditioning his path, then I think she already knows of the Dunyain and that the Dunyain are in fact hers and hers alone. Perhaps the Whore of all the Gods, can see and understand the NoGod and Inchoroi. Because she in particular is suited to understand what the No God means for the fate of Humankind and the fate of the world. If that is the case, then I think sending the Dunyain to Ishual with their mission of mastering mind and body and soul is a card that the whore played many thousands of years ago. They are her trump card her ace in the hole. and she is sending Akka to fetch them, to get the pawn across the board and get the queen on the board. (ooh mixed gaming metaphors wee!) the whore always rolls a twenty for herself and dunyain are pieces that pretty much always roll a twenty as well. I don't think Akka is going to destroy the Dunyain, I think he's going to recruit a new fellowship there. mwahaha.

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A bit of a curious absence of Ammazon reviews for the book sofar, most new fantasy releases have quite a few reviews within the first two weeks of release. I wonder if this might suggest disappointing US sales.

Happy Ent, to respond to your question, there is only one hardcover and that is the US edition that is out now.

It is the same binding as previous volumes. Good quality if you ask me, much better than UK hardcovers.

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it might suggest the complete bizarreness of the book being released on a Thursday not on a Tuesday, on the book not being at Barnes and Noble until Saturday. It hasn't been available two weeks yet, only five days, only three days if you count from when it showed up at BN.

iirc, the US hardcover is folded and glued, it's not deckle edged, it's clean cut. The binding seems appropriately robust for such a thick book (heavier paper, I guess, despite being about 590 pages long, it's as thick as the american HC of Clash of Kings, I think).

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While everyone else is away discussing WLW I have reread parts of TTT and TJE. And actually found something interesting I haven't seen discussed before. It's in TTT but has a clear bearing on Kelmomas in TJE.

Of course, possibly WLW shines some more light on this, I don't know. If so I'd appreciate if noone says anything about it at all. Thank you. :)

Anyway, it's a passage where Esmi reflects on "The Kelmariad", the Saga describing the history of Anasûrimbor Celmomas II:

The birth of Celmomas II had been as ill-starred as any birth could be: he was the twin of a stillborn brother, named Huörmomas. The line,

His rosy wail could not stir his brother's blue slumber,

made her restless with thoughts of Serwë and Moënghus. And the way the poet used this macabre image to explain the High King's flint-hearted brilliance made her inexplicably anxious. Huörmomas, the poet insisted, ever stalked his brother's side, chilling his heart even as he quickened his intellect:

Grim kinsman, frosting the breath of his every counsel.

Dark reflection! Even the Knight-Chieftains

bundle their cloaks

When they catch your glint in their Lord's eye.

So - Kelmomas and Celmomas have almost exactly the same names, Celmomas II was also a twin with a dead brother (with a vaguely similar name), and most important, he also seems to have carried his dead brother's more or less evil soul/persona/voice within him.

Furthermore, I find it interesting that this passage made Esmi "inexplicably anxious".

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A very good catch. Clearly the name Kelmomas immediately reminds us of the ancient Anasurimbor king who sent for the first Great Ordeal, but this is a very interesting addition. Clearly Kelmomas is up to no good and a source of menace, which I guess grows in WLW. This could strengthen the idea that it is his murdered twin brother whose voice speaks to him, but again, that voice seems so much more mature.

Clearly there are links between the two, but how they are connected in a more precise way is unclear. I still feel as though Kelmomas is a sort of Anti-Christ in this story, the one who might actually bring his father down somehow, whoe we know he hates beyond anything, but who he fears, because the Strength burns brightest in him.

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This could strengthen the idea that it is his murdered twin brother whose voice speaks to him, but again, that voice seems so much more mature.

Yes. AFAIK the jury is still out on this (unless WLW has something to say), but personally I'm convinced it's his twin brother, due to the "Why didn't you kill me earlier?" remark.

Also, I went back and tried to dig for info about Celmomas II's father from the TTT Appendix, to look for possible parallells to Kellhus, but came up completely blank. Not even a name.

However, there are some fresh possibilities for some solid crackpottery here.

I'll start with postulating that this double soul thing is a Nonman phenomenon, that occurs some (or most) of the time Nonman twins are born. Thus both the Cel II and the Kel cases would be explained by the traces of Nonman blood in the Anasûrimbors.

This would imply that twin births would have been ridiculously rare among Nonmen though (but they could very well be more common among humans). Otherwise this most probably would be a known phenomenon, which it doesn't seem to be.

Say also that someone born like this is of the Few - it would make complete sense that a Sorcerer with two souls can handle two inutterals with ease.

Which leads to two immediate crackpot conclusions.

First, the legendary Su'juroit had a dead twin sibling.

Second, Kel gets even more scary, as he could be more than a match for Kellhus, sorcery-wise (provided of course that he is of the Few. I'm fairly certain he is, but I need to check this with the book).

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Kelmomas is of the few.

I think all twins are just messed up in Scott's world becuase of souls leaking through the outside thing. Imagine it's like Kell and Serwe on the circumfix, but all the time, their souls are so close together they might as well be one.

Psatma is also a twin, btw, and is also a messed up character. :-p

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