It is currently Sun Dec 15, 2019 2:34 am

All times are UTC




Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 88 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Author Message
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 2:58 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2009 5:05 am
Posts: 21
You make some excellent points here, and I also share your concern for exactly what the Bahro did with the tablet. However, you have continuously been putting the words "don't use the Art" in our mouths, and I don't know of anyone who's said them. While that's one perfectly efficacious interpretation of the title of the last game, my position has never gone that far and so I must decline to be lumped with that position. What IS in fact a simplification is the assertion that there's only a binary choice before us: to abandon the Art or to have unregulated use of writing and ages. That isn't the case. While you have a good point about the difficulty about teaching values related to tolerance, equality, and humility, to say it's all or nothing would be like giving up or avoiding the problem.

As far as "power" goes, yes, power exists, I can see that from my very computer screen. What we're talking about is what amounts to a doomsday device for a species; while power exists, perhaps we should prevent any individual from having the potential for absolute power? That's not impossible. The U.S. has been policing that kind of thing, although there has been a bit of hypocrisy therein considering that they have hundreds of the things no one else may have.

As for godhood, remember that I don't think age-writing makes you a god either; the problem presented has always been that some might become corrupt to decide that they're tantamount to gods once they decide they caused the existence of a universe and all its inhabitants, and make immoral decisions based on that hubris. To reject hubris and to be wary of it is not "self-hating"; it's self-aware. We must always be cognizant of the seed of violence that exists within the human "soul". I also repeat the difference between building a house, having a child, and creating a universe. The sheer ontological scope of the accomplishment is staggering, which means One, that it's an incredulous explanation for what happens when you write in a book with a special ink and a certain page; and Two, that this implausible explanation, when accepted, is more than enough to legitimate dictatorial rule.

But as far as the lessons you recommend we teach, we're talking about the same thing. The equality/rights/tolerance lesson is in fact what I mean by humility, and I think it's largely what Yeesha meant as well; not piety to some deity.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 8:42 am 
Ro'Mallinson wrote:
However, you have continuously been putting the words "don't use the Art" in our mouths, and I don't know of anyone who's said them. While that's one perfectly efficacious interpretation of the title of the last game, my position has never gone that far and so I must decline to be lumped with that position.


Ro'Mallinson wrote:
perhaps we should prevent any individual from having the potential for absolute power?


I don't know what else the Art is, if you're talking about "sheer ontological scope" and so on. Having a Book which can make changes to the very world that people live on (let's not even talk about possibly having created it, and them) is as close to absolute power, to the inhabitants of that world, as makes no difference. Much bigger than any bomb. If people can't be trusted with it, as you seem to be saying, then it seems that no regulation will be sufficient. (Even if we're in charge, we're people too, and I don't know that I can trust you and vice versa.) Not using the Art is the only alternative, the only way to "prevent any individual from having the potential for absolute power." You may not say it, and you may not want to be saying it, but it's implicit in your argument and I believe you should come to terms with that.

Oh, I'm sure you could come up with some elaborate and oppressive system whereby new Books are taken from the Writers as soon as they are completed and stored in a special vault, and to use them you would have to fill in six forms and be accompanied at all times by suited Maintainers with billyclubs. Huge effort and expenditure of resources, but that's the only way you could be sure to stop Writers making changes to their Books, or people going to Ages and claiming to be gods. And still, someone would slip through, someone would break the system simply because that's what humans do, and another Age would be abused and another people would be enslaved and it would all start again. The D'ni had regulation. They made being a Writer as hard as it could be. (I'm convinced that the whole thing with the special paper and the special ink was part of it. Words don't care what they're written in or on, and it's the language and the mind that does the trick.) And still the canker invaded the system and became a part of it.

You either trust people with this, or you don't. If you don't, then the only workable alternative is, I'm afraid, to keep it from them. Which of course means that you think you can be trusted with it, and there might be some who would disagree. I mean, you're a person. If you knew the Art, then you would be subject to the same temptations. "Hmm...maybe I'm wrong...Wow, broke again, maybe I could Write an Age with some jewels in it and sell them...ooh, s/he's nice, I wonder if s/he would be impressed if I told him/her..."

I'm not against regulation, by any means. We've all seen what happens when regulations get thrown out of the window. (And we've also seen what happens when fear and mistrust cause a proliferation of unnecessary, intrusive and wasteful regulations.) We'll need Maintainers and such. But the best regulation is self-regulation, and the only way to get that is to teach Writers responsibility; to teach them that no, secondary creation does not confer or imply superiority. "You made an Age. Well done. If it's uninhabited, it's yours, don't mess it up. If it's got people, it's theirs, either leave it alone or go there as another ordinary person and deal with them as equals. You're responsible for this. We're trusting you. Don't let us down."

And in order to do that, we have to decide once and for all that the Art is something we can use, that we are capable of being trusted with it, and with the (possible) truth about it. Not just some of us. Not just thee and me and I'm not sure about thee. Everyone.

Yeesha did not talk about hubris (not surprising, since she didn't know Greek); she talked about pride. She talked about seeking Leastness (not lessness), she talked about finding solace in smallness, she talked about staying in the dark because light was bad. She did not once mention equality or tolerance or anything like them. She talked about punishment, she talked about atonement, she talked about burdens--all quasi-religious language of self-abasement, alternating with grandiose claims ("only I can do this" and so on). Her very obsession with Leastness is itself a form of pride ("no-one is more humble than I am! NO-ONE!!!"). It worries me that so many explorers (I'm not saying necessarily you, but some do) seem to hang on her every word and regard her as an infallible source of wisdom, when to me she's the classic unreliable narrator.

Humility is placing yourself last. Equality is placing yourself on a level. The two concepts couldn't be more different.


Top
  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 6:26 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2009 5:05 am
Posts: 21
Zander, I'll clarify again that the "absolute power" I was describing was the tablet, not the Art. Yes, I stipulate that we should be careful when using the Art and educate our young in values before giving them the skillset to write Ages; I was specifically equating the tablet with the concept of "absolute power", albeit over a single species. The "sheer ontological scope" I describe is an attempted reductio ad absurdum (reduction to the absurd) of the Creation school of thought, not my description of the Art. There is no such implicit message in my argument for me to come to terms with; we've been having two separate debates on this thread, you'll notice, and you've accidentally conflated them.

Now remember, while the D'Ni had regulation, their downfall was completely tangential to it: the two madmen who committed genocide of the entire citizenry of the cavern and its Ages was not based on any superiority complex over an inferior race. During the D'Ni empire, there's every indication of successful resistance to that kind of lording-over in Age-writing, although we do admonish them for their civil problems, namely for their caste system.

Now, think of science: while individual people can at some times become tempted to falsify reports to make their grants go through, or slip in false evidence to make their careers, there's an intricate system of confirmation, fact-checking, and diversification of process. It's not an all-or-nothing system whereby it's a free-for-all or we should remain in the dark ages. There's nothing wrong with having an intricate regulation system to prevent injustice or fraud. Nor does regulation over a process imply a "thee and me" elitism.

While Yeesha didn't use the same exact words as I'm using, I think I've interpreted her meaning pretty well. When she described finding "smallness" and "leastness", I'm not convinced she was advocating that for everyone: she was describing her journey down into the cavern, and her emotional turmoil before and after meeting the Bahro. Burdens were her description of herself and her father, and yes, I admit, the extent to which she emphasized those burdens makes it sound like she was pushing the idea of her being a mesiah-like martyr, and for the extent of this imagery in her voice I still take her with a grain of salt. I think you'll find that more of us than you give credit for taste that salt, and that is the source of the tension in Myst 5: one begins to struggle with whom to trust, as Yeesha's messages begin to trouble us as to her character; she seems to have a bit of Achenar in her, in fact. Nevertheless, even if she's become too emotional and too judgemental (which I personally think is the case), her heart was still in the right place, and so we trust not her hands with this weapon, but her voice to cast it away. As for us, the entire purpose of her Uru project was for regular people to both learn this new account of D'Ni histor and culture, and form a new understanding of how a civilisation can rot if it does not have values that prevent this kind of social stratification and injustice.

Ultimately, you pooh-pooh the concept of humility beyond its definition: it is not to place oneself last, but to remember not to place oneself first.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 9:50 pm 
Ro'Mallinson wrote:
Zander, I'll clarify again that the "absolute power" I was describing was the tablet, not the Art. Yes, I stipulate that we should be careful when using the Art and educate our young in values before giving them the skillset to write Ages; I was specifically equating the tablet with the concept of "absolute power", albeit over a single species. The "sheer ontological scope" I describe is an attempted reductio ad absurdum (reduction to the absurd) of the Creation school of thought, not my description of the Art. There is no such implicit message in my argument for me to come to terms with; we've been having two separate debates on this thread, you'll notice, and you've accidentally conflated them.


Not accidentally. My point is that the argument that applies to one form of "absolute power" must perforce be applied to any and all other forms of "absolute power." If the Tablet cannot be used, because it represents absolute power over a species, then how can you possibly justify using the Art, which confers absolute power over a world? If one must be avoided, then so must the other. This is something we like to slide over, because using the Art is fun, but it does follow logically from the point you have been making regarding the Tablet. If you truly believe that absolute power cannot be allowed to remain in the hands of a fallible human, then you cannot advocate the use of the Art.

Personally, I wouldn't touch the Tablet with a ten-foot pole even if I believed in it, but I certainly would use the Art. Which means I cannot in conscience believe that absolute power can never be entrusted to a human.

Ro'Mallinson wrote:
Now remember, while the D'Ni had regulation, their downfall was completely tangential to it: the two madmen who committed genocide of the entire citizenry of the cavern and its Ages was not based on any superiority complex over an inferior race. During the D'Ni empire, there's every indication of successful resistance to that kind of lording-over in Age-writing, although we do admonish them for their civil problems, namely for their caste system.


This is another point that I think some of us tend to pass over, and thank you for making it for me. Pride did not cause the Fall, though it certainly went before it as in the proverb. But the motivations that caused it were indeed partly grounded in a superiority complex: Veovis opposed contact with the surface dwellers because they were "inferior," hated Ti'ana because (I believe) she threatened that comforting assumption, and came to hate D'ni because they punished him for, as he saw it, trying to protect them from the outside influence.

I'm not sure what indications you see of resistance among the D'ni to what you've called hegemonic thinking. Certainly there were none in the history of D'ni and its Ages as presented to us by Yeesha. Some of the kings whose histories the DRC translated may have made gestures in that direction, but they remained kings, and their influence did not last.

Ro'Mallinson wrote:
Now, think of science: while individual people can at some times become tempted to falsify reports to make their grants go through, or slip in false evidence to make their careers, there's an intricate system of confirmation, fact-checking, and diversification of process. It's not an all-or-nothing system whereby it's a free-for-all or we should remain in the dark ages. There's nothing wrong with having an intricate regulation system to prevent injustice or fraud. Nor does regulation over a process imply a "thee and me" elitism.


Doesn't it? Who imposes and enforces the regulations? Who monitors them? Regulation implies hierarchy by its very nature, implies a division between the regulators and the regulated. By definition the regulated can't be trusted to make their own rules and abide by them (or they wouldn't have to be regulated), but the regulators apparently can. And I have yet to see a system of regulation that is in any way effective at preventing injustice and fraud. Limiting, maybe; preventing, no.

Ro'Mallinson wrote:
While Yeesha didn't use the same exact words as I'm using, I think I've interpreted her meaning pretty well. When she described finding "smallness" and "leastness", I'm not convinced she was advocating that for everyone: she was describing her journey down into the cavern, and her emotional turmoil before and after meeting the Bahro. Burdens were her description of herself and her father, and yes, I admit, the extent to which she emphasized those burdens makes it sound like she was pushing the idea of her being a mesiah-like martyr, and for the extent of this imagery in her voice I still take her with a grain of salt. I think you'll find that more of us than you give credit for taste that salt, and that is the source of the tension in Myst 5: one begins to struggle with whom to trust, as Yeesha's messages begin to trouble us as to her character; she seems to have a bit of Achenar in her, in fact. Nevertheless, even if she's become too emotional and too judgemental (which I personally think is the case), her heart was still in the right place, and so we trust not her hands with this weapon, but her voice to cast it away. As for us, the entire purpose of her Uru project was for regular people to both learn this new account of D'Ni histor and culture, and form a new understanding of how a civilisation can rot if it does not have values that prevent this kind of social stratification and injustice.

Ultimately, you pooh-pooh the concept of humility beyond its definition: it is not to place oneself last, but to remember not to place oneself first.


I'm not the only one to question Yeesha's motives, or her sanity, or even the most extreme sceptic. She is certainly extremely judgmental and emotional, and those two qualities are explosive when mixed. When she talked about "leastness" and "solace in smallness" and "darkness" she was in fact talking about the D'ni when they left Garternay, and it's clear that she believes this was an ideal that they aimed for and from which they fell away when they began to use the power of the Art again. But the thing about "leastness" is that it implies "greaterness." The thing about smallness is that it implies bigness. And the thing about darkness is you fall over a lot.

Humility is a relative term that only applies in a hierarchy where inequality is the rule. It only makes sense if the alternative is "pride" in the sense in which Yeesha used the word. It is meaningless outside the context of "first" and "last." It has nothing to do with equality. Humility does not look you in the eye; it bows its head and waits to be commanded. And when Yeesha talks about "leastness," that is--unmistakably, I would have thought--what she means.


Top
  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 7:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2009 5:05 am
Posts: 21
Well when you advocate the tablet being morally equivolent to the Art, and say there's either letting it be or letting none have either, you again forget that the option of regulation stands. But whereas regulating the Art ensures that no one uses control over worlds for evil, the principle of freedom of choice by definition precludes there being any such thing as a good use of the tablet; and so the tablet is innately a bad thing to have, whereas the Art can either be a tool or a weapon, and so they remain separate issues.

As for the D'Ni sentiments towards the "surface dwellers" of their age (i.e. us), therein they were merely xenophobic; so nor is there any indication that they would seek to conquer the world above, but were content to leave be and live in their own realm. Thank you though, for reminding me about the tense sentiments towards other Earthlings.

Third, regulation doesn't have to imply hierarchy; when you try to publish a paper, you're PEER-reviewed, criticised by others without a pyramid-shape structure, to prevent either fraud, mistake, or failure.

And last, the route of the word humility is humble; and humble is not a synonym of submissive, nor subservient, nor obsequious, nor suppressed. There is no mistake in this interpretation: humility is not (and certainly not obviously and "unmistakably") to accept domination of some "greater". [/i]


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 10:37 pm 
I could remind you at this point that we have absolutely no idea what the tablet means to the bahro. Your theory that it removes their freedom of action is simply that, a theory, and all your logic is built on that theory. We have no evidence of enslavement beyond hearsay and inference from hearsay. My own theory is that it may have been a religious artifact which the D'ni may have used to keep them subservient by threatening to destroy it. Perhaps they had a taboo which forbade them to handle it themselves unless it was given to them.

On the other hand, we have definite evidence of the power of the Art to change, if not directly create, worlds, which is a perfectly valid way of removing people's freedom of choice.

The rest of this is quibbling over the definitions of words. Peer-reviewing is not what I understand by "regulation," except possibly in the sense of a sort of extended self-regulation, and in any case the principles they use in peer-reviewing are not self-generated, but imposed by the educational system; in other words, the rules are made by teachers and imposed on the rank and file, who then continue to impose them on each other as well as on those of lower degree. The peers don't get to make up their own methodologies.

And if you want to get technical, the root of the words "humble" and "humility" is the Latin humilis, which comes from humus, earth or dirt, and means "low, lowly, small, slight, mean, insignificant, base." (I'm a writer. Words are my thing.) If you don't see the implied comparison to a greater, higher, larger, more significant, or nobler entity in that definition, or the obvious connotation of subservience and submissiveness in that view of oneself, then I fear we'll never reach a meeting of minds. Which, if necessary, I can live with. I have no objection to a plurality of views. But "humble" and "equal" will never be synonyms in English as I understand it.


Top
  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 12:43 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 3:54 am
Posts: 1816
Location: Right behind you.
There are some big posts in this thread, and it's already 5 pages long, so I'm going to be lazy and reply just based off the title.

The answer to the question is this: all we know about the Art and linking is what they are and what they do. We have been provided with absolutely no relevant information as to how they function. It's still extremely unclear as to how the D'ni (or their ancestors from Garternay) were even able to pull it off to begin with. We know the books and the ink were "special" and made from "special ingredients", one of them being some extract of a beetle, however there is no further explanation from that point. The whole idea comes across as extremely mystical, and yet we know there was some level of scientific precision to the process and that the D'ni didn't view it as magic whatsoever. Even still, the entire idea is so secretive and rather impossible that it's reminiscent of alchemy.

Where did the beetles come from? Were they the same beetles that the people of Garternay used? Why are books the mode of transportation? Why not a specially formulated potion, or perhaps magical shoes? What were the books themselves made of?

If one approaches the whole problem from a purely scientific perspective, all we can determine is that the books and ink (and their raw components) must have some sort of property that allows them to exploit quantum mechanics. But that still doesn't explain why writing in a book made of special materials will result in a different yet controllable outcome every single time. The more you think about it, the less sense it makes.

Now, back when Cyan first made Myst and Riven, these questions were totally irrelevant-- it was a strange, foreign world populated with foreign rules. But upon introducing Uru into a dynamic, real world complete with a modern-day archeological restoration, suddenly all these problems become apparent. It's a clash of realities and it doesn't work, and there are some differences between the two genres that just can't be reconciled.

So the answer to the question of whether or not worlds are created when a link is written is really not the one we should be looking for... The question we should be asking is, "how does linking work?" Because if we can answer the latter question, we can answer the former.

_________________
I miss my old signature.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 5:01 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2009 5:05 am
Posts: 21
Well there's a difference between "hearsay" and induction: my conclusions were largely based off of the characters' reaction in the different end scenarios. First, it wouldn't be a big screaming deal to Escher at all if this was just the Bahro's favourite stone; nor would he go into maniacal laughter and start issuing orders to the Bahro, whom he began to refer to as his new servants, between delighted bouts of delighted cackling. Second, the moment the tablet is released the Bahro are suddenly able to fly; the interpretation here is apparently that the tablet somehow inhibited their physical abilities, and perhaps some of their linking abilities as well. While other interpretations are arguable, it isn't so obvious a matter that this interpretation ought to be responded to with such guffaws. Words such as "obvious" are more often than not used as insults and not truly meant.

As for the science analogy, while it's true that the scientific method is not democratic and not up for debate, its use and efficacy in its current form is self-evidently valid with enough training in critical thinking, and not some sort of clique institution.

Words are my thing too. And one thing I've learned in studying the etymology of words and their ever-evolving ever-changing connotations, meanings, and contexts, is that after a few hundred years, the meaning of the word has changed, and if one attempts to use current definitions to interpret ancient texts (or vice-versa) one will accidentally (or deliberately) equivocate. I once had a debate with a Christian who was arguing that I can't possibly use logic to debate the non-existence of God, since "in the beginning, there was a word, and the word was with God, and the word was God," and the word for "word" in Latin is "logos", which also means "logic" (and four other things), which means that God IS logic, and so I was apparently bootstrapping. These mistakes happen all the time, and therefore the etymology of a word ought to only be regarded as academically interesting, and not used to further define that word as it currently exists.

Calam: intriguing points, and it almost makes me think of old first-nations traditions. When Europeans first landed here, and contracted local diseases, the natives used bizarre rituals they said would heal the sailors. The sailors were dubious, but some of those rituals actually worked. We now know it's because they utilised Vitamin-C in one of their concoctions during part of their ritual, without knowing what Vitamin-C was, and the vitamin actually cured the disease. But they surely had numerous details in that ritual that had no meaning; all they knew, from repetition, was that if you do that exact thing, people got better. It might be the same with the Art: Zander brought up intriguing theories that perhaps the ink and certain other details are meaningless. We honestly don't know, but it was the first time I'd considered it. Yeesha made the biggest breakthrough when she learned that books weren't even necessary, which was arguably already known by the Bahro, and perhaps Catherine. As for how it works... scientifically, I have no idea; philosophically, we can discourse, but with mystery still remaining.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 8:17 am 
The royal throne of England used to contain (I don't know if it still does) an object called the Stone of Scone, which was a flat stone that all the kings of Scotland used to sit on to be crowned. England's capture of that stone symbolically represented her conquest of Scotland. The Tablet could be something like that. Symbols may be more important to the bahro even than they were to the fourteenth-century Scots.

You're inferring an awful lot. "Suddenly the bahro could fly"? We hadn't seen them fly before, and it was indeed very impressive, but that doesn't mean they couldn't. However, I am genuinely not "guffawing," and I don't see where I've given that impression. I am neither amused by nor contemptuous of your ideas, I'm just perplexed as to where you see justification for them when none of the arguments you've advanced have seemed to me to be based in anything substantive.

So...you quote the root of a word to support your argument, I go to my dictionary and quote the actual derivation to support mine, and then it's
Ro'Mallinson wrote:
one thing I've learned in studying the etymology of words and their ever-evolving ever-changing connotations, meanings, and contexts, is that after a few hundred years, the meaning of the word has changed, and if one attempts to use current definitions to interpret ancient texts (or vice-versa) one will accidentally (or deliberately) equivocate
...so, in other words, the root of the word isn't important any more?

That seems like moving the goalposts to me. And I'm not going to shift on the meaning of "humble." There are words to describe a relationship of equality. This is not one of them. All my dictionaries bear me out.

To be "humbled" is to be put in an inferior position.

To "humble oneself before the Lord" is not to approach him as an equal.

To say "welcome to my humble abode" is to say, in effect, "my house is not as nice as yours." It's self-deprecation.

And expletive' Uriah Heep, with his constant harping on how "umble" he was, was pretending to abase himself, not to imply that he was anybody's equal.

And, to get away from the side issue, equality is not (as far as I can gather from a fairly careful study of her own words and actions) Yeesha's ideal. Leastness, a continual self-denial in an effort to avoid pride, is. Her goal, as she expressed it, was to refuse, not just absolute power, not just "bad" power, but all power.

Hi Calam. I don't blame you.:lol:

To essay an answer to your questions: from my point of view, which isn't scientific, a book is a vehicle for words, and the ideas they encapsulate, and that's all it is. It makes a pattern of ideas easily assimilable, shows the mind a way to go. That's why I think the whole business about the special materials is a blind, because ideas don't care what ink they're written in. The fact that it's possible to train the mind to conceptualise the mechanism for linking (Yeesha has got to the point where she doesn't use bahro skin or any other mechanical aid that we know of, so I think it's safe to assume she's doing it with her brain) demonstrates more clearly than anything else I can think of that it's the idea, the thought, expressed in the word and the language, that's important, not any physical mechanism.


Top
  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 5:23 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2006 4:45 pm
Posts: 310
Location: berlin, germany
Quote:
I'm just perplexed as to where you see justification for them when none of the arguments you've advanced have seemed to me to be based in anything substantive.


Same could work for your arguments in the view of some people, Zander. I'm sure you know that every person who strongly believes in something will defend that belief even to the degree where the arguments make no more sense or get personal (no offense to both of you).

Quote:
Her goal, as she expressed it, was to refuse, not just absolute power, not just "bad" power, but all power.


That's actually quite ironic because she claims to have such great powers. To refuse all power she'd had to kill herself. :P

Quote:
demonstrates more clearly than anything else I can think of that it's the idea, the thought, expressed in the word and the language, that's important, not any physical mechanism.


That reminds me of Terry Pratchett's "Hogfather" where everything the wizards thought of became real (like the gnome stealing your falling hair *g*). It's as good an approach to what the Art is, as any other might be.

Who knows what the Art was like in Garternay? Maybe it used to be a "wild power" that was put under control by saying: You need this kind of paper, this kind of ink, these laws (that have been extended over the centuries) and this language (that changed with the split into Tehranee and D'ni). Maybe Yeesha re-discovered some of that "wild, old power" and used it?

P.S.: In some way I think we should ask ourselves if this isn't a question of mechanics and physics but of human's ideas and beliefs...

_________________
Whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open.

Hitana Jadurian (GW)


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 6:52 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2009 5:05 am
Posts: 21
I think you accidentally equivocated there. The "root" of a word is the simple version of it, like "fly" is the route of "flying", and not the ancient origin of the word. While one refreshes your mind to the meaning of the word, the other takes the word of out today's context. Now, while to BE humbled is to be placed in an inferior position, that's understandable, since the state of being humble is better done by oneself; to humble someone else is a different idea altogether, that implies that someone has decided you need to be taken down a peg. The next example you use is to be humbled by one's god, which isn't a fair context in comparison either, since one's obviously going to be in an inferior position to one's deity. "Welcome to my humble abode" has never meant "my house sucks and I am unworthy"; it's a display of one's sincerity, to show you're not one of those one-upmanship types of neighbours. Uriah was insincere in his pretend-humility, going to the extreme to fool everyone with fake obsequiousness.

Yeesha never declared that all power was to be washed away from one's life; you blame me of inferring, and yet this is the kind of inferring that religious sects make of their bibles to justify whatever they want. Yeesha in fact declares herself the king of the expletive, The Grower; it doesn't sound at all like she has a philosophy of casting away all power. Her journey of exploring "Leastness", then, must rather be a casting-off of pride in order to be worthy of power.

As to the tensions in here, I don't claim you're being openly rude, just that it's unhelpful to glumly take this very complicated discussion to be a matter of obviousness; your comments had become progressively more annoyed-sounding as I question the minutae of linking and the tablet, as though it's irritating that I just don't get it. We'll start on a clean slate, and try to keep things as light-hearted as possible.

Now you're right, I've been inferring; I'm making inferences. While there's no proof regarding the Bahro's abilities, I am making inferences based on the fact that after two games of seeing them crawl around like monkeys (whether in caves or climbing mountains), the very moment the tablet is in Bahro hands they suddenly extend wings never noticed before, while crying out in joy. Was it that much of a leap?[/i]


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 1:08 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 3:54 am
Posts: 1816
Location: Right behind you.
Quote:
(Yeesha has got to the point where she doesn't use bahro skin or any other mechanical aid that we know of, so I think it's safe to assume she's doing it with her brain)


Did nobody read anything I wrote? It's not "safe to assume" anything about linking because we don't know how it works. We only know that it does. So any hypothesis about its function is inherently based on virtually no solid information. To say she uses her brain to link has as much validity as me suggesting she uses a genie trapped in a bottle to link. Either one could be right, because we know absolutely nothing about it.

Quote:
As to the tensions in here, I don't claim you're being openly rude, just that it's unhelpful to glumly take this very complicated discussion to be a matter of obviousness; your comments had become progressively more annoyed-sounding as I question the minutae of linking and the tablet, as though it's irritating that I just don't get it. We'll start on a clean slate, and try to keep things as light-hearted as possible.


He's getting irritated because of your hair-splitting. You're delving into semantics and "minutiae" (as you put it) and have adopted a rather professorial, educating tone, which really seems out of place here. We are, after all, discussing the fictional elements of a fictional game; some things are only explained because we invent explanations for them. There is no use digging for revelatory, true deeper meaning here because it may not exist at all. I doubt Cyan took the time to work out the quantum and physical mechanics of linking before they decided to create Myst. It's a story-telling device. Debate can be fun, but sometimes the tone used and the attitude presented are simply inappropriate for certain types of discussions.

_________________
I miss my old signature.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 1:52 am 
Calam, you're absolutely right on both counts. I was inferring Yeesha's unaided linking ability, after all, on the basis of an image from a game which I don't take to be valid as evidence in terms of Uru canon. If I don't believe in Esher's bahro hide pashmina, after all, I don't have any grounds for believing in what Yeesha did in the same game.

And as to the more general point, again, yes. The fact that the thing is left as open as it is, allowing us to form our own opinions and debate them, is one of the virtues of the D'niverse. Linking is magic, pure and simple; we can devise our own logical systems for it, impose our own moral strictures on it if we choose, but in the end we are presented with something which (in the game context) simply works.

Ro'Mallinson...believe what you wish, and I shall do the same. Less painful all round.


Top
  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 88 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron