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Topics - TaoHorror

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1
General Misc. / Art
« on: October 24, 2017, 10:04:52 pm »
Art - what is it, what makes "good" art, is there such a thing as "bad" art ( and simply "not" art ) and does Bakker's works qualify as "Art". While I don't think there is "bad" art, but simply something is or isn't art. That said, after reading Abercrombie, I like stealing his term "High Art" to differentiate between good and great art ( if you haven't read The First Law, I'm not using High Art accurately to those books - just like the phrase and am using it for my own purposes here ).

I would say Art is anything that connects with humanity in a poetic way - which is to say connecting at the human sphere/level. As the reality of my humanity, what it is that makes me "human" touching others' humanity either as shared or unique.

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General Misc. / [Twin Peaks Spoilers] Twin Peaks The Return
« on: October 19, 2017, 04:01:02 pm »
Anyone else watch this thing? Appears the chatter about the ending is it's either a Laura Palmer dream or an alternate timeline was created when Cooper saved Laura from her murder for which Judy has leveraged to continue the fight ( i.e. between good and evil ). I'm leaning toward the ladder, but the argument for the former is pretty good.

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The No-God / Your mission, should you choose to accept!
« on: October 11, 2017, 02:24:22 pm »
Ok, here's the deal, I'm sure all of you heard by now Bakker has found Jesus and has sworn off writing anything further not holy scripture. But salvation hasn't squashed that completest part of him and has asked you to write the ending of this story. He's counting on you, the fate of Earwa is in your hands! Don't let him nor the fan base down, how does this thing end?! Or does it? You decide, amaze us with your crafty intellect and creative heart and spell out how you would "finalize" this story.

EDIT: to be clear, this is not guessing how Bakker would end it ... its an exercise to see how we would.

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General Misc. / Favorite Style of Music
« on: September 18, 2017, 02:32:59 pm »
Performing a sociological study on Bakker aficionados, select up to 3

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The Unholy Consult / The Goad
« on: September 17, 2017, 02:01:55 pm »
Kelhus didn't "succumb" to the goad of the IF ( any relevance to IF as acronym, I wonder ) - I take that was because of his "deals" with hell ( i.e. he didn't see himself tormented, so was relieved more than scared ). He asks if he's the first - perhaps ferreting out he's the only one to have attempted an alliance with the 4 Horned, ensuring he won't be betrayed by same? Kelhus had the idea, maybe vetting if any of his "brothers" had come up with a similar approach, you see hell is real, why not try to "tame" it into your control. Given their millennia of dedication to logic/logos/reason, could be the discovery of hell is just a new data point to them.

At first read, I took this as maybe a bit of hubris, maybe even pride that Kelhus would ask this. Upon reflection, seems there was design to the question - perhaps an incomplete question, "am I the first ... to attempt dominating hell". Kelhus may have been surprised The Mutilated took up the cause of The Consult in lieu of going in another direction.

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The Unholy Consult / [TUC Spoiler] The Ciphrang
« on: September 14, 2017, 02:31:13 pm »
TUC Spoiler! DO NOT READ FURTHER IF YOU'VE NOT COMPLETED TUC OR YOU WILL BE DESTROYED

Forgive me if simply a reread would answer my question, but I like posting here so ...

I remember Met looking up to see 3 Ciphrang coming down on him. My memory is unclear what happened with their efforts after that. Met shows up in the Golden Room later to be strangled/hung by Kel - but don't recollect his interaction with the Ciphrang. I thought that was such a cool scene - I was like, "Yes! Kick that arrogant ass's ass!" ... but fizzled out? 3 Ciphrang seems like they could do massive damage to the scranc and bashrag, maybe even take out that dragon.

[EDIT Madness: Subject title.]

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General Misc. / What's your favorite kind of pie?
« on: September 04, 2017, 10:59:22 pm »
Mine is blueberry - love blueberry pie! Peanut Butter, Pumpkin, Apple and Key Lime follow. It's always a good time for pie ( bonus points for movie reference! ). If enough response to this thread, I'll create a poll to determine THE pie of the 2nd Apocalypse.

WARNING: the following tag includes mad spoiler content for TUC ... figured I would get bounced from this forum if I posted in the TUC sub-forum.

(click to show/hide)

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The Unholy Consult / Did The False Sun spoil TUC for you?
« on: August 30, 2017, 10:43:43 pm »
Bakker said The False Sun will "spoil" how we think of The Consult by reading it before TUC. I don't know - seemed like there wasn't much of The Consult left by the end. They lost ( a thousand? ) sorcerers destroying Ishual. Shae "left" when The Mutilated took over. Aurang is quickly slain. Not sure if the 100 skinspies are all Techne creations or some Mangaecca ( who Bakker says have all died off ). Not sure what he was getting at, that The False Sun spoils anything for me. I guess providing some POV from The Consult, it demonstrates the incredible manipulative abilities of The Dunyain to have orchestrated a successful/complete coup. Anyone have better insight into this? Maybe I'm too thick to have "gotten" the spoiler ...

9
Friends, you’ve been so patient – for that, I thank you. More so than any zCon or Bakker Q&A or AMA or stealing Bakker’s notes/computer, you’ve been biting at the bit wondering what I have to say about all of this. Accept my apologies, it is not for design/manipulation/drama I have forestalled until now. I slow … so it took me a few weeks to “experience” the text. And I reread many parts, so much was the joy, delaying the ending to embellish the experience – really take it all in as it were. I made the decision to allow the text to surprise me over the joy I would have had talking with the author in Q&A ( I would have been pissed knowing it all went to salt before reading it – didn’t want the spoilers to rob me of living the story ).

Caveats/emptors/relegations aside, what you’ve been waiting for – the TH brain dump/insight/truth.

My big take away from the work ( maybe not intended by author, I do not know ), even more so than the discovery of the truth of soul ( conceptualized/derived or scientifically ) is the implication of damnation. Damnation is thrown about like candy at Halloween without giving it its due. Damnation ( if it’s a real thing ) is not a simple punishment – it is the mad everlasting cosmic shaft. We have “competing” religions damning each other for “not getting” the truth. Damnation is a so beyond serious accusation and we would do well to really grasp what we’re saying before distributing it. If some of us REALLY believe it to be a true thing, a possibility for our “souls” in the afterlife, then the logic of murdering 74+ million people is not out of bounds, even for your progeny. This state is FOREVER with no apparent way for redemption out of it. I think Bakker is saying if damnation is real, then the gods are evil pure and simple. Unforgiveable perpetual nightmare pain/agony is evil – no human, regardless of wares, deserves such a fate ( not even the likes of Hitler ).

In Earwa, it pushes the point to theological/logical limit with the stain yielding damnation without hope of redemption. In Earth, you can “choose” redemption, but the dicey nature of that with competing religions renders it really the same having the mark – it’s simply unrealistic to “ask” someone who was brought up in a different location/different culture/different parenting/different laws to “wake up” and see the truth of a foreign invading religion. The “realness” of what it is to be a Muslim is identical to the “realness” we Christians feel ( apologies for assuming more Christians than Muslims would be reading this – just reverse what I’m saying if you’re of a non-Christian faith ).

So if you are damned and you know it ( clap your hands! Sorry, couldn’t resist – a nod to our scribbler’s new “life” ) … then ANY path to avoid it is valid and not available for moral scrutiny. The Consult/The Mutilated/The Mangaecca may well be on the “right” path if it does lead them to successfully avoiding damnation. It’s “obvious” to us they’re evil and at best, misguided … but if we really take in what damnation really is, implications, then they aren’t. Is there a better way to remove the stain without killing off so many people? Who knows, but every day you’re trying to figure it out is a day you could die and it’ll be too late.
I think the ( maybe one of several ) overarching “message” of this story is a warning for us to be careful for how we “indulge” in distributing damnation. Without something more than what we’ve experienced ( i.e. thousands of years of communal belief ), it is simply either an awful manipulation by religions or horrible evidence “the god” is not good.

Would’ve been cool to have thrown this by Bakker, but I can wait – the deliciousness of the ending was too good to pass up. Maybe I’m a garden variety sadist, but Bakker knows how to put a smile on my face  :D

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General Misc. / Epic Challenge
« on: July 22, 2017, 08:43:43 pm »
And what more appropriate challenge for us followers of the most damned story ever told ... a bake off!

Listen up! I'm not going to take it easy on you mother fuckers, you hear me? I have the GREATEST chocolate chip cookie recipe in the universe ... that's right, even in Earwa! It soooooo kicks the Inverse Fire's ass. Just looking at it reduces you to a drooling blob of wanted sensation.

Not sure how we can share and have it judged ( maybe Bakker/family can be the judges ), but maybe one of you smarties can think of something. Unless you're too afraid of being destroyed ...

11
General Earwa / Man, this sucks!
« on: July 07, 2017, 11:42:54 pm »
I'm seeing so many TUC threads and I don't even have my book yet! So I can't read any of them - I feel left out. Anyone suffering in the same boat with me?

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Friends! Shot in the dark, any board or RPG gamers here? Along the lines of D&D, board and miniature games is what I'm aiming for ( not video/computer - but feel free to jump in to talk up your favorite League of Legends Champion - mine is Kog Maw before they reworked and ruined him ).

I just discovered a board/miniature game that could well pander to our tastes: Kingdom Death: Monsters. It self proclaims to be "A cooperative nightmare horror game experience." The reviews seem to agree it's "masterful, but disturbing" but went sideways on the pinup line of miniatures ( but I like those too, and Beard would LOVE them, hee hee ). Anyways ... any of you cats hear of this thing? It's wicked expensive and wanted some friendlies to give me the skinny before I go down a rabbit hole of dough to find out it's bullshit or I can't find anyone to play it with. Apparently highly complex/high learning curve that well rewards the players' investment.

I was hunting for more cool miniatures for D&D and came across this stuff - these KD figures are the best I've ever seen. Google search on "kingdom death white knight heavy" and click on images and you'll see some wicked stuff ( Beard - you can search on kingdom death pinup images for the "good" stuff  :D ). Check out the knight with the massive morning star. The detail and creativity of this stuff amazes.

Anyways, any of you play this thing? Is it any good? Worth $1,000+ to get into it? Apparently the core game is out of print, but the dude who created it appears to be raking it in so I'm hoping new printings are released so I can get into it without encroaching on my retirement savings ...


13
Atrocity Tales / False Sun Clarifications request
« on: May 17, 2017, 01:38:46 pm »
Friends!

Ok, for those of you with empathy for the occasionally ( ok, with me, frequently ) confused, have some questions I couldn't ferret out from previous threads easily.

What's the deal with the Mathesis Pin? Shaeönanra teaches Cet’ingira how to make one and Cet goes on to make a bunch which is what is employed to spring the trap on Titirga? Was Cet near them in the room or was that flashback away from the present confrontation? Gets hazy on that with me. Maybe someone can respond with a kind of short order of events if flashbacks are employed? Out of nowhere the text goes to construction of the Pin and then back to Titirga confronting Shae. Cants of Concussion are used to collapse the floor, so what did the Pin and 6 days of singing had to do with anything?

Just one thing - appears it was Tirtiga's arrogance about his power that did him in, yelling at Shae in lieu of protecting himself, but still seems someone of his might would've been able to react before the Cants completed - guess he couldn't walk into the air or float since that magic is based on the turf below you. He did survive the fall requiring they bury him, but still think he could've done something defense or counter attack - maybe the Cants are too quick or something.

The "celebration" between Cet and Inchoroi was some nasty evil shit! The whole thing so ugly, hard to digest. Coupling sex with violence, goading over those you've rolled is mad stuff.


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General Earwa / Parts of the story that really got to you ...
« on: May 07, 2017, 01:59:05 am »
In another thread I mentioned how Bakker's description of Sorcerers using magic and descriptions of dragons jolted me. Imagining men walking into the air with light shining out of their eyes and mouths is creepy horror. What looked like clouds rumbling were scores of dragons dropping out of the skies, snatching up humans without challenge.

There's another that was even more alarming, and as I read up to it, I told myself if he kills his brother, I was going to quit reading - LOL, I know, just a book - but by god, man - it seemed so real when Kelmomas  coaxed Samarmas to the ledge - I was wide eyed, almost traumatized, reading this part. With all of the violence in the books, this one scene really tortured me and I did indeed put the book down when he fell over, just couldn't stomach more at the time. I picked it back up and continued a few days later, but I was genuinely pissed at Bakker on this one ... well, for a little while, I've forgiven him since then, hee hee ( laughing at myself here ). Another "winner" was the Bashrag nailing humans to the wall - maybe it's my evolutionary programming that genital damage is such a fright ( got to ensure I can make more humans ), but I "felt" that one. Makes me wonder if Bakker's real aim is more than to create a great work, but a sociological/psychological experiment on the power of imagination/story on consciousness - how even a work of fiction has the capacity to jar us.

Another scene ( not one that horrified, but was SO well written, I "got" the richness of the character's pathology ) was when Cniur kills Moe and exclaims, "How could you leave me?". The "hate" driving Cniur to kill Moe went beyond Moe's betrayal and manipulation to escape ... Moe didn't take Cniur with him. So cool.

And the Synthese ( exact wording may be off ), "I hate this planet". And the Synthese "seed" being black - man, how does he come up with this stuff? Its one thing to think up crazy shit - another to write it as poetry, as art.

Any others?

15
General Earwa / Here goes ...
« on: April 28, 2017, 05:36:24 pm »
Apologies from the start, haven’t read this forum or posted in a few years. Just found out a month ago TGO was out and finished reading it … which brought me here. I forget quite a few important details like why Moenghus left Ishual and how the Thousand Fold Thought was learned by Kellus – his father shared it or he discovered on his own? Guess I’ll have to reread the books – one of the benefits of having a weak memory, art is a new experience every time you see it  :)

I read this whole thread all at once, not organically as people posted, so I may have missed some nuance to the discussion. I’m going to address several points across threads on this post for efficiency. I haven’t read everything, so apologies for redundancy of covering toiled ground. That said, me thinks the measuring of millimeters to discover what Kellus’s true intention/direction may be misguided ( that or I’m simply not smart enough to see a massive hidden meaning beyond the thousands of supposed clues to the real game being played ). Bakker is a demon, for sure, nothing he’s writing is just to describe the “beautiful” landscape. But a lot of it is to build intrigue, or at least so I think since I read these books at the edge of my seat excitedly crying aloud, “dude, no way!”, frequently.

Not the sharpest knife in the drawer, I look at this simplistically. Kellus was raised with the Logos to achieve a purely self-moving soul ( I think this is Bakker exploring "finding the bottom of the bag" as he addresses in another of his books … whereas in Neuropath that exploration was purely scientific, what would it be like for a sect of humans devoted to accomplishing the same thing via conscious exploration ). He’s sent away from the Dunyain to assassinate his father ( bit lost on the Survivor claiming no awareness of sorcery when Moënghus communicates to the Dunyain to send his son – sorcery – maybe they hushed that up or something ). He learns of the world and of sorcery. For some reason, he’s taken to it – or maybe simply following his directive, not allowing “the world” to deter him. His son, the Survivor, didn’t take to it well at all, quickly dismissing 2,000 years of Dunyain effort and concludes the Absolute is zero, etc. The Survivor does enjoy the benefit of getting an upshot on the status of his soul with The Eye and when he “turns green” he’s like, fuck it, I’m good to join the absolute/god and commits suicide. I detect a mild slap at those of us who believe in religious salvation for if we’re confident we’re saved, no point on risking damnation – if you really are “saved”, best thing that could happen to you is a quick death. I digress …

In short, I think Kellus set out to do what he was told – found out his father was powerful as all get out, potentially with sorcery ( unaware at first the water didn’t take for his pop, not one of the few ) and determined he needed massive power ( an army ) to overwhelm his father and kill him as directed. In the process/journey, he discovers ( again, don’t remember how ) the Thousand Fold Thought for which I took was the threading of the needle to save humanity from extinction. All that we’re seeing in the books is that path. He’s taken up the task to save humanity. Because even though we’re children in his eyes he still feels connected and responsible to protect us like a parent? Because he’s a mad fucker who thought it would be fun to drive an army through hell to defeat an unbeatable enemy to show the planet whose boss? Don’t know for sure, but I don’t identify with evidence brought up in this forum that he’s in cahoots with The Consult – this would be a massive rouse if that’s the case with the smell of cheap writing we see in television shows – to shock for shock’s sake, to surprise by drumming up something completely different with no clue to the viewer what’s coming. Pretty much anyone can do that … create a love story only to see the happy couple who traveled misunderstanding and tragedy together reaching a beautiful connection to only to be hacked up by a madman with a chainsaw in the end. It’s one thing to spin a yarn, quite another to fuck your readers over for the fun of it. I think it's simpler - he sees an "end" and accepts his species evolutionary programming that the show should go on; maybe enjoying some of the hooks ( read: love ) that other humans indulge. That all said, I do see Bakker’s writing teaching us something about the cost of us readers for “loving” or even rooting for Kellus – that loving those we see “higher” than ourselves is risking our own lives as well as our identity/humanity – simply, be careful dear reader in idolizing others. The lesson is to avoid being played and manipulated and for those “leaders” and “heroes” we love, we’re allowing them to use us – often not in our best interests. As long as Kellus is “working” for humanity, cool – if he deviates or violates that trajectory, don’t hesitate to kill him. I think that’s the lesson Kellus is giving Proyas, that his love of Kellus is holding him back, watering his ability to command the GO in Kellus’ absence. The rape was harsh, but maybe felt he had to do the non-man thing of marrying tragedy to an event so it will hit home with Proyas. Or maybe as metaphor as he breaks Proyas’ conditioning, “see what can happen when you put all your chips on one person” and/or just because I’m saving your hind sides from the furnace, doesn’t mean you should trust me.

Don’t like guessing the end of stories, I enjoy being surprised. But appears guessing is what we do here in this forum – so I’m going to take a stab at it. Kellus is having us ( humanity ) take out the Consult to strengthen us to overcome an even worse threat in the future. He sees us as too weak, too immature to endure or flourish. Feuding between each other has not strengthened us enough fend off extinction. An alien showed up to take us out 2,000 years ago and nearly succeeded. They’re still around, but haven’t struck again ( unknown, but I think The Consult was watching us self-destruct in lieu of them taking the risk of full frontal assault ). Seems like a good idea to take them out before the No-god shows up again. But more, it may well toughen us up and evolve. Remember, he sees “beyond” the thousand thoughts – maybe to a worse future than even The Consult poses. The madness arises from the mad effort it’s taken him to vet out so many possibilities, stressing the probability trance. The Consult is not the only threat to humanity – there’s seismic and cosmic events that can do us in. And with nuclear power, we become our own threat as well. Remember, Bakker is a fan of Herbert, and this walk-through hell to empower is straight Herbert philosophy.

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