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Messages - TheSolitaryMG

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The Unholy Consult / Influences on TSA
« on: May 07, 2018, 03:53:14 pm »
Just thinking about updating this topic.  Of course there's Tolkien.  Besides that, here's a few things that came to mind:

Dante - Bakker depicts ciphrang and Ajokli as hungers, eternally eating.  This hearkens back to the very bottom of Dante's hell where the three-headed Satan gnaws on three souls forever: Brutus, Cassius, and Judas.  The passage:

The Emperor of the kingdom dolorous
  From his mid-breast forth issued from the ice;
  And better with a giant I compare

Than do the giants with those arms of his;
  Consider now how great must be that whole,
  Which unto such a part conforms itself.

Were he as fair once, as he now is foul,
  And lifted up his brow against his Maker,
  Well may proceed from him all tribulation.

O, what a marvel it appeared to me,
  When I beheld three faces on his head!
  The one in front, and that vermilion was;

Two were the others, that were joined with this
  Above the middle part of either shoulder,
  And they were joined together at the crest;

And the right-hand one seemed 'twixt white and yellow;
  The left was such to look upon as those
  Who come from where the Nile falls valley-ward.

Underneath each came forth two mighty wings,
  Such as befitting were so great a bird;
  Sails of the sea I never saw so large.

 No feathers had they, but as of a bat
  Their fashion was; and he was waving them,
  So that three winds proceeded forth therefrom.

Thereby Cocytus wholly was congealed.
  With six eyes did he weep, and down three chins
  Trickled the tear-drops and the bloody drivel.

At every mouth he with his teeth was crunching
  A sinner, in the manner of a brake,
  So that he three of them tormented thus.

To him in front the biting was as naught
  Unto the clawing, for sometimes the spine
  Utterly stripped of all the skin remained.

"That soul up there which has the greatest pain,"
  The Master said, "is Judas Iscariot;
  With head inside, he plies his legs without.

Of the two others, who head downward are,
  The one who hangs from the black jowl is Brutus;
  See how he writhes himself, and speaks no word.

And the other, who so stalwart seems, is Cassius.
  But night is reascending, and 'tis time
  That we depart, for we have seen the whole."

Other influences - it seems that Bakker has taken the ethical views of Kant and Mill and set them up as opposite pairs, divine and damned, feminine and masculine.  Mill's utilitarianism *uses* and thus Kellhus is more damned than all others.  Kant focuses on the inviolable laws of conduct represented by Mimara.  Of course it's more complicated and messier than an on/off switch, Akka says as much referencing X, but using/not-using seem to be the polarities forming the ultimate morality of Earwa.

I want to write about mechanismism from Descartes and Hobbes' clockwork people but back to work now.

Literature / Re: YOU MUST TELL ME ... What else are you reading?
« on: April 03, 2018, 06:00:13 pm »
The Reality Dysfunction by Peter F Hamilton

Wow. This is a great book so far. Strong scifi/space-opera with (probably) overly technical explanations of this and that super tech (which I appreciate), well imagined futuristic space-faring civilization (humans mostly, but some great aliens too), clever technological developments, great pacing with interspersed action and informational sections. Really just great world building and story telling.

The biggest problem with this book is that it feels like there is erotica spliced into it. I mean there's a lot of sex scenes that are highly detailed, and they pop up what seems like every 50ish pages. For a book that's 900+pages ... it starts to add up. Its not as if I skip over it - its done well - its just to a point where I might call it gratuitous.

I know Hamilton has a fair number of books (wiki says 10) and I look forward to getting around to them some day.

Nice! I think I got the audiobook of that on sale--glad it's good. 

I'm reading The Black Prism by Brent Weeks and re-listening to The Forever War

The Unholy Consult / Re: [TUC Spoilers] - Cnaïur/Ajokli theory
« on: April 02, 2018, 02:22:38 pm »
Ok, kind of late in Dune, after Paul has an encounter with a certain substance...

Paul said: "There is in each of us an ancient force that takes and an
ancient force that gives. A man finds little difficulty facing that place within
himself where the taking force dwells, but it's almost impossible for him to see
into the giving force without changing into something other than man. For a
woman, the situation is reversed."

Jessica looked up, found Chani was staring at her while listening to Paul.

"Do you understand me, Mother?" Paul asked.

She could only nod.

"These things are so ancient within us," Paul said, "that they're ground
into each separate cell of our bodies. We're shaped by such forces. You can say
to yourself, 'Yes, I see how such a thing may be. ' But when you look inward and
confront the raw force of your own life unshielded, you see your peril. You see
that this could overwhelm you. The greatest peril to the Giver is the force that
takes. The greatest peril to the Taker is the force that gives. It's as easy to
be overwhelmed by giving as by taking."

This is why I think the Outside might boil down to polarizing forces of Yatwer and Ajokli/War; Giver and Taker

The Unholy Consult / Re: [TUC Spoilers] - Cnaïur/Ajokli theory
« on: April 02, 2018, 01:42:18 pm »
Hi Walter!  I'm torn about Ajokli.  Part of me just thinks he's different in degree and not kind.  Yatwer can see sranc but not mog.  Ajokli can't see mog but he knows that he's missing something so he gets a man to deliver a report.  Ajokli knows something is casting a shadow and uses it to his advantage.

All of that makes me think different in degree and not kind, however...

The way Yatwer/Yatwerians regard 'hungers' as special and deplorable is really odd.  Yatwer doesn't seem to refer to any other god as a hunger and no hungers are gods (although there is a part where a ciphrang is referred to as a godling).

Makes me wonder if that is the horizon demarcation in the Outside.  Above the line are the gods and the 'heavens,' below the line are the hungers/demons and the 'hells.'  I have to put bunny ears on that because I'm not sure that heaven is categorically different than hell in the sense that the gods are consuming their pets in both places. 

I get the vibe that hungers are displeasing to gods because of the manner and substance they eat.  Perhaps Yatwer looks down on Ajokli because what he considers food (wicked souls) are filth to her.  Ajokli may be looking to supplant Yatwer and co because he eats filth, yes, but only because that's what they leave him and he would consume all.

I almost get a class war vibe off Ajokli, like he is the underclass, the unrecognized god, almost another Yatwer but for souls in the Outside.  Ajokli wants to overthrow the order not just for food but also for resentment of his place.

I found this thing that makes me think Bakker's worldview can be traced back to...I've got to look it up

Literature / New Book by Tolkien...
« on: June 02, 2017, 04:13:15 pm »

Anyone read it?  I like the Beren and Luthien story.  Might pick this up soon

The Unholy Consult / Re: The Unholy Consult Giveaway
« on: June 02, 2017, 03:59:48 pm »

Randomly selected winners of Advanced Reader Copies of The Unholy Consult are...

1) Walter
2) Redeagl


The Unholy Consult / Re: The Unholy Consult Giveaway
« on: May 25, 2017, 08:23:41 pm »
Legolas kills Paul Atreides with the sled G W F Hegel used as a child.

dear gods!

The Unholy Consult / The Unholy Consult Giveaway
« on: May 25, 2017, 06:25:33 pm »
Overlook Press will be giving away two Advanced Reader Copies of The Unholy Consult!  Make your predictions for the book!  Who will die?  How?  Who will live?  What secrets will be told?

Here’s how to enter:
- Create an account at (if you don’t already have one).
- At, scroll down to The Aspect-Emperor link and click and follow through to The Unholy Consult subforum.
- Select “The Unholy Consult Giveaway” thread.
- Post a response to the thread.  Make a prediction about what will happen in TUC!  Come back later for an “I told you so!”

- ONE entry per person.  You can post all you like but only ONE chance to win per person responding in the thread (even if you have more than one account).
- The contest is open from now until 5PM EST Thursday, June 1st.
- Winners will be contacted through a private message at and by email (if you include your email with your account).


[EDIT Madness: Made one small adjustment to your instructions.]

The Unholy Consult / Book Review: The Unholy Consult
« on: May 15, 2017, 07:42:54 pm »
The Unholy Consult by R. Scott Bakker crashes into the inevitable contest between the Dûnyain-Prophet, Anasûrimbor Kellhus, and the vile Consult hierarchy.  This novel, the fourth and concluding volume of The Aspect-Emperor series, chronicles a convergent conflict, millennia in the making, between Men, Nonmen, and Inchoroi abomination.  Tekne and Logos will vie for the fate of the world, the fate of souls.  The Great Ordeal will traverse the unnatural wastes at the end of the world to face it…the Golden Horror.

Weaving the narrative threads of The Aspect-Emperor into a rope, The Unholy Consult hangs from the Horns of Golgotterath.  The survivors of Ishterebinth make haste to join the Great Ordeal, which in turn staggers in its last desperate trek through the Fields of Woe.  Following the destruction of the Horde at Dagliash, the false Believer-King, Nersei Proyas, struggles to steer the might of Earwa across ashen Agongorea.  Stripped to the foundation of their Meat, the Men of the Ordeal find they must overcome themselves to march upon their foe, to achieve the requisite mad ferocity to topple wicked and alien heights.  Besotted, crazed with loss and bewildered hope, the old Wizard, Achamian, and the pregnant Prophet, Mimara, draw near to gaze upon the Aspect-Emperor with the Judging Eye.  Even the eyes of the damned will stand witness to the Warrior-Prophet’s ultimate disputation of war. Gobozkoy like no other.  As the Great Ordeal unleashes its collective might on Unholy Golgotterath, Bakker rolls into one all the strategy, tactical reversal, and heartbreak of the battle sequences of his six preceding novels…and the Gods play benjuka across the very the plate of the world.

Thematically, the darkness that comes before dominates all individuals through every faction. In a contest of this magnitude, none can be sure their cause is righteous truth.  Meat and spirit, meaning and its wages compel reason run to the end of sanity—The Unholy Consult emerges as the most profuse expression of Bakker’s philosophical viewpoint on humanity’s frame and substance. Stylistically, Bakker furthers the coiled power of word and verse from The Great Ordeal: epic fantasy as adventure and elegy.  This novel is word for word, line for line, condensed, packed, loaded.  In the end, Bakker sparks a detonation proper to the termination of The Aspect-Emperor series.  A rebuke of and tribute to the Tolkinesque tradition, a rumination on holy scripture, and prophetic word, The Unholy Consult is above all a tale to grasp the heart.

Included with The Unholy Consult is an expanded encyclopedic glossary, elaborating on the glossary of The Thousandfold Thought, divulging history, secrets, lies, and promising more.  A particular highlight is a short account concerning the Aspect-Emperor, revealing insight into his peculiar magic and snatched, it would seem, while the Anasûrimbor thought no one watching. Bakker’s, previously available online Atrocity Tales, short stories set in Earwa, “The False Sun” and “The Four Revelations,” are also included as Appendices Two and Three.  “The False Sun” constitutes an episode from the formation of the Consult and their grudge with the ancient Grandmaster of the Sohonc, mighty Titirga.  “The Four Revelations” takes the reader inside the mind of a Nonman Erratic, long-lived beyond all dead glory and sanity.

Tragedy, tragedy averted, tragedy necessary and inescapable, The Unholy Consult marches toward Golgotterath, measuring its path by the suffering of its persons.  This is the seventh book in The Second Apocalypse series.  Apocalypse is revelation.  Bakker delivers humanity, character and reader alike, to the revelation of the fate of worlds.

Behold!  The Passion of the Warrior-Prophet.

General Misc. / Re: On the Manipulation of Nations
« on: May 12, 2017, 11:26:53 pm »
An interesting opinion piece about Trump/Russia affair:

Haha! Nonono! I was just interested in the bit about Putin's playbook :)

Oh MG. I hate Trump as much as the next guy...but you're not buying that this is the first time there has been a manipulating of nations, are ya? I mean, i KNOW you're not that naive. I just find it hilarious that people seem to think Trump is breaking new ground here.

General Earwa / Re: "Name That Comic!" ..... The CONTEST!!
« on: May 03, 2017, 12:36:48 am »
Well, MG, that qualifies for the coveted "WTF?" prize.

it is not
"This is the way the world ends.
This is the way the world ends.
This is the way the world ends.
Not with a bang, but with an anus leaf joke."
(with apologies to T. S. Eliot)

holy shit bk--that was awesome

The Unholy Consult / Re: Crazy speculation only
« on: May 02, 2017, 10:39:42 pm »
Got a crazy idea about what's going to happen in TUC?  Share it here!

For my part:

1.  Moenghus will not re-appear onscreen.  But his presence will be felt -- the longest of long-plays.

2.  The second chapter will involve Proyas converting the non-Scalded to cannibalism.  This will involve eating the Scalded.
 Rather than weep and struggle with the decision, he'll be as passionless as an Anasurimbor.  Serwa and Sorweel will arrive via chariot at the end of the chapter.

3. Kellhus will return to the Ordeal with Esme AND Meppa.


General Earwa / Re: "Name That Comic!" ..... The CONTEST!!
« on: May 02, 2017, 10:28:31 pm »
Well, MG, that qualifies for the coveted "WTF?" prize.




it is not

General Earwa / Re: Here goes ...
« on: May 02, 2017, 08:15:21 pm »
Lol - he knew basically a little less fuck all than it does now. Which is still fuck all ;).

Old Me figured the the No-God was simply just a tool.  New Me knows that.  So I guess we are getting somewhere, even if that is still the middle of nowhere, haha.


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