TDTCB, Ch. 3

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What Came Before

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« on: April 19, 2013, 10:40:37 am »
Quote from: Madness
Sorry all for the missed "week." I fly home wednesday and my life will return to some sort of normalcy, at least concerning my routine. In the future, considering the loose trend of posting as the re-read goes on, I encourage anyone to start the thread for new chapters at appropriate times, if something like my absence happens again.

Cheers.

What Came Before

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« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2013, 10:40:49 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
Will do, I thought about starting a thread but wasn't sure on the protocol.

Can you move posts from the Chapter 2 thread to this one?  or Split the Chapter 2 topic, and then merge the two topics?

A great chapter, this one, the singular thing that stands out to me is the first two paragraphs of Inrau's POV.  Just what is going on here?

What Came Before

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« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2013, 10:41:03 am »
Quote from: Tony P
Here's my summary for chapter 3:

If the world us a game whose rules are written by the God, and sorcerers are those who cheat and cheat, then who has written the rules of sorcery?
– ZARATHINIUS, A DEFENCE OF THE ARCANE ARTS

Akka arrives in Sumna. He reflects on Inrau and Maithanet: “there would be a momentum to Inrau’s tone, a mad certainty that could put cities, even nations, to the sword, as though his righteous joy could be attached to any act of madness. Here again was reason why Maithanet should be so deeply feared: to possess this momentum was disease enough, but to be a carrier… There was pause for thought.
   Maithanet carried a plague whose primary symptom was certainty. How the God could be equated with the absence of hesitation was something Achamian had never understood. After all, what was the God but the mystery that burdened them all? What was hesitation but a dwelling within this mystery?”

Akka is interrupted by the captain of his ship, who lacks appreciation for the finer points of jnan. This leads him to muse on the onta: “An image struck Achamian: himself as a boy, climbing on the big rocks, the ones his father had used to dry the nets, pausing every few breathless instants simply to look around him. Something had happened. It was as if he’d opened different eyelids, ones beneath those he normally opened each morning. Everything was so agonizingly tight, as though the flesh of the world had been dried taut across the gaps between bone: the net against stone, the grid of shadows cast over the hollows, the watery beads cupped between the flex of tendons on his hands–so clear! And within this tightness, the sensation of inner blooming, the collapse of seeing into being, as though his eyes had been wrung into the very heart of things. From the surface of the stone, he could see himself, a dark child towering across the disc of the sun.
   The very fabric of existence. The onta. He had – and he could still never quite express this–“experienced” it. Unlike most others, he’d known immediately he was one of the Few, known with a child’s certainty. “Atyersus!” he could remember crying, feeling the vertigo of a life no longer to be determined by his caste, by his father, or by the past.”

Akka goes on to reflect that sorcery is a destructive power, a debasing and brutalizing of the God’s song. He reflects on the Gnosis, which sets the Mandate apart from the other schools: “…the Gnosis, the knowledge of the Ancient North. Before their extinction, the great Schools of the North had possessed benefactors, pilots to navigate them through shoals no human mind could conceive of. The Gnosis of the Nonmen Magi, the Quya, refined through another thousand years of human cunning.”

There’s a line here that might be a nod to Tolkien: Akka reflects in Sumna’s harbor, thinking of “the White Ships in Neleost, thousands of years ago.” I’m not overly familiar with Tolkien outside The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, but given Scott’s known affinity with Tolkien, I assume this might be a nod to The Silmarillion.

Sumna is packed with people, all there to hear the target of the Holy War. Akka thinks it odd that the Schools are allowed missions in Sumna, as the entire city is “the very heart of God. Literally.” The Hagerna, also houses the Tusk, traditionally kept by the tribe of the Ketyai.

Akka finds his way to Esmenet (“A strange, old-fashioned name for a woman of her character, but at the same time oddly appropriate for a prostitute”). Akka mentions how he was taken by the fevers six years ago, and almost died. Esmenet has her own pain: six years ago her daughter died.

Akka meets with Inrau. He is hurt by his failure to live up to his promise to leave Inrau alone. The Mandate’s need is too great. And Inrau is completely in awe of Maithanet, whose name means “instruction”. He rejoices in the fact that Maithanet sweeped the Thousand Temples clean of all baser influences. Akka asks him what he’ll think of a Holy War against the Schools, and is pleased to note Inrau is horrified by the thought of the Mandate’s (and Akka’s) destruction. Inrau let’s Akka know he still respects the Mandate’s mission, and Akka manages to impress on him that the Thousand Temples is the most likely place for the Consult to show itself, but they are interrupted by a Shrial Knight-Commander, by name of Lord Sarcellus. Sarcellus bullies Akka, who takes on the guise of Inrau’s drunken uncle. Sarcellus beats Akka, and then leaves. This display causes Inrau to take pity on Akka, and he agrees to be his spy. Akka attempts to gloss over the insult, but mumbling what he can do to Sarcellus with the Gnosis (The words I know!, he snarled, I could boil his heart in his chest!), but of course he does no such thing.

The next scene is in at the square of the Hagerna, in front of the Junriüma, where Maithanet is supposed to make known the object of the Holy War. The crowd is enormous. Maithanet arrives with some display (children dropping flowerpetals). Akka is right at the front of the crowd, and after Maithanet’s speech, which instantly sets the crowd afire, he sees someone kissing Maithanet’s knee. This is Nersei Proyas, the crown-prince of Conriya, and “the first pupil he’d loved”. Proyas is not amused to see Akka here; but more importantly, Maithanet recognizes Akka as one of the Few, and admonishes him to flee, since his kind are not wanted there. Akka is dumbstruck, because only the Few can see the Few, making Maithanet one of their number.

Proyas is taken to the Tusk itself, where he prays in silence, until he notices that he’s joined by Maithanet. He tells Proyas that many struggles await him, as the worldly powers will try to subvert the Holy War for their own purposes, especially the Schools: “Tell me, Nersei Proyas,”Maithanet said with the voice of edict. “Who was that man, that sorcerer, who dared pollute my presence?

What Came Before

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« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2013, 10:41:22 am »
Quote from: Callan S.
Just wondering about Inrau...
(click to show/hide)

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« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2013, 10:41:36 am »
Quote from: sologdin
Quote
If the world is a game whose rules are written by God, and sorcerers are those who cheat and cheat, then who has written the rules of sorcery?
(I.3 at 75).

we must first determine what the game happens to be.
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as it happens, we don’t know about any games yet.  so perhaps we note this, just as an incidental, in case we learn about any ludic recreative activities in-setting.

DA awakens from “ancient wars of his sleep” (I.3 at 75).  in the earlier conception, ancient is the original from which the recent makes its “more tawdry repetition.”  (I.1 at 39). 

so, DA continues to use the term ancient as though it distinguished something.  here, the ancient wars televised in his dreams--even though he “fumbled to sort out the real from the dream.”  I.3 at 75.

tawdry is bizarre as applied in I.i:
Quote
adjective
1. (of finery, trappings, etc.) gaudy; showy and cheap.
2. low or mean; base: tawdry motives.

Origin:
1605–15; short for ( Sain ) t Audrey lace, i.e., neck lace bought at St. Audrey's Fair in Ely, England; so called after St. Audrey ( Old English Aethelthrȳth, died 679), Northumbrian queen and patron saint of Ely, who, according to tradition, died of a throat tumor which she considered just punishment of her youthful liking for neck laces
bizarre, unless DA is reading his recent experiences as consumer products that can be unfavorably compared with ancient consumer products, via the television-dreams.  the recent experiences are gaudy, showy & cheap, low, mean, base. 

ancient/recent does not appear to be fully collapsed, as DA continues to distinguish between old and new--but rather we are presented with a binary that works less as x/y such that x=y (a collapse, an implosion of a binary relation) but rather x/y such that y supplements x as a cheap copy, one that substitutes for the ancient but also adds to it, replaces it:

Quote
And there is a fatal necessity, inscribed in the very functioning of the sign, that the substitute make one forget the vicariousness of its own function and make itself pass for the plenitude of a speech whose deficiency and infirmity it nevertheless only supplements. For the concept of the supplement—which here determines that of the representative image—harbors within itself two significations whose cohabitation is as strange as it is necessary. The supplement adds itself, it is a surplus, a plenitude enriching another plenitude, the fullest measure of presence. It cumulates and accumulates presence. It is thus that art, technè, image, representation, convention, etc., come as supplements to nature and are rich with this entire cumulating function. This kind of supplementary determines in a certain way all the conceptual oppositions within which Rousseau inscribes the notion of Nature to the extent that it should be self-sufficient.

But the supplement supplements. It adds only to replace. It intervenes or insinuates itself in-the-place-of; if it fills, it is as if one fills a void. If it represents and makes an image, it is by the anterior default of a presence. Compensatory [suppléant] and vicarious, the supplement is an adjunct, a subaltern instance which takes-(the)-place [tient-lieu]. As substitute, it is not simply added to the positivity of a presence, it produces no relief, its place is assigned in the structure by the mark of an emptiness. Somewhere, something can be filled up of itself, can accomplish itself, only by allowing itself to be filled through sign and proxy. The sign is always the supplement of the thing itself.

This second signification of the supplement cannot be separated from the first.
(derrida, of grammatology (1967) at 144-45). 

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but what of the dream of the ancient itself?  the dream is not the ancient world, but is rather a televised version of the alleged memory of one person from the ancient world.  is not the dream therefore a recent retelling, a repetition of the ancient?  does it not substitute?
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other items of interest:

certain “geographical sites” are “hinges of destiny” (I.3 at 76), merely “eggshells of stone” (id.) to our quickly-becoming unreliable narrator, who is able, he thinks, to “escape the weight of [his] time” (id.).  his unreliability is further evidenced by his identification of a “common low caste error” of jnan (I.3 at 77), revealing that even his first binary of high/low remains operative, despite claiming its collapse in I.1. 

Quote
”They never know what we are,” Achamian said.  “That’s the horrible fact of sinners.  We’re indistinguishable from the righteous.”
(I.3 at 77).  very important, as, incidentally, we might recall later, this passage invokes foucault’s argument in the discipline & punish:
Quote
If it is true that the leper gave rise to rituals of exclusion, which to a certain extent provided the model for and general form of the great Confinement, then the plague gave rise to disciplinary projects. Rather than the massive, binary division between one set of people and another, it called for multiple separations, individualizing distributions, an organization in depth of surveillance and control, an intensification and a ramification of power. The leper was caught up in a practice of rejection, of exile-enclosure; he was left to his doom in a mass among which it was useless to differentiate; those sick of the plague were caught up in a meticulous tactical partitioning in which individual differentiations were the constricting effects of a power that multiplied, articulated and subdivided itself; the great confinement on the one hand; the correct training on the other. The leper and his separation; the plague and its segmentations. The first is marked; the second analysed and distributed. The exile of the leper and the arrest of the plague do not bring with them the same political dream. The first is that of a pure community, the second that of a disciplined society. Two ways of exercising power over men, of controlling their relations, of separating out their dangerous mixtures. The plague-stricken town, traversed throughout with hierarchy, surveillance, observation, writing; the town immobilized by the functioning of an extensive power that bears in a distinct way over all individual bodies - this is the utopia of the perfectly governed city. The plague (envisaged as a possibility at least) is the trial in the course of which one may define ideally the exercise of disciplinary power. In order to make rights and laws function according to pure theory, the jurists place themselves in imagination in the state of nature; in order to see perfect disciplines functioning, rulers dreamt of the state of plague. Underlying disciplinary projects the image of the plague stands for all forms of confusion and disorder; just as the image of the leper, cut off from all human contact, underlies projects of exclusion.

They are different projects, then, but not incompatible ones.
(discipline & punish (1979) at 198-99).

whereas the leper is marked out by exterior signs of disease, the plague victim carries a hidden contagion.  the former might be read by even the lay, but the latter requires specialized procedure of quarantine and surveillance.  they give rise to distinct “political dreams” of the state--the dream of the pure community, based on the exclusion of “lepers,” and the dream of the well regulated city, free of hidden menaces, such as those who carry hidden contagion:
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The party duly convicted of Heresie, may recall, and abjure his opinion, and thereby save his life, but a Relapse is fatall: For as in case of a disease of the body, after recovery, recidivation is extremely dangerous: So in case of Heresie (a disease of the soule) a relapse is irrecoverable. And as he that is a Leper of his body, is to be removed from the society of men, lest he should infect them, by the kings Writ De leproso amovendo: So he that hath lepram animae, that is, to be convicted of Heresie, shall be cut off, lest he should poyson others, by the Kings Writ De haeretico comburendo. But if the Heretick will not after comviction abjure, he may by force of the said Writ De haeretico comburendo be burnt without abjuration.
(sir edward coke, institutes of the laws of england III (1644) at 443).

recognized early therefore in english law was the threat of the hidden menace, the “leper of the soul,” whose contagion is not marked out but insofar as words reflective of menacing interiority are published.  if, incidentally, RSB’s narrative turns to question of heresy and menacing interiority, of hidden lepers in general, perhaps we will revisit mr. coke’s writs de leproso amovendo and de haeretico comburendo as well as mr. foucault’s ideas about panopticism.  for now, suffice it to say that achamian understands that there are hidden menaces in the world: that sinners are not distinguishable from the righteous on the exterior, much like jews, witches, commies, terrorist cells have been in our own history.


Quote
And within this tightness, the sensation of inner blooming, of the collapse of seeing into being, as though his eyes had been wrung into the very heart of things.
(I.3 at 78).  and here the great sorcerer recounts his sorcerous origin, and reveals a more fundamental binary collapse--the collapse that underlies the previously disclosed collapses, that precedes them, makes them possible:  we have DA apprehending the onta:
Quote
The very fabirc of existence.  The onta.  He had--and he could still never adequately express this--”experienced” it.
(id.)  the interior mental state that defies expression is perhaps what we have been discussing in mr. Jorge’s philosophy 101 thread, regarding specifically the so-called hard problem of consciousness.  this quotation warrants those discussions:  it is a question present almost from the inception of the narrative, and is the underlying structure of the perspective of the principal protagonist.

Quote
To walk in Sumna was to walk through scripture.
(I.3 at 80).  this is also familiar to readers of cultural theory:
Quote
Even the most perfect reproduction of a work of art is lacking in one element: its presence in time and space, its unique existence at the place where it happens to be. This unique existence of the work of art determined the history to which it was subject throughout the time of its existence. This includes the changes which it may have suffered in physical condition over the years as well as the various changes in its ownership. The traces of the first can be revealed only by chemical or physical analyses which it is impossible to perform on a reproduction; changes of ownership are subject to a tradition which must be traced from the situation of the original.

The presence of the original is the prerequisite to the concept of authenticity. Chemical analyses of the patina of a bronze can help to establish this, as does the proof that a given manuscript of the Middle Ages stems from an archive of the fifteenth century. The whole sphere of authenticity is outside technical – and, of course, not only technical – reproducibility. Confronted with its manual reproduction, which was usually branded as a forgery, the original preserved all its authority; not so vis-à-vis technical reproduction. The reason is twofold. First, process reproduction is more independent of the original than manual reproduction. For example, in photography, process reproduction can bring out those aspects of the original that are unattainable to the naked eye yet accessible to the lens, which is adjustable and chooses its angle at will. And photographic reproduction, with the aid of certain processes, such as enlargement or slow motion, can capture images which escape natural vision. Secondly, technical reproduction can put the copy of the original into situations which would be out of reach for the original itself. Above all, it enables the original to meet the beholder halfway, be it in the form of a photograph or a phonograph record. The cathedral leaves its locale to be received in the studio of a lover of art; the choral production, performed in an auditorium or in the open air, resounds in the drawing room.
(benjamin, “the work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction” at section 2.)  what is valuable, in other words, for some copies is that they are copies of famous originals.  but once the copy is assimilated, what need of the original, except that it is the original of the copy in which one is already invested?  in this moment, sumna and scripture are in a relation of copy/original, like benjamin’s cathedral.  but which is the original, which the copy?


we note further occurrences of ancient throughout the chapter, as well as an uncritically deployed distant (I.3 at 79).  more “games” (I.3 at 75 (re: “dice”) and at 81).  perhaps some ugly gender politics (I.3 at 84)--DA is a troglodyte--does that extend to RSB? (i deny it)--cf. also further instance of pejorative “womanish“ (I.3 at 98).  ideology of “innocence” appears again (I.3 at 90).   

equation of  sorcerer and poet (I.3 at 79) as well as spy and “master storyteller”(I.3 at 90).  add in the earlier equation of the same two subjects to prostitutes, and we get the constellation of spy/sorcerer/writer/prostitute.  that is a nice bit of combined arrogance and self-derogation by mr. RSB.

DA’s perspective ends with his outing by the pope as a hidden leper (I.3 at 101).  we have therefore come to the time that a perfectly governed city may arise.  woe be upon all of us.

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« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2013, 10:41:54 am »
Quote from: Madness
sologdin, you seem an increasingly well read and interesting person. Cheers.

Also, lockesnow, I spent a little time trying to move the posts from Ch. 2 but I'm discovering severe limitations on certain administrative abilities, due to the nature of the "free" forumer package. I'll put it to the forumer wizards.

Sumna

If the world is a game whose rules are written by the God, and sorcerers are those who cheat and cheat, then who has written the rules of sorcery?

- ZARATHINIUS, A DEFENCE OF THE ARCANE ARTS

I have to say, I think you're being a little analytical too early on this one, sologdin. From what we've read so far, from Achamian's perspective Faith seems the rule in the Three Seas. Society is completely oriented around it and reality itself seems to make a distinction. Think of the early descriptions of the Cishaurim lack of mark and the destructive nature of Sorcery - it all suggests a breaking with the natural order, somehow, on the part of Schoolmen. This also contrasts with Kellhus' POV in the prologue, who rejects most of Leweth's extracurricular metaphysical musings on account of his particular perspectival lens.

If there is a God and he writes the rule of the world, who writes the rules of sorcery?

I've always wondered how much Bakker's influenced by the metaphysics of Christian Gnostics.

As interesting is the fact of the title and that this is in context of some kind of defense. Is the author proposing that God must write the rules of sorcery or that the rules of sorcery denote that there is no God?

Early Spring, 4110 Year-of-the-Tusk, En Route to Sumna[/i]

§3.1 – Momas

sologdin has focused on themes of dialectics, such as, ancient and recent or present. I just thought I'd add that §3.1 reflects Momas and the introduction of another God in its arc - I believe that is Husyelt (of the Prologue and Leweth's perspective) and now Momas. Also, I find the idea of those Nroni merchantmen praying to a God to protect their boat, and, ultimately, the passage of a blasphemer a tasty contradiction.

§3.2 – Men & the Few

Bakker seems to use §3.2 to muse on the contradiction between men and the Few. sologdin's noted the "weight" of certain places. We're introduced to Sumna, “the ancient centre of the Inrithi Faith” (p83), and how "for the Inrithi, this was the place where the heavens inhabited the earth. Sumna, the Hagerna, and the Junriuma … were bound in the very purpose of history” (p83).

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Achamian seems to be reflecting on the nature of social weight rather than supernatural weight - that is, the weight of shared meaning that human connotations bring, which we decide unconsciously or consciously, to objects and places. Inrau seems a mechanism for this reflection at first, "as though his righteous joy could be attached to any act of madness” (p83), the weight of meaning that makes us kill for the True Cross or Jerusalem.

Even worse, Bakker muses, is the idea that one might spout this meaning like a font. "To possess this momentum was disease enough, but to be the carrier … Maithanet carried a plague whose primary symptom was certainty” (p83).

The boat captain approaches Achamian on the skiff, “standing somewhat nearer than prescribed by the dictates of jnan – a common low caste error” (p84), which, I believe, is the first mention of jnan, or the idea of a gradient of cultural behavior. The captain comments on the dangers of Achamian coming to the Sumna. “Someone like me… A sorcerer in a holy city”(p84), Achamian reflects.

Achamian lashes back at the man, suggesting that people "never know what we are ... That's the horrible fact of sinners. We're indistinguishable from the righteous" (p84). Bakker takes this as a junction for explaining the experiential differences between the mundane perception and that of the Few, who perceive “the very fabric of existence. The onta” (p85).

"Am I so different from this man?" (p86), Achamians wonders. “How could one not feel isolated, detached, when existence itself answered to their tongue?” (p86). Achamian also reflects on the strictly destructive nature of sorcery. "The power, the brilliant flurries of light, possessed an irresistible direction, and it was the wrong one: the direction of destruction ... When sorcerers sing, men die” (p86).

The Gnosis is set apart from other sorceries as "knowledge of the Ancient North … The Gnosis of the Nonmen Magi, the Quya, refined through another thousand years of human cunning” (p87).

“In so many ways he was a god to these fools … a sorcerer who forgot this hatred forgot how to stay alive” (p87).

Overall, §3.2 reflects my choice in passage name - the arc of Bakker's words, the reason he's put them to paper, seems to be communicate the distinction between men to the Few and the Few to the Mandate.

§3.3 Faith & Sorcery

Achamian walks the streets of Sumna … the very heart of God (p87). I also find it interesting, like Achamian, that the Schools are allowed missions in Sumna. It seems very much like giving the Devil an Embassy in Heaven.

More about “The Chronicle of the Tusk was the most ancient and therefore the more thunderous voice of the past, so ancient that it was itself without any clear history … ribboned by characters, the Tusk recorded the great migratory invasions that marked the ascendency of Men in Earwa … had been in the possession of one tribe, the Ketyai” (p87-88).

A man jostles Achamian in the push and Achamian notices the singular direction of many warlike men. “’Maithanet has called the faithful to Sumna,’ he said, suspicious of Achamian’s ignorance. ‘He’s to reveal the object of the Holy War.’” (p88)

Bakker leaves time for it to sting, “Manipulation upon manipulation. Even the Quorum played games with their own pieces” (p89), before the man adds “Pray that it’s the Schools we war against, my friend, rather than the Fanim. Sorcery is ever the greater cancer' ... Achamian almost agreed” (p89).

§3.4 Esmenet & the Consult

Achamian rises with Esmenet, assumptively the girl from Sumna. There is some obvious miscommunication happening between these two lovers as they reflect together on Achamian's Fevers & Esmenet’s lost daughter.

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“Achamian had come to Sumna for two reasons: to determine whether this new Shriah planned to wage his Holy War against the Schools, and to learn whether the Consult had any hand in these remarkable events” (p91).

“How else could one describe a war without a foe?” (p91)

Esmenet asks Achamian if he intends to turn Inrau and it leads to the suggestion that Achamian is mad. From Kellhus' perspective, we could argue that we've seen evidence of the Consult's remains in the North, the Nonman and its Sranc, but arguably, even the thing that took Geshrunni can't be pinned directly to the Consult.

The Question of the Consult defines Achamian in §3.4. He suggests to Esmenet that “whether I’m mad or no depends on whether my enemy exists” (p92).

§3.5 Inrau & Achamian

lockesnow raised the question of just what happens in the initial paragraph with Inrau's perspective.

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“Words that battered whatever will remained to him. Words that walked with his limbs … everything rushed into the bearded man … light spilling from his working mouth. Flakes of sun in his eyes “… Achamian” (p93).

For my money, I've always supposed that this is a dream that Inrau has - communication from Achamian - and Bakker transitions awkwardly to the actual moment of physicality meeting. However, the specificity of "battered whatever will remained to him... that walked with his limbs" does beg the question of just what is happening.

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Ultimately, Inrau asks why his old world has come to threaten his new world. “The world has had the habit … of breaking the back of my promises” (p95), Achamian answers.

§3.6 The Recruitment of Inrau & The slap of Lord Sarcellus

Bakker switches back to Achamian's perspective within the meeting of Inrau. We learn some interesting tidbits about Maithanet, specifically, “he’s to be obeyed, not worshipped. That’s why he took his name … mai’tathana … Thoti-Eannorean, the language of the Tusk. It means ‘instruction’” (p95-96).

Achamian reveals that he was sent by the Mandate and begins to attempt to divide Inrau against the Thousand Temples. I also noted the quote sologdin did about “Frames – give them greater frames with which to interpret the treachery out of their action. Before all, a spy who recruits spies must be a master storyteller.” (p98)

§3.6 continues with the altercation with Lord Sarcellus (p99) where he hints at some kind of previous association with Achamian, “How I’ve longed to do that, pig,” (p101).

§3.7 False Prophet & Holy War

We find Achamian later at the declaration of the Holy War, in the central square of the Hagerna. He muses about the architecture, the crush of the Faithful, and his mission. “If Maithanet declares against the Schools … Me … the first casualty of the new Scholastic Wars” (p104).

Here we have Achamian deluding himself, perhaps, about the fact of Inrau's conversion, “the fact that he’d succeeded without Cants balmed his sense of shame” (p106), and the anomalous nature of the Gnosis “If he failed his mission, the Quorum would kill Inrau … The Gnosis, even the few rudiments known to Inrau, was more valuable than any single life” (p106).

Bakker spends moments meditating on the nature of Maithanet's power preceding this and then the College of Luthymae is introduced.

“If he’d used Cants of Compulsion, sooner or later the Luthymae, the college of monks and priests that managed the Thousand Temples’ own vast network of spies, would have identified the mark of sorcery upon Inrau. Not all the Few became sorcerers. Many used the “gift” to war against the Schools.”

Finally, Maithanet is introduced and his high oratory rings in the air.

“By itself,” the Shriah was crying, “Fanimry is an affront to the God … These people, these Kianene, are an obscene race, followers of a False Prophet. A False Prophet, my children! The Tusk tells us there is no greater abomination than the False Prophet … We shall war and we shall war until SHIMEH IS FREE!” (p109)

Following his broad declarations and Achamian's recognition of his former student Proyas, Maithanet tells Achamian he should flee, that sorcerers are not welcome. Achamian knows that Maithanet must be of the Few because “only the Few could see the Few.” (p111)

§3.8 The Temple of the Field of War

The chapter ends with a perspective from Nersei Proyas, Prince of Conriya. He walks within the Junriuma, the Vault-of-the-Tusk, with Gotian, Grandmaster of the Shrial Knights and finally, we witness...

“The Tusk. A great winding horn of ivory … suspended by chains that soared upward … Holiest of holies … The first verses of the Gods. The first scripture. Here.” (p112) *my bolding*

In a big way, Nersei Proyas makes a covenant with his God and the Inrithi Holy War. “I submit to your Word, God. I commend my soul to the fierce task that you have laid before me. I shall make a temple of the field of war” (p113).

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Maithanet approaches the Prince and warns him that conspirators and spies are coming... like Achamian, the sorcerer.

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« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2013, 10:42:10 am »
Quote from: The Sharmat
Quote from: Madness
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« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2013, 10:42:18 am »
Quote from: sologdin
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« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2013, 10:42:26 am »
Quote from: Madness
The Sharmat got my gist - a most excellent suggestion by the way, Sharmat.

sologdin,

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« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2013, 10:42:33 am »
Quote from: Callan S.
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« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2013, 10:42:49 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
I would imagine that "Only the few can see the few" is something that applies to only those marked, a more accurate statement would be, "only the few can see the marked"  Because I think a Dunyain, or one trained by the Dunyain, would be able to identify a sorcerer via non-sorcerous techniques (such as reading their face, their carraige, other aspects of their manner, with exquisite accuracy, even if said Dunyain were not of the few.