Neil to Kellhus

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What Came Before

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« on: April 19, 2013, 11:45:24 am »
Quote from: Madness
White-Luck Warrior Spoilers:

I had this conversation with some friends years ago - though they'd never read Bakker's works so much of the context was lost on them.

I've had versions of this revelation before but haven't reread Neuropath since the forum's advent - as I find myself knee deep in Bible's world again (I usually do this when I'm feeling stressed out), I thought to exercise this forum.

For a long time, I've considered Neil and Kellhus two sides of the same coin. Except today, my brain spawned the interesting narrative connection that perhaps Kellhus is Neil's understudy, rather than his equal.

The Dunyain have effectively trained, practiced, to minimize the inherent effects of Darkness That Comes Before. Neil simply turns off the epiphenomenal circuits.

This could be why Kellhus wants the Tekne. He knows that he suffers vestigial remnants of being innately biological Worldborn, after all.

Thoughts?

What Came Before

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« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2013, 11:45:32 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
yup

What Came Before

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« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2013, 11:45:39 am »
Quote from: Callan S.
I'll riff on that and go one further - he does have vestigial human traits - BUT he thinks he no longer does. He DOES want the tekne - but in order to convert everyone else (perhaps by some airbourne vector). And when/if he does, although he is mad, he'll end up the last human alive. Perhaps closing the gates against the god-thingies.

Duskweaver

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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2014, 02:14:18 pm »
If anything, Neil and Kellhus feel like opposites to me. Neil has given up on becoming a self-moving soul, because the Argument proves that the Dunyain's quest is impossible. IMO, Neil is more like...

Neil Cassidy
Nau-Cayuti
No-Christ

The annointed martyr-messiah who awakens the No-God. He dies to bring about the semantic apocalypse. The revelation that sets you free from the illusion of meaning.
"Then I looked, and behold, a Whirlwind came out of the North..." - Ezekiel 1:4

"Two things that brand one a coward: using violence when it is not necessary; and shrinking from it when it is."

Madness

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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2014, 09:55:57 pm »
I like this:

The annointed martyr-messiah who awakens the No-God. He dies to bring about the semantic apocalypse. The revelation that sets you free from the illusion of meaning.

But...

If anything, Neil and Kellhus feel like opposites to me. Neil has given up on becoming a self-moving soul, because the Argument proves that the Dunyain's quest is impossible.

I'm curious about your distinctions here? I don't follow. (I have personally made the argument elsewhere that Neil and Kellhus are opposite ends of a spectrum but before I exposite I would like to know more.)
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Duskweaver

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« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2014, 01:57:31 pm »
I haven't slept well for three nights now (a close relative is very ill), so this might not be all that coherent...

The Dunyain believe that it is potentially possible to come before everything, to master all circumstance, to be in control of all the things that control oneself while still remaining, in at least some sense, oneself (i.e. you're not simply moving one step back up the chain). Attaining the Absolute is to bend what comes before and what comes after into a self-moving circle. In Earwa, it's at least conceivable that this might actually work.

The Argument, however, holds all this subject to the physical and logical laws of our own supernatural-free world. You can't come before yourself. You can't boost your intellect through generations of selective breeding to overcome the Blind Brain problem. Bio-engineering the problem away just reveals the brick wall at the back of the theatre. There is no 'self' and no 'soul', so the idea of a 'self-moving soul' is nonsensical. The only 'Absolute' is the non-existence of meaning, which renders even itself defunct.

IMO, the metaphysical set-up of Earwa is Bakker's counter to the Argument. Either Neil's right or God exists, basically (hence he is logically equivalent to 'No-God'). The Inchoroi are the end-product of a world of Neils and Samanthas, who found out too late that the Argument is actually wrong, and set out to make it right.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2014, 02:00:51 pm by Duskweaver »
"Then I looked, and behold, a Whirlwind came out of the North..." - Ezekiel 1:4

"Two things that brand one a coward: using violence when it is not necessary; and shrinking from it when it is."

Phallus Pendulus

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« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2014, 04:52:07 pm »
Bio-engineering the problem away just reveals the brick wall at the back of the theatre.

I don't think "bio-engineering the problem away" is even possible, at least not for our species as we are now. Bio-engineering ourselves deeper into the illusion, certainly.After all, the human brain only perceives the limited amount of things that evolution has "designed" it to perceive. As Bakker is fond of saying, a brain can't view and study itself no more than a fingertip can touch itself.




Madness

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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2014, 06:54:03 pm »
I haven't slept well for three nights now (a close relative is very ill), so this might not be all that coherent...

Many, much condolences.

The Dunyain believe that it is potentially possible to come before everything, to master all circumstance, to be in control of all the things that control oneself while still remaining, in at least some sense, oneself (i.e. you're not simply moving one step back up the chain). Attaining the Absolute is to bend what comes before and what comes after into a self-moving circle. In Earwa, it's at least conceivable that this might actually work.

I don't disagree with this but I feel it might hit upon a constraint I'm not willing to include in our dialogue. In Earwa, biological antecedents might very well be supernatural ("a thought comes not when 'it' wants, but when 'Onkis' wants," etc).

The Argument, however, holds all this subject to the physical and logical laws of our own supernatural-free world. You can't come before yourself. You can't boost your intellect through generations of selective breeding to overcome the Blind Brain problem. Bio-engineering the problem away just reveals the brick wall at the back of the theatre. There is no 'self' and no 'soul', so the idea of a 'self-moving soul' is nonsensical. The only 'Absolute' is the non-existence of meaning, which renders even itself defunct.

Hm... this gets extremely tricky quickly. To the bold, that actually might actually be theoretically possible. We don't know.

Also, self-moving brain, self-moving soul... they don't seem to differ at all in my perspective (insofar as I'm ignoring the Earwan-situation because, again, that strays into emancipating my self from the "antecedent Gods").

IMO, the metaphysical set-up of Earwa is Bakker's counter to the Argument. Either Neil's right or God exists, basically (hence he is logically equivalent to 'No-God'). The Inchoroi are the end-product of a world of Neils and Samanthas, who found out too late that the Argument is actually wrong, and set out to make it right.

Again - I don't disagree, I just think constraining ourselves to Earwa isn't conducive to this conversation.

Back to my unwritten thoughts from before: the inception of this thread's idea was the realization that Kellhus could accomplish the transition between Kellhus and Kellhus-It (Neil -> Neil-It) using the Tekne. To master what comes before, stripping himself of the final vestigial-antecedents that he knows the Dunyain have only muted, not extinguished with the Project.

Which, ironically, validates your whole Neil-It (Kellhus-It in this conception) as "the annointed martyr-messiah who awakens the No-God. He dies to bring about the semantic apocalypse. The revelation that sets you free from the illusion of meaning."

Lol.

Bio-engineering the problem away just reveals the brick wall at the back of the theatre.

I don't think "bio-engineering the problem away" is even possible, at least not for our species as we are now. Bio-engineering ourselves deeper into the illusion, certainly.After all, the human brain only perceives the limited amount of things that evolution has "designed" it to perceive. As Bakker is fond of saying, a brain can't view and study itself no more than a fingertip can touch itself.

Maybe instead: The human brain 'mind' can only perceive ... "designed" it to perceive.

And I'm not sure I can offer a thought concerning "bio-engineering the problem away" but Neil-It is almost certainly a cyborg, chemically augmented by nootropics, sure, but more importantly technologically augmented... But regardless, it is actually very likely possible to influence existing human physiology in order to achieve the "Lo-Fi" experience that Neil-It suggests is the true physiological-perceptual limits of Blind Brain rather than the "Hi-Fi" experience we think we have, as neglect "fills in" the ring of oblivion around the mind-screen, among other illusory by-products, etc, etc.
The Existential Scream
Weaponizing the Warrior Pose - Declare War Inwardly
carnificibus: multus sanguis fluit
Die Better
The Theory-Killer