[TGO Spoilers] Whale Mothers

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MSJ

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« Reply #120 on: September 30, 2016, 02:59:58 am »
I remember... remember... being hesitant about the thing when we first got it. It's over, we can't bring back whatever karma we had. Whichever Gods wished to munch us will have to find new ways to judge our karma.

8)

Gods? Or, posters not wiling to engage? I'll go with the latter. I truly never liked it, I just didn't want to be the reason you took it away. Now instead of simply giving negative Karma, disgruntled posters will have to interact and discuss what they don't like about a post. As it should be. Hey, don't be afraid. I say silly shit all the time, feel few to call me out and correct me...a little discourse goes a long way, imho.
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Yellow

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« Reply #121 on: September 30, 2016, 09:59:26 am »
Meh. People can down vote me as much as they like, but it doesn't make me any less FUCKING AWESOME.
You are the fist that beats us.

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« Reply #122 on: September 30, 2016, 10:19:23 am »
Meh. People can down vote me as much as they like, but it doesn't make me any less FUCKING AWESOME.

“Who will take the downvote to my heart?”
I am a warrior of ages, Anasurimbor. . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury. -Cet'ingira

Uncle Holy

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« Reply #123 on: February 21, 2017, 10:12:57 pm »
I really hate the whale-mothers. Felt like beating a dead horse and stretched my suspension of disbelief too far. When I first read the previews I held out some hope that maybe Dunyain women just ended up that way once impregnated and it was some kind of weird second-puberty, but nah, seems like they're born incubators and lack Dunyain emotional stunting and conditioning for yet another example of "Hey don't women have it bad?"

I found it disagreeable from a taste standpoint as well, but it is also flawed in that it is self-defeating and ultimately less interesting than the alternative.  Consider the following: the Dunyain turned their women into axolotl tanks because they wanted total control over their bloodline for eugenics and found lobotomized baby machines the shortest path to that goal.  But this is a form of self-harm - children don't stop needing maternal care at birth, they typically require many years of it before they reach maturity, and "Whale-mothers" can't give that.  This means that the Dunyain's chosen path was actually destructive and subversive of their goals - they needed a way to establish control of women without removing them from the natural reproductive cycle so drastically.  There was a way to do this.  You will recall that Kellhus more or less effortlessly seduced Esmenet and Serwe. I see no reason that comparatively more permanent seductions could not have been carried out under controlled conditions - and Ishual is conditioned ground.  This means that a more productive strategy would have been finding a way to perform on each Dunyain woman something akin to the sexual imprinting seen in the Honored Matres of the later Dune books - an experience so addictive that it essentially collapses the difference between intercourse in general and sex with a specific person into one event, making it impossible to conceive of having more than one mate.  This would produce the control factor.  Combined with women's natural propensity to care for their children and the general fanaticism of the Dunyain, and it would be easy to breed a sub-species of women who are totally specialized to "voluntary" breeding to the exclusion of all else: they have their children by the man they are imprinted to , and all else is unimaginable to them.  Other details could be handled in a miscellaneous manner, e.g. having those turned menopausal poison themselves as the Dunyain who received the dreams from Moenghus did.  This could even be promoted as a highly rational act, even "desirable" in a sense, since their ability to perform their function, motherhood, had come to an end; a controlled culture could have been created that would take it for granted that they would do this, a further reinforcement factor.  Or perhaps shortened lifespan could have been designed in somehow.  All of this would have gotten the eugenic job done while also providing lots of creepy feels to the audience. 

And it would have made Requires Only Hate that much madder.

You presume the early Dunyain were sophisticated enough for this technique. And that the Whale Mothers were always as they are now. Like Bakker said, they were a young sect before the First Apocalypse. The simplest solution to them at first would've just been to put them all in one room and turn them into mere wombs. That could certainly have been the Shortest Path, as far as those primitive Dunyain could see, for getting rid of distractions. Perhaps later as the Study progressed, they discovered eugenics and thought "Cool! Now we can design our kids to be even bigger monsters than we are!". But there was no real need to change things so drastically as to create a new sub-gender, when the current process worked well enough. Why introduce some new factor that could potentially slow or de-rail the Study?
I'm not sure what maternal care you're referring to but feeding the babies is something some Pragma could have been assigned. No need for that pesky attachment babies form with their mothers. Bakker's way is more plausible, I think.

Francis Buck

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« Reply #124 on: March 04, 2017, 12:22:35 am »
CRACKPOT:

The Ark, which was apparently once a living thing in-and-of itself, is basically a super Tekne version of a Whale Mother, one that births Inchoroi instead of Dunyain.

It's interesting to note also, that the Consult refers to ancient Inchoroi as the Old Fathers, while the ancient Dunyain women are referred to as the First Mothers. Very Lovecraftian, cosmic horror sort of thing there.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2017, 12:40:23 am by Franc is Buck »

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« Reply #125 on: March 08, 2017, 03:32:50 am »
CRACKPOT:

The Ark, which was apparently once a living thing in-and-of itself, is basically a super Tekne version of a Whale Mother, one that births Inchoroi instead of Dunyain.

It's interesting to note also, that the Consult refers to ancient Inchoroi as the Old Fathers, while the ancient Dunyain women are referred to as the First Mothers. Very Lovecraftian, cosmic horror sort of thing there.

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gtownwr

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« Reply #126 on: May 16, 2017, 02:02:37 pm »
I didn't like the Whale-Mothers, but mainly because it didn't seem original.  It has been noted many times how they are basically just A-tanks and I was hoping for something that was less obviously influenced by another work.  Also, for reasons I can't fully explain, it felt like a cop out to me.  It didn't feel like the shortest path for the Dunyain, just the shortest path for Bakker to make the Dunyain seem more evil.  But if his goal was to make me question Khellus or the my assumptions about the Dunyain, it didn't really succeed.  I still feel the same about them as before.  The whale mothers just didn't land with me as a narrative tool.  So I guess it wasn't outrage or narrative disbelief for me, I just didn't agree with the choice.  But it is one of only a few "slip ups" in my favorite book series I have ever read, so I just grin and bear it.   ;D

incuroi

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« Reply #127 on: May 23, 2017, 03:02:16 am »
so i also wonder if all female dunyain are whale mothers? it is also stated that some dunyain bread for specific task but are genetic dead ends (as in they are not made to have children but to be workers), it could be also that the women who don't end up as whale mother are scene as defects and are just made to do other job or are treated as every other defects are. therefore it could be that serwe is just a defective dunyain, really not as illogical as people make it seem (especially since koringhus's son is also defective).

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« Reply #128 on: May 23, 2017, 10:46:23 am »
so i also wonder if all female dunyain are whale mothers? it is also stated that some dunyain bread for specific task but are genetic dead ends (as in they are not made to have children but to be workers), it could be also that the women who don't end up as whale mother are scene as defects and are just made to do other job or are treated as every other defects are.

Indeed, I've presented that idea to reconcile that Kellhus, even upon leaving Ishuäl, knows what a normal human woman looks like.

therefore it could be that serwe is just a defective dunyain, really not as illogical as people make it seem (especially since koringhus's son is also defective).

You mean Serwa?  Why would we regard her as defective?
I am a warrior of ages, Anasurimbor. . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury. -Cet'ingira

TaoHorror

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« Reply #129 on: May 23, 2017, 12:27:12 pm »
Agreed, she's 1/2 Dunyain, explaining away any perceived "shortfalls" of which could be considered "defective" by Kellhus. Are you referring to something specific in the story regarding her as "insufficient" in Kellhus' eyes? Maybe the kinda callous disregard for her life/safety/comfort submitting her to the Niom?
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incuroi

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« Reply #130 on: May 23, 2017, 11:45:25 pm »
no more so in that she is not of the breeding strain, as in were she full dunyain she would have been scene as defective. it's strange i know but i think she and theilopia are really just expressions of a recessive duyain trait and the breeding with esmi made them more so.

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« Reply #131 on: May 24, 2017, 12:59:26 pm »
no more so in that she is not of the breeding strain, as in were she full dunyain she would have been scene as defective. it's strange i know but i think she and theilopia are really just expressions of a recessive duyain trait and the breeding with esmi made them more so.

Well, it could well also be that what makes whale-mothers what they are is double recessive, so that any world-born woman would never produce one.
I am a warrior of ages, Anasurimbor. . . ages. I have dipped my nimil in a thousand hearts. I have ridden both against and for the No-God in the great wars that authored this wilderness. I have scaled the ramparts of great Golgotterath, watched the hearts of High Kings break for fury. -Cet'ingira

Anwurat

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« Reply #132 on: May 24, 2017, 07:13:31 pm »
so i also wonder if all female dunyain are whale mothers? it is also stated that some dunyain bread for specific task but are genetic dead ends (as in they are not made to have children but to be workers), it could be also that the women who don't end up as whale mother are scene as defects and are just made to do other job or are treated as every other defects are. therefore it could be that serwe is just a defective dunyain, really not as illogical as people make it seem (especially since koringhus's son is also defective).

I don't think so. Defective among the Dunyain in Ishual and defective half-Dunyains mean two different things. Defective Dunyain (like Koringhus's son) are those the Pragma or other Dunyain decided can't progress towards the absolute or pass on their genes to the next generation as far as I understand. The defectives that Moe drowned or Kellhus's children with Esmenet are a result of Dunyains mating with humans, which isn't natural for them. The Whale Mothers are just what female Dunyain look like now (IIRC at one point Koringhus explains to his son that Dunyain women once looked like Mimara, implication: they don't anymore). When Dunyains mate with each other they presumably don't have human women defectives any more than humans have whale mother defectives or other monstrosities like the ones Moe and Kellhus drowned when they have children normally.

Monkhound

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« Reply #133 on: June 25, 2017, 12:13:39 pm »
While rereading, I was surprised I didn't get Achamian's explanation about how the Wathi doll works and the connection (the colors in the two passages below are the match) with both the previous Aörsi chapters (about Kellhus shredding Proyas's identity) and Mimara's Judging Eye vision about the Whale Mothers and Kellhus sitting on his black throne.
I mean, the passage even starts with the vision of Nau-Cayuti meeting Shae.

Quote from: TGO hardcover page 147, all fonts except color are in the text
A pit bent into a circle, the most perfect of the Conserving Forms...
"But isn't trapping souls an ancient art?" she asked.
"It is..." Achamian replied. He thought of the Wathi doll he once owned - and used to save himself from the Scarlet Spires when everyone, including Esmenet, had thought him dead. He had been reluctant, then, to think of the proxy that had been trapped within it. Had it suffered? Was it yet another of his multitudinous sins?
One more blemish for Mimara to glimpse with her Judging Eye?
"But souls are exceedingly complicated," he continued. "Far more so than the crude sorceries used to trap them. The intricacies of identity are always sheared away. Memory. Faculty. Character. These are cast into the pit... Only the most base urges survive in proxies."
Which was what made them such willful slaves.
"So to have your soul caught..." She trailed, frowning.
"Is to be twice-damned..." he said, trailing at the behest of a queer reluctance. Few understood the monstrosity of sorcery better than he. "To have your hungers enslaved in the World, while your thoughts are tormented in the Outside."

Quote from: TGO hardcover page 45, all fonts except color are in the text
They seize him from time to time, the Sons of this place, and he feels the seams tear, hears his scream. But he cannot come apart - for unlike the Countless Dead, his heart beats still.
There is a head on a pole behind you.
[...]
And he sees that these things are meat, here. Love is meat, Hope is meat. Courage. Outrage. Anguish. All these things are meat - seared over fire, sucked clean of grease.
There is a head on a pole.

I also noticed a similarity between the quotes above in red, with the quotes in purple below. It's not exactly the same, but Kellhus/ the Dunyain/ TTT as an avatar of "The guy(s) bringing Hell on Earth". Stripping everything and everyone down to its bare utility, just like the "Sons of this Place" stripping down people's Thoughts (as opposed to Souls) to the bone.

Quote from: TGO hardcover page 159-161, all fonts except color are in the text
Women bred into monstrous instruments of procreation, until they had become little more than puches slung about their wombs.
The misery. The huffing and moaning. The mewling screams. The inhuman men filing to their asignations, utterly heartless and insensate. The slapping of hip and genitalia. The animality of coupling stripped to its essential germ, to the milking pitch of inseminations...
Sadism without desire. Cruelty - unimaginable cruelty - absent the least will to inflict suffering.
And evil that only the Inchoroi could surpass.
And when her gaze flinches, she sees that this crim is no aberration, but rather an inevitable and extreme implication of what rules the whole. [...] The fevious pitch of intellect, domineering, devoid of compassion or humility...
And the will - the blasphemous will most of all. The deranged hunger to become God.
[...]
Suddenly she sees Him, her stepfather, Anasûrimbor Kellhus I, the Holy Aspect-Emperor, high on his throne, wreathed in darkness and fury, a malignant cancer cast across the far corners of the world...
Doom incarnate.
Suddenly she sees the Truth of the old Wizard's terror. A Dûnyain ruled the World - a Dûnyain!.

The quotes in blue also cause me to wonder if trapping souls is the way the Inchoroi made the Nonmen immortal: I mean, it would explain their damnation and why their memories fail, with Hell feasting upon them. It'd also be ironic to have the Nonmen be strung between the World and the Outside/ Hell by the Inchoroi, since they revere passages and thresholds.
Cuts and cuts and cuts...

mostly.harmless

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« Reply #134 on: June 25, 2017, 06:44:04 pm »
Random thought I had, probably postulated by others here: could it be that Kellhus has been tethered to the outside since a certain point in the past (Daimos sessions with Iyokus?)?

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