Influences on TSA

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MSJ

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« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2018, 02:36:56 pm »
In some of his early interviews, Bakker used to talk a lot about being inspired by writer called Harold Lamb https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_Lamb, and in particular one of his books called Iron Men and Saints.

Because, its going to be done in the next book in the series, I believe. She asked about it after the publication of CoBN.

ETA: Sorry, meant to quote your last post
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,

Old Gnostic Fool

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« Reply #16 on: May 20, 2018, 01:19:43 am »
ToT, it was in The Traitor Son Cycle, by Miles Cameron. In the 3rd or 4th book, after a battle The Red Knight speaks with his commanders and one is named Kellhus. I liked to think it was a TSA homage. Who knows, though?

Likely, since the name Kellhus is very distinct.

Old Gnostic Fool

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« Reply #17 on: May 20, 2018, 01:26:46 am »
I get the Dune and LotR analogies....not the ASOIAF though. Really in fantasy, you can find similarities if you want to. I enjoyed seeing another author use Kellhus as a minor, minor character. I felt that was a homage to TSA....but was it? Ive no idea.

I got it from Wertzone's article about Golgotterath.

Quote
The Second Apocalypse fuses real-life history, particularly that of the Crusades and Alexander the Great, to religious imagery and mythology, as well as drawing in a strong science fiction focus, with side-stories exploring everything from quantum physics to genetic engineering to Biblical numerology. But Bakker was also inspired by more obvious sources: J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, Frank Herbert’s Dune and (much later in the developmental process), George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones. In particular, Tolkien resonated strongly with Bakker, whose own creation myths, immortal Nonmen and horrible monsters echo many elements found in the earlier work.


MSJ

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« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2018, 12:26:41 pm »
Old Gnostic Fool, I just dont see it. I mean maybe some of the stuff we're reading now. The political intrigue and the likes. Maybe, characters unexpectedly dying? Xerius? Other than that I dont get the parallels. They dont remind me of each other at all.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 12:43:01 pm by MSJ »
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,

ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #19 on: May 21, 2018, 09:45:04 pm »
Old Gnostic Fool, I just dont see it. I mean maybe some of the stuff we're reading now. The political intrigue and the likes. Maybe, characters unexpectedly dying? Xerius? Other than that I dont get the parallels. They dont remind me of each other at all.

I love both ASOIAF and TSA, but I agree with MSJ here, I don't think there are any relevant similarities to be found between the two. Many fantasy series feature political intrigue, characters unexpectedly dying, "the human heart in conflict with itself" and so on.
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« Reply #20 on: May 22, 2018, 02:05:44 pm »
I have a hunch, which I can't actually articulate in a fully fleshed out sense at the moment, that there is a relationship between the biblical figure of Abraham and Kellhus.  What spurred me if the ending of TUC and how it could be contrued that Kellhus is in an "Abrahamic position" in having to sacrifice (kill) little Kel, as Abraham was in sacrificing Isaac.  Thing is, Abraham is willing, where Kellhus, for whatever reasons, is not.
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

ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #21 on: May 22, 2018, 06:38:22 pm »
I have a hunch, which I can't actually articulate in a fully fleshed out sense at the moment, that there is a relationship between the biblical figure of Abraham and Kellhus.  What spurred me if the ending of TUC and how it could be contrued that Kellhus is in an "Abrahamic position" in having to sacrifice (kill) little Kel, as Abraham was in sacrificing Isaac.  Thing is, Abraham is willing, where Kellhus, for whatever reasons, is not.

This is an intriguing idea considering this bit from the TUC glossary (underlined the relevant part):
Quote
Mount Kinsureah--The legendary "Mountain of Summoning" where, according to The Chronicle of the Tusk, the Prophet Angeshraël sacrificed Oresh, the youngest of his sons by Esmenet, to demonstrate his conviction to the Tribes of Men. The so-called Oreshalat (Issue-of-Oresh) constitutes one of the most important crossroads of theology, or religious speculation, with philosophy, rational or sorcerous speculation. Of particular interest is the strand called the Imboreshalat (Issue-of-Oresh-if), which asks what follows from Angeshraël's resolution by exploring what follows from a possible failure of resolve, where Angeshraël tells his tribe that the Gods staid his hand.
Very interesting addition (when compared to the TTT glossary, which lacked the last 2 sentences of this entry), considering that Angeshraël and Oresh are the in-universe Abraham and Isaac analogues...
"But you’ve simply made the discovery that Thelli made—only without the benefit of her unerring sense of fashion."
-Anasûrimbor Kayûtas (The Great Ordeal, chapter 13)

"You prefer to believe women victims to their passions, but we can be at least as calculating as you. Love does not make us weak, but strong."
-Ykoriana of the Masks (The Third God, chapter 27)

TLEILAXU

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« Reply #22 on: May 22, 2018, 07:15:40 pm »
Nice little tidbit there!

ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #23 on: May 22, 2018, 07:18:25 pm »
Nice little tidbit there!

It's amazing, what you can find when looking through the glossaries for content to add to the wiki pages! ;)

This is also great because it's like a double (or nested) parallel - Kellhus and KelSammi are parallels to Angeshraël and Oresh who are themselves parallels to Abraham and Isaac.
"But you’ve simply made the discovery that Thelli made—only without the benefit of her unerring sense of fashion."
-Anasûrimbor Kayûtas (The Great Ordeal, chapter 13)

"You prefer to believe women victims to their passions, but we can be at least as calculating as you. Love does not make us weak, but strong."
-Ykoriana of the Masks (The Third God, chapter 27)

TLEILAXU

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« Reply #24 on: May 22, 2018, 07:21:05 pm »
Nice little tidbit there!

It's amazing, what you can find when looking through the glossaries for content to add to the wiki pages! ;)

This is also great because it's like a double (or nested) parallel - Kellhus and KelSammi are parallels to Angeshraël and Oresh who are themselves parallels to Abraham and Isaac.
In a sense, God really did stay Kellhus' hand, a God of Nothing...
« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 10:32:54 pm by TLEILAXU »

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« Reply #25 on: May 22, 2018, 08:11:03 pm »
Right, I mean, Bakker of course turns Abraham on his head in Angeshraël because, we are lead to believe, he did in fact sacrifice Oresh (which he may or may not have actually done).  Angeshraël is an interesting figure, because we know that the Tusk was not given by the Gods, which calls into question the whole story, really.  Who did he encounter then?

But the issue of Kellhus goes a bit deeper too.  Into the realm of the non-hypothetical "ImbKELalat" in this case.  Or it's reverse, whatever that would be called.  What if Kellhus did sacrifice Kel?

And further, something that Bakker has alluded to extra-textually, but the role the Logos has in determining Kellhus failure.  I don't think it is suffient, to MSJ chagrin, to figure that love is all that kept Kellhus from killing Kel.  It's a lot more, because love of Esmenet was thrown to the wind before.  And his other children were ripe for sacrifice.  It could be that little Kel was all Esmenet "had left" in a sense, that he was her "favorite."  But I think it is deeper than than, that Kellhus' sense that all things were possible through the Logos that made him think he could win without that ultimate sacrifice (not Kel, but rather Esmenet's last bit of faith in him).
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

ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #26 on: May 22, 2018, 09:09:36 pm »
Right, I mean, Bakker of course turns Abraham on his head in Angeshraël because, we are lead to believe, he did in fact sacrifice Oresh (which he may or may not have actually done).  Angeshraël is an interesting figure, because we know that the Tusk was not given by the Gods, which calls into question the whole story, really.  Who did he encounter then?

Sure, I used the word "analogues" there but I did not mean perfect parallels, of course. Angeshraël has been established since PON as Bakker's darker take on Abraham. Whether or not this did indeed happen we don't know, but I think that ultimately it doesn't matter in the long term. The seeds were sown in PON and the parallel was there all along.
Given the whole history with the Inchoroi's involvement in the Tusk, I'm guessing the "God" was Aurang. (Or maybe another Inchoroi? Can't recall if any others besides Aurang and Aurax were still around at the time Angeshraël supposedly lived.)


But the issue of Kellhus goes a bit deeper too.  Into the realm of the non-hypothetical "ImbKELalat" in this case.  Or it's reverse, whatever that would be called.  What if Kellhus did sacrifice Kel?

I think it could still be called the "Issue-of-Kel-if" since it's still the opposite of what actually happened (it's only that Angeshraël and Kellhus made opposite choices).
If Kellhus had sacrificed KelSammi (from what we as readers know), things would have much better for humanity as a whole in the long term. Assuming Kellhus or any other Anasûrimbor wouldn't have activated the Carapace when inserted (as Bakker's AMA leads us to believe), the Ordeal would have still presumably suffered heavy losses, and Kellhus would have still died (as there'd be no KelSammi to stop the assassination at the Last Whelming). However, in this alternate timeline, the No-God does not rise (at least not for a long time), all the infants that are/will be stillborn due to its existence aren't, cities are not laid waste to, etc. Ultimately, thousands of lives are saved.
Esmenet would have hated Kellhus for it, true, but like I said above, Kellhus would probably have died anyway, and the net result would still be positive for mostly everyone.


And further, something that Bakker has alluded to extra-textually, but the role the Logos has in determining Kellhus failure.  I don't think it is suffient, to MSJ chagrin, to figure that love is all that kept Kellhus from killing Kel.  It's a lot more, because love of Esmenet was thrown to the wind before.  And his other children were ripe for sacrifice.  It could be that little Kel was all Esmenet "had left" in a sense, that he was her "favorite."  But I think it is deeper than than, that Kellhus' sense that all things were possible through the Logos that made him think he could win without that ultimate sacrifice (not Kel, but rather Esmenet's last bit of faith in him).

I don't think love is really in play here either. I tend to agree with the theory that Kellhus might have mistaken the rising darkness from the Ajokli possession for love for Esmenet, since he couldn't realize where it originated from (I admit he could have felt some vague fondness for her, but no more than that). He had every reason to kill KelSammi after he (apparently) killed an innocent Believer-King in cold blood, yet he did not. Maybe he felt that he was close enough to his goal that it wouldn't have mattered anyway if he had killed Kel or not. Maybe Ajokli's interference or the "love" he thought he felt led him to him making the wrong decision. I'm still quite unsure about his actual reasons.
"But you’ve simply made the discovery that Thelli made—only without the benefit of her unerring sense of fashion."
-Anasûrimbor Kayûtas (The Great Ordeal, chapter 13)

"You prefer to believe women victims to their passions, but we can be at least as calculating as you. Love does not make us weak, but strong."
-Ykoriana of the Masks (The Third God, chapter 27)

SmilerLoki

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« Reply #27 on: May 22, 2018, 09:53:40 pm »
And further, something that Bakker has alluded to extra-textually, but the role the Logos has in determining Kellhus failure.  I don't think it is suffient, to MSJ chagrin, to figure that love is all that kept Kellhus from killing Kel.  It's a lot more, because love of Esmenet was thrown to the wind before.  And his other children were ripe for sacrifice.  It could be that little Kel was all Esmenet "had left" in a sense, that he was her "favorite."  But I think it is deeper than than, that Kellhus' sense that all things were possible through the Logos that made him think he could win without that ultimate sacrifice (not Kel, but rather Esmenet's last bit of faith in him).
I extremely like how well-thought-out this argument is, considering proposed parallels. But I see problems with it. First of all, we are led to believe that Kellhus doesn't pursue the Logos anymore. He poses that he abandoned it for the pursuit of the subjective, the divine and its domain, the Outside.

The second problem I see is one of the most important morals of the story, the one that holds Kellhus, with all his gifts, as still very much fallible. Him "sparing" Kelmomas is portrayed as a mistake, as something he didn't - in all likelihood couldn't - foresee leading to the later catastrophic failure of the Great Ordeal.

And lastly, I don't think Kellhus spared him solely out of sentiment. He still considered Esmenet an asset, and killing Kelmomas would have severely limited her usability. To be more clear, the role of sentiment in that decision, while driving (as in, there wouldn't have been such a decision without sentiment), is eclipsed by other reasons. Which is always the case for Kellhus, he is nothing if not perpetually scheming. This was one of his schemes gone wrong as opposed to a huge, culture-defining moment. Essentially, it's a small "fate-of-the-world"-defining moment, completely in line with the ever-present realism of TSA, where accidents drive history no less, if not flat-out more, than planning and reason.

In conclusion, I think the noted parallel is unintentional on Bakker's part, but existing in your reading of the series. The series gained it through your interpretation.

I tend to agree with the theory that Kellhus might have mistaken the rising darkness from the Ajokli possession for love for Esmenet
Now, this is very interesting. My first instinct is to strongly reject this theory as diminishing Kellhus's role at the end of TUC to the point of insignificance. Basically, like saying there was more or less only Ajokli there, with Kellhus no more than a husk making some blunders in its rare moments of something approaching lucidity. Or maybe we should consider a God manifesting through a certain human to be influenced by that particular human's psyche? So Ajokli-Kellhus is still Kellhus in many respects, just as Ajokli-Cnaiur is still Cnaiur.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 10:12:44 pm by SmilerLoki »

MSJ

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« Reply #28 on: May 23, 2018, 12:48:54 am »
I dont think love kept Kellhus from killing Kelmommas.... I do think his love for Esme played a very huge part in it though. I honestly thought upon first reas of TUC that...

A) Kellhus would kill him in those first couple of chapters. He knew Kel was....wrong. I thought it certain.

B) If Kellhus didn't kill him, I was nearly 100% sure Esme would. I thought that her love for her children, expressed throughout TAE wouldnt be enough to stop her from killing him. She knew he was responsible.
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,

MSJ

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« Reply #29 on: May 23, 2018, 12:52:14 am »
Quote from:  SmilerLoki
Now, this is very interesting. My first instinct is to strongly reject this theory as diminishing Kellhus's role at the end of TUC to the point of insignificance. Basically, like saying there was more or less only Ajokli there, with Kellhus no more than a husk making some blunders in its rare moments of something approaching lucidity. Or maybe we should consider a God manifesting through a certain human to be influenced by that particular human's psyche? So Ajokli-Kellhus is still Kellhus in many respects, just as Ajokli-Cnaiur is still Cnaiur.

And, also to ToT's post, ive laid out proof that Kellhus was in love with both Serwe and Esme, which is away before the events of TUC...
« Last Edit: May 23, 2018, 01:05:02 am by MSJ »
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,