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Your search for the tag 'circular time' yielded 27 results

  • 1

    Interview: Oct 21st, 1994

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    Jdieu

    I was curious if you could clear something up for me. The Dragon Lews Therin ended the Age of Legends, but Rand Al'Thor is the next Dragon, and he's not coming out of the Age of Legends?

    Robert Jordan

    Jdieu, could you clarify? I'm not sure I understand the question.

    Jdieu

    Well, you write that Lews Therin ends the Age of Legends, that time repeats itself, and I would think that Rand would in turn be ending the repeated Age of Legends, but it doesn't appear to BE a repeated Age of Legends.

    Robert Jordan

    It doesn't follow that simply because the Age that Lews Therin ended is now called the Age of Legends, that this age which Rand lives in in any way is a repeat of that particular age. What is/was the Age of Legends will repeat eventually, but not until the Wheel turns considerably further.

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  • 2

    Interview: Jan, 1991

    Starlog Interview (Verbatim)

    William B. Thompson

    He doesn't see the world he elaborates as unreal. Far from it.

    Robert Jordan

    "It exists in our past and our future. These were our legends, but because time is a wheel—according to Hindu legend—we are the seeds of their myths. Because it is a real world in my books, they have certain degrees of technology. The time in which the characters live is our future and our past. Part of what I'm exploring here is what the nature and source of our myths might be."

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  • 3

    Interview: Oct 17th, 1994

    Robert Jordan

    As regards Randland being the future/part of our world, he made a reference to the game 'Chinese Whispers'. He said that, like in the game, the happenings of our time/age will be changed/twisted [my words] into Randland's myths, and similarly the occurrences in Randland will/have become our myths.

    He also mentioned the fact that he tried to 'reverse-engineer' [his word] the current myths that we have into WoT's happenings/history, and our history into WoT's myths.

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  • 4

    Interview: Jun 27th, 1996

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    Rog in CT

    Because the Wheel of Time contains the Dark One's prison, and the Ages repeat with each revolution, then isn't humanity itself also imprisoned....unable to truly evolve?

    Robert Jordan

    No. :)

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  • 5

    Interview: Jun 27th, 1996

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    Scotty1489

    Is our earth a future or past turn of the wheel?

    Robert Jordan

    Both. The characters in the books are the source of many of our myths and legends and we are the source of many of theirs. You can look two ways along a wheel.

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  • 6

    Interview: Nov 11th, 1997

    Brandon from Mission Viejo

    Mr. Jordan, It's fairly common knowledge that the Dark One was bound by the Creator outside of the Pattern at the moment of creation. Would it then be safe to assume, after concepts brought to light in the new release, that the world before the opening of the prison never knew true evil? If so, then was each age before the opening of the Age of Legends different facets of some utopia? As well, without major conflict between good and evil, what caused ages to pass? Thanks.

    Robert Jordan

    Given that time is cyclic, you must assume that there is a time when the prison that holds the Dark One is whole and unbroken. There is a time when a hole is drilled into that prison and it is thus open to that degree. And there is a time when the opening has been patched in a make-shift manner. But following this line the cyclic nature of time means that we have at some time in the future inevitably a whole and unbroken prison again. Unless of course, the Dark One breaks free in which case all bets are off, kick over the table and run for the window.

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  • 7

    Interview: Nov 21st, 1998

    Rachel K. Warren

    Because I didn't bring my list of questions and I was really nervous, I asked the only question I could think of offhand: Would Birgitte know English?

    Robert Jordan

    Jordan said something to the fact that she would if she remembered it. I guess Birgitte is a really old soul. :-)

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  • 8

    Interview: Dec 12th, 2000

    CNN Chat (Verbatim)

    Moderator

    How did you develop the idea for the Wheel of Time saga, and where did you get the name?

    Robert Jordan

    The name comes out of Hindu mythology, where there is a belief that time is a wheel. Many older cultures believe that time is cyclic, that it repeats. In fact, I believe the best thing the ancient Greeks gave us was (the idea) that time was linear and change was possible.

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  • 9

    Interview: May, 2001

    Question

    At one point in the story we see Ishamael talking to Rand, and telling him that they have fought countless times in the past, but this is the final time. Is there anything about his Age that makes it special?

    Robert Jordan

    "No...every Age is repeated, there is nothing that makes this age any different from any other turnings of the Wheel. The Wheel is endless."

    SORILEA

    This leads me to believe that this will not be the LAST BATTLE ever. It probably just comes about every turning of the Wheel, and since it has been such a long time ago, no one ever remembers it.

    ROBERT JORDAN

    RJ explained that that is what a lot of the WOT is about, the source of Legends, and how some legends are based in such a small bit of real history, that no one really knows where they came from. If they are real, or just made up.

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  • 10

    Interview: Apr 4th, 2001

    Aan'allein

    In this same Age, in a different Turning of the Wheel of Time, could it be possible that it wouldn't be Rand's soul that was spun out as the Dragon, but for a different, female soul to take on this role?

    Robert Jordan

    Jordan said "Yes" then maybe a few more words and only then did I remember to actually put the recorder on again. If I remember correctly Avaeus taped those first few words on his digital camera however, so I'll see if I can add those exact words here.

    (transcription) ...it would have to be. Err, in the differences between the same Age in different turnings of the Wheel, are that.. as for an analogy: imagine two tapestries hanging on a wall, and you look at them from the back of the room to the front of the store. And to look at them, they look identical to you. But as you get closer, you begin to see differences. And if you get close enough, they don't look anything at all alike. That is the difference between the Ages. Between the Age in one Turning and the Age in another. So it's quite possible that someone other than Rand could be the reborn soul of the Dragon Reborn. [And that's the phrase that ended my jubilation.]

    Aan'allein

    It would be the same soul, or it would be a different soul?

    Robert Jordan

    It would be the same soul. That is, that is the belief of the world that I've set up, that it's the same soul. It's a soul of someone bound to the Wheel, which is spun out for the purposes, for the Wheel's purposes really, to attempt to re-balance the Weaving of the Pattern.

    Aan'allein

    But the soul would always be male. Souls don't change gender, so ...

    Robert Jordan

    ...so the soul of the Dragon Reborn is always going to be male, just as Birgitte's soul is always born as a woman, just as Ameresu's soul is always born as a woman. There are divisions here, and they are not interchangeable.

    Aan'allein

    [He actually pronounced this as Amatherisu. Anyone else find it curious that Jordan would place her on equal footing with Rand and Birgitte? The way he said this reminded me of Mother Therese, just like "Materese the Healer" (The Eye of the World, Chapter 4). Ameresu could most definitely be the same person as Materese. And the "The Healer" tag suddenly gets a lot more meaning, when thinking about how important she is to Jordan...]

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  • 11

    Interview: Apr 7th, 2001

    Aan'allein

    After that little episode Jordan asked:

    Robert Jordan

    Okay, so who would like to ask me any questions?

    Aan'allein

    People were still hesitant, so I was once again the first to raise my hand.

    Robert Jordan

    *smiling* Ah Sander... Of course Sander has a question.

    Aan'allein

    You talked before about the same Age in different Turnings, you can compare them to tapestries, they look alike at first sight. I was wondering, when at first sight, what would make a difference... Two points I'm really interested in. [*grumble* A stupid mobile phone was apparently not switched off here; yet again... I think Leiden was the only question session not interrupted by this.] Level of technology and gender related...if for example the roles of men and women were switched between Ages, would the tapestries still look alike at first sight?

    Robert Jordan

    Ah, but you're not gonna have that sort of switch. In this Age, how can you have a switch? One of the things for instance in the Age that I wrote. One of the things...For instance, I've been accused by some people of ignoring the feminist struggle. Well, there is no feminist struggle in this world, because there is no need for one. No one says a woman can't do this because she is a woman. A woman wants to be a blacksmith, she can learn to be a blacksmith, and she becomes a blacksmith, or a merchant or a wagon driver, or a worker on the docks, or wherever else. All of that took place, took place a long time ago. And they're very good at it. That sets the whole reasons why this should come about. Three thousand years ago the world was destroyed, by men. There is one group that has survived for that three thousand years, one organization that has managed to stick together for three thousand years, and have a great influence on history, and that is a group of women.

    Okay, so you just don't have, you just don't have it. To have a reversal of roles means... absolutely nothing.

    Aan'allein

    Okay, so the sociological results would always be the same, every Turning...?

    Robert Jordan

    Ah, that is one of the things, one of the things that would be a large, a very large change. Uhm, it's gonna be the smaller details, smaller things than that which change.

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  • 12

    Interview: Jan 16th, 2003

    Question

    Is the world of the books another world?

    Robert Jordan

    The intention is that the world of the books is our world at a different time. The conceit is that time is a wheel, so if you go far enough into our future or into our past, you come to the time in the books. Because of that, they have legends that originate in our time, and we have legends that originate in theirs.

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  • 13

    Interview: Feb 26th, 2003

    tarvalon.net Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    In the Wheel of Time mythos, how do extinct animals come back into existence when the Wheel comes back around?

    Robert Jordan

    Well, the world I created is based on the ideas and conceptions of the world from a roughly medieval viewpoint; time being circular and such. I didn't quite try to make it completely scientifically accurate, so there really is no answer for the question.

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  • 14

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    English has completely different [incomprehensible] vocabulary over the last couple of hundred years.

    Robert Jordan

    Oh sure, more than the last couple of hundred years English...

    Question

    [interrupts]: I mean, as taught(?) before as the last couple of hundred years as opposed to the Westlands. I mean, everybody spoke the Old Tongue.

    Robert Jordan

    English has absorbed words from other languages as recently as the last ten years.

    Question

    Well of course.

    Robert Jordan

    [interrupts] American English in particular is a sponge. The thing is that most Americans think they know no foreign words whatsoever. But if you sit them down with a test, you find that the average American knows twenty or thirty words of French, twenty or thirty words of German or, you know, maybe as many as fifty from Spanish—more than that from Spanish; probably knows close to a hundred words from Spanish—and between fifty and a hundred from Italian, and from other languages as well, because they have been absorbed into American English.

    Question

    But in the Wheel of Time world, you don’t have this flux of languages; you don't actually have many different languages. Even the Seanchan speak the same language.

    Robert Jordan

    [interrupts: And I set that up deliberately, because, you know, one of the things about a world that believes in a circular nature of time, is that they believe that there is no real possibility of change. It is one of the things that burden India, as you might know. Whatever I do to affect change...the Wheel of Time—which is as Hindu concept (from others as well, but the Hindus believe in that)—whatever I do to affect change, the Wheel will turn and all things will return to being as they are now. Therefore my effort to affect change is essentially useless. The great gift to the world of the ancient Greeks is that they were the FIRST culture to conceive of time as being linear, which allows for change. I can change things, I can change the future, and it will not return to what it is now, because time passes on; it does not double back. So I have a Wheel of Time world, where there is a belief in reincarnation and a belief that things will return to, not exactly the way they are now, but essentially as if there were two tapestries and you look at them from across the room, and they look identical, and it’s only when you get close that you can see the differences.

    I began to think also of the periods involved. Do you know why the mountains in this world are so incredibly rugged? Why there’s so few passes? These mountains are only a little over three thousand years old. There are no mountains in the world that are only three thousand years old. There are no mountains in the world that don’t have hundreds of thousands—millions—of years of wind and water erosion to have worn them down. THESE are mountains in their infancy. And in this world, be have had three distinct one thousand year periods, roughly from the Breaking of the World to the Trolloc Wars, from the Trolloc Wars to the War of the Hundred Years, from the War of the Hundred Years to today. Not quite a thousand years in each case, some were perhaps a little more. But in each case, what has happened is, you have had a mixing of the population during the turbulence—the nations breaking apart—a production of a lingua franca for these people to communicate with one another, and not enough time for that lingua degenerate into distinct languages which are no longer intelligible to one another.

    And that is enough so that the people of today could not understand the people from before the Trolloc Wars, who were speaking something very close to the Old Tongue, if not the Old Tongue itself. But they can understand the people of the Seanchan, who are speaking the language of Arthur Hawkwing’s time, which had not enough time to break down into separate languages, you see. And any effects of it breaking down into separate languages was modified by their getting together, so what’s happened over the space of just a thousand years is: they think each other have strong accents. It’s like I’m speaking to somebody who speaks English and he’s Jamaican, and I don’t understand him very easily, or he’s Nigerian. I don’t understand him very easily, and he’s a native English speaker—we can understand one another; it’s not easy, but we understand one another.

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  • 15

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    There is a widespread debate on the internet: you mentioned some tales of times like Mosk and Merk...does it have any connection with America and Moscow?

    Robert Jordan

    Yes. I thought that one was very obvious.

    Question

    (various mumblings about Anla)

    Harriet McDougal

    Anla, the Wise Counselor, she was the most popular advice columnist in the United States. Do you know Abby and Ann[?]? You write to the paper with a problem, you know, "What shall I do?", and she tells you. But her name was Ann Landers.

    Robert Jordan

    And she was the most widely distributed advice columnist for what? 40 years? In the United States, and syndicated in newspapers all over the country. Anla the Wise Counselor was Ann Landers.

    Question

    We would never have guessed it.

    Robert Jordan

    No, but I try not to throw in everything that that people are going to guess immediately.

    Harriet McDougal

    And Salya?

    Robert Jordan

    No, let's not talk about Salya. [Q confused.] Salya, who walked among the stars? Lenn, who went to the moon in the belly of a fire eagle? Yes? And his daughter Salya who walked among the stars? [much mumbling] No, she didn't—she wasn't on the Challenger. Sally Ride was the first female American astronaut. So, that's Salya, who in this thing has become the daughter of Lenn, who was John Glenn, who did not go to the moon in an eagle, but flies to the moon in the belly of a "fire eagle"...

    Harriet McDougal

    [interrupts] And his relationship to Salya. That's how it works.

    Robert Jordan

    But that's the whole thing, in these books: it's giving you hints, really, and it was the way it was giving you hints, clearly, as to the way things are working in the books, that these are the source of legends, but it's not in any way a straightforward retelling. What two or three men have done will be compressed to make one story, or what one man has done may be split up into two different men—this part's given to somebody else, and that part's given to that one—and he himself is completely forgotten. I put these things there in a way as a clue, a hint to you: this is the way things are working in these books, this is what has come of things that are somewhat recognizable from our time. What myths have risen out of them? So, you see how the distortion has happened. What myths are going to arise out of the events of these books? It's not going to be just another telling of what happens in these books—it's all going to be twisted and woven together in ways that nobody who was there at the events would ever recognize.

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  • 16

    Interview: Sep 4th, 2005

    Question

    In the Wheel of Time there is focus on events occurring again and again throughout history. Is it just history which is circular, or is it time itself which is in a loop?

    Robert Jordan

    If you think of history being in a loop, then time must be in a loop. The Greeks were the first, as far as we know, to think of time being linear which allows for change. Almost every other culture prior to them had believed in circular time, if time is a wheel there is no possibility of change. Whatever I change now, whatever injustices I correct, the wheel will inevitably return, the inequities will return, there is no possibility for change, therefore there is not impetus to change. So time and history are in a loop in this world, a large enough loop...ah...it is really quite immense.

    Question

    So, the sun will never go nova, will never die?

    Robert Jordan

    In this universe, no.

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  • 17

    Interview: Oct 5th, 2005

    Robert Jordan

    For ricktheinevitable, I have no plans to send Rand to Shara at present.

    Oh, yes. I think of time in this world as fixed circular, but with a drifting variation. There are slight differences in the Pattern each time through so that if you thought of the Pattern as a tapestry and held up two successive weaves, you couldn't see any differences from a distance, only close up, but the more time turnings between tapestries, the more changes are apparent. But the basic Pattern always remains the same.

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  • 18

    Interview: Oct 24th, 2005

    Kevin Dean

    I then asked, "Other than the Third Age, obviously, what events signal the end or the beginning of other Ages?"

    Robert Jordan

    He explained that SOME call the "current" Age the Third Age. He made it very clear that not everyone does, or has. He then said that Age ending events don't fit a certain set of criteria, but "you'll know it when you see it."

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  • 19

    Interview: Feb 5th, 2009

    Brandon Sanderson

    As one might expect, I've had a lot of feedback about the cameo in A Memory of Light charity drive. Many people are excited, some people are concerned. I'd like to take a few moments to answer a few general questions I've gotten.

    First off, if you want to vote for the nationality of the group, it's happening right now on Tarvalon.net. I won't say anything about who is winning here, though I'll link when the announcement is made. Why? Well, some people don't want to know.

    There are a LOT of hidden secrets in the Wheel of Time books like this. Everything from cameo appearances by Robert Jordan himself, to the names of street near where he lived, to legends about people in our own world, to appearances by fans. But I understand that some people don't want to know about most of these—they don't want to be pulled out of the world and the story. Therefore, I'll stay away from mentioning specifics here.

    The final cameos will be written in such a way that you won't be able to pick them out without knowing already. The thing about a book like this is that you NEED a lot of new names. You don't need to worry that the people who win will walk on and say "Hey, I won the cameo! Neat!" It will be more subtle than that.

    Remember, also, that there are very valid in-world reasons for this. According to the Wheel of Time mythology, we all live countless lives, over and over again, woven and re-woven into the Pattern. Because of that, people living on the Earth right now could very well be living again when the events of A Memory of Light come to pass. ;)

    Anyway, thank you all for your enthusiasm.

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  • 20

    Interview: Oct 21st, 1994

    AOL Chat 2 (Verbatim)

    Question

    I was wondering if you could comment on some of the clues that Randland (as we call it) seems to be written as a future earth.

    Robert Jordan

    Time is a wheel. If you look in one direction, you are looking at the past. If you just turn around and look in the other direction, you are looking at the future. The books are set in our future and in our past, depending on which way you look.

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  • 21

    Interview: Jun 12th, 2009

    Don

    I wanted to comment on the general impression that nothing BIG changes with each turning of the Wheel, i.e., history repeats itself. It's mentioned in the books and has been confirmed by RJ in interviews. I take issue with this, however. The Dark One can influence the world AND he is outside the Pattern and the turning of the Wheel. History doesn't repeat for the Dark One. In his quest to break the Wheel, why would he repeat the same steps over and over again, knowing they don't work? He remembers and learns with each turning of the Wheel. Because of this, I feel that the possibility exists that something "different" could happen, and that perhaps this something "different" might happen at the end of this series. No one really agrees with me, though. : (

    Brandon Sanderson

    I wanted to answer this one, since there has been a lot of talk about Warbreaker on the blog lately, and I wanted to do something for the Wheel of Time readers. Don, you're actually quite right. The Dark One CAN stop the Wheel from turning. Indeed, this is his goal. So far, history has repeated for the Dark One—but only because he has failed at his attempts to unravel the Pattern. Now, the theory websites can go into all of this in much more depth (and specificity) than I can. I'm no replacement for Robert Jordan when it comes to continuity and cannon within the Wheel of Time world. (Except where it comes to the last volume.) Many questions and thoughts like this are better sent toward Bob at the Encyclopedia WoT or on the forums at Theoryland or Dragonmount (or on any of the other excellent websites.) However, this particular topic was one I decided I needed to delve into during my research for the final books. If I didn't understand the Dark One's motivations and goals, I didn't think I could do the Last Battle justice. And so, I can state with reasonable authority that the Dark One is indeed capable of doing what you say. Though, it should be noted that in many cases, the Dark One's actions will repeat themselves—he will try the same ploys, though I can't speak for certain on how much he has varied those over the years. But I can promise that just because he has failed in the past doesn't mean he will fail again. This series could end with the Dark One breaking the Wheel and destroying the Pattern. That is what is at stake.

    Footnote

    The reader mail was referring to this RJ quote, in which RJ states that there is "nothing different" about this turning of the Wheel (see context). It's a hot topic of debate on the forums as to exactly how far the implications of the quote can be taken. Brandon is (unknowingly) contradicting RJ here (RJ himself was always rather open about the fact that fiction generally requires a suspension of disbelief because you know the good guys are going to win). So theoretically the Dark One COULD win this turning, but we know he's not going to.

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  • 22

    Interview: 1997

    Laura Wilson

    What about this notion of time as a wheel? Is that your idea?

    Robert Jordan

    No. It's not mine. It is from Hindu mythology that time is a wheel. But actually, most eastern cultures believed that time was circular. The Greeks gave us the great gift of believing that time was linear. And that's a great gift because if time is circular, if everything repeats in cycles, then change is impossible. No matter what you do, it's always going to come back to what is here. But if time is linear, then change is possible. But I wanted the circularity because I wanted, again, to go into the changes by distance. So, the myths and legends and a few of the stories that these people tell, well, some of them are based on our own current events, on the present. What they are doing is based on our myths and legends. So they are the source of our myths and legends, and we are the source of theirs.

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  • 23

    Interview: Nov 30th, 2000

    Matt Peck

    I asked that as the Wheel turned, each time an Age rolls around, is the Pattern exactly the same each time, or does it change?

    Robert Jordan

    He seemed to like this question. He likened it to a tapestry. When seen from a distance, each Third Age (to make it easy to track) has exactly the same pattern as the previous Third Age. However, when seen up close, there are differences. Threads are different, different nations exist, geography is different, different personalities rise to prominence. These changes, while minute in the grand scale of the Pattern, affect the Pattern enough so that while two iterations of an Age are almost the same, the first "Third Age" may be wildy different from the hundredth "Third Age".

    MATT PECK

    (My interpretation) Thus while some point out that since the Wheel keeps turning, there can't be anything new under the sun, in fact the "Age Lace", as it's referred to, is going somewhere. It may be that this really will be a "Final Battle", if the Age Lace is at this crux point and the Dark One wins. The Dark One says He'll break the Wheel and finally rule all time or whatever. This may be possible, however, it probably requires very specific victory conditions, as has been mentioned elsewhere. Other conditions may require more turning. But if the Light wins, it probably keeps turning.

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  • 24

    Interview: Jan 4th, 2013

    Dave Golder

    One of the themes of the series is the cyclical nature of time so is it ironic that you've inherited The Wheel of Time after Robert Jordan's death?

    Brandon Sanderson

    "I'm not unaware of how that relates to what's going on with me. One of the things that Robert Jordan did early on as an author was to work on the Conan books, so he was working on the stories of another author that had passed. Then he passes away and I ended up working on his story, so there was this cyclical thing going on there."

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  • 25

    Interview: 2013

    Twitter 2013 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Mike Scinto (23 January 2013)

    So, is it implied that once the Wheel turns again, this whole Dark One vs The World will go down again as well?

    Brandon Sanderson (23 January 2013)

    Everything in the WoT world repeats. Not always exactly the same, though.

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  • 26

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Galgóczi Móni

    Do you by chance believe in reincarnation?

    Robert Jordan

    No, I don't. Actually, in my dilettante way, I study the legends and myths and their similarities and their relationships to each other. With a long view, the definition of fantasy can be traced there because this genre uses supernatural things but treats them as if they were real. Many people write fantasy, deliberately or not—well, they don't admit it, and what is more, they deny it because it is not really considered high literature. For example, I think the art of magical realism belongs to the fantasy genre, but I'm sure if I were to say so to one of these authors, he or she would not be happy.

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