PDA

View Full Version : Bore, balefire


confused at birth
09-03-2011, 03:12 PM
why did no one know what would happen when the bore was made?

Why didnt anyone try to stop it? If Elaida can see the future why couldnt someone back then?

Davian93
09-03-2011, 07:33 PM
why did no one know what would happen when the bore was made?

Why didnt anyone try to stop it? If Elaida can see the future why couldnt someone back then?

Because no one was even aware of the DO's existence as it had been too many turnings of the Wheel since it had happened. Also, they were desperate for a new power source as even with Linking, there were limits to what the AoL AS could do with the One Power. Thus, it seemed like a great new source of power when Mierin and Beidomen drilled the Bore.

Oops.

As to why there were no Foretellings...no idea.

confused at birth
09-03-2011, 07:38 PM
also that would have made for a very short book:D

GonzoTheGreat
09-04-2011, 04:32 AM
Plus, the DO is outside the Pattern, so it is quite possible that his interference can not be predicted until he has started it.

Davian93
09-04-2011, 10:16 AM
Plus, the DO is outside the Pattern, so it is quite possible that his interference can not be predicted until he has started it.

That's a good point. If he can't touch the pattern, there is no way to foretell him touching it.

The Unreasoner
09-04-2011, 10:26 AM
I wonder if a channeler could make a ter'angreal or tied off weave designed to do whatever OP experiments were necessary. That way, a channeler could just balefire it if something went wrong. Like releasing the DO and destroying the Sharom.

Or a self-balefiring weave, set with specific triggers?

And I always agreed with Gonzo on the Foretelling issue.

Zombie Sammael
09-04-2011, 10:48 AM
I wonder if a channeler could make a ter'angreal or tied off weave designed to do whatever OP experiments were necessary. That way, a channeler could just balefire it if something went wrong. Like releasing the DO and destroying the Sharom.

Or a self-balefiring weave, set with specific triggers?

And I always agreed with Gonzo on the Foretelling issue.

This would be a great idea, but I believe Balefire (as a largely combat based weave) wouldn't even have been known of until the War of the Power, or at earliest the collapse. Otherwise, that's almost certainly what they would have done. Of course, given that the DO is outside the Pattern, the Bore to a certain extent is too, so simply balefiring the thing that made it might not necessarily reseal it. Even though the thing that made it would not exist anymore, the bore might be immune to any changes as a result of that.

GonzoTheGreat
09-04-2011, 11:07 AM
I wonder if a channeler could make a ter'angreal or tied off weave designed to do whatever OP experiments were necessary. That way, a channeler could just balefire it if something went wrong.Isn't that what grad students are for?

Of course, the DO also knew that trick, so he destroyed the entire laboratory as soon as he was able, thus preventing your neat fail safe from working.

The Unreasoner
09-04-2011, 11:20 AM
Aren't weaves generally not affected by physical phenomena? And, both Mierin and Beidomon survived, a durable ter'angreal could have too.

GonzoTheGreat
09-04-2011, 11:27 AM
Aren't weaves generally not affected by physical phenomena? And, both Mierin and Beidomon survived, a durable ter'angreal could have too.Neither of them were there at the time; they were probably preparing a press conference or something.

Also, if you deliberately make a ter'angreal as a fail safe, then not making it too durable might be a good idea.

The Unreasoner
09-04-2011, 11:34 AM
Like blowing a fuse?
And, is there a quote on Mierin and Beidomon not being there?

Isabel
09-04-2011, 01:50 PM
The indication is that they both were there. Remember, the Aiel flashback in which it suggested that Mierin and Beidomon both were there.

Sarevok
09-04-2011, 02:19 PM
I wonder if a channeler could make a ter'angreal or tied off weave designed to do whatever OP experiments were necessary. That way, a channeler could just balefire it if something went wrong. Like releasing the DO and destroying the Sharom.

Or a self-balefiring weave, set with specific triggers?

And I always agreed with Gonzo on the Foretelling issue.
The channeler would have to balefire whoever did the offending bad stuff. Any thing you use to do the experiment with, would be, well... a THING, which doesn't have a thread to be burned back.

Terez
09-04-2011, 02:41 PM
Everything has a thread, Sare. Even inanimate objects get the temporal effects of balefire.

Weird Harold
09-04-2011, 07:56 PM
Everything has a thread, Sare. Even inanimate objects get the temporal effects of balefire.

That doesn't match the description of the Balefire used in the Panarch's Museum. The disply cases did NOT demonstrate a temporal effect when they were destroyed.

The Unreasoner
09-04-2011, 08:26 PM
That doesn't match the description of the Balefire used in the Panarch's Museum. The disply cases did NOT demonstrate a temporal effect when they were destroyed.

Were the display cases really doing anything that could be undone?

Rand al'Fain
09-04-2011, 09:15 PM
Were the display cases really doing anything that could be undone?
Taking up dust maybe? Spots on the walls behind them? Really, not much except for the actual books on them.

finnssss
09-04-2011, 09:25 PM
That doesn't match the description of the Balefire used in the Panarch's Museum. The disply cases did NOT demonstrate a temporal effect when they were destroyed.


She's referring to Nynaeve's boat in ED that was Balefired by Moggy.

Terez
09-04-2011, 09:59 PM
I'm referring to a recently-discovered (but old) RJ quote:

Letter to Thomas Howard - 14 March 1997 (http://www.theoryland.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=143434#poststop)

Q: What the hell is up with balefire (in regards to Nynaeve and the boat)? The main issue with this was whether or not balefire burned inanimate objects back through time in addition to living creatures.
RJ: Yes it does.
I'm guessing that inanimate objects are not spatially cohesive, hence the different physical effects, but they are affected temporally, which is usually not even noticeable since inanimate objects are generally inanimate.

Weird Harold
09-04-2011, 10:34 PM
Were the display cases really doing anything that could be undone?

The display cases were holding up the cuendillar pieces that didn't fall until after the cases were balefired. If there were a temporal effect then the things the inanimate objects were holding up would have fallen at the time the cases (and pillars) were burned back to rather than when they were balefired.

Terez, I know you were referring to that quote, but that quote disagrees with the text of the books; both the display cases in the panarch's museum and the explicit explanation in the text that Nyneave's boat jumped 200 paces backwards and sank before it was balefired "because the oarsmen were burned back" (owtte)

Given a conflict between interview quotes and the descriptions in the text, I'll go with the text every time.

Terez
09-04-2011, 10:38 PM
Terez, I know you were referring to that quote, but that quote disagrees with the text of the books; both the display cases in the panarch's museum and the explicit explanation in the text that Nyneave's boat jumped 200 paces backwards and sank before it was balefired "because the oarsmen were burned back" (owtte)
That explains why the boat jumped back, but not why it was already filled with water.

Weird Harold
09-04-2011, 10:42 PM
I'm guessing that inanimate objects are not spatially cohesive, hence the different physical effects, but they are affected temporally, which is usually not even noticeable since inanimate objects are generally inanimate.

I know of no example where a temporal adjustment was caused by balefiring of an inanimate object. If there is no noticeable temporal adjustment described anywhere, then as far as the books are concerned, there is no temporal adjustment.

Weird Harold
09-04-2011, 10:58 PM
That explains why the boat jumped back, but not why it was already filled with water.

The text of the books explictly attributes the sinking to the death of the boatmen and the temporal effect of their death.

Because she had jerked, the balefire she meant to slice through cabin and passenger instead had sliced diagonally through the middle of the boat, about where the oarsmen had stood, and the bodyguards. Because the rowers had been burned out of the Pattern before the balefire struck, the two halves of the craft were now a good hundred paces back up the river. Then again, perhaps it was not a complete disaster. Because that slice from the boat’s center had gone at the same time the boatmen really died, the river had had minutes to rush in. The two parts of the boat sank out of sight in a great froth of bubbles even as her eyes shifted to them, carrying their passenger to the depths.

Kimon
09-04-2011, 11:04 PM
Here's the long version of Sanderson's commentary on the topic, including some comments/observations from Terez:

Marie Curie: Even a stone in a wall has a thread in the Pattern, right? You said so...
Brandon: As I understand it, Robert Jordan specifically said that even inanimate objects have a thread.
Marie: So, that explains why when, say, a stone pillar is balefired, only the portion that balefire hits disintegrates...
Brandon: Right...
Marie: ...because all of those little bits would have their own threads...
Brandon: Theoretically. And I was wrong on that for a while - I had to go back and look at interviews before I...[to Terez] Were you the one that sent me that?
Terez: Yeah, I tweeted that to you...
Brandon: Yeah...the boat that Nynaeve was on that got balefired...
Marie: She pointed out that inanimate objects...their threads are burned back. But that also explains why a person who has one thread tied to their soul would be completely eliminated by balefire.
Brandon: Mmmhmm.
Marie: So why did their clothes go away?
Terez: (laughs)
Brandon: Balefire does spread a bit, from what I've read.
Marie: Then why doesn't it for the column?
Brandon: It does, but it's like, you know...just a little bit.
Marie: Right, but if you use a pencil-thin bit of balefire, right, and I shot your shirt, why would the whole shirt disappear?
Brandon: Um, if it goes through and hits you, then you disintegrate, and it will spread out from you.
Marie: Then, that doesn't explain Nynaeve's boat.2
Brandon: No, it doesn't. ... I will be perfectly honest with you. I've worked through and tried to figure out the rules of balefiring inanimate objects quite a bit...because we've got the whole thing with Nynaeve and...
Marie: The rowers.
Brandon: Yeah. Well no, not even that...earlier than that with the balefire rod that's like cutting swaths through the palace in Tanchico, and it's just cutting lines through the palace, just slicing big holes...
Marie: Right. That's the stone pillars...the multiple threads...
Terez: It did the same thing in Caemlyn with Rand and Rahvin.
Brandon: Yeah. And that's searing little lines, but then you hit something living, and it all *poofs*. It actually becomes motes...like it hits and it spreads to the full, living thing, and then *poof* that all goes away. And so...the clothes are something I hadn't even thought of, but balefire does seem to spread a little bit...

Seems like even Brandon finds it confusing, but this all started me thinking about a potential medical use. Would Rand's dual-wound (from Ishamael and Fain) count as an actual part of him and hence a part of his thread in the pattern, or would it be external, like a parasite or inanimate infection. Could it be balefired without balefiring him?

The Unreasoner
09-04-2011, 11:18 PM
The text of the books explictly attributes the sinking to the death of the boatmen and the temporal effect of their death.

Actually it looks like it attributes it to the missing central slice, and only sets a time with the rowers.

As for Tanchico, maybe it was incredibly weak balefire.

Weird Harold
09-04-2011, 11:32 PM
Here's the long version of Sanderson's commentary on the topic, including some comments/observations from Terez:

So because Terez got it wrong, Sanerson got it wrong? :D

None of Brandon's depictions of Balefire are consistent with RJ's descriptions of Balefire, so I discount Brandon's explanations except as applied to his depections of Balefire -- they are completely irrelevant to RJ's depictions.

Seems like even Brandon finds it confusing, but this all started me thinking about a potential medical use. Would Rand's dual-wound (from Ishamael and Fain) count as an actual part of him and hence a part of his thread in the pattern, or would it be external, like a parasite or inanimate infection. Could it be balefired without balefiring him?

I think balfire might have been effective -- if anyone had Rand's level of control over it -- within the first couple of hours, but beyond some short period of time, the level of balefire required is beyond anyone except Rand and the CK.

If the Balefire can't burn the infection back before Rand was infected, simple Fire or other, less-dangerous-than-balefire, weave of pure destruction would work as well as balefire.

Kimon
09-04-2011, 11:44 PM
I think balfire might have been effective -- if anyone had Rand's level of control over it -- within the first couple of hours, but beyond some short period of time, the level of balefire required is beyond anyone except Rand and the CK.

If the Balefire can't burn the infection back before Rand was infected, simple Fire or other, less-dangerous-than-balefire, weave of pure destruction would work as well as balefire.

Wouldn't the temporal effect relate more if one was attempting to balefire Fain and Ishamael (The latter would be more difficult. Could you even balefire back to before he was dead and in another body, regardless of how strong you and your balefire were?) back far enough to before they caused the wounds? But if you instead targeted the wound itself, rather than the cause of the wounds, and erased it instead of targeting the causes, wouldn't the temporal factor be a non-issue? Flinn did seal the wounds away from him, isolating them, so wouldn't that make it easier to target it exclusively?

Weird Harold
09-04-2011, 11:49 PM
Actually it looks like it attributes it to the missing central slice, and only sets a time with the rowers.

The boatmen's destruction created a paradox and the Pattern resolved it by making the damage to the boat coincident with the death of the boatmen -- the slice in the boat happened whent he boatmen died, not minutes later when Moggy balefired them.

I know of no instance where an inanimate object was balefired that created a paradox without the involvement of some animate/senntient victim as well.

As for Tanchico, maybe it was incredibly weak balefire.

The fluted rod does not sound as if it is weak.

It was almost a relief to read of a fluted rod of black stone, a full pace in length, that produced balefire, with the notation DANGEROUS AND ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO CONTROL writ so strong in Verin's hand that it tore the paper in two places.

In fact, IIRC. in past discussions of Balefire, I think the black fluted rod prodices the second or thrird most powerful balefire beam after Rand's destruction of Rahvin and Rand's destruction of Natrim's Barrow -- Depending on whether the discussion was before or after Natrim's Barrow.

Weird Harold
09-05-2011, 12:01 AM
But if you instead targeted the wound itself, rather than the cause of the wounds, and erased it instead of targeting the causes, wouldn't the temporal factor be a non-issue?

Without the temporal effect, Balefire is just another destructive weave, harder to control and consequently more dangerous, but no more effective than fire or ice used as a scalpel.

The only advantage to using balefire is the temporal effect. If the temporal effect is a nonissue then Balefire drops to fifth or sixth choice of destructive weave.

Tamyrlin
09-05-2011, 12:16 AM
Want to move the balefire discussion out to its own thread?

Very interesting and much appreciated.

Terez
09-05-2011, 12:47 AM
So because Terez got it wrong, Sanerson got it wrong?
No. I tweeted him the link to the letter from RJ, and told him I was apathetic about the debate.

ETA:

Mike on Twitter - 19 January 2011 (http://twitter.com/MrMightyMax/status/27770620989153280)
What would have happened if someone were to balefire Verin's cup of poison to remove its existence when it was consumed?
Brandon (http://twitter.com/BrandSanderson/status/27869269710610432)
So far, I believe we've only see Balefire used to remove living things from the Pattern that way. Am I wrong? @Terez27 (http://twitter.com/Terez27)
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/27916858858405890)
There has been some serious debate over Nynaeve and her boat. Some think the rowers caused...
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/27916982170943488)
...the temporal anomaly, while some think it had to be the boat itself. I forget the arguments...
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/27926106401153024)
I remember the argument now. The boat was filled w/water at the moment of balefire, which rowers don't explain.
Later Marie found that report, so I tweeted it to him as well.

GonzoTheGreat
09-05-2011, 03:55 AM
The only advantage to using balefire is the temporal effect. If the temporal effect is a nonissue then Balefire drops to fifth or sixth choice of destructive weave.Another advantage is that protecting yourself from balefire is not possible. All you can do is dodge. Well, unless you happen to have Callandor in your hands, at least. But that was anomalous enough to freak out Ishamael.

kielbasaj
09-05-2011, 04:13 AM
Another advantage is that protecting yourself from balefire is not possible. All you can do is dodge. Well, unless you happen to have Callandor in your hands, at least. But that was anomalous enough to freak out Ishamael.

Eh, Perrin stopped Balefire in TAR, though it's not largely relevant to this discussion, I thought I'd put it out there.

GonzoTheGreat
09-05-2011, 04:59 AM
Yes, but that was only dreamstuff. I'm sure Mat wouldn't be overly bothered by balefire either.

The only warning he had was the sudden snarl that contorted Dashiva’s face. Dashiva channeled, and with no time to think, Rand wove – as so often, he did not know what; something dredged from Lews Therin’s memories; he was not even sure he created the weave entirely himself, or whether Lews Therin snatched at saidin– Air and Fire and Earth woven around himself just so. The fire that leaped from Dashiva erupted, shattering marble, flinging Rand back down the hallway, bounding and rolling in his cocoon.
That barrier would keep out anything short of balefire. Including air to breathe. Rand released it panting, scraping along the floor, with the crash of the explosions still ringing in the air, dust still hanging and bits of broken marble tumbling. As much as for breath, though, he let it go because what could keep the Power out, kept it in. Before he stopped sliding, he channeled Fire and Air, but woven much differently than for Folded Light. Thin red wires leaped from his left hand, fanning out as they sliced through the intervening stone toward where Dashiva and the others had been standing.The phrase "anything short of balefire" here seems pertinent. Does anyone know a more potent weave?

Zombie Sammael
09-05-2011, 05:17 AM
Yes, but that was only dreamstuff. I'm sure Mat wouldn't be overly bothered by balefire either.

The phrase "anything short of balefire" here seems pertinent. Does anyone know a more potent weave?

Everyone should remember that cuendillar cannot be balefired. The fact might be more relevant to a discussion of cuendillar than one of balefire, but it is nonetheless interesting. It could be said that the weave that makes cuendillar is thus more potent than balefire.

GonzoTheGreat
09-05-2011, 05:51 AM
Everyone should remember that cuendillar cannot be balefired. The fact might be more relevant to a discussion of cuendillar than one of balefire, but it is nonetheless interesting. It could be said that the weave that makes cuendillar is thus more potent than balefire.I'm not sure it would be a very practical offensive weapon.

Then again, a Myrddraal with cuendillar legs might be somewhat hampered in his movements. Possibly even harder to kill than the ordinary variety, though.

Zombie Sammael
09-05-2011, 06:16 AM
I'm not sure it would be a very practical offensive weapon.

Then again, a Myrddraal with cuendillar legs might be somewhat hampered in his movements. Possibly even harder to kill than the ordinary variety, though.

You didn't ask for a better weapon. You asked for a more potent weave. I provided one.

FelixPax
09-05-2011, 06:19 AM
why did no one know what would happen when the bore was made?

Perhaps one reason for that is Mierin's bias of belief, that Channeling is Superior to Dreaming?

Recall Mierin, Beidomon hatched the plan to operationally drilled into the Bore in the firstplace. Mierin is, was under the error ridden belief that Channeling is more powerful than Dreaming. Mierin does not know, understand as much about the World of Dreams as she has been led to believe to be true.


Where does Mierin make a series of error ridden claims?

The bolded sections of text below.

“Oh, he knows. The Great Lord knows more than you would suspect. It is possible to talk with him. Go to Shayol Ghul, into the Pit of Doom, and you can . . . hear him. You can . . . bathe in his presence .” A different light shone on her face, now. Ecstasy. She breathed through parted lips, and for a moment seemed to stare at something distant and wondrous. “Words cannot even begin to describe it. You must experience it to know. You must.” She was seeing his face again, with eyes large and dark and insistent. “Kneel to the Great Lord, and he will set you above all others. He will leave you free to reign as you will, so long as you bend knee to him only once. To acknowledge him. No more than that. He told me this. Asmodean will teach you to wield the Power without it killing you, teach what you can do with it. Let me help you. We can destroy the others. The Great Lord will not care . We can destroy all of them, even Asmodean, once he has taught you all you need to know. You and I can rule the world together under the Great Lord, forever.” Her voice dropped to a whisper, equal parts eagerness and fear. “Two great sa’angreal were made just before the end, one that you can use, one that I can. Far greater than that sword. Their power is beyond imagining . With those, we could challenge even . . . the Great Lord himself. Even the Creator!”

“You are mad,” he said raggedly. “The Father of Lies says he will leave me free? I was born to fight him. That is why I am here, to fulfill the Prophecies. I’ll fight him, and all of you, until the Last Battle! Until my last breath!”

“You do not have to. Prophecy is no more than the sign of what people hope for. Fulfilling the Prophecies will only bind you to a path leading to Tarmon Gai’don and your death. Moghedien or Sammael can destroy your body. The Great Lord of the Dark can destroy your soul. An end utter and complete. You will never be born again no matter how long the Wheel of Time turns!”


The Shadow Rising, Chapter 9 "Decisions" -- Rand al'Thor point of view, with Mierin

Rhuidean. Yes. Of course. Rhuidean. How many weeks to the south? Yet he had done something once. If he could remember how . . . “And you let him go? After all your talk of aiding me?”

“Not openly, I said! What could he find in Rhuidean worth my coming into the open? When you agree to stand with me will be time enough. Remember what I told you, Lews Therin.” Her voice took on a seductive note; those full lips curved, those dark eyes tried to swallow him like bottomless pools. “Two great sa’angreal. With those, together, we can. challenge—” This time she stopped on her own. He had remembered.

With the Power he folded reality, bent a small patch of what was. A door opened beneath the dome in front of him. That was the only way to describe it. An opening into darkness, into somewhere else.


The Shadow Rising, Chapter 57 "A Breaking in the Three-fold Land" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; with Mierin.

“What do you want?” he demanded. Once he had blocked Egwene and Elayne both from the True Source, but he could not remember how. So long as Lanfear could touch the Source, he had more chance of catching the wind in his hands than of holding her prisoner. One flash of balefire, and . . . He could not do it. She was one of the Forsaken, but the memory of a woman’s head rolling on the ground stopped him dead.

“You have two of them,” she said finally. “I thought I glimpsed . . . One is a woman, isn’t it?” Her smile could have halted a man’s heart and made him grateful. “You are beginning to consider my plan, aren’t you? With those, together, the other Chosen will kneel at our feet. We can supplant the Great Lord himself, challenge the Creator. We—”

“You were always ambitious, Mierin.” His voice grated in his ears. “Why do you think I turned away from you? It wasn’t Ilyena, whatever you like to think. You were out of my heart long before ever I met her. Ambition is all there is to you. Power is all you ever wanted. You disgust me!”

She stared at him, both hands pressed hard against her stomach, her dark eyes even larger than usual. “Graendal said . . . ” she began faintly. Swallowing, she began again. “Lews Therin? I love you, Lews Therin. I have always loved you, and I always will. You know that. You must!”


The Fires of Heaven, Chapter 6 "Gateways" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; with Mierin

Imaging is a synonym for Dreaming, the World(s) of Dreams. In a nutshell, Mierin trusts & believes in channeling turns the Wheel, not Dreaming.


Unfortunately, Rand al'Thor has not re-examined Mierin's own claims about Channeling and Dreaming either. He believes he could challenge the Creator, at one point in the story.


He picked at the meals without appetite, and tried to read, but his favorite books could divert him for only a few pages even in the beginning. At least once every day, though he had promised himself he would not, he lifted the massive wardrobe of polished blackwood and ivory in his bedchamber, floated it aside on flows of Air and carefully unraveled the traps he had set and the Mask of Mirrors that made the wall seem smooth, all inverted so no other eyes but his could see. There, in a niche hollowed out with the Power, stood two small statues of white stone about a foot tall, a woman and a man, each in flowing robes and holding a clear crystal sphere overhead in one hand. The night he set the army in motion toward Illian he had gone to Rhuidean alone to fetch these ter’angreal: if he needed them, he might not have much time. That was what he had told himself. His hand would stretch toward the bearded man, the only one of the pair a man could use, stretch out and stop, shaking. One finger touching, and more of the One Power than he could imagine could be his. With that, no one could defeat him, no one stand against him. With that, Lanfear had said once, he could challenge the Creator.

“It is mine by right,” he muttered each time, with his hand trembling just short of the figure. “Mine! I am the Dragon Reborn!”

And each time he made himself draw back, reweaving the Mask of Mirrors, reweaving the invisible traps that would burn anyone to a cinder who tried to pass them without the key. The huge wardrobe wafted back into place like a feather. He was the Dragon Reborn. But was that enough? It would have to be.

“I am the Dragon Reborn,” he whispered at the walls sometimes, and sometimes shouted at them. “I am the Dragon Reborn!” Silently and aloud he raged at those who opposed him, the blind fools who could not see and those who refused to see, for ambition or avarice or fear. He was the Dragon Reborn, the only hope of the world against the Dark One. And the Light help the world for it.


A Crown of Swords, Chapter 33 "A Bath" -- Rand al'Thor point of view; his thoughts

Rand al'Thor has been misguided by those among him, to believe in falsehoods. From Moiraine to Mierin, Rand al'Thor has been forged to believing falsehoods, and into living a lie.


Mierin told Rand, Channeling is more Powerful than Dreaming.
Moiraine told Rand, he was the Dragon's soul Reborn.



Point is the Shadow was wrong about who re-sealed the Bore in the 2nd Age, and that error has repeated in this turning of the Wheel.

Rand al'Thor is not "the only hope of the world against the Dark One."



Ishamael POV

Ishamael's point of view L.T.T. in the Prologue of TEOTW book, shows a similar belief that "channeling turns the Wheel, not Dreaming" in a Mirror World of the Past with People in it.

(Problem #1 for Ishamael is Mirror Worlds with People, tend to possess alternate histories, which vary from outcomes in other Worlds. A Perpendicular World variation. Problem #2 for Ishamael, is he assumes that L.T.T. sealed attempted to Re-seal the Bore previously. Problem #3 for Ishamael is Aes Sedai were able to lie before the Founding of the White Tower. A 2nd Age Aes Sedai motto: 'A Lie is our Shield' (Verin's library paper). Problem #4 for Ishamael, is the man who drilled into the Bore, is most likely the man who attempted to Re-seal it in the first place. A man likely with an incomplete knowledge of the World of Dreams, if Mierin originally was his partner. A man who does not seems to have told Mierin of his later plans. This man was called Beidomon.)

One of Mierin's limitations is she doesn't seem to re-examine her claims and acts for consistency. Be it, on the nature of Dreaming & Channeling, or what 'Love' is, or how 'Love' is expressed. Yes, Mierin has blind spots.




Lord General Niall's observations

Roughly an Age since the Breaking, even Lord General Niall of the Children of the Light, partially understands what has motivated a clique of the Darkfriends.

Niall nodded grimly. There had been no male Aes Sedai since the Breaking of the World, but the women who still claimed that title were bad enough. They prated of their Three Oaths: to speak no word that was not true, to make no weapon for one man to kill another, to use the One Power as a weapon only against Darkfriends or Shadowspawn. But now they had showed those oaths for the lies they were. He had always known no one could want the power they wielded except to challenge the Creator, and that meant to serve the Dark One.


The Dragon Reborn, Prologue "Fortress of the Light" -- Niall point of view, his thoughts

Many of Lord General Niall's observations about 'the West' are curiously accurate. An unknown enemy does exist in Tarabon. More than one in fact. (Who at the time? The Dragon Soul, The Seanchan Empire, Semirhage's proxies et la.)




Conclusion


If Mierin understood the true Power of the World of Dreams, there would have been not a need for drilling into the Bore in the first place.




Why didnt anyone try to stop it? If Elaida can see the future why couldnt someone back then?

A consistent interpretation is not necessarily truthful. There maybe more than one truth, or none.

Just ask Ishamael, or Moridin as he prefers to be called now. ;) He has room fulls of foretellings of the future, yet even he has to make assumptions who the Dragon's soul is in 'The Eye of the World' book.

Evidence needs to be judged, and for that one creates working assumptions. Assumptions create a narrative. Narratives are filled with interpretations, of what is considered valid and accurate. Problem is one has to know what is material, what is true. Difficulty is that creates a leap of faith, at a certain point earlier into the processes. A faith that one's assumptions are truthful.


In terms of the Wheel of Time narrative, Robert Jordan has been laying a series of hints across the story that many individual character's assumptions are off base by some degree. Even characters with high status in their given societies can be misguided. Character can and have learned falsehoods during their time in formal education. Be they Aes Sedai, Aiel, Merchants/Traders, Tuatha'an, Sea Folk, Seanchan, Commoners, Servants, Warders, Queens, Kings, Cast Outs and many others. An open mind is needed, yet even that isn't necessarily enough if one doesn't receive the enough feedback or is in the wrong crowd.

The Unreasoner
09-05-2011, 10:56 AM
The boatmen's destruction created a paradox and the Pattern resolved it by making the damage to the boat coincident with the death of the boatmen -- the slice in the boat happened whent he boatmen died, not minutes later when Moggy balefired them.
I'm not sure about that. If you are right, why wouldn't the boat just jump back and only start sinking post balefire? And the quote is quite clear anyway. And it doesn't read like it is implying some paradox resolving lottery played any role. Water had rushed in because the slice vanished when the rowers died.
I know of no instance where an inanimate object was balefired that created a paradox without the involvement of some animate/senntient victim as well.
RJ could have just changed his mind, or made a mistake with depicting the details of balefire. There doesn't seem to be a logical reason for the inclusion of a living being in a balefired system forcing unnecessary paradoxes.
The fluted rod does not sound as if it is weak.

In fact, IIRC. in past discussions of Balefire, I think the black fluted rod prodices the second or thrird most powerful balefire beam after Rand's destruction of Rahvin and Rand's destruction of Natrim's Barrow -- Depending on whether the discussion was before or after Natrim's Barrow.
All balefire, however weak, is radically dangerous. And that ter'angreal may have produced the only balefire most Aes Sedai were familiar with.

Also, ranking the potency of the rod's balefire seems futile. I do not recall it ever causing a significant temporal paradox, no matter what it hit, from TSR to KoD. What sort of arguments were made for the rod's potency?


And, back to my balefire fail-safe, what if the weave or ter'angreal that performs the experiment is triggered by a mouse flipping a switch? Maybe even add a timer. Allow the mouse to trigger the experiment, Travel away with the mouse, balefire the mouse if the Sharom is destroyed. Or if any other regrettable things happen.

GonzoTheGreat
09-05-2011, 11:23 AM
And, back to my balefire fail-safe, what if the weave or ter'angreal that performs the experiment is triggered by a mouse flipping a switch? Maybe even add a timer. Allow the mouse to trigger the experiment, Travel away with the mouse, balefire the mouse if the Sharom is destroyed. Or if any other regrettable things happen.That would get you into trouble with animal rights activists. As you may have noticed, my proposal to use students doesn't have that particular flaw.

Weird Harold
09-05-2011, 12:07 PM
And it doesn't read like it is implying some paradox resolving lottery played any role. Water had rushed in because the slice vanished when the rowers died.

It doesn't read like a paradox that needs to be resolved, because the paradox has been resolved. :D If the boat didn't begin to sink at the time the boatmen were burned back to, an obvious paradox would have been observable; starting the sinking when they died made the paradox less obvious.

RJ could have just changed his mind, or made a mistake with depicting the details of balefire. There doesn't seem to be a logical reason for the inclusion of a living being in a balefired system forcing unnecessary paradoxes.

Balefire isn't really logical; nothing that can create paradoxes is.

RJ may have changed his mind, and Brandon definitely changed the way balefire works, but neither changes the existing descriptions of the effects of balefire: If there is no animate/sentient casualty, there is no observable temporal effect.

ETA: the bottom line is that balefire works as the dramatic needs of the scene require and fitting that instance into canon afterwards is left to the fans.


All balefire, however weak, is radically dangerous. And that ter'angreal may have produced the only balefire most Aes Sedai were familiar with.

True but irrelevant to its strength.

What sort of arguments were made for the rod's potency?

In discussions regarding how far back it is possible to burn a thread, thickness of beam was related as directly proportional to time burned away. The Fluted Black Rod was ranked by its beam width, even though there is no temporal effect described from its use, simply because there are so few descriptions of balefire.

As compared to the described effect of other beams, the rod's beam is larger, and therefore assumed to be more powerful by a wide margin.

Kimon
09-05-2011, 12:34 PM
RJ may have changed his mind, and Brandon definitely changed the way balefire works, but neither changes the existing descriptions of the effects of balefire: If there is no animate/sentient casualty, there is no observable temporal effect.


This may just be a consequence of the greater difficulty in assessing the temporal effects of inanimate objects.

Suppose you have two similar, yet slightly altered scenarios:

1. Man uses a sword to kill another man. Third individual balefires the swordsman. The temporal shockwave extends far enough back in time, thus restoring the life of the sword victim.

2. Man uses a sword to kill another man. Third individual balefires the sword. Does the sword produce a temporal shockwave? Would it have ceased to have existed far enough back in time that the sword victim is restored to life?

Weird Harold
09-05-2011, 12:53 PM
2. Man uses a sword to kill another man. Third individual balefires the sword. Does the sword produce a temporal shockwave? Would it have ceased to have existed far enough back in time that the sword victim is restored to life?

As far as I know, the same amount of balefire will burn back an individual or sword the same amount of time. Nothing in the descriptions suggests that there would be a differential between animate and inanimate objects.

Thus using the same amount of Balefire on the sword as on the individual wielding the sword should produce the same temporal effect. Sadly, every use of Balefire, except the Panarch's Museum, has been directed at an individual and the temporal effect has been checked against an individual's action -- as at Natrim's Barrow.

There is no example of balefire directed at a weapon rather than an indivdual to check your hypothesis against. I wish there was so that there was definitive proof one way or the other in canon text rather than an interview quote that contradicts descriptions and explicit explanation in canon.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 01:20 PM
The display cases were holding up the cuendillar pieces that didn't fall until after the cases were balefired.

But if cuendillar isnt affected by balefire why would its temporal effect reach it?:p

Would Rand's dual-wound (from Ishamael and Fain) count as an actual part of him and hence a part of his thread in the pattern, or would it be external, like a parasite or inanimate infection. Could it be balefired without balefiring him?


why has no one just cut the whole wound out of his side and heal him with it gone, you could balefire the bit you removed.:confused:

The only thing someone really needs to remember about balefire is that unless your angry Rand with a point to make or in TAR is duck.:D

FelixPax?:confused:
Can you say that again only in sense? I am not yet fluent in senile elephant deity.

Weird Harold
09-05-2011, 01:55 PM
But if cuendillar isnt affected by balefire why would its temporal effect reach it?:p

Why wouldn't it? The temporal effect would be applied to the case rather than the contents anyway. Why would Cuendillar hang in the air for ten, twenty, thirty minutes after the case holding it was actually destroyed (assuming a temporal effect for the destruction of the case) when the lesser paradox would be to fall as soon as the support was removed.

Desperately she [Nyneave] flung herself to one side, so hard that she slid along the smooth white floorstones until one of the thin columns stopped her with a jar. A leg-thick bar of white shot through where she had been standing, as if the air had turned to molten metal, slicing all the way across the exhibition hall; where it struck, pieces simply vanished out of columns, priceless artifacts ceased to exist. Hurling flows of Fire behind her blindly, hoping to strike something, anything, in the courtyard, Nynaeve scrambled away across the hall on hands and knees. Little more than waist-high, the bar sawed sideways, carving a swathe through both walls; between, cases and cabinets and wired skeletons collapsed and crashed. Severed columns quivered; some fell, but what dropped onto that terrible sword did not survive to smash displays and pedestals to the floor. The glass-walled table fell before the molten shaft vanished, leaving a purplish bar that seemed burned into Nynaeve's vision; the cuendillar figures were all that dropped out of that molten white shaft, bouncing on the floor.

The figurines did not break, of course. It seemed Moghedien was right; not even balefire could destroy cuendillar. That black rod was one of the stolen ter'angreal. Nynaeve could remember the warning appended to their list in a firm hand. Produces balefire. Dangerous and almost impossible to control.

Nothing in that scene fell before the balefire removed its support as it should have if Balefire prodiced a temporal effect when destroying inanimate objects.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 02:01 PM
nothing else in the case was cuendillar it would have been destroyed so nothing else would be left to fall out.

I am not saying you are not right but i am not sure that i would use an example that included cuendillar which is the only thing we know of that isnt affected by balefire.

Weird Harold
09-05-2011, 02:13 PM
I am not saying you are not right but i am not sure that i would use an example that included cuendillar which is the only thing we know of that isnt affected by balefire.

Read the whole quote; cuendillar wasn'tt he only thing falling:

Little more than waist-high, the bar sawed sideways, carving a swathe through both walls; between, cases and cabinets and wired skeletons collapsed and crashed. Severed columns quivered; some fell, but what dropped onto that terrible sword did not survive to smash displays and pedestals to the floor.

If the support for those column pieces and other items showed a temporal effect, they would have fallen before the beam passed and thereby missed the beam.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 02:18 PM
maybe the column wasnt solid rock but carved pieces on top of each other like bricks, the ones hit by the balefire aer destroyed but the ones on top just fall because they are no longer being held up?

the temporal effect would have made them fall before they were hit so could the effect have spread between the rocks?

Kimon
09-05-2011, 02:35 PM
Read the whole quote; cuendillar wasn'tt he only thing falling:



If the support for those column pieces and other items showed a temporal effect, they would have fallen before the beam passed and thereby missed the beam.

It's probably just an optical illusion, preserving the viewers sense that the cuendillar objects continued to rest upon the table, rather than beginning to fall through it until after the balefire removed the object that was supporting them. After all, might you not just as well argue that Nynaeve should have seen the table (and other soon to vanish mundane objects) disappear prior to when they were actually struck by the balefire as well, indeed likely vanishing before the balefire was even cast.

Terez
09-05-2011, 03:15 PM
And technically no one should have ever seen Mat and Aviendha dead...because they were technically never dead.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 03:33 PM
And technically no one should have ever seen Mat and Aviendha dead...because they were technically never dead.

true even the forsaken seem confused about why they can remember things that happened before they got hit

Terez
09-05-2011, 03:37 PM
true even the forsaken seem confused about why they can remember things that happened before they got hit
I can only recall that once - in the dream in TGS 15, Moridin. Brandon wrote that, so take it as fanservice.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 03:40 PM
ok got me point first time.
But he is meant to be the best and smartest of the bad guys so if he doesnt know how it works how are we meant to be sure of anything?

Terez
09-05-2011, 03:47 PM
ok got me point first time.
But he is meant to be the best and smartest of the bad guys so if he doesnt know how it works how are we meant to be sure of anything?
You have to take these things in context.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 03:54 PM
You have to take these things in context.

not sure what the context is?

from the AOL, uses balefire, all the forsaken are scared of him and was some kind of genius. in this context if he doesnt know how something works i trust his word on it.

why would he lie he intends to kill Rand in the end anyway.
you dont need to hide the truth from someone on death row, if he says it doesnt make sense then it doesnt make sense.

Terez
09-05-2011, 04:01 PM
not sure what the context is?
The context of who wrote the book. It's RJ's story, and Brandon is working through his understanding of that story, same as Maria and everyone else on the Team. That doesn't invalidate everything Brandon wrote. It's just context. If you're trying to solve the mysteries of balefire, you have to remember the fundamental difference between what RJ said and what Brandon said.

I feel like this is Brandon's way of validating the fan feeling (which he shares) that balefire doesn't make sense. RJ might have written it, but I tend to doubt it...not in precisely that way.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 04:04 PM
ah, fair enough got yer

but doesnt that make Moridin right though?
BS has all the notes and the team to help him and it doesnt make sense, then Moridin is right how it works doesnt make sense just try not to get hit with it.

Unless you believe your own theory about how to save the world:D

Terez
09-05-2011, 04:07 PM
ah, fair enough got yer

but doesnt that make Moridin right though?
By mob rule, sure. It might have made sense to RJ. ;) But the point was that it's not necessarily in line with Moridin's character.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 04:10 PM
It might have made sense to RJ.

so your point is it ok as long as it made sense to the one who wrote it?
And you have the nerve to tell me to do better?

It might have made sense to him, we will never know now if he could control his own creation or not

Terez
09-05-2011, 04:12 PM
so your point is it ok as long as it made sense to the one who wrote it?
No, not at all. The point is, if it made sense to RJ, maybe we can work out how. ;) That is, after all, what Theoryland is all about.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 04:16 PM
No, not at all. The point is, if it made sense to RJ, maybe we can work out how. That is, after all, what Theoryland is all about.

this is one thing im not sure can be understood, if the notes are not clear on how it works could change slightly each time we see it. I think the examples earlier were all from RJ and if we couldnt figure it out from the pen of the creator how can we from the heir who is one of us?

Zombie Sammael
09-05-2011, 04:43 PM
this is one thing im not sure can be understood, if the notes are not clear how it works could change slightly each time we see it. I think the examples earlier were all from RJ and if we couldnt figure it out from the pen of the creator how can we from the heir who is one of us?

So is what you're saying that we should focus more on the RJ books to try and figure it out, and use BS as more of a loose kind of guide? Because I could get behind that, actually - apart from it leads us down the dangerous path of "WOT would have been..." :rolleyes:

Terez
09-05-2011, 04:57 PM
Sometimes I think Team Jordan watches us to see if we've figured it out yet, because they can't figure it out. lol. (Hence the convo w/ Brandon about the boat.)

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 04:57 PM
So is what you're saying that we should focus more on the RJ books to try and figure it out, and use BS as more of a loose kind of guide?

no more that the search for the truth in this case is pointless.
with all the books notes and the team helping him BS cannot figure out its laws so there are now only 2 options=

1. It has no rules as such just two known effects that we about, killing you and messing with time when it hits something.

2. Perfect time travel and force RJ to write out a full list of its powers and effects, then beg him to stop putting in Elayne bath scenes:D

Terez
09-05-2011, 04:59 PM
no more that the search for the truth in this case is pointless.
with all the books notes and the team helping him BS cannot figure out its laws so there are now only 2 options=
You forgot:

3. We just haven't logicked it out yet. Not completely, anyway. We do have some ground rules that are not all that difficult to understand and/or support.

Zombie Sammael
09-05-2011, 05:01 PM
Okay, so what do we know about Balefire and how it works? Point by point. Then maybe we can reason it out. I'll start.


It kills.

confused at birth
09-05-2011, 05:07 PM
You forgot

did not:p
thought that was covered by BS not being able to figure it out, i kind of include places like this as part of the team so if we have got nowhere there is no where to go.
ground rules that are not hard to understand?
so far there is=

:cool: you can stop it in TAR
:( how much it messes with time depends on how much of it hit you
:) cuendillar can block it
:D it kills you even if RJ doesnt actually say the word dies
:eek: you will never use it to trim your nails more than once
:mad: for some unknown reason Egwene has yet to be hit with it

and thanks to Gonzo & Davian for smart replies to the actual question:)

GonzoTheGreat
09-06-2011, 03:42 AM
true even the forsaken seem confused about why they can remember things that happened before they got hit

I can only recall that once - in the dream in TGS 15, Moridin. Brandon wrote that, so take it as fanservice.You? No!
Tucking his harp under his arm, Asmodean drifted away from Mat and Aviendha. He enjoyed playing, but not for a pair who did not listen, much less appreciate. He was not sure what had happened that morning, and not sure he wanted to be sure. Too many Aiel had expressed surprise at seeing him, had claimed they had seen him dead; he did not want details. There was a long gash down the wall in front of him. He knew what made that sharp edge, that surface as slick as ice, smoother than any hand could have polished in a hundred years.I won't bother mentioning book, chapter number and title this time. If you don't know, read and find out. :D

Terez
09-06-2011, 05:02 AM
You? No!
I won't bother mentioning book, chapter number and title this time. If you don't know, read and find out. :D
Like I said, I don't think RJ would have written it like Brandon did with Moridin. Asmodean's memories were fuzzy, but he didn't express confusion over the nature of balefire, which is what we were talking about.

AbbeyRoad
09-06-2011, 05:33 AM
Another advantage is that protecting yourself from balefire is not possible. All you can do is dodge. Well, unless you happen to have Callandor in your hands, at least. But that was anomalous enough to freak out Ishamael.
I believe this happened in T'A'R, correct?

And if not, would that suggest Callandor is made of cuendillar?

I'm sure Mat wouldn't be overly bothered by balefire either.
Not sure about that one. He can be harmed by the effects of weaves, but not the weaves themselves, which is why he died from OP lightning. Would a balefire stream be considered a weave, or an effect of weaving?

And technically no one should have ever seen Mat and Aviendha dead...because they were technically never dead.
That's the problem with time travel paradoxes. Take the following examples:

A man creates a gateway loop, via 2 gateways with gateway A leading to an alternate location, and gateway B in a straight line with gateway A leading back immediately behind his original location. Therefore, the man can toss a stone forward through both gateways in a straight line and hit himself in the back with it. Say he fires a stream of balefire through the gateways and hits himself with it. Is he alive or dead? If the balefire removes his thread from the pattern back before he created the weave, then who fired it in the first place?

Man A kills Man B with a sword. Man C balefires Man A with sufficient strength, thus removing Man A's thread from the pattern and reviving man B. Man D balefires Man C. Does Man A pop back into existence again, considering no one should have been able to balefire him in the first place? Is Man B dead again from the original sword?

As for the "inanimate objects have threads" debate, this makes no sense to me. If that's true, it would mean all matter in the Randland universe essentially has a thread, which would mean every atom is purposely spun out into existence with a destiny, via a soul. The reason your whole body disappears when you are balefired is because the balefire removes the soul of your thread, not solely the organic matter that is your body. If that were true, balefire would merely cleave a whole through you based on what it touches and remove only the spatial and energy displacement those specific cells were responsible for.

The reason your actions are considered to never have happened is because everything your soul has manipulated was not manipulated after your thread is burned. Inanimate objects can't have actions because they are being acted upon by forces, not generating force. If I push a table into a chair, and then balefire the table, it would make no sense for the chair to have never moved since the table exerted no force except what I applied to it; if you balefired me, neither would have moved. This only makes sense if souls are the threads of the pattern, and not all matter in the universe. The same argument applies to Weird Harold's sword hypothesis. If Man A kills Man B with a sword, then Man C balefires man A's sword alone, it makes no sense to say it would have the same effect as balefiring the person. If Man's A's sword never existed, he would have purchased a different one and not gone into a sword fight with no sword. Inanimate objects can't have threads because of Newton's First Law. When you try to integrate inorganic time travel into a mystic fictional physics system, you get all sorts of problems (such as the "clothes" problem mentioned in the interview).

And lastly, I never understood why surgery is never practiced by Randlanders when it could solve some issues standard OP Healing cannot. It seems like it would make a lot of sense to, say, use the Power to create ultra fine scalpels of Air and use precision with the Power to cut out the infected part of Rand's side, then seal the hole instantly with the Power while using delving as probes to avoid internal vital tissue/organ damage.

GonzoTheGreat
09-06-2011, 06:03 AM
Like I said, I don't think RJ would have written it like Brandon did with Moridin. Asmodean's memories were fuzzy, but he didn't express confusion over the nature of balefire, which is what we were talking about.All right, perhaps I should've quoted a bit more. Next bit:
Idly – but with a shiver, too – he wondered whether being reborn in this fashion made him a new man. He did not think so.Sounds like confusion over the nature of balefire, or rather over the existential implications of it. He comes down on one side of that debate, of course, but then, he's a musician, not a philosopher. Those are not mutually exclusive, as Britney proves.

I believe this happened in T'A'R, correct?Well, yeah. Which may or may not be relevant, as both Ishamael and Rand were there in the flesh.

And if not, would that suggest Callandor is made of cuendillar?That's probably the case anyway, but this need not prove it. It may be true that there actually is a weave which would produce protection against balefire.

Not sure about that one. He can be harmed by the effects of weaves, but not the weaves themselves, which is why he died from OP lightning. Would a balefire stream be considered a weave, or an effect of weaving?Do not try this at home. These stunts are performed by trained professionals.

I suspect Mat will get to try and find out, somewhere in the next book, when he confronts Cadsuane.

Terez
09-06-2011, 06:12 AM
I believe this happened in T'A'R, correct?

And if not, would that suggest Callandor is made of cuendillar?
lol. Just finished putting a really long and tedious entry into the new interview database concerning this topic.

Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24292057002545152)
I wonder if Whitebridge is made of spinglass. Does anyone have an answer?
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24298473574637568)
I always took 'spinglass' to be a WoT way of saying 'spun glass'. Very fragile. Also...
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24298633943846912)
'The man opened his mouth to protest as citizens always did; they seemed to think Aiel were made of spinglass'
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24298972432564225)
Obviously fragile is what he's getting at. Now, if you could do it like cuendillar...that's different.
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24299226502537217)
Per Moghedien I get the impression there are many forms of cuendillar. Maybe iron is easiest.
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24310117549744128)
That's a good point--I missed the spinglass = fragile reference. As for cuendillar... perhaps.
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24310319874576384)
There is an argument in the same vein towards Callandor being cuendillar.
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24314982837522432)
Well, people argued Callandor=cuendillar because it stopped balefire. But if Perrin can do it... :)
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24323792264237056)
There was also Osan'gar's comment during the cleansing that though the Choedan Kal would be destroyed...
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24323971260354561)
... he'd still have Callandor. Of course he could have meant to balefire Rand and attack Narishma. Still, weird.
Krit Petty (http://twitter.com/bgrishinko/status/24325508221112320)
Callandor is the most powerful sa'angreal without the Choedan Kal. He might just be noting the fact.
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24332006393389056)
It's the expectation that he would have Callandor after he balefired the hill which is significant.
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24334009077075968)
He didn't say he was going to balefire the whole hill. Elza got his hill, though. ;)
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24334202614841345)
Strongest Rand could manage with fat man was man-thick. He could sweep it, but it's not necessary.
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24355457934036992)
I did make that point, but it's weird, risking Narishma's response to the attack.
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24355734439333888)
Rand was distracted, why not kill Narishma first, then Rand. Also Osan'gar links the balefire to...
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24356555981856768)
... Rand's death--"But still, he could take Callandor after al'Thor was dead."--as if it's a result.
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24360030266462209)
I read it as him seeing Rand as the only real threat.
Luckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers/status/24361989140652032)
Which is weird, in itself. Callandor circle responding to reversed webs--a scary, and impossible thing for an AoL'er.
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24364549197008896)
True, but he might have figured out the ter'angreal thing like Demandred, and he was at point blank range (for balefire).11 (https://docs.google.com/View?docID=dcjspjqg_1001hng4gxff&revision=_latest#FOOTNOTE-11)
Ruth Hinckley (http://twitter.com/Lironah/status/24302873017851904)
So if the cuendillar Egwene makes is white, why are the seals half black? Saidin-made? Different type of cuendillar?
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/24528171059650560)
re: black/white, I always figured this was why Elayne couldn't get the colors right with the stone ring (no man).
Brandon (http://twitter.com/BrandonSandrson/status/24526932200656896)
@WoTLuckers (http://twitter.com/WoTLuckers) @Lironah (http://twitter.com/Lironah) @Terez27 (http://twitter.com/Terez27) Now that's an interesting conversation. Re: cuendillar.
Terez (http://twitter.com/Terez27/status/25018316678504450)
lol, now I get to catalog the whole conversation because Brandon said it was interesting.

Terez
09-06-2011, 06:15 AM
All right, perhaps I should've quoted a bit more. Next bit:
Sounds like confusion over the nature of balefire, or rather over the existential implications of it.
Which, again, has nothing to do with what we were talking about.

FelixPax
09-06-2011, 11:07 AM
Okay, so what do we know about Balefire and how it works? Point by point. Then maybe we can reason it out. I'll start.


It kills.


False.

It tries to removes a given soul from a given World.
Rand al'Thor was not killed by Moridin's Balefire. Nor was Moridin killed by Rand's Balefire. (ACoS book)

Balefire cannot remove Memory. (Asmodean claim.)

Fearil remembers Elza Penfell's Order to Protect the Dragon Reborn at all costs.

“I think a few people are going to have to die soon.” As soon as she decided which ones. Fearil bowed his head, and a jolt of pleasure came through the bond. He did like killing. “In the meanwhile, you will kill anyone who threatens the Dragon Reborn. Anyone.” After all, it had become perfectly clear to her, while she herself was a captive of the savages. The Dragon Reborn had to reach Tarmon Gai’don, or how could the Great Lord defeat him there?


Crossroads of Twilight, Chapter 24 "A Strengthen Storm" -- Elza Penfell point of view


Even though Elza Penfell was Balefired by Rand al'Thor using the True Power in Arad Domon in TGS book.


Balefire cannot elimination all variations of a given World, found in alternate Perpendicular Worlds outcomes.

Balefire is utterly inferior to Dreaming.

confused at birth
09-06-2011, 12:53 PM
Asmodean's memories were fuzzy, but he didn't express confusion over the nature of balefire, which is what we were talking about.


i dont think he was thinking about how it worked that much, i know i wouldnt because it would be vomit making to think about the fact you are dead only a hiccup in the pattern brought you back.
i would be glad balefire had saved me but i wouldnt want to look to close at the fine print to find out how.

Why would he be confused about it, seems to have been fairly well known balefire could undo time since the last big light/shadow falling out

The Unreasoner
09-06-2011, 06:01 PM
Maybe balefire has three properties: density, volume, and intensity.

How far any individual thread is burned back is strictly a function of the intensity of the balefire that hit it.

Density affects how much balefire is needed. A more dense beam would burn through a wall faster, or kill a person faster, and would therefore go through quicker. A less dense weave would need to be pumped into the target longer for an equivalent effect, because the amount of balefire (however intense) is less. In order to 'saturate' (or whatever) the target, units of balefire must hit every thread. Perhaps this is what Rand altered when he wanted a 'less powerful' beam in Rhuidean, as a less dense beam would take longer to do what is needed. And so, the beam could be 'turned off' more accurately, because the time to respond would be greater.

Volume is pretty self-explanatory. The diameter and length of the beam. While length is most likely arbitrary (and a function of time), diameter can be tweaked to increase the area of effect.

And so, it may be that the rod either only produces high-diameter shafts of unknown density and negligible intensity, or produces balefire with modifiable properties and the Black Ajah simply didn't know how to properly use it. After all, Rand's beam at Natrin's Barrow produced a significant temporal effect, but was not 'palace sized' in diameter. And he used the Choedan Kal. Maybe a very high-density beam (so the whole Palace wouldn't take hours to burn) with a moderately high (and specifically designated) intensity and a manageable diameter?


More interesting than the exact properties of balefire (to me) is whether the Bore even could be closed with the deliberate use of balefire. Whether the knowledge of balefire was available or not, whether inanimate objects are subject to the temporal properties or not, and ethics aside, what do you all think? Hypothetically, after the Bore was opened, if Mierin and Beidomon and anyone else directly involved was balefired back, maybe even a couple of days, would the Bore be sealed again? And if it would be, then what? The memories of the drilling would remain, if not too many details. How would the thinkers of the day explain/understand what happened? Would they even be capable of hypothesizing the existence of a paradoxical entity, the Adversary of Creation itself? Or would they only see it as something like an industrial accident? Without the effects the open Bore caused (the degradation of society, the physical transformation of Shayol Ghul), would it even be possible for a Fel or Elan to rationally suspect the existence of the Dark One? Could it have been possible for philosophers 'within' the Pattern to predict the possible consequences of such an experiment? Could the philosophers even potentially recognize the outcome as 'inevitable'?

I think that these questions might highlight some issues in the nature of the War of Power. After all, if someone could 'prove' the existence of the DO without partially releasing him, humanity might be able to permanently 'win' the war. Without the influence of the Dark One, some knowledge might go perpetually uncorrupted. Of course, fatalists would still be an issue. Just because we know that a nuclear Armageddon is possible won't stop some lunatic trying to make it a reality. And as soon as the Dark One's nature became at least partially understood by Ishamael, as soon as Ishamael knew such an entity existed, he actively turned against the Pattern. If the Dark One's existence could be proven, and his nature somewhat understood without opening the prison, someone like Ishamael would try to free him. Ishamael was convinced by reason and philosophy, not by mundane evidence of the Dark One's power or the promise of gifts. And so, Ishamael (and his like) could very likely willingly serve an absent and impotent Dark One.

Weird Harold
09-06-2011, 07:16 PM
Maybe balefire has three properties: density, volume, and intensity.

How far any individual thread is burned back is strictly a function of the intensity of the balefire that hit it.

For RJ's descriptions of Balefire, volume and intensity are interchangeable, or at least inextricably locked together. Brabndon's description of the destruction of Natrin's Barrow admits the possibility of intensity and volume being controllable separately.

Perhaps this is what Rand altered when he wanted a 'less powerful' beam in Rhuidean, as a less dense beam would take longer to do what is needed. And so, the beam could be 'turned off' more accurately, because the time to respond would be greater.

Rand altered the size of the beam as a way to conserve energy, and he altered the timing to minimize burn-through/collateral damage. A discernable propagation speed for Balefire can be inferred from RJ's discriptions; Brandon's version of Balefire appears to be slower than RJ's.

After all, Rand's beam at Natrin's Barrow produced a significant temporal effect, but was not 'palace sized' in diameter. And he used the Choedan Kal.

That was Brandon's version of Balefire. His fversion is slower and less laser-like because it spreads with distance -- and consumes all of inanimate objects as RJ's only consumes animate targets.

More interesting than the exact properties of balefire (to me) is whether the Bore even could be closed with the deliberate use of balefire. Whether the knowledge of balefire was available or not, whether inanimate objects are subject to the temporal properties or not, and ethics aside, what do you all think?

Since Balefire definitely produces a temporal effect on a target's actions the Bore could have been resealed -- or more precisely un-drilled -- at any time within any given Balefire beam's capability to burn back a thread. I don't think anyone can argue that it couldn't, as long as a person who performed a key act survived to be balefired.

The problem with Balefire as a solution to the DO's ability to touch the world is purely pratctical -- by the time the problem could be identified, the amount/intensity of Balefire required would be beyond the available OP strength. There was no reason to treat the Bore as anything other than an industrial accident for quite some time; a matter of days or weeks. The strongest RJ depiction of Balefire we have is Rand's destruction of Rahvin and that undid no more than two or three days -- however long it took to disarm the lightening trap weave -- and, from the history of the Bore in the BWB, it was apparently a month or more before anyone suspected anything was wrong.

Perhaps if there had been a Foretelling specifying that technician Jane Average should be balefired as soon as the Sharom exploded the Bore could have been Un-drilled, but barring foreknowledge there simply weren't any Channelers powerful enough (even withthe most powerful peacetime sa'angreal) to do the job by the time a problem was identified.

Lupusdeusest
09-06-2011, 07:24 PM
Isn't that what grad students are for?

Of course, the DO also knew that trick, so he destroyed the entire laboratory as soon as he was able, thus preventing your neat fail safe from working.

But I bribed the architect first!

(I hope to HELL someone gets this...)

The Unreasoner
09-06-2011, 09:28 PM
For RJ's descriptions of Balefire, volume and intensity are interchangeable, or at least inextricably locked together. Brabndon's description of the destruction of Natrin's Barrow admits the possibility of intensity and volume being controllable separately.
I'm not sure about that. If I were trying to balefire a mouse (maybe one that released the DO) back a certain amount of time, a very wide beam (and so high-volume) would only hit the mouse with the amount of balefire contained by the mouse's exposed area. The rest of the balefire would go around (and eventually, through) the mouse, and potentially would go on to affect other things. I would think that if intensity was a function of volume (and so very probably diameter, see my comments below on density for why), it would demand the target being hit by 'all' of the balefire. Of course, if you are right, it may be that the magnitude of the temporal effect is really almost accidental, and is simply a side-effect (and almost impossible to regulate).

And I don't think it is appropriate to assume that Brandon changed the properties of balefire. Especially since RJ's quotes in interviews seem to allow everything seen in all of the books, except possibly the display cases. And even that can potentially be explained, for instance with my interpretation above. Essentially, I don't see any instance of balefire from Brandon contradicting any from Jordan, and vice versa. And neither author appears to have definitely contradicted himself.
Rand altered the size of the beam as a way to conserve energy
I don't recall this, but it makes sense and is consistent with my interpretation.
and he altered the timing to minimize burn-through/collateral damage.
The mechanism of altering the timing is what I tried to address with the density property. Any individual unit of balefire (maybe think of them like photons, and balefire as the laser? Frequency of photon=intensity of unit of balefire, luminosity is similar to balefire density, and the diameter of a laser beam (and length of time it operates) is relatable to balefire volume) seems to be more or less identical to other units in the same beam. A lower units/volume would mean a lower units/(pi*r^2*{speed of balefire}*{time the beam is maintained}. Pi is constant, the beam's radius is presumably constant (or at least could be treated as such), and the speed of balefire conceivably is constant (or, again, can be treated as such due to the human-level reaction speed of the channeler). Assuming any thread requires some quantity (maybe constant, maybe related to the nature of the thread) of balefire units to be 'burned', the only way to influence the time it takes to successfully balefire the thread is to alter the number of balefire units fired per some amount of volume (and, therefore, per unit of time). If the duration the beam is maintained and the diameter of the beam are the only two properties that can be manipulated by a channeler, burn-through collateral damage could only be prevented by firing a wider beam of equal strength (not conducive to damage-control) or by firing in bursts. And so if intensity was a function of volume, it could only be related to diameter, as firing in bursts would not work. Or, the channeler would need to actively determine how much balefire to force into a thread before allowing the thread to burn and the beam to pass through. And, if that were the case, burn-through collateral damage would be negligible to experienced users of balefire. Which Rand is/was not, I will grant. But linking the magnitude of the temporal effect (intensity) to the length of time a thread is exposed to balefire (volume) seems unnecessarily complicated.

A discernable propagation speed for Balefire can be inferred from RJ's discriptions; Brandon's version of Balefire appears to be slower than RJ's.

Or Rand gained more understanding of balefire's properties, and manipulated them to suit his needs.

That was Brandon's version of Balefire. His fversion is slower and less laser-like because it spreads with distance -- and consumes all of inanimate objects as RJ's only consumes animate targets.
I don't recall it spreading with distance, but if it is the case it could still be understood with my interpretation. And even lasers spread somewhat over distance. The only bizarre instance of balefire by Brandon that I can recall is Rand balefiring his coat. Which seems to be related to the issue of people's clothes disappearing when they are balefired. And of why the beam at Natrin's Barrow spread throughout the place instead of going right through. I can only guess that there is some mechanism of control available (which may somewhat undercut some of my points on density) where the channeler can determine a beam length, in which the 'units' of balefire spread out (and continuously push other 'units' away from the beam until the beam is released) at a certain point. It does seem reasonable that solids and liquids would 'conduct'/transfer the units of balefire more rapidly than air. Although, to reconcile this with my previous points, it does seem that the spread is primarily concerned with area of effect, and not intensity of temporal effect. Rand did not seem to feel the need to consider Graendal's position in the palace, or the number of people inside. Perhaps he somehow only allowed the balefire to spread from one thread to another after the first thread reached some threshold of balefire saturation, but this explanation seems unnecessarily more complex than my hypothesis of primary intensity. And, with my explanation, beam-length control might be entirely unnecessary. If balefire is always spreading, and more rapidly when it spreads in the same direction as the beam, then spreading in the target makes sense. The proximity of the molecules in the (presumably) solid-and-liquid target would be higher than the proximity of the molecules in air. If I am correct, and this does increase the speed of the spreading, the beam itself could maintain a relatively constant shape between the channeler and the target for the duration of any practical weaving of balefire.


Since Balefire definitely produces a temporal effect on a target's actions the Bore could have been resealed -- or more precisely un-drilled -- at any time within any given Balefire beam's capability to burn back a thread. I don't think anyone can argue that it couldn't, as long as a person who performed a key act survived to be balefired.
This seems to make sense, but I wonder if any non-Pattern entity could rightly be considered as an 'effect' of someone's actions. Does the Dark One defy a logic tree, is he sufficiently removed from Time that the temporal nature of cause and effect is rendered meaningless, nonsensical, or radically different?
The problem with Balefire as a solution to the DO's ability to touch the world is purely pratctical
Right. I suppose you are correct. But if a mouse could play some vital role, no one would think twice before balefiring it to undo even minor industrial accidents. And I was more interested in the hypothetical implications for philosophy, not in the practicality of the method.

Weird Harold
09-06-2011, 11:26 PM
I'm not sure about that. If I were trying to balefire a mouse (maybe one that released the DO) back a certain amount of time, a very wide beam (and so high-volume) would only hit the mouse with the amount of balefire contained by the mouse's exposed area. The rest of the balefire would go around (and eventually, through) the mouse, and potentially would go on to affect other things.

Unfortunately, the only information we can glean from RJ's descriptions of Balefire is the corelation between beam "thickness" (diameter) and temporal effect. That corelation is very solid.

There is no suggestion of any other corelation or variability is the formation or use of Balefire.

I would think that if intensity was a function of volume (and so very probably diameter, see my comments below on density for why), it would demand the target being hit by 'all' of the balefire. Of course, if you are right, it may be that the magnitude of the temporal effect is really almost accidental, and is simply a side-effect (and almost impossible to regulate).

RJ's descriptions always characterize Balefire as "a Bar of Light" but perhaps the beam of Balefire itself is of fixed diameter and only the brightness (intensity) is varied -- the apparent difference in diameters being an optical illusion or 'glare' phenomenon?

I do think that you are overthinking the variability of Balefire; RJ's descriptions simply aren't detailed enough to support your extrapolations.

... RJ's quotes in interviews seem to allow everything seen in all of the books, except possibly the display cases. And even that can potentially be explained, for instance with my interpretation above.

We will have to agree to disagree if you see any possibility of RJ's comments allowing the described behavior in the Panarch's Museum.

...Assuming any thread requires some quantity (maybe constant, maybe related to the nature of the thread) of balefire units to be 'burned', the only way to influence the time it takes to successfully balefire the thread is to alter the number of balefire units fired per some amount of volume (and, therefore, per unit of time). ... But linking the magnitude of the temporal effect (intensity) to the length of time a thread is exposed to balefire (volume) seems unnecessarily complicated.

From RJ's descriptions, Balefire only needs to make contact to completely consume an animate target. There doesn't seem to be any corelation between exposure time and temporal effect -- just beam size/power level. Higher power levels appear to be harder to control, but Rand's use of high power levels declines as he gains experience so the appearance of control difficulty at higher power levels might be illusary -- except for the warning about the Fluted Balck Rod being hard to control.

I don't recall it spreading with distance,

See twitter conversation posted earlier for Brandon's comment on Balefire spreading.

And of why the beam at Natrin's Barrow spread throughout the place instead of going right through. I can only guess that there is some mechanism of control available

There is no mention of a controlability mechanism in any of RJ or Brandon's descriptions. The only mention of control is regard to Rand's reduction of power and duration (down to "finger-thin beams, cut off as soon as they made contact" after Balefiring Rahvin with a "man-thick bar of light" and erasing hours or days.

Brandon does not describe the width of the beam that struck Natrin's Barrow, just the destruction of the entire place in the same terms RJ reserved for animate/sentient targets. The effect described is consistent with a beam width the size of the castle/compound and a wave-front opassing through. Brandon. however, says the balefire was not castle-wide, and the destruction spread from a smaller beam as inanimate threads were consumed.

This seems to make sense, but I wonder if any non-Pattern entity could rightly be considered as an 'effect' of someone's actions. Does the Dark One defy a logic tree, is he sufficiently removed from Time that the temporal nature of cause and effect is rendered meaningless, nonsensical, or radically different?

The DO didn't create the Bore or have any effect on the Pattern until it was drilled. A Foretelling wouldn't, couldn't, tell anything about the DO, but Would tell everything about the threads that ended with the destruction of the Sharom and/or those that survived the destruction.

The DO, Himself, has said he can't step outside of time, so if the Bore is un-drilled by Balefire used on someone or something critical to the drilling of the Bore, the DO can't use wahat was never drilled.

Zombie Sammael
09-07-2011, 05:02 AM
The DO didn't create the Bore or have any effect on the Pattern until it was drilled. A Foretelling wouldn't, couldn't, tell anything about the DO, but Would tell everything about the threads that ended with the destruction of the Sharom and/or those that survived the destruction.

The DO, Himself, has said he can't step outside of time, so if the Bore is un-drilled by Balefire used on someone or something critical to the drilling of the Bore, the DO can't use wahat was never drilled.

I would be very careful of confusing the properties of the Bore with the properties of the DO. The Bore itself is unique; it is a hole in the pattern through which contact can be made with an extra-dimensional (extra-Pattern) entity, the DO. In fact, the only other phenomena we have which is comparable to the Bore is Balefire, which (regardless of the precise mechanics of it) also "burns" or destroys the Pattern.

An example: If Weird Harold(1) balefired Zombie Sammael(2) but was then balefired by The Unreasoner(3), would Zombie Sammael remain balefired? To my mind, the answer is yes, because Zombie Sammael's thread has already been burned out of the physical manifestation of time, the Pattern. His thread is already gone, and there is no way to get it back, even by balefiring the balefirer. The damage is done, and cannot be repaired by causing further damage. All you would succeed in doing would be to remove Weird Harold from the Pattern as well.

I think that the Bore works similarly. It is damage to the Pattern, just as a balefired thread is, but on a slightly larger scale. Balefiring a mouse or research student who activated whatever mechanism was used to create the Bore wouldn't cause the Bore to close up, since all you would do is damage the Pattern (slightly) further.

Despite the chronal effects of Balefire, I don't think you can repair damage to the Pattern itself by damaging it further; the initial damage has already been caused. This differs from the Pattern's compensation for other effects of Balefire (for example, flooding a balefired boat with water) because those other threads are still within the Pattern; the Pattern can course-correct and make it right. In fact, since Nynaeve's block disappearing was arguably essential for later events crucial to the Pattern's survival (e.g. the cleansing) it's clear that the Pattern is able to predict Balefire usage to some extent and allow it. If Moghedien was powerfully balefired now, what then would become of the Pattern? The cleansing would be undone, because Nynaeve's block would never have been removed. I know that this is the danger of balefire as understood, that it creates Pattern destroying paradoxes. But on the other hand, the Wheel can clearly recognise damage to the Pattern, and may be able to use it to its own ends. (I am also aware the Wheel isn't an intelligence as we normally understand it, please ignore the fallacy).

The Bore fits this sort of description. It is damage to the Pattern, with the properties of such damage, but can nonetheless be taken into account by the Pattern or the Wheel or Bela or whatever. For these reasons, I don't think causing further damage to the Pattern will repair said damage.

(1) a channeler in the Fourth Age
(2) also a channeler in the Fourth Age
(3) you get the picture

GonzoTheGreat
09-07-2011, 05:46 AM
An example: If Weird Harold(1) balefired Zombie Sammael(2) but was then balefired by The Unreasoner(3), would Zombie Sammael remain balefired?Better example, which would work considering the finite speed of balefire: if Weird Harold (WH) balefires Zombie Sammael (ZS), and at the same time ZS balefires WH, would they both be gone, neither, one of them (which one) or some sort of superposition of the above possibilities?

Zombie Sammael
09-07-2011, 05:49 AM
Better example, which would work considering the finite speed of balefire: if Weird Harold (WH) balefires Zombie Sammael (ZS), and at the same time ZS balefires WH, would they both be gone, neither, one of them (which one) or some sort of superposition of the above possibilities?

If it was simultaneous they'd both be gone. I'm saying Balefire can't undo Balefire (or the Bore).

GonzoTheGreat
09-07-2011, 05:50 AM
If it was simultaneous they'd both be gone. I'm saying Balefire can't undo Balefire (or the Bore).And on which experiments do you base that opinion?

Zombie Sammael
09-07-2011, 05:54 AM
And on which experiments do you base that opinion?

On the reasoning set out in the post above.

In addition, we know what happens when Balefire hits Balefire, or have a good indication; the threads become linked. That may be an effect of the True Power touching the One Power, however... or it may not be.

AbbeyRoad
09-07-2011, 01:05 PM
On the reasoning set out in the post above.

In addition, we know what happens when Balefire hits Balefire, or have a good indication; the threads become linked. That may be an effect of the True Power touching the One Power, however... or it may not be.
As I asked earlier; if you were to balefire yourself through a loop of gateways, would you be alive or dead, or both? If your thread burned back to before you fired the original beam, then who fired the beam?

Weird Harold
09-07-2011, 01:08 PM
I would be very careful of confusing the properties of the Bore with the properties of the DO. The Bore itself is unique; it is a hole in the pattern through which contact can be made with an extra-dimensional (extra-Pattern) entity, the DO. In fact, the only other phenomena we have which is comparable to the Bore is Balefire, which (regardless of the precise mechanics of it) also "burns" or destroys the Pattern.

An interesting viewpoint on the nature of the Bore, but I wasn't confusing the DO with the Bore.

As I said earlier, the question is one of practicality -- the Bore could be undrilled if anyone had known it needed to be undrilled soon enough. The Wheel/Pattern needed the Bore, The War of Power, the Breaking, et al, so it ensured that nobobdy knew that Balefire was needed nor thought of using it when sufficient power was available for it to be useful.

You might even be correct that the nature of the Bore would make it immune to Balefire's temporal effect, but the paractical aspect of the situation would have prevented anyone from making an attempt anyway.

As was said earlier, it would have made for a very short story. :D

confused at birth
09-07-2011, 01:35 PM
As was said earlier, it would have made for a very short story.

seems like it would have been the report from Lanfears malpractice court case rather than a book

Zombie Sammael
09-07-2011, 02:20 PM
As I asked earlier; if you were to balefire yourself through a loop of gateways, would you be alive or dead, or both? If your thread burned back to before you fired the original beam, then who fired the beam?

According to my interpretation of it, you would still be burned out of the pattern. The pattern theoretically must exist in its own 'version' of time alongside the creator, the dark one and the wheel (potentially TAR too). Thus you would be burned out in pattern-time as of the moment the bf hit. In real time you would cease to exist as of whenever the bf burned you back to.

.@WH I don't think we are in disagreement about anything really. You can't un-bore the bore.

AbbeyRoad
09-07-2011, 03:23 PM
According to my interpretation of it, you would still be burned out of the pattern. The pattern theoretically must exist in its own 'version' of time alongside the creator, the dark one and the wheel (potentially TAR too). Thus you would be burned out in pattern-time as of the moment the bf hit. In real time you would cease to exist as of whenever the bf burned you back to.
So you are arguing that balefire is not the same thing as time travel at all, which I think is the correct and only way to rationally explain it. Good job; I'm sold. That would explain the lingering memories as well. The only thing I don't buy is that inanimate objects incur the same effect.

Zombie Sammael
09-07-2011, 05:23 PM
So you are arguing that balefire is not the same thing as time travel at all, which I think is the correct and only way to rationally explain it. Good job; I'm sold. That would explain the lingering memories as well. The only thing I don't buy is that inanimate objects incur the same effect.

It is and isn't. Within the world of WOT time necessarily has two dimensions: normal time, which is what we experience day to day in our world and is what we would normally understand as "time"; and what I've referred to as pattern-time, but which is probably more accurately referred to as "outside time" or "Creator-time", which is what the Creator experiences, and what the pattern and the Wheel exist in.

The reason for this is that an endless loop such as the Wheel of Time must theoretically have a creation point in order to have a Creator. However, that creation point is outside the realm of perception for normal humans; when the Wheel was created, it was started from whole cloth, presumably at the beginning of the First Age, with all necessary memories of any previous ages already intact, and all effects within that seeming to have causes. However, the Creator, in order to create the Wheel, must necessarily exist separately from that, and Rand's (or possibly Moridin's) thoughts on the nature of the Creator as gardener at least suggest that he is able to move on and perform "other projects" separately from the Wheel. There is some evidence from the books of him doing exactly this; the existence of the worlds of the Ogier and the Aelfinn, for example, suggests that he has created other worlds and that they are in fact accessible from the "main" one, intertwined with it in some way. So there is time within the pattern ("normal time") and time outside the pattern ("pattern-time").

Now, what happens when you use balefire? The thread of whatever is struck with balefire is burned backwards out of the pattern, but the actual burning takes place at the moment the balefire is used. The analogy of a tapestry is actually a very helpful one for understanding this: if you set fire to a single thread in a tapestry, it burns backwards up the tapestry. Eventually, it will make contact with other threads in the tapestry and burn those, ultimately setting the whole thing alight. This is why balefire is so dangerous. However, whilst the "dangling end" is burnt away, it is burned only at the moment you burn it, not before. Now, each thread in the pattern exists both within normal-time and pattern-time. When balefire is used, the thread burns backwards along normal-time, but the effect only actually takes place at one point within pattern-time. Thus you have the effect of the thread appearing to be erased backwards in time, but backwards from one particular point in time. This is why balefiring the balefirer or balefiring the bore (which is like a hole in the middle of the tapestry) doesn't have any effect; the thread has been ended in pattern-time and that's that.

Note that this doesn't stop seemingly paradoxical effects within pattern-time; if a thread crosses another in a particular way and then is burned away, it no longer crosses that thread within normal-time. Pattern-time, on the other hand, doesn't relate to such events; it's purely cosmic in nature, and this is the fundamental difference between the two. In this way, we can see that balefire is a cosmic effect. And incredibly dangerous.

Crispin's Crispian
09-07-2011, 06:27 PM
I think that overstates it a little. honestly. There is really only one time, and that is the time that the Wheel is spinning. Each thread is spun out at the same rate in a given world (let's not complicate this with Mirror Worlds or TAR right now).

If you imagine a tapestry being woven all at once, so the entire thing is getting longer and longer, you get the idea. The current edge of the tapestry is right now. Balefire burns a single thread backward, but the tapestry keeps moving forward at the same rate. It's not time travel, it's just the end of a thread in time.

The key point is that the balefire destroys the portion of the thread that was woven--it's completely gone from the Pattern as if it never existed for that portion.

Terez
09-07-2011, 07:17 PM
But it's not completely gone, because memories remain. I think that's his point. (Not really paying attention.)

The Unreasoner
09-07-2011, 09:05 PM
Edited to add: I worked on this response on-and-off today, so it may seem fragmented. And it appears that Zombie edited his post.
An example: If Weird Harold(1) balefired Zombie Sammael(2) but was then balefired by The Unreasoner(3), would Zombie Sammael remain balefired? To my mind, the answer is no, because Zombie Sammael's thread has already been burned out of the physical manifestation of time, the Pattern. His thread is already gone, and there is no way to get it back, even by balefiring the balefirer. The damage is done, and cannot be repaired by causing further damage. All you would succeed in doing would be to remove Weird Harold from the Pattern as well.
...Do you mean "yes"?
You know, I really like this reasoning (and I'll get back to it later), but unfortunately your example seems to be flawed (if you did mean "yes").
From the quote database:
RJ explained that if person A were to balefire person B, and person C was to balefire person A, if that balefire was strong enough, person B would never have been balefired. This seems like common sense.
So...

Also, while I was in the quote database, I found some other interesting points.
In response to:
The strongest RJ depiction of Balefire we have is Rand's destruction of Rahvin and that undid no more than two or three days
We have:
Brandon: Let’s divorce it. Rand balefires Rahvin as hardcore as he could and Rand is one of the most powerful people to live and he got us, what have you determined, from the lightning killing Mat until balefire killed Rahvin, I’d guess fifteen minutes.
Matt: Well, he at least got us fifteen minutes. We don’t know how far back, we just know up to that moment.
Brandon: Well, we do know because if it had been too much further than that we would have noticed a lot of discrepancies in the Pattern from things he’d done...
Matt: Let’s say thirty minutes to an hour, at the most.
And the attack was only planned a day ahead. I suppose the lightning was actually channeled, and not caused by wards.

And to Zombie:
Paul Ward: (Possible questions: Does balefire affect itself? Can you balefire balefire? If you balefire another person, but then you get balefired, what happens to the person you balefire?)
RJ: The balefire weave exists wholly or partly outside time, which removes it from its own effect.
Now on to your points:
I would be very careful of confusing the properties of the Bore with the properties of the DO. The Bore itself is unique; it is a hole in the pattern through which contact can be made with an extra-dimensional (extra-Pattern) entity, the DO. In fact, the only other phenomena we have which is comparable to the Bore is Balefire, which (regardless of the precise mechanics of it) also "burns" or destroys the Pattern.

...

I think that the Bore works similarly. It is damage to the Pattern, just as a balefired thread is, but on a slightly larger scale. Balefiring a mouse or research student who activated whatever mechanism was used to create the Bore wouldn't cause the Bore to close up, since all you would do is damage the Pattern (slightly) further.
Slightly? Lol.
This is the discussion I was interested in having. Like Weird Harold said, there are questions regarding the practicality of balefiring the guilty mouse, but I am far more interested in the possible effectiveness. Some potentially relevant points:

1. Balefired threads can be recovered with balefire. I don't know if I like it, but it appears to be canon.

2. The Dark One cannot step outside of time to transmigrate balefired souls. (I seem to remember someone postulating that the DO could transmigrate souls hit by weak balefire, but this does not seem to be the case. I would be happy to hear the arguments for such a theory though. And whether the idea came from Terez or Felix)

3. Just as balefire is in some way independent of time, the Dark One may be as well. But it is important to note that for entities operating within the Pattern, time is binding. And it always moves forward, never back. So while (theoretically) the Dark One and balefire should be indifferent to time, they both are constrained somewhat while they operate within the Pattern. Balefire is dependent on a channeler, and so it can only affect events relatively close to the moment of its creation. And while the Dark One is probably free of time in his own universe, his actions are somewhat restricted within the Pattern. And this may highlight the nature of the Bore-as it is a 'thinness' in the Pattern, not an absence. As long as the War of Power lasts, meaningful interactions between the two sides must have some familiar ground: which is apparently time (and so, the Pattern. Or at least a thin and fragmented portion of it). Depending on how far the Dark One is restricted, the Bore may be resealable with balefire, as the Bore is still a part of the Pattern. In fact, this may explain the 'frustration' of the Dark One with time. Destroying time is his most basic purpose, but he must work within it to do so.

4. Not so much a point as an idle thought, but as I was trying to come up with a system of monads for the WoT universe to explain the metaphysics, I began contemplating the nature of the interactions between different sorts of entities. For instance, the Dark One is of a substance contrary to the Pattern, and his interactions with Pattern entities are defined by the breakdown in order and reality. Ta'veren are of the Pattern and exist to perpetuate the weaving of the Wheel, and so they naturally oppose the Dark One. More interesting are cases like Moridin (a Pattern entity opposing the Wheel) or Fain (a Pattern entity opposing both ta'veren/the Wheel and the forces contrary to the Pattern). But in this case, it seems that within the Pattern, balefire (independent of time, and originating within the Pattern and time (even TP balefire requires a channeler of the Pattern)) is more powerful than the Dark One (independent of time, but originating outside of the Pattern/time as well).
Despite the chronal effects of Balefire, I don't think you can repair damage to the Pattern itself by damaging it further; the initial damage has already been caused. This differs from the Pattern's compensation for other effects of Balefire (for example, flooding a balefired boat with water) because those other threads are still within the Pattern; the Pattern can course-correct and make it right. In fact, since Nynaeve's block disappearing was arguably essential for later events crucial to the Pattern's survival (e.g. the cleansing) it's clear that the Pattern is able to predict Balefire usage to some extent and allow it.
I don't know if the Pattern could predict balefire. Although it originates within the Pattern, it is also removed from it (and is contrary to it). I definitely do not think that the flooding of the boat was a Pattern Level Event. I would prefer balefire to affect inanimate objects time-wise as well.
If Moghedien was powerfully balefired now, what then would become of the Pattern? The cleansing would be undone, because Nynaeve's block would never have been removed. I know that this is the danger of balefire as understood, that it creates Pattern destroying paradoxes. But on the other hand, the Wheel can clearly recognise damage to the Pattern, and may be able to use it to its own ends. (I am also aware the Wheel isn't an intelligence as we normally understand it, please ignore the fallacy).
Presumably the Pattern would provide Nynaeve with another opportunity to resolve her block. Or Rand could have just linked with someone else. Cadsuane, perhaps?
The Bore fits this sort of description. It is damage to the Pattern, with the properties of such damage, but can nonetheless be taken into account by the Pattern or the Wheel or Bela or whatever. For these reasons, I don't think causing further damage to the Pattern will repair said damage.
As I stated above, some damage can be resolved with further damage (in a sense, obviously if 'someone' balefired Weird Harold to bring you back, the Pattern would still bear damage, just slightly more and with a different cause). But the Bore's nature may be fundamentally different to balefire scars, so I will not press the point.

The concepts of different experiences with time is an interesting one. I am reminded of my theology lessons in 10th grade. The Dominican claimed that time is 'above' humans while they are on Earth or are in purgatory. Humans cannot manipulate it. God experiences time as a single instant: past, present, and future are one; Creation and the end of Time occur simultaneously. Angels are a different matter though, apparently they can manipulate time to some extent, but still experience time as a thing with magnitude, as they were created within it. I thought of it as time is Ax^2+Bx+C is time to humans, and the derivative is time to angels. The double derivative, being a simple constant, I understood as time to God.

Of course, it was a bizarre class with many topics lacking practical applications. But the Dominicans are a tight assed lot. Education and philosophy is better left to the Jesuits.


Unfortunately, the only information we can glean from RJ's descriptions of Balefire is the corelation between beam "thickness" (diameter) and temporal effect. That corelation is very solid.
Within a very limited sample.
There is no suggestion of any other corelation or variability is the formation or use of Balefire.
Well that, and your apparent frustration with balefire's consistent inconsistency between authors and between the books and the interviews is precisely why I am proposing this three-property explanation. It is an attempt to reconcile various quotes.
I do think that you are overthinking the variability of Balefire; RJ's descriptions simply aren't detailed enough to support your extrapolations.
Perhaps. But again, this is part of my point: the canon includes Sanderson's descriptions, and the information from the interviews. It may all be speculation, but it is supported to some extent beyond RJ's descriptions.
We will have to agree to disagree if you see any possibility of RJ's comments allowing the described behavior in the Panarch's Museum.
Well, this is probably the hardest point to reconcile. Particularly if you assume that inaninmate objects are subject to temporal effects. Which I do. To me, it seems that Occam's razor would favor Nynaeve's boat being flooded because of the temporal effect of balefire on the removed slice, and the issue with the display cases in Tanchico being explained by a negligible temporal potential of the beam that hit it.
From RJ's descriptions, Balefire only needs to make contact to completely consume an animate target. There doesn't seem to be any corelation between exposure time and temporal effect -- just beam size/power level. Higher power levels appear to be harder to control, but Rand's use of high power levels declines as he gains experience so the appearance of control difficulty at higher power levels might be illusary -- except for the warning about the Fluted Balck Rod being hard to control.
My comments on 'saturation' were probably a little unclear. I was still working the explanation out in my mind at the time. But I believe that a single unit of balefire (like the "photon" of balefire) would be all that is necessary to completely burn a thread. Any thread, be it a molecule of salt or Rahvin. Part of my point in my last post (evidently presented poorly) was that exposure time was not a likely contributor to the temporal effect. Although I also questioned the plausibility of beam size playing a role. Primarily because balefiring the evil mouse with a man-sized beam seems to ignore the balefire 'wasted', in a sense, by going past the mouse. It may be the case that the temporal effect is generally accidental and impossible to regulate. Maybe the maximum amount of time that can be undone is directly related to the size of the target. I doubt it, but it may be the case. I rather think that the correlation between beam diameter and temporal intensity seen with Rahvin is explained by Rand's fury with Rahvin, he channeled balefire with intensity and diameter comensurate with his anger. And the black rod, being the only 'official' source of balefire to the Tower would naturally be labeled as especially dangerous. The difficulty of control could indicate a static state to the produced beam, the lack of knowledge on manipulating the beam's properties with the ter'angreal, or just general prudence with balefire. Which is profoundly dangerous even with minimal temporal properties.
There is no mention of a controlability mechanism in any of RJ or Brandon's descriptions. The only mention of control is regard to Rand's reduction of power and duration (down to "finger-thin beams, cut off as soon as they made contact" after Balefiring Rahvin with a "man-thick bar of light" and erasing hours or days.
Part of this debate seems to be centered on terminology-for instance, what do you mean by "power"?

Balefire beams have four quantifiable properties. Perhaps, as you seem to believe, some are inherently dependent on other properties, and these properties are not distinct or independently manipulated, but the beam itself clearly has:
1. Duration (definitely regulated by the channeler)
2. Magnitude of temporal effect (I believe it is possible to regulate this property, and call it "intensity", but perhaps it is not.)
3. Beam width (Almost certainly regulated by the channeler. I link it to the 'volume' of the beam itself. I do not think that it affects anything other than the area of effect.)
4. Speed it penetrates inanimate objects (I see it as a function of density, more units of balefire per unit of volume is essentially more units of balefire per unit of time. More units burns the threads of the molecules faster, and allows the beam to 'spread' past the object or throughout the object faster. This is the least fundamental point to my explanation, and is included mainly for the convenience it provides in explaining spread and speed.)

I see all four as independendent, and as individually modifiable. I see the first as generally irrelevant. I also take the 'removed from time' aspect into account, as I think balefire weaves do not actually 'burn' the threads until the beam is released. I see the entire instance of any single beam as an instantaneous effect, similar to how photons only exist in a single instant. Things may appear to be removed at different times if the beam is swept accross a group of targets, but in reality all threads burned by a specific beam ceased to exist simultaneously at some point in the past. I have dropped the 'control' aspect, as it seems unnecessary considering both the directional nature of balefire and the relative densities of gases and solids/liquids.

Two more points from the quote database:
Matt: Question—Did Robert Jordan leave a power to time comparison, as to how much time is burned back on a thread using balefire? Is there a calculation that says x amount of power will burn back x amount of time on a thread?
Brandon: M.A.F.O – Maria and Find Out. What he did leave, he left a lot of stuff, there is discussion of these things in the notes. I need to look and see if there is an actual equation. He was very focused on strength of the power and things like that. He has probably told you before, I think I’ve seen a copy of that on notes and things. He did leave scales on exactly how powerful each person is . . .
Maria answers:
RAFO. Sorry, but we are doing an encyclopedia, and I have to reserve some things in case we want to put them in there.
So it seems that there may be an underlying, consistent, mechanism by which balefire operates. While reverse-engineering the mechanism is primarily speculation at this point, it is not inherently futile.
Mike on Twitter - 19 January 2011
What would have happened if someone were to balefire Verin's cup of poison to remove its existence when it was consumed?
Brandon
So far, I believe we've only see Balefire used to remove living things from the Pattern that way. Am I wrong? @Terez27
Terez
There has been some serious debate over Nynaeve and her boat. Some think the rowers caused...
Terez
...the temporal anomaly, while some think it had to be the boat itself. I forget the arguments...
Terez
I remember the argument now. The boat was filled w/water at the moment of balefire, which rowers don't explain.
This seems to be a silly question, as the poison in the cup did not kill Verin. The guilty compounds were already in her body. Of course, someone could balefire the vat of poison used to achieve the same potential effect (Although Verin would likely be unable to suggest the possibility, and no one is accusing Egwene of possessing the requisite cleverness). Fortunately Brandon addressed the generalized problem, specifically: do inanimate objects experience temporal effects from balefire? While he didn't answer, RJ did, according to the relevant footnote reproduced below:
Not long after this, due to a random chain of events, we found an old report on a letter sent to Thomas Howard in 1997. (See below.) RJ confirmed that balefire does burn back inanimate objects in time as well as living things, which would appear to explain the boat phenomenon (which has been a hot topic of discussion at Theoryland for many years, and knowing us, this remembered but undocumented report was probably mentioned quite a few times in the earlier debates - before this database was created there was no easy way to track down half-remembered quotes).

AbbeyRoad
09-07-2011, 10:56 PM
1. Balefired threads can be recovered with balefire. I don't know if I like it, but it appears to be canon.
I hope not. Then we are talking about time travel, which would introduce all sorts of paradoxical problems.

Tamyrlin
09-07-2011, 10:59 PM
2. The Dark One cannot step outside of time to transmigrate balefired souls. (I seem to remember someone postulating that the DO could transmigrate souls hit by weak balefire, but this does not seem to be the case. I would be happy to hear the arguments for such a theory though. And whether the idea came from Terez or Felix)

RJ answered a question from me about Transmigration.


Q: There are many theories that attempt to create a connection of time duration to the transmigration of the dead Forsaken. Are there time and/or power constraints on the Dark One's ability to transmigrate souls?

A: There are definitely time constraints on the Dark One's power to transmigrate a soul. The soul doesn't have to be secured immediately - that is, the Dark One doesn't have to be ready to snatch the soul at the instant of death - but the longer that passes after the death, the less chance that the Dark One will be able to secure the soul. Someone who has been killed with balefire in actuality died before the apparent time of his or her death, and thus the window of opportunity for the Dark One to secure that soul for transmigration is gone before the Dark One can know that the soul must be secured unless the amount of balefire used is very small. Remember that the more balefire is used, the further back the target's thread is burned out of the pattern. After the soul is secured, then a suitable body must be acquired and stripped of the (former) owner's memory and soul to make way for the favored one. By the way, what constitutes a suitable body from the Dark One's perspective is not that of the recipient. Certainly Aginor would never have chosen to be reincarnated in his, shall we say, less than imposing body, nor would the womanizing Balthamel have chosen to be reincarnated as a beautiful woman. It was only chance that Moridin ended up in a body that is young, fairly good looking and physically imposing. Those things simply don't matter to the Dark One. But the body has to be basically healthy and sound, and neither too young nor too old. After all, the Dark One wants his servants to be effective, and a body that meets those basic requirements is more desirable than one that doesn't. Since there is no stockpile of such bodies, the only way for someone to die and immediately be reincarnated would be a matter of pure chance. That is, the death occurred when a suitable body was on hand for some other reason. There are a few other limits and constraints, but I won't go into them here, since I may want to use them in the books, and I would rather they come as a surprise if I do.

The Unreasoner
09-07-2011, 11:29 PM
I hope not. Then we are talking about time travel, which would introduce all sorts of paradoxical problems.
Not necessarily. It seems the most significant issue is raised by Zombie, with his idea of permanent Pattern damage. It seems to be canon either way. I saw no direct quotes, but there are two people independently paraphrasing the point. Whatever my personal feelings on the issue, for a question so detail-oriented and with a straightforward answer given, I am tempted to take the paraphrasers at their word.

RJ answered a question from me about Transmigration.
Well this seems to be perfectly reasonable. But:
Someone who has been killed with balefire in actuality died before the apparent time of his or her death, and thus the window of opportunity for the Dark One to secure that soul for transmigration is gone before the Dark One can know that the soul must be secured unless the amount of balefire used is very small.
Amount. This doesn't play well with my explanation or Weird Harold's. It looks like I'll have to reconsider the 'saturation' hypothesis.

The Unreasoner
09-08-2011, 12:03 AM
Concerning clothes and corpses...
I'm going to pretend for a moment that Tam never posted that quote, and consider balefiring clothed people with my interpretation.

Balefiring corpses seems like it would be akin to balefiring a rock, molecular threads up against units of balefire (I was going to start calling them balesparks, but now I need to figure out if I still think they even exist). But when a beam hits a person, the entire body is consumed. But why? Are dead skin cells intimately linked to the soul? Are stomach contents? Or are their threads perhaps burned in a manner similar to the burning of clothing?

I favor an element of self-imposed reality in Randland, similar to T'A'R. In fact, one extreme incarnation of the theory treats all worlds as subsets of T'A'R. And so I think that the soul/awareness of a person is the 'primary' thread, and through self-image it is metaphysically connected to the physical body. As I feel that a single balespark (what the hell) is sufficient to burn the soul's thread, the physical body of a balefired person would be treated as an inanimate corpse nearly instantaneously, as far as spreading is concerned. And since the soul has nonexistent metaphysical distance between itself and every particle of the body, the balefire would spread to the entire body simultaneously, and to the clothes immediately after. Therefore, barring superhuman reflexes for the channeler, clothing would vanish so quickly that it would appear to be the inevitable result of balefiring someone.

Weird Harold
09-08-2011, 12:15 AM
RJ answered a question from me about Transmigration.

Thanks for that quote, Tam. I was going to make the point that it was the DO's reaction time that made a difference in Transmigrations. Balfire simply erases all or part of the time the DO has to react.

(I seem to remember someone postulating that the DO could transmigrate souls hit by weak balefire, but this does not seem to be the case. I would be happy to hear the arguments for such a theory though. And whether the idea came from Terez or Felix)


See the quote posted by Tamyrlin. Weak Balefire or "Small Amount" would seem to be synonomous.

And the attack was only planned a day ahead. I suppose the lightning was actually channeled, and not caused by wards.


The time Rahvin was burned back was at least ten minutes but could have been much longer -- if the lightening bolt was triggered by a trap set as part of the plot to aim Rand at Sammael, it could have been weeks. I generally use the figure two to three days as a maximum rather than an absolute estimation of the time burned back.

Within a very limited sample.

RJ's descriptions of Balefire were indeed sparse, but also remarkable consistent, with the strength of the channeler closely tracking description of the "bar of light." Descriptions that include temporal effects are even sparser -- only three or four, IIRC.

With the exception of Rand (and the Fluted Black Rod) every channeler has made a maximum effort to generate balefire at all -- Moraine, Nyneave, Moggy, and Rand when Balefiring Rahvin all pushed as much power as they could handle. It is from relative ability that the power estimations of Balefire are drawn from.

If balefire could be concentrated into a finer beam to concentrate its intensity, every channeler using Balefire would have done so.

Well that, and your apparent frustration with balefire's consistent inconsistency between authors and between the books and the interviews is precisely why I am proposing this three-property explanation. It is an attempt to reconcile various quotes.

When Rand did resort to weaker Balefire He did so by reducing the diameter of the beam; If he could have kept the 'area of effect' while reducing the intensity, he would have been better off.

Perhaps. But again, this is part of my point: the canon includes Sanderson's descriptions, and the information from the interviews. It may all be speculation, but it is supported to some extent beyond RJ's descriptions.

Canon definitely includes descriptions in the text and the Brandon's descriptions can be explained by the conventions established by RJ. It is the interview quotes -- one of RJ's and most of Brandon's that upset the conventions RJ established in the text.

I rather think that the correlation between beam diameter and temporal intensity seen with Rahvin is explained by Rand's fury with Rahvin, he channeled balefire with intensity and diameter comensurate with his anger.

That is why that episode in particular is useful for comparing Balefire Intensity. Every channeler we have seen using Ba;efire has done so in anger -- creating the most powerful and concentrated Balefire they could manage with their strength in the OP. It is from those "cast in anger" episodes that the corelation of beam width to intensity/temporal effect is drawn.

Weird Harold
09-08-2011, 12:27 AM
But when a beam hits a person, the entire body is consumed. But why? Are dead skin cells intimately linked to the soul? Are stomach contents? Or are their threads perhaps burned in a manner similar to the burning of clothing?

Consider that a person/creature is seldom Balefired at a spot that person/creature has occupied, unmoving, for the entire duration of the temporal effect. Clothing, dead skin cells, weapons, and other acoutremonts traveled with the person/creature so the action of the person in transporting the objects into position to be balefired are undone -- the objects aren't consumed, they're dragged back in time.

Presumably, objects dragged back in time are also dragged out of phase with "normal time" so they are not visible -- much the way that refelections objects that change position frequently are ephemeral in T'A'R.

Crispin's Crispian
09-08-2011, 01:07 PM
Consider that a person/creature is seldom Balefired at a spot that person/creature has occupied, unmoving, for the entire duration of the temporal effect. Clothing, dead skin cells, weapons, and other acoutremonts traveled with the person/creature so the action of the person in transporting the objects into position to be balefired are undone -- the objects aren't consumed, they're dragged back in time.

Presumably, objects dragged back in time are also dragged out of phase with "normal time" so they are not visible -- much the way that refelections objects that change position frequently are ephemeral in T'A'R.
I think this is a great explanation. If you killed someone with a small enough amount of balefire, and the person had been standing in one spot long enough, theoretically the clothes could still be there (with a hole).

As far as why balefire spreads to the entire body, I always thought of it rather like a hologram. Shine a laser on a tiny part of a hologram, and you illuminate the whole thing. Cut a hologram into pieces, and each piece still contains the image of the whole.

Check this out:


...A hologram is a three-dimensional photograph made with the aid of a laser. To make a hologram, the object to be photographed is first bathed in the light of a laser beam. Then a second laser beam is bounced off the reflected light of the first and the resulting interference pattern (the area where the two laser beams commingle) is captured on film. When the film is developed, it looks like a meaningless swirl of light and dark lines. But as soon as the developed film is illuminated by another laser beam, a three-dimensional image of the original object appears.

The three-dimensionality of such images is not the only remarkable characteristic of holograms. If a hologram of a rose is cut in half and then illuminated by a laser, each half will still be found to contain the entire image of the rose. Indeed, even if the halves are divided again, each snippet of film will always be found to contain a smaller but intact version of the original image. Unlike normal photographs, every part of a hologram contains all the information possessed by the whole.
I bolded the first part because it was an accidental moment of awesomeness when I found this article. :)

Anyway, if every part of the body is interconnected like this, then any part hit with balefire transmits the effect to the entire body.