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Zombie Sammael
04-22-2012, 11:05 AM
I've been thinking a lot, in general, about the motif of eyes in the series, and trying to come up with something worthwhile from it. It may eventually prove to be a theory, or possibly an essay, but in order to get some ideas together coherently, I thought it would be a good idea to start a thread to discuss the topic.

There can be no doubt that eyes are important in the Wheel Of Time series. There are numerous examples of eyes being mentioned in connection with Light. Here are a few I can think of:


In TEOTW, The Dark One "means to blind the eye of the world".
The Aiel refer to the Dark One as "sightblinder".
Mat gives up "half the light of the world to save the world" by sacrificing his eye; this is foretold by a Dream of Egwene's in which he places his eye on a balance scale
Myrddraal, the representatives of the Shadow, have no eyes; "the look of the eyeless is fear"; the Dark One's representative in the world, Shaidar Haran, is a Myrddraal.
Seanchan refer to those who have lost status as "lowered eyes".
Rand mentions the importance of eyes in TSR when discussing Hadnan Kadere and his party with Mat; the party includes Lanfear.
In TOM, when confronting Darkfriends among his allies, they are unable to meet Rand's eyes; whether this is a new power or a result of a tip-off from Verin, it remains an example of the importance of eyes.
Carrion-eaters are said to be the Dark One's eyes.
The highest or lowest hand in dice games played by Matrim Cauthon and others is called "The Dark One's Eyes.
The Aes Sedai employ networks of informers known as "eyes and ears".


I find it interesting that eyes as a topic appear to have been a little overlooked by the community; 13th Depository has a page on the symbolism of "hands" but not of eyes.

In a real world sense, "the eyes are the window to the soul" is a common saying, and this is borne out by the inability of darkfriends to meet Rand Sedai's eyes; there are also specific associations of eyes with the concept of light.

As I said above, I'm unsure of where exactly I intend to go with this, so I'm throwing it out there to get ideas and inputs. Are there examples I've missed? What does it all mean? Will the final confrontation between Rand and the DO be a staring match?

Tomp
04-22-2012, 11:08 AM
How about Goldeneyes?

Zombie Sammael
04-22-2012, 11:12 AM
How about Goldeneyes?

Good one. Actually very interesting indeed, when you compare that with "gold" as a colour associated with light (e.g. "Veins of Gold"), perhaps marking Perrin, Elyas, wolves and wolfbrothers as agents of the light.

Landro
04-22-2012, 01:06 PM
You need eyes to see the light. Without eyes there's only darkness.

And the DF lord at Maradon ripped out his own eyes

Zombie Sammael
04-22-2012, 01:18 PM
You need eyes to see the light. Without eyes there's only darkness.

And the DF lord at Maradon ripped out his own eyes

Another good one, and yeah, that does seem to be the overall theme. I'm just wondering whether it's something that might grow a theory, or more suited to an academic essay.

Finding the examples might help us work out what's going on with one of Rand's "new powers" (if that it be), I suppose.

Frenzy
04-22-2012, 01:39 PM
I think Muradin ripped his eyes out while in the glass columns of Rhuidean, rather than see the true history of his people.

Zombie Sammael
04-22-2012, 02:02 PM
I think Muradin ripped his eyes out while in the glass columns of Rhuidean, rather than see the true history of his people.

Interesting, because that's eyes being used to avoid truth. It seems to associate truth with the light given the associations we've seen already.

SauceyBlueConfetti
04-22-2012, 02:05 PM
I had an idea many years ago about Darkfriends and losing an eye. There are a bit too many one eyed characters in the books. I was mocked at the time. :rolleyes: Given the 'ol stink eye if I recall.

Zombie Sammael
04-22-2012, 02:20 PM
I had an idea many years ago about Darkfriends and losing an eye. There are a bit too many one eyed characters in the books. I was mocked at the time. :rolleyes: Given the 'ol stink eye if I recall.

Possibly a tie-in to the Dark Mat theory-ling? "In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is king." Of course, that just makes me think of the eye of Sauron.

Khoram
04-22-2012, 02:40 PM
Possibly a tie-in to the Dark Mat theory-ling? "In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is king." Of course, that just makes me think of the eye of Sauron.

There's the idea of the saa from using too much of the True Power. And the absence of eyes, instead their being caverns of fire with Ishy prior to his Moridin-izing.

Weird Harold
04-22-2012, 06:18 PM
I think Muradin ripped his eyes out while in the glass columns of Rhuidean, rather than see the true history of his people.

Interesting, because that's eyes being used to avoid truth. It seems to associate truth with the light given the associations we've seen already.

Muradin is also a literal example of "Not believing his own eyes."

Tomp
04-22-2012, 07:07 PM
Include Uno and his painted eye patch as well.

Sei'taer
04-22-2012, 08:39 PM
The Eye of the World.

Khoram
04-22-2012, 08:40 PM
The Eye of the World.

It's been mentioned. :p

Tamyrlin
04-23-2012, 03:08 AM
TITLE: The World of Robert Jordan's the Wheel of Time
CHAPTER: The Wheel and the Pattern
Perhaps the strangest of all known ter'angreal are two tall redstone doorways, similar to yet different from each other in form and function, which do not require the user to be a channeler. Each stands independent of any supporting structure and is twisted strangely so that the eye keeps slipping away from the contour of its shape. One of these, decorated with three sinuous lines that run from top to bottom on each upright, resides in the Stone of Tear. Anyone passing through it enters a strange world where he or she is allowed to ask three questions and receive truthful answers. By an ancient compact with the inhabitants of the other side, no lamps, torches, items made of iron, or musical instruments are allowed within.

TITLE: The World of Robert Jordan's the Wheel of Time
CHAPTER: Imperial Control
The members of the Imperial family and of the Blood also seldom speak directly to anyone of lesser rank than themselves, save to bestow an immense honor upon them. Most communication is done through a “Voice,” a servant, usually hereditary, who actually speaks for his/her master or mistress. The Voice receives instructions through a variety of subtle nonverbal gestures from the master. It is forbidden for a person of lesser rank to make eye contact with one of greater. Even the Voice must never look the master directly in the eye while watching for signals or commands.

INTERVIEW: 1994
Stories from the LOC Signing Tour (Paraphrased)

JOHN-MARK TURNER
RJ was very patient and enthusiastic. He looked different than the picture mostly due to the dark tint in his glasses.

ROBERT JORDAN
RJ also mentioned being unable to attend West Point due to poor vision in his left eye.

And how about the pronunciations of Nynaeve's name and the Aiel and Aes Sedai? :)

You could do a write-up for sure; start researching it. :)

GonzoTheGreat
04-23-2012, 03:50 AM
There's also the Watcher of the Seals, and the unseen watchers that were dogging Rand in the beginning of TGH.

Zombie Sammael
04-23-2012, 05:01 AM
I realised earlier that the blind Rand prophecies were a certain example of just the kind of conceit I'm getting at. That is, if they're unfulfilled. After all, a blind man who could previously see would have only a memory of light.

Jasin Natael
04-23-2012, 06:07 AM
You know, I could make a similar argument for breasts being pivotal to the last battle, based on how often they are mentioned.

Zombie Sammael
04-23-2012, 06:14 AM
You know, I could make a similar argument for breasts being pivotal to the last battle, based on how often they are mentioned.

Name one example of breasts being important in prophecy or associated with light or shadow. It's about symbolism, and like I said, I'm not at the stage where it's a theory or even an essay yet. There might well be scope for an essay about breasts in the WOT series, though; they're obviously important.

GonzoTheGreat
04-23-2012, 07:10 AM
Name one example of breasts being important in prophecy or associated with light or shadow.
The Answer:
The unstained tower breaks and bends knee to the forgotten sign. The seas rage, and stormclouds gather unseen. Beyond the horizon, hidden fires swell, and serpents nestle in the bosom. What was exalted is cast down; what was cast down is raised up. Order burns to clear his path.

The Prophecies of the Dragon translation by Jeorad Manyard Governor of the Province of Andor for the High King, Artur Paendrag Tanreall
This answer, you may notice, was given to us by Elayne's ancestor.

Zombie Sammael
04-23-2012, 07:20 AM
The Answer:

This answer, you may notice, was given to us by Elayne's ancestor.

Kind of illustrates my points. Breasts are very rarely a metaphor for anything. Although, we could play a game where we go through and replace all mentions of "light" in the series with "breasts". "Give up half the breasts of the world to save the world"...

Crispin's Crispian
04-23-2012, 10:45 AM
The eyes play an important role in the very Prologue, "Dragonmount:"

Sudden sweat made tracks down Lews Therin's face through the dust and dirt. He remembered, a cloudy memory like a dream of a dream, but he knew it true. His howl beat at the walls, the howl of a man who had discovered his soul damned by his own hand, and he clawed at his face as if to tear away the sight of what he had done. Everywhere he looked his eyes found the dead. Torn they were, or broken or burned, or half-consumed by stone. Everywhere lay lifeless faces he knew, faces he loved. Old servants and friends of his childhood, faithful companions through the long years of battle. And his children. His own sons and daughters, sprawled like broken dolls, play stilled forever. All slain by his hand. His children's faces accused him, blank eyes asking why, and his tears were no answer. The Betrayer's laughter flogged him, drowned out his howls. He could not bear the faces, the pain. He could not bear to remain any longer. Desperately he reached out to the True Source, to tainted saidin, and he Traveled.

The land around him was flat and empty. A river flowed nearby, straight and broad, but he could sense there were no people within a hundred leagues. He was alone, as alone as a man could be while still alive, yet he could not escape memory. The eyes pursued him through the endless caverns of his mind. He could not hide from them. His children's eyes. Ilyena's eyes. Tears glistened on his cheeks as he turned his face to the sky. "Light, forgive me!" He did not believe it could come, forgiveness. Not for what he had done. But he shouted to the sky anyway, begged for what he could not believe he could receive. "Light, forgive me!"

Tamyrlin
04-23-2012, 10:53 AM
TITLE: Shadow Rising
CHAPTER: 17 - Deceptions
A glance back proved her right. The Mistress of the Kitchens, a winecask on legs, was beaming after her approvingly from the dining hall doorway. Who would have thought the woman had been a beauty in her youth, or would have a place in her heart for pretty, flirtatious girls? "Lively," she called them. Who would have suspected she would decide to take "Elmindreda" under her stout wing? It was hardly a comfortable position. Laras kept a protective eye on Min, an eye that seemed to find her anywhere in the Tower grounds. Min smiled back and patted her hair, now a round black cap of curls. Burn the woman! Doesn't she have something to cook, or some scullion to yell at?

I like this one because of the implications that Laras will have some hand in the final book.

Btw - all of this does make proper pronunciation a bit more important, especially to RJ, if there is meaning built into words like Aes Sedai and Aiel.

Davian93
04-23-2012, 10:58 AM
Larasandred...

Khoram
04-23-2012, 12:03 PM
The Unseen Watchers in Tel'aran'rhiod have played a large role, especially in the exploits of the Wonder Girls.

Maesterbaevern
04-23-2012, 01:34 PM
I realised earlier that the blind Rand prophecies were a certain example of just the kind of conceit I'm getting at. That is, if they're unfulfilled. After all, a blind man who could previously see would have only a memory of light.

When Rand goes Dark, he is "blind" but with a Memory of Light, he can be brought back?

Zombie Sammael
04-23-2012, 01:39 PM
When Rand goes Dark, he is "blind" but with a Memory of Light, he can be brought back?

Trouble is he got brought back with The Gathering Storm, which, erm... storms have lightning I guess? An interesting line of thought though.

There's a lot of stuff here, clearly. I think I need to do a bit of work looking at eyes as a symbol IRL, but the in-context stuff might well be enough. I doubt there is a theory as such in here, but it's certainly something which, as a topic, could lead to a deeper understanding of the series.

Keelan86
04-23-2012, 05:26 PM
Eyes are the gateways to the soul, which DO has a penchant for using to his own will. So a DF ripping out his/her own eyes maybe an attempt to free themselves from the the ties that bind.

McCaber
04-24-2012, 12:51 AM
Kind of illustrates my points. Breasts are very rarely a metaphor for anything. Although, we could play a game where we go through and replace all mentions of "light" in the series with "breasts". "Give up half the breasts of the world to save the world"...

A world with only half as many breasts is not a world worth saving.

Zombie Sammael
04-24-2012, 04:32 AM
A world with only half as many breasts is not a world worth saving.

"Thank you my son. The breasts, the blessed breasts."

</derailing own thread>

Weiramon
04-24-2012, 10:27 AM
In a real world sense, "the eyes are the window to the soul" is a common saying, and this is borne out by the inability of darkfriends to meet Rand Sedai's eyes; there are also specific associations of eyes with the concept of light.

Burn my eyes, this is preposterous!

Next you'll claim something even more ridiculous, like gray men are difficult to look at or some such nonsense. Windows to the soul! Pshaw!

Zombie Sammael
04-24-2012, 10:36 AM
Burn my eyes, this is preposterous!

Next you'll claim something even more ridiculous, like gray men are difficult to look at or some such nonsense. Windows to the soul! Pshaw!

Another good example, communicated as only you could (or should).

ETA: thinking about Grey Men makes me recall the zomara, or doll-eyed servants. I've always been a little disappointed that those weren't real people who'd had their souls crushed out of them or somesuch, but their black eyes are another example of shadowspawn or darkfriends having eyes which are unusual or darkened in some way. Even the name "Grey Man" suggests something halfway between light and darkness; in a way, grey as a colour is the shade of twilight. Appropriate for an assassin only partially visible.

Seth Baker
04-24-2012, 04:38 PM
Watchers over the Waves.

Going off the Nynaeve & Aes Sedai thing... Cairhien too.

Khoram
04-24-2012, 04:52 PM
ETA: Even the name "Grey Man" suggests something halfway between light and darkness; in a way, grey as a colour is the shade of twilight. Appropriate for an assassin only partially visible.

But if a Grey Man is halfway betweeb Light and Dark, couldn't you just call them "the Average Joe"? I mean, we all have both sides in us - we're all able to perform both good and bad deeds, putting us halfway between good and bad.

Heh. Maybe everybody will die in TG and the Grey Men will be left to repopulate the Land. XD

Zombie Sammael
04-24-2012, 05:05 PM
But if a Grey Man is halfway betweeb Light and Dark, couldn't you just call them "the Average Joe"? I mean, we all have both sides in us - we're all able to perform both good and bad deeds, putting us halfway between good and bad.

Heh. Maybe everybody will die in TG and the Grey Men will be left to repopulate the Land. XD

Actually, in the world of WOT ordinary humans are of the Light, though not incapable of dimming. Grey Men have dimmed a lot. Also note that light is colour (there's a bit of that going on with the Ajahs) but to be grey is to be colourless (the colour is used in a different way in the Grey Ajah).

Khoram
04-24-2012, 05:16 PM
Actually, in the world of WOT ordinary humans are of the Light, though not incapable of dimming. Grey Men have dimmed a lot. Also note that light is colour (there's a bit of that going on with the Ajahs) but to be grey is to be colourless (the colour is used in a different way in the Grey Ajah).

Not only are they capable of dimming, they're able to completely shut out the Light.

If we continue with the "light-as-colour" theme, why not make the Grey Ajah purple or violet? I'm sure this has been touched upon elsewhere...

Zombie Sammael
04-24-2012, 05:36 PM
Not only are they capable of dimming, they're able to completely shut out the Light.

If we continue with the "light-as-colour" theme, why not make the Grey Ajah purple or violet? I'm sure this has been touched upon elsewhere...

It has. The reasoning has to do with the clothing dyes that would be available - purple fades to grey, orange to brown. In the case of the Ajah, grey represents compromise, a mid-point between black and white. Note that in another Ajah, Black definitely symbolises the Shadow, and it could be argued that that symbolism is also present in the White Ajah.

Khoram
04-24-2012, 05:52 PM
It has. The reasoning has to do with the clothing dyes that would be available - purple fades to grey, orange to brown. In the case of the Ajah, grey represents compromise, a mid-point between black and white. Note that in another Ajah, Black definitely symbolises the Shadow, and it could be argued that that symbolism is also present in the White Ajah.

But there's also the ancient seal of the Aes Sedai - the white Tear and the blaxk Dragin's Fang. In that instance, black didn't symbolize the Shadow.

Ne'er the twain shall meet. But this is in the AoL. Black has taken on a decidedly darker meaning since. :p

Maybe we can somehow include Mat's giving up half the Light to mean that there is compromise as well... the 'Finn are quite nasty, in a way on a path towards the Shadow... Hold it! Maybe the 'Finn are the physical embodiment of a compromise between Light and Shadow - wasn't the outside seen through the windows in the ToG always shown as being darker, maybe closer to twilight?

I'd have to go search that up, though. Maybe that's just how I pictured it, but I'm pretty sure about that last part.

Tomp
04-24-2012, 06:01 PM
But there's also the ancient seal of the Aes Sedai - the white Tear and the blaxk Dragin's Fang. In that instance, black didn't symbolize the Shadow.

Ne'er the twain shall meet. But this is in the AoL. Black has taken on a decidedly darker meaning since. :p

Maybe we can somehow include Mat's giving up half the Light to mean that there is compromise as well... the 'Finn are quite nasty, in a way on a path towards the Shadow... Hold it! Maybe the 'Finn are the physical embodiment of a compromise between Light and Shadow - wasn't the outside seen through the windows in the ToG always shown as being darker, maybe closer to twilight?

I'd have to go search that up, though. Maybe that's just how I pictured it, but I'm pretty sure about that last part.

Darkness and shadow is an absence of light.
You must have light to know that something is black.

Black is not darkness!!!

Khoram
04-24-2012, 06:20 PM
Darkness and shadow is an absence of light.
You must have light to know that something is black.

Black is not darkness!!!

Ah, but the colour black absorbs all light. Ergo, black is darkness. :cool:

Tomp
04-24-2012, 06:32 PM
Ah, but the colour black absorbs all light. Ergo, black is darkness. :cool:

Without light it is impossible to see if something is black.

In darkness you can't see any nuance or colour.

Darkness is not blackness.

Darkness is nothingness.

Blackness is not nothingness.

Black is the opposite of white.

Dark is the opposite of light.

Ergo, Dark is not black.

Khoram
04-24-2012, 06:39 PM
Without light it is impossible to see if something is black.

In darkness you can't see any nuance or colour.

Darkness is not blackness.

Darkness is nothingness.

Blackness is not nothingness.

Black is the opposite of white.

Dark is the opposite of light.

Ergo, Dark is not black.

It's a paradox: to be nothing is to be something. Your are nothing: therefor you are something because of that nothingness.

Darkness is the absence of light, yes.

But theb that would mean that we do not truly understand darkness, because we have never fully experienced it. That is why the colour black is associated with darkness - it is the only thing that we can ohysicakly associate with darkness because of its light-absorbing qualities.

Tomp
04-24-2012, 06:40 PM
There's a difference between entering a dark room and entering a black room.

Khoram
04-24-2012, 06:54 PM
There's a difference between entering a dark room and entering a black room.

When you enter a dark room, does it mean there is no light whatsoever, or just inadequate liighting?

Tomp
04-24-2012, 07:02 PM
When you enter a dark room, does it mean there is no light whatsoever, or just inadequate liighting?

I mean that the dark room has no lighting (lies in shadow) and the black room has black walls, floor and ceiling but has lighting within.

It may have been a bad example

yks 6nnetu hing
04-25-2012, 06:39 AM
beggar-Rand with a blindfold - have not yet seen that IIRC? Can't really count the time he spent on the road in tEoTW and besides, he didn't have the wound back then.


"What about me?" Her grin stopped just short of outright laughter. "The same kind of things as the rest. A sword that isn't a sword, a golden crown of laurel leaves, a beggar's staff, you pouring water on sand, a bloody hand and a white-hot iron, three women standing over a funeral bier with you on it, black rock wet with blood -"


TITLE: Path of Daggers
CHAPTER: Prologue - Deceptive Appearances

Fury boiled suddenly in Moridin's head, and black flecks swam across his eyes as he seized the True Power. Ecstasy that amounted to pain thundered through him. His hand closed around the two mindtraps, and the True Power closed around the Fisher, snatching it into the air, a hair from crushing it to powder, crushing the powder out of existence. The goblet shattered in his hand. His grip bordered on crushing the cour'souvra. The saa were a blizzard of black, but they did not hinder his sight. The Fisher was always worked as a man, a bandage blinding his eyes and one hand pressed to his side, a few drops of blood dripping through his fingers. The reasons, like the source of the name, were lost in the mist of time. That troubled him sometimes, enraged him, what knowledge might be lost in the turnings of the Wheel, knowledge he needed, knowledge he had a right to. A right!

Zombie Sammael
04-25-2012, 06:50 AM
beggar-Rand with a blindfold - have not yet seen that IIRC? Can't really count the time he spent on the road in tEoTW and besides, he didn't have the wound back then.

There's some debate over whether the prophecy was fulfilled or partially fulfilled when the blind man (Rand) stood on his own grave (Dragonmount) and wept. However, that doesn't change its importance as an example of the symbolism, which I think for the purposes we're starting to get at here we have to look at outside of the status of prophecy in the books. I have always been troubled by the blind beggar imagery around Rand; to my mind it hasn't come true appropriately yet.

yks 6nnetu hing
04-25-2012, 07:33 AM
There's some debate over whether the prophecy was fulfilled or partially fulfilled when the blind man (Rand) stood on his own grave (Dragonmount) and wept. However, that doesn't change its importance as an example of the symbolism, which I think for the purposes we're starting to get at here we have to look at outside of the status of prophecy in the books. I have always been troubled by the blind beggar imagery around Rand; to my mind it hasn't come true appropriately yet.

I agree. Mainly because the rest of the events have come true very clearly: Laurel crown = Crown of Swords, Sword that isn't a sword = Callandor, pouring water on sand = (opening the resorvoir at) Rhuidean, bloody hand = duh. IMHO, the only ones not yet clearly fulfilled are the beggar and the white-hot iron.

Though maybe Min didn't know what balefire was to look at and just described white-hot? but she is very specific about the iron... so maybe she knew exactly what she was talking about. When she knows, she knows, after all.

SauceyBlueConfetti
04-25-2012, 11:21 AM
I had an idea many years ago about Darkfriends and losing an eye. There are a bit too many one eyed characters in the books. I was mocked at the time. :rolleyes: Given the 'ol stink eye if I recall.

Found it: One Eyed Folk (http://theoryland.yuku.com/topic/5514/One-Eyed-folk). Ha. Frenzy tried to derail it with Ample Bosom discussions.

Zombie Sammael
04-25-2012, 11:37 AM
I agree. Mainly because the rest of the events have come true very clearly: Laurel crown = Crown of Swords, Sword that isn't a sword = Callandor, pouring water on sand = (opening the resorvoir at) Rhuidean, bloody hand = duh. IMHO, the only ones not yet clearly fulfilled are the beggar and the white-hot iron.

Though maybe Min didn't know what balefire was to look at and just described white-hot? but she is very specific about the iron... so maybe she knew exactly what she was talking about. When she knows, she knows, after all.

I hadn't considered it before, but Felix suggested on Twitter that Rand might lose his other hand. Not the most reliable source, perhaps, but there's an interesting idea there from time to time...

Found it: One Eyed Folk (http://theoryland.yuku.com/topic/5514/One-Eyed-folk). Ha. Frenzy tried to derail it with Ample Bosom discussions.

In any discussion of eyes, there must also be discussion of boobs. This is Zombie's law.

Khoram
04-25-2012, 11:41 AM
I hadn't considered it before, but Felix suggested on Twitter that Rand might lose his other hand. Not the most reliable source, perhaps, but there's an interesting idea there from time to time...



In any discussion of eyes, there must also be discussion of boobs. This is Zombie's law.

What's his reasoning behind this? Is Rand, in actuality, Valan Luca, who is the DR? Say it ain't so! :eek:

Found it: One Eyed Folk (http://theoryland.yuku.com/topic/5514/One-Eyed-folk). Ha. Frenzy tried to derail it with Ample Bosom discussions.

What's wrong with Ample Bosom discussions?

Zombie Sammael
04-25-2012, 11:47 AM
What's his reasoning behind this? Is Rand, in actuality, Valan Luca, who is the DR? Say it ain't so! :eek:



What's wrong with Ample Bosom discussions?

Pretty much the same reasoning Yks posted, that it doesn't seem to have been fulfilled in exactly the right way. Although I think Min had a similar viewing around Elayne? I may be mistaken about this last. I've said it before and I'll say it again: of all WOT fans, Terez and Felix are the two that know the books best; one uses their powers for good, the other for evil, but WHICH IS WHICH????

Khoram
04-25-2012, 12:04 PM
Pretty much the same reasoning Yks posted, that it doesn't seem to have been fulfilled in exactly the right way. Although I think Min had a similar viewing around Elayne? I may be mistaken about this last. I've said it before and I'll say it again: of all WOT fans, Terez and Felix are the two that know the books best; one uses their powers for good, the other for evil, but WHICH IS WHICH????

I'm inclined to think that Felix is the crazier of the two. :p

aleuthard
04-25-2012, 12:21 PM
The Dragon Reborn is a recurring event in the pattern. The blind beggar imagery I always took as referring to the Dragon being reborn in humble surroundings with no knowledge/vision of his past. While it isn't a "happening" like the rest were, it is consistent with Rand's nature and the entire point of The Dragon needing to be reborn to fight The Dark One.

Zombie Sammael
04-25-2012, 12:28 PM
The Dragon Reborn is a recurring event in the pattern. The blind beggar imagery I always took as referring to the Dragon being reborn in humble surroundings with no knowledge/vision of his past. While it isn't a "happening" like the rest were, it is consistent with Rand's nature and the entire point of The Dragon needing to be reborn to fight The Dark One.

I've been working on an... idea that none of the prophecies are general in that way, that all refer to specific events. I was working back through them all to find ones that appeared to only be "generally" fulfilled. There are a couple which are like that which could be ripe for specific fulfilment.

Khoram
04-25-2012, 12:29 PM
It could also be a way of saying that Rand is blind to his path - he doesn't (or didn't, depending on whether you believe this prophecy to have been fulfilled) know what path to take. It can be argued that he has already chosen to go down a certain path, and already knows what he has to do.

Zombie Sammael
04-25-2012, 01:15 PM
It could also be a way of saying that Rand is blind to his path - he doesn't (or didn't, depending on whether you believe this prophecy to have been fulfilled) know what path to take. It can be argued that he has already chosen to go down a certain path, and already knows what he has to do.

There are other prophecies/fourth age writings which indicate he only thinks he knows:

"Master of the lightnings, rider on the storm, wearer of a crown of swords, spinner-out of fate. Who thinks he turns the Wheel of Time, may learn the truth too late."

-From a fragmentary translation of The Prophecies of the Dragon, attributed to Lord Mangore Kiramin, Sword-bard of Aramaelle and Warder to Caraighan Maconar, into what was then called the vulgar tongue (circa 300 AB).

Another example of prophecy to do with eyes/blindness which I'd overlooked is the start note of LOC:

“The lions sing and the hills take flight.
The moon by day, and the sun by night.
Blind woman, deaf man, jackdaw fool.
Let the Lord of Chaos rule.”

-Chant from a children's game heard in Great Aravalon, the Fourth Age

This is a particularly interesting example, as one would expect the blind person in the chant to be a man, if it refers to Rand. Possibly "deaf man" refers to Rand's tendency to be stubborn and not listen to advice, but then who is the blind woman? And the jackdaw fool? All three might refer to Rand, if you accept the idea that he transcends gender boundaries in some respects (such as channelling the One Power).

Khoram
04-25-2012, 04:54 PM
Maybe Egwene's the blind woman and Mat's the jackdaw fool. :/

Zombie Sammael
04-25-2012, 05:01 PM
Maybe Egwene's the blind woman and Mat's the jackdaw fool. :/

I'd thought that as well. Looked at from another direction, it might be that the blind woman, deaf man, and jackdaw fool are letting the lord of chaos rule; Egwene, Perrin, and Mat respectively, perhaps?

Khoram
04-25-2012, 05:36 PM
I'd thought that as well. Looked at from another direction, it might be that the blind woman, deaf man, and jackdaw fool are letting the lord of chaos rule; Egwene, Perrin, and Mat respectively, perhaps?

Or they're supposed to let the Lord of Chaos rule, according to the prophecy. Maybe they'll team up against Rand at the FoM. But Perrin already said he was with Rand, so I don't think that can be it.

Grig
04-25-2012, 05:51 PM
Or they're supposed to let the Lord of Chaos rule, according to the prophecy.

It's not a prophecy, it's a song from a children's game. While there may be elements of truth (such as the one in snakes and foxes), it's not supposed to be a prophecy. It's just poetic rhyming about the turning over of the normal order during the Feast of Fools. "Blind woman, deaf man, jackdaw fool" could just be categories of people that might be voted the Lord of Chaos for the feast.

It's still thematically important for the book, as the references through the book with a similar root to the song hint that the Shadow was under orders to leave Rand alone since he was being a dumbass and screwing everything up for himself, anyway (until there was indication that he was planning on Cleansing the Taint).

Tomp
04-25-2012, 06:13 PM
Could the blind woman and deaf man be linked to Taim?

The blind woman could be Elaida, who can't see what's in front of her.

Deaf man could be Rand who don't listen to all the warnings (internal and external) concerning Taim.

I don't know about the jackdaw fool.

Taim is then the lord of chaos.

Just idle thought.

Zombie Sammael
04-26-2012, 05:43 AM
It's not a prophecy, it's a song from a children's game. While there may be elements of truth (such as the one in snakes and foxes), it's not supposed to be a prophecy. It's just poetic rhyming about the turning over of the normal order during the Feast of Fools. "Blind woman, deaf man, jackdaw fool" could just be categories of people that might be voted the Lord of Chaos for the feast.

It's still thematically important for the book, as the references through the book with a similar root to the song hint that the Shadow was under orders to leave Rand alone since he was being a dumbass and screwing everything up for himself, anyway (until there was indication that he was planning on Cleansing the Taint).

I prefer to assume that everything is there for a reason, especially something as specific as this. As you say, it's not a prophecy, but every one of these end notes was included for a reason. In this particular case I'm interested in it because there's quite an interesting contrast between a "blind woman" and prophecies of Rand's blinding. We already know that eyes and sight have apparently quite heavy significance as symbols of light, so what does a blind woman signify here? Rand isn't a woman, but in a number of ways he does transcend gender boundaries; could it be an oblique reference to him? Or is it a reference to the White Tower or some other female-dominated group, or to a specific character? Just because it's from a children's game doesn't mean these things aren't important. It was included for a reason, and RJ chose to refer to a blind woman - when he could have referred to a blind man and made us all sigh "Rand" again - for a reason. I'm interested in what that reason might be.

GonzoTheGreat
04-26-2012, 05:58 AM
Of course, the blind woman could be Elaida. Or Sevanna. Maybe even Else, though that seems a bit of a stretch.

Maesterbaevern
04-26-2012, 06:17 AM
It's still thematically important for the book, as the references through the book with a similar root to the song hint that the Shadow was under orders to leave Rand alone since he was being a dumbass and screwing everything up for himself, anyway (until there was indication that he was planning on Cleansing the Taint).

Blind lady - WT (Elaida and friends not believing in the BA and underestimating BT)
Deaf man - Perrin (won't listen to Hopper and "embrace" the Wolf)
Jackdaw fool - Mat (denying his war skillz, trying to avoid trouble.)

Lord of Chaos - Mr. al'Thor

This is purely guesswork that feels OK as I was inspired by Grig. Any thoughts?

Grig
04-26-2012, 11:28 AM
As you say, it's not a prophecy, but every one of these end notes was included for a reason.

Yes, and I pointed out the thematic reason for including it. Much the same as the end note for Path of Daggers, or hell, even the most recent Loial information in ToM. It's not prophecy, it's worldbuilding. There might be issues of thematic interest, and it's interesting to speculate there...I promise I won't complain if we just stop calling it a prophecy, since there's no solid ground to assume such.

I do find Maesterbaevern's addition interesting, although I believe at this point there was actually a kill order in place for Perrin and Mat. At least judging by Semi's reaction to Moridin, saying (to the reader, at least) that Mat would have been dead if she had known what he looked like. They were most definitely happy to let Elaida "rule" in the White Tower, with certain guidance of course. And even then, they didn't do anything when a non-Black was put in place as Keeper, figuring Elaida served their purpose well enough.

Zombie Sammael
04-26-2012, 11:45 AM
Yes, and I pointed out the thematic reason for including it. Much the same as the end note for Path of Daggers, or hell, even the most recent Loial information in ToM. It's not prophecy, it's worldbuilding. There might be issues of thematic interest, and it's interesting to speculate there...I promise I won't complain if we just stop calling it a prophecy, since there's no solid ground to assume such.

I do find Maesterbaevern's addition interesting, although I believe at this point there was actually a kill order in place for Perrin and Mat. At least judging by Semi's reaction to Moridin, saying (to the reader, at least) that Mat would have been dead if she had known what he looked like. They were most definitely happy to let Elaida "rule" in the White Tower, with certain guidance of course. And even then, they didn't do anything when a non-Black was put in place as Keeper, figuring Elaida served their purpose well enough.

Sure, and I understand the thematic reasoning as well. But it's my thinking that given the symbolism associated with eyes, light, sight, and blindness, that RJ is giving us some clue by using a "blind woman" i.e. not Rand. I think I actually suggested something similar to Maesterbeavern's idea earlier on in the thread. But as you rightly suggest, "blind woman" needn't refer to any specific individual any more than any other part of the rhyme must. I am inclined to think it is more than just general though; it would be unlike RJ to let something like that slip, as it were. I am very much enamoured of the idea that it refers to the main characters: Egwene the blind woman, Perrin the deaf man, Mat the jackdaw fool, and Rand the Lord of Chaos. There's no particular concern regarding the kill order, as the structure of the rhyme suggests either that they are letting the Lord of Chaos rule or that they ought to do so, not that they also ought to be protected.

Grig
04-26-2012, 12:36 PM
delete

Maesterbaevern
04-26-2012, 02:35 PM
Sure, and I understand the thematic reasoning as well. But it's my thinking that given the symbolism associated with eyes, light, sight, and blindness, that RJ is giving us some clue by using a "blind woman" i.e. not Rand. I think I actually suggested something similar to Maesterbeavern's idea earlier on in the thread. But as you rightly suggest, "blind woman" needn't refer to any specific individual any more than any other part of the rhyme must.

Scanned back and found your first input, did not mean to highjack it!
I do find Egwene plausible in the role as the blind woman as well as Elaida.

yks 6nnetu hing
05-04-2012, 02:56 AM
Came across this last night during my reread:


TITLE: The Gathering Storm
CHAPTER: 35 - A Halo of Blackness

The Last Battle would be between the Empire and the forces of the Dark One. Everybody knew that. The prophecies clearly showed that the Empress would defeat those who served the Shadow, and then she would send the Dragon Reborn in to duel with Lighteater. How much had he fulfilled? He didn't seem blinded yet, so that had yet to happen. The Essanik Cycle said that he would stand on his own grave and weep. Or did that prophecy refer to the dead walking, as they did already? Certainly, some of those spirits had walked across their own graves. The writings were unclear, sometimes. This people seemed to have forgotten many of the prophecies, just as they forgot their oaths to watch for the Return. But she did not say this. Watch your words carefully...


Of course, the Seanchan version of the Prophesies are corrupted by Ishmael but there's no knowing which part is the corruption and which is real.

Grig
05-04-2012, 11:21 AM
yks, as I recall that prophecy appears in full at the end of TGS. In case you wanted to see the actual wording. It's something to the effect of the blind man stands on his own grave and weeps, and was fulfilled during Veins of Gold.

yks 6nnetu hing
05-04-2012, 11:47 AM
yks, as I recall that prophecy appears in full at the end of TGS. In case you wanted to see the actual wording. It's something to the effect of the blind man stands on his own grave and weeps, and was fulfilled during Veins of Gold.lol, thanks! I hadn't gotten to that part in the re-read yet:p

Terez
05-04-2012, 11:49 AM
It's also Essanik, which Brandon has hinted is uncorrupted.

Zombie Sammael
05-04-2012, 11:56 AM
Double-checked the full citation. The one at the end of TGS isn't necessarily the on Tuon was referring to, but both would be from Essanik. I don't have time to write up the full quote right now, but it is the endnote to TGS.

Grig
05-04-2012, 12:22 PM
The one at the end of TGS isn't necessarily the on Tuon was referring to, but both would be from Essanik.

Not sure if serious? What reason do we have to postulate that it's not? She explicitly links the "not blinded yet" and "walking on his own grave".

Besides, on a meta level this fits the Pattern Sanderson also used in ToM, having a plot-relevant prophecy referenced in passing the book as part of the ongoing plot and then providing the full explicit prophecy as the endnote. I'm curious what portion of the Prophecies will get this treatment in AMoL.

Ishara
05-04-2012, 01:16 PM
TITLE: The Gathering Storm
CHAPTER: Epilogue - Bathed in Light
At the end of time, when the many become one, the last storm shall gather its angry winds to destroy a land already dying. And at its center, the blind man shall stand upon his own grave. There he shall see again, and weep for what has been wrought.
—from The Prophecies of the Dragon, Essanik Cycle. Malhavish's Official Translation, Imperial Record House of Seandar, Fourth Circle of Elevation.

Hopefully this saves you some time Zombie.

SauceyBlueConfetti
05-04-2012, 01:39 PM
2009 TGS signing:

Brandon Sanderson
Brandon confirmed that the Wolf Dream/foretelling of Rand as a beggar and the one with bandages over his eyes is fulfilled with his visit to Ebou Dar.
Footnote
Perrin's Wolf Dream with Rand wearing rags and a rough cloak with a bandage over his eyes is from The Shadow Rising 53. The other occurrence is not a Foretelling but rather was one of Min's viewings from The Eye of the World 15, where she saw a beggar's staff.

Not sure how it ties into your ideas, but thought I would share. Argue away ;)

Zombie Sammael
05-04-2012, 05:12 PM
Not sure if serious? What reason do we have to postulate that it's not? She explicitly links the "not blinded yet" and "walking on his own grave".

Besides, on a meta level this fits the Pattern Sanderson also used in ToM, having a plot-relevant prophecy referenced in passing the book as part of the ongoing plot and then providing the full explicit prophecy as the endnote. I'm curious what portion of the Prophecies will get this treatment in AMoL.

Hopefully this saves you some time Zombie.

2009 TGS signing:



Not sure how it ties into your ideas, but thought I would share. Argue away ;)

Thanks for that Ishara.

I hadn't realised Brandon had confirmed that the blind/beggar prophecy had been fulfilled, hence my comments about the Essanik one. It seemed to me that there was a difference between a prophecy that said the DR would be blinded and one which said a blind man would do something. That might be overly literal; after all, if you knew the identity of the blind man was the DR it'd be reasonable enough to assume (as everyone did) that at some point he'd have to be blinded, but evidently even that is an overly literal interpretation of the prophecy! I figured there could be a second prophecy which said explicitly that the DR would be blinded prior to him standing on his own grave and weeping. But since that prophecy has been fulfilled, further speculation actually seems pointless, somewhat disappointingly given our earlier speculations.

SauceyBlueConfetti
05-08-2012, 01:41 PM
I was just talking to a coworker about dogs and how they see in a different light spectrum. It got me thinking about Perrin and the Wolfbrothers, as well as Hopper, etc. Perrin is able to see things well in advance of others, his sight is commented on repeatedly in the books especially after his eyes turn Golden. This is again, an Eye storyline, the idea he can see things so clearly that others cannot. Of course he is also dense so he cannot see the true motives of Berelain, or even his sneaky sneaky wife. But that may just be a man thing. :rolleyes:

Tomp
05-10-2012, 05:38 AM
In the interview Q/A on the Whelan cover. http://www.theoryland.com/intvmain.php?i=766
There is a point at no 4 (7 MAY 2012) with some eye interest.


Compositionally, the line of the sword is another element that draws you into the intensity of Rand's stare. Further, the opening of the cave is the shape of an eye; the eclipse suggests an iris. It's as if the gaze of the Dark One is falling on Rand. We see his strength and determination in response. How many illustrators can convey that kind of depth in a scene?