Hey Janny! A question:
After re-reading Peril's Gate, several scenes within Arithon's trial were very reminescent (sp?)of aspects of Homer's Odyssey. For example: his encounter with the shades of the dead or the illusion of said shades, his innovative, clever and creative solutions to problems, and the longing to be reunited withe Elaira (Penelope), meeting a dead parent in the underworld, etc. . .
I suppose I was just wondering whether you were thinking of Odysseus at any moment in the planning of the story. I may be way off target, but I still thought the (perceived) allusion was very cool.
Hi Elydee -
You Asked - I loved the Odyssey as a child - to me, it is "true epic" in that - the main character's choices and encounters reflect the fabric of the whole society he lived in - and he "broke" every rule of honor he had, as a human, while defining the meaning and staying true to the principle behind it. Not like the classic tale of "good vs evil" but more a definition is why is "good" a state of being worth striving for, again and again.
Arithon's trials in Kewar were not (consciously) any sort of parallel, although I too, aspire to write a "true epic"
To me, his re encounter with his past choices was all about seeing him match his triumphs and his failures with his OWN sense of his self worth. Where he failed to live up to what he believed he "should be" - where he had thought he had, but was self blinded - the maze laid all bare.
Triumph in the maze IS whether the individual has the character to accept the full range of themselves - their strengths on equal footing with their failures. It is about holding self-value in the face of being human - and it is about being strong enough to change vantage.
If you see the Odyssey as Odysseus' trials of character, on the field and on his way home to his wife - about his failures that also forged his strengths - then the two stories would in fact run parallel.
Failure in the maze is about denial or acceptance of self. The strong character acknowledges honest (and dishonest!) failures, and learns self forgiveness.
To me, I think that is the hardest course of learning, in being human....if we cannot assess, judge, and finally forgive and change, we certainly cannot handle doing that, with regard to others.
Picking at little details...awaiting SF...
I reread the end of kewer yesterday. Davien is reviewing the outcome and there is a comment about how Luhaine would be angry(?) concerning a reference to the kewer design/intent and Davien appears to have seen a flaw in his maze?
"let in the snake or something like that?"
More and more I'm seeing sentences in these books that make no sense to me...when first reading I think my mind glosses over these sentences that don't seem to mean anything in my haste to get to the end...and I move on without analysing...I could be just missing something simple here though...but just thought I'd mention it
That is something that always begs me to re-read, Neil, so you're not alone.
I'll see these "nonsensical" sentences that seemingly have no connection to what I am currently reading. I'll re-read and come to one of two conclusions:
1. Janny is throwing a curve ball about past or future events, and I just stepped into its path
2. This might be an editing mistake that no one caught.
There are lots of sentences in this series that make my brain hurt.. in some ways trying to work this is out is like putting together a 1000 piece jigsaw, but we've only been given 1/4 of the pieces and won't get more until subsequent books come out.
[Grin] That's a VERY Christian concept, Janny, even if your personal beliefs don't run that way. At the core of Christianity are the two commandments, to love God, and to love your neighbour AS YOURSELF. And, as a very wise Christian teacher pointed out to me many years ago, it's impossible to really love your neighbour if you DON'T love yourself.
How important are these commandments? As Jesus said, "On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."
Hi Janny, all,
one of my favourite quotes reads
"to know everything is to forgive everything"
i have never looked upon it as an egotistical phrase, more from the point of, who am i to judge anothers actions, what experiences have shaped that individual, family, country, and as a collective consequence, mankind. i believe 'life' is a learning ground and ALL states of being (good,compassionate,noble,evil,cruel,selfish,etc) should be reflected upon, and used as important tools in the developement of our soul/mind...
p.s i also believe it is far easier to be 'good' and have a clear conscience than to be 'bad' and have to carry around all the associated baggage!!
Bumping a very old thread!
I'm on my re-read of PG prior to starting IT (wheee!) in Kewar, I noticed this time, no mention at all is made of any of Arithon's struggles with the Korianthi. None of the deaths he wrought escaping from Jealot, nor (other than Caolle) from the plot with the fetches.
Is this deliberate, or oversight? Given Lirenda's fate, surely Arithon should have felt guilt over his part in her downfall? Or because the K stem from Outside, are their actions not within Davien/Kewar's remit?
Reading fox - I'm not at all sure why Arithon should feel any guilt about the Koriani. He was, after all, trying to save Lirenda. He wouldn't see what happened to her as a 'downfall' and neither do I. And the Koriani do not live by the Law of the Major Balance and have endlessly tried to force him into various actions.
Why should Arithon have felt guilty that Lirenda's actions got her demoted, or that she failed to capture him in Jaelot? Kewar was weighting Arithons current unresolved feelings of guilt, not something it might take him centuries to find out about, and which had not yet occurred. Lirenda's own choices resulted in her downfall, Arithon might be enraged (at some point way in the future) over the injustice and cruelty of Lirenda's fate, but could even his over active conscience hold him responsible for what eventually happened to Lirenda? We will probably find out in Destiny's Conflict, but no way could he have felt guilty about it in Kewar.
Not even Arithon's over active conscience is going hold him responsible for all the actions of the Koriathain. Arithon relived the scene where he interrupted Morriel and Lirenda's spying on the events at Ithamon, he had unresolved feelings of guilt over what happened as a result of that. He must have got over the kiss, and Lirenda was hardly unwilling, so it was not even a stolen kiss. Her actions put him in that situation, so perhaps he had already resolved any feelings of guilt over it. Lirenda's crystal was sent back to help heal Lirenda, it was not Arithon's actions that prevented that working.
The deaths in Jaelot were all caused either by sword or mishap, and they all made the choice to attack in the first place. Arithon never robbed them of their free will, so perhaps while he felt bad at the time for having to kill them, he came to terms with it.
What deaths from Riverton other than Caolle's should Arithon feel guilty about? That was the only death I see him as being responsible for. The only other death's I remember were the clansmen, he might have felt some guilt over that when he heard about it, but he seems to have resolved it by Kewar. After Riverton it was Sulfin Evend's own rash actions that got his guardsmen killed, Arithon never forced them to enter the Grimward. The only plot of Arithon's involving fetches he certainly felt guilty over and got to relive all the deaths he felt responsible for. Arithon cannot feel guilty for every harmful thing done by the Koriathain or Lysaer, he is not their conscience. Also he would not know what they were up to most of the time anyway.
Arithon's compassion is all embrassing. Whether or not he 'caused' deaths is not relevant, if they died associated with his actions then I expected Kewar to bring it to his attention - from the branches and animals, to the mothers and children bereft - whether clansman or townsman. I had expected that such unexpect consequences as Lirenda's fate would also be experienced.
But maybe it is only the things he already felt guilty for that were relived. Someone who felt no remorse despite any despicable actions could walk through Kewar unmarked? That wasn't how I understood Kewar to function.
Arithon's compassion might be all embracing, but Kewar was weighing conscience, not compassion or empathy. Arithon knew nothing about Lirenda's fate, so he felt no guilt about it, she was just fine when he left her in Jaelot, and no action or decision of his would have caused her harm. Lirenda had sworn no fealty to Arithon, she owed him no loyalty, she is not one of his subjects so her punishment cannot entangle his crown oath or his responsibilities to Rathain.
And even if a person was blind to their mistakes, Kewar would still unveil them. Lysaer would never make it through kewar, even though he felt no guilt for his actions.
Also, I got the impression that in Kewar he suffered for the things for which he actually did bear some responsibility.
Why do you think he bears responsibility for Lirenda's fate? I'm not sure I understand your reasoning.