Author Topic: szeth and the shin  (Read 3605 times)

guy

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szeth and the shin
« on: September 14, 2010, 08:28:56 PM »
I think the shin were the original people of roshar, and were left unchanged by cultivation, and they seem to have developed a culture that is the opposite of what the alethi have, perhaps so they would not care if people try and see the future, but maybe they have problems with the past and szeth was a historian of some kind so he guessed that the voidbringers were never defeated, and so the shin made him into a killer, someone who would be like the lowest of the low as a punishment, which would explain why szeth said his punishment demanded the voidbringers werent real, but his honor demanded that they were

SnagglezMaw

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2010, 09:35:37 PM »
I think the shin were the original people of roshar, and were left unchanged by cultivation, and they seem to have developed a culture that is the opposite of what the alethi have, perhaps so they would not care if people try and see the future, but maybe they have problems with the past and szeth was a historian of some kind so he guessed that the voidbringers were never defeated, and so the shin made him into a killer, someone who would be like the lowest of the low as a punishment, which would explain why szeth said his punishment demanded the voidbringers werent real, but his honor demanded that they were

Do you think, maybe, that this is where his label "Truthless" came from? I'm still confused as to why everyone calls him that, I was assuming something to do with the Shardblade but I was just taking a stab in the dark.

Ari54

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2010, 05:13:36 AM »
I think that while perhaps the Voidbringers were the reason that Szeth did something to be punished, they may not be the heart of the infraction as far as the Shin were concerned- so maybe he ended up contradicting something else because of his beliefs about the Voidbringers.

guy

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2010, 05:45:51 PM »
i think that whatever it was he did to become truthless definately involved the voidbringers, and szeth seemed to view the shardblade as more of a punishment than anything else.
also why do you think he goes by his grandfathers name rather than hs fathers, i know he said
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"do not call me by my fathers name, he should not be sullied by association with me."

Grogg

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2010, 06:13:45 PM »
Wild speculation, but perhaps his sin was seeking out and learning to Surgebind.  It may also be that his Grandfather was a Surgebinder and Truthless, and Szeth sought him out to learn.

It even seems plausible that the Shin Stone Shamans recognized the threat of the oncoming Desolation (from death-prophesies or otherwise), asked Szeth to learn/take it upon himself to learn the ability to Surgebind, becoming Truthless in the course of that learning, and then gave him the Shardblade as a tool of his Truthlessness.

One reason I think his Truthlessness is not just a curse, but actually something granted him/encouraged upon him is the story of the king that sailed to the far off island.  The island where the people would slaughter someone for a mistake, but when it turned out their emperor was dead they went mad with guilt.  It would seem that being Truthless allows Szeth (or more accurately Szeth's masters) to commit the sins he does without the normal consequences in Shin culture.  In a sense, Szeth's Truthlessness is the emperor up in the tower.  The real thing I am looking forward to is when Szeth finally casts off his Truthlessness and begins to follow the morality he clearly wishes he had the freedom to follow.

guy

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2010, 06:25:43 PM »
it seems like the shin dont believe in the voidbringers because 
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But, then, did they even exist? His punishment demanded they didnt. His honor demanded that they did.

Munin

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2010, 07:35:37 PM »
it seems like the shin dont believe in the voidbringers because 
Quote
But, then, did they even exist? His punishment demanded they didnt. His honor demanded that they did.
Or they think that the Voidbringers don't exist anymore.

But yeah, the alternative is more likely.
There's a difference between what's best and what's right. What's best might be different tomorrow or the day after, but right and wrong will stay the same after a thousand years.

jacobfake

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2010, 06:12:00 AM »
i'm pretty sure the truthlessness was in fact a punishment (vs grogg) because of the interlude with the merchant meeting the shin, which referenced them having traded szeth to him originally and refused to take payment (threw it in the river). It still doesn't seem to make sense what purpose the Shin hoped to accomplish with his punishment. Why would they just give him away like that? Why not exile him without making him a servant, didn't they realize the terrible things his masters might command of him? how is it that they label him a criminal but yet expect his honor to keep him sticking to his oathstone?

besides being a "liar," (as i imagine it, preaching that another desolation was coming, made truthless for blasphemy) truthless might also refer to his strangely missing spren or giving away truths to get into shadesmar.

One crazy thing would be- what if he was declared truthless for saying the voidbringers were coming like above ^^ but when he goes to the shattered plains he finally meets the parshendi and recognizes them as proof that he was right? (or sees a chasmfiend=proof?, regardless that would be another crazy fun horrible moral crisis for him) Could he have originally accepted his truthlessness so that he would be able to walk on stone and leave his homeland specifically to find the voidbringers?

hubay

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2010, 06:42:38 AM »
I don't think walking on stone is part of his truthless-ness – actually it's only because he's truthless that he can bear to commit this sin. I'm pretty sure its taboo for all of Shin, part of Stone Shamanism – which is probably a result of their having the only real 'soil' in roshar.

Has anyone thought that a refusal to take payment might have actually meant he was priceless? I'm thinking of the bartering style where everyone under-prices their own goods. It's probably not likely, since being truthless is always referred to as a punishment, but that could just be Szeth's way of thinking about it – the fact that he has to kill constantly is a terrible punishment for him, but that wasn't actually the intent behind his oath.

jacobfake

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2010, 06:53:33 AM »
yeah that's what I mean. Walking on stone is taboo for Shin, so his honor would never have allowed him to do it. By becoming truthless, however, his sense of honor forced him to walk on stone to carry out his punishment. Thus, by becoming truthless he was able to leave his homeland and possibly encounter further evidence of the voidbringers.

hubay

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2010, 07:04:29 AM »
Ah, got it now. I don't know, though. His POV's don't seem to suggest a sort of quest, but it's possible that his plan has failed miserably, since now he's at a master's beck and call, and he doesn't bother thinking about it anymore.

guy

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2010, 08:21:34 PM »
if he was supposed to have some sort of quest to achive, then why does he have an oathstone?  it seems fairly counterproductive to have

jacobfake

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2010, 11:39:41 PM »
well i was thinking of it like a lesser of two evils thing "I can stay here and do 0% of anything," or "I can get an oathstone and maybe at least manage 1% of something" however, I do admit that it sounds like a poorly thought out plan for someone with an oathstone and surgebinding, but really I just want to try and get at least some explanations out there for "his punishment demanded that they didn't, his honor demanded that they did" because this line just feels incredibly key and the more ideas people throw out there the more likely we are to get another step closer to figuring it out. Kind of like a 0% versus 1% thing of my own.

Ari54

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Re: szeth and the shin
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2010, 06:01:34 AM »
One reason I think his Truthlessness is not just a curse, but actually something granted him/encouraged upon him is the story of the king that sailed to the far off island.  The island where the people would slaughter someone for a mistake, but when it turned out their emperor was dead they went mad with guilt.  It would seem that being Truthless allows Szeth (or more accurately Szeth's masters) to commit the sins he does without the normal consequences in Shin culture.  In a sense, Szeth's Truthlessness is the emperor up in the tower.  The real thing I am looking forward to is when Szeth finally casts off his Truthlessness and begins to follow the morality he clearly wishes he had the freedom to follow.

There are definitely some bits of monologue that skirted at the edges of this idea, so that could be foreshadowing a conflict to come when we get to the book that focuses on Szeth.

I don't think walking on stone is part of his truthless-ness – actually it's only because he's truthless that he can bear to commit this sin. I'm pretty sure its taboo for all of Shin, part of Stone Shamanism – which is probably a result of their having the only real 'soil' in roshar.

Has anyone thought that a refusal to take payment might have actually meant he was priceless? I'm thinking of the bartering style where everyone under-prices their own goods. It's probably not likely, since being truthless is always referred to as a punishment, but that could just be Szeth's way of thinking about it – the fact that he has to kill constantly is a terrible punishment for him, but that wasn't actually the intent behind his oath.

I think it's probably more the concept that he's worthless or even harmful to own, being Truthless.