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Did Aes Sedai commit heinous crimes before the Dark One was freed?


John
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Something I've noticed that seems interesting, is that crimes did happen in the Age of Legends. Prisoners were bound as a result. Its a quote from Book Six or Five (I believe Lord of Chaos but I'm not 100% sure) when Sammael asks if the rulers of Shara also bound themselves like criminals? I never understood the quote until now. He wasn't talking about physical bindings, he was talking about being bound by an Oath Rod.

 

The reason I believe this is because one of the Forsaken (the one who was torturing the Aes Sedai and her warder. Mesaana I believe) thought on how she liked to take people to the brink of death before healing them. And how she was denied this by the Aes Sedai council and was going to be be bound and forever denied her pleasures. The only thing that could do this is an Oath Rod. Her fleeing this punishment is what led to her joining the Dark One.

 

The above I believe is a sign that Aes Sedai never commited heinous crimes before Mesaana (and quite possibly Mesaana only did it after the Dark One was freed. I'm unsure). If Aes Sedai had ever been bound by the Oath Rod, s/he would have aged extremely faster then normal and the aging side-effect the Oath Rod has on women would have been discovered. This would have led to the White Tower knowing about this side-effect IMO.

 

Its possible the Oath Rod they the White Tower uses is simply flawed. But I think if this were the case, it would have been destroyed. What do others think?

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The Oath Rod is a binder, used to bind criminals. Semirhage was a sadist, and when this was discovered she was offered the choice of severing or being bound. She ran off to join the Shadow instead. An Oath Rod diminishes the lifespan of someone bound on it. AS live up to 300 years. There are Kinswomen older than that, and damane, possibly Wise Ones and Windfinders as well. The effect a binder has on lifespan was well known in the AoL. Semi noted such when she thought of the choice she was offered. Much knowledge was lost in the Breaking. People did commit "heinous" crimes in the AoL, and the OR could only be used on chaneling women. Semi was not the first, not by a long way. All this is common knowledge.

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Sure there was crimes, few but some.  All boring into the DO's prison did was it magnified those feelings such as greed, hate, jealousy.  Causing more and more to act on those feelings.

 

With Semi how much of her actions was commited before the bore was drilled or after?  She might of been one who enjoyed causing some suffering but once he could touch the world maybe it also increased how much she enjoyed it.  She probably started increasing the pain she inflicted on those she healed till she couldn't hide what she was doing any longer.

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The society of the Age of Legends was very different than the one we live in, and even the Age Rand lives in.  In the Age of Legends, status was given to those who contributed to society in positive manners, so the idea of greed and power were not unknown, but they weren't amplified in such a way that people committed great crimes for them.

 

We see that Mieren (Lanfear) had a lust for power as she enjoyed her relationship with Lews Therin (who was the best of the best) far more than she enjoyed the man himself. 

 

We see that Mesaana was terribly upset that she was not given the position of a Researcher because the council deemed her "unfit to research" but gave her the lesser position of a teacher, which basically paved the way for her to go over to the Dark One.  Remember at the time "the Dark One" wasn't really even a concept just as "war" wasn't a concept for these people.  Most people didn't even know what war was, it was something akin to a myth.

 

Semirhage was a sadist, so probably on a small scale there were definitely moments in the Age of Legends where people gave in to the baser side of their own humanity, and there was great arrogance as some believed that in the Age of Legends everything that could be learned had already been learned.  So crime was probably not unheard of, though I think that it was very few and far between as most people were striving to make a name for themselves by doing what they felt would best promote their society and the people around them.

 

I think crimes were probably known, but "heinous" crimes were probably very rare.

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