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transgender


Durinax
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If a person changed their sex they would probably still channel the same Power as their original sex dictated. So if a man becomes a woman she would channel Saidin. If a woman becomes a man he would channel Saidar. There would be no reason for them to channel the True Power unless they became dreadlords and were allowed to by the Dark One. Balthamel becoming Aran'gar doesn't quite count, since they're two seperate bodies, but I think the principal is the same.

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There is an hysterical quote somewhere from when someone asked RJ what power an hermaphrodite would channel. RJ's response was a wierd look and telling the person to get a life, or something.

 

Pretty much though it'd probably be a chromosonal thing--if your chromosones say your a boy, you touch saidin.

 

Aran'gar is, of course, unique.

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That is an interesting question.  If you have a hermaphroditic person with Klinefelter's syndrome or something, what would they end up channelling?  They've got the two X chromosones, so they're female and would use saidar, but they've also got the XY pairing, so they're male and would use saidan.

 

Maybe they could use both and link with themselves.

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The simple answer is that they probably wouldn't channel. And if they did they would more than probably die.

 

I don't see why they'd die.  When Rand was linked with Nynaeve at Shadar Logoth, he channelled saidar well enough and specifically used it for things as opposed to using saidan and needed to surrender to it the same way that Aes Sedai do in order to use it.  I'm pretty sure that some of the Aes Sedai who've bonded Asha'men have channelled saidan through the link, although I can't remember a specific reference.  So there's nothing that inherently stops one gender from using the other's power beyond their not having the ability.

 

If someone had both male and female chromosomes and had the ability to channel, I really don't see why they wouldn't be able to use both.

 

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That's with a basis in one--having learnt to fight saidin/submit to saidar one may put themselves to the dual process, but it's made clear that learning to channel saidin or saidar is difficult enough as it is, without trying to submit and conquer at the same time.

 

Perhaps with really, really careful training--but frankly I reckon were this to happen they'd simply fail to learn the necessary control of the Power, and die.

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That's with a basis in one--having learnt to fight saidin/submit to saidar one may put themselves to the dual process, but it's made clear that learning to channel saidin or saidar is difficult enough as it is, without trying to submit and conquer at the same time.

 

Perhaps with really, really careful training--but frankly I reckon were this to happen they'd simply fail to learn the necessary control of the Power, and die.

 

It would be hard, but it could be done.  Anytime someone links the two, they need to submit and conquer at the same time, so it's a skill that can be learned.  They'd just need one teacher of each to work with them instead of a single one and having someone able to access both powers simulataneously would be enough of an asset it make it worth the investment.  There's no need to assume automatic death anymore than there would be to assume that because learning to drive a car and a motorcycle are both hard, any teenager who tries to learn both will inevitably crash and die.

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By the time you reach the point where you're splitting hairs over transmigration and transexuals channeling some fantasy power I think you have pretty much travelled into a wormhole of some fairly disturbing erotic fanfiction shit.

 

Not really.  If you have a power that works differently in males and females, then one can have a legitimate discussion of how it would work with transgendered people who are both (or neither, depending on your definitions) without it degrading into porn.

 

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Personally, the likelyhood of a channeling hermaphrodite is PRETTY unlikely but if it were to happen, well.

 

I believe it is more of a "Soul" thing. It is a connection that is formed spiritually rather than physically. Notice how the ex-male forsaken is now in a females body and yet still channels saidin. His soul, in itself, is still male. He thinks like one and still tries to act like one (Mat says something about "Delima" being a good enough dancer but tries to lead instead of follow). So while something physical in a hermaphrodite is affected, on a soul level he will have either one or the other.

 

 

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That's a good point.  Are people's souls gendered, though?  Can someone be a guy in one life and a girl in another?  What about transgendered people who feel they've been born into the wrong body?  That a bug in the resurrection program and they got put in the wrong place or are they doomed to go throughout eternity never to have a body they feel comfortable with?

 

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Linking is different than touching whatever half. As probably mentioned, men and women who can channel will die if they come in contact with the a'dam, as each person is touching the half of the source that they can not touch. So I'd imagine that anyone born transgendered either could not channel, will die if they touch one or both halves of the source, or will be able to touch one half safely, but not the other.

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That's a good point.  Are people's souls gendered, though?  Can someone be a guy in one life and a girl in another?  What about transgendered people who feel they've been born into the wrong body?  That a bug in the resurrection program and they got put in the wrong place or are they doomed to go throughout eternity never to have a body they feel comfortable with?

 

Exactly what I was thinking. In our world we have people who truly feel that they are a male born into a female body (or female in a male body). So, it can be assumed that their soul is of the gender that they feel it is, not what's showing on the outside. (though a lot of it depends on personal beliefs of souls and stuff) Then it depends on if the use of the OP is connected to a person's soul or their physical being. Since we know that soul resurrection is possible in Randland, it's a plausible theory. Unless RJ has specifically stated that it can't happen that way, since it is his world.  Personally, I think transgendered or hermaphrodite channelers could be for some interesting plot lines.

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I think in RJ's construction, channeling and its link is connected with the Soul, not the body, per se.  We havn't been given anything that hints that a soul is ever both genders or gender-less.  All the souls we have seen that can be reborn always seem to be of one type of gender: the Dragon, Birgitte, other Heroes of the Horn.

 

So, I have  a feeling, for his universe, its connected with the soul and the soul is either of Saidar or Saidin.

 

So, a hermaphrodite would channel one or the other, depending on its soul's gender, regardless of physical gender.  Like we have seen with the transmigration issue.

 

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