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Aviendha's Vision


navahgar
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Based on my perusal of these message boards, it seems as if most people think that the future Aviendha sees in Rhuidean is a bad one that needs to be prevented. I'm not sure it is. Although it is clear that the Aiel drift into insignificance, what about the rest of the future. Based on the glimpses we see of the furthest future, it appears that technology has advanced significantly, including guns, cars and electric lights. Aviendha, presumably, sees the future through the lens of her descendants, but if the world at large is positive, then what's wrong with her people dying out. I can understand why Aviendha would want to prevent this, but not why we should be on her side.

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Based on my perusal of these message boards, it seems as if most people think that the future Aviendha sees in Rhuidean is a bad one that needs to be prevented. I'm not sure it is. Although it is clear that the Aiel drift into insignificance, what about the rest of the future. Based on the glimpses we see of the furthest future, it appears that technology has advanced significantly, including guns, cars and electric lights. Aviendha, presumably, sees the future through the lens of her descendants, but if the world at large is positive, then what's wrong with her people dying out. I can understand why Aviendha would want to prevent this, but not why we should be on her side.

I think the problem is that the Seanchan seem to have control over just about everything/everyone. They didn't unite as they should've. Also, it's sad when any people die out, no matter how great or small. But, I suppose you're right to a degree. Civilizations DO die out all the time, why does it have to be negative that the Aiel die out? Would it have less impact if we found out that the Sea Folk will die out? Probably.

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Based on my perusal of these message boards, it seems as if most people think that the future Aviendha sees in Rhuidean is a bad one that needs to be prevented. I'm not sure it is. Although it is clear that the Aiel drift into insignificance, what about the rest of the future. Based on the glimpses we see of the furthest future, it appears that technology has advanced significantly, including guns, cars and electric lights. Aviendha, presumably, sees the future through the lens of her descendants, but if the world at large is positive, then what's wrong with her people dying out. I can understand why Aviendha would want to prevent this, but not why we should be on her side.

 

Why can't we hope for a future with both the advancements seen in the vision and a place for the Aiel as a people. They don't have to be mutually exclusive.

 

Plus, I'm not really cool with a future where the Seanchan don't change their ways regarding the damane and da'covale.

Edited by Mark Grayson
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Why can't we hope for a future with both the advancements seen in the vision and a place for the Aiel as a people. They don't have to be mutually exclusive.

 

I agree, but in fairness the Aiel seem to have done it to themselves. We already know that only a 'remnant of a remnant' of the Aiel will survive, but frankly I've never really understood what that meant. This is a tangent, but where did that 'prophecy' come from? We don't see it in Rand's firsthand experience in Rhuidean, so where do the Wise Ones get it from? Anyway, I don't see how there could be a place for the Aiel as a people unless they changed dramatically.

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Why can't we hope for a future with both the advancements seen in the vision and a place for the Aiel as a people. They don't have to be mutually exclusive.

 

I agree, but in fairness the Aiel seem to have done it to themselves. We already know that only a 'remnant of a remnant' of the Aiel will survive, but frankly I've never really understood what that meant. This is a tangent, but where did that 'prophecy' come from? We don't see it in Rand's firsthand experience in Rhuidean, so where do the Wise Ones get it from? Anyway, I don't see how there could be a place for the Aiel as a people unless they changed dramatically.

 

I've always assumed that the prophecy came from the same Aes Sedai that had the Jenn Aiel set up Rhuidean. There seemed to be at least one of those Aes Sedai with the Foretelling.

 

As to needing to "dramatically" change. I've seen others argue this also (usually saying they should go back to following the Way and being da'shain Aiel again) and I just completely disagree.

 

First, if they decide to all go back to the Waste and isolate themselves from the rest of Randland like they did previously, they should be able to carry on business as usual. Fight amongst themselves. Ignore other people. The Waste isn't such a desirable location that others (even the Seanchan) shouldn't be willing to leave them alone.

 

Second, if some of them decide to stay in the Wetlands then, yes, a change in attitude will be necessary. They should not be allowed to attack whoever they want for whatever they want. They will have to moderate their aggression to live amongst others. Notice I say moderate and not radically change. They have already co-existed in the wetlands for almost two years. Yes, this is under Rand's guidance and his orders to be more peaceful. But it hasn't required a radical change in their culture and it shouldn't going forward.

 

As to going back to the Way of the Leaf? God, I hope such a pathetic fate is not what happens to my favorite people in the series. The Way is ridiculous and is only good as an ideal and not as a functional belief in the real world. People should be willing and capable of defending themselves and their loved ones. Plus, there will always be room in the world for a warrior culture because there will never be long term peace in a world occupied by man.

 

Someone in the thread How to Prevent Avi's Vision of the Future (or some title similar to that) argued that the Aiel's biggest strength and weakness is their determination and dedication to whatever they do. Whether its peace (the Da'shain Aiel) or war (the current Aiel). And the Aiel's real problem in the future is that they feel like they don't have a purpose. So they foolishly just stick with their dedication to nothing but war. He suggests that this dedication should be put to more practical use. Namely, using the new wonders that will surely develop now that men and all the women channeling groups will be working together to revitalize the Waste and make it a great land again. Its one of the later posts in that thread and pretty cool. Check it out.

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The Karaethon Cycle

TDR,Ch6

He shall slay his people with the sword of peace, and destroy them with the leaf.

The sword of peace is probably Justice.

In the conversation between Solinda Sedai and Jonai you can learn how 10.000 Dai'Shain Aiel were destroyed with the leave. (TSR, Ch. 26)

 

The Aiel Prophecies

TGH,Ch28

One of the old prophecies says that if ever we fail the Aes Sedai again, they will slay us.

The Aiel failed the Aes Sedai when they abandondend the Convenant. They will fail them again if they don't return to the Way of Leave.

 

TSR,Ch25

He will take you back, and he will destroy you.

Will he take them back to the Way of Leave? Will they be destroyed in the same way as they were near Tzora.

 

TSR,Ch34

He shall spill out the blood of those who call themselves Aiel as water on sand, and he shall break them as dried twigs, yet the remnant of a remnant shall he save, and they shall live.

In Aviendha's visions all clans has survived the Last Battle. That surely isn't a remnant of a remnant. During the visions we saw the complete extinction of the Aiel. In her vision the Aiel didn't live at the end; so they have failed the AS again.

 

So I think the Aiel will have to return to way of leave and meet their toh. While doing so they will destroyed. Rand will only (be able to) save a remnant of a remnant.

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the Aiel seem to have done it to themselves.
This is the heart of it. Aviendha sees her people dying, that's one thing. But she also sees her grandchildren and the people around losing their way, losing their honor by starting this war and causing their own demise. Being a former Maiden, I don't thing she's all that much afraid of her people dying. She surely doesn't want it to happen that way but if this their fate then she would accept it as long as it is honorable.

What she sees instead is Aiel losing their honor. THAT is something she will die trying to prevent, and in THAT I agree with her.

Edited by Aquarius
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The Karaethon Cycle

TDR,Ch6

He shall slay his people with the sword of peace, and destroy them with the leaf.

The sword of peace is probably Justice.

 

The sword of peace was just a metaphor. It was a reference to how the knowledge that they had once been peaceful pacifists and how they had abandoned their ways had broken many of the Aiel, bringing on the bleakness. What role would Justice play? He's not actually going to kill any Aiel with it.

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Saw this in another thread about Avi's vision and thought I would post here to consolidate the threads a little. I think this is a pretty cool idea:

 

I've been thinking in what way the Aiel could change which would allow them to prosper in the future and I think I've come up with something which suits their past and their present. Aiel means Dedicated and that description fits them perfectly. In the AoL they were dedicated to peace and became the ultimate pacifists, after the breaking they dedicated themselves to the arts of war and became the deadliest people in the world. Even the Tuatha'an share that trait. Their dedication to their way of life is as strong as that of their ancestors and their cousins. That dedication is their greatest strength, but it is also the cause for their downfall in the future.

 

At the root of the doom Aviendha saw for her people is that the Aiel were left aimless after the last battle. They lacked a higher purpose, an ideal they could strive for. We were told that by Ronam. The obvious solution is that they need for Rand or rather for Aviendha to provide that new purpose. Once they have that they'll center their way of life around it and prosper.

So the question is, what could be that new purpose?

 

It won't be the Way of the Leaf. The Aiel aren't ready for that yet, the wheel will have to turn a few ages before they can once more follow that path. However, it shouldn't be forgotten that the ones who set the Aiel on their current path were the Jenn and Aes Sedai with their prophecies. They knew that the only way the Aiel could survive was through war, but they wouldn't want them to remain warlike after the need for it had passed. They felt sorrow for the Aiel who had lost their old ways and would want them to find them again.

Aiel and the other peoples do not mix well, individually perhaps, but as a people the Aiel remain mostly apart. That's been the case since the AoL and if Aviendha's viewing is any measure it'll be the case in the future as well. That's why I think that putting the Aiel as they are right now in the Westlands is a guarantee for disaster. There is no place in the Westlands where the Aiel can settle as a people without opposition. If not the Seanchan they would come to odds with some other nation. Yet, if they stay in the Waste and continue as they did they'll also doom themselves and like Nakomi said why would they remain in such a hostile environment when the need for it had passed?

 

My answer to that is perhaps the Aiel haven't yet discovered the true purpose why the Jenn put them into the Waste. The Aiel call the Waste the Three-fold Land. A punishment for their sins, a place to test their courage and an anvil to shape them. What if there's a fourth role the Waste will yet play? What if the reward for their service is also hidden there?

Afterall why would the Jenn build a city like Rhuidean in such a carefully chosen location if they didn't want the Aiel to live there for a long time? Rand said there was an ocean of water hidden under Rhuidean. Depending on how large that ocean is and whether there are other such deposits could the Waste not be transformed from an inhospitable desert into a lush paradise over time? Especially if one thinks how the Aiel and the Ogier sang together to grow crops in the AoL. If that ability is still latent among them couldn't it be used again? Also with Egwene's exchange program soon Aiel will learn about the weather weaves of the Seafolk and with those at their disposal they would have all the tools they need to accomplish such a transformation.

 

The Aiel dedicating themselves to geoengineering the Waste and healing all those scars the DO left on the rest of the land, like the Blight would be a fitting purpose and one which the Jenn would approve of. And it would only be fair that after over two thousand years in the harshest place on earth that harshest place turned out to be the richest one of all. Besides such a daunting project should keep the Aiel strong and in the present instead of diminished and living in the past.

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The Karaethon Cycle

TDR,Ch6

He shall slay his people with the sword of peace, and destroy them with the leaf.

The sword of peace is probably Justice.

 

The sword of peace was just a metaphor. It was a reference to how the knowledge that they had once been peaceful pacifists and how they had abandoned their ways had broken many of the Aiel, bringing on the bleakness. What role would Justice play? He's not actually going to kill any Aiel with it.

 

Did you miss the word probably? I gave it as an option. Anyhow; probably it's a metaphor

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First, I think the vision is clearly dystopian. The Aiel have been indispensable in fighting the Dark One. To see them hunted to extinction and reduced to beggars is sad. The destruction of a culture in and of itself is generally sad.

 

Second, if I remember correctly, something that is interesting to me is that Rand at some point in TGS had the Aiel distributing resources to the people. Rhuarc tells Rand that the Aiel are suited to this task. At the time, it seemed an indication of Rand's loosening grip on rationality, but it also seems an ominous portent as to the fate of the Aiel after seeing Aviendha's vision.

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