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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Balefire


Smittyphi
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Why doesn't the Dark One just order his channelers to Balefire everyone? Isn't his ultimate purpose to destroy the creator? Wouldn't balefire make the pattern collapse and he the winner?

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He's afraid that they will rebel against him, probably. They are very reluctant to use it for the most part - they want there to be a world left to rule when it's all said and done. Only Moridin has shown signs of being on board with Pattern-destruction.

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I've often wondered the same thing. If indeed the intent of the Dark One is to unravel the pattern then why not just balefire everything in sight, destroy the pattern, stop the wheel, and essentially undo any other over used metaphors and, I assume, start with a clean slate and make yourself God.

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Well, if you read the context of the one time that we did see the Dark One bring that subject up, Demandred's hesitation is pretty clear. It seems as though the Dark One was testing his loyalty by asking him to do something he really, really didn't want to do.

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Moridin alone might not be able to unravel the pattern? He might also attract attention, if he started BFing everything he came across. Maybe someone would kill him (again) if he made himself that much of a target? He's also using TP exclusively, and that might have more of a price than we know so far? He can't use any angreal when using the TP, either.

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I haven't been able to resolve this question either.

 

It rather undermines my perception of the Dark One if he cannot compel just one of his channelers of sufficient strength to use balefire. From what I remember it seemed to me that a mediocre strength channeler with an angreal would be enough to break the pattern.

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It would require the Choedan Kal to break the Pattern - that's why Lews Therin was so scared of using it, because it could crack the world 'like an egg' - but we do know that they have been unraveling the Pattern with balefire. We can see the effects.

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It would require the Choedan Kal to break the Pattern - that's why Lews Therin was so scared of using it, because it could crack the world 'like an egg' - but we do know that they have been unraveling the Pattern with balefire. We can see the effects.

That's interesting. I had thought all the climate problems and bubbles of evil were the result of the weakening of the seals on the Dark One's Prison. I had wondered why, in the AoL, such affects weren't seen when there weren't any seals on the bore for decades.

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Yeah, I thought that the bubbles of evil and all that other stuff was simply the Dark One's touch, and not necessarily the effects of balefire.

 

From what I remember, the first time we saw a bubble of evil was in the opening chapters of book 4. The only person who had been balefired up to that point was Be'lal, and he wasn't killed with a large amount of BF. Probably not enough to cause the bubble of evil we saw then.

As far as I know, the only direct effect we've seen Balefire cause on the pattern was the Balescream in TGS.

 

In any case, as mentioned above, the DO doesn't order the Forsaken to BF everyone, because if they knew his goal was to destroy the world and them along with it, they'd be much more reluctant to follow him and obey his orders.

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It would require the Choedan Kal to break the Pattern - that's why Lews Therin was so scared of using it, because it could crack the world 'like an egg' - but we do know that they have been unraveling the Pattern with balefire. We can see the effects.

That's interesting. I had thought all the climate problems and bubbles of evil were the result of the weakening of the seals on the Dark One's Prison. I had wondered why, in the AoL, such affects weren't seen when there weren't any seals on the bore for decades.

Brandon indicated otherwise:

 

Austin Moore on Twitter - 6 January 2011

 

Who was the Lord of Chaos that Demandred and Taim both mention? There has been tons of debate.

 

Brandon

 

Really? I thought that one was obvious. What's the debate about?

 

Terez

 

It's Rand. Look in the BWB re: Feast of Fools.

 

Austin

 

Why was Demandred and Taim saying, "Let the Lord of Chaos rule" if it was Rand? Sorry just read through series once so far :(

 

Terez

 

Here's a quote for you:

 

The Feast of Fools

Celebrated in Tammaz (in Arad Doman and the Borderlands) or Saven (everywhere else), the exact day varying according to locality. A day in which all order is deliberately inverted; the high perform lowly tasks (running errands, serving at table, etc.) while the low do no work and give orders to their usual superiors. In many villages and towns the most foolish person is given a title such as the Lord/Lady of Unreason/Misrule/Chaos or the King/Queen of Fools. Not an honor sought, but for that one day everyone has to obey whatever orders, however foolish, are given by the chosen one. (Called the Festival of Unreason in Saldaea; the Festival of Fools in Kandor; Foolday in Baerlon and the Two Rivers.)

 

Matt Hatch

 

I've always enjoyed this theory about the Lord of Chaos. It's fun. http://bit.ly/fghYSz

 

Brandon

 

That is a good theory for people to be reading.

 

Terez

 

YAY. OMG, that theory has been on the rocks for years because of contradicting tour reports.

 

Terez

 

Also, your tour quotes were vague enough to allow it but most people didn't see it that way.

 

Brandon

 

I didn't say the theory was true, just that you should study it. :) But I would like to see those tour reports.

 

Terez

 

Yes, yes. :) Also, your vague(ish) wording: http://bit.ly/gbMIP1 And the contradicting RJ reports: http://bit.ly/fsDp5q

 

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I like the theory of Demandred using balefire to unravel the pattern but I don't believe all the things like the bubbles of evil and climate issues were the results of that. Those were likely caused by the weakening of the seals, at least in part. They definitely started occurring well before Demandred got his balefire assignment. The weather was turning wrong for months before that as is mentioned in LOC, prologue. Also, the first bubble of evil occurred in TSR I believe.

Edited by herid
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Yeah, I'm not talking about bubbles of evil (didn't really read the quote I was responding to). I'm talking about things like towns disappearing and appearing out of nowhere, and corridors changing places, etc.

 

PS - Though Brandon's comments do suggest that the weakening of the Pattern itself increases the Dark One's ability to touch the world, which has results such as bubbles of evil and ghosts.

Edited by Terez
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i thought the weakening of the pattern was shown by reality shifting, rooms moving in the tower, that thing where people feel like they're coming apart into nothingness and then snap back into reality (they mention this when perrin's getting around to rescue faile, i think; sorry, no reference books handy).

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My guess (and an obvious answer) as to the answer to the original question is that The Dark One does not want the Pattern to be completely unraveled but only wants it weak enough to be wholesale altered by his touch. There is evidence of this.

 

(1) The biggest piece of evidence is that we haven't seen the complete destruction of the Pattern via wanton use of balefire. As noted by Terez, Moridin is on board with Pattern destruction. If this is the case, why doesn't Moridin just go wild balefiring whatever he can? Wouldn't the Dark One have accomplished this with all of his channellers in his service? It is beyond easy.

 

Addressing the point that they would rebel against his wishes, all he needs is one jerk who can weave balefire who is nihilist enough to do this. It seems he has Moridin already. I don't see that as a powerful enough resistance preventing the absolute destruction of the Pattern.

 

(2) The Shadow in the War of Power stopped using balefire as a whole after using it prolifically. Perhaps it was just a collective decision on the part of them, but it seems unlikely that it would be made without input from the Dark One.

 

(3) Demandred orders to use balefire were obeyed. Demandred is also not aware of everyone else's orders. The Dark One could dance around the resistance to balefire by ordering different Forsaken to balefire different important targets. By the time they realized that the Dark One wanted to destroy the Pattern it would be too late.

 

(4) Additionally, Demandred was apparently given a target list to balefire. While this could be The Dark One either putting point (3) into action or could be the Dark One taking advantage of balefiring targets that would have an outsized impact on destroying the Pattern, it seems to be a reserved, strategic use of balefire. This is obviously more speculative.

 

I think the Dark One wants the Pattern frayed at the point of destruction so that he can enforce his will upon it, whatever that may be. Some hair brained theories I've thought of is that he could imprison the Creator if he turned the Pattern against him or he could at least escape from his prison.

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Guest Emu on the Loose

The part that's hard for me to reconcile is that the Dark One's plans to destroy the world rather than let the Forsaken rule it under the Shadow's banner are pretty transparent when it comes to the DO's views on balefire. A smart person should make that connection, and so far most of the Forsaken never suggested that they were aware of it--yet they're all smart people.

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The part that's hard for me to reconcile is that the Dark One's plans to destroy the world rather than let the Forsaken rule it under the Shadow's banner are pretty transparent when it comes to the DO's views on balefire. A smart person should make that connection, and so far most of the Forsaken never suggested that they were aware of it--yet they're all smart people.

 

Would YOU question the DO?

 

They all most likely at least suspect it, but they have given their souls to the Shadow. The Forsaken more than any others. Its the DO or death. I'd say they keep their reservations to themselves. The DO can be very harsh on those who do not obey.

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They talk about how in the age of legends war they all used balefire and ended up wiping cities from existance. So they made a truce aout balefire. So pretty much the forsaken won't do it because they know what will happen and think they will rule the world. As for everyone else it seems like only a handful know how to make balefire.

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This is why I believe one of the biggest misunderstandings in the books is Moridin's belief that the Dark One wants to destroy the Pattern.

I think it's clear the Dark One doesn't want to Rule or remake the world in his image either.

 

I think he wants to die.

The Creator Creates Life, so it's natural to assume that the Dark One is the antithesis of that.

He wants to destroy everything.

However, we haven't seen him kill anyone or anything, and he seems to be responsible for dealing with the Dead.

Maybe he can't die because he's fundamentally part of the spinning of the wheel and its workings.

 

If he wanted to destroy everything he could easily get some crazy channelers to start balefiring everything.

They're not ALL wanting to Rule, Verin pointed out that the Forsaken are picked because they have that lust for Power in common, not any other trait.

Some people just want to watch the world burn, and they're not being used.

 

I think he wants to die, and needs Rand to kill him, that's why when he got Rand to touch the True Source Rand became a killer.

He needs Rand to have that type of mentality for when they face each other.

 

Luckily he also has Fain around. Rand won't do the deed now, but Fain might.

If he does I look for Fain to become the next Dark One.

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'http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_One'

Most ominously, power to alter reality: in Knife of Dreams, the plans of buildings change randomly, the dead are commonly seen by those who knew them, and saidar itself seems to be weakening. Some characters have voiced the theory that the Pattern itself imprisons the Dark One, and that this seeming unraveling of the Pattern is the last and greatest omen of his emergence.

 

'http://wot.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_One'

Verin Sedai says the Dark One is the "embodiment of paradox and chaos, destroyer of reason and logic, breaker of balance, the unmaker of order".

 

'http://wot.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_One'

She (Verin) also states that, while she believes she understands the Forsaken, she has no idea what the Dark One's goal is or why he does what he does.

 

'http://wot.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_One'

Moridin however, has stated that the Dark One's eventual goal will not be to destroy reality and remake it, but rather to simply destroy everything. To this end, he is frustrated by his inability to step outside of Time.

 

 

I think I have missed a few, and I have loaned out my B W B so can't check that one. =S

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