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The nature of Rand Sedai


sleepinghour
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As Mark Grayson said, the point of living, dying and living again... you could argue that Rand is the dragon reborn and he is special, thus he is LTT in a new body, but we have again and again heard from RJ that the soul is the same but there are 2 diff personalities. There is a quote somewhere. And frankly... I doubt RJ would make a misstake on that one.

 

 

Why would it be a mistake though? It was true at the time, true all the way up to VoG. If RJ were alive to answer the same question today, the answer might be different since Rand is obviously different than he was the first time the question was answered.

RJ stated that in his world souls would have different personalities when they were reborn, although having the same soul. So I don´t think the answer would change based on when we asked the question.

 

If he answered 100% truthfully, and said "Rand and LTT are two different people now, but in a later book they will merge into one person"... well, you just don't answer questions like that. And you can's say RAFO for every question posed. It is also not impossible that after answering the question, he came up with the idea of merging them into one person in VoG. I doubt that. A big thing like merging in VoG was hardly made up due to a question from a fan.

 

It seems to me that after VoG Rand's personality is much more like that of LTT than the sheep herder we know and love. Min asks if he's really 400 years old, and he says something like "almost 450 if you count the years I spent in the Two Rivers... do those even count?" He's now LTT, and isn't sure if the time he spent pretending to be Rand should even count towards his age.

Then it is Rand´s personality that has changed, doesn´t mean that he is LTT. Hmm I´m wondering if our questions will be partly answered when we get Rand´s PoV. Oh and I must say this has been a really nice discussion so far =)

 

Edit: My answers are in bold.

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We have. We disagree. If King Tut died thousands of years ago, and you happen to have some of his memories, mere fragments of the man he was, without this overwriting your existing personality, then you are you, plus a bit of King Tut, as opposed to you are King Tut.

 

This is not a fair analysis of what was being said. You say 'you happen to have some of his memories'. I'm saying, if you have ALL of his memories. Once an experience has happened, all it is is a memory. If you have all of the memories of a person, then you have all of the experiences and wisdom of that person. In that case I'd say you are that person. If you have all of the memories of that person, plus some of your own, then you're that person, but you've learned a bit more. In the real world there's no such thing as a soul, so, just having all the memories of a person is slightly different. With you're talk of happening to have mere fragments of the King Tut, you're talking more about the Mat situation than the Rand one.

 

Rand is Rand, plus a bit of LTT. Not LTT entire, a new person with some of a different person in him. He is the same person as Rand, but not as LTT. Rand 2.0, with the new Lews Therin patch added.

 

If this is true then I'd have to rethink my conclusions. My understanding was that he has all of LTT's memories. But if he just has 'a bit of LTT' then maybe you're right. However, like I said, I read it as Rand integrating all of LTT.

 

We can all agree that in RJ's universe there is such a thing as a soul. This is beyond debate.

Its relevance to the matter at hand is, however, entirely up for debate. After all, every person has a soul, but every soul has many people attached to it, so the mere fact of two people sharing a soul says nothing - absoutely nothing - about whether or not they are the same.

 

I think that goes too far. I agree that having merely the same soul doesn't make two people the same. That's what I explained in Cases C and D in my post. But having the same soul doesn't say absolutely nothing about whether two people are the same. It is a factor, just like having the same body, or having the same memories. In a universe where there are definitely souls, and these souls are spun out into existence over and over again, it has to be the case that the soul has some relevance to the person. Otherwise, why not just destroy a soul after each life and create a new one for each new life. The very existence of the soul implies its relevance. As I said, it's not the only factor, but it is a factor.

 

If two characters share only some of the same memories, but not a body, or a soul, what then? This is basically the case of Mat and the memories he's gained from the Finns. He has the same memories as the people that actually lived them, but he does not share a body or a soul with any of those people. In this case, I don't think he can be said to be the same person as those other characters.

Given that having the same soul is not a relevant consideration, if sharing memories alone is enough, then Mat must be considered these people. He remembers these lives as if they were his own, not as if they were someone elses.

 

Again, how is having the same soul COMPLETELY irrelevant to this discussion. If, as you seem to insist, having the same soul is never a relevant consideration, then what is the point of a soul? You would argue the soul into nonexistence. Because souls exist, they must be taken into some consideration. My point is that if you combine the same soul with the same memories, then you get the same person, regardless of body. Without the soul being a consideration, the only things you have left are a body and memories, and there's no way to distinguish Ishamael-Moridin from Mat, other than method.

 

That's missing the point of what people are saying - it's not that only a short space of time passed, it's that everything about them save body was transferred wholesale into a new body, and nothing of the person who inhabited that body before them survived. That is completely different to Rand/LTT.

 

It is not completely different. As I laid out in my post. The differences are that Rand has 20 years worth of memories in his body that have not been erased (that is exactly the correct way to describe it because Moridin's body had it's own memories that were erased), and that Rand already had the same soul (so that didn't need to be erased). My point is that 20 years worth of memories are personality changing, but not person changing.

 

In the case of Rand, we have a person being born, living his life, then he gets memories belonging to another person stuffed into his head, he remembers another life as if it were his own. This is almost exactly the case we have with Mat, a case most people are fine with accepting is Mat with other men's memories, not Mat is now all those people (and he always was).

 

You only reach this conclusion because you ignore the soul. This is exactly where the soul IS relevant. Note that this doesn't make the soul the only relevant thing, or even necessarily the most important thing. It simply means that when all the other factors are the same (which, they actually are not since Mat only has fragments of memories), then sameness of soul is a deciding factor in sameness of person.

 

If you completely scrubbed Rand, left his body a hollow shell with nothing of Rand, then dumped LTT's memories, skills, and personality entire into that empty shell, that would be the same situation. That did not happen.

 

Exactly. But only because they shared the same soul. If you did all of that without transferring the soul, you'd just have a clone of LTT. Can the clone be held responsible for LTT's actions? That's an interesting philosophical question in the real world, but the existence of souls in the Wheel of Time world makes it moot. We KNOW that one of them (the one with the soul) is the real thing, and the other is just a copy. Now, the actual characters in the book don't know that for sure, since they aren't privy to all the information we have. So that raises interesting questions about how they would/should react to some of these people. But we, with the benefit of virtual omniscience, can make the distinction.

 

The added factor with Rand is his own 20 years of memories. But as I've said elsewhere, addition of memories is personality changing, not person changing. If Rand lives another 20 years, he'll have another 20 years of memories, but he'll still be Rand (and still be LTT!).

 

When you look back on yourself 10 years ago, don't you feel like you're more yourself now than you were then?
No.
Don't you sometimes question why you acted like you did?
No.

 

Fair enough, I guess you haven't changed over the course of your life. I certainly think about some of the things I did as a teenager, and laugh at myself for my naivete or my decisions. And I definitely think that if 27-year-old-me were in 17-year-old-me's body, I would act differently.

 

What about Birgitte?

And I have to restate my disagreement with this point: she is not any of those people, though they are a part of her. She didn't do the things they did.

 

I respect your right to disagree, but all you've done here is state that disagreement. My conclusion about Birgitte was based on the zany, but coherent, philosophy I explained regarding the interplay between souls, bodies and memories. That combination is the only consistent and comprehensive way that I can explain not hating Mat for his memories, but hating Moridin for his. If you think she isn't any of those people, even the instant she got dragged into the real world, then was she any of those people when she was in T'A'R?

 

Moridin is a different case because there is only one man in there. No dispute, no other lives - the same is not true of Rand or Birgitte or Mat.

 

What do you mean 'no other lives'? What about Ishamael? Are you saying that Moridin and Ishamael are living the SAME life. I don't think that's true. Ishamael died. Quite dramatically. Then the Dark Lord took his soul and memories and put them in another body - Moridin. If the Dark Lord had accidentally forgotten to wipe that body of its memories, then Moridin would be EXACTLY like Rand. The difference between them is not one of lives, but of additional memories.

 

Mat and Birgitte are different because there are multiple other lives in their cases. But, Birgitte differs from Mat in that all of her memories are from people she shares a soul with, so while she remembers their lives, she is the same as those people. I grant that Birgitte's is a wacky and confusing case. But isn't that appropriate, since she (as far as we know) is the only person ripped into existence outside of the Pattern's will?

 

Right now she's somewhere in between, but once she completely forgets everything, she'll be Case B, and can no longer be held accountable for any previous Birgitte's actions.

Would you accept that it is all right for someone to get away with murder simply because they no longer remember committing it?

 

That's an interesting question. I think it depends on how much they've forgotten. If the only thing they've forgotten is the actual commission of the murder, then I'd be less inclined to let them get away with it. I might still, but I'd have to think long and hard about it, and I'd want to know why they'd forgotten. If, on the other hand, they've forgotten the last 5 years of their life, for example, then I'd be more comfortable with it. If they had total amnesia, then I'd be even more comfortable.

 

Lest you think I'm a mentalist, let me point out that the law (at least in America) also may forgive them. The defense of temporary insanity is an acceptable, albeit difficult to prove, defense for murder in American courts. Leaving aside the connotations that go with the name 'temporary insanity', the practical upshot of it may be the defendant explaining what happened up to a point, and then claiming, 'I blacked out and when I came to I was standing there with a bloody knife in my hands and my wife dead. I don't know how it happened. I'm very sorry.' In other words, one method of proof for temporary insanity is effectively that you do not remember committing the murder. Now, you might be skeptical about a man who claims not to remember committing murder. But that skepticism is that you don't believe him when he says he doesn't remember. In this case, we are told as a fact that he does not remember. So that skepticism is unwarranted, and we have to deal with the consequences of the memory loss.

 

All of this should be read with the understanding that the real world is different from the Wheel of Time world in a few ways. First, we are told of the definite existence of souls in the Wheel of Time world. Second, we accept as mundane fact that a person's soul and memories can be transferred into another body (a completely fantastical thing in the real world). Given those circumstances, I think my philosophy and conclusions are appropriate.

 

TL;DR
What does this mean?

Too long; didn't read. It's a summary for people who didn't want to read my irritatingly long post.

 

In conclusion:

Rand is not LTT, so even though he remembers lTT's actions as if they were his own they are not, he does not share the other man's achievements.

Mat is not the people from his memories, even though he remembers their actions as if they were his own and he does not share their achievements.

Birgitte is not the people from her memories, even if she remembers their actions as if they were her own, etc.

Each is a new person with memories of other lives.

Moridin, Osan'gar, Aran'gar and Cyndane are not new people, they are the same old people transferred to new bodies - no change beyond the physical.

 

I agree with you about Mat and the Forsaken, but not about Rand and only partially about Birgitte.

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Again, how is having the same soul COMPLETELY irrelevant to this discussion.

 

Because RJ says it is, this is the cosmology that he created.

 

Birgitte makes that clear when she says she "had no right" to previous memories.

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To Navahgar:

 

You said:

Once an experience has happened, all it is is a memory. If you have all of the memories of a person, then you have all of the experiences and wisdom of that person. In that case I'd say you are that person. If you have all of the memories of that person, plus some of your own, then you're that person, but you've learned a bit more. In the real world there's no such thing as a soul, so, just having all the memories of a person is slightly different. With you're talk of happening to have mere fragments of the King Tut, you're talking more about the Mat situation than the Rand one.

 

True that an experience turns into a memory but only if you are self-aware and can reflect back on it. That doesn´t mean though that ALL of your memories are experiences. So having all the memories of a person does not mean you have all the experiences of that person. I tend to look at it like a dream. I have had dreams were I have been raped, seen aliens, flying, stabbing people, turning into a dragon and so on. Those were very vidid dreams and I remember them, my memory of them does not equal that I´ve experienced them.

If Rand has all of LTTs memories- which I don´t think he has, not even LTT has all of his own memories or knowledge- doesn´t mean that he has experienced all that or that he is LTT.

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Again, how is having the same soul COMPLETELY irrelevant to this discussion.

 

Because RJ says it is, this is the cosmology that he created.

 

Birgitte makes that clear when she says she "had no right" to previous memories.

 

I think you're referring to this quote:

 

Crossroads of Twilight Book Tour, Barnes and Noble signing NY, NY - 7 January 2003 - David Funcke reporting

 

Q: The question is, with Rand and Lews Therin, do they have one soul or two souls in the body?

RJ: They have one soul with two personalities. The reincarnation of souls does not mean reincarnation of personalities. The personality develops with each reincarnation of the soul. This is the cosmology that I [cobbled] together.

 

Time in TAR doesn't change this and the cosmology is the same regardless of who you are.

 

If so, then I don't think it conflicts with what I'm saying. I describe personality as something derived from the combination of soul, body and memories. I agree that Rand and Lews Therin, especially at that point, had very different personalities. In fact, I also think that Rand Sedai and Lews Therin have different personalities. But now that Rand Sedai remembers all of his life as Lews Therin, I think he is the same person, albeit one with a more mature personality developed from 20 extra years of good care.

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To Navahgar:

 

You said:

Once an experience has happened, all it is is a memory. If you have all of the memories of a person, then you have all of the experiences and wisdom of that person. In that case I'd say you are that person. If you have all of the memories of that person, plus some of your own, then you're that person, but you've learned a bit more. In the real world there's no such thing as a soul, so, just having all the memories of a person is slightly different. With you're talk of happening to have mere fragments of the King Tut, you're talking more about the Mat situation than the Rand one.

 

True that an experience turns into a memory but only if you are self-aware and can reflect back on it. That doesn´t mean though that ALL of your memories are experiences. So having all the memories of a person does not mean you have all the experiences of that person. I tend to look at it like a dream. I have had dreams were I have been raped, seen aliens, flying, stabbing people, turning into a dragon and so on. Those were very vidid dreams and I remember them, my memory of them does not equal that I´ve experienced them.

If Rand has all of LTTs memories- which I don´t think he has, not even LTT has all of his own memories or knowledge- doesn´t mean that he has experienced all that or that he is LTT.

 

Fair enough. I accept that nobody remembers everything that happened to them. I also accept that part of experience comes from how you reflect on your memories. But, where does how you reflect on your memories come from? You use your current wisdom to reflect on memories, and turn them into experiences, that then inform and expand your wisdom. Your current wisdom is in turn derived from previous experience and memories. Once something is past, it is past, and all that exists of it is your memory (and the real world consequences of whatever it was). If Rand has all of the memories of LTT that LTT had (by that I take your point about LTT not remembering every detail of his life), then how does he not have the same wisdom and experience? You may say that he looks on a memory now and views it differently from how LTT did (in fact I would definitely say that). But isn't that the same as 27-year-old-me looking back at something that happened to 7-year-old-me and viewing it differently than 17-year-old-me did?

 

The reason I'm trying so hard to keep this working, is that I instinctively think of Moridin as Ishamael, and I want to have a framework in which to maintain that belief.

 

With respect to your dreams. They sound largely awesome. Flying and dragons and whatnot.

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I said, "as conclusive as you can get..."

I know what you said, and I disagreed with you on the grounds that it could be a lot more conclusive.

That's fine. It's all quite subjective. I mean, some people are still arguing Asmodean.

 

 

If you accept that the Voice is a construct of Rand's own thoughts, then the natural conclusion is that Rand thinks he's LTT.

But if the voice is Rand's own, not LTT's, then you must also accept that Rand isn't LTT. And that therefore LTT died and never came back. His personality is gone. Rand now has another man's memories integrated, but that man died. Only memories remain, not a personality.

The problem with your argument is you've added an extra premise. I never said "not LTT's." The Voice is Rand's own. It is also LTT's own voice. Because Rand is LTT. And LTT continues to live because he is Rand. LTT died, yes, and then was reborn. With a clean slate but who gradually regains his memories and personality.

 

 

And what about LTT's ability to draw.

I take it as good evidence they are not the same person.

Except it turns out that Rand can draw. Anyways, I brought this up only as a rebuttal to your hypothetical "what if Rand doesn't know LTT" scenario. Clearly, Rand is not just making stuff up.

 

 

One could argue that he is wrong. But if he is wrong, how can anyone in the book short of the Creator and the Dark One tell?

Why would they need to? We can draw conclusions from the evidence independently of the characters.

Unfortunately, everything is presented from the characters' POV's. If no one in the book can tell, how can we? At some point, you have to just assume people know what they're talking about. If Rand claims he is LTT and there is nothing within the books that contradict it, then we should assume it to be true. At least until we get new information that may contradict it.

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I'd say Rand is most similar to the recycled Forsaken in his situation. Mechanically, I think of the typical process as something like this:

 

The Pattern is something like the server on a computer network. Every person is connected into this network. You can think of each person like a client - separate, yet connected to the Pattern.

 

Now, souls are something like external hard drives that contain a unique operating system with a unique identifying key.

 

Where, then, would memories be stored? Not in the soul, since people typically don't have access to their memories when reborn. My impression is that memories are stored in the mind of the person, and mirrored onto the Pattern (like on an internal hard drive on the client computer, with the data backed up on the server) Now, typically, when a person is reborn, their soul is plugged into a fresh machine, with a blank slate as far as memories go. The soul could have certain tendencies - for example, the Pattern would always feed the Birgitte soul an advanced talent for archery, a connection to Gaidal, etc. - but it has no access to the backup memories of its former lives.

 

Rand and the Forsaken are similar, with slight differences. In Rand's case, he was reborn in a fresh machine like any other. He developed new memories like anyone else, then eventually the memories from his previous lives were downloaded into his brain. The newly added Rand memories are still there, but so are the older LTT ones.

 

With Ishi/Moridin, when he died, he didn't go through the typical process. Rather, it's like the Dark One ripped the external Soul drive out of another person, formatted the internal Memory drive, plugged in Ishi/Moridin's Soul drive, and downloaded his memories. The key differences are that it's a used Body rather than a fresh one, and that there was no delay between plugging in the Soul and accessing the Memories.

 

In both cases, the Body has changed (one's new, the other used) but the Soul, and Memories are different. Whether or not either is the same "person" depends on whether the hardware is important to your definition of personhood - but whether there's some added data in the Memories before the LTT/Moridin is downloaded shouldn't impact that call.

 

Mat's different. He's spun out like any other, new Body, fresh Memories. However, there's a place on the Pattern (Finnland) where, when people access it, some of their Memories get mirrored over. When Mat access this location, some of those memories were copied to his brain. The only difference between he and an ordinary person is that he got some of his Memories from an external source.

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Unfortunately, everything is presented from the characters' POV's. If no one in the book can tell, how can we? At some point, you have to just assume people know what they're talking about.

 

 

Sense of Wonder interview - October/November 1994 - Carolyn Fusinato reporting

Another recurring theme is lack of information, and the mutability of information. No one knows everything. Everyone has to operate on incomplete knowledge, and quite often they know they are operating on incomplete knowledge, but they still have to make decisions. The reader quite often knows that the reason why a character is doing something is totally erroneous, but it's still the best information that the character in the book has. I like to explore the changeability of knowledge, the way that, in the beginning, characters see things in one way, and as they grow and learn more, we and they find out that what they knew as the truth wasn't necessarily the whole truth. Sometimes it's hardly the truth at all.

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Again, how is having the same soul COMPLETELY irrelevant to this discussion.

 

Because RJ says it is, this is the cosmology that he created.

 

Birgitte makes that clear when she says she "had no right" to previous memories.

Haha. Doesn't it strike you as odd that Birgitte is agreeing with RJ that her situation is not possible?

 

I think Birgitte is a good example that rules can be bent if not broken.

 

 

 

Unfortunately, everything is presented from the characters' POV's. If no one in the book can tell, how can we? At some point, you have to just assume people know what they're talking about.

 

 

Sense of Wonder interview - October/November 1994 - Carolyn Fusinato reporting

Another recurring theme is lack of information, and the mutability of information. No one knows everything. Everyone has to operate on incomplete knowledge, and quite often they know they are operating on incomplete knowledge, but they still have to make decisions. The reader quite often knows that the reason why a character is doing something is totally erroneous, but it's still the best information that the character in the book has. I like to explore the changeability of knowledge, the way that, in the beginning, characters see things in one way, and as they grow and learn more, we and they find out that what they knew as the truth wasn't necessarily the whole truth. Sometimes it's hardly the truth at all.

I know we can't accept what the characters think and say as the truth. What I'm trying to say is we have no choice but to assume the characters know what they are talking about unless we have information that contradicts it.

 

Yes I'm aware Rand saying he is LTT directly contradicts what RJ said. I personally don't there's anyway to get around RJ's statements. Which is why I'm going through it: RJ was wrong. Stuff like that happens from time to time.

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Again, how is having the same soul COMPLETELY irrelevant to this discussion.

 

Because RJ says it is, this is the cosmology that he created.

 

Birgitte makes that clear when she says she "had no right" to previous memories.

Haha. Doesn't it strike you as odd that Birgitte is agreeing with RJ that her situation is not possible?

 

I think Birgitte is a good example that rules can be bent if not broken.

 

 

 

Unfortunately, everything is presented from the characters' POV's. If no one in the book can tell, how can we? At some point, you have to just assume people know what they're talking about.

 

 

Sense of Wonder interview - October/November 1994 - Carolyn Fusinato reporting

Another recurring theme is lack of information, and the mutability of information. No one knows everything. Everyone has to operate on incomplete knowledge, and quite often they know they are operating on incomplete knowledge, but they still have to make decisions. The reader quite often knows that the reason why a character is doing something is totally erroneous, but it's still the best information that the character in the book has. I like to explore the changeability of knowledge, the way that, in the beginning, characters see things in one way, and as they grow and learn more, we and they find out that what they knew as the truth wasn't necessarily the whole truth. Sometimes it's hardly the truth at all.

I know we can't accept what the characters think and say as the truth. What I'm trying to say is we have no choice but to assume the characters know what they are talking about unless we have information that contradicts it.

 

Yes I'm aware Rand saying he is LTT directly contradicts what RJ said. I personally don't there's anyway to get around RJ's statements. Which is why I'm going through it: RJ was wrong. Stuff like that happens from time to time.

 

Or, and much more likely in regards to the WoT, RJ knew exactly how his world worked and your interpretation of events is wrong. Especially when there is an alternative (and much more logical) explanation. Rand and LTT were separate people just like RJ said. Now Rand has the memories of another separate/different person in his head. There's no reason to try and work around RJ's straight forward explanation with convoluted spiritual discussions.

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Or, and much more likely in regards to the WoT, RJ knew exactly how his world worked and your interpretation of events is wrong. Especially when there is an alternative (and much more logical) explanation. Rand and LTT were separate people just like RJ said. Now Rand has the memories of another separate/different person in his head. There's no reason to try and work around RJ's straight forward explanation with convoluted spiritual discussions.

 

As I said before, I don't think that Robert Jordan's quote from the Crossroads of Twilight book tour conflicts with what I'm saying at all. He was saying that the reincarnation of souls does not mean the reincarnation of personalities. This is exactly in line with my evaluation. What we are talking about here is what the meaning of LTT's reintegration into Rand's mind is. That is not the question that was before RJ, and, given the other reintegrations we've seen in the series, I think it means that Rand IS LTT. Rand and LTT were separate people. They're not anymore.

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Or, and much more likely in regards to the WoT, RJ knew exactly how his world worked and your interpretation of events is wrong. Especially when there is an alternative (and much more logical) explanation. Rand and LTT were separate people just like RJ said. Now Rand has the memories of another separate/different person in his head. There's no reason to try and work around RJ's straight forward explanation with convoluted spiritual discussions.

Except now Rand is acting like he's LTT and we have to come up with theories as to why he's doing this instead of just saying, maybe he is.

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Or, and much more likely in regards to the WoT, RJ knew exactly how his world worked and your interpretation of events is wrong. Especially when there is an alternative (and much more logical) explanation. Rand and LTT were separate people just like RJ said. Now Rand has the memories of another separate/different person in his head. There's no reason to try and work around RJ's straight forward explanation with convoluted spiritual discussions.

 

As I said before, I don't think that Robert Jordan's quote from the Crossroads of Twilight book tour conflicts with what I'm saying at all. He was saying that the reincarnation of souls does not mean the reincarnation of personalities. This is exactly in line with my evaluation. What we are talking about here is what the meaning of LTT's reintegration into Rand's mind is. That is not the question that was before RJ, and, given the other reintegrations we've seen in the series, I think it means that Rand IS LTT. Rand and LTT were separate people. They're not anymore.

 

Which is a reasonable conclusion. I don't agree - I tend to view the new Rand as Rand al'Thor with some additional memories. But my main sticking point is that there, at the very least, were two separate people. Although if they did merge I wouldn't refer to Rand as LTT which infers that the consiousness that was Rand never existed. It would be more like Rand Therin Telamon.

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Which is a reasonable conclusion. I don't agree - I tend to view the new Rand as Rand al'Thor with some additional memories. But my main sticking point is that there, at the very least, were two separate people.

 

Fair enough. I think there are a lot of people who agree with you.

 

Although if they did merge I wouldn't refer to Rand as LTT which infers that the consiousness that was Rand never existed. It would be more like Rand Therin Telamon.

 

That makes sense to me too. I'm not saying Rand has been usurped by LTT and should now be referred to as LTT. I'm basically saying Rand is LTT, and you could call him Rand or LTT, or RTT if you want.

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Or, and much more likely in regards to the WoT, RJ knew exactly how his world worked and your interpretation of events is wrong. Especially when there is an alternative (and much more logical) explanation. Rand and LTT were separate people just like RJ said. Now Rand has the memories of another separate/different person in his head. There's no reason to try and work around RJ's straight forward explanation with convoluted spiritual discussions.

 

As I said before, I don't think that Robert Jordan's quote from the Crossroads of Twilight book tour conflicts with what I'm saying at all. He was saying that the reincarnation of souls does not mean the reincarnation of personalities. This is exactly in line with my evaluation. What we are talking about here is what the meaning of LTT's reintegration into Rand's mind is. That is not the question that was before RJ, and, given the other reintegrations we've seen in the series, I think it means that Rand IS LTT. Rand and LTT were separate people. They're not anymore.

 

That's not the only quote though...

 

RJ's blog 4 October 2005 "ONE MORE TIME"

 

- Everybody fears death because the being that is reborn, while possessing the same soul, will not be the same person. The fear is simple. I will cease to exist. Someone else will exist, bearing my soul. But I will cease.

 

Because RJ says it is, this is the cosmology that he created.

 

Birgitte makes that clear when she says she "had no right" to previous memories.

Haha. Doesn't it strike you as odd that Birgitte is agreeing with RJ that her situation is not possible?

 

I think Birgitte is a good example that rules can be bent if not broken.

 

Not really, I do feel that she was agreeing with RJ in that she had no right to them because they were not her own...

Edited by Suttree
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Or, and much more likely in regards to the WoT, RJ knew exactly how his world worked and your interpretation of events is wrong. Especially when there is an alternative (and much more logical) explanation. Rand and LTT were separate people just like RJ said. Now Rand has the memories of another separate/different person in his head. There's no reason to try and work around RJ's straight forward explanation with convoluted spiritual discussions.

Except now Rand is acting like he's LTT and we have to come up with theories as to why he's doing this instead of just saying, maybe he is.

 

He's not acting like LTT. He's acting like Rand with the additional confidence and knowledge that having access to LTT's memories brings him. Yes, it effects his personality. Having that knowledge and memories will effect your feelings and how you view the world. Remembering Illeyna dying will make Rand sad, even guilty but it's only because he has access to those memories. It was still LTT's actions, not Rand al'Thor's. LTT had feelings for Lanfear/Mierin so now Rand has a soft spot for her because he can remember those feelings. But it was LTT that had a relationship with her, not Rand al'Thor. So yes, those memories will effect his view of the world and his feelings just like his own memories. It doesn't change the fact that the memories (and the actions that caused the memories) come from two very different, separate men. Blending them together results in a person that is not exactly like either man was before it happened. Doesn't change the fact that Rand and LTT were separate people. And since RJ has already said that Rand and LTT are different and that each rebirth of the soul is a new person, it seems silly to even have to have this debate.

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To Navahgar:

 

You said:

Once an experience has happened, all it is is a memory. If you have all of the memories of a person, then you have all of the experiences and wisdom of that person. In that case I'd say you are that person. If you have all of the memories of that person, plus some of your own, then you're that person, but you've learned a bit more. In the real world there's no such thing as a soul, so, just having all the memories of a person is slightly different. With you're talk of happening to have mere fragments of the King Tut, you're talking more about the Mat situation than the Rand one.

 

True that an experience turns into a memory but only if you are self-aware and can reflect back on it. That doesn´t mean though that ALL of your memories are experiences. So having all the memories of a person does not mean you have all the experiences of that person. I tend to look at it like a dream. I have had dreams were I have been raped, seen aliens, flying, stabbing people, turning into a dragon and so on. Those were very vidid dreams and I remember them, my memory of them does not equal that I´ve experienced them.

If Rand has all of LTTs memories- which I don´t think he has, not even LTT has all of his own memories or knowledge- doesn´t mean that he has experienced all that or that he is LTT.

 

Fair enough. I accept that nobody remembers everything that happened to them. I also accept that part of experience comes from how you reflect on your memories. But, where does how you reflect on your memories come from? You use your current wisdom to reflect on memories, and turn them into experiences, that then inform and expand your wisdom. Your current wisdom is in turn derived from previous experience and memories. Once something is past, it is past, and all that exists of it is your memory (and the real world consequences of whatever it was). If Rand has all of the memories of LTT that LTT had (by that I take your point about LTT not remembering every detail of his life), then how does he not have the same wisdom and experience? You may say that he looks on a memory now and views it differently from how LTT did (in fact I would definitely say that). But isn't that the same as 27-year-old-me looking back at something that happened to 7-year-old-me and viewing it differently than 17-year-old-me did?

 

The reason I'm trying so hard to keep this working, is that I instinctively think of Moridin as Ishamael, and I want to have a framework in which to maintain that belief.

 

With respect to your dreams. They sound largely awesome. Flying and dragons and whatnot.

 

We are so polite =) lol. Your question about if Rand has all the memories then why doesn´t he have the same wisdom and xp as LTT had. My take on it is this, and this is just my interpretation= just because you have all the memories of something doesn´t mean that you will have the wisdom to act on it. Rand may have all the memories of the things that LTT did but not the wisdom, xp or insight to act on it. Just as we have memories of things we have done that may have been stupid doesn´t mean that we will not act out them again, despite the memory. In Rand´s case he has just the memories, not the memory of the experience (i.e. him doing it) i think. When you look back on something you did when you were younger you view it with a different view, you realize things and so on and so forth. But the thing is... it´s still your personality, not another personality/aspect of your soul. When Rand is looking/remembering back he is remembering 400 years of a person that he doesn´t identify with. It would be like 26 year old teacher me looking back at 15 year Roman slave girl me. Even if I had her memories doesn´t mean I would be able to conclude some visdom from them, just because her/my realm of xp as a slavegirl would be so far away, even if it was my soul that had experienced that.

 

I do believe that Moridin had Ishy´s soul... and that he is Ishy since the soul just moved from one body to the next, because he wasn´t reborn in the normal sense, but that is just my view on it.

 

In regards to my dreams. When I do tell people about things I dream about they look at me like I´m crazy lol. When I was in my most obsessed WoT-mode my dreams where truly awesome lol. I could have a lecture when a gateway opened and Logain demanded I come back to Randland cause disaster is about to struck and then Moridin shows up and then there is a badass fight. And I must say... I would make a kick-ass Green =P

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That's not the only quote though...

 

RJ's blog 4 October 2005 "ONE MORE TIME"

 

- Everybody fears death because the being that is reborn, while possessing the same soul, will not be the same person. The fear is simple. I will cease to exist. Someone else will exist, bearing my soul. But I will cease.

 

Interesting. That still makes sense within the parameters I described before. When a person normally dies they fear that death, even though their soul will be reborn, because when their soul is reborn, it will do so without their memories. This, I think, is the key point. Very, very, very few people in the Wheel of Time universe are reborn with the memories of a previous life. As far as I can tell it's only the Dragon, and anyone the Dark Lord transmigrates, and maybe a few other male channellers affected by the taint.

 

This quote by RJ doesn't conflict with what I said, because I agree that when a soul is reborn in a new body without its old memories, that is a new person. The old person has ceased to exist.....unless and until all of their memories are downloaded into this new person with their soul. At which point they become the same person. An unlikely event that has occurred only once as far as we know.

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That's not the only quote though...

 

RJ's blog 4 October 2005 "ONE MORE TIME"

 

- Everybody fears death because the being that is reborn, while possessing the same soul, will not be the same person. The fear is simple. I will cease to exist. Someone else will exist, bearing my soul. But I will cease.

 

Interesting. That still makes sense within the parameters I described before. When a person normally dies they fear that death, even though their soul will be reborn, because when their soul is reborn, it will do so without their memories. This, I think, is the key point. Very, very, very few people in the Wheel of Time universe are reborn with the memories of a previous life. As far as I can tell it's only the Dragon, and anyone the Dark Lord transmigrates, and maybe a few other male channellers affected by the taint.

 

 

This quote by RJ doesn't conflict with what I said, because I agree that when a soul is reborn in a new body without its old memories, that is a new person. The old person has ceased to exist.....unless and until all of their memories are downloaded into this new person with their soul. At which point they become the same person. An unlikely event that has occurred only once as far as we know.

 

 

Exactly. It´s the ego that is afraid because it thinks it will die but the soul will live on. Thus a person will fear death because he thinks that he will die, because he isn´t intune with what he is on a soul-level. If he knew what he was in a soul-level and understood that the person he is know is just a facet of his soul then I don´t think the people of Randland would be afraid. But this is just my view, and it doesn´t mean that RJ intended it to be like that.

 

On a personal note I do believe in reincarnation and us all having a soul so these ideas are not foreign to me, although my view on reincarnation and why we do it are prolly different.

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This quote by RJ doesn't conflict with what I said, because I agree that when a soul is reborn in a new body without its old memories, that is a new person. The old person has ceased to exist.....unless and until all of their memories are downloaded into this new person with their soul. At which point they become the same person. An unlikely event that has occurred only once as far as we know.

 

This.

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This quote by RJ doesn't conflict with what I said, because I agree that when a soul is reborn in a new body without its old memories, that is a new person. The old person has ceased to exist.....unless and until all of their memories are downloaded into this new person with their soul. At which point they become the same person. An unlikely event that has occurred only once as far as we know.

 

This.

 

But this is not what happened to Rand. And if you have a reborn person in a new body (Rand) with his traits and quirks and personality when all of LTT.s memories are downloaded into Rand he doesn´t become LTT. He is still Rand, with acces to his older memories from a diff life-time that is LTT. So they are not the same person. What would be the point? If they are the same person then Rand´s upbringing can´t mean squat.

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This quote by RJ doesn't conflict with what I said, because I agree that when a soul is reborn in a new body without its old memories, that is a new person. The old person has ceased to exist.....unless and until all of their memories are downloaded into this new person with their soul. At which point they become the same person. An unlikely event that has occurred only once as far as we know.

 

This.

 

But this is not what happened to Rand. And if you have a reborn person in a new body (Rand) with his traits and quirks and personality when all of LTT.s memories are downloaded into Rand he doesn´t become LTT. He is still Rand, with acces to his older memories from a diff life-time that is LTT. So they are not the same person. What would be the point? If they are the same person then Rand´s upbringing can´t mean squat.

 

With respect to the first part of what you were saying, I think the difference is just a question of wording. You say that Rand has access to older memories of LTT that he didn't before, so Rand Sedai is Rand with a few more memories. Others may say that LTT has access to newer memories of Rand that he didn't have before (and a not-so-shiny new body), so Rand Sedai is LTT with a few more memories. I think both approaches are accurate.

 

With respect to the part that I bolded, why does Rand and LTT being the same person imply that Rand's upbringing can't mean squat. Are you the same person as you were 20 years ago? You are, except you have 20 years of experience. To say that you are that same person doesn't mean that the last 20 years of your upbringing mean nothing. You're the same person with a more mature personality thanks to 20 years of learning and experience. Same with Rand.

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He's not acting like LTT. He's acting like Rand with the additional confidence and knowledge that having access to LTT's memories brings him. Yes, it effects his personality. Having that knowledge and memories will effect your feelings and how you view the world. Remembering Illeyna dying will make Rand sad, even guilty but it's only because he has access to those memories. It was still LTT's actions, not Rand al'Thor's. LTT had feelings for Lanfear/Mierin so now Rand has a soft spot for her because he can remember those feelings. But it was LTT that had a relationship with her, not Rand al'Thor. So yes, those memories will effect his view of the world and his feelings just like his own memories. It doesn't change the fact that the memories (and the actions that caused the memories) come from two very different, separate men. Blending them together results in a person that is not exactly like either man was before it happened. Doesn't change the fact that Rand and LTT were separate people. And since RJ has already said that Rand and LTT are different and that each rebirth of the soul is a new person, it seems silly to even have to have this debate.

We are having this debate because the above bolded part is questionable. Rand claims to be LTT. Rand claims LTT's mistakes as his own. Most people agree that Rand reached his epiphany because he accepted LTT's sins as his own.

 

It's fine if you think there is insufficient evidence to question what RJ said. But if your stance is that what RJ said can never be questioned, I'd point out the RJ has erred before.

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