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HunterShaw

A question concerning Aes Sedai and Damane

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Someone has probably asked this beafore, but here it goes.

 

Aes Sedai take the three oaths. Aes Sedai damane will not tell lies even under torture. So how do they get them to kill people? The Aes Sedai take the oath not to use the Power as a weapon except against shadowspawn or in the last defence of their life or the life of their Warder. Not to prevent themselves pain.

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Per Robert Jordan:

 

The Aes Sedai captured by the Seanchan are indeed useless as weapons, except against Shadowspawn or Darkfriends, because they are bound by the Three Oaths, and that limits their value considerably since being weapons is a major use for damane. Damane are used for other tasks, however, including finding ores for mining, for some mining operations where it would be too dangerous or uneconomical to use human miners, and in some construction projects, especially where something very large or with a need for added strength is envisioned. The first two both require a high ability in Earth, which has faded considerably on "this" side of the Aryth Ocean and to a smaller degree of the other side, but construction projects and others things, such as producing Sky Lights, are well within the abilities of collared Aes Sedai. The Three Oaths don't inhibit them there at all.

 

So, they cannot be forced to use the Power as a weapon in any new circumstances, just because they are now damane. A good example is Mylen, formerly Sheraine Aes Sedai. Read Furyk Karede's POV in Under an Oak, chapter 36 of Knife of Dreams.

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(edit) I see that Robert was posting at the same time as was... Anyway here are the important parts of Karede's POV

 

He had considered using another damane than Mylen. The tiny woman with the face he could never put an age to almost bounced in her saddle with eagerness to lay eyes on the High Lady again. She was not properly composed. Still, she could do nothing without Melitene, and she was useless as a weapon, a fact that had made her hang her head when he had pointed it out to the der'sul'dam...

 

- Knife of Dreams, Under an Oak p. 728

 

We later find out just exactly who Mylen the damane had been as an Aes Sedai through a conversation between Joline, Teslyn and Edesina:

 

"That's Sheraine!" the pretty woman cried, staring at Mylen. "Release her!"

"You do not understand, Joline,"... "She do no be Sheraine any longer. She would have betrayed us, given a chance."

"Teslyn is is right Joline"..."She would have betrayed us."

 

- Knife of Dreams, Under an Oak p. 731

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Hmm guess I just missed all of those when I read it Kniufe of dream the first and second time. Maybe I'll do some research the next time I have a question.

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They can use the power if their lives are threatened, and if broken they could possibly be molded to think that they are always threatened.

 

I don't know if that would work, but good question.

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One could argue that enjoying being a slave is insane and some of them seem to be doing just that. I can not understand what would make someone, anyone, but especially someone who had one been AS enjoy being held captive. Is this supposed to be some sort of Stockholm Syndrome? I just can not fathom it.

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They can use the power if their lives are threatened, and if broken they could possibly be molded to think that they are always threatened. - Diefett

 

 

If they were pushed to that extreme level of paranoia, I doubt that they would remain sane. - RobertAlexWillis

 

-----------------------------

 

I would agree with you if not for what happened in KoD, When Egwene saw (sorry I am re-reading the series and forgot the name) the Aes Sedai who had sworn fealty to her in the Little Tower, in the White Tower, she had broken her oath by basically telling herself that Egwene wasn't the real Amyrilin. It appears the three oaths, and even fealty can be changed through strong belief that something has changed.

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I view those two conclusions (ie, the conclusion that Egwene had been captured and was therefore no longer Amyrlin, and the conclusion that "I am always in danger of my life") to be qualitatively different. It is not necessarily the process of making them think that they are always in danger that would drive them mad, in my opinion, it is the experience of living when you ALWAYS believe you are in mortal danger. You will also notice that it was relatively easy for Egwene to destroy Beonin's rationalization, and bring her into service again.

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The oaths are subject to interpretation, but the belief that fealty owed Egwene as Amyrlin was no longer apllicable in a situation where she might not be viewed as Amyrlin is very different to the oath about using the one power as a weapon.

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