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23 Enormous Stars


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From Egwene's Dreem

An enormous sphere made of the finest crystal on a dark hilltop. It sparkles in the light of twenty-three enormous stars.

 

Now take 23 enormous stars, and then read Avienda's second passage through the pillars. As Ladalin, there is mention of the council of 22.

 

The others seemed absorbed in their thoughts. Three Clan Chiefs and two Wise Ones. They were all that remained of the council of Twenty-Two.

 

Is this a coincidence, or am I just off in never never land?

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From Egwene's Dreem

An enormous sphere made of the finest crystal on a dark hilltop. It sparkles in the light of twenty-three enormous stars.

 

Now take 23 enormous stars, and then read Avienda's second passage through the pillars. As Ladalin, there is mention of the council of 22.

 

The others seemed absorbed in their thoughts. Three Clan Chiefs and two Wise Ones. They were all that remained of the council of Twenty-Two.

 

Is this a coincidence, or am I just off in never never land?

 

I think 21 Sitters, one Keeper of the Chronicles and one Amyrlin fits her dream better.

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Correct me if i'm wrong, but aren't the stars surrounding a sphere of pure black, which rand then cracks open? Pretty clear sign of him breaking the seal...

 

I could be, and frequently am, wrong.

 

I think it's a shiny crystal sphere, i.e. white rather than black.

And what is the significance of 23 starts in connection to the seals?

 

Edit> looked up the quote. Defo not black.

 

“She saw an enormous sphere made of the finest crystal. It sparkled in the light of twenty-three enormous stars, shining down on it where it sat on a dark hilltop. There were cracks in it, and it was being held together by ropes There was Rand, walking up the hillside, holding a woodman's axe. He reached the top and hefted the axe, then swung at the ropes one at a time, chopping them free. The last one parted, and the sphere began to break apart, the beautiful globe falling in pieces. Rand shook his head.”
Edited by olver's grin
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It's interesting to note that the crystal sphere is breaking apart and needs ropes to physically hold it together. What else in the series has shown such fragility? The Dark One's prison? Maybe, but would the Dark One's prison be portrayed as a shining crystal globe? I don't think so. In this case I think Egwene has interpreted her dream incorrectly.

 

Could the sphere represent the Seanchan? A massive part of their society revolves around the Damane system, and the secret that Sul'Dam can also channel is very weakly held. If it were to become common knowledge I could see the Seanchan breaking apart and losing their unity, plus the metaphor of the Crystal Throne fits the crystal sphere. That just leaves the stars.

 

In any event, Rand is clearly going to deliberately set something into motion that results in the destruction of something else.

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My first impression is that the sphere represents the fragile sphere of the world, and the hilltop the shadow beneath.

The axe as simple expression of a task that must be performed, breaking the final ties that bind a broken world together. The ropes represent the ties of prophecy, the Seanchan are the final rope.

 

I'm guessing the stars represent the mortal (light-side) powers that be, though it seems less clear to me than the rest.

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I'm thinking that the brilliant crystal sphere represents either the White Tower, the Hall, or perhaps the institution of Aes Sedai in general. As mentioned earlier, I think that the 23 stars probably represents the Amyrlin, the Keeper, and the 21 sitters. The cracks represent all the fractures that exist in the tower, all the barriers and devisiveness that exists as a result of Eladia, and the ropes probably represent whatever alliances exist between the sitters and the rank and file of Aes Sedai that hold it together. Rand chopping the ropes probably represents him 'breaking all bonds', shattering these alliances and possibly ending the White Tower as an institution in the Fourth age.

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From Egwene's Dreem

An enormous sphere made of the finest crystal on a dark hilltop. It sparkles in the light of twenty-three enormous stars.

 

Now take 23 enormous stars, and then read Avienda's second passage through the pillars. As Ladalin, there is mention of the council of 22.

 

The others seemed absorbed in their thoughts. Three Clan Chiefs and two Wise Ones. They were all that remained of the council of Twenty-Two.

 

Is this a coincidence, or am I just off in never never land?

This has been my theory on this dream since before most people read the book. I think the ropes symbolize ji'e'toh which holds the Aiel together. Rand thoughtlessly cuts those ropes with his Peace. The Council of 22 plus the Dragon's Blood makes for the 23 stars. The crystal symbolizes the essence of the Aiel held in the crystal columns ter'angreal.

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I don't have an effective enough time-relevant recall on Egwene's dreams, but haven't they been strictly prophetic - of the future and not the past?

Pretty much, which would mean Rand breaking the Tower in earnest is still to come.

 

Terez is talking about the Aiel, not the Tower. Rand's supposed to save a remnant of a remnant, but there's no remnant hinted at in the dream, nor any kind of salvation. A cutting of bonds, and complete destruction?

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From Egwene's Dreem

An enormous sphere made of the finest crystal on a dark hilltop. It sparkles in the light of twenty-three enormous stars.

 

Now take 23 enormous stars, and then read Avienda's second passage through the pillars. As Ladalin, there is mention of the council of 22.

 

The others seemed absorbed in their thoughts. Three Clan Chiefs and two Wise Ones. They were all that remained of the council of Twenty-Two.

 

Is this a coincidence, or am I just off in never never land?

This has been my theory on this dream since before most people read the book. I think the ropes symbolize ji'e'toh which holds the Aiel together. Rand thoughtlessly cuts those ropes with his Peace. The Council of 22 plus the Dragon's Blood makes for the 23 stars. The crystal symbolizes the essence of the Aiel held in the crystal columns ter'angreal.

 

Rand's actions don't seem thoughtless to me. He deliberately cuts the ropes around the sphere, bringing an axe specifically for the task. He shakes his head afterwards, indicating he regrets what he has done, meaning he had to have knowledge of how his actions would break the sphere. He broke the sphere knowingly and on purpose. Peace being symbolised by an axe also seems a bit off, even if it is a woodsman's axe.

Edited by SuperFade
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Correct me if i'm wrong, but aren't the stars surrounding a sphere of pure black, which rand then cracks open? Pretty clear sign of him breaking the seal...

 

I could be, and frequently am, wrong.

 

I think it's a shiny crystal sphere, i.e. white rather than black.

And what is the significance of 23 starts in connection to the seals?

 

Edit> looked up the quote. Defo not black.

 

“She saw an enormous sphere made of the finest crystal. It sparkled in the light of twenty-three enormous stars, shining down on it where it sat on a dark hilltop. There were cracks in it, and it was being held together by ropes There was Rand, walking up the hillside, holding a woodman's axe. He reached the top and hefted the axe, then swung at the ropes one at a time, chopping them free. The last one parted, and the sphere began to break apart, the beautiful globe falling in pieces. Rand shook his head.”

 

Hmm...maybe it is the Aiel then, but when I first read it I had the strong impression that this was a Dreaming/whatever of the breaking of the seals.

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Correct me if i'm wrong, but aren't the stars surrounding a sphere of pure black, which rand then cracks open? Pretty clear sign of him breaking the seal...

 

I could be, and frequently am, wrong.

 

I think it's a shiny crystal sphere, i.e. white rather than black.

And what is the significance of 23 starts in connection to the seals?

 

Edit> looked up the quote. Defo not black.

 

“She saw an enormous sphere made of the finest crystal. It sparkled in the light of twenty-three enormous stars, shining down on it where it sat on a dark hilltop. There were cracks in it, and it was being held together by ropes There was Rand, walking up the hillside, holding a woodman's axe. He reached the top and hefted the axe, then swung at the ropes one at a time, chopping them free. The last one parted, and the sphere began to break apart, the beautiful globe falling in pieces. Rand shook his head.”

 

Hmm...maybe it is the Aiel then, but when I first read it I had the strong impression that this was a Dreaming/whatever of the breaking of the seals.

 

Egwene thought that it was when Rand told her about breaking the seals. Of course it could easily be (and most likely is) a red herring.

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How many distinct groups are gathered at the FoM to watch Rand break the remaining seals? As many as 23?

 

We have:

 

Perrin

Alliandre of Ghealdan

Berelain of Mayene

Darlin of Tear

Gregorin of Illian

 

Egwene

Elayne of Andor and Cairhein

TalmanesSomeone of the Red Hand

 

Tenobia of Saldaea

Ethenielle of Kandor

Paitar of Arafel

Easar of Shienar

 

Aiel - 11 clans?

 

Almen Bunt and the farmers

 

Galad of the Whitecloaks

 

Unfortunately that's 25.. but I'm not sure about the Aiel. Will recheck.

 

Edited: Talmanes was last seen at Caemlyn, reading Verin's letter.

 

 

ETA: As of KoD18, the Taardad and the Goshien were in Arad Doman. In TGS7, Rand orders Rhuarc and Bael to find members of the Council of Merchants and hold them so they can elect a new king. Rand visited Arad Doman in ToM 25 to begin a cleanup. The Aiel may still be there, supervising. If so, that makes 9 Aiel clans at the FoM - 23 groups total.

Edited by FarShainMael
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As an alternative, it might not be the last ropes holding the Tower together that Rand is cutting, but rather the last bonds of control that the Tower has over the world. They've built a series of alliances, treaties, and personal relationships with rulers over the centuries. If that beautiful sphere is the world as constructed by Aes Sedai, then I can totally see Rand shattering that at the FOM. A world where every nation turns its back on the White Tower and supports Rand's plan to break the Seals and then strike at Shayol Ghul. That's be shattering.

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I don't see the stars representing single people, but an entire (separate and identifiable) peoples, particularly those on the side of the Light. I am inclined to speculate the following as the "enormous stars" watching over Rand severing the last tie that held the world as it was, the world he subjected to a second Breaking. The last tie that must be severed is that of the Seanchan armies.

 

1 ~ People of the Dragon (Rand)

2 ~ Dragonsworn (Rand)

3 ~ Seandar (Tuon)

4 ~ New Manetheren (Perrin)

5 ~ Band of the Red Hand (Mat)

6 ~ Ghealdan (Alliandre)

7 ~ Mayene (Berelain)

8 ~ Tear (Darlin)

9 ~ Illian (Gregorin)

10 ~ White Tower (Gawyn/Bryne)

11 ~ Black Tower (Logain)

12 ~ Whitecloaks (Galad)

13 ~ Saldaea (Tenobia)

14 ~ Kandor (Ethenielle)

15 ~ Arafel (Paitar)

16 ~ Sheinar (Easar)

17 ~ Sun Throne of Cairhein/Andor (Elayne)

18 ~ Atha'an Miere (Mistress of the Ships)

19 ~ Arad Doman (Merchant-Elect)

20 - Malkier (Lan)

21 - Tarabon (Ituralde)

22 ~ Ogier (Loial)

23 ~ Wolfbrothers (Elyas/Perrin)

 

I'm kinda iffy on the last one, as I feel like there's a nation or critical army that I'm missing, but it seems like the wolves would have some sort of representation in the Last Hunt.

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It's interesting that Rand does not destroy the globe directly, but cuts apart the ropes binding it together. Whatever the globe represents, it was already fragile and crumbling, but something is holding it together (Represented by the ropes). What could the ropes represent?

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It's interesting that Rand does not destroy the globe directly, but cuts apart the ropes binding it together. Whatever the globe represents, it was already fragile and crumbling, but something is holding it together (Represented by the ropes). What could the ropes represent?

and he shall break the world again by his coming,

tearing apart all ties that bind.

 

Seems to me that he's finishing the job he started - the world was already broken by his coming, and in the days to come, he will sever the last of the ties that held it together. Once his blood has been shed upon the rocks of Shayol Ghul, the day will dawn a second time on the birth of a new world.

Twice dawns the day when his blood is shed.

Once for mourning, once for birth.

Edited by Eht Slat Meit
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