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Rand's Death [journey through the underworld]


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My main question posed is this: What is Rand experiencing while he is dead? I know, we may get no insight into his thoughts while he's dead, but I think there is a good chance that he has to accomplish something meaningful while he is dead.


First, some set up: Not sure how much all of you compare the WoT to other Epic Fantasy, which then relates to ye olde Epic Poem. However, I don't think it is enough that Rand simply dies for a time, he must accomplish something while dead. Why? Well, mainly because when it comes to main Protagonist in an Epic Story, there is almost always a journey through the Underworld. Not just the main character dying and then resurrecting, but an actual journey through the Underworld. Starting from the Odyssey, then to the Aeneid, Dante's Inferno, and even little 'arry Potter all traveled through the underworld and accomplished something there. While Jordan has definitely taken a new twist on many aspects of the Epic Story, it still for the most part falls within the original blueprint set out by good old Homer.


Back to Rand's journey after a little literary analysis...


Given the weakness of the Pattern in general, and especially how weak it will be around Shayol Ghoul, I tend to think that Rand may accomplish some of his most influential actions while he is dead. The only problem I'm having is coming up with what exactly... Any ideas from the peanut gallery?

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Further thoughts: what was Rand doing for most of the three days he was away from Tear, between almost balefiring Tam and returning with a very new outlook on life? I can only account for about a day of that. He spent a night with the Tinkers outside Ebou Dar, went into the town, changed his mind about destroying the Seanchan, and Skimmed away, ending up on Dragonmount for an unknown number of hours. I can't believe he was up there for best part of three days, and I suspect from Perrin's experience that he wasn't (the wolves knew that the Last Hunt was coming and Perrin went immediately to investigate). So what about the rest of that time?


I notice that Rand is now talking about the DO as though he had a close encounter with It, and maintains contact: "All its eyes are fixed directly upon me." (ToM13) So how did that happen?

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