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eroes of the Horn and the Dark One

by Ozymandias: 2006-01-05 | 1.25 out of 10 (8 votes)

Recent Categories: The Dark One

The Dark One’s control over dead souls is absolute. When Ishamael, as Ba’alzamon, appears to Rand in the Eye of the World, he claims he has total dominance over the dead.

“You will dance upon Aes Sedai strings until you die. And then you will be mine. The dead belong to me!” (tEotW, The Stag and the Lion)

“It matters little whether I have you alive or dead, except to you, and what power you might have. You will serve me, or your soul will” (tEotW, Against the Shadow)

Now Ishamael is obviously not the most trustworthy of sources. And of course, Ishamael does go to great lengths to keep Rand alive for no real benefit of his own. I mean, the Dark One wants Rand because he wants his power, but Ishamael must know that turning the Dragon means giving up his own status as most powerful/most favored disciple of the Dark One in favor of the new Nae’blis; Rand. So that would imply that the Dark One has some specific reason for wanting to keep Rand alive, because otherwise you just kill him, get him out of the way, and that’s that.

But on the other hand, Ishamael’s madness accounts for this, as the other Chosen seem to think that Ishamael believed he WAS the Dark One by the time he died. And given his weird notions about balance and the struggle between good and evil, there may have been other motives. The point is, I think it is safe to say that the Dark One does have control over dead souls. This is reinforced by and episode with Kari al’ Thor.

TITLE: Eye of the World, CHAPTER: 51 - Against the Shadow

His mother's lips trembled. Tears trickled down her cheeks; each one burned him like acid. "The Lord of the Grave is stronger than he once was, my son," she said. "His reach is longer. The Father of Lies has a honeyed tongue for unwary souls. My son. My only, darling son. I would spare you if I could, but he is my master, now, his whim, the law of my existence. I can but obey him, and grovel for his favor. Only you can free me. Please, my son. Please help me. Help me. Help me! PLEASE!"

We see that the Lord of the Grave can in fact control dead souls. Now, I would say this was all illusion, but Kari al’ Thor spends a great deal of time warning her son not to believe Ishamael, on almost everything but that one point. She denies everything he says except that he controls her. Now, some will say this is also illusion, just well crafted, but at some point we have to abandon skepticism and admit that she must be under his control.

TITLE: Eye of the World CHAPTER: 41 - Old Friends, and New Threats

"What do you think to gain, for yourself or anyone else, by dying?" the Aes Sedai asked. Her voice was level, yet sharp. "If the Lord of the Grave has gained as much freedom to touch the Pattern as I fear, he can reach you dead more easily than alive, now. Dead, you can help no one, not the people who have helped you, not your friends and family back in the Two Rivers. The Shadow is falling over the world, and none of you can stop it dead."

TITLE: Dragon Reborn CHAPTER: 51 - Bait for the Net

"No!" Liandrin's short, honey-colored braids swung as her head snapped around. "Always you kill too quickly, and only the Great Lord can make use of the dead." She smiled at the woman held to the chair by invisible bonds. "You saw the soldiers who came with us, old woman. You know who waits for us in the Stone. The High Lord Samon, he will not be pleased if you speak of what happened inside your house today. If you hold your tongue, you will live, perhaps to serve him again one day. If you speak, you will serve only the Great Lord of the Dark, from beyond the grave. Which do you choose?"

Here we have yet more evidence of the widespread knowledge that the Dark One can control dead souls, and beyond that, that his control of said souls is absolute. He can twist the dead to serve him in whatever capacity he so chooses, even to the point of putting them in new bodies. There are, however, two exceptions to this almost universal rule that need to be explored.

One of course is balefire. The Dark One himself admits he cannot control balefired souls. The other exception is, of course, Heroes of the Horn. The idea that walking in the Light is enough to grant you immunity is obviously superstition meant to reassure people. But being a Hero of the Horn brings up interesting ideas. For one, it shows that the Wheel is more powerful than the Dark One, since the Wheel has the power to withhold souls from the Dark One in order to maintain them as corrective devices. The Dark One has no such similar measures. This lack of control on the part of the Dark One, to me, implies that the Heroes do not only have their souls withheld from death in some way, but that they’re totally separate from the Pattern in general. Here is the reasoning.

We know that a man’s life has a thread. That thread is woven into the Pattern, and then when he dies, it is cut short and ends. This system, which is, without a doubt, the system, cannot work with Heroes of the Horn. Heroes of the Horn are souls which we’re so dedicated to some ideal (how they’re chosen is irrelevant for this), that when their life ended, they were saved from the Dark One’s influence (thereby keeping such important “corrective devices” out of the hands of the Dark One). So now we have one soul, which we know can only have one thread, which is hovering outside the Pattern. In theory, this soul CANNOT re-enter the Pattern, because it already has a thread, and one cannot just take a thread, snip it off, and then start it again a little later. It just doesn’t work like that. Neither can their thread have been continuous throughout; since we know that they DID die at some point. So what, we ask ourselves, is happening with these Heroes of the Horn.

Heroes of the Horn actually possess other bodies, and dislodge the soul held therein. Thereby, the Dark One gets his soul once that thread is over with, and the whole one-soul one-thread principle remains inviolate. Upon death of the body, the soul of the Hero returns to wherever it goes to await its next host. This way the Wheel is free to recycle its Heroes without giving them over to the absolute control the Dark Once exercises over souls.

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Comments

1

Tamyrlin: 2006-02-11

Ah, Ozy, yet another thing we disagree about. :) The Dark One's control, obviously, as per your theory, does not have absolute control. You introduced two caveat's, which in and of themselves, help defeat your theory. Beyond the other reasons your theory is incorrect, let's address balefire. Why can't the DO control balefired souls? We know balefired souls are not destroyed, so where do they go? Why can't the DO control souls of those who are balefired? Because the DO's "control" is very limited, that's why. In fact, much more limited than you are accepting. You are suggesting that the DO has instant access to souls that not only die, but died years and/or centuries ago. Where exactly do you imagine these souls reside from the time they die to the time they are reborn? And why is this place different from where the souls of those balefired await rebirth? If the DO controlled the dead, and had instant access to their souls, we would see a huge amount of transmigration. If he had that power, there is no reason why he wouldn't create his own army of transmigrated channelers, and turn them all to become his slaves. He would have ruled this world a long time ago. Instead, he has had to trust in the stupidities of his human surrogates, the Forsaken, which is why he hasn't won. Nothing in the books proves that the DO has the type of unfettered access to the dead as you suggest. And finally, as for Kari, when you create an illusion in T'A'R, it takes on a life of its own, as Kari did. (Btw - How did Kari recognize Rand? Heroes of the Horn called him Lews Therin?).

2

Traveller: 2006-02-11

In reply to Tamyrlin, I do belive that Kari al'Thor was not an illusion (the fact that she shouldn't really be able to recognise him could be Jordan's mistake, or perhaps Ba'alzamon has shown him to her to question her about his birth etc), but other than that, I agree with what Tam says about the DO having limited control. Anyway, let me explain myself:

I believe that Kari al'Thor was actually held back by the DO because if she was simply an illusion, why would Ba'alzamon make her go:

"From the midst of the brilliance, he heard a whisper. 'Thank you, my son. The Light. The blessed Light.'"

She said this after Rand burned the myrdraal torturing her, then Ba'alzamon got real angry. From this, I believe that:

a) The DO CAN control some souls and it was not simply an illusion;

b) The DO's control is limited and can be broken.

Also, I do not agree with what I think Ozymandias is saying at the end:

"Heroes of the Horn actually possess other bodies, and dislodge the soul held therein. Thereby, the Dark One gets his soul once that thread is over with, and the whole one-soul one-thread principle remains inviolate."

I don't accept that, as it were, the Heroes of the Horn just shove the other soul out of the body to feed the DO and control the body- it doesn't seem right. I am more agreed to the idea that since they are bound to the Wheel (just visualise it) their souls cannot be taken by the DO. When other people die, they are not boun, so their souls can be taken.

3

Tamyrlin: 2006-02-11

Traveller, why would killing two myrrdraal free Kari Al'Thor from the DO's grasp? Is it that easy? Can two myrrdraal hold someone in T'A'R, but if they get killed, that soul gets to go free? As I said, T'A'R is controlled by will. What Rand saw is what he wanted to see. He took over the illusion that Ishamael created, he forced it to give him what he wanted in that moment, which was to see his mother safe. She wasn't actually there. In fact, it would be impossible for Rand to recognize her as his mother, for her to recognize him, and for Ishamael to grasp a soul. The DO holds souls, not Ishamael. And, why would the DO have Kari's soul anyway? If he knew she was the mother of the DR, he would have found Rand long ago. He didn't. The idea that he randomly grabbed her soul doesn't work. But if you look at it as a pure illusion it makes perfect sense. Ishamael wants Rand to turn. Ishamael brings Rand into T'A'R. Ishamael creates illusion of dead mother suffering at the hands of Ba'alzamon in order to convince him to give over to the Dark One. Rand asserts control over the illusion, by convincing himself that he has freed her from the DO by killing myrrdraal (or whatever was holding her). It all fits when you consider what we know from later books about who was there and where they were and how T'A'R functions.

4

Callandor: 2006-02-11

**We see that the Lord of the Grave can in fact control dead souls. Now, I would say this was all illusion, but Kari al’ Thor spends a great deal of time warning her son not to believe Ishamael, on almost everything but that one point. She denies everything he says except that he controls her. Now, some will say this is also illusion, just well crafted, but at some point we have to abandon skepticism and admit that she must be under his control.**

Again, not at all. Have to remember where this is happening: tel'aran'rhiod. And what is Ishamael's motives at this point? To convert Rand to the Shadow. One major way to do that is to show that he has no option other than it, or he can get a benefit for going to the Shadow (he did the same thing with Lews Therin).

So, in tel'aran'rhiod, Ishamael creates this illusion for the sole purpose of convincing Rand to join the Shadow. How does this explain Kari's reactions? Because of a property of tel'aran'rhiod, and illusions:

**TITLE: Fires of Heaven, CHAPTER: 49 - To Boannda

Creating fantastical flowers or shapes by thinking of them was much more fun. The effort involved seemed related to both how large the thing was and whether it might really exist. Trees covered with wildly shaped blossoms in red and gold and purple were harder to make than a stand-mirror to examine what you had done to your dress, or what the other woman had done to it. A gleaming crystal palace rising out of the ground was harder still, and even if felt solid to the touch, it changed whenever the image in your mind wavered and vanished as soon as the image did. They quietly decided to leave animals alone after a peculiar thing--much like a horse with a horn on its nose!--chased them both up a hill before they could make it vanish. That very nearly sparked a new argument, with each of them claiming the other had made it, but by that time Elayne had recovered enough of her old self to start giggling over how they must have looked, racing up the hill with their skirts hauled up, shouting at the thing to go away. Even Elayne's stubborn refusal to admit it had been her fault could not stop Nynaeve's giggles from bubbling up, too.**

Animals and things with a mind of their own that are created in tel'aran'rhiod, use that mind of their own if control slips. This is very important to note, because what happens to Ishamael? He get's attacked, and loses control of the illusion.

**Here we have yet more evidence of the widespread knowledge that the Dark One can control dead souls, and beyond that, that his control of said souls is absolute.**

Except actions speak louder than words, and all the cases we've seen of the Dark One controlling the dead, are those that have sworn to him.

**One of course is balefire. The Dark One himself admits he cannot control balefired souls.**

No, he does not. He does not say he can't control the souls; he says that he can't step out of time to get them.

**For one, it shows that the Wheel is more powerful than the Dark One, since the Wheel has the power to withhold souls from the Dark One in order to maintain them as corrective devices.**

Or, it's to show that the Dark One truely has control of only those who have given their souls to him, and the rest is exaggerated fluff.

**We know that a man’s life has a thread. That thread is woven into the Pattern, and then when he dies, it is cut short and ends. This system, which is, without a doubt, the system, cannot work with Heroes of the Horn.**

And how is that?

**Heroes of the Horn are souls which we’re so dedicated to some ideal (how they’re chosen is irrelevant for this), that when their life ended, they were saved from the Dark One’s influence (thereby keeping such important “corrective devices” out of the hands of the Dark One). So now we have one soul, which we know can only have one thread, which is hovering outside the Pattern. In theory, this soul CANNOT re-enter the Pattern, because it already has a thread, and one cannot just take a thread, snip it off, and then start it again a little later. It just doesn’t work like that. Neither can their thread have been continuous throughout; since we know that they DID die at some point. So what, we ask ourselves, is happening with these Heroes of the Horn.**

OR

The Dark One's control is limited to those who have given their souls to him.

You're taking word of mouth and applying it to situations where we know work and changing fundamentals of the world needlessly.

The Wheel takes a soul and puts it into a body. This union makes a thread, and the thread and it's actions throughout that person's life are what make up the Pattern (overall it's the totality of threads and actions). When a person dies, the thread ends, and the soul returns to await rebirth.

This is the exact same mechanism for Heroes of the Horn as it is for anyone else.

Their souls are taken by the Dark One, and put into a body to make a thread. No difference, except that where normal souls go is a "normal afterlife" according to Jordan, while Heroes of the Horn reside in tel'aran'rhiod.

Here's a thought experiment to prove this basically incorrect.

Say the Dark One can control any soul he wants. He can take that soul, put into a body, and voila, transmigration. Alright then, given our assumptions nothing wrong with this. You say Heroes can't be taken, so, ok let's accept that. What's left? Namely, every single channeling soul in existance (minus the Dragon soul). That's a lot.

So, the Dark One takes all those channeling souls, transmigrates every single one of them, and mindtraps them. Now what? He has an army of channelers unseen in the world to do only his bidding in the hands of those whom he trusts most.

How does the Light win that conflict?

It opens far too many options to allow the Dark One to transmigrate anyone he wants, to any degree. It only follows that his control is severely limited or, the Dark One is an inept moron who can't decide how he wants to go about winning this world.

(And blast you Tam for stealing my created examples ;)).

5

tworiverswoman: 2006-02-11

Yeah, I gotta disagree with this theory – if I can even pick out the actual theory, that is. The DO has access to some souls, agreed. But I am not of the opinion that he has “unlimited” access, even disregarding the problems caused by balefire, the Horn of Valere, and (presumably) Mashadar and Machin Shin.

I don’t know if that was the soul of Kari Al’Thor – but I am inclined to doubt it, because, as Tam points out, if he had “collected” Kari’s soul for later use, it would have had to be when she died – 18-19 years before. He has admitted that he cannot step out of time so he can’t just reach randomly into the soul pool and snag a soul that died a long time ago – he has to snatch it at the moment of death. And if he had known, 18-19 years ago, that Kari Al’Thor was the mother of the Dragon Reborn, Rand would never have gotten any older. At least, not in the Two Rivers. And Padan Fain wouldn’t have been necessary.

The fact that Moiraine and Liandrin both apparently believe the Dark One has control over all the dead is fairly meaningless. We already know that some of what they believe is false. In my opinion, this is just another “omnipotent” myth about the DO that has been placed in the “everyone knows” category to help perpetuate the emotional climate he needs to regain his foothold in the world.

Being a Hero of the Horn does not confer invulnerability upon the heroes – look what happened to Birgitte. And we know Slayer roams TAR with impunity. He kills wolves for fun – Birgitte seems to treat him with caution, too. The life thread of a Hero is cut at their death, like everyone else’s – the soul is NOT dropped into the soul pool, but placed in TAR to await rebirth. The soul is attached to a new life when it becomes a viable fetus (according to RJ’s interview provided by Callandor in another theory), the memories are stored in a hidden file (so to speak) and the hero is reborn, as an apparently ordinary mortal.

The idea that they would “supplant” the original soul targeted for the fetus is repugnant and unnecessary. You said, “and one cannot just take a thread, snip it off, and then start it again a little later. It just doesn’t work like that.” You seem to be equating souls with life threads – I think this is your error. They are separate concepts. When Birgitte was “ripped from TAR” and thrown into the real world, I am convinced the reason she nearly died was because no “life thread” existed for her, until Elayne bonded her, and gave her a connection to the Pattern, which she was lacking. I have no validation for this, but it seems to fit the facts as they were presented to us.

6

Traveller: 2006-02-12

Tam:

We don't know that all Rand did was killing the myrdraal, I was just using that because we don't know exactly what he did:

"Rand's scream echoed hers. The void boiled inside his mind. His sword was in his hand. Not the heron-mark blade, but a blade of light, a blade of Light. Even as he raised it, a fiery white bolt shot out from the point, as if the blade itself had reached out. It touched the nearest Fade, and blinding canescence filled the chamber, shining through the Halfmen like a candle through paper, burning through them, blinding his eyes to the scene."

We know he did more than just kill the myrdraal the light touched, because all of them disappeared, and anyway, who is to say that killing/destroying the Fades holding Kari would not free her? Perhaps, souls are guarded by myrdraal, and destroying them destroys the chain holding them to the DO.

7

Callandor: 2006-02-12

**We know he did more than just kill the myrdraal the light touched, because all of them disappeared, and anyway, who is to say that killing/destroying the Fades holding Kari would not free her? Perhaps, souls are guarded by myrdraal, and destroying them destroys the chain holding them to the DO.**

MYRDDRAALS are the guardians of souls?

Rand was in tel'aran'rhiod. It's easy to change what can be seen as impossible there, and Rand was trying to be influenced very hard by Ishamael.

It was an Illusion, people.

The Dark One has not transmigrated any soul that has not been given to him to our knowledge. At all. Even if by some miraculous chance it was truely Kari's soul, it was Ishamael that somehow controlled it not the Dark One.

8

ladof: 2006-02-13

umm... I can't remember where it was, but the Dark One him/herself admitted to not having ABSOLUTE control over souls. The quote was from after Rahvin had died. It went something like...

"Remember Rahvin, destroyed by balefire, who is now past even my grasp"

Probably shouldn't have put that in quotes, but you get the idea. It might have been the convo between the DO and Demandrid to start LoC, but don't quote me on that either.

9

Lord of the Dawn: 2006-02-13

Yeah, I'm going to have to agree with everyone else here. But something to be taken into consideration is: would the DO have more control over souls were he free of his prison? The prison might be limiting his powers.

Even take for example balefire. The DO said to Demandred that Rahvin is beyond his reach, but could that reach be imposed by the prison? The DO has never been free of his prison, all that "imprisoned at the moment of Creation" thing so he might not know the full extent of his powers free from his prison.

Ok, I'm ranting now and this wouldn't really have any effect on the story line were it true.

10

ladof: 2006-02-13

Okay, I'm with my books now, and found the relevent data.

LoC Prologue "The First Message" Page 15 - 16

"The Chosen dwindle, Demandred. The weak fall away. Who betrays me shall die the final death. Asmodean, twisted by his weakness. Rahvin dead in his pride. He served well, YET EVEN I CANNOT SAVE HIM FROM BALEFIRE. EVEN I CANNOT STEP OUTSIDE OF TIME. For an instant terrible anger filled that awful voice, and - could it be frustration?"

So the DO cannot revive souls long dead. Its a time thing. How long someone is dead is directly related to whether or not the DO can 'revive' them.

11

Ozymandias: 2006-02-15

There were a lot of points made here, and I probably can't address them all, and quoting it all would take forever and be a pain in the *@! besides, so I'll just address some of the salient points that stood out. Firstly, about "dislodging" another soul from a body. This doesn't have to happen. A body can be created specifically for the purpose of the reborn Hero. All I'm saying is that their souls are inviolate from the Dark One's control. They don't have to come in and push another soul out of a body, so get that notion out of your head (tworiverswoman seemed particularly vehement about that).

Secondly, Callandor, you seem to imply at one point that there are a finite number of souls in the world. That just can't be. I don't even think explanation of that point is necessary, since it brings up tons of problems with population growth. I mean, I suppose the number could be SO huge that there is no way it could ever be used up, but still... who knows? I just don't think the Creater walked on by, created the world, and then said "I'm going to put ____ souls in the waiting line to be born for this world and never let any more come to be". I mean, I guess this is a matter of opinion, in the end, but I think each body (excepting Heroes) gets a new soul.

And your theory about transmigration and creating an army of channelers doesn't seem to fly with my theory. At least I don't see it as such. Firstly, if this were true, the Dark One could bring all the channellers that exist right now and mindtrap them. So obviously there is some element of giving up free will to the DO involved in that process, because there is no reason the DO hasn't mindtrapped all dark sisters, and then capture isolated sisters one at a time and convert them. So I think the mindtrap has some sort of stipulation where hte previous utter obedience of the subject is required. I think the Dark One COULD ressurect every dead soul... he just has no point, and he needs a body to do it. Thats the difference, the Wheel can create from scratch while the Dark One can only taint and twist already created being. I have to run, so I'll get back later, but have fun with that!

12

Saidar Haran: 2006-02-16

Well, I don't have my books right now, but I recall that when Moghedien is first mindtrapped, she thinks/screams something about bringing some of the Counselors (?) of her Age to the bore to get mindrapped. It seems unlikely that all of these had previously sworn wholly to the DO.

13

jason wolfbrother: 2006-02-16

**Secondly, Callandor, you seem to imply at one point that there are a finite number of souls in the world. That just can't be. I don't even think explanation of that point is necessary, since it brings up tons of problems with population growth. I mean, I suppose the number could be SO huge that there is no way it could ever be used up, but still... who knows? I just don't think the Creater walked on by, created the world, and then said "I'm going to put ____ souls in the waiting line to be born for this world and never let any more come to be". I mean, I guess this is a matter of opinion, in the end, but I think each body (excepting Heroes) gets a new soul. **

I'm not Callandor but I can tell you what he is going to say. You are wrong. There is a finite number of souls. When someone dies there body decomposes and their soul returns to the soul pool to await rebirth. Everyone is a rebirth of someone else. Heroes are special because they are tied to the Wheel and spun out at specific times. Everyone else is simply lucky enough to live again and again and again.

14

Callandor: 2006-02-16

**But something to be taken into consideration is: would the DO have more control over souls were he free of his prison? The prison might be limiting his powers.**

Since it would seem that the Dark One has the ability to completely change how the Wheel works if he gets free, or destroy it, I'd have to say it's a resounding "yes" ;)

**The DO said to Demandred that Rahvin is beyond his reach, but could that reach be imposed by the prison?**

It could possibly be, but Rahvin's situation, and that of any balefired Forsaken, seems to be because they were balefired only. They've already been dead for a while when the Dark One get's knowledge that they've died, so he can't grab their souls. It's outside his window of working (even if the Dark One is not subject to time himself, which it seems he is not, he is still trying to help his people who are subject to time and has to work within that window). If he was free, I don't doubt he could probably have an easier time of handling balefired souls, but the question then becomes why does he need to do it anyway?

**Firstly, about "dislodging" another soul from a body. This doesn't have to happen. A body can be created specifically for the purpose of the reborn Hero. All I'm saying is that their souls are inviolate from the Dark One's control. They don't have to come in and push another soul out of a body, so get that notion out of your head (tworiverswoman seemed particularly vehement about that).**

So, they would be a soul for that some time, and since according to you the Dark One can control all souls how does this make them invulnerable to his powers?

They die, their souls await rebirth -- even if it's only for a split second -- and then are reborn. The Dark One still has a window to work with, and could take their souls.

Much easier if he simply cannot control all souls.

**Secondly, Callandor, you seem to imply at one point that there are a finite number of souls in the world.**

Yep.

**That just can't be. I don't even think explanation of that point is necessary, since it brings up tons of problems with population growth.**

How is it that it "just can't be?"

**I mean, I suppose the number could be SO huge that there is no way it could ever be used up, but still... who knows? I just don't think the Creater walked on by, created the world, and then said "I'm going to put ____ souls in the waiting line to be born for this world and never let any more come to be". I mean, I guess this is a matter of opinion, in the end, but I think each body (excepting Heroes) gets a new soul.**

A new soul? What the heck are you talking about?

Souls are reborn. Just like the One Power is finite and always recycled (thanks to Jordan for finally answering that question), there are a finite number of souls always reborn.

Not all of them are reborn at once; let alone is every soul reborn in the world now. There possibly could be examples, say in the Age of Legends, that the population was high enough that all the souls were reborn at one time -- or it simply could be that there always are souls awaiting rebirth with the constant dying and birth of humans. Everyday people die and are born all over the world.

I don't see the problem you seem to be making of finite number of souls. If there was an infinte number of new souls, I'd be more shocked than anything since it negates the point of having a world based on rebirth.

**Firstly, if this were true, the Dark One could bring all the channellers that exist right now and mindtrap them.**

Yes, he could. But, he hasn't. And why do you suppose that is? He just doesn't "feel" like it? Or -- because he cannot control all the souls in existance?

**So obviously there is some element of giving up free will to the DO involved in that process, because there is no reason the DO hasn't mindtrapped all dark sisters, and then capture isolated sisters one at a time and convert them.**

More likely because he simply views he could do things better in other ways based on his limitations of this world. Again, if he could control all souls, if he could have that great a power at his hands, this series would be over and done with in 15 minutes.

**So I think the mindtrap has some sort of stipulation where hte previous utter obedience of the subject is required.**

Uh, no.

**TITLE: Crown of Swords, CHAPTER: 25 - Mindtrap

In those stunned moments, the Myrddraal forced her mouth open, scraped the blade along her tongue, then nicked her ear. And as it straightened with her blood and saliva, she knew, even before it produced what appeared to be a tiny, fragile cage of gold wire and crystal. Some things could only be done here, some only to those who could channel, and she had brought a number of men and women for this very purpose.

...

He reached into the open neck of his shirt, and her own tongue clove to the roof of her mouth. Her eyes fixed on the small cage of gold wire and blood-red crystal that he drew out dangling on a cord. She thought vaguely that he tucked another just like it back in, but she had eyes only for her own. It definitely was hers. His thumb stroked, and she felt that caress across her mind, her soul. Breaking a mindtrap did not require much more pressure than he was using. She could be on the other side of the world or farther, and it would not matter a hair. The part of her that was her would be separated; she would still see with her eyes and hear with her ears, taste what crossed her tongue and feel what touched her, but helpless within an automaton that was utterly obedient to whoever held the cour'souvra. Whether or not there was any way to get free of it, a mindtrap was just what its name implied. She could feel the blood draining from her face.**

Mindtrap basically defeats it's purpose if the person you use it on has to already give their soul to the Dark One. Otherwise, how many other people did Moghedien bring? Why use a relatively easy device for controlling people, only on those that serve you?

** I think the Dark One COULD ressurect every dead soul... he just has no point, and he needs a body to do it.**

Yes, he needs a body to transmigrate souls, but that's not an apparent difficulty for him, since he's done it at least 3 times, if not 4 or more.

But also if he can control all possible souls, who says he can't just hold them away from being reborn?

**Thats the difference, the Wheel can create from scratch while the Dark One can only taint and twist already created being.**

The Wheel doesn't create souls. It takes a soul and puts it into a body which together make a thread. That's what it does. Souls are immortal things just awaiting rebirth or reborn already.

**I'm not Callandor but I can tell you what he is going to say.**

You just wish you were me ;)

**Heroes are special because they are tied to the Wheel and spun out at specific times.**

More or less, but I'd argue that even "normal" people being reborn are born with a purpose at specific times -- but the Heroes are definately larger and more important cases, since they are the corrective mechanisms for the Wheel.

15

tworiverswoman: 2006-02-17

Lotd said : “The DO said to Demandred that Rahvin is beyond his reach, but could that reach be imposed by the prison? The DO has never been free of his prison, all that "imprisoned at the moment of Creation" thing so he might not know the full extent of his powers free from his prison.”

Maybe – but it’s a moot point, since we have no idea what his powers are anyway. We only know he finds it a trial to touch the world from his prison. The keyhold access that is the bore allows him to mess with the weather (with considerable exertion), sustain the Blight, and he was able to “create” Shadar Haran. But what else he can do we have almost no idea.

Ladof said: “So the DO cannot revive souls long dead. Its a time thing. How long someone is dead is directly related to whether or not the DO can 'revive' them.”

I really think it’s even more direct than that – if he can’t catch it on the way by, it’s out of his reach. Only when he can snag it at the moment of death is it his to play with. Moiraine’s balefire was weak – probably only good for a few minutes of time re-arrangement. But that was enough to place Be’lal out of the DO’s grasp.

Ozymandia said: “They don't have to come in and push another soul out of a body, so get that notion out of your head (tworiverswoman seemed particularly vehement about that).”

Thank you – I will. (heh)

Also Ozy said:, “I just don't think the Creater walked on by, created the world, and then said "I'm going to put ____ souls in the waiting line to be born for this world and never let any more come to be". I mean, I guess this is a matter of opinion, in the end, but I think each body (excepting Heroes) gets a new soul. “

Callandor has probably already posted his answer to this, so I’ll only comment that RJ has made it very clear that this fictional world operates by reincarnation. ALL souls go through re-birth – it’s just that the Heroes are handled a little differently from Joe Smith, village butcher. As to the creation of new souls – no answer is proven, but there is probably no need for it. At any given moment, there are probably more souls “waiting in the wings” than are alive on the planet.

As a complete aside, I read a speculation once that the number of human souls on earth was in direct inverse relationship with the number of animal souls. The more people, the fewer animals. I thought this was rather clever, actually. OK – end of digression.

And, “I think the mindtrap has some sort of stipulation where hte previous utter obedience of the subject is required.”

SH has covered this – Moghedien did remember taking others to the Pit of Doom for the cour'souvra treatment. People who thought they were important. Too bad – so sad!

16

Traveller: 2006-02-18

Sorry, but I have a bone to pick with Ozymandias:

“Firstly, about "dislodging" another soul from a body. This doesn't have to happen. A body can be created specifically for the purpose of the reborn Hero. All I'm saying is that their souls are inviolate from the Dark One's control. They don't have to come in and push another soul out of a body, so get that notion out of your head”

No, what you said before was that Heroes' souls do not go to the DO, because the souls that would otherwise possess the bodies that the Heroes take over do go to the Dark One, NOT as you said in the quote above that the bodies were created specifically for the Heroes to use. Here is the quote from your original theory:

"Heroes of the Horn actually possess other bodies, and dislodge the soul held therein. Thereby, the Dark One gets his soul once that thread is over with, and the whole one-soul one-thread principle remains inviolate. Upon death of the body, the soul of the Hero returns to wherever it goes to await its next host. This way the Wheel is free to recycle its Heroes without giving them over to the absolute control the Dark Once exercises over souls."

Fair enough if you've changed your mind, but you can't say you meant something different.

17

JollyW89: 2006-02-22

I think the reason that Ishmal doesn't kill Rand is because he is totaly devoted to the DO. Not like other Foresaken who "went over to the dark side" for there own personal benifit. He is totaly devoted to the DO, i beleive there are several quotes but i can't find them.

18

Ozymandias: 2006-03-29

Traveller, its a well known fact that I end up twisting every argument I make until by the end I've contradicted every point I started out with. The main point of my theory, it seems, has become whether or not the Dark One exercises complete control over a dead soul. I happen to think yes. I mean, to me, the evidence is fairly large.

He is called "Lord of the Grave"

by no means conclusive, but generally all mythology and lore has some basis in fact, and I see no reason to doubt that here.

In a bit of convoluted arguing I like to think of the DO's quote about not being able to save Rahvin from balefire as evidence as well. The Dark One is supremely confident in his own abilities, which is why his lack thereof when dealing with balefire is indicative. If he didn't have almost absolute power otherwise, why would he be so dismayed and angered at his lack of control over this one tiny portion, almost nonexistent portion (pun intended) of souls that are balefired? Just something to think about, by no means conclusive or even solid evidence.

The Kari al'Thor argument seems to also be a bone we're picking over. I have one point to add in here, which I think was mentioned but not in the way I mean it. Living creatures are almost NEVER created in Tel'aran'rhoid (except in Callandor's horse example), and when they are, the people who did the creatin have 0 control over their creation (which makes sense, since they are sentient beings being brought into existence). So how does Ishamael create this illusion, and then proceed to have it say exactly what he would want it to? And if Rand kills the Myrddraal torturing her, she would definetely say thank you, if only for the momentary respite from torture. If you're in prison and you're being beaten and someone stops it for a few minutes, you would thank them even though you knew the beating would continue momentarily.

I admit, upon rereading the scene in question her use of language and word choice leaves it questionable as to her status as a real soul or merely an illusion, but it could go either way, and coupled with the unpredicability of sentient beings in Tel'aran'rhoid, I tilt off the fence towards the soul side.

One other point. Who's to say Jordan even had the concept of Tel'aran'rhoid at this stage in the books? He develops some of his material as he goes along, and we have no positive indication as to whether or not this is reality or no. In fact, in all liklihood, it IS reality, not T'A'R. For example, if he's in T'A'R for this scene, how is it that the armies of Shienar SEE him?? Admittedly, it's likely he isn't in our definition of reality, but we have no idea what is fleshed out in Jordan's mind and what isn't, at this point

19

Callandor: 2006-03-30

**The main point of my theory, it seems, has become whether or not the Dark One exercises complete control over a dead soul. I happen to think yes. I mean, to me, the evidence is fairly large.

He is called "Lord of the Grave"

by no means conclusive, but generally all mythology and lore has some basis in fact, and I see no reason to doubt that here.**

People say Rand is the Creator made flesh, do you believe that as well? I'd hope not, since we've seen contrary material. We've seen and heard of the limitations of the Dark One for transmigration. We know of some of them. Any limitations shows that he doesn't have complete control, let alone of any soul.

**Living creatures are almost NEVER created in Tel'aran'rhoid (except in Callandor's horse example), and when they are, the people who did the creatin have 0 control over their creation (which makes sense, since they are sentient beings being brought into existence).**

No, they have control unless they lose it. Once control is lost, like with Nynaeve and Elayne who are essentially Tel'aran'rhiod neophytes, the illusion takes on a life of it's own until it's gone.

**One other point. Who's to say Jordan even had the concept of Tel'aran'rhoid at this stage in the books? He develops some of his material as he goes along, and we have no positive indication as to whether or not this is reality or no.**

You know, people said the same thing about Ishamael's form of Traveling in the Prologue. It turns out Jordan had a perfectly rational explanation that was a fundamental fact of his world: True Power Traveling.

People said the same thing to how Rand suddenly discovered Skimming in The Shadow Rising, then realized that Rand had used this -- this exact same method -- to Skim to Ishamael in The Eye of the World.

And it's ridiculous to think that Rand and Ishamael have been having these confrontations via dreams which tel'aran'rhiod is instrumental in using. Not to mention the fact that there's a situation that's directly applicable shown later.

**For example, if he's in T'A'R for this scene, how is it that the armies of Shienar SEE him??**

They don't. They saw what he did before he Skimmed to where Ishamael was. That was in the Real World. This, was not.

**Admittedly, it's likely he isn't in our definition of reality, but we have no idea what is fleshed out in Jordan's mind and what isn't, at this point**

So, your answer is, "We can't know, so we don't know, so this is what the Dark One can do...."? Are you kidding me?

20

heridfel: 2007-09-03

The main question I would ask about this is if the dark one can't use his role as "lord of the grave" to achieve his goal, or at least it appears he could only possibly do so in an incredibly limited fashion or else he'd have a much better advantage over the light than he clearly does, why would he bother? This also assumes that souls go outside of reality into the DO's prison world because clearly the DO only has very limited control over the wheel reality which he only gained through the bore, before the bore he could not effect the world at all. So if the DO is going to control dead souls they must be outside the wheel reality with him. If this is the case how is the wheel going to recycle the souls when it presumably cannot effect anything outside of reality, and why is the DO going to let it when he is clearly more powerful than the wheel (If he wasn't then it would be no big if he broke free because the wheel could just ice him). The answer is that whatever control the DO has he has gained through the bore, and it is extremely limited. The reason for the moniker "lord of the grave" IMO is because mortals assume death is a really bad thing. It's the same reason he is called the "father of lies", when clearly he doesn't have the power to make people lie nor is he responsible for all the lies that people tell, or any of them besides the people he has direct contol over. He is also called "storm bringer" by Sea Folk because they consider storms bad, when clearly he is not responsible for most storms... It is possible that he does create storms in the blighted sea.. however this is just speculation. Clearly heroes can come into the world without being born -Birgitte proves this- however the ramifications of being ripped out are unknown, and it is clearly not the usual method. The idea that the wheel can put heroes in this way directly seems a little far fetched, if it could wouldn't all the heroes be brought back in the flesh for the last battle? What purpose would the horn serve if this was possible? Why make the dragon have a vulnerable childhood or deprive him of all the knowledge he accrued from the beginning of creation if this was possible? IMO the answer is the wheel can only bring heroes into being through birth. However life threads through exercising their limited free will can make it happen.

21

CreationEdge: 2010-11-22

It makes more sense that the GL can only control those who've gone over to his side. Fain can tell who's one the Great Lord's side. Something is obviously different about those people. By giving their allegiance to him, they allow him control over their souls and consciousness in a limited fashion (their body is destroyed, but they don't really "die" as their soul and mind is apparently transported to a new body, soul and mind as it was. The reborn Chosen have their old memories, and in Lanfear's case the strength in the power her soul had before her body was destroyed. If she had been "reborn" in truth then those things should be different: memories & strength in the power).

It's all about the belief. Most people believe in the Light and a hope of rebirth and salvation. Thus it happens. Friends of the Dark believe in immortality and the Great Lord's supremacy. Thus it happens.

22

Lorcin: 2010-11-25

I'm just going to say that even though I don't agree with the theory, well done to the person who posted it.

23

yasiru89: 2010-11-28

I disagree with this theory as most others seem to, and while I haven't read all of the previous comments, I will make a few remarks that may be novel.

Kari al'Thor's appearance in EotW was likely real. But her words demand careful scrutiny. When she says, 'The Father of Lies has a honeyed tongue for unwary souls.' This seems an obvious admission that there was some persuasion involved.

So let us examine the limitations on the Lord of the Grave.

Firstly there's balefire, and given its effect of making a thing or, more relevantly, a person, cease to exist before being hit by it the strong suspicion that the Dark One is subject to, and perhaps trapped within time arises. So that he can capture a soul the moment it dies presently, but if the release of that soul occurred before the killing (as is the case with balefire) and he did not capture the soul in the past, he does not have it.

Now for what Kari's admission gives us. I believe oaths to the Dark One allow him to capture a soul of one of his minions (Forsaken or Darkfriend, or even, if it applies, Shadowspawn) and perhaps forsaking the Light does as well (if Fain dies for instance, having once been a Darkfriend, perhaps he is tied to the Dark One- so perhaps he can be resurrected, in which case, as things stand now, the Dark One would have control of Mashadar!), but those of the Light who deny him power over them can slip by him unhindered. However, this isn't to say he can trick and manipulate- which is perhaps how Kari al'Thor ended up bound to Ba'alzamon.

On to the Heroes of the Horn from here, obviously they're heroes of the Light for a reason and would not be so easily tricked. They are tied to the Wheel through the Horn, but their rebirths happen as with everyone else- they simply do not succumb to the Dark One in their passings.

Also a point of interest about the Heroes of the Horn is Hawkwing's reluctance to set out without the Dragon Banner in tGH. I wonder how important it was for the 'weave of the moment to be set'. If it was so that they could not set out without it at all, then perhaps Siuan's warning that the Horn could be sounded by the Shadow (rather unlikely even then since most Darkfriends would be after glory- unless of course they were tortured and threatened and made to believe they can only gain favour from the Great Lord once more by sounding the Horn successfully- that would certainly be salvation, but this is a carefully engineered scenario, though perhaps not beyond Ishamael) was moot and this was no concern to begin with. Either that or the weave of the moment if the Shadow got hold of the Horn would have been in riding under the Banner of the Shadow.