Superflous Superheroes

From: Mike Cule (
Date: Mon 15 May 1995 - 13:51:52 EEST

As someone who had the nerve to put forward his own views on Heroes and so on I think I should comment on Bryan J.Maloney's reposting of (some) of Greg's views on Heroquesting:

> "Who can go on a Heroquest?
> Anyone, as long as they have obtained the consciousness to do it..."

Yes, I think we can all agree on that.

> "What is a Hero?
> A person who has attained integration of himself with the three worlds,
> and idealizes some aspiration of his society, and is widely acknowledge to
> do so, is a Hero."

I would say that anyone who can mark all three worlds with his Will has become a Hero. But to remain a Hero and remain a force in the three worlds requires that something outside yourself sustain your acheivement. (For me the critical requirement is that your story be re-affirmed at the Sacred Time.) It is possible to be a Hero with only a small and exclusive cult. (Sir Ethilrist and Cragspider are the obvious examples.) But you do need the support of some culture, however small, somewhere. The idealize-some-aspiration-of-your-society bit is not a requirement to go Heroquesting. But your society won't support you and sustain your myth if you don't provide something they need.

> "What is a Superhero?
> [A counter in the game of Dragon Pass...] In some of my old thinkining,
> this was a very powerful hero (THE INFINITY SIGN IN THAT GAME IS A GAME
> RULE MEASURE, AND NOT A COSMIC SECRET). In terms of my current Heroquest
> vision, THIS IS A SUPERFLUOUS DEFINITION." [emphasis mine]

Well, ummm, ye see....

This is where I outright disagree with Greg and I think he's becoming 'mechanistic' in fixing everything to society and one particular theme of how-to - -do-things. For what it's worth let me repost my version of the Three Revelations of Arkat.

  1. As Above, So Below.
  2. As Below, So Above.
  3. All Rules Have Exceptions.

I think that the Superheroes are the exception to the Rules about Heromaking. They are primarily individuals and can do things for their own reasons rather than the reasons of their society. I think there should be a difference between Harrek and Androgeus (and to a lesser extent) Jar-Eel and the rest. I don't find this to be a bug. I think it is a feature.

Bryan also says:
> Reaching Moon Megacorp should reprint this issue (THE HEROQUEST ISSUE OF
  TOTRM), and keep reprints in
> stock. It is probably the one issue that I have used more than any other.

Yes, indeedy! The most revealing and deepest exploration of Glorantha they have yet published.
- --
Mike Cule

Actor and Genius.
AKA Theophilus, Prince-Archbishop of the Far Isles (Arms: Purpure, an open book proper. On the dexter page the letter Alpha or. On the sinister page the letter Omega of the same. Motto: nulla spes sit in resistendo.)
Ask me about the Far Isles Medieval Society: Better living through pan-medieval anachronisms.

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