Dara Happa uber alles

From: TTrotsky@aol.com
Date: Tue 27 May 1997 - 01:49:44 EEST


<< Me: Peter Metcalfe, though, is unconvinced. He objects to my Roman
analogy
>because the Romans had better technology, a larger population base, better
>organisation and so on. This was exactly _my_ point.
 
 Martin: No, I didn't! *You* said the Romans had these 'advantages' whereas
 I pointed out that the Carthaginians and the Hellenistic Empires
 *also* had them. >>

     My apologies. I don't see what effect this has on the validity of my
argument, though. Glorantha has technology and so on as well as magic, so if
the magic is on an equal footing, so to speak, we should expect to see the
same sorts of things happening (militarily speaking, and on the grand scale)
as in our world, where cultures are also on an equal magical footing (i.e. it
doesn't work).
 
<< Me:>The Lunars are also
>better in these areas, and it has nothing to do with the _quality_ of their
>magic.
 
 Martin: It has heaps to do with their magic. The Carmanians and Sheng
 Seleris both had a larger population base, a better military etc
 when they were defeated by the Lunars. So how come they were
 defeated?>>
 
     Same reasons the Romans conquered the Greeks and Carthaginians, I dare
say.
 
<< Me: The point I was making was that the magic of all cultures is
inherently
>equal. No matter who you are, one point of magic is one point of magic.
 
 Peter: So the bolt-action rifle and an automatic rifle are equal because
they
 fire the same sort of bullet? >>

     No, because of the other technological advances involved.
 
<<Me: > My original point was that because all magic is equally potent in
>principle, regardless of what culture the caster comes from, you can't use
>the 'power' of magic to determine who is 'right' about mythic history.
 
 Peter: On the contrary, You can quite easily make such arguments. You may
 not be able to make an argument to convince Sir Skeptic but many
 cultures in the real world and in glorantha *do* make such arguments. >>

 
     Absolutely. I never said they didn't. I just said they were wrong.

 <<Me: >An analogy: In the RW we use science to guage the nature of the
world. I'm > a scientist, of sorts, but this doesn't mean I'd last very
long if someone
>went rampaging through my lab with a machine-gun. Does this mean that a
>machine-gun is a more technologically advanced piece of equipment than
>any of the stuff in the lab?
      
 Peter: Compare like with like. The machine gun is a product of your
 scientist's culture whereas those cultures which did not have
 scientists generally do not have machine guns. A more apt
 comparison would be the machine gun equipped soldier sent to
 fight a Zulu. >>
 
    Why is this a more apt comparison? Again, I suspect we're not arguing
about the same thing here.

<<Peter: You may well object here that mere superiority in military magic
 does not translate into overall superiority in magic and I would
 agree.>>

    Yup.

 <<However the Lunar Empire is not solely a military culture and those
insights
 which have made the Empire supreme within its sphere of influence
 are likely to have been adapted by the civilian side of the Lunar Empire.
>>

     I see no reason to assume this. The Empire does well because it can
adapt magic to regimental use. Even if it could apply this to other fields
(and it clearly can in at least some, e.g. the cult of Kalikos), it still
doesn't make their magic 'better' in the sense in which I mean it.

PS: Is anyone bored with this yet? Tell us to shut up and use private e-mail
if you are.

All hail the Reaching Moon!
    Trotsky

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