From: Peter Metcalfe (
Date: Tue 03 Feb 1998 - 14:57:01 EET

Michael O'Brien:

The Red Emperor of Kuchawn:

>Are we talking a humilated prisoner,
>held up to ridicule in a golden cage (sort of like, say, the Emperor
>Romanus Diogenes wasn't?), a tame Prince Orhan-like pretender held in
>reserve as a diplomatic bargaining chip, or something completely
>different? I love the idea of a Lunar pretender's court, perhaps with
>his own Hell Sisters (his own Great Sister?), living in a pale parody
>of the real thing at the Celestial Emperor's pleasure.

I think he's officially a gardener at the Observatory at Kuchawn
but because of his stellar knowlege and exotic learning amongst
other things, he has amassed a fortune over the years and runs
a lunar enclave of sorts (complete with court). What his future
plans are yet I don't know.


>I find the
>idea that the current Kralori system owes more to Yanoor than to
>the FDR to be the more interesting idea of the two, so that's the
>one I prefer.

The only problem is that it had precious little to explain how a
situation could arise. Simply waving hands and claiming that it
happened because 'Kralorela is the most perfect land in the world'
cuts little mustard for a glorantha which has detailed and credible
histories for other places. Why did Godunya leave at the Sunstop
only to return at the Awakening Shudder? How could he let his
people suffer foreign conquest and domination for a long time?

It also happens to eliminate any scope for big mysteries about bygone
eras (ie Arkat/Nysalor, EWF, God Learners etc) which have great potential
for exploration elsewhere. If Godunya was really the Emperor at the
Sunstop and returned in inaugurate the first age Kralori system, then
it removes doubt about whether people like the New Dragons or the Kralori
are evil. But if one knew that the Hsunchen rule large tracts peacefully
during Yanoor's realm or that the God Learners introduced some good
changes that we still can't get rid of, them it becomes more ambivalent.

Nils Weinander:

>Peter, I am offended by your style of argument, and deeming
>by posts from Trotsky and Stephen I am not alone in perceiving
>it as peremptory and condescending.

Name an argument that was offensive in such a manner. I have had
to put up with misreadings (I am dismissing quotes out-of-hand),
snide remarks (Nope. YMMV), strawmen (I believe the Sun is called
Yelm in Kralorela), plain wrong statements (The Kralori have no
afterlife) and accusations of ill-faith at an unprecedented level.
Despite this, I have endeavoured in this debate to see the other
persons side of things, adapt or take on board some of their ideas,
patiently tried to explain the difference between cultural continuity
and cultural stasis and minimize bandwidth amongst other things. Thus
I do not see any grounds for complaints that I have been acting
arrogantly etc.

>I respect your right of an opinion and the actual
>opinions, even when I disagree with them. I do not perceive
>that I receive any kind of respect in return.

And what have I been disrepectful to you about? I may have
been testy but I have at least tried to maintain a cordial

Now this will be the last posting from me on Kralori meta-issues.
People who wish to criticize my habits in the future are advised
to get over it.

>I have never denied that other cultures claim an ancient
>basis for their culture. What I said was that the Genertela
>book quote says that Kralorelan culture _is_ based on
>Golden Age customs, not that the Kralorelans _say so_. The
>text is not written from a specifically Kralorelan point
>of view and the only other culture that gets such comments
>is the Brithini.


The other cultures _also_ practice golden age customs. The Dara
Happans get a huge pile of them from the Gods Wall and other
sources. Simply because it's not said so in the Genertela Book
does not mean that there are no golden age customs being practiced
outside Kralorela and Brithos. Are we clear now?

Now I accept that Kralorela practices a whole stack of them
and crows to High Heaven about doing so. But they also practice
some other customs from a variety of sources and have a deeply
ambivalent attitude towards them.

"Gosh, We like to be rid of the Cannibal Cult, but who else will
pacify the Tortured Dead?"

"Is it Right for us to rule over Bliss in Ignorance given that none of
our ancestors did so? If we give it up and go home then what about
our imperial security?"

"Yes, the Path of Immanent Mastery is pond slime but we can't do without
their military contribution."

"The Heavens are changing with new stars appearing and old ones fading.
This foreigner in Kuchawn claims that everything is all right and
he worked what was happening long ago but how do we know he's not
trying to undermind the Land of Splendor?"

"In the days of our ancestors, we never had to deal with Pentans and
praxians and foreign seamen. Perhaps we should ignore them and they'll
go away?"

Secondly Golden Age customs are _not_ the panacea for the world's
ills. The last time the world practiced golden age customs, it lead
to the Gods War.

>By the way, the RQC text does say that Kralorela had struggles
>against Orlanth and Kajaboom, but not explicitly that they
>invaded the land. When the latter is concerned, I choose to
>think that he didn't, based on the comment that Kralorela
>went through the Darkness relatively unscathed.

Turn your eyes towards Gods of Glorantha:

        'Orlanth the Rebel is the fearsome usurper who once
        sought to tear down our benign Dragon Empire. He rules
        wild places and is the leader of foes. He destroyed
        the Golden Age with pernicous wars. Yet he was
        conquered through the purity of our celestial truth
        and is now tamed through compromise.'
                        What the Dragon Lord Whispers.

>From the mention of Dragon Empire, it seems to me that Orlanth
(or whatever the Kralori call him) got up to his tricks after
the Emperor Daruda. I have no doubt that he created huge amounts
of havoc in the Land of Splendor as did the Sun Storm and the
Elemental Beings. The mention of usurper even indicates that he
was successful for a while. As that now makes three out of the
four 'issues' being invaders and conquerers of Kralorela, there
exists little doubt IMO that Kajaboom was also a conquerer.

'relatively unscathed' is nevertheless correct. To the west, the
Kralori can see the Wastelands of Genert. To the north, they can
see the horrid trolls of ignorance eating babies for breakfast. To
the south, they can see acres of fetid jungle inhospitable to man.
To the west is undrinkable water populated by hostile merfolk. Of
course they came through the Gods War unscathed!
- --Peter Metcalfe


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