From: Peter Metcalfe (
Date: Sat 16 May 1998 - 08:05:41 EEST

Frank Rafaelsen:

[About Oddi the Keen seeing the Crimson Bat and not detecting Chaos]
>This is obviously a case for my pocket razor (I'll try it again, without
>cutting myself this time I hope :). Your claim depends on his intinctively
>comprehension, a comprehension we can't detect or see. And I claim that
>the text in fact leans in the direction of my position (of course). You
>see, even when it is made clear to him that he is illuminated he doesn't
>realize the implications. Implications that you claim are the essence of

This is getting confusing. My position is that Illumination consists
of a profound spiritual insight. To 'avoid spirits of reprisal' among
other tricks requires teaching from another master. I fail to see how
this translates into 'avoid spirits of reprisal' being the essense of
illumination. Or do you mean something else by 'implications'?

>Now I don't argue that illumination doesn't change Oddi, I only claim that
>the change comes from the powers and not the other way around. And I also
>claim that the changes of personality comes from Oddi's interpretation of
>the implications. Of course in the saga his interpretation is helped by a

Careful here. What Illumination powers did Oddi manifest when he saw
the Crimson Bat?

>> OTOH One could argue that since the Crimson Bat itself is illuminated,
>> it doesn't register on Sense Chaos. But I have cold feet about this.

>Is it illuminated? I can't remember. But I would think that if it didn't
>register on the senses of The Bull it would be a well known puzzle.

Which is the main reason why I don't like this solution. But the
Crimson Bat was illuminated by the Red Goddess (according to a post
by Eric Rowe some time back) and that is why it has so many eyes
(hahahaha). IMO the Bat simply has not learned how to conceal its
chaotic nature.

>> There _are_ schools of illumination and there are cultural understandings
>> of illumination but it is a mistake IMO to say that the Illuminated
>> Viewpoint is solely coloured by the beliefs of these schools or cultures.

>Of course you could say this, and it is the state-supported view of an
>empire. In glorantha this is a question of faith. [...]

>To bring this thread back to the beginning, the question of Yelm's
>illumination: my original point was that saying Yelm is illuminated
>doesn't say much. Illumination is what you make it, and it seems that
>illumination is _The_ Dara Happan word of a higher consciousness (which
>isn't that revolutionary since that is exactly how it is used in english).
>And with the rather strict consensus about the usefullness of divination
>there isn't much hope in asking him about it, now is there.

I see what you are getting at. To reword the statement to
answer your objections. Yelm received through his times of
trial a profound spiritual insight that the Dara Happans
called Illumination. As a result of the God Project, a
powerful Avatar, Nysalor, who could teach this insight more
readily, was born. His teachings survived his death and became
incorporated by the Red Goddess as part of the Lunar Way.

Now the core insight of Yelm and Nysalor is still essentially the
same as the core insight taught by the Lunars. What has changed
is the applications of that insight and so to an outside
observer, it may appear that the two illuminations are in fact
different insights altogether. Furthermore by contact with
other regions (Kralorela, Orlanthi, Malkioni), the Lunars have
expanded and deepened the core insight.

This leaves open the question about whether the other profound
spiritual insights (Metsyla's enlightenment etc) are the same.
I'm inclined to believe they are analogous more than anything

>I think, and in this I believe I'm supported by the article on
> about Humakt, that there isn't one illumination, there
>are many states of illumination (RQ sight was one, I believe).

If you replaced 'illumination' with 'profound spiritual insight'
then I would agree with you.

- --Peter Metcalfe


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