Could a listener be a squire?
That is a RAFO.
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Could a listener be a squire?
That is a RAFO.
Would a parshman who received multiple breaths, or any other type of Investiture, be able to gain sentence or become more like listener-- Kind of like mistwraith/kandra?
That would require some Identity changes and transformations.
So it's not just a dump of--
It's not just a dump. It's a biological thing for them, they've adapted. So they've evolved to the point where this sort of thing-- It would be like trying to power DC with AC current or the wrong voltage or something like that... I mean once you figure it out it could be an easy hack but finding out that hack it's like-- You know it's like going back to people in the 1800's and being like "Why don't you guys have electricity?" *laughter*
Are the Parshendi of Honor?
Eshonai mentions that the Stormfather (rather, the Rider of Storms to her) was one of the spren who betrayed the listeners for the humans.
Was the Rider of Storms around before Honor and Cultivation arrived on Roshar?
Is the Stormfather composed partly of Cultivation's Investiture?
How about the other way around? Can a Parshendi bond a Knights Radiant spren?
Historically, the Parshendi were not made Knights Radiant, or the parshmen weren't.
Can they become squires maybe?
Historically they did not, but it's not impossible.
What happens to the spren the Parshendi bond when they switch form? So say if they're in soldier form, and they switch over to mate, what happens to that spren?
The spren is released.
So when they took on void, they didn't kill their previous spren?
No, they don't kill when they-- No. That's a good question. Nope.
Do those spren evolve in any way into something else?
Those spren that they are bonding with are generally what we call non-sapient spren, and so, no, and also the spren are barely aware that they-- they're bonded--- those spren, the non-voidspren, right? Like when they're bonding, generally what's happening is how... It's a symbiotic relationship, right? And the spren that gets bonded to them, it's just kind of like, "Oh, this is my life now! This is just normal. This is what's happened." The same thing happens with spren involved in greatshells and things like this. This is a natural part of the natural cycle for those spren.
When a Parshendi changes forms, are they taking different spren into their gemhearts?
When a Parshendi changes forms, they are carefully entering into a symbiotic relationship with a new spren.
But-- *audience laughter*
That's the answer you're going to get. That's a RAFO.
[He started to ask the question and then realized that the book he had given him to sign was already signed, so there’s some unrelated stuff in there] When the Listeners change form, they do that by bonding with spren, right?
Are there specific spren that they need to bond with for specific forms?
Is the spren for dullform lifespren?
Can Hemelurgic Spikes be used to steal Listener forms?
Replicate them, perhaps. Stealing them would be like stealing the fact that someone is Asian--not really what Hemalurgy does.
The parshendi didn’t have the emotions like Contempt, Ridicule [etc. before the Everstorm?]
They did have those emotions, but they didn’t match them to the Rhythms the same way. A wide variety of emotions can be matched to a rhythm. It doesn’t mean they didn’t have those emotions.
So you are saying that, like Ridicule is a new version of Amusement, they could have used ridicule but say it to Amusement? [...]
And that’s a harsher form, Ridicule?
That is just how the rhythms are named. I’ll leave it to your interpretation whether they are harsher or not. A rhythm is just a beat. Whether it is harsh or not depends on the interpretation of the person listening to it. But yes, you could have ridiculed people to Amusement before.
But you have new rhythms.
You have new rhythms which have a different feel to them.
Quick question: I had a hard time "hearing" the Parshendi's singing in my head while reading The Way of Kings and Words of Radiance. Are there any real world examples you drew from you could give me so we have a better idea of what they sound like to you?
It was tough, as I didn't want to constrain their language in English to a certain rhythm, as I felt it would be too gimmicky on the page. I used Hindu chants in my head, though, so that might help.
I've been thinking about the Parshendi and I guess this is as good a place to ask as any - when the parshendi change, there's an obvious change in the physical realm, and there seems to be a change in the cognitive realm as well. Is there a change in the spiritual realm? I know we haven't dug much into it, but it seems like a change in the spiritual realm is very difficult or impossible - if you could change in the spiritual realm is it really the same 'thing' at the end of the process? Mostly I'm curious about the first question...the second question is more of a philosophical train of thought.
Things in the spiritual realm do change, but subtly. For instance, a person's spiritual component knows how old they are.
A dullform listener is indoors when the Everstorm passes over, will they be transformed into a Voidform?
No. It depends on the strength of the boundary between them, but it is possible for them-- And also being transformed, taking new forms is-- There is a measure of will behind it, meaning-- For instance, even when Eshonai took the new form, she had herself open to taking a new form. By the time she didn't want to, it was too late. But she had made the decision, even though she'd been kind of misled in some ways. If a parshmen were in-- even in the Everstorm, and aggressively didn't want this to happen, I'm not saying it won't, but I'm saying there is room for discussion of whether or not they would change there. But also one who does want to, and is-- there's only a little pane of glass and things like that, then-- Yeah.
Knowing that you have already stated that the Listeners aren't originally of Odium or of Cultivation. Is it possible that they could actually originally be of what opposes Adonalsium?
I'm going to have to RAFO your question; good question though.
So you said how stuff is stuffed into the soul changes what a bond can give. Is that like the difference between a Spren bonding a Person and and maybe Hemalurgy forcing a bond or is it more like the difference with how Parshendi form bonds with Spren?
I guess a better way to say that is would the bond be different if a human created the bond with a Spren not a Spren Bonding with a human?
These things are all important parts of the system, and I'm curious to see where fans go in exploring the possibilities and theories related to it.
[My cousin] thinks the Parshendi were made by someone so that spren could have a physical form. And he would like some critique on that.
Parshmen were created to be an essential part of the Rosharan ecosystem.
Were the Parshendi based on something the Shards had seen before, in the same way the humans (and horses, and chickens) of Roshar were?
RAFO! You're asking the right questions, though.
Okay, so if we spiked a Listener with Feruchemical Nicrosil, could he store that spren and lose their form, and then bond another spren and then switch them?
I'm gonna give you your third RAFO, because he's already got two. In part, because I don't wanna give spoilers for Oathbringer, and this answer could spoil some little bits of that.
In The Way of Kings, is assassination a common thing in the Parshendi culture, because it seems odd that they would have a specific custom for what assassins wear?
It is something that happened quite a bit more in the past than it does now. But yes, you will find out much more about them. They are now more unified, but they used to be a bunch of different tribes, and they would send assassins into each other's camps.
Stormlight Archive cosplayers gonna love this! What do you think [Brandon]?
Wow. Yeah, that would be perfect.
Can you explain the difference between a singer and a listener?
Singer is the name of the people in their own language. Listener, this group that split off from the singers and did not want to be called singers anymore, called themselves listeners and that name perpetuated. You could say that singer is the name of race and listener is the name of the nation.
What might happen if you gave a parshman a breath (or breaths?) Would they develop a form for it, or might it generally help them think more clearly?
You're actually the first to ask this. And yes, it would work.
Have you included (or do you potentially intend to include) any asexual characters in your published works? Asexual characters don't seem to be very common in fiction, and I'm sure it would be fantastic for people that identify as such to feel in any way represented by one of your characters!
I originally conceived the asexual nature of most Parshendi (from the Stormlight Archive) forms after reading a very thought-provoking article written by someone asexual. The idea of a primarily asexual race was a fascinating idea to me, and you will see this more in future books.
can somene be born half-parshnedi or maybe even half-spren??
The Horneaters and the Herdazians are both descendants of Parshendi/human interbreeding.
Spren do not reproduce biologically. As such, the term "half-spren" is basically meaningless. You could argue that the Parshendi, when bonded to spren, are part spren--as are many creatures on Roshar, if they have a spren symbiosis.
What would happen to the listeners if Odium were to be Splintered?
Odium being Splintered would not terribly affect the listeners. Now, various other members of that faction like the singers and the Fused might see effects. The listeners could deal with that very easily. Wouldn't even affect them.
Do you have a single name that you use to refer to all the singers, and the listeners, and the Parshmen: that entire species?
Yeah, I usually use listener, but that's a cultural thing. So, I don't right now.
I keep struggling with what to call them as a species, and eeehhh are they all singers? I mean they aren't really all singers.
We'll settle on something eventually.
Okay, but we don't have anything right now.
Is there any more lyrics to the listener songs? If so, can you share some, please?
I'm afraid I went to a poet and had them rewrite my versions for me, as my poetry chops are pretty weak. So I don't have any more than the ones in the book.
You said earlier that Parshendi are primarily asexual, does that extend to all Listeners -- parshmen, and those descended from Listeners, like Horneaters and Herdazians -- or is it just the Parshendi?
Most Listener forms are asexual, but several forms are different, including slaveform. Horneaters and Herdazians are not, as a rule, though there are higher instances of asexuality among them.
I was actually wondering about how Parshmen would reproduce if they are only in slaveform? I thought one had to be in mateform in order to reproduce?
Also, could Horneaters and Herdazians change forms as well?
For the first, mateform is not the only form capable of producing--any more than warform is the only one capable of swinging a sword. The forms are specializations.
For the second, RAFO.
Are we going to find out soon if the Parshendi are actually of Honor?
Yes. (You'll find out.)
Do koloss have hair?
...It depends on the form. Some do, some don't. But, in general, they do. But it's not-- Here's the thing, it's not quite hair. They're not mammalian.
What are they if they're not mammalian?
They are their own-- uh, yeah.
I didn't realize Horneaters had parshmen blood, didn't even realize that was possible. How closely are humans and parshmen related, do they have a common ancestor? Or is one an artificially created version of the other?
There was intermixing long ago. Horneaters and Herdazians are both a result. (Signs of this are the stone carapace on Herdazian fingernails and the Horneater extra jaw pieces--in the back of the mouth--for breaking shells.)
Humans and parshmen don't have a common ancestor. And as a side note, both of these strains of humanoids predate the ascension of Honor, Cultivation, and Odium.
Are there Aimian-Human hybrids as well? (Either type of Aimian) If so, are the Thaylen people one of these?
*via private message*
Some of us believe that you are saying that humans and listeners existed pre-Shattering while some of us believe that you are saying that Horneaters and Herdazians existed pre-Shattering (you have mentioned that humans had been on Roshar since before the Shattering recently). What were you trying to say here?
Humans (other than those on Yolen) existed pre-Shattering, as did parshmen.
You've mentioned several philosophical concepts used in the writing of your books, like Jung's collective unconsciousness, Plato's cave. Could you expand a bit on your use of those in your books, and whether you think it is necessary to use philosophy to make a good fantasy world?
I don't think it's necessary at all. The writer's own fascinations--whatever they are--can add to the writing experience. But yes, some philosophical ideas worked into my fiction. Plato's theory of the forms has always fascinated, and so the idea of a physical/cognitive/spiritual realm is certainly a product of this. Human perception of ideals has a lot to do with the cognitive realm, and a true ideal has a lot to do with the spiritual realm.
As for more examples, they're spread through my fiction. Spinoza is in there a lot, and Jung has a lot to do with the idea of spiritual connectivity (and how the Parshendi can all sing the same songs.)
Not completely sure where Spinoaza comes in. I guess the shards are part of the natural world and have no personality without a human wielder.
Yes on Spinoza there, and also the idea of God being in everything, and everything of one substance. Unifying laws. Those sorts of things. (Less his determinism, though.)
Are the Parshendi gods that they abandoned the Unmade?
I had a question about the Parshendi, do they have a negotiating form? I ask because it seems they must have shifted forms before/just after the betrayal and are now stuck in war form, but if they had the ability to negotiate before why not now?
More of this will be answered in book two. They aren't 'stuck' in warform, but do have limited options.
Can a kandra duplicate a Parshendi carapace?
No, they cannot.
I've noticed that in the Listener songs there are two different, semi-conflicting stanzas between the song of histories and the song of secrets when it comes to Smokeform. The latter song also seems to be more consistently critical and fearful of Odium and the forms of power. Am I noticing something relevant here, and if so could you elaborate on why?
Yes, you are noticing something real.
Note that Listener history is...fraught. And while the rhythms are standardized, the words are applied to them have a lot more cultural influence and interpretation.
Are there non-human races on Roshar, or non-humanoid races that are sentient?
The Parshendi are not human, but you probably already knew that. The two races of Aimians are not human either. There are many races of sentient spren. From there, it depends if you call something like Ryshadium sentient or not.
Why can Rock see Syl?
*pause* Okay time to pause the record-- This doesn't go online, okay? *Audio paused*
Thank you sir.
Maybe you already knew that.
Do you ever get annoyed with us?
No. I thought I talked about the--
Yeah the-- So I mentioned both of them?
Is there anything you can tell us about where the listeners are? From Narak, after they--
Yes. They are still kind of in the area. They have made their way out through the chasms, out onto some floodplains on the other side.
So is it the same thing with the Parshendi, are there other races that can do similar things and Invest creatures like that themselves?
Um, ye-- In the cosmere, yes there are other things that do that but they're pretty rare, whereas things like seons and spren are actually only medium rare. They're some kind of medium common.
Is there anything preventing the listeners, or Parshendi, from picking up a sword of Radiance
So, it's not something that *inaudible*
Something was preventing them. You phrased that well.
I also asked Peter about the different meter used in the epigraphs containing bits of the listener songs, and whether that was because they were supposed to be sung to different Rhythms.
He said yes.
Can Parshendi provide what the humans can provide, in terms of a mutualistic relationship with the spren?
Could a Parshendi form a bond with an intoxicationspren?
Theoretically possible, yes.
Would it look ugly?
It may not be the best idea they ever had.
I asked Brandon what the Rhythm was for the Listener Song of Listing.
He said that it's not one of the emotive Rhythms, and that the Parshendi have certain Rhythms for those chants.
Do Shards need to be based on the same planet to create the interactions that made Feruchemy possible?
If the Parshendi are not originally from Odium and are referred to as the Ancient Ones by spren, then would that make the original Parshendi, bonded to the Splinters that existed before Honor and Cultivation arrived, the Dawnsingers?
If you took a Parshendi... And they were born outside Roshar and never visited Roshar in their lives, would they hear the Rhythms beyond Roshar?
Would they hear the Rhythms beyond Roshar... If you took one that was not born on Roshar, would they feel the Rhythms off-Roshar or just Rhythms in general?
Rhythms in general.
Yes, they would sense them.
Even beyond Roshar?
What they are sensing... it's something that pervades the Cosmere but on Roshar has specific way of manifesting.
Is it the same thing that Soothers and Rioters are using?
Now you're straying into RAFO territory with your question/good question...
Are the Parshendi of Odium?
Are the Parshendi of Cultivation?