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JordanCon 2016 ()
#1 Copy


Is the reason Dalinar rejects the Thrill because he has a connection to Honor through his visions from the Stormfather?

Brandon Sanderson

…Is the reason that Dalinar rejects the Thrill because he has a connection to the Stormfather through his visions?



Brandon Sanderson

The answer is yes, this is parti-- this is in play. Though you could say the two of them have a si-- The reason he has a connection to the Stormfather also influences the reason that he rejects the Thrill, so it may be more correlation than causation, but there's at least a little causation as well.

Paris signing ()
#6 Copy


At the end of TWoK, in the last Dalinar's vision, he stands "in a place of smoke. He turned about, wary. The sky was dark and he stood on a field of dull, bone-white rock, jagged and rough, extending in all directions. Off into eternity". Is this place Damnation/Braize ?

Brandon Sanderson

That will be explained in Oathbringer. So RAFO.

Bands of Mourning release party ()
#7 Copy


Why was Dalinar able to feel the Thrill during his visions from the Stormfather?

Brandon Sanderson

Why was Dalinar able to feel the Thrill during his visions from the Stormfather. Well that would indicate that the same reason he feels the Thrill now still was in existence. Well not-- I mean was still affecting him. Does that make sense? He was in the real world, his body was in the real world. Whatever makes him feel the Thrill was still affecting him. Does that make any sense?

Skype Q&A ()
#8 Copy


Continuity question:

Just prior to meeting with the Nightwatcher 5.5 years ago, Dalinar wakes up at the end of a highstorm and seems to have experienced a vision from Stormfather. But in The Way of Kings, Dalinar says that the visions only began "a few months ago." He also seems to have specific memory of the "first" even if he can't recall all of the details, and it seems unlikely he would have visions for several years without anyone having noticed.

So, should we assume that (1) this strange "dream" in Oathbringer was not actually a one of Honor's visions? Is that just a weird dream, or perhaps some OTHER vision from Stormfather?

Or, (2) this is one of Honor's visions and any contradictory details from The Way of Kings are superseded by Oathbringer?

Or, (3) this is one of Honor's visions, and Dalinar just doesn't remember his history of the visions very well.

Brandon Sanderson

So, I did this quite intentionally, it's not number two. But I expected these questions to be asked, and it's a RAFO, but it's one of these RAFOs where I wrote it very deliberately the way I did on purpose, and I'm going to leave it to your speculation as to what it means.

General Reddit 2016 ()
#9 Copy


Dalinar's visions: at the end they are revealed to be a "journal", where his interactions are superfluous. How does this explain the vision where he fought the smoke creatures with a fire poker? There his actions were having an impact.

Brandon Sanderson

We get into this in the next book with some vivid examples. So it's a RAFO--but with a promise that an explanation is coming.

YouTube Spoiler Stream 1 ()
#13 Copy

Gordon Kelsch

Can Dalinar permanently bring someone back from the Spiritual Realm?

Brandon Sanderson

No. In fact, whether or not the voices he is hearing are legitimately voices from Beyond the Spiritual Realm, or if they're a manifestation much like the visions that the Stormfather creates, where Dalinar's desire for certain things is basically creating... So when Dalinar goes into the visions, what's going on there is: these are not people with autonomy that he is interacting with. These are Investiture manifesting a basic AI that is able to adapt, cause Investiture kind of can do this.

Dalinar would argue, "Yes, that's the case except for when I actually met Nohadon. That character felt different, that felt like the real Nohadon stretching through the Spiritual Realm and actually interacting." Jasnah would say, "No, that's because, Dalinar, you have such, in your mind, a hope and desire to see Nohadon, he's this mythological figure in your head, that basically the Stormfather's knowledge of who he actually was was creating this much more animated puppet that was more like actually how Nohadon was, but was based on knowledge of the spren and the Investiture that you're interacting with." And Dalinar would say, "I heard Evi's voice." Jasnah would say, "You heard the Investiture coming to life and speaking with her voice the things you needed to hear. And it wasn't that the Stormfather was like, 'He needs to hear this, I'm going to create this fake.' But it's instead your relationship with this magical force that does take on life of its own, manifesting this thing." Which one it is, I do not answer. Both are, I consider, equally valid interpretations of the text, and equally valid interpretations of the magic system.

Once someone is passed into the Beyond, there is no force that can bring them back, according to people's understanding of the magic system. There is even the argument that Cognitive Shadows are not the person. That the Cognitive Shadow is indeed a spren with the memories and an imprint of the person's personality that becomes self aware and continued on living that person. It's kind of the same question that arises in Star Trek. When you are ripped apart and rebuilt piece by piece with the transporter, some people in Star Trek do not believe you are becoming the same person again. You are then a different individual who has been cloned from the person and had the memories attached. Functionally, in the narrative, for the reader, it's the same. Is it the same soul or not? That question is answered differently by different people in the Cosmere. There are equally valid interpretations from the reader. You get to decide, basically. You get to decide, just like if there's a story where a person's brain is uploaded to a computer, you get to decide: is that the same person? Because we can't do that, we don't know. Is that the exact same individual, or is that a computer simulation of that person, where the person has died? That's what a Cognitive Shadow essentially is, but using Cosmere physics instead of theoretical science fiction physics.

Worldbuilders AMA ()
#14 Copy


In Chapter 19 of The Way of Kings, when Dalinar has a vision of fighting Voidbringers (maybe something else?) as a farmer, he says that he felt the Thrill in the vision. Does this mean that Nergaoul was active there, at the time that vision was "recorded" or was it Dalinar's viewing of the vision that was affected by the Thrill? Would the actual person whose perspective he was seeing have felt the Thrill if he had fought?

Brandon Sanderson

This is a great question, and one I've never been asked before. The answer is going to be a little vague.

First, Dalinar could have felt the Thrill from Nergaoul, and imported it into the vision.

Second, Nergaoul could have been active then, and the farmer could have felt it when he fought.

So both theories are valid. Which is it? I am going to hang back from answering this for now, as I am digging more into the Unmade in a future book.

General Reddit 2021 ()
#17 Copy


I noticed some interesting things during my re read of Oathbringer after Rhythm of War and I am not sure if they are mistakes or not.

First thing is voices in Dalinar's head. In previous books he could hear Honor's voice (assuming this is indeed Honor) only in visions.

Because obviously Honor is dead and cannot talk to Dalinar for real. In Oathbringer Dalinar suddenly starts to hear this voice even outside of the visions and it's not the Stormfather.

Second thing is warm light that comes from a place beyond. Dalinar always says this light comes from a distant place, but in the final scene of Oathbringer (Dalinar rejects Odium) he can feel this light inside of himself.

So the question is: is this a mistake or was it done intentionally?

And the last thing I notice - Dalinar exhibits aspects of all three shards and he's been literally touched by all of them. Is it important?

Brandon Sanderson

The first one is intentional. Read into that what you will. Though I don't know if you're completely interpreting it right.

This second one is also intentional, and you are reading it correctly.

And yes, Dalinar exhibiting aspects of all three aspects of all three shards is important.

Leipzig Book Fair ()
#19 Copy


The visions Dalinar gets in WoK always struck me as odd - you don't just look at the past, you are able to act within this experience. Now we know that Gavilar was also on the way to being a Bondsmith - was he acting in a different way? Were the visions only basically the same but different in the end depending on the personal reactions? Is this something like a test?

Brandon Sanderson

He did see the same visions. They were the same thing. But... I will say that his reaction to them were very different from Dalinar's reactions to them. Anyway it was difficult for the Stormfather without a bond to determine/to tell the difference between very easily. When Spren are bonded, they gain a lot more ability to understand the world around then, so you'll find out soon more stuff about this in the third book.

JordanCon 2018 ()
#20 Copy


How do visions in the cosmere work? And I'm thinking Realmatically.

Brandon Sanderson

So almost always [it's] glimpsing into the Spiritual Realm. But you are often seeing it through the Cognitive, and so like a vision that...

So like the vision that Dalinar sees. What's going on is-- being pulled, and kind of stretched a little bit through the Realms, into the Spiritual Realm.  Where a Cognitive construct is adding a framework to seeds that are set in place.


So that you can kind of comprehend the Spiritual?

Brandon Sanderson

You can comprehend-- and also there's a little bit of a life to it. Meaning it can respond to you and things like this, to an extent. So imagine, it kind of works like an AI. Imagine there's some-- You've got that power in the Spiritual Realm and you're adding a framework to it, that it is shining through, and that is giving you the vision. Complicated, I know. Spiritual Realm is supposed to be weird, and we aren't supposed to quite comprehend it, but that's why we've got the Cognitive framework there.

General Reddit 2020 ()
#21 Copy


Yeah a shared vision with Navani would be pretty helpful. I assume the mechanism messing with the Radiants in the Tower would also mess with bringing someone into the vision. But then again, the pure Honor Surge Adhesion still works for Kaladin and aren't the vision tied directly with Honor?

Brandon Sanderson

It would have messed with such a vision, yes.