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Thread: Ok so we know Roland's world has moved on....

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    People in River Crossing didn't strike me as left behind. I think of them rather as of those who remained to preserve the basic values while everyone else rushed on along with the world.
    Isn't staying to preserve values while everyone else rushed on along the very definition of being left behind? And don't forget, they're all going to die off. They have no young people to carry on...their younger citizens all left. Moved on without them. I think the people of River Crossing are probably my favorite people in the series. They seem so sad and so real.

    Roland and his tet are hope like the threaded stock - it could be that three will be reversal because most of the inventions of the Old People cannot be used anymore.
    I think I would agree with this idea. Although I'm not sure reversal is the right word. It has been long enough that things have started to heal (someone else mentioned that earlier in this thread) and the moving on has slowed. The machines can no longer meddle. And as the moving on slows, the people can start to make the new world their own and move along with it. The only question is, how many people are left (at least in mid-world itself, not including the outer arc) that are capable of that? Or even capable of recognizing it?

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    Hmm I think your right - reversal isnt quite right. But yeah that beiong the case of that there is a potential for the world to heal -
    Spoiler:
    maybe Roland is on his last loop ?

  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by overhoser View Post
    Isn't staying to preserve values while everyone else rushed on along the very definition of being left behind?
    No, not really: I mainly wanted to emphasize the difference between "staying" and "being left"; active vs. passive.

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    Since I'm not sure how to properly handle responding to spoilers, I'll just put it all in spoiler tags:

    Spoiler:
    I'm not sure if it's his last loop, but it might be close. I think the return of the horn is a big clue that some bit (maybe a large bit) of redemption was earned in the loop we witnessed. The only problem with that is we don't really know how the loops work. Things change for Roland, sure. But when he's back at the beginning of the desert, has time passed? Or has the world been sort of reset to that point in time? Does the world continue to move on during and between loops or is it in the same state for each new loop? We'd need to witness another loop to learn that for sure, I think. Maybe that's a discussion for another thread.


    I mainly wanted to emphasize the difference between "staying" and "being left"; active vs. passive.
    You are correct. There is definitely a difference between staying and being left. But in the end, the difference is only semantic. The result is the same. The people try stay the same while everything around them degenerates. Whether they choose to remain or not doesn't affect the outcome, at least not in the case of River Crossing. I'm still trying to work out my thoughts about the residents of Lud.

  5. #55
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    overhoser: for me freedom of choice and ensuing ability to keep one's dignity (and dignity is what River Crossing is all about) makes all the difference, both in the beginning, the middle, and the end, and it is existential rather than semantic. I do not agree with the main premise, the one about the people not having changed. I think in a world that is moving on it takes a lot more than just being left behind to be able to still preserve one's humanity, dignity, and common sense - and both the River Crossing and the Lud community prove it, in their opposite ways.

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    If there has been some sort of fundamental change in the people of River Crossing, I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on what that change is. It seems to me that they have preserved their humanity and dignity by NOT changing. It's part of what makes them my favorite people in the whole series.

    The citizens of Lud are different. As I have acknowledged, they do not fit my claim. They HAVE changed - they moved on with the world. And by moving on they have lost much of their humanity and dignity (and in cases like Gasher, all of it).

    By the way, I am finding this discussion very engaging (to the detriment of my work), so please continue!

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by overhoser View Post
    If there has been some sort of fundamental change in the people of River Crossing, I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on what that change is. It seems to me that they have preserved their humanity and dignity by NOT changing. It's part of what makes them my favorite people in the whole series.
    Sorry if I didn't make myself clear enough; no, my main point was that though the people in River Crossing have not changed (I think that much is obvious) this very act of not changing and keeping the old values in a world that is moving on is an act of free choice and an act of will, that requires fortitude and perseverance, and doesn't happen by itself - thus I endeavoured to emphasize once again the not merely semantic difference between "stay" and "be left". What does happen by itself, however, is what happened to the rest of the population of the world, which has changed (and that is best proved by Lud, but can, to my mind, be seen everywhere else).

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    Ah, that makes more sense. And I would agree. It doesn't happen by itself, it takes a conscious effort. River Crossing has to work to remain. Perhaps "left behind" isn't the best way to describe them, it's just a phrase that I think demonstrates that they haven't changed while the world itself has. My main point has more to do with the difference between the people and the "world." The difference itself rather than exactly how that difference came about. Because I'm with you that it was a result of free will that left them behind. But being left or choosing to stay is still to be behind.

    Maybe "behind" is even a problematic word...but I can't think of another that evokes the sense of moving on.

    Also, it's not entirely clear what "the world" means. I think sickrose's point about magic and technology might be a good place to start figuring that out.

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    I think there is the wrold Roland remembers full of magic and gunslingers but then the Old People started experimenting with technology. Who are they and where did they come from ?

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    The world Roland remembers is one of magic, but also of technology. The great hall of Gilead had spark lights. So maybe there was move away from magic to technology and, upon finding that technology aged and failed, a return to magic?

    And I may be mis-remembering, but weren't there two sets of Old People? The ones that created the beams and the ones that built technology to support the beams? That may be wrong, but I seem to remember that from the Shardik encounter.

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    Thats true the Great hall did have lights - maybe the balance between magic and technology was lost thus causing the negative aspects of the world moving on.

    Not sure about there being 2 sets of old people - could be i cant remember

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    I found the passage that made me think there were two sets of old people, and it's more of an inference than anything concrete. So it's somwhere between mis-remembered and accurate.

    Nonetheless, here are some passages from The Waste Lands (signet mass market edition for page numbers) that I think might be of some interest to this thread. I think this whole section (57-114, with some diversions mixed in) is very important to the concept of the world having moved on.

    "Sometimes I heard that these portals were natural things. ... But other people ... said they were [I]not[I] natural, that they had been created by the Great Old Ones themselves, in the days before they hanged themselves with pride like a noose and disappeared from the earth. Hax used to say that the creation of the Twelve Guardians was the last act of the Great Old Ones, their attempt to atone for the great wrongs they had done to each other and to the earth itself" (p. 57).

    the first sentence of this next passage was the one I was remembering that made me think there were people before the Old Ones. You can probably see why I thought it in my memory, but reading it now, I'm not so sure my memory was serving me well:
    "The Great Old Ones didn't make the world, but they did re-make it. Some tale-tellers say the beams saved it; others say they are the seeds of the world's destruction. The Great Old Ones created the beams" (p. 10.

    "the forces which interlock and give the world its coherence -- in time and size as well in space -- are weakening. ... We had no idea what the end would be like. ... Yet now I am living in those times. ... The Beams are breaking down. I don't if that's a cause or only another symptom, but I know its true" (p. 111).

    So, hopefully those quotes offer some food for thought. There are more if you check out the whole section, but I won't post them here. I used to be member on a forum for another book and one member would post nothing but cryptic and obscure passages from the book with no other explanation. We all loved him, but I don't want to be him.

  13. #63
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    Hm. Also worth looking at, then, would be the passage early in Wizard and Glass where Eddie is convinced that people before the Great Old Ones had built the Hounds of the Falls.
    Quote Originally Posted by overhoser View Post
    That's true, Lud is an example of the people moving on along with the world. They degenerated along with the technology of their city. It definitely puts a hole in my thinking about the phrase.

    But there are more examples where that's not the case...Tull seemed to be carrying on. The red headed guy in the desert that was also in Mejis. River Crossing. The outer arc. All of these people have been left behind. Remnants of an earlier time, trying to maintain even as the world itself crumbled.
    If "moving on" means leaving behind, then it's presumably good to be an example where that's not the case. The question is, who or what exactly has left behind the old world, and would it really make any sense to infer that the changes in culture of the people of Lud places them in that category?

    I sometimes wonder whether "moving on" is a fitting term for other worlds like those of The Stand and Cell. I also wonder if the term might be meant to imply that a given world could have been somehow forgotten by God.

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    I am not sure. I always thought that moving on comes from within, with loss of consistency, of connections, of cultural and axiological correlations; ultimately, with falling out of all cultural contexts and, thus, loss of history, which isn't a result but one of the reasons of the moving on - much as what we're experiencing now. To my mind, The Stand shows just the opposite - how the world could survive its own end without moving on - because they persevered in preserving their cultural continuity.

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    I am not sure, either. But "moving on" perhaps does require survival of some kind.

    All pretty complicated.

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    I think the people of Lud are an example of moving along with the world, not those that have been "left." I'll start putting that word in quotes given the trouble it caused earlier.

    If "moving on" (however it happens) is a degeneration, as the quotes from TWL (and the longer section they come from) would indicate, then moving along with it would lead to the degeneration of the people. So, those in Lud have moved on while those in River Crossing have not (whether by choice or necessity).

    I'm with Jean on The Stand. The people made a move to prevent the world from moving on before it could get too far away from them.

    I do like the idea of the world being forgotten by God or some other force. Like in the phrase "the ___ that time forgot." Maybe that's it....time just forgot.

    side note: that's a great AC/DC quote from one of their best songs.

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    Thanks Overhoser for taking time to find the pasages - i see where you are coming from.

    Thos conversation has made me think a lot about the uni course I am doing at the moment. A lot ofthe Enlightenement thinkers were trying to apply enlightenemtn thinking to religion and one of the ideas they came up with - to explain the problem of evil - was that God created the word and then left us to our own devics sort of like a clockmaker.

    Pathof the turtle's comment brought this to mind.

    Sorry dont mean to send the conversation off on tangents.

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    I don't think enlightenment thought is necessarily a tangent.

    You mention evil, and it reminds me of Kant. I'll admit I am not a Kant expert. Given that disclaimer, Kant believes that "radical evil" comes from human choices gone wrong. It is an "inversion of maxims", a distortion or misdirection of our human will. The only way to overcome radical evil, for Kant, is a "change of heart" or a reordering of our principles. Since evil comes from human choice, it can only be overcome by human choice.

    So, if we think about the theory that the world moved on based on the Old Ones' use/abuse of technology, it was a choice they made. They brought radical evil into the world. Perhaps this happened by opening the portals? They used technology to open the portals and radical evil was able to move into and destroy their world. Flagg and Walter are able to easily move between worlds....maybe that didn't start until the Old Ones started messing with technology.

    But what needs to happen to overcome it? Does Roland represent the whole world's principles and choices? Does only Roland have to reorder his principles in order to overcome evil?

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    I am also no expert on Kant but what you say is interesting and does seem to have resonance.

    I think the portals already existed but only to people like the Manni who maybe could be 'trusted' with this kind of thing. However, I see your point about the choices they made bringing evil inbto the world.

    I think Roland does represent the old ways but his is a personal quest. Maybe his loop will stop when the world is ready and reordered its prinicples. Which, I think, is to maintain a balance between technology and magic and not assuming that everything needs to be understood and can be i.e the portals etc. Now i am thinking of Rouseau who felt that we should return to nature and simpler ways ( a really condensed idea of his philosophy) and I think in this case it is magic and the ways of the Old People.

    Thats said the fact i am studying it could cause me to be seeing things !

    Also I wonder what part John Farson had in the moving on ? What happended isnt described in detail but maybe in the Comics i havent read!

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    the fact i am studying it could cause me to be seeing things !
    Ha! Welcome to the world of academia.

    Maybe his loop will stop when the world is ready and reordered its prinicples.
    This is an interesting thought. If that's the case, though, his personal quest is dependent upon the choices of others, which I don't think is right. So, instead, maybe his quest isn't necessarily to find and then save the tower, but rather save the tower by having an impact on the world. By first redeeming himself, he can then know how to redeem others and, by extension, the world. Saving the tower an individual at a time. Maybe he draws a new three every time, giving them the chance at redemption. And once the right people have been redeemed, the tower begins to recover. Although, I think this line of thinking probably belongs in another thread.

    When it comes to the world having moved on...
    I think the portals already existed but only to people like the Manni who maybe could be 'trusted' with this kind of thing.
    You're probably right on that. Because in the passage I quoted a few posts ago, the Old Ones put the guardians there to atone for the wrongs they had done.

    oh, oh, I just thought of something. The very name of the Guardians...Guards are there to keep things out (or in). I think the injection of evil into the world had to have come from the portals and the guardians were set by the Oldies to keep it at bay. But they didn't work.

    Some said the guardians were the last act of the Oldies before they hanged themselves with pride in attempt to atone for wrongs they had done to each other and the earth. What were those wrongs? If the portals were always there, but only known of by people like the Manni, maybe the Oldies let the secret out.

    As far as John Farson goes, he may be a disciple or a symptom of whatever was let in. He was trying to bring a new order to the world (democracy). He was most likely a symptom....like the final seal being broken or something.

    Isn't Rousseau opposed to Kant? Aren't they usually opposites? So, if Kant's idea of choices and radical evil started the moving on process, perhaps Rousseau's belief in a return to nature is reordering of principles the world needs. That might be an odd/incorrect juxtaposition, but there it is nonetheless.

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    Quote Originally Posted by overhoser View Post
    the fact i am studying it could cause me to be seeing things !
    Ha! Welcome to the world of academia.

    Maybe his loop will stop when the world is ready and reordered its prinicples.
    This is an interesting thought. If that's the case, though, his personal quest is dependent upon the choices of others, which I don't think is right. So, instead, maybe his quest isn't necessarily to find and then save the tower, but rather save the tower by having an impact on the world. By first redeeming himself, he can then know how to redeem others and, by extension, the world. Saving the tower an individual at a time. Maybe he draws a new three every time, giving them the chance at redemption. And once the right people have been redeemed, the tower begins to recover. Although, I think this line of thinking probably belongs in another thread.

    When it comes to the world having moved on...
    I think the portals already existed but only to people like the Manni who maybe could be 'trusted' with this kind of thing.
    You're probably right on that. Because in the passage I quoted a few posts ago, the Old Ones put the guardians there to atone for the wrongs they had done.

    oh, oh, I just thought of something. The very name of the Guardians...Guards are there to keep things out (or in). I think the injection of evil into the world had to have come from the portals and the guardians were set by the Oldies to keep it at bay. But they didn't work.
    Ahh yes of course good point.

    Some said the guardians were the last act of the Oldies before they hanged themselves with pride in attempt to atone for wrongs they had done to each other and the earth. What were those wrongs? If the portals were always there, but only known of by people like the Manni, maybe the Oldies let the secret out.
    It could be something to do with ther war machines that FArson is trying to use against th Afffliation in W &G?

    As far as John Farson goes, he may be a disciple or a symptom of whatever was let in. He was trying to bring a new order to the world (democracy). He was most likely a symptom....like the final seal being broken or something. I agree.

    Isn't Rousseau opposed to Kant? Aren't they usually opposites? I think in the sense that he might be an Enlightenment Philosopher? So, if Kant's idea of choices and radical evil started the moving on process, perhaps Rousseau's belief in a return to nature is reordering of principles the world needs. That might be an odd/incorrect juxtaposition, but there it is nonetheless.
    This is exactly what I had in mind when I posted the last comment.

    Off topic but just in case you were wondering I am studying From Enlightenment to Romanticism with the Open university which I am really enjoying and it really started to resonant with the DT stuff we have been discussing in this thread.

    This might explain my references!

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    Off topic but just in case you were wondering I am studying From Enlightenment to Romanticism with the Open university which I am really enjoying and it really started to resonant with the DT stuff we have been discussing in this thread.
    I don't think this is off topic at all. TDT is clearly heavily influenced by philosophy, dealing with many of the kind of existential themes that people have been dealing with for years. I think referring to philosophy as a way to understand/think about what's going on is a smart approach.

    Yesterday I encountered a passage from Song of Susannah that gives some more information about the world moving on. From Mia and Susannah at the castle. I hope to post it as more food for thought maybe tonight if i get the time, it's kind of long.
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    [quote=overhoser;462900]
    Off topic but just in case you were wondering I am studying From Enlightenment to Romanticism with the Open university which I am really enjoying and it really started to resonant with the DT stuff we have been discussing in this thread.
    I don't think this is off topic at all. TDT is clearly heavily influenced by philosophy, dealing with many of the kind of existential themes that people have been dealing with for years. I think referring to philosophy as a way to understand/think about what's going on is a smart approach.


    Yesterday I encountered a passage from Song of Susannah that gives some more information about the world moving on. From Mia and Susannah at the castle. I hope to post it as more food for thought maybe tonight if i get the time, it's kind of long.
    I look forward to seeing your post. It's been a while since I read SOS.

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    It's been a while since I read SOS.
    Given your thoughts on the end of magic and the world moving on and this passage, I would bet it hasn't been that long...

    This comes from pp. 108-110. Mia is explaining that the beams "rose from the Prim on the airs of magic" and then men made machines. "When the age of magic passed, the age of machines came."
    They were great machines, but they were mortal machines. They replaced the magic with machines and now the machines are failing. ... The machines are going mad. You've seen this for yourself. The men believed there would always be more men like them to make more machines. None of them foresaw what's happened. This universal exhaustion.

    The world has moved on.

    It has. And left no one to replace the machines which hold up the last magic in creation, for the prim has receded long since. The magic is gone and the machines are failing.
    I think this section really sums up the theory of the world moving due to the turn away from magic, or from faith, toward rationality. More and more I'm starting to believe your theory. It's also interesting how this intersects directly with another project I'm working on about the debate between science/rationality and faith in our own world. So, see, talking about philosophers is totally on topic.
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    The above passage must have been what I was thinking about! I am looking forward to re-reading some of the later books.

    I guess you are right Overhoser maybe King was a big fan of Enlightenment philosophy. Your project sounds interesting.

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