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Thread: Gan=God? (Not a religious discussion) **Spoilers**

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    Last edited by razz; 07-18-2020 at 12:27 PM.

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    i tried to spoiler all the 'salem's lot giveaways but if i missed any would someone let me know (or the ptb can just spoiler them then slap me around later)? thanks.


    callahan doesn't actually use his cross against the vampires though. he uses his faith against them, and that's an entirely different thing.
    Spoiler:
    that's what got him into trouble in 'salem's lot remember? he tried to put his faith into a worldly object instead of where it belonged - a power higher than himself. he was arrogant and assumed that he deserved to be saved and that a simple piece of wood and plastic would do it.


    the power of the cross comes from the belief that the cross has power, just like the power of any religious symbol. for father callahan, the cross is a symbol of the relationship between man and god. for me, the star of david has power because i believe in it and its power; the torah has phenomenal power because i believe in it and its power.

    father callahan's different beliefs controlled whether the cross had any effect. he was such a different man in the lot. a drunken, arrogant, foolish man who pretended to be someone and something he was not. in the calla he was a more sober (in every sense of the word) man. less eager to pretend and more willing to sit back and watch and listen.

    i think that the father callahan who was sober and really, firmly grasped the idea that there was a power higher than himself (be it god, gan, the turtle, the bear, whatever) was willing and able to throw aside the cross and stand on his own. but when that happened, he wasn't on his own.
    Spoiler:
    in the lot, even holding the cross, he was on his own. he was abandoned by god because he had abandoned god.


    as for whether gan is god. i don't know. i know if gan is god he's not the catholic god - or not just the catholic god. i think perhaps he's all things to all people. he is what he needs to be when he needs to be it. for some he's a bear, for some he's a turtle, for some he's a shining white light, for others he's the big sky daddy. am i making any sense?

    and razzle, there's no way this is not going to turn into a religious discussion on some level. but i think we're really discussion father callahan's religion. mayhap the religion of the entire series.

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    it means there is A god but not necessarily a definable god since the cross failed,
    if the worlds gonna end then let's get it over with, i got shit to do

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    but did the cross fail
    Spoiler:
    or did father callahan in the lot i mean?
    cause it sure didn't fail in the dixie pig now did it? and neither did the fadda!

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    The cross never failed. The man did. Callahan.

    (and I respect and love him so much that he could stand up)

    Roland would have understood.

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    I don't think Gan is God, or even the equivalent of God.

    If you consider that all possible worlds exist on some level of the Tower, then God would be an entity that resides within those worlds, therefore within the Tower - so Gan is a vessel containing all beliefs rather than being another facet of a particular deity.

    I think within the Prim though, there is no hiearchy (sp?). I think the Prim are collectively and also individually powerful.

    As for giving a reason why the cross/his faith worked for Callahan in the Dixie Pig, well in that where and that particular society (ie, ours) God is an existing concept - so he just tapped into what he believed was there.

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    you know, i probably worded this wrong, but i really have no clue how to explain what i mean.

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    I get that all the time.

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    She gave me a pen. Ves'Ka Gan is on a distinguished road Ves'Ka Gan's Avatar

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    Very interesting topic!

    Forgive me for referenceing a completely different series to answer your question about the DT series, but in The Dresden Files Harry often makes the point that any faith is strong enough to work against the bad stuff. His faith rests in his family, so the amulet his mother gave him works for him, a priest would use a cross--it is the SYMBOL of the faith inside the man...(i.e. Harry couldn't use a cross and a priest couldn't use his amulet).

    As for the Gan=God question. Good one. I often use the phrase "God, 'The Universe' or whatever higher power you believe in" when talking to people because it is *my* belief that God, Allah, The Universe, etc. are all the same entity, just understood differently. So on that basis, I would say that yes, Gan is the same as the Catholic God, or the Mormon God, Vishnu or Allah.
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    nice reference to the dresden files ves!

    and actually you used harry dresden to say in many fewer words exactly what i was trying to express so thanks!

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    I Harry Dresden...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ves'Ka Gan View Post
    Very interesting topic!

    Forgive me for referenceing a completely different series to answer your question about the DT series, but in The Dresden Files Harry often makes the point that any faith is strong enough to work against the bad stuff. His faith rests in his family, so the amulet his mother gave him works for him, a priest would use a cross--it is the SYMBOL of the faith inside the man...(i.e. Harry couldn't use a cross and a priest couldn't use his amulet).

    As for the Gan=God question. Good one. I often use the phrase "God, 'The Universe' or whatever higher power you believe in" when talking to people because it is *my* belief that God, Allah, The Universe, etc. are all the same entity, just understood differently. So on that basis, I would say that yes, Gan is the same as the Catholic God, or the Mormon God, Vishnu or Allah.
    Well said!
    The cross is simply a symbol, something to focus the faith onto. And anyone can use anything to symbolize their faith; and as long as their faith is true and strong, the symbol has power.

    As far as Gan=God...
    from what I understood from the DT series, Gan is the power of creation. All the grace and power that goes into creating something is the grace and power of Gan.
    To me, this power is more believable as 'God' than any of the gods that organized religions put their faith into.
    I cannot believe that there is only one true image or understanding of god, any more than I can believe there is only one type of creation.
    That would be like saying there is only one true understanding of music or art, which is ridiculous, imho.
    Last edited by ladysai; 11-16-2008 at 09:31 AM. Reason: trying for clarity

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    Quote Originally Posted by razz View Post
    you know, i probably worded this wrong, but i really have no clue how to explain what i mean.
    I'll only roughly sketch what I think, - because someone who is very dear to me asked me to; sorry for not being able to detail it at the moment:

    1. I think you worded it very well. That's how I understood the question: is the book written the way that makes us suspect the writer believes there is a God? I think a positive answer to this is obvious.

    2. This next
    Is the Catholic god equivalent to Gan, are they the same entity?
    is less obvious, - in fact, rather personal. Being a Catholic myself, I have always regarded this story as deeply Catholic (yes, I do know that, although a Christian, Sai King belongs to a different denomination, but I have always been sure that author's intentions don't matter shit: it's only the result that counts), and nothing in it ever clashes with my system of views in any way. I think (again, whatever his intentions) Sai King accurately described what the notion of religion in a world that has moved on so far that all coherency and consistency have been lost - of historical, cultural, and religious tradition first of all - and only some flotsam and jetsam are cast ashore; hence the eclecticism, paganism resurrected (for example, the archaic, primeval idea of "Gan's flesh"), inconsistence and often ridiculousness of those half-resurrected half-forgotten vestiges of beliefs. Answering your question (is Gan Catholic God?) - yes, for me he is, as people living in a world that has moved on could see and understand him.

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    When one is in agreement with bears one is always correct. (mae)

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    one can interpret anything one wants to be about either sex or god lol
    but one of the things i like about the dark tower is how it is a deeply spiritual story (good for me) but it doesnt pick a denomination/ specific faith which is something i would not have appreciated, its one of the reasons i was never a big cs lewis fan cause he kinda crammed christian allegory (which to a non christian is the same as catholic allegory- they all seem pretty much the same lol) down the readers throat especially in narnia
    Sai King didnt go so far as tolkien did in his no recognizing faith- middle earth has no church, a fact that pissed of cs lewis who was one of his friends to no end, sai king basically says "yeah theyre all here, from variations on christianity to lovecraft-based chaos magick, that was really cool how all gods kinda exist simultaneously in the dark-tower worlds
    if the worlds gonna end then let's get it over with, i got shit to do

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jean View Post
    paganism resurrected (for example, the archaic, primeval idea of "Gan's flesh"), inconsistence and often ridiculousness of those half-resurrected half-forgotten vestiges of beliefs.
    Most of that paganism was a lot more prevalent and practiced in Mid-World than Christianity, so there was no "resurrection", it was already there.
    "It's his eyes, Roland thought. They were wide and terrible, the eyes of a dragon in human form" - Roland seeing the Crimson King for the first time.

    "When the King comes and the Tower falls, sai, all such pretty things as yours will be broken. Then there will be darkness and nothing but the howl of Discordia and the cries of the can toi" - From Song of Susannah

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    I may be accidentally repeating someone else's point, but I don't think this has been clearly stated in this thread.


    Gan IS the Tower. The Tower is Gan. Whatever Gan is, The Tower is Gan's physical representation.

    Gan is a "God" of some type, but I don't think Gan is neccesarily the only "God" of Stephen King's multiverse. Maturin The Turtle obviously has a role in that.

    It's said in Book 7 and it's said in Bev Vincent's "The Road To The Dark Tower" that The Dark Tower IS Gan.

    To me that adds a lot of meaning that some people might not have caught onto. When Roland means to boldly walk into the Tower and demands it open before him, he is speaking directly to Gan.

    A presumptuous tone to take with Gan, regardless of who Roland is.... and one of many reasons why Gan chose to push him through the turnstile just one more time...

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    diggity that's what i've been saying in other threads. roland is one arrogant motherfucker. no matter how much we might like him, we must acknowledge this character flaw; and he must as well if he is ever going to get anywhere other than here.

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    The tower is Gan?
    Well then,
    My response was waaaay off, wasn't it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ladysai View Post
    The tower is Gan?
    Yep. It is.
    "It's his eyes, Roland thought. They were wide and terrible, the eyes of a dragon in human form" - Roland seeing the Crimson King for the first time.

    "When the King comes and the Tower falls, sai, all such pretty things as yours will be broken. Then there will be darkness and nothing but the howl of Discordia and the cries of the can toi" - From Song of Susannah

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    Quote Originally Posted by ladysai View Post
    The tower is Gan?
    Well then,
    My response was waaaay off, wasn't it?
    No, it wasn't.

    Ask not what bears can do for you, but what you can do for bears. (razz)
    When one is in agreement with bears one is always correct. (mae)

    bears are back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    But, if the tower was Gan,
    then Gan isnt a creative force/entitiy as I thought.
    Or is he? (it?)

    I've never been able to see any kind of divinity in an object, so the idea of Gan being the tower doesn't compute in my brain.
    I could vaugely understand the relics of saints and such being seen as holding some power of faith, or divinity;
    but, I can't see any god-like attributes of the tower.

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    It depends on the meaning of "is" in the sentence "The Tower is Gan". For me, "is" = "represents in the collective consciousness of people living in a world that has moved on"

    Ask not what bears can do for you, but what you can do for bears. (razz)
    When one is in agreement with bears one is always correct. (mae)

    bears are back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    No no, you were right. Your response was not off.

    Gan is the creative force in the universe, he is the one who set all this in motion, and he is omnipresent to some extent but his physical representation is the Tower, which is why if the Tower fell then Gan would die.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ladysai View Post
    but, I can't see any god-like attributes of the tower.
    That's because we don't know much about everything it does in the series. But as Roland says at one point, (paraphrasing) "All things serve the Beam the saying goes, but all things really serve the Dark Tower".
    Ladysai, you really should check out the graphic novel series mythology back stories when you get a chance, it talks all about origin of the Dark Tower/Gan, and the Crimson King and the worlds.
    "It's his eyes, Roland thought. They were wide and terrible, the eyes of a dragon in human form" - Roland seeing the Crimson King for the first time.

    "When the King comes and the Tower falls, sai, all such pretty things as yours will be broken. Then there will be darkness and nothing but the howl of Discordia and the cries of the can toi" - From Song of Susannah

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by All_Hail_The_Crimson_King View Post
    Ladysai, you really should check out the graphic novel series mythology back stories when you get a chance, it talks all about origin of the Dark Tower/Gan, and the Crimson King and the worlds.
    I'd like to, when I have the chance. Our library doesn't have graphic novels of any kind, and buying them is out of my budget at the moment.

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