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why were the terms of surrender so harsh for the primordials?

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  • #76
    Originally posted by mark View Post
    i don't see what's so wrong with sympathy for the yozis. before their imprisonment they represented beautiful transcendent principles(all except the ebon dragon who was always kind of a dick)
    it's not even the only book. for instance fallen races says that the jadeborn would at the very least seriously consider allying with the yozis if there was some way they might be restored to their non debased forms. return of the scarlet empress says "Once upon a time, there was chaos, and the light
    in that chaos was the King of the Primordials. His
    power and majesty shone over the early Creation as
    a bright green sun, beautiful and not yet mad"
    gunstar autochthonia also describes the empyreal chaos.. and he seems awesome TBH.
    i've also checked other books that mention the mutilation of the yozis.it seems to me that in some cases the exalted deliberately made them insane(for instance SWLIHN) to lessen them or thought it a tolerable trade of(like cecelyne or oramus)
    people will mention that the gods were their slaves..one has to consider though ,given how much the gods suck for the rest of creation without supervision..might it not be better if they have it given that the unconquered BUM and the rest of his club of losers won't do it? also,apparently there was a great amount of gods who remained loyal to the primordials. presumably they did not see themselves as slaves. it seems to me that the biggest oppressors of humanity back then were the dragon kings AKA the "kill people and sacrifice their hearth for any crime assholes) this seems less of a good vs evil to me and more of a "us vs them" thing. "Us" being the rise of humanity and the possibillity of exaltation.
    First, mad/insane is a relative term when dealing with things like the Yozi/Primordials/Neverborn. Even disregarding the 2nd ed thing where Auto was unique as a Primordial in being able to think outside of his theme; the human definition of sanity doesn't really work with beings freely capable of altering reality like they did. I mean the dragon beyond the world may or may not simulataneously predate his kin despite coming after all of them due to it's nature of being what others aren't. Isador got bored climbing a mountain that possessed neither peak nor base, but didn't want it said that it couldn't go somewhere over something as trivial as it not existing, so it stomped the ground and sent its hoofprint on ahead.. For the most part its generally accepted that the defeated Primordials went mad as a consequence of being themselves and then being in their prisons.

    Second, it isn't like anyone knew that overthrowing the Primordials would lead to something like the Age of Sorrows. I mean the most basic part where things went wrong involved the screwing up of reincarnation as a result of the The Underworld suddenly existing.* Again it also isn't like Creation was being taken because the Primordials couldn't defend or maintain Creation when they wanted to, but one does not make a slave race if on doesn't want/expect someone else to handle the daily rigmarole.

    From the perspective of the Primordials at the time the war would be like playing a board game and then having the pieces suddenly revolt because they don't want to play that game anymore. From the perspective of the gods in the revolt this was more like the board of directors firing the company's CEO due to the CEO being singularly responsible for 45% of the PR disasters and legal suits brought against the company. As far as the gods were concerned they had been running the world and removing the creators of the world would predominantly result in the loss of the problems and dangers that came from the Primordials which they viewed as an acceptable trade off against problems that might come from only having Gaia and Auto around.

    Not really much of an argument to say "clearly the Primordials were a better group than presented and the gods weren't their slaves because there were gods who fought for them." Many is the god who fought because a system without the Primordials might harm their position. (I imagine the god in charge of acquiring stuff for Ligier's forge would not have as much pull in the Celestial ranks sans a Ligier.) With others just because they didn't think the rebelling gods could actually win that fight. Happened in the real world too, instances of slaves fighting alongside their masters not because their masters were good people, but because they figured a rebellion would fail and being seen on the side of the rebellion would end poorly whereas one who sided with their owners at the very least avoided the fate of the rebels.

    *An incident so unprecedented I'm fairly confident I can ,without exagerration or concern of being wrong, say literally nobody saw it coming till it was happening.

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    • #77
      Originally posted by mark View Post

      this seems less of a good vs evil to me and more of a "us vs them" thing.
      ​Sure does.

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      • #78
        Originally posted by mark View Post
        i don't see what's so wrong with sympathy for the yozis. before their imprisonment they represented beautiful transcendent principles(all except the ebon dragon who was always kind of a dick)
        This kind of is again, dependent on particular source and such. Remember the original write-up of the Ebon Dragon isn't so much about being a dick, for instnace, as it being well...the shadow of every thing who has ever lived, who loves doomed things, destinies that will change the world, dark secrets, and by his nature wants to test the prison. The big thing is that the original creators of everything were well, big. Transcendence is not necesarily even beautiful. Folks I think kind of get caught up in this Abrahamic idea that your gods being powerful by defininition means they are also beautiful/something you'd want or are obligated to serve. I'm pretty sure they were awe-inspiring, but beautiful, like sanity, has some value proposiiton to it that isn't going to be consistent from person to person.

        Originally posted by mark View Post
        it's not even the only book. for instance fallen races says that the jadeborn would at the very least seriously consider allying with the yozis if there was some way they might be restored to their non debased forms. ...
        I argue this is more a bit of Exalted at times through its time trying to create drama/cheap sympathy for the splat of discussion by blackballing one of the other splats (Solars in this case wiht the Mountain Folk). I think that while I like the Jadeborn, they are probably a sign of a lot of what kind of shows too much emphasis of non-Exalted agency on the world and how it is down to Primordials doing things or affecting things, if that makes any sense.

        Originally posted by mark View Post
        ... return of the scarlet empress says "Once upon a time, there was chaos, and the light
        in that chaos was the King of the Primordials. His
        power and majesty shone over the early Creation as
        a bright green sun, beautiful and not yet mad"
        I don't think Return of the Scarlet Empress is a good source for mcuh of anything. It was also written so far along that it is more harping on what had been laid-out about the Hell and the Yozis discusseed by the Infernals take on them than really I think contributing ot hte idea that there's always been this take on them. The Green Sun thing and whatnot even has weirdness in canon and is why we had to have a bit of the ass-pull that Mafleas had two fetiches.

        Originally posted by mark View Post
        gunstar autochthonia also describes the empyreal chaos.. and he seems awesome TBH.
        Old Testament God is awesome in the like, historical sense, but can still very much be an asshole.

        Originally posted by mark View Post
        i've also checked other books that mention the mutilation of the yozis.it seems to me that in some cases the exalted deliberately made them insane(for instance SWLIHN) to lessen them or thought it a tolerable trade of(like cecelyne or oramus)
        How was SHLiHN made insane? The fact that she lost her temper and smashed spheres? I think that's more a hint that they while powerful, aren't so "transient' as to not get caught into petty stuff appropriate to mythic beings.

        Originally posted by mark View Post
        people will mention that the gods were their slaves..one has to consider though ,given how much the gods suck for the rest of creation without supervision..might it not be better if they have it given that the unconquered BUM and the rest of his club of losers won't do it? ...
        This is the argument of dictatorship and divine command theory (another form of dictatorship by another means IMHO). It's notable that the creators of the world weren't really interested in running things either and created servitors to do it for them so they could faff off in Heaven. Creation only mattered so much to them as well...whatever the hell titans matter in creation myths. We also don't know the extent that the Time Before was actually all that well ran. Apparently the gods had time to even plot to revolt after all, and for all we know gods, being people in a government, always had issues with corruption and graft. And the titans and their souls could probably were in on it too.

        An unstated assumption with folks who go all Primordial Aplogist is something of the "Well back in the day..." thing, not taking into account that we really don't know what "back in the day" was like, nor do we have much evidence to assume it was any better save some things ran better by the perspective of the folks in charge.

        Revolutions happen because people are often legitimately upset about something to well...revolt. The consequences of those revolts might not be too pretty, but like, take the French Revolution. The results were chaos, but that doesn't mean the peasants weren't actually starving and the monarchy wasn't wasting all the money. No one knew what would happen, all we know know is that it did happen.

        Originally posted by mark View Post
        also,apparently there was a great amount of gods who remained loyal to the primordials. presumably they did not see themselves as slaves. it seems to me that the biggest oppressors of humanity back then were the dragon kings AKA the "kill people and sacrifice their hearth for any crime assholes) this seems less of a good vs evil to me and more of a "us vs them" thing. "Us" being the rise of humanity and the possibillity of exaltation.
        Again, depends on edition. In 1e, the only canonical god not involved was Han-Tha and it was more because he was a god of something no one quite liked. But how many gods switched sides is moot since again, setting as we know it doesn't exist and we don't know whether those were gods that would have been something humans (the protagonists here) would have wanted around.

        That there was Benedict Arnold doesn't justify the British 100% afteral.


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        • #79
          @mark : Just because you end up siding with your oppressors doesn't mean you are incapable of feeling that they're oppressing you; it's pretty easy to stay "loyal" if you don't think a rebellion has a chance of succeeding and you can get mutilated for failure.
          Last edited by TheCountAlucard; 09-22-2017, 09:50 AM.

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          • #80
            Wait, are we ignoring that Theion's act of villian was "foment rebellion against me"? Like, he goes around making Jobs(ha) in order to beat them up. To prove he's still top king(Which is oddly reminiscent of his predecessor demanding constant assurances that he was real), and to get the nice feeling you get when you break the will of someone defiant.

            Like I like Theion as a setting thing. You know, as a sort of Superman-Arthur-YHWH guy. But he wasn't a better king then UCS (who's virtues and vices as king of heaven I'd ask we save for another discussion).


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            • #81
              Originally posted by Blaque View Post

              How was SHLiHN made insane? The fact that she lost her temper and smashed spheres? I think that's more a hint that they while powerful, aren't so "transient' as to not get caught into petty stuff appropriate to mythic beings.
              I agree with this.

              SHLiHN was always an evil bitch. In gunstar Autochthon she decided to take revenge on Autochthon by enslaving the entirety of the jadeborn by burning out their minds and replacing them with a hive mind enslaved to her will. She overminded them.

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              • #82
                I think it's viable to have sympathy for the Primordials without being an apologist for them, and that it's possible to see redeeming features in their... individualities (I guess?) as pseudo-sentient entities without feeling regret for rising up against them or even chaining 'em up forever.

                As a question of moral philosophy I'm definitely of two minds... at the very least the idea that the Primordials have a 'claim of authority' over sentient life is interesting even if it only requires us to question our own moral principles of ownership/authority. The fact that the Primordials are the "legitimate" owners of Creation and Heaven should call us to question later claims of Empire, from the Solars over the 1st Age to the Dynasty of contemporary play to our personal politics.

                On the other hand; law/justice/equity are uniquely human institutions created out of human need to cement peace out of competing interests. I wouldn't say the Primordials transcend these principles so much as they are alien to them. Attempting to umderstand justice and morality as it applies to something like a Primordial requires so many leaps of philosophy and/or moral thinking that to even scratch the surface in a meaningful way offers up an effort of mental hop-scotch so vast as to render the exercise moot.... Pontificating aside; if a hurricane was sentient and we could chain it for it's tramsgressions, what kind of defense would excuse its actions? What does a right to autonomy meam if those rights by necessity are often lethally dangerous to others? Would it make a difference if the Hurricane could feel regret or change its behavior?

                But all of these questions absolutely pale in comparison to the much more important fact that Exalted is a game. Person to person interaction is simply a vastly more tillable field for dramatic interaction in a role-playing affair. As interesting as applying arm-chair philosophy to vast and alien intelligences may be, Exalted as a game line is greatly improved by focusing almost exclusively on the conflicts between people and societies rather than between and among hypothetical semi-sentient hurricanes.


                Blasphemy? No, it is not blasphemy. If God is as vast as that, he is above blasphemy; if He is as little as that, He is beneath it.
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                • #83
                  I think that part of the subject needs to be analysed in a Doylist manner, in which we assess whether or not the degree to which the Yozis imprisonment is a matter of inflicting suffering on them is an especially useful thing to write, specifically because it draws too much energy to the idea of an ongoing moral debate about whether or not their imprisonment is justifiable. As an aspect of them that would threaten to consume all of the setting, it's almost as bad as giving them a gigantic scheme to escape and stomp all over the world.

                  ​At the same time, I would also incline against a presentation of the Yozis in which their original reign over Creation entailed a kind of eternal suffering, because I don't find that to be especially within the game's milieu; with its idea of what to make demons, and that the big existential threat from the Outside taking the form of fairy tale creatures and somewhat whimsical elfin folk, as well as the significance of antagonists such as the Realm and Sidereals, I find it to be that rare fantasy setting that elects to not provide straightforward conflicts in the form of large numbers of intrinsically, uncompromisingly antagonistic beings against whom one can run campaigns of unambiguous heroism.

                  ​I would still find an approach of framing the Primordials in terms intended to make the idea of overthrowing and imprisoning them unjustifiable to be putting a magnifying glass on parts of the setting that aren't really conductive to running the kinds of games that Exalted is best suited for.


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                  • #84
                    Originally posted by armyofwhispers View Post
                    I agree with this.

                    SHLiHN was always an evil bitch. In gunstar Autochthon she decided to take revenge on Autochthon by enslaving the entirety of the jadeborn by burning out their minds and replacing them with a hive mind enslaved to her will. She overminded them.
                    she was better than now because she was not incapable of empathy in its most basic sense. that is, she was able to comprehend that although other beings are(in her view) insane to value free will she ought to convince them of their error rather than force them to give it up.

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                    • #85
                      Originally posted by Epee102 View Post
                      Wait, are we ignoring that Theion's act of villian was "foment rebellion against me"? Like, he goes around making Jobs(ha) in order to beat them up. To prove he's still top king(Which is oddly reminiscent of his predecessor demanding constant assurances that he was real), and to get the nice feeling you get when you break the will of someone defiant.

                      Like I like Theion as a setting thing. You know, as a sort of Superman-Arthur-YHWH guy. But he wasn't a better king then UCS (who's virtues and vices as king of heaven I'd ask we save for another discussion).
                      well at least unlike some god i could name he is not homophobic and sexist. so there is that. going back to the primordials/yozis not being able to act outside their nature, well this works both ways. for instance malfeas is like that because he is forced to act against what he cosmologically represents. also he is in constant pain. one could argue that if freed and uninverted he would not have a choice but to be better that now. presumably gaining a dot of temperance or even compassion too . not to mention that he'd probably have no choice but to immediately spawn a second fetich.
                      after all he still maintains the charm" a prince for the queen and two hearts as one" that birthed ligier as a second fetich. granted he would not be exactly like the empyreal chaos again of course.
                      personally i think that he would be a more "yang" version that his former self.

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                      • #86
                        Originally posted by mark View Post
                        she was better than now because she was not incapable of empathy in its most basic sense. that is, she was able to comprehend that although other beings are(in her view) insane to value free will she ought to convince them of their error rather than force them to give it up.
                        Wait what?

                        She literally burned the free will out of the jadeborn in a fit of rage and you call that "convincing them of their error?"

                        Where do you get the idea that she was somehow more empathetic in Gunstar? When have any of the yozi been capable of empathy with humanity? If they could empathize with humanity or even treat us as beings to be respected then the usurpation would be a very different thing to my mind.

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                        • #87
                          Originally posted by mark View Post
                          well at least unlike some god i could name he is not homophobic and sexist. so there is that.
                          ...Niether is UCS? We could have (somewhere else) a long discussion about the many, many interpertations of YHVH in the long, long tradition of Abrahamic faiths, but I didn't say Theion was worse than YHVH, now did I?
                          Originally posted by mark View Post
                          going back to the primordials/yozis not being able to act outside their nature, well this works both ways. for instance malfeas is like that because he is forced to act against what he cosmologically represents. also he is in constant pain.
                          Malfeas is the way he is because he failed his subjects and cannot bear to be imprisoned by lesser beings. Him being used to imprison his own kin is icing on that cake.
                          Originally posted by mark View Post
                          one could argue that if freed and uninverted he would not have a choice but to be better that now. presumably gaining a dot of temperance or even compassion too . not to mention that he'd probably have no choice but to immediately spawn a second fetich.
                          after all he still maintains the charm" a prince for the queen and two hearts as one" that birthed ligier as a second fetich. granted he would not be exactly like the empyreal chaos again of course.
                          personally i think that he would be a more "yang" version that his former self.
                          Predicting what,exactly, Malfeas would be after another mutilation is tricky because it's entirely based on circumstances. I'm not covinced he has the 2nd charm...since wouldn't he have used it if it allowed away out?After all, he tried Gorol's hair brained scheme. And who's to say a new malfeas wouldn't do exactly what he's wanted since he was first cut open like a fish.

                          UCS has problems as a king. Rather significant ones, depending on point of view. But at the least, the buerarcacy of heaven does not actively attempt to stir up rebellion in order to put it down. At least we have less mass destruction from the whims of insanely powerful and ambivalent deities.


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                          • #88
                            Originally posted by armyofwhispers View Post
                            Wait what?

                            She literally burned the free will out of the jadeborn in a fit of rage and you call that "convincing them of their error?"

                            Where do you get the idea that she was somehow more empathetic in Gunstar? When have any of the yozi been capable of empathy with humanity? If they could empathize with humanity or even treat us as beings to be respected then the usurpation would be a very different thing to my mind.

                            And the 'breeding akuma' planet. That's a thing in a world where the primodials won as well.


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