Re: Mad Scientists

From: Alex Ferguson <>
Date: Thu, 5 Oct 2000 15:02:08 +0100 (BST)

Graham Robinson:

> Alex Ferguson writes :
> > True, but the Mostali and the Malkioni aren't much deterred, and
> > persist in having a reductionist attitude to the Gloranthan otherworld,
> > with no small measure of success.
> Not entirely sure I'd agree. Both cultures see the reductionist as the
> ideal, and both have myths that this was so in the past. But they both also
> have myths as to how it was broken. This is most clear in the Mostali myths
> of chaos breaking the world machine. This seems to be a tacit
> acknowledgement that the current reality is not so reductionist.

Or that it hasn't been re-Reduced, perhaps. Certainly both the Brithini and the Mostali would see the world in those terms I think, and use the sort of feeble excuse RW scientists use about the bits that don't seem to work quite right, yet... Non-Brithini Malkioni may not be quite so hard-core about it, especially the crypto-theists crawling around in Loskalm...

> As for the God Learners, well, as
> you say, we don't really know. It is possible the Great Secret (TM) is in
> fact some scientific model of the other worlds - a Gloranthan general
> relativity, if you like. However that does seem rather boring.

I'm not sure that's the Secret, but that's explicitly what the Monomyth was trying to do, surely. More like QED than GR, perhaps... Certainly not much of a UF theory, judging by results!

> I drifted into this particular thread from a starting point of arguing with
> those trying to use real world scientific ideas to prove points in
> Glorantha. I really like the idea of Glorantha being a world where the
> underlying assumptions of RW science aren't true, and therefore any attempt
> to understand Glorantha using these tools is destined to failure. (This
> makes the God Learners a wonderful bit of evidence for my thesis...)
> Reasoning about a world where the trancendental is needed for all but a
> superficial understanding is, to me, part of the fun.

I largely agree. While not really a religious person myself, I do get annoyed at the very large tendency that seems to exist for people to say "RW religion is self-evidently nonsensical, but Gloranthan religion is way cool, so they clearly resemble each other not at all". Similarly though, I feel it would be overstating things to say that reductionistic thinking is completely invalid in Glorantha, and entirely successful in the RW... But it does seem clear that religious truths are more (evidently) true in Glorantha, and scientific ones less so, to put that in a rather weaker form.

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