From: Peter Metcalfe <metcalph_at_bigfoot.com>
Date: Fri, 21 Dec 2001 17:10:15 +1300

Peter Larsen

>On the other
>hand, it's clear that something went wrong with the EWF toward the
>end; a sort of moral rot set in.

Something did go wrong with the EWF but to claim it was the result of a "moral rot" is still wrong IMO. The record only shows the EWF being thrown back by numerous revolts and battlefield defeats rather than any internal decay (would you claim the Byzantine Empire fell because of internal decay?)

>Part of this was probably due to
>misunderstandings of draconic teachings -- the EWF, after all, did
>not seem to produce too many complete successes (Obduren the Flyer is
>the only one I know for sure actually reached the ultimate goal of
>escape from the transient world),

There were a lot more transcendees than just Obduren the Flyer. The Glorantha Book states:

         "Many of the first-established [draconists] had already
         passed out of spiritual contact into the cosmic dragon while
         the newcomers in the outlands had not yet even responded to
         the Waltzing and Hunting bands."
                         Glorantha Book p22-23.

         "[in response to the problems of the traditionalists, the]
         Converters, reversed their own increased sanctity to aid the
         suffering populace.  Some went among their nearest followers,
         hastening them out of physical reality [...]
                         Glorantha Book p23.

This doesn't sound like flawed draconic knowledge to me.

>As a
>whole, however, it seems likely that the leadership of the EWF at
>some point stopped pursuing the Draconic Absolute and began to rule
>for its own sake. That's what I meant by cynical.

I do not believe that they ever reached this point or even were close to it. The conquest of Dara Happa was essential for their grand plan of awakening the Grand Dragon yet it only lasted thirty - -five odd years. Are we to believe that while the EWF was victorious in conquering Dara Happa, it was still true to its founding aims while barely a generation later, it had sunk to corruption and depravity to such an extent that it was incapable of suppressing revolts?

An alternative way of looking at the alleged decadence and downfall of the EWF might be this. The Forwards Faction expended most of their spiritual energies in hastening the coming of the grand dragon. Their popular support began to dwindle due to difference between the exalted nature of the leaders and the little improvement in the nature of the masses. The leaders disturbed by this realize that the policies of the Forwards is unsustainable - eventually the populace will revolt for they will no longer believe the austere regime will lead to the promised "good times". The new way, the Here-and-Nows, decide on a more sedate pace of progress that enriches the masses to keep them happy.

> >Mystical entities can be worshipped (for example, see the Vithelan
> >High Gods).

> Nils is probably the person to answer this, but Vith refuses
>worship (How Vith Pacified the Antigods).

I didn't say Vith, I said the Vithelan High Gods and they are worshipped (cf the second part of the sacrifices list in Revealed Mythologies p54).

>I'll agree with you that the "damning" differences were probably a
>lot more subtle than I suggested (and possibly not clearly
>understandable to anyone except a fairly advanced draconic mystic),
>but I believe they were significant. Significant enough to prevent
>the Kralori from being eaten for a lot longer than the EWF managed.

Considering that the EWF had instruction from Godunya, I don't see how the EWF can be said to have missed the plot entirely. They met their end through being stabbed in the back by their supposed allies and not through an intrinsic flaw of their philosophy.

End of The Glorantha Digest V8 #633

Powered by hypermail