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Kellhus, Achamiam, and Emotion posted 05 August 2004 in The Warrior ProphetKellhus, Achamiam, and Emotion by Rellion, Candidate

By the title, you can probably already tell this will ramble, so bear with me. I have several thoughts I want to express about Kellhus as I just completed TWP, and still have them swirling about in my head. Also, lots and lots of spoilers. Stop reading if you haven't read TWP.

I had come to the conclusion about mid-2/3rds of the way through TWP that Kellhus is not a human being. I am not saying he is not a Homo Sapiens, but he does not contain any of the qualities or traits that indicate that he shares the human condition, that he is a person, a man, or something else we would identify with. By the beginning of Part 3, he had become to me what I would qualify as a 'thing'. This emotionless golem created by the Dunyain, uncaring of the consequences of its actions, so long that its inevitable goal was reached. The shortest path, as the Logos dictates.

As I read, I kept wanting or hoping for Kellhus to just stop and feel something, and be a human being and not a thing. I must credit Dr. Bakker for doing an excellent job of reinforcing Kellhus's lack of emotion during those scenes from his expression (describing a 'smile he did not feel' in one did wonders). I almost felt as he grew and gained in power that he was not fit to have any of it, that as beast as unreal as any of the Consult skin-spies he was just as unworthy to lead men. The Great Names seemed more honest in what they were than he was (even Conphas), and that's saying something. At least the failure, horror, or success of the Holy War would have been in the hands of men, flawed as they were, instead of being dragged like a dog on a leash by the hands of this thing that the hammers of Ishual's forges beat into the likeness of a man.

Achamiam always seemed to me to be the great protagonist of the book. He was the good man, human in his faults, and identifiable. I like the character of Achamiam a lot, and watching him mean for good but stumble and fail and falter he seems in retrospect to be such a perfect foil for Kellhus. He is the identifier of humanity, whereas Kellhus seems the rejection of it. I kept hoping that Achamiam would learn of the reality of what Kellhus was, as Cnaiur knew already.

Iothiah and Caraskand caused the two, as I read further, to push together suddenly even as Achamiam learned of Kellhus's betrayal. Achamiam lost much of what he had, unable to weep, eyes dry now to the suffering of others as Seswatha had protected him (and the Gnosis) during the interrogations by Iyolkus, while Kellhus lost control of his face, and finally wept, feeling grief (?), sorrow (?), pain (?), or loss (?) or some combination. Had Kellhus become more human? Had Achamiam truly lost some of what made him human?

I feel that I will have to read Thousandfold Thought to find out for certain. I eagerly anticipate it and will have to order it from a Canadian source as soon as it is published (darn not releasing in the US for many months Canadian publishers! Grr!). view post


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