2021-06-06 - The Virtue of Temperance (log)

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The Virtue of Temperance was a guided discussion led by Alosaka for the Silver Gryphons, consisting of three parts: a newly presented Tehiri legend about a cruel warrior, The Half-Perfect Sword; a brief lecture on the chivalric virtue of Temperance; and an extended Q&A session with the audience.

The Virtue of Temperance

This log is from the Order of the Silver Gryphon's presentation on Temperance by Alosaka on 6 June, 2021, from his viewpoint.


[Hearthstone, Front Porch]
Airy and open, the porch is enclosed by smooth, freshly painted white modwir up to a height of about four feet.  As you ponder the sky-blue color of the ceiling and a lacework of deep green ivy that crisscrosses the open space between posts, the hubbub of the world beyond quickly fades away.  Rocking chairs of various sizes are an inviting sight, and an elegant green marble arch provides a tantalizing view of the splendors inside the old manor.  You also see a massive snowy battle-scarred lynx, the Mauss disk, a black-eared red and grey fox that is sleeping, a slender brown fox with oversized paws, the Vaikhen disk, a coy forest spirit that is flying around, a slice of crisply cooked bass, the Alosaka disk, the Koergun disk, the Roelaren disk, the porch steps, a doorman, a purple modwir bin and a scorched oak sideboard with some stuff on it.
Also here: Sir Geijon, Dalinsia, Falicor, Goldstr, Elbromo who is sitting, Aeith who is sitting, Mauss who is sitting, Lord Perivan, Phanna who is sitting, Squire Legionnaire Agathilea, Envoy Vaikhen, Meril, Draught, Sanfey, Yukito who is sitting, Defender of Mist Harbor Akenna, Darcena who is sitting, Delindra who is sitting, Seaward Koergun who is sitting, Tabubu who is sitting, Roelaren, Defender of Mist Harbor Teaberry, Kothos who is sitting, Lord Khazaann, Mykon, Guarrin
Obvious paths: none

Guarrin says, "Right, I think we can get started then."

Falicor whistles tunelessly to himself.

Geijon waves to you.

You nod respectfully at Guarrin.

You clear your throat.

Koergun turns an inquisitive ear toward you.

Speaking to Vaikhen, Sanfey asks, "More than you'd think, I expect... but then.. that sort tends to be... temperate... in their expression of their opinions,no?"

Phanna smiles at Guarrin.

Tabubu takes a moment to observe you.

Sanfey smiles slightly.

Vaikhen grins at Sanfey from ear to ear.

Guarrin clears his throat.

Vaikhen nods once at Sanfey.

You turn to face Guarrin.

Guarrin says, "Alright folks, let's settle in."

Kothos nods at Guarrin.

Sanfey turns to face Guarrin.

Kothos gazes into your eyes.

Guarrin folds his hands behind his back.

Khazaann turns an inquisitive ear toward you.

Guarrin greets, "Thank you for joining us tonight. The Order of the Silver Gryphon is pleased to present Alosaka and a discussion on temperance."

Tabubu turns an inquisitive ear toward Guarrin.

Geijon smiles.

Guarrin says, "Our Order is focused upon defense of the Landing and its people. However, we also strive to serve with Honor, By Example and by Deed. These discussions are an example of those efforts."

Aeith smiles.

Guarrin says, "Tonight, Alosaka has a presentation planned, but afterward, perhaps we will have time to open for a wider discussion."

Sanfey nods slowly.

Phanna smiles.

Guarrin says, "As ever, we are eager to discuss these, and other topics with those in our community."

Geijon grins.

You nod.

Guarrin nods encouragingly to you.

Phanna gazes with interest at you.

The Half-Perfect Sword

You exclaim, "Thank you all for coming tonight. I know it's been a busy day!"

Vaikhen chuckles.

Kothos chuckles to himself.

You say, "Before we get into the discussion, I want to share a story with you."

Falicor nods in agreement to you.

You say, "A Tehir story from their Age of Myths, when the Sea of Fire was the whole world, and legends like the great shaman Namrul abu Sana still lived among the People."

Delindra nods at Darcena.

Phanna smiles at you.

Draught stands up.

Delindra smiles.

Delindra tilts her head toward you, examining you intently as the tip of one ear twitches briefly.

Agathilea folds her hands.

Kothos smiles at Akenna.

You say, "In those days, the Tehir knew the secrets of metalworking, but the desert had no natural metals. They would sometimes find veins of copper in the rocks, or veil iron fallen from the stars, and they would cold-work these into little knives or axes. But for weapons they relied on shaped flint, or fire-hardened spears, or yierka bones."

Akenna smiles at Kothos.

You say, "Into one of the People's tribes was born in those days a great warrior. Even as a child he was enormous and strong. And he knew it."

Elbromo turns an inquisitive ear toward you.

Sanfey cocks her head at you.

You say, "When he wrestled the other children, he enjoyed hurting them. He would break their arms and call it an accident. When training with spears he would shatter them against his opponents' heads and laugh."

You shake your head.

Sanfey frowns.

Delindra flinches.

Vaikhen clenches his jaw.

Agathilea furrows her brow.

Tabubu's eyes crinkle slightly at the edges.

You say, "As he grew older, and became a man and a warrior for his tribe, all feared him. He looked like a giantman, out in the fields, in the sand dunes. And his natural gifts were such that he didn't spend much time practicing with the spear or the axe."

You say, "Why bother? His raw strength, and the fear he kindled in the hearts of his foes, that was all he needed."

You cock your head.

Dalinsia furrows her brow.

Sanfey shakes her head, clucking her tongue.

You say, "But, and I think you know where this is going... soon enough the other warriors learned that our hero, this giant, wasn't a master of battle. Strong, yes, but unskilled."

Kothos takes a moment to observe you.

Goldstr grins at Khazaann.

Vaikhen smiles slightly.

You say, "And you might think, "Well, all this warrior has to do is train! Learn from his betters, and become a true warrior." And that is true -- he could have become one of the greatest warriors of all time. A legend for the ages."

You nod.

Guarrin nods in agreement at Dalinsia.

You say, "But he didn't. For he was a cruel man, convinced of his own strength. He believed -- he KNEW -- that he deserved to be feared as the greatest warrior of all time. But, of course, he was weak where it mattered. Here."

You place a hand over your heart.

Akenna takes a drink from her fresh apple cider.

You say, "And so..."

Sanfey nods once.

You lean forward.

You say, "One night, as he went to bed, he closed his eyes and made a wish, to whoever might be listening. And he begged for the gods to give him a weapon worthy of his strength. A weapon that would show all the world that he was the greatest warrior of the Age."

Sanfey murmurs, "...courage."

Aeith ponders.

Koergun breathes in deeply as he clenches a pipe in his mouth, then exhales slowly, causing some darkened amorphous clouds of puffy smoke to float up from his mouth.

You say, "And when he woke, he found the most wondrous thing awaiting him. On the blankets beside him, resting there like a lover, was a long obsidian blade, curved in the style of the Tehir. It was beautiful, and polished, and smelled like blood."

Agathilea looks thoughtfully at you.

You remove a knapped obsidian blade hilted with a wrapped elk hoof from in your ivory satchel.

You say, "This is not the same blade, of course. But it might have looked something like this."

Vaikhen leans forward.

(Alosaka tilts the blade in his hand, and gives it a few experimental swings. The weapon is so heavy the tip sags a bit, and he quickly recovers it to a safer grip.)

Agathilea nods to you.

Kippe nods slightly at Kothos.

Aeith leans back.

Guarrin ponders.

Sanfey looks closely at your obsidian blade.

You softly say, "They had never seen a weapon like this before. Sharper than anything in the entire Sea of Fire. Hard as diamond. A piece of night, given terrible form."

Phanna gazes with interest at you.

Delindra shivers.

Yukito folds his hands in his lap.

You say, "And with his blade, our warrior did indeed become great. But while the weapon was serviceable, it was only perfect against soft targets. Animals, unarmed warriors. Women. Children."

Vaikhen frowns.

Sanfey winces.

You quietly say, "Especially children."

Tabubu takes a moment to observe you.

You glance at a knapped obsidian blade hilted with a wrapped elk hoof and rub your chin thoughtfully.

A pained expression crosses Aeith's face.

Dalinsia's eyes crease slightly downward.

Kothos stares at you.

Koergun frowns.

You say, "And the warrior became a legend indeed. A monster who walked across the world, slaughtering any of his tribe's enemies. But only the women and children and the defenseless. All the others, the warriors, he left to his brothers to defeat."

Guarrin scratches at his beard.

Sanfey cocks her head.

You say, "And this might have lasted forever, until one day the warrior was about to celebrate his latest victory against a young woman who trembled at his feet. Behind her cowered all the children of her village, and soon he would defeat them too."

You say, "Ah, but..."

You smile.

With a guarded expression, Koergun releases a bark of discontent.

You say, "This woman wore, on her doeskin jerkin, some decorations. Little tiles of turquoise, about the size of your thumbnail, as blue as the sky above the sands."

You tilt your head down.

(Alosaka considers his thumbnail for a moment, then shrugs.)

You say, "And the warrior's blade struck her jerkin, right where these little turquoise tiles were stitched onto it... and the blade snapped off at the hilt."

Vaikhen blinks.

Delindra gasps.

Sanfey smirks.

Phanna takes a drink from her rich dark cognac.

Goldstr grins.

You say, "For obsidian, while sharp, and hard as diamond, is as brittle as glass."

Sanfey nods slowly.

Elbromo frowns.

Vaikhen ponders.

You say, "And they say that the warrior, after his blade was broken, was defeated shortly thereafter. By the children, I like to imagine."

You smile.

Koergun emits a noise that is a combination of laughter and barking, his eyes trained on you and full of amusement.

Dalinsia grunts.

You say, "Friends, we are here to talk about Temperance."

Aeith grins.

Kothos starts chuckling at you!

Meril cocks her head.

You grin.

Khazaann rubs his mithril forging-hammer.

Speaking quietly to himself, Kothos says, "Clever."

Tabubu leans forward and rests her chin in her hand, a thoughtful expression on her face.

Sanfey folds her arms over her chest.

Goldstr mutters hide-yer-drinks.

On Temperance

You say, "While I have a few things to say about it, I hope you will feel free to chime in or ask questions at any point."

Roelaren smiles at you.

Draught glances at a cup of fresh apple cider on a scorched oak sideboard.

You say, "Temperance is moderation of our appetites, our passions, even our thoughts. It is the wellspring of discipline and duty. And though we often overlook it, Temperance is just as important as Courage, Wisdom or Justice."

Roelaren pours herself a wide flagon of blueberry ale.

Elbromo smiles.

Faerinn raises his chilled plum wine in a toast!

Perivan takes a drink from his cold spring water.

You clear your throat.

Roelaren takes a drink from her ruby red wine.

Kothos smiles quietly to himself.

Phanna nods in agreement to you.

Vaikhen appears to be trying hard not to grin.

Falicor picks up a wide flagon of blueberry ale.

Faerinn takes a drink from his chilled plum wine.

You say, "A man or woman who lacks temperance is a slave of their own desires. They eat without abandon. They drink themselves into stupors. They chase after carnal pleasures until they are ruined."

Falicor takes a drink from his blueberry ale.

Kothos takes a drink from his rich dark cognac.

(Alosaka considers the obsidian blade in his hand. He runs his thumb along the edge, then winces slightly.)

Elbromo nods at Geijon.

You tap a knapped obsidian blade hilted with a wrapped elk hoof, which is in your right hand.

You say, "For those who lack temperance..."

You say, "When given the opportunity to train, to become better versions of themselves, they cannot take it."

You say, "They cannot control themselves."

Darcena looks thoughtfully at you.

You say, "As some of you know, I recently took up the art of forging weapons, and as part of that I learned how to temper steel."

Kothos looks thoughtfully at you.

Roelaren smiles at you.

You say, "Both words, in the common language used by the Empire, derive from the same root. To temper something is to give it temperance."

Jaysehn takes a drink from his warm sylvan brandy.

Speaking to you, Sanfey says, "...an apt analogy."

Khazaann smiles at you.

You say, "Tempering a blade occurs after you quench it for hardness. Tempering slowly heats the blade, then slowly cools it, easing out all the cracks and flaws that might cause it to shatter."

Kothos smiles at Phanna.

Roelaren just opened a leaf-embroidered bright crimson backpack.

Agathilea nods in agreement.

You gaze thoughtfully at your obsidian blade.

You say, "You cannot temper obsidian. It is what it is, as our warrior learned to his regret."

Aeith nods.

Jaysehn takes a drink from his warm sylvan brandy.

You say, "But, fortunately, we are not obsidian."

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "If his blade had been forged from steel, and his courage and skill up to his strength..."

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "Your story would have had a different tone."

You nod at Kothos.

Sanfey agrees with Kothos.

Vaikhen frowns.

Vaikhen nods.

Speaking to Kothos, you say, "Perhaps a better one? Though only if his soul were stronger than his blade, I think."

Koergun takes a drink from his rich dark cognac.

Kothos smiles at Dirra.

Geijon begins chuckling at Guarrin!

You say, "For no matter how sharp, or how hard a blade is, if it has not been tempered, it will shatter at the first strong blow."

Faerinn takes a drink from his chilled plum wine.

Speaking to you, Sanfey asks, "Likewise a soul, no?"

Koergun nods understandingly to you.

(Alosaka flicks the obsidian blade with his fingertip, letting it ring quietly like a crystal glass.)

You nod at Sanfey.

The wall of force disappears from around Dirra.

Tabubu tilts her head in Sanfey's general direction, the folds of her hood obscuring her expression from view.

Kothos looks thoughtfully at you.

Dirra whispers something to Mauss.

You say, "Indeed. The virtue of Temperance is to our soul, what tempering in the forge is to steel."

Perivan takes a drink from his cold spring water.

Delindra ponders.

You say, "In some sense, we are all of us warriors. We all fight for something. And to be the best warrior, or healer, or even storyteller, requires dedication."

You say, "It means passing on simple pleasures, sometimes. It means enduring pain now, when you are safe, so that you will not crack later when you experience pain for real."

Sanfey rubs her chin thoughtfully.

Teaberry nods slowly.

You say, "The soul that is tempered can withstand defeats, injuries and failures without cracking. A soul with temperance can endure where others will fail."

Vaikhen ponders.

You say, "Now, some of you may know the ancient elven symbol for Temperance."

Phanna nods slightly at Kothos.

Chamorr heartily says, "I heard there was drinks."

Guarrin points at a scorched oak sideboard.

Tabubu shifts her weight.

You say, "A maiden emptying a jug of wine into a jug filled with water. It symbolizes watering down the wine, making it less potent."

Kothos smiles at Phanna.

You say, "As you might imagine, for this reason, Temperance is not considered as exciting a virtue as, say, Courage."

Vaikhen chuckles.

You chuckle.

Aeith grins.

Vaikhen nods.

Goldstr grins at you.

You say, "But Temperance does not mean to forgo all pleasures. It does not mean you must always be dour and unsmiling forever."

Chamorr heartily says, "Did they stone her."

Dirra nods to you.

You say, "But it does mean knowing when to stop eating, or drinking. When to rest. When to study, when to train. When to say no to pleasure."

Elbromo smiles.

Sanfey says, "...untempered courage easily turns into aggression..."

You say, "Temperance means to rule yourself, and although we will never celebrate a hero for being the most Temperate man or woman of his age, we should never forget to look inward, and seek that virtue inside ourselves."

Speaking to herself, Dirra says, "A path to balance."

Aeith agrees with Sanfey.

The brilliant luminescence fades from around Geijon.

You smile.

Guarrin nods once.

You say, "And that concludes my prepared remarks! I invite any questions or thoughts you may have."

Kothos smiles at you.

Koergun applauds you.

Sanfey bows to you.

Guarrin gives a sidelong glance at Darcena.

Vaikhen applauds you politely.

Agathilea applauds you.

Guarrin applauds you politely.

Phanna smiles at you.

Faerinn takes a drink from his chilled plum wine.

Phanna applauds politely.

Vaikhen hoots at you.

Delindra smiles.

Speaking to you, Sanfey says, "Very thought provoking. Thank you."

Dalinsia grunts.

Falicor raises his hand.

Jaysehn smiles.

Dirra applauds you.

Dalinsia nods approvingly to you.

Jaysehn takes a drink from his warm sylvan brandy.

Yukito applauds you.

Elbromo applauds you.

Questions and Answers

[Note: Everything except dialogue has been stripped from this section for length and clarity.]

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "I am sure you expect me to disagree with you, but in truth, I do not.  I believe there is something to be said about learning control."

Evia says, "Perhaps the maiden merely wished to fortify the jug of water with a bit of spirit."

Guarrin says, "Right. It seems we have a question from Falicor first."

Guarrin says, "Folks if you raise your hands, I'll put you in the queue."

Speaking to Falicor, Guarrin asks, "You had a question?"

Faerinn muses, "Adding alcohol to the water is a way to make sure it is safe to drink."

Speaking to you, Falicor asks, "Can you speak on the  merits of a less restrictive brand of temperance than you have discussed?"

Falicor says, "There are many who might say true temperance is to fully asbtain from violence in both action and mind."

Speaking to Falicor, Geijon says, "That is a deep question."

You say, "Well, without straying too far... any virtue can be taken too far."

Geijon says, "Temperance is probably my weakest virtue."

Speaking to Geijon, Kothos says, "Mine too."

You say, "An excess of Courage is foolhardiness. It is running into an impossible battle when wisdom says to wait for better terrain."

Akenna asks, "Wouldn't that merely mean abstinence?"

Tabubu quietly says, "Fine line between being courages and being stupid."

You say, "An excess of Temperance might be called asceticism. It means starving yourself near to death. Living on nothing but water and rice."

You say, "And for some people, this is their particular path. I will not say it is wrong, but it certainly isn't for all of us."

Kothos says, "There are some at the Temple who do this.  Fasting, for the sake of clarity."

You say, "If we all starved ourselves and lived in caves with only a simple cloth for warmth, our society wouldn't be much to speak of."

Kothos says, "Or focus, I suppose."

Speaking to Akenna, Aeith says, "I imagine abstinence is a complete avoidance, whereas temperance is a moderation."

You say, "So temperance, like all virtues, must be in the correct amount."

Speaking to Aeith, Akenna says, "Yes, that's what I mean."

Kothos says, "Perhaps that's the key to the virtue."

Sanfey says, "...balance, as has already been observed."

Phanna amusedly asks, "One must be temperant with their temperance?"

Kothos says, "It becomes eponymous."

Geijon says, "Th' Order generally doesn't invite th' foolhardy. It's not a quality we've had to address often, but it has manifested in smaller ways."

Speaking to you, Dirra asks, "A tool to maintain balance, then?"

Guarrin says, "Right. We had another question."

Speaking to you, Geijon says, "But I've long been considered a dangerous member."

Speaking to Geijon, Kothos says, "It's a hard trick to master."

You say, "Though, I should add that Wisdom is knowing how temperate to be."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Guarrin asks, "You wished to add something?"

Speaking quietly to you, Vaikhen says, "In the pursuit of temperance, how does one know where best to draw their own boundaries?  In pursuit of pleasures, and the like."

Speaking heartily to Geijon, Chamorr says, "Not me, im jus a teddy bear."

Speaking quietly to Vaikhen, Kothos says, "I've watched that question wander about in your head for a week now, I believe."

Vaikhen says, "I'll just ... sit back down."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Sanfey says, "No no... it's a good question..."

You say, "Well, as Temperance deals with people, there will never be a perfect answer. But if you notice yourself falling behind your fellows in your studies, or your skills, or growing weak when they remain strong... you may lack Temperance."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Kothos says, "An excellent question.  Judgment is hard."

Speaking to you, Vaikhen says, "So, some comparison to those you respect is ... wise."

Sanfey says, "I submit that, if we are honest with ourselves... we -know- when we are off the Path."

You say, "And, as with all values, you don't need to determine it yourself. You can ask others for their opinions."

You say, "Ideally someone you respect."

Speaking to you, Akenna inquires, "I have asked before, but it was awhile ago... so I'll ask you again, do you feel as though you yourself have done well with Temperance?  Do you feel it is a virtue you've learned well and applied?"

Speaking to Vaikhen, Kothos says, "You will find no lack of people ready to share their opinions."

Guarrin says, "Ah, I suppose it is Akenna's turn."

Speaking to Akenna, Teaberry says, "He's very good at patience, I know that."

Speaking quietly to you, Falicor says, "I don't think I have the temperance to ask Guarrin if I'm doin' it right though....."

Speaking to Akenna, you say, "Ah... well. I think we all need to improve in some way, don't we? And Temperance means, in part, mastering one's emotions."

You say, "And it has been... observed... that sometimes I have difficulty with that."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Geijon says, "Those in your sphere of influence, are important."

Speaking to Akenna, you exclaim, "So, clearly, I have more to learn!"

You exclaim, "But that's what being a squire is about!"

Geijon says, "Sir Brinn often said, bad lords will knight bad men."

Speaking to you, Sanfey says, "Of course you do- you're still alive."

You say, "Otherwise they would just make me a knight on day one, I imagine."

Speaking to Geijon, Kothos says, "That would explain the Blameless and their poor choice in names, both."

Geijon says, "So spurs are not a norm of goodness. It's recognition you are good at something, and if a lord knights bad men, maybe they are good at killing."

Falicor says, "Think big."

Speaking to Guarrin, you ask, "I lost track of who was next?"

Guarrin says, "A fair question from Lady Akenna."

Guarrin says, "Darcena is next."

Mauss quietly says, "Bein' a Knight of anythin' 'd be kinda pointless if it was that easy."

Darcena asks, "How have you witnessed temperance in action both within our Order and outside of it in your time as a squire?"

Speaking to Mauss, Geijon says, "I've heard people call it a microscope and it's often not one you want."

Sanfey asks, "...micro...scope...?"

Speaking to Guarrin, Geijon asks, "Did Alosaka answer Akenna fully?"

Darcena says, "This is not meant to point a particular person forward, but rather, the situation."

Speaking to you, Darcena says, "If that makes sense."

Speaking to Sanfey, Kothos says, "Like the lenses jewelers use to magnify flaws and clusters."

Speaking to Geijon, Guarrin says, "We can circle back around after Darcena's question."

Akenna says, "Oh, he did."

Geijon says, "Good good."

Speaking to Kothos, Sanfey says, "Oh. I see. I think. Pun not intended."

You say, "Temperance, among other things, includes mastering one's passions. I have, in my time as a squire, witnessed many people who, when confronted with extreme circumstances, managed to master their passions... or sometimes not."

You say, "Oddly, and I only observe this... often our enemies seem to be rather more disciplined than some of... than some people are."

Sanfey asks, "Even failure has value, though- is it not the best way to learn?"

Phanna remarks, "What a curious observation."

You say, "Consider the Blood Sons, or the Rooks, or Vlashandra's forces..."

Speaking to Sanfey, Kothos says, "Indeed.  Only if you possess the skill to know when you're wrong, too."

Speaking quietly to Sanfey, Aeith says, "I have learned more from my failures than any of my successes thus far."

Speaking to Kothos, Sanfey says, "Or to accept having it pointed out."

You say, "Some evil, some vile, some just deluded... but all rather dedicated."

You say, "I'm not sure I have a good answer for you. But I will think about it."

Sanfey says, "Pardon my rambling."

Speaking to Sanfey, Kothos says, "We would often rather have our limbs hewn and our throats flayed before admit such."

Guarrin asks, "Did anyone else have questions or something they wished to discuss on the topic?"

Roelaren says, "A failure tells ye one more way that  what ye are attempting is not the right way."

Speaking to you, Dirra asks, "When I was a Squire not so long ago with the Azure Sun I found relating a personal story helped bring  the lesson to life.  Could you share a moment when being tempered aided you or perhaps resulted in a failure?"

Dirra says, "I share a failure often if that aids."

Speaking quietly to Guarrin, you whisper aloud, "Planted question?"

Aeith chuckles.

Speaking to you, Guarrin says, "I assure you it was not."

Speaking to you, Geijon asks, "For those of us who know, perhaps th' less obvious one?"

Speaking to you, Dirra says, "Know but been a squire.  Forgive the question if uncomfortable."

Phanna amusedly murmurs, "Surely you don't believe that your neighbors to the south conspire against you."

Speaking to Dirra, you say, "Well, I just gave a whole speech about how enduring discomfort in training helps endure pain in the world, so I can hardly shrink from answering you now..."

Geijon says, "Anyone should be able to answer that."

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "Avoiding pain and humility are often not the same thing."

Speaking to Dirra, you say, "There are some people, including people here with us right now, that I have been wrathful toward, because I disagreed with their choices. I lacked the discipline necessary to control my emotions toward them."

You say, "And while I did then disagree with them, and I still do, allowing my anger to control me accomplished nothing."

You say, "And that is all I will say about that."

Speaking to you, Geijon asks, "Include me in that?"

Roelaren says, "Anger accomplishes nothing indeed."

You say, "I think those people know who they are."

Akenna takes a drink from her fresh apple cider.

Geijon says, "Well, anyone can point out a problem and a complaint."

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "It also takes a certain courage to stand up against those you disagree with, and yet still respect and count as friends."

Speaking offhandedly to Geijon, Falicor says, "And we would never disagree with you..."

Guarrin asks, "Right. Any other questions or concerns?"

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "Hopefully they can extend the same temperance to you."

Speaking to Kothos, Faerinn whispers aloud, "I don't think he meant that second part."

Guarrin corrects, "Comments. Comments."

Speaking sternly to Falicor, Darcena says, "You should not lie."

Geijon says, "As mentioned earlier th' Order doesn't often take a chance on recklessness. We approach you because you are stable. Those qualities and even leniency in manner we do tolerate."

Speaking to Faerinn, Kothos says, "It is, thankfully, not in me to judge."

Dirra says, "Many here would know of mine, where I let the hubris of an ability I hold not be tempered with the wisdom of a greater enemy resulting in cataclysmic catastrophe.  Trust me once neglect temperance once you never forget."

Geijon says, "None of us get it right, all th' time."

Speaking to Roelaren, Aeith says, "Anger can sometimes be like the heat that forges the blade, but when controlled, funneled, directed. Otherwise if left unchecked it would burn the whole forge down, which would accomplish nothing."

Geijon says, "I am wrong plenty."

Geijon says, "Cryheart too probably, maybe less so than me."

Dirra says, "Thank you for an honest answer speaks well to your heart."

Geijon says, "Remember, I am th' dangerous one."

Kothos says, "I have said before that while it may seem that me and mine wholly incorporate a lack of temperance, I do not know if I disagree with what's been presented here.  I am a little...perhaps leery of the method used to judge what is and what isn't excess."

Speaking to your rich dark cognac, you say, "Just one."

Speaking to Kothos, Darcena says, "I had another question in mind along those lines."

Darcena says, "But I decided it was not worth asking."

Speaking to herself, Dirra says, "Of course the incident of a snowball, temperance would have been better there too."

Speaking to Darcena, Kothos says, "Are you sure?  I like your questions."

Speaking to Kothos, Guarrin asks, "Do you have another suggestion as to evaluation?"

Speaking to Guarrin, Kothos says, "I can only state what I have found to be true, that the way lies through Service."

Darcena says, "I believe Alosaka is tired of my questions."

Speaking to Kothos, Falicor says, "I think if even I can be in their company, perhaps the method for evaluation is more fair than you realize."

Speaking to Kothos, you ask, "There probably is no perfect way, but if you want an easy one... ask yourself what the world would be like, if everyone upheld the virtue in the way that you do?"

Geijon says, "Tough. Ask away."

Speaking to Darcena, Guarrin says, "But the rest of us are not."

You say, "A thief may reason that stealing is fine, because only he does it. But if everyone were a thief, his world would be much, much worse off."

Speaking wryly to you, Vaikhen says, "Hmm, now that might be a tad dangerous, depending on what that person WANTS the world to be like."

Speaking to Darcena, Geijon says, "If someone cannot invest time in an answer, surely they have no temperanc."

Speaking to Vaikhen, you say, "As I said, it's not perfect."

Speaking to you, Kothos asks, "If everyone withheld judgment, and left my Temple and Her Effigy unburnt?"

Darcena says, "I have not figured out how to phrase it completely. But so many of these values, as we discuss nearly every night when we gather, are not some binary element. Is not part of discovering..."

Speaking to Ithilwyn, Kothos says, "There would certainly be fewer children, yes."

Speaking to Geijon, Dirra says, "Well said Sir Khyree."

Kothos says, "Though I should state we brew a tea for that, should that not be the lesson of temperance you want."

Darcena continues, "... how best to hold these values to our heart and display them, also a matter of being able to evaluate that even if someone else..."

Darcena continues, "...is displaying them in a different way, or perhaps to a different level, that they may also yet be, according to their own culture and their own values, displaying it just as well as you are?"

Speaking to Darcena, Kothos says, "With us, at the Temple, part of our particular Service relies upon consent.  I have mentioned here, to a few who were curious."

Darcena asks, "Do we judge them missing something based upon our own belief?"

Darcena asks, "Or do we accord them respect and consider their position?"

Dirra says, "Hard question that."

Speaking to Darcena, Kothos says, "Sometimes that is very hard."

Geijon says, "I'll let th' squire answer."

Kothos asks, "Alosaka and I are both from Brisker's Cove.  Can we extend tolerance to Krolvin slavers when we saw our friends taken?"

You thoughtfully say, "That is one of the greatest and most difficult questions that has ever been asked. If there were a satisfactory answer, we would solve most of the world's problems, have perfect laws, and always know what is right.... but obviously we cannot always agree on values."

Speaking to Darcena, Guarrin says, "Yes, comparing the Code to the songs of Kiremgrea, for example."

Speaking to Kothos, Sanfey says, "Tolerance of intolerance... is a slippery slope."

Falicor leans over and whispers, "You know you got them thinkin' about it when they start to argue about it."

Speaking to you, Darcena says, "Follow up question, then, Alosaka."

Darcena says, "If you will."

Speaking to Sanfey, Kothos says, "I suppose there is a line between personal interaction and those specified conflicts, but..."

Speaking to Darcena, you say, "Most people tend to think that their own values and virtues are, of course, the correct ones."

Darcena says, "When you are done with this one."

You say, "Well, we'd be here all night for that... but I think in the end some civilizations manage to demonstrate through their success that their virtues are, in fact, serviceable."

Aeith says, "Values themselves are tempered with perspective. Perspectives of others beliefs, cultures, and their own perspectives. All of these can help gain a greater understanding of the strengths and holes of one's value system."

Speaking to you, Sanfey says, "I think... justice is the moderator for such a question..."

You say, "The Order of the Silver Gryphons, for instance, demonstrates the values of Courage, Justice, Temperance and Wisdom. And I think the Order has been somewhat successful with that."

Falicor says, "It is enough, to begin with, that the idea can be recognized as something you can refine..."

You say, "So you could say that by their success, the Gryphons demonstrate the worth of their virtues."

Geijon says, "Somewhat, yes."

Speaking to you, Sanfey asks, "Because truly just behavior and decisions... transcend culture and belief, don't you think?"

Faerinn asks, "Only somewhat?"

Geijon says, "We often fail, as I said earlier. It's that we strive for that ideal."

Speaking to Sanfey, you say, "We would, all of us, like to think that. If only we could agree on what justice was."

Mauss quietly mutters, "And yet justice is in the eye of the beholder, offen enough."

Geijon says, "Temperance is a measurement of intent."

Speaking to Darcena, you say, "Okay, now I'm done with that question."

Guarrin says, "Darcena had a follow up. Then Lady Dirra."

Kothos says, "Temperance is also at least in part humility and wisdom."

Kothos says, "Or the source and final nature, of such."

Geijon says, "Fair."

Speaking to you, Darcena asks, "You indicate that the question is not possible to solve. Is our job, as individuals seeking to better ourselves,  to answer all the questions and solve all the problems? Or is it to constantly grapple with and wrestle with the question as we move closer and closer to an understanding of how to truly embody the Code and our oath? Do we expect others to have the answers? Or do we expect them to examine the situation continuously?"

Geijon says, "Mmm."

You say, "Let me consider that a moment."

Kothos says, "Perhaps the questions are what matters more than the resolution.  If one stops to think of them, or consider them when they make mistakes."

Speaking quietly to himself, Vaikhen says, "A thousand blights, but that's a rough series of questions ..."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Kothos says, "You are not wrong."

Mauss says, "Or askin' the correct question."

Geijon says, "Lot to impact there. I'd lead towards th' grapple."

Darcena sheepishly says, "I think I'm done after this one."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Kothos says, "I was just thinking I'm an Ivasian cultist and with little exception I've never gotten a bunch of sass that bad."

Falicor says, "Seek perfection. Accept progress."

Evia says, "Kothos got it right."

Speaking to Darcena, you say, "So, there's a lot to answer there. I'll start by saying that I think it is the duty of all people, no matter what their virtues or values are, to stand up for those virtues and values. Not with violence, perhaps -- though sometimes with violence. But always with passion."

Speaking to Darcena, Phanna says, "But they're such good questions."

Sanfey asks, "Do you stay awake nights, thinking up these questions?"

Speaking to Sanfey, Kothos says, "You know, I think she does."

Speaking to Darcena, Kothos says, "You always have that wild look of curiosity upon you."

Speaking to you, Geijon says, "Interesting take. I think often we answer with violence, naturally."

Speaking to Sanfey, Darcena says, "They just come to me... because I am always curious."

Sanfey says, "I thought *I* had some deep thoughts on the subject. Talk about a lesson in humility..."

Aeith says, "These are good questions. Questions that push on their answerers with difficulty."

Speaking to Darcena, you say, "At the same time, I think there is Wisdom in being open to the knowledge and experience of others, even those you disagree with. A wise Tehiri shaman once said, "All that is good is mine." By this he didn't mean that everything of his was good or belong to him, but that wisdom anywhere was wisdom he could accept."

Speaking quietly to Geijon, Tabubu says, "Sometimes that is the only way they will listen to the answer."

Speaking to Evia, Kothos says, "You could say that more often, you know.  If need be."

Speaking to Tabubu, Geijon says, "It is also, often, easy."

Speaking to Evia, Kothos says, "I'll try to be very humble."

Speaking to Darcena, you ask, "So, perhaps that is another aspect of Temperance? Knowing when to stand up for your own virtues, and knowing when to listen and accept those of others?"

Evia says, "Another wise Tahiri once said, make yourself welcome to my delicious coffee."

Speaking to Tabubu, Kothos says, "Oh, I'm totally lying."

Speaking to you, Darcena says, "That is where I was heading."

Guarrin says, "Interesting. We do only have a few more minutes, although we can go over. Let's move onto Lady Dirra's question."

Speaking to you, Sanfey says, "That's profound indeed. I rather like it."

Roelaren says, "Being open to other ideas allows us to examine our own and come to terms with ourself and maybe change or not change dependnig on what we have glenned."

Guarrin says, "Then Falicor."

Speaking to you, Dirra says, "Curious back to the last question."

Speaking to Darcena, Kothos says, "Your words live on to fight another question.  Poor Alosaka."

Speaking to Kothos, Darcena whispers aloud, "I think they dread when I arrive at meetings."

(Alosaka takes a drink of his cognac to wet his lips.)

Speaking to Darcena, Evia says, "Or...your pregnant question has given birth to multiples."

Speaking flatly to Kothos, Vaikhen says, "My primary takeaway - thus far - is that temperance is extremely complicated."

Geijon says, "We've got Dirra and Falicor questions as Guarrin noted."

Speaking to you, Dirra asks, "I know Wehneimer's is not an Imperial settlement clearly, but does the Rysus Codex which is well accepted as Imperial law ever aid you consider such a question of judging or not juudging?"

You say, "So, starting with the fact that I'm not a lawyer."

Speaking to Vaikhen, Kothos says, "I honestly expected to disagree with him more.  But it rather does make sense, the temperance of thought, and of expression."

Faerinn says, "The Rysus Codex is best used as rolling papers for cigars."

Goldstr says, "Intrestin."

Speaking sadly to Vaikhen, Falicor says, "Everything simple is."

Roelaren says, "I dont know what that is."

Roelaren says, "That codex."

Speaking to Dirra, you say, "Judgement is a primary virtue. But because people and societies are so complex, it is reasonable and necessary that certain matters of judgement -- which we call the law or justice -- be left to the purview of experts."

Speaking to Roelaren, Dendum informs, ""The Codex lays out the greatness of the humans."

Speaking to Dirra, you say, "So, while everyone should have proper Judgement, the act of judgement as pertains to criminals is the proper domain of those who train in the law and are acknowledged experts in it."

Speaking to Roelaren, Dendum muses, ""Or perhaps best shows their foolishness?"

Aeith softly says, "Laws should be made to be just. In ideal situations they are. But in reality they are not always. Just because a law is a law does not mean it is always just. It has to be examined and evaluated."

Speaking to Alvyara, Kothos says, "My special powers, the dark corners of your mind.  Or not so dark."

Speaking to you, Dirra says, "And so sorry if I am putting you on the spot just I have a deep curiousity and could not help but ask."

You say, "To say simply, I may judge whether someone's actions are right or wrong, but I will leave to the courts to decide if they are legal or illegal."

Speaking to Aeith, Sanfey asks, "The spirit versus the letter, no?"

Speaking to you, Dirra says, "Well answered.  Thank you."

Guarrin says, "Right. Onto Falicor."

Falicor says, "No question, he said comments too..."

You say, "And there have been times when I vehemently disagreed with a legal judgement. But I accepted it."

Speaking merrily to you, Falicor exclaims, "Great job on the talk, lad.  Well done!"

Speaking to Falicor, Darcena complains, "You're trying to make me out to be the bad Gryphon while you get to be the good Gryphon!"

Speaking to you, Kothos asks, "Was it even worse than you were dreading?"

Roelaren says, "All laws should stand examination by the people  not just be taken as right  just because some  one says they are right."

Speaking to Darcena, Sanfey asks, "...aren't you?"

Falicor seriously exclaims, "Finally!"

Speaking to Dirra, Goldstr says, "Well Lady Crawfinn   We HAVE had an Orc as our Town Mardhall."

Speaking to you, Kothos says, "Take a big drink before you answer, it's me you're talking to now."

Regwen says, "Thank ye all, very interesting discussion.  I must excuse myself for aother meeting."

Guarrin says, "With that, I believe we will conclude the discussion, although you are most welcome to remain and continue the discussion."

Speaking evenly to Sanfey, Darcena says, "I will let my fellow Gryphons decide that."

Speaking to you, Akenna agrees, "You've done very well."

Speaking to you, Dirra says, "Thank you for the discussion, it was wonderful."

Aeith quietly says, "An evil ruler can create an evil law. It may still be a law, but it doesn't mean it is right, nor right to follow it."

Guarrin says, "I would like to thank Alosaka for fielding the discussions well."

Fixing your eyes firmly on the ground, you bow respectfully.