The Circle of The Way (log)

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This is a creative work set in the world of Elanthia, attributed to its original author(s). It does not necessarily represent the official lore of GemStone IV.

Title: The Circle of The Way: A Visual Lesson

Author: Talinvor (prime)

The Circle of The Way

Talinvor says, “This piece was inspired by the work of Mnar, who’s Treatise on The Way (see: Regarding the Way (essay) ) inspired me to expand upon it, and offer illumination on this back of ascension.”

Talinvor says, “I’ve always been more of a… visual person. While I did use Mnar’s work as an outline, I thought a new presentation style might both educate and refresh our minds.”

Talinvor says, “Imagine, if you will – a circle. In that circle stands a Dhe’nar. There are six marks placed equally on that circle around him.”

(Talinvor drags a stick that has been tipped with a piece of chalk and begins to draw a wide circle around himself.)

(Talinvor glances up mid-stroke, and in a whispered voice says, “I suggest some of you take notes.”)

(Talinvor marks six points and numbers them: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.)

(Talinvor taps each numbered point and names them off: “Dyr, fwe, qos, vua, qoi, tyo.”)

Talinvor says, “Let me start with the first.”

(Talinvor taps the first point on the circle and writes with the chalk, “Sho’nae”.)

Talinvor says, “The first position is that of Family. It is the point of beginning, where we all begin the path of The Way.”

Talinvor says, “The Family provides us with the tools to begin our journey, offers protection, guidance and purpose. This knowledge from past generations ensures that we continue to evolve as a people.”

Talinvor says, “From here, we are tested along the next part of the path.”

(Talinvor trails his stick in a graceful arc, drawing an arrow along the circle’s path and pausing prior to his second mark.)

Talinvor says, “Here we are tested and taught “Ko’ar’lai’sha”, the Art of Survival. Because it is during our childhood, we ensure that only the strong survive, and we do not waste the Family’s resources on those that would be a liability.”

Talinvor says, “Once we are deemed ready, we begin to comprehend the tenants of perfection that we all strive to achieve.”

(Talinvor reaches the second point with his chalk-tipped stick and writes another rune on the circle, “Shi’ri’nai de dyr”.)

Talinvor says, “This second rune is Self-Perfection, or in literal translation – Our Perfection of One. This means that in order to perfect our people, we must first learn how to perfect ourselves. The family gives us the tools necessary in order to learn how to be the best we can possibly be.”

Talinvor says, “For ourselves, we learn reliance, respect, determination, responsibility and a sense of self-worth. It is here that we must be careful that this goal of self-perfection does not lead to vanity… though the young…

Talinvor glances around the room.

Talinvor says, “…may find that very difficult to deny. Eventually, that sense of pride will expand to the Family as we progress.”

(Talinvor quickly spins his stick around the circumference of the circle ending again at the first rune for Family, and taps it for emphasis.)

Talinvor nods.

Talinvor says, “Moving on.”

Talinvor clears his throat.

(Talinvor marks a third rune on the circle.)

Talinvor says, “This rune is for Opinion. This is what makes us leaders. We are encouraged to think rationally, objectively and individually. It is here too, that we learn to deal with the consequences of our decisions and learn to overcome mistakes…if they aren’t lethal, of course.”

Talinvor chuckles to himself.

Talinvor says, “This too, encourages us to only get better.

(Talinvor backtracks the circle’s arc to the second rune, Self-Perfection and taps it for emphasis.)

Talinvor nods.

Talinvor says, “From Opinion we learn Power.”

(Talinvor marks the fourth rune on the circle, “Kris”.)

Talinvor says, “It has been said that “those who think will rise to power.”

Talinvor says, “Here we learn and practice our ability to utilize various forms of power.

Talinvor cracks his knuckles.

Talinvor says, “Knowledge is simply learning and studying information that will gain us power – be it a new spell, discovering a secret, or learning a new strategy. This is the strongest point of the Priesthood.”

Talinvor says, “Manipulation, another form of power is the ability to convince or redirect others to accomplish a goal. Amongst the Warlock Caste, this is an art form.”

Talinvor says, “Force of Will is the ability to lead, inspire or even intimidate others. This is a requirement amongst the Warrior Caste.”

Talinvor says, “This is of course not to say that a Warrior need not learn manipulation, or a priest learn force of will – but more a demonstration of the priority of power the Castes directly embrace.”


Talinvor says, “Back to Power then.”

(Talinvor taps the fourth rune.)

Talinvor says, “Here is what truely defines The Way. There are two paths from Power.”

(Talinvor draws a straight line away from the fourth rune, outside of the circle.)

Talinvor says, “This is the path to “Self Gratification.” It is the path Forthyr took, and many have taken since.”

Talinvor says, “While it can lead to greater power, and even ascension – it is limiting. Most of you are familiar with the Star Eater, or even the Faendryl lore of Amasalen’s ascension.”

Talinvor says, “Shtaq was minion to the demon he summoned, and even in godhood may be so still.

Talinvor says, “Amasalen serves Luukos, and gains power at the behest of the snake lord. Considering elves do not even see the Arkati as anything more than patrons… well you can see that he, ‘cut his own throat’, so to speak.”

Talinvor laughs softly.

Talinvor says, “Well some of you may have gotten the pun…”

Talinvor clears his throat.

Talinvor says, “In any case, even the humans in their mage towers led themselves to limited ability, and ultimately self-destruction with their aims of power.”

Talinvor says, “The point is, this path of Self-Gratification is *not* The Way.”

Talinvor says, “If you’ll look here…”

(Talinvor sweeps the stick back from the Power rune, and around the circle’s curve to the fifth mark.)

Talinvor says, “This is, “Honor.”

(Talinvor taps the arc between the fourth rune, Power and the fifth rune, Honor. He looks up from the circle to give a calculating glance, evaluating his audience.)

Talinvor says, “From Power, to Honor. This is the hardest step for many, but this is also the path we have been born to take. This path is what truely set us upon The Way.”

Talinvor says, “Now before we get all excited, let me explain.”

Talinvor says, “Honor integrates a sense of dignity, respect and adherence to our codes of conduct.”

Talinvor furrows his brow.

Talinvor says, “I’ll get into our codes of conduct another time. I just wanted to show you all the bigger picture here.”

Talinvor says, “As Dhe’nar, we hold higher expectations for our own.

(Talinvor follows the curve of the circle and makes the sixth and final rune.)

Talinvor says, “From Honor, we maintain Unity. Once we have proven our worth as Dhe’nar, we aim to put the needs of our people before ourselves as individuals. We combine our focus and our talents together to promote success.”

Talinvor says, “The world around us identifies not specifically as the individual, but identifies that we are in fact, Dhe’nar.”

(Talinvor traces the circle’s path from the sixth rune, Unity back to the first rune, Family.)

Talinvor says, “This sense of unity, of who we are – along with all the trials and tribulations that we have endured is shared amongst all of us.”

Talinvor says, “By this measure and by all that you do as Dhe’nar, is for the Family.”


Talinvor says, “There is yet more, you see.”

(Talinvor draws a line leading from the first rune, Family – away from the circle and writes, “Noi’Sho’Rah”.)

Talinvor says, “From the rune of Family, is the point of ascension. This is the ultimate goal, one that Noi’sho’rah obtained by following The Way and remaining faithful to these ideals.”

(Talinvor taps each rune as he repeats them in succession, “Family, Self-Perfection, Opinion, Power, Honor, Unity, Family…Ascension)

Talinvor says, “This is… The Way.