by Kyle Pearson
|Status||Alive and whole|
|Magics||Surgebinding, Old Magic|
|Featured In||The Stormlight Archive|
I control all things that can be grown, nurtured.
That includes the thorns. ”
Cultivation is one of the sixteen Shards of Adonalsium. She resides on Roshar, having originally come there with Honor before Odium's arrival. Its Vessel's name is unknown, although Hoid calls her Slammer.
Appearance and Personality
”This woman extended into eternity.
Cultivation's Vessel's true appearance is unknown. When speaking with Dalinar, she creates a "puppet" shaped like a dark-skinned woman with a matronly build. She wears a sweeping brown dress that seems to meld into the undergrowth, and has a voice described as sounding like tumbling stones.
She appears to be rather calculating and cautious, preferring to set things up from the background than taking action directly, likely thanks to having front-row view of what happens to Shards that do fight Odium head-on. She is deeply private and secretive, retreating from people and hiding her plans and thoughts from them. This leads to many thinking that she has given up on humanity at large, while in reality she is hiding and planning. When she does interact with people, she is rather curt and self-assured, leaving no room for discussion or doubts, though she can be considerate when need be.
She and Tanavast were once romantically involved, and she seems to feel similarly about Stormfather, likely due to his nature as Honor's Cognitive Shadow. Whether what she feels is still love is unknown.
Her intent as a Shard appears to be related to transformation. According to Odium, all she wishes to see is change, regardless of where it leads. In her own view, on the other hand, she wishes to grow things and people, and prune them if need be, to shape them in a desired form, even if she accepts that there will always be a degree of uncertainty.
Surgebinding is a magic system derived from both Cultivation and Honor. To Surgebind, a person must bond a spren, which grants them the ability to inhale Stormlight and use it for various purposes, chief among them self-healing and manipulating Surges, the fundamental forces of Roshar. Some Surges are more inclined towards Cultivation, while others are closer to Honor. Additionally, some of the Radiant spren appear to be closer to Cultivation than others.
Old Magic is a magic "system" that appears to be usable only by Cultivation and Nightwatcher. It allows for granting another person a boon and a bane based on their request. The boons and banes can range from physical objects, such as money or swords, to mental alterations, such as making a person see upside-down for the rest of their life, or erasing memories. It even permits Realmatic changes, such as granting a new and unique way of acquiring Investiture.
There is more to Old Magic than just boons and banes; however, there is no person currently known to make use of that.
It has been speculated that Cultivation has her own form of gaseous Investiture, equivalent to Stormlight and Voidlight. When visiting the Nightwatcher, Dalinar sees Cultivation surrounded by green mist, which is likely that. Whether this "Cultivationlight" can fuel any magic system or power is uknown.
Cultivation is capable of seeing the future, with Honor mentioning that she is much better at it than he ever was. While certainly one of the better users of futuresight in cosmere, she herself admits that she cannot truly predict everything.
She is capable of creating spren of herself, the chief example of this being the Nightwatcher. This being said, Nightwatcher is not very humanlike, and so Cultivation keeps her in the Valley to hold court, and grants her the use of Old Magic. Cultivationspren are also likely tied to Cultivation herself, as they refer to her as "Mother".
Something about her presence on Roshar, whether intentional or otherwise, makes it easier for animal life there to attain a degree of sentience, with both Ryshadium and santhids being far more intelligent than their peers for this reason.
Cultivation's Perpendicularity is located in the Horneater Peaks, and forms either one or all of the Horneater Oceans, the giant lakes at the top of the mountains. Until the True Desolation, where it was overtaken by the Fused, it was the main way for worldhoppers to travel to and from Roshar.
Shattering and ancient Roshar
It's unknown who Cultivation's Vessel is, only that she dates back to the Shattering of Adonalsium and that she greatly dislikes Hoid. The Shard itself was creating during the Shattering, and was subsequently taken up by the Vessel. She and Honor, with whom she was romantically involved, departed the site of the Shattering, Yolen, and ended up on Roshar. There, they became the gods of a local sentient species known as the singers. However, following Odium's arrival in the Rosharan system, the two Shards ended up siding with human newcomers instead.
Although Cultivation assisted Honor in fighting Odium, Honor still perished. Following his death, Cultivation withdrew in grief, and appeared to have lost all interest in aiding mankind any longer. This was not entirely correct, however -- rather than hiding, she was planning.
Era of Solitude
In the late Era of Solitude, Cultivation used the Old Magic at least twice. She granted Taravangian the compassion and the capacity to save the world, while also making it so that the proportion of one to the other changes daily, though the exact reason why is uncertain. She also intervened when Dalinar Kholin came to see the Nightwatcher and beg for forgiveness. Instead of this, she made him forget his wife, which served as both a boon and a bane.
Unlike with all other boons and banes, Dalinar's memories gradually returned after the arrival of the Everstorm. This was deliberately engineered by Cultivation to give him time to come to terms with his past before Odium would try to use it to turn Dalinar into his champion.
”Storming Mother of the World and Father of Storms above!
Cultivation has been honored on Roshar for a long time, at least since the era of the Knights Radiant. In the present day, however, her worship is limited to the western part of the continent, where she is considered an embodiment of nature and nature spren. There, she is sometimes referred to as Mother of the World. Even in the east, people sometimes make references to Mother Cultivation, though typically as a joke. In Vorinism, belief in her and her cohorts, such as the Nightwatcher, is considered pagan superstition and usually dismissed.
Cultivation is also highly revered by cultivationspren. Though the precise relation between them and her is unclear, they often call her Mother or Blessed Mother, and only sometimes by her proper name. "Mother's vines" appears to be a particular curse related to Cultivation.
- Reya, a mythological figure on Roshar after whom the star Tear is named, is not the name of Cultivation's Vessel.
- Cultivation always speaks in all-caps, similarly to Stormfather, but unlike Honor.
- Rithmatist Albuquerque signing
— Arcanum - 2013-05-22#
- Arcanum Unbounded Chicago signing
— Arcanum - 2016-12-06#
- Boskone 54
— Arcanum - 2017-02-18#
- Oathbringer chapter 114 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_114#
- The Way of Kings chapter 75 Summary: The Way of Kings/Chapter_75#
- 17th Shard Forum Q&A
— Arcanum - 2012-09-26#
- General Signed Books 2016
— Arcanum - 2016-01-01#
- Words of Radiance interlude I-9 Summary: Words of Radiance/Interlude_I-9#
- Oathbringer London signing
— Arcanum - 2017-11-28#
- Rithmatist Albuquerque signing
— Arcanum - 2013-05-22#
- JordanCon 2014
— Arcanum - 2014-04-11#
- Oathbringer chapter 57 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_57#
- Stormblessed.com interview with Brandon Sanderson
— Arcanum - 2010-12-25#
- FanX 2018
— Arcanum - 2018-09-06#
- Skyward Denver signing
— Arcanum - 2018-11-15#
- The Way of Kings interlude I-7 Summary: The Way of Kings/Interlude_I-7#
- Legion Release Party
— Arcanum - 2018-09-19#
- Read For Pixels 2018
— Arcanum - 2018-09-01#
- Idaho Falls signing
— Arcanum - 2018-12-29#
- JordanCon 2016
— Arcanum - 2016-04-23#
- Oathbringer chapter 118 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_118#
- Shadows of Self Denver signing
— Arcanum - 2015-10-06#
- Oathbringer chapter 93 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_93#
- Oathbringer chapter 102 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_102#
- Oathbringer chapter 111 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_111#
- Words of Radiance chapter 55 Summary: Words of Radiance/Chapter_55#
- Idaho Falls Signing
— Arcanum - 2015-11-28#
- Tel Aviv Signing
— Arcanum - 2019-10-18#
- Oathbringer chapter 24 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_24#
- Oathbringer chapter 121 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_121#
- Edgedancer chapter 15 Summary: Edgedancer/Chapter_15#
- Oathbringer chapter 29 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_29#
- Words of Radiance chapter 3 Summary: Words of Radiance/Chapter_3#
- Oathbringer chapter 21 Summary: Oathbringer/Chapter_21#
- Edgedancer chapter 4 Summary: Edgedancer/Chapter_4#
- Edgedancer chapter 13 Summary: Edgedancer/Chapter_13#
- Edgedancer chapter 11 Summary: Edgedancer/Chapter_11#
- General Signed Books 2014
— Arcanum - 2014-01-01#
|Shards||Ambition · Autonomy · Cultivation · Devotion · Dominion · Endowment · Honor · Odium · Preservation · Ruin · Survival Shard|
|Planets||Ashyn · Braize · First of the Sun · Nalthis · Obrodai · Roshar · Scadrial · Sel · Taldain · Threnody · Vax · Yolen|
|Terms||Adonalsium · Sliver · Splinter · Realmatic Theory · Investiture · Connection · Identity · Fortune · Intention · Perpendicularity · Spiritweb · Resonance|
|Worldhoppers||Hoid · Khriss · Nazh · Iyatil · Mraize · Vasher · Vivenna · Galladon · Demoux · Baon · Felt · Nightblood|
|Other||Seventeenth Shard · Ire · Shattering · Letters · Silverlight|