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Old 09-17-2010, 12:26 PM
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Default "you are mine now" - Ikran bonding

Hi.
I just wanted to ask you, if anyone else was uncomfortable with the Ikran bonding scene. Everytime I get to that scene, I think that it is a bit off. Ok, Jake is a human, so he may handle this differently, but I definitely was bothered by the idea of going to a place with wild animals, grab one of them (preferrably the one that tries to kill you and so it obviously does not really like what you are doing) and then bond with it/domesticate it to call it your own (unlike the Direhorses who seem to be more tame in the first place).
I may not get it fully, but this made me uneasy several times I saw the scene as it does not completely line up with what I saw in the NA'Vi and their idea of beeing in balance with the nature around them.
Of course, this is probably how natives always handled such things, native americans probably caught wild horses and domesticated them, other cultures also took wild animals to use for transport.
So I dont say it is a bad scene, I am however wondering how this goes along with the ideals behind NA'Vi culture - how can it be justified to take a wild animal into posession like that?

Greetings
Aurora
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Old 09-18-2010, 02:52 AM
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Uncomfortable only when Jake says: "You're mine.", but he's new to the whole life being equal thing .
Anyway! I'd say it is quite justified O=! I mean, there's the risk of death by falling or being thoroughly bitten. If the creature really does choose you, and really sees something in you, then it makes perfect sense to "posses"(I think of it more like accepting the challenge) it. I always viewed the relationship of ikran makto with their ikran to be a kind of a partnered thing, though, if you get me. However, if given these choices (See below) after being attacked by an ikran...I'd say the latter of all of them would align pretty well with the Na'vi beliefs. Instead of the balance we have here on Earth, where it's killed or be killed, the Na'vi can compromise by making tsahaylu (sometimes). It's a different balance with life, but it's still a balance. O_O...I'm not sure that this gave you any sort of answer, but it makes sense to me.

Choices: Letting the ikran kill you, you killing it, or you managing to acquire a mental bond with the ikran where you both live and are relatively happy henceforth. This option is much better than either party dying xD
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Old 09-18-2010, 09:47 AM
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The ikran did choose them... Any that would not feel right about it would not be bonded with.
It's their way of finding out if the person who they may bond with is worthy of it.
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Old 09-18-2010, 01:53 PM
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Ok, so you say that the Ikran actually do not try to kill the NA'Vi out of defense, but as a test. That is an interesting view. That would mean, that the Ikran who are unwilling simply fly away and only the ones who are willing to make that bond stay. Hmmm.

The choice either be killed or make tsaheylu, I do not really understand - I mean, the NA'Vi go up there all the way only to do this - it is not a random encounter that ends up in "you or me".
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"Humans are storytellers. These stories then can become our reality. Only when we loose ourselves in the stories they have the power to control us. Our culture got lost in the wrong story, a story of death and defeat, of opression and control, of separation and competition. We need a new story!"
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Old 09-19-2010, 03:55 PM
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It isn't just choosing the Ikran that is the test. This is a warrior rite of passage and part of that is the climb up there. The Native Americans treated their animals as 'brothers' in the web of life, the same goes with the Na'vi. You are right in saying that the Ikran challenges the warrior to see if he/she has the strength and courage to try and fight. IF they do, then they are paired.
Jake sees it as a 'conquest' not a pairing, but that changes later on as we saw. Once he got the hang of flying, he understood that it wasn't a 'capture' it was a meeting of minds.
That scene only bothered me with his one line, but it was a 'he doesn't understand yet' kind of bother, not the action itself.
Jake does have a different way of doing things, he still was thinking in the human 'take what I want' mode, which also changed when something of his was taken (Grace).
So once he truly bonded with his Ikran (want to know what he named it) and went on hunts and learned how to truly be 'one with his brother' then he likely dropped that attitude.
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Old 09-19-2010, 07:27 PM
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I want to bring Eywa in this discussion. She is the all mighty, benevolent moon-wide brain able to control all the animals and (not made clear in the movie) I think Na'vi too.

When Na'vi are choosing an Ikran, it might not be just that they domesticate a lesser creature. Eywa is most likely controlling the situation in some way.. and if someone tried to just tame an Ikran "for fun" without a reason or any training, Eywa would not allow it.

Just like Jake bonding with the Toruk, who thought it would be as easy as jumping on it's back? Not me. Eywa must be helping in those situations.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:40 PM
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Yeah, probably Eywa has a saying in it.

Oh, by the way, do you know Paul Stamets? He is a mushroom scientist, developing applications like water purification and oil spill cleanups. He also says that Earth is covered by mushroom mycelium and they make up huge parts of the biomass in living ecosystems. He theorized once, that this web may be intelligent. If that is really true, it would be a mazing to have "Eywa" here

But back OT - I think also, that Jakes statement bothered me most, but still the NA'Vi have to fight to get tsaheylu with an Ikran. That at least looks a bit like the ikran does not want to be bonded with and doing it anyways would not exactly be treating it like a "brother". But I guess it could just take off and leave instead of stay and attack - and the Eywa argument is not too bad.

Sadly some part of the story is missing. Jake is destined to do what he does of course. First that sign by Eywa with the woodsprites and later he gets that vision about Toruk. Especially the latter one implies to me that indeed the goddess intended him to become Toruk Makto. Either she simply showed him how to do that or she even prepared Toruk for that. Sadly that vision got cut out, it explains why he gets the idea in the first place.

And YES, I'd also like to know the name of that Ikran

How did the native
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Stop terraforming Earth (wordpress)

"Humans are storytellers. These stories then can become our reality. Only when we loose ourselves in the stories they have the power to control us. Our culture got lost in the wrong story, a story of death and defeat, of opression and control, of separation and competition. We need a new story!"
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:42 AM
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I still doubt there is direct control like that. The Na'vi's actions are still their own, same for the ikran.

You're right about them flying off and leaving - the part I find interesting is the one ikran that looks for a second or two like it might choose Jake, then thinks better of it and flies off.

Bonding with an ikran - an equal is probably a good way put put it - Jake is certainly still a skyperson at that point, he was thinking in human terms.
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by auroraglacialis View Post
He is a mushroom scientist, developing applications like water purification and oil spill cleanups. He also says that Earth is covered by mushroom mycelium and they make up huge parts of the biomass in living ecosystems. He theorized once, that this web may be intelligent. If that is really true, it would be a mazing to have "Eywa" here
I love his 'Mycelium Running' book!

You may enjoy my thread:

Is Eywa a fungal organism?
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Old 09-26-2010, 05:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by auroraglacialis View Post
Hi.
I just wanted to ask you, if anyone else was uncomfortable with the Ikran bonding scene. Everytime I get to that scene, I think that it is a bit off. Ok, Jake is a human, so he may handle this differently, but I definitely was bothered by the idea of going to a place with wild animals, grab one of them (preferrably the one that tries to kill you and so it obviously does not really like what you are doing) and then bond with it/domesticate it to call it your own (unlike the Direhorses who seem to be more tame in the first place).
I may not get it fully, but this made me uneasy several times I saw the scene as it does not completely line up with what I saw in the NA'Vi and their idea of beeing in balance with the nature around them.
Of course, this is probably how natives always handled such things, native americans probably caught wild horses and domesticated them, other cultures also took wild animals to use for transport.
So I dont say it is a bad scene, I am however wondering how this goes along with the ideals behind NA'Vi culture - how can it be justified to take a wild animal into posession like that?

Greetings
Aurora

You gotta remember they see it as the Ikran 'choosing' them. So thats all they really need for justification.
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Old 09-26-2010, 09:13 AM
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I don't feel uncomfortable during this scene. An Ikran trying to kill a Na'vi warrior is ultimately the choosing of it's rider. And the young warrior eventually being able to fly it is all part of the bond between the Ikran and it's rider. It's just the way it's supposed to happen. It's not like the young warriors go out and to find an Ikran to make their own, just for the sake domesticating wild animals.

Same goes for Native Americans, the majority of tribes a long time ago were not those kind of people.


I can see why you think this though, but I personally never got that impression while watching the movie.
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Old 09-26-2010, 09:25 AM
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By the way, in the original scriptment the Na'vi just jumped on their backs and made the bond quickly. No choosing or training. In the movie it was definitely more interesting
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Old 09-26-2010, 11:33 AM
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Yeah, I think so... the game follows the script more in that part and I didn't like that.
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Old 09-27-2010, 01:25 AM
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I must admit that I've had a "problem" with the rough way that it was handled--It "looks" to me like there was a bit too much aggression in the "you are mine" part--a bit like "I own you"---but, as was said--that could be traces of Skypeople still in Jake---I would have thought that there would be more harmony in a life-bond like that....I felt better in the scene after Hometree when Jake was "consoling" him with "you're not gonna like this"--that part brought a smile to me--it looked like he had really bonded at that time......
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Old 09-27-2010, 06:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drewan View Post
...I felt better in the scene after Hometree when Jake was "consoling" him with "you're not gonna like this"--that part brought a smile to me--it looked like he had really bonded at that time......
Of course he had... they had gone on a hunt together, at least once, and run for their lives from Toruk. I think by the time we see them flying in formation (likely on the way to the sturmbeast hunt) he is fully comfortable with sharing his mind with his Ikran..they are a pair by then and he understands how his Ikran thinks. Gotta find out the name he chose! If he did. I don't think he ever had a pet so naming an animal may not be something he's familiar doing.
Ah well.
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