(urth) mystery of the guild

Roy C. Lackey rclackey at stic.net
Wed Feb 11 12:50:45 PST 2009

I don't see what is so mysterious about this. If you look at the last two
sentences of the chapter I cited when I answered the original question, it
seems obvious enough:

"No one truly obeys unless he will do the unthinkable in obedience; no one
will do the unthinkable save we.
    "How could I refuse to the Increate what I had willingly given to the
Autarch when I struck off Katharine's head?" (SWORD, chap. XXXI)

Think back to the lecture/lesson Severian had with Aquastor Malrubius the
night before he left Nessus, about the "seven principles of governance" with
the "Divine Entity" as the highest rank. The torturers were raised from
early childhood to respond with blind, unreasoned obedience to authority.

Most people would balk at causing the death of a planet's population, even
if they had assurances that a greater good would come of it, by and by.
Severian had no such scruples.


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