General Discussion

Light triumphant over dark... why?
Cthonic Cultist at 9:43PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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Who says that the light is inherently better than the dark? Darkness is merely the absence of light. Why is that bad? You rarely hear of ‘Warriors of Darkness’ saving the world from an evil, searing light god-king or whatever, (though they do exist). Why is that? Do people associate goodness with light more readily, or is it just that so many games and stories already say ‘light is good, dark is bad’ so they just assume that must always be the case?

Just putting my thoughts out there.
Boring and talentless I am.. At least I am occasionally insightful, maybe?
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:55AM
crocty at 10:03PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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Maybe it's because, if someoene were to fill the world with shadows, we'd hate them for making us blind, and for being a massive dick.
But if someone filled the world with light we'd be able to see, and give them money for saving our electricity?

Or it could be elaborate racism.

You never know.

Oh, and then there's the whole heaven and hell thing.

Plus, a lot of people are afraid of the dark, but not many people are afraid of light.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 11:52AM
ozoneocean at 10:30PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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Cthonic Cultist
Just putting my thoughts out there.
It's just names for things. ;)

What is “dark” anyway? There's no such thing really, just different energy levels (literally). Absolute dark is a black hole, which doesn't reflect light. But you can't see it, no one can, ever, by definition. So it's sort of irrelevant.

Then you can take darkness and light as relative terms, which they really are… That means one person's dark is another person's light and vice-versa, so it really is a pointless argument. :)

—————-
Basically, in pop-culture it's just a literary convention, a cliche way or representing a simplified, cartoonised version of religion and spiritual-like subjects. It's taken from some of the more basic, hamfisted concepts and symbology in the simplified religions (Christianity for example). All religion is a lot more complicated than that, Christianity included, but simplified concepts like that play very well to the masses ;)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:33PM
Skullbie at 10:43PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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having a ‘good’ or ‘light’ themed main character make them more universally relatable, be it game, comic, book, whatever. They are doing good things and that makes them a more comfortable read then ‘Fatbeard the kitten stabber’.

It also leads to a more satisfying end. The hero's conflict is this ‘darkness’ be it internal or external, and you watch them fight it throughout whatever you're reading, it's a rush at the end when good finally prevails and the hero stops fatbeard from killing kittens once and for all.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:47PM
skoolmunkee at 10:50PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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I for one prefer white chocolate to milk chocolate to dark. All the rest of my feelings around light and dark revolve around my views on chocolate.
  IT'S OLD BATMAN
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:42PM
lefarce at 10:50PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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Cthonic Cultist
Who says that the light is inherently better than the dark? Darkness is merely the absence of light. Why is that bad? You rarely hear of ‘Warriors of Darkness’ saving the world from an evil, searing light god-king or whatever, (though they do exist). Why is that? Do people associate goodness with light more readily, or is it just that so many games and stories already say ‘light is good, dark is bad’ so they just assume that must always be the case?

Just putting my thoughts out there.




EDIT: If you're going for scripture here, darkness gave birth to chaos, and light gave birth to order. God brought light to the darkness and banished chaos, or something along those lines. Also Adam had sex with animals until he FINALLY bugged his home boy God into making a woman BUT LOL SHE WAS A FUCK UP AND CAST OUT OF EDEN, and so Adam was like “Yo' God, whaddup wit dat?” so he made Eve.

And I guess his first wife Lilith just sexed up everything in the outside world giving birth to demons.

This is all off memory, but man do I love the alternate versions of Genesis (SEGA Genesis being the best IMHO)



 
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:33PM
ozoneocean at 10:56PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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skoolmunkee
I for one prefer white chocolate to milk chocolate to dark. All the rest of my feelings around light and dark revolve around my views on chocolate.
then Dark are the good guys! White chocolate has NOTHING on dark! NOTHING!

…But then, it is pretty nice too…
Skullbie
Fatbeard the kitten stabber'.
He's actualy a pretty good guy. Those kittens were evil anyway.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:33PM
Lonnehart at 11:08PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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It all goes back in time to our days as small ape-like beings trying to survive in a wild world. The darkness meant certain death since you couldn't see what predators could be lurking around in it and the light scared the predators off. Even now that primal instinct carries over as the association of dark being bad and light being good. Well, that's what I think anyway…
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:38PM
lefarce at 11:29PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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Well also darkness is the fear of the unknown. We are fearful of what we cannot see.

All-in-all this isnt that hard to figure out. : /

 
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:33PM
ozoneocean at 11:42PM, Feb. 1, 2009
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When people get a tan they want dark to triumph over light…
But then they want their hair bleached that want light to triumph over dark!

Michael Jackson wanted light to triumph over dark, and we all know how badly THAT turned out. :(

I liked him better before…
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:33PM
Custard Trout at 1:04AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Wouldn't warriors of darkness just bump into furniture all the time?
Hey buddy, you should be a Russian Cosmonaut, and here's why.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:01PM
DMH at 1:41AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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ozoneocean
When people get a tan they want dark to triumph over light…
But then they want their hair bleached that want light to triumph over dark!

Michael Jackson wanted light to triumph over dark, and we all know how badly THAT turned out. :(

I liked him better before…

Hah, nice.

But it's as everyone's been saying. Light is associated with the good, because in the light we can see what's coming and what happens. When is it common for vandals, thieves, rapists and murderers to strike? At night, when it's dark.

So do they do that simply because it's harder to be seen in the darkness, or because of some other instinct to be bad during that period?
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:12PM
skoolmunkee at 3:53AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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ozoneocean
When people get a tan they want dark to triumph over light…
But then they want their hair bleached that want light to triumph over dark!

Michael Jackson wanted light to triumph over dark, and we all know how badly THAT turned out. :(

I just choked on my coffee
  IT'S OLD BATMAN
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:42PM
Product Placement at 4:08AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Nuts an interesting discussion and I'm asleep. All the points that I would have made have already been put out there but basically the theme is that good fights for the truth which is revealed in light while evil schemes in the darkness.


I also love this quote from an unknown author: "Light may claim to be the fasted force in the universe but wherever it goes, darkness was there already.
Those were my two cents.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:50PM
Bekefel at 4:43AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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skoolmunkee
ozoneocean
When people get a tan they want dark to triumph over light…
But then they want their hair bleached that want light to triumph over dark!

Michael Jackson wanted light to triumph over dark, and we all know how badly THAT turned out. :(

I just choked on my tea
Please, please, you give me too little credit.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:20AM
bravo1102 at 5:04AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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It's all about that lack of nocturnal vision and that most of we humans like being around and awake by day when that infernal yellow orb hangs in the sky.

Having lived in the night (we rule the night, Thermal and IR night vision etc, etc the 24 hour battlefield… coffee and Mountain Dew are your best friends…) I kind of like it. Dawn is often much more beautiful than dusk. Now if only the dark was easier to see in without hundreds of dollars worth of specialized equipment. :)

and loving real, dark chocolate (cacao, you know real chocolate. White chocolate has no cocoa oil is it. It's not real chocolate without that which gives chocolate its name! Might as well be milk chocolate YUCK! Bitter sweet or semi sweet for me even high cacao content “organic” chocolate; yum.)

I also hate guys in white hats versus guys in black hats.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
ipokino at 9:25AM, Feb. 2, 2009
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The whole ‘conflict’ really comes down to atavistic survival fears. In the days before fire, we diurnal creatures had no alternative to fear that which hunted nocturnally. Those creatures could see us, but we could not see them. Then came fire, and man began to understand the nocturnal a bit better…still reason to fear, but understanding also. Probably at this point religious belief began its slow evolution into the concept of ‘darkness=chaos’ because as everyone ‘knows’ anything can happen in the dark–and often does.

From the ‘Cultist’s' avatar name, it is fairly clear this topic was started as a paean to a “dark” religion. Mind you, Chtultu as a deity or anti-deity is just too darn scary to contemplate…so heres to hoping that he is just the completely imaginary creation of a gifted storyteller… brrr…
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:02PM
AzuJOD at 6:23PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Dark is not evil

Light is not good

Good ol' TV Tropes.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:15AM
cartoonprofessor at 7:17PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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The basis of my comic is this amazing new computational device that (theoretically) will enable the galaxy's inhabitants to travel at the speed o dark.

Light takes time to get anywhere whereas dark is already there… it is everywhere until light comes along and kicks it into the corners.

By travelling at the speed of dark you are literally travelling at the speed of thought, because thought works with anti-matter (which is dark in its most primitive form and essentially the ‘stuff’ of the entire universe), this means instantaneous travel with a mere thought.

The bad guys, the Snamuh travel across the galaxy to steal this device but Min and Fin ‘accidently’ get in their way. (It turns out their new spaceship was designed using the same principles of anti-matter by the same eccentric scientist and somehow ‘knew’ its creator was in trouble so breaks down on Min and Fin near the home planet of said scientist)

Ahh… now I've given away the next few pages of the story… oh well…
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:36AM
Cthonic Cultist at 7:38PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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First off, I didn't think this would generate this much response! I thought it was an interesting topic, but I usually like more ‘nerdy’ topics like this.

I guess I'll just work my way up the comments.

ipokino
The whole ‘conflict’ really comes down to atavistic survival fears. In the days before fire, we diurnal creatures had no alternative to fear that which hunted nocturnally. Those creatures could see us, but we could not see them. Then came fire, and man began to understand the nocturnal a bit better…still reason to fear, but understanding also. Probably at this point religious belief began its slow evolution into the concept of ‘darkness=chaos’ because as everyone ‘knows’ anything can happen in the dark–and often does.

In this day and age, why should we fear the dark? We have things that make it as nothing, as has already been said, we have night vision goggles. We should lose this fear of the dark that seems embedded in our subconscious.

ipokino
From the ‘Cultist’s' avatar name, it is fairly clear this topic was started as a paean to a “dark” religion. Mind you, Chtultu as a deity or anti-deity is just too darn scary to contemplate…so heres to hoping that he is just the completely imaginary creation of a gifted storyteller… brrr…

Cthuhlu represents the unknown, as does darkness, but why fear the unknown? Should you not go out and attempt to make it KNOWN? Wouldn't that solve the fear?

bravo1102
It's all about that lack of nocturnal vision and that most of we humans like being around and awake by day when that infernal yellow orb hangs in the sky.



I also hate guys in white hats versus guys in black hats.

Right on! That blasted orb sears our flesh and makes it unbearable to be outside! Hssss, it burns us!

DMH
But it's as everyone's been saying. Light is associated with the good, because in the light we can see what's coming and what happens. When is it common for vandals, thieves, rapists and murderers to strike? At night, when it's dark.

So do they do that simply because it's harder to be seen in the darkness, or because of some other instinct to be bad during that period?

Sure you can see, but can light not blind more permanently than darkness? Light can sear your orbs until you can never see again, while it would take many years of darkness to do something like that. Also, vandals, thieves, rapists and murderers do what they do at any time of day. They don't care, as long as they are out of sight, and although darkness would lend to that it hardly is a major factor by me. (There probably are more crimes committed at night than during day, but… Bah, that is not important!)

They do it because they are bad people, and bad people do bad things. They do it in the dark because yes, it is harder to be seen and caught in the dark than in the light.

Custard Trout
Wouldn't warriors of darkness just bump into furniture all the time?

No way! Surely they could see dark instead of light? Their lamps would suck the light out of the air, and their sun is an orb of a similar substance, whereas the moon is a bright ball of searing light. Hsss!

lefarce
Well also darkness is the fear of the unknown. We are fearful of what we cannot see.

All-in-all this isnt that hard to figure out. : /

But that wasn't really what I meant to ask. I meant to ask why people associate it with evil. Why is what you fear evil? That sounds foolish to me, but it would seem to be the case. So why no hero of darkness? Not just an antihero, but a hero from the unknown! Fighting to keep things hidden that best remain hidden, ect.



OH NO! Heartless! Well, he's a bad example. Power is more what he cared about, not whether it was a manifestation of good.

lefarce
EDIT: If you're going for scripture here, darkness gave birth to chaos, and light gave birth to order. God brought light to the darkness and banished chaos, or something along those lines. Also Adam had sex with animals until he FINALLY bugged his home boy God into making a woman BUT LOL SHE WAS A FUCK UP AND CAST OUT OF EDEN, and so Adam was like “Yo' God, whaddup wit dat?” so he made Eve.

And I guess his first wife Lilith just sexed up everything in the outside world giving birth to demons.

This is all off memory, but man do I love the alternate versions of Genesis (SEGA Genesis being the best IMHO)

Not really going for scripture, but it follows along those lines in many stories and games, as I said.

Skullbie
having a ‘good’ or ‘light’ themed main character make them more universally relatable, be it game, comic, book, whatever. They are doing good things and that makes them a more comfortable read then ‘Fatbeard the kitten stabber’.

It also leads to a more satisfying end. The hero's conflict is this ‘darkness’ be it internal or external, and you watch them fight it throughout whatever you're reading, it's a rush at the end when good finally prevails and the hero stops fatbeard from killing kittens once and for all.


Why is light good? Light has the capacity for evil, surely the sun is an example if you want to look at it METTTTAFOORRIKALLEE! It burns us, and makes things unpleasantly hot, even kills people. Why? Because it is EVIL! That is about as good an argument to me as saying ‘Ooo, I can’t see in the dark! My inferior eyes mean the dark is EVIL!'. Also, Fatbeard is an awesome name. And perhaps he is a fisherman? http://www.peta.org/sea_kittens/about.asp

ozoneocean
Basically, in pop-culture it's just a literary convention, a cliche way or representing a simplified, cartoonised version of religion and spiritual-like subjects. It's taken from some of the more basic, hamfisted concepts and symbology in the simplified religions (Christianity for example). All religion is a lot more complicated than that, Christianity included, but simplified concepts like that play very well to the masses ;)

Yeah, I kind of knew from the many, MANY references to light as good in many, many books and games. It DOES sit well with the masses, but not me! I tend to look at things a little differently, so I don't really like it when a poor little symbol like darkness is confined to it's role as the shield of evil, or the servant of satan. Yeah, religion had to be made more consumable at it's early stages to aid people in understanding it.

crocty
Maybe it's because, if someoene were to fill the world with shadows, we'd hate them for making us blind, and for being a massive dick.
But if someone filled the world with light we'd be able to see, and give them money for saving our electricity?

Or it could be elaborate racism.

You never know.

Oh, and then there's the whole heaven and hell thing.

Plus, a lot of people are afraid of the dark, but not many people are afraid of light.

I dunno, the world is already full of shadows. Unless you mean shadows in places where there should be no shadows, then that would indeed be a dick move.

But the same would go with light. Why would you want to be visible at every moment of your life, eh?

Why not fear the light? There could be a sniper out there, waiting for a head to pop out! Or some kind of solar powered robot monster, see? The light brings only harm!

(Wow, that is a decent chunk of text there. Maybe more people will respond?)
Boring and talentless I am.. At least I am occasionally insightful, maybe?
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:55AM
Cthonic Cultist at 7:41PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Heh. Someone responded while I was writing my textbawkz.

cartoonprofessor
The basis of my comic is this amazing new computational device that (theoretically) will enable the galaxy's inhabitants to travel at the speed o dark.

Light takes time to get anywhere whereas dark is already there… it is everywhere until light comes along and kicks it into the corners.

By travelling at the speed of dark you are literally travelling at the speed of thought, because thought works with anti-matter (which is dark in its most primitive form and essentially the ‘stuff’ of the entire universe), this means instantaneous travel with a mere thought.

The bad guys, the Snamuh travel across the galaxy to steal this device but Min and Fin ‘accidently’ get in their way. (It turns out their new spaceship was designed using the same principles of anti-matter by the same eccentric scientist and somehow ‘knew’ its creator was in trouble so breaks down on Min and Fin near the home planet of said scientist)

Ahh… now I've given away the next few pages of the story… oh well…

But is the darkness feared and reviled, or praised as a new method of travel, better than light?
Boring and talentless I am.. At least I am occasionally insightful, maybe?
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:55AM
anise shaw at 10:22PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Ahh, good old homebrewed racism! That's what I blame.

Oh, and over simplified storylines that could do with a little character development rather than overused meta archetypes.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
lefarce at 10:33PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Someone
But that wasn't really what I meant to ask. I meant to ask why people associate it with evil. Why is what you fear evil? That sounds foolish to me,

Because you typically fear what you cannot see, which is covered by darkness. Generally good things arent feared. Yes there are people who fear love and joy, but those people arent all there in the head. Darkness, in general, is associated with a fear of the unknown and chaos, pure and simple. You are more likely to fear what you cannot see thatn what you can, and thus FART

I mean all-in-all it's very easy to follow. There really isnt a “why”. It's just how things are.

 
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:33PM
anise shaw at 10:43PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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lefarce
Someone
But that wasn't really what I meant to ask. I meant to ask why people associate it with evil. Why is what you fear evil? That sounds foolish to me,

Because you typically fear what you cannot see, which is covered by darkness. Generally good things arent feared. Yes there are people who fear love and joy, but those people arent all there in the head. Darkness, in general, is associated with a fear of the unknown and chaos, pure and simple. You are more likely to fear what you cannot see thatn what you can, and thus FART

I mean all-in-all it's very easy to follow. There really isnt a “why”. It's just how things are.

There seems to be a big jump that people are making between physical darkness and the characteristics used as an abstract definition of darkness in terms of “evil”. I don't see how “predators lurk in the shadows” directly translates into “the dude that wears a black cape with goth-like make-up doing things only for the sake of chaos is ‘darkness’” without a lot of cultural abstraction. With culture, nothing is “just how things are”. That's simply naturalisation after hegemony has become transparent. It's not how things are naturally, it's how we've abstracted them to be and we can work to change these things anytime we want.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:53AM
ozoneocean at 10:43PM, Feb. 2, 2009
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Cthonic Cultist
ozoneocean
Basically, in pop-culture it's just a literary convention, a cliche way or representing a simplified, cartoonised version of religion and spiritual-like subjects. It's taken from some of the more basic, hamfisted concepts and symbology in the simplified religions (Christianity for example). All religion is a lot more complicated than that, Christianity included, but simplified concepts like that play very well to the masses ;)

Yeah, I kind of knew from the many, MANY references to light as good in many, many books and games. It DOES sit well with the masses, but not me! I tend to look at things a little differently, so I don't really like it when a poor little symbol like darkness is confined to it's role as the shield of evil, or the servant of satan. Yeah, religion had to be made more consumable at it's early stages to aid people in understanding it.
I'd say “later” stages rather that early. In religion it's not that old a concept really.

People go on about “atavistic” notions, but most Light/dark concepts people think there are in culture are filtered through the layer of the more modern Judaeo/Christian/Islamic religions that have the same root. And even then that stuff is surface, not intrinsic. -So older religions and those from other cultures are seen through that lens.

Nothing bad about that, it's just what happens when older cultures die out and new ones replace them.

The thing people forget when they look back and imagine the “primitive” days is that they can't escape their modern perspective. You see, darkness is a lot more frightening and dangerous to those who think they can control the light ;)
Our distant ancestors didn't HAVE electricity, candles, or even fire. Day was as much a part of their world as night.

It's like how we wear clothes to protect ourselves from heat and cold, embarrassment, or sexual advances… And yet there are people who NEVER wear clothes and yet don't have much of a problem with any of that stuff lol!
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:33PM
Bekefel at 12:49AM, Feb. 3, 2009
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Thats strike two lefarce.

one more and your ded
Please, please, you give me too little credit.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:20AM
Cthonic Cultist at 3:29AM, Feb. 3, 2009
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ozoneocean
The thing people forget when they look back and imagine the “primitive” days is that they can't escape their modern perspective. You see, darkness is a lot more frightening and dangerous to those who think they can control the light ;)
Our distant ancestors didn't HAVE electricity, candles, or even fire. Day was as much a part of their world as night.

Oh yeah? You never heard of the primitive terrorbots made by evil scientist neanderthals as revenge for their uncalled for aggression by humans?! I bet you haven't!
Boring and talentless I am.. At least I am occasionally insightful, maybe?
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:55AM
ozoneocean at 3:38AM, Feb. 3, 2009
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Cthonic Cultist
Oh yeah? You never heard of the primitive terrorbots made by evil scientist neanderthals as revenge for their uncalled for aggression by humans?! I bet you haven't!
On the contrary.

I was there. My time machine is in the backroom, recharging as I type!
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:33PM
mechanical_lullaby at 3:50AM, Feb. 3, 2009
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Cthonic Cultist
Who says that the light is inherently better than the dark? Darkness is merely the absence of light. Why is that bad? You rarely hear of ‘Warriors of Darkness’ saving the world from an evil, searing light god-king or whatever, (though they do exist). Why is that? Do people associate goodness with light more readily, or is it just that so many games and stories already say ‘light is good, dark is bad’ so they just assume that must always be the case?

Just putting my thoughts out there.
Personally, I'm just up and down with the sun. Because I'm solar energized. SOLAR POWA GO. So, yeah, darkness is pretty bad for me because it wastes my battery and I end up running out of power in the middle of a dark alley way and someone takes advantage of my solarless body. And then I'm addicted to heroin.

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:57PM
bravo1102 at 4:51AM, Feb. 3, 2009
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And to think I though Chthonic meant under earth deities as in Greek mythology. That's the more general terminology I learned in college where I also discovered the Cthulhu mythos which I have to avoid in my comic lest it become a tribute comic.

Gods of light may just be gods who live in the light of the sun as opposed to the gods of dark who abide out of the sunlight. It doesn't necessarily have anything to do with good and evil as Ozone has pointed out. Them there pagans had a different way of looking at light and darkness. Enlightenment was often offered in the dark as opposed to being a transition from light to dark.

Some recommended books and : The Demon Haunted World by Carl Sagan and A World Lit Only by Fire by William Manchester. Lots of fun to read.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM

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