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What was the point of finding Will's father?

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What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby coulterfan692 » Sun Nov 21, 2010 5:51 am

I don't really get why the alethiometer wanted Lyra to help Will find his father. They spent the whole book looking for him and then Will did and the only thing his father told him was to help Lord Asriel which he didn't. So can anyone tell me why that was essential to for Lyra to do.
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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby latency » Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:40 am

Although the Alethiometer wanted Will to find his father, and thus get the knife to Lord Asriel, it was WIll and Lyra's choice to ignore John Parry's instructions.

The Alethiometer does not predict choices like this, so wouldn't have known.

The other thing is Lyra fulfilling her destiny without knowing, if the Alethiometer had told them to go to the world of the dead, it would not have been their choice to go there and open a window out on other side.

There's no solid reason, things just don't go to plan.
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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby Multiverse » Tue Dec 21, 2010 1:07 pm

The Alethiometer wanted Lyra to go to the world of the death, a task for which she needed Will´s assistance as the knife-bearer. For Will to want to take her there, he needed to know that his father was dead, something he could only learn with the help of Lyra - which is why the Alethiometer told her so.

At least, that´s what I can make from it. =\

@Latency: Did the Alethiometer want to get the knife to Lord Asriel? In my understanding, the Alethiometer just wanted things to happen exactly as they did.

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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby latency » Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:30 pm

Well... in second though, the alethiometer never gave direct instructions to go to Asriel with the knife, it just said to seek out John Parry, but then it never told them to go to the world of the dead either. So we're both wrong in that respect.

The problem is, the alethiometer can only really answer the questions Lyra puts to it, although it says unrelated things now and then, it still didn't direct them to Asriel or the World fo the Dead...
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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby Multiverse » Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:53 pm

I recall, though, that at some point while they were on their way to the world of the dead, Lyra asked whether they were doing the right thing. Here, the quote:

That was a surprise, and not a happy one. But she went on and asked: How can we get to the land of the dead?
The answer came: Go down. Follow the knife. Go onwards. Follow the knife.
And finally she asked hesitantly, half-ashamed: Is this the right thing to do?
Yes, said the alethiometer instantly. Yes.

-TAS, page 251 in the British edition.

Personally I took this as an assurance that the alethiometer wants them to do what they did.

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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby latency » Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:09 pm

Mmmm... good reference.

Maybe the point of Will finding his father was in order to defy him and do his own thing then.
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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby Multiverse » Sun Dec 26, 2010 9:21 pm

Thanks. =)

I suppose so, yes.

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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby JohnT » Sun Jan 02, 2011 2:16 am

Well, I'm surprised no one has pointed it out, but John Parry saved Will's life. Without his special bloodmoss ointment, Will would have died from blood loss. Kinda hard to have the Amber Spyglass if Will is dead...
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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby jfrcoates » Sun Jan 02, 2011 2:57 am

JohnT wrote:Well, I'm surprised no one has pointed it out, but John Parry saved Will's life. Without his special bloodmoss ointment, Will would have died from blood loss. Kinda hard to have the Amber Spyglass if Will is dead...


That is a very good point and certainly does seem to have been overlooked.
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Re: What was the point of finding Will's father?

Postby aurum sun » Fri Mar 09, 2012 5:26 pm

Another reason they were to find Will's father was to meet the two angles. Who were,like so many characters indespensible. Without meeting them Will would never have found Lyra again. And Lyra would have been shot by the assassin priest.
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