In A Crown of Swords, Rand was linked with Moridin when their balefires of opposing Powers touched. Ever since then Rand has felt increasingly nauseous and dizzy when he touches saidin or lets go of it, and can see Moridin’s face. It is increasingly incapacitating.
The Dark One’s taint on the male half of the Source was nauseating to anyone who sensed it:
”It will be wonderful, channelling without the taint, my Lord Dragon, he [Eben] said excitedly…:That always makes me want to empty my belly, if I think on it.”But not as badly as Rand ends up feeling.
- Winter’s Heart, With the Choedan Kal
Dizziness too can come from the Dark One – from attracting his attention:
”Shai'tan is dead," he [Rand] said harshly, and abruptly the room seemed to lurch. He grabbed his head as waves of dizziness sloshed through him.at least when the Dragon, the Creator’s champion born to fight the Dark One, does so. The touch of the Dark One being antithetical to Creation revolts the body and deranges the mind.
"You fool! You pure, blind, idiotic fool! Naming the Dark One, bringing his attention down on you! Don't you have enough trouble?"
"He's dead," Rand muttered, rubbing his head. He swallowed. The dizziness was already fading.
- The Great Hunt, Dark Prophecy
Some of the Dark One’s taint was inserted into Rand’s body in Falme, yet he had no symptoms of dizziness or nausea associated with channelling until Lord of Chaos when he went to attend to the Shadar Logoth Waygate:
From the first flow he channeled, the taint seemed to pulse inside him, a slowly building vibration. It must have been the evil in Shadar Logoth itself, a resonance of evil to evil. Even in the Void he felt dizzy from those reverberations, as though the world swung beneath his feet in time to them; they made him want to vomit up everything he had ever eaten.These symptoms, while as extreme as those he later felt, did not continue after leaving Shadar Logoth though. They were due to the Dark One’s taint in his side and the evil in Shadar Logoth reacting to each other. Rand was not wounded by Fain until late in A Crown of Swords and Flinn sealed away the two wounds fairly promptly. I think Flinn’s treatment was effective because Rand had no problem channelling during the attack on Sammael and because the wounds, contrary to Flinn’s expectations, did not change after the cleansing of saidin.
- Lord of Chaos, To Shadar Logoth
When Rand seized saidin prior to linking with Nynaeve he expected to feel nauseous, but did not, instead he saw Moridin’s face:
He placed his hands on the ground beside him against the sickness that would strike when he took hold of the Source again, but a different dizziness suddenly spun his head. For a heartbeat, a vague face filled his eyes, blotting out Nynaeve, a man’s face, almost recognisable.Moridin’s link to Rand was formed at Shadar Logoth at the end of A Crown of Swords. By The Path of Daggers, Floating Like Snow, nine days later, Rand is feeling increasingly dizzy and nauseous when he seizes saidin; a “new sickness” and a “recent problem”:
- Winter’s Heart, With the Choedan Kal
Reluctantly he let go of the Power, forced himself not to hang on like a man clutching salvation with his fingernails as life and filth drained from him together. For an instant, he saw double; the world seemed to tilt dizzily. That was a recent problem, and he worried it might be part of the sickness that killed men whoHe has to be careful when channelling not to be distracted by the nausea or dizziness. When Rand dreams, he sometimes looks like Moridin in the dream, rather than himself, or Lews Therin (The Path of Daggers, Answering the Summons.) In The Path of Daggers, A Time For Iron, he even feels ill when he releases saidin and in Winter’s Heart Prologue he starts to see Moridin’s face and the symptoms appear when he is not touching saidin at all. The latter probably occurs Moridin is channelling.
channeled, but the dizziness never lasted more than moments.
- The Path of Daggers, Floating Like Snow
Since the second side wound attacking the first and the link with Moridin occurred fairly close together it is not certain which is responsible for the extreme nausea and dizziness but the fact that the illness is accompanied by visions of Moridin’s face indicates the link is the more likely culprit, as is the fact that Rand feels ill when Moridin channels and Rand is not touching the Source. Even more indicative is that Moridin is affected in a similar way to Rand:
Yet with saidin came the inevitable violent nausea, the almost overwhelming desire to double over and empty himself of every meal he had ever eaten… The face of the man from Shadar Logoth floated in his head for a moment. He looked furious. And near to sicking up. Without any doubt he was aware of Rand in that moment, and Rand of him. Move a hair in any direction, and they would touch. No more than a hair.Not only can each see the other, but they are aware of each other when this occurs:
- Knife of Dreams, Within The Stone
Abruptly another image was floating his head, a man's face, and his breath caught. For the first time, it came without any dizziness.Neither was channelling at the time, either – hence no illness. Rand had just finished seeing both Mat and Perrin through his links to them when this sighting of Moridin occurred. It is as though using the ta’veren links to the max triggers his link to Moridin without the usual channelling.
For the first time, he could see it clearly in the moments before it vanished. A blue-eyed man with a square chin, perhaps a few years older than himself. Or rather, he saw it clearly for the first time in a long while. It was the face of the stranger who had saved his life in Shadar Logoth when he fought Sammael. Worse. . . .
He was aware of me, Lews Therin said. He sounded sane for a change. Sometimes he did, but the madness always returned eventually. How can a face appearing in my mind be aware of me?
If you don't know, how do you expect me to? Rand thought. But I was aware of him, as well. It had been a strange sensation, as if he were . . . touching . . . the other man somehow. Only not physically. A residue hung on. It seemed he only had to move a hair's breadth, in any direction to touch him again. I think he saw my face, too.
- Knife of Dreams, Vows
The ultimate consequences of the link where Rand, desperate to escape Semirhage’s sadism, draws on the True Power through his link to Moridin:
At that moment he grew aware of a strange force. It was like a reservoir of water, boiling and churning just beyond his view. He reached toward it with his mind.Rand feels ill every time he seizes saidin, but he channelled the True Power “okay” in the sense of not being ill. Actually he felt great, and seriously tempted to use the True Power again. Such is its corruption that only by balancing the lure of the True Power with that of an enormous amount of the Creator’s One Power available through the Choedan Kal could Rand resist the temptation. The Land sure was sickened by its Champion using the True Power though.
A clouded face flashed before Rand's own, one whose features he couldn't quite make out. It was gone in a moment.
And Rand found himself filled with an alien power. Not saidin, not saidar, but something else.
Something he'd never felt before.
Oh, Light, Lews Therin suddenly screamed. That's impossible! We can't use it! Cast it away! That is death we hold, death and betrayal.
It is HIM.
Rand closed his eyes as he knelt above Min, then he channeled the strange, unknown force. Energy and life surged through him, a torrent of power like saidin, only ten times as sweet and a hundred times as violent. It made him alive, made him realize that he'd never been alive before. It gave him such strength as he'd never imagined. It rivaled, even, the power he'd held when drawing from the Choedan Kal.
He screamed, in both rapture and rage, and wove enormous spears of Fire and Air.
- The Gathering Storm, The Last That Could Be Done
We know Moridin is sickened when Rand seizes saidin. It would be interesting to know if Moridin feels the reverse of Rand when channelling: ie okay when channelling saidin, ill channelling the True Power. Or has the Dark One neatly trapped them both and can neither channel saidin without sickness, but only the True Power?
Whatever else, the link certainly incapacitated Rand as a channeller.
While Rand’s link with Moridin is wrong, leading to corruption and death, his link to the other two ta’veren is right, bringing reassurance and…gasp…information with the potential for cooperation. The link allows the three to sense each other and see what each other is doing.
Rand first began to sense a link to Mat and Perrin when he was locked in tne beox by Elaida's Embassy with only pain and LEws Therin for company:
Something flashed in his mind. Not images, just flickers of color and motion. For some reason they made him think of Mat, and Perrin. The flashes had begun inside the chest, them and a thousand more hallucinations. In the chest, where Galina and Brian and Katerine and the rest stuffed him every day after he was beaten.Perrin senses his link to Mat and Rand before Mat does:
- A Crown of Swords, Pitfalls and Tripwires.
As always of late when he thought of Rand, colors swirled in his head, and as always, he ignored them.and is the first of the three to see clear visions of the others rather than swirls of colours.
- Winter’s Heart, Prologue
Mat’s first ‘vision’ of colour swirls occurs by Winter’s Heart, In Need of a Bellfounder:
He grimaced and rubbed at his forehead as a faint rush of colors seemed to swirl inside his head. That happened lately whenever he thought about either man.After his link with Moridin is formed, Rand has trouble with his visions of Mat and Perrin – they make him stumble:
And Mat was not here? Had never been here, apparently. Colors whirled in his head, almost an image he could make out. In a heartbeat it vanished, but he staggered.perhaps because the extra link interferes. But he soon is no longer disconcerted by them, and uses them even – unlike his link to Moridin which continues to be a source of discomfort, sickness and corruption until at least The Gathering Storm.
- Winter’s Heart, Ideas of Importance
For all three ta’veren it takes time – or practise – for the colours to resolve into precise visions of what the others are doing.
The Really Big Event of Rand cleansing saidin causes colour swirls to form unbidden in Mat’s and Perrin’s minds, in Perrin’s case resolving into his first clear vision of Rand, but both Mat and Perrin knew that Rand was behind the vast usage of the Power. Mat and Perrin will probably sense other Really Big Events that happen to Rand unbidden in this way – unless they have gone questing in another world.
The psychic connection of the three ta’veren by the Pattern is ‘right’ or healthy and will be crucial in the Last Battle not just for planning battles, but because the three will support the world spiritually as well as physically against the Dark One’s onslaught: “the three shall be one”, as prophesied in the Karaethon Cycle; (see Numbers Symbolism essay regarding the significance of Three versus One). The three-way link allows this to happen.
This situation can be likened to that predicted in Zoroastrian end times (and Jordan had quite a number of books in his library on Asian religions according to Maria and Alan at JordanCon). Saoshyans, the final saviour of the world, will be conceived by a virgin, and he will overcome the power of evil at the end of time and resurrect the bodies of the dead. Saoshyans and six helpers will then lead the work in the world, communicating with each other miraculously (Encyclopaedia Britannica). (For Rand’s parallels to Saoshyans see Rand essay.) Likewise the three ta’veren are each able to see what the others are doing by a vision through swirling colours and together will hopefully defeat the Shadow with the important difference of preventing the end of time.