Friday Five: Alignment

  1. In Dungeons and Dragons, you are asked to select an alignment: Do you favor lawfulness or chaos? Are you on the side of good or evil? Your answers define your alignment: Lawful Good, Lawful Neutral, Lawful Evil, Neutral Good, (true) Neutral, Neutral Evil, Chaotic Good, Chaotic Neutral, and Chaotic Evil. Which are you? On the way home from wherever we were the other night, my boyfriend and I started talking about his mom and her personal beliefs, and he mentioned how gray areas are really difficult for her–for her, things must be one way or the other and there is no in-between. And I joked that I should start up a conversation with her sometime about my beliefs because they’d blow her mind. They’re a bit opposite. I believe in gray areas, and I believe that what’s truly right and what’s legal don’t always overlap. I think laws are important, but they’re not always good and not always worth following. And I’m definitely on the side of good. So I’d say I’d be a Neutral Good.
  2. In Veronica Roth’s Divergent, set in a post-apocalyptic utopian society, citizens choose factions based on competence and values. The Dauntless are the brave, the Amity are the peaceful, the Erudite are the intelligent, the Abnegation are the selfless, and the Candor are the honest. Which faction would you test most competent for, and which would you choose strictly on your values? I’d like to read this series someday, in part because I feel like I’d have a better idea of which I’d truly align with. My guess is I’d test most competent for honest, Candor. I almost never lie, and I don’t exactly hide things–this blog is often proof of that. If I were to choose on my values, it would be a real struggle because I can see myself in all but bravery, just because it’s something I don’t think I have much of. But I value peace, intelligence, and selflessness, and I like to think I exhibit them, too. I certainly hope I do.
  3. You’ve probably answered this before, but answer it again. In J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, students are sorted into houses based (primarily) on character. Gryffindor values courage, Hufflepuff values loyalty, Ravenclaw values cleverness, and Slytherin values ambition. Which are you, and which is the most recent love of your life? According to Pottermore, which must be taken as gospel since Rowling created it, I’m a Slytherin. And as much as that’s presented as being evil in the series, at least in some ways, I can see it when it’s described as ambition. I have goals–including some lofty ones–and I do work to achieve them. The love of my life would be my boyfriend, Paul, of course, and I’d say he’s a Ravenclaw. He’s very smart, and it comes through in just about everything he does.
  4. In the late 1970s, a Saturday morning cartoon called Laff-A-Lympicspitted characters from different Hanna-Barbera programs in a Battle of the Network Stars kind of weekly competition. The Scoobie Doobies were captained by Scooby-Doo and made up of then-current Hanna-Barbera characters, including the entire Scooby-Doo gang, Dynomutt, Captain Caveman, Speedy Buggy, and Hong Kong Phooey. The Yogi Yahooeys were captained by Yogi Bear and made up of characters from the 50s and 60s Hanna-Barbera programs, including Huckleberry Hound, Augie Doggy (and Doggie Daddy), Quickdraw McGraw, and Grape Ape. The Really Rottens were the villains, captained by an original character named Mumbly and made up of original bad-guy characters who cheated at every opportunity. Which team do you belong to? And if you remember the program, which team did you cheer for? I’m definitely too young to remember when this was actually on, but I’m familiar with most of the characters. I’m most familiar with The Yogi Yahooeys, but here’s where I have to make a confession–I was never a big fan of these cartoons, so I dislike most of these characters. Except the Scooby-Doo gang. I like them, and my brother loved that cartoon, so I saw a lot of it by extension. So I’d have to go with them.
  5. In the collectible card game Magic: The Gathering, players draw mana (energy) from any of five different lands, resulting in different magical abilities. The Plains generate white magic (healing, order, protection, light), the Forests generate green magic (growth, strength, life, ferocity), the Islands generate blue magic (deceit, logic, illusion, knowledge, manipulation), the Mountains generate red magic (fury, passion, freedom, impulse, fire), and the Swamps generate black magic (death, ambition, darkness). From which lands do you generate your power, and which tend to rub you the wrong way? I may come back to this and edit my answer later–Paul actually plays, so I’d like to hear which he thinks I’d generate power from. Personally, probably Plains because it’s the most positive and beneficial. That said, every single one has qualities I like and value. I like everything about Forests, and the only reason I didn’t pick it is just because Plains sounded slightly more appealing, but those are all things I like and think are important. I like the logic and knowledge of the Islands, but not deceit, illusion, and manipulation, although I will be honest and say I’m capable of manipulation when I want to be. I like all but the fury of the Mountains because I am a very passionate person and I value freedom. And even the Swamps have some good in ambition. For all those same reasons, you’d have a hard time finding a single one that rubs me the wrong way, but the Islands would probably be the winner there. I have little tolerance for deception and manipulation, especially when both have been used against me as well as people I love. Look into the signs of emotional manipulation sometime.

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