I am increasingly thinking that the author George RR Martin has the love and contradictions it causes in life as one of the central, if not the central, theme, in his book “A Game of Thrones”.
I am reading a Jon Snow chapter again where the Maester Aemon talks to Jon about the reason why the men of the Night Watch are sworn to not marry or father children (page 662). Simply put, he says that it is almost impossible to carry on a duty or being dedicated to a cause/honour unless love is eliminated from their life, otherwise at one point or the other, there will be a situation when one needs to choose (love over duty/honour, or vice versa) (to some extend of course, as their lives do not exclude the brotherly love they have for each other. I believe this is even necessary should they want to keep their order together).
Maester Aemon says that “we are only human, and the gods have fashioned us for love. That is our great glory, and our great tragedy“.
It is indeed, especially in this book.
I have not read the entire series of the books yet but so far, we have this theme meshed up in this saga in many different ways, by many different characters (Jamie Lannister, Ned Stark, King Robert).
Love is such a strong, influential feeling. I want to ask; when was the last time one has made a choice (right or wrong) for love, because of love?
On a separate note, I love it when Master Aemon says Jon that as someone who has gone through this choice before (after he makes it known to Jon that he is a Targaryen), he cannot say whether Jon should stay or go (at that time, Jon’s father Ned Stark has been arrested for treason charges against King Joffrey) and whatever Jon chooses, he is the one to live with the consequences of the choice for the rest of his life (i.e. Aeron did not impose any choice on Jon, which is admirable).
I guess Maester Aemon has suffered too much of his own choice (of not leaving the Night Watch to help his brother and his family). Apparently, when he made his choice it was the right choice. But this does not make it the right choice for all the time.
Love, duty, honour, values, choices, contradictions, and regrets; life as it is.
I am loving this book deeper and deeper every day.