—Lews Therin Telamon to Rand al'Thor
Lews Therin Telamon (pronounced: LOOZ THEH-rihn TEHL-ah-mon) was the Dragon during the War of Power. He was the leader of the forces of Light and was well respected all over the world. He was able to summon the Nine Rods of Dominion, as well as being the highest rank of Aes Sedai, wearing the Ring of Tamyrlin. He was as strong in the Power as a man could be and was the "First Among Servants."
Lews Therin was the most powerful Aes Sedai during the Age of Legends, rivaled only by Elan Morin Tedronai. He wrote many successful books and held high offices with great success, including the High Seat of the Hall of Servants. Although one of the most powerful men to be able to channel, he is not particularly skilled in Tel'aran'rhiod. After his relationship with Mierin Eronaile soured, he married Ilyena Sunhair. At some stage he had children to her. Years later, the War of Power began, and Lews Therin was named general of the forces of the Light, leading them to many great victories. At some time during the War of Power he humbled Ishamael in the Hall of Servants and defeated him at the Gates of Paaran Disen.
Due to Lews Therin's power, envy overtook many of Lews Therin's greatest generals such as Tel Janin Aellinsar, Duram Laddel Cham, Barid Bel Medar, and potentially others who remain unknown and caused them to defect to the Shadow, shifting the war in favor of the Shadow. The Aes Sedai began creating the Choedan Kal in hopes of defeating the Dark One by brute force. As soon as they were finished, the forces of the Shadow overtook the city in which they were being built. Fortunately, the invaders were ignorant of the existence of the Choedan Kal. The women Aes Sedai were insistent on attempting to recapture the city, while Lews Therin proposed a decisive strike at Shayol Ghul, where they would place seven seals to seal the Dark One away again. Latra Posae Decume convinced all the strong female Aes Sedai to oppose this, which created the Fateful Concord.
Death and Dragonmount
Because he believed Latra Posae's plan that involved retaking a city that was heavily occupied by forces of the Shadow was riskier than his own plan, Lews Therin and the Hundred Companions took it on themselves to seal the Bore with the seven seals without the aid of the female channelers. While this plan succeeded in temporarily closing the Bore, the Dark One tainted saidin in his counter-stroke. The reason for the weakness of the seal has been theorized by Rand al'Thor to have been caused because only saidin was used to create the seal and because the Dark One was allowed to touch the seals. Many of the companions went insane instantly, including Lews Therin himself. Lews Therin returned to kill all of his family and many friends, causing people to later rename him "Lews Therin Kinslayer." Healed of his madness by Ishamael and horrified by his actions, he drew too much of the One Power and killed himself, causing the creation of Dragonmount and inadvertently diverting the river Erinin creating what is now known as the island of Tar Valon. He was approximately 400 years old at his death.
—Moghedien, describing Lews Therin
Lews Therin has been reincarnated in the Third Age as Rand al'Thor. While Rand al'Thor is a separate personality from Lews Therin, he has the same soul as Lews Therin. Lews Therin's personality and voice surfaced in Rand's mind for a time. It was unclear, at first, if the voice of Lews Therin in Rand's head was a separate being, or if it was a delusion of Rand's due to the effects of the taint or due to stress. Rand held conversations with this voice, as he thought of it as a separate being.
"Lews Therin" seemed to begin providing Rand access to memories from his past life, granting him first hand knowledge of all the Forsaken, including traits about Lanfear and Sammael in particular. With those memories came many powerful weavings, such as the shield he erected against Asmodean when they fight. "Lews Therin" also seemed to aid Rand in breaking the shield around him when he was kidnapped by the Aes Sedai sent by Elaida do Avriny a'Roihan.
Though "Lews Therin" manifested as a distinctly different personality from Rand, "he" appeared to be affected by Rand. For example, when Rand developed claustrophobia during his imprisonment with the Aes Sedai sent by Elaida, "Lews Therin" seemed to develop it too.
Rand also began picking up habits from his past life the more his "Lews Therin" personality manifested, such as humming and rubbing his ear with his thumb while in the presence of a beautiful woman. Talents from his past life also began to surface, like an artistic ability that he had possessed as Lews Therin, but didn't have so far as Rand.
Taim and the Black Tower
Cleansing of saidin
After Rand cleansed saidin, "Lews Therin" appeared to act a touch less mad. "He" appeared to continue to increase his presence, with Rand believing that Lews Therin intended to take over his body.
Battle for saidin
When Trollocs attacked Algarin Pendaloan's manor, "Lews Therin" seemed to manage to snatch saidin before Rand did. "He" then set to destroying the Trollocs with weaves such as Blossoms of Fire and Deathgates, which hadn't been used in millennia. The other Asha'man present picked up these weaves and also began to use them on the Trollocs. During the battle, "Lews Therin" moaned about not being able to move his hands. When Rand moved them into view, "Lews Therin" sent Arrows of Fire from Rand's fingertips into the Trollocs. When the battle was over, "Lews Therin" refused to let go of saidin, and began to draw more and more of the One Power. Rand managed to reach an agreement with "Lews Therin." He agreed they would die together at Tarmon Gai'don, which caused Lews Therin to let go of the One Power.
When Rand held a meeting with what he believed was the Daughter of the Nine Moons, Cadsuane Melaidhrin's ter'angreal disrupted the disguise, revealing it to be Semirhage. "Lews Therin" recognized her, and reached for saidin at the same time as Rand. The pause allowed Semirhage to send a fireball and singe one of Rand's hands off. "Lews Therin" was terrified of Semirhage. When Semirhage was captured, she revealed that the voice of "Lews Therin" in Rand's head was a sign of madness. She wondered how long Rand could be trusted before he, or "Lews Therin," sought their deaths and all those around them.
While Rand stood on top of Dragonmount and contemplated using the Choedan Kal to destroy the Pattern and all existence, his realization about his madness began after "Lews Therin" muttered about having a second chance, which indicated that that he did something wrong that now needs to be corrected by Rand. Spurred by this, Rand destroyed the keystone to the Choedan Kal by drawing as much of saidin as he could through it and pushing it back in. Rand suddenly realized that he and Lews Therin were not two different men and never had been. After this, Rand laughed truly for the first time in a long while.
Rand has confirmed to Egwene al'Vere that both he and Lews Therin are one and the same now. Rand's eyes reflect the accrued wisdom of Lews Therin but his memories and his entire life appear as a clear dream, though as one of Rand's own dreams. This is an indication that the Lews Therin split personality is gone for good now, but lives on in Rand.
Titles and other names that refer to Lews Therin Telamon:
- Lord of the Morning
- Prince of the Dawn
- The Dragon
- The Promised One
- Champion of the Light
Lews Therin's character may show some similarities with Lucifer's. Like Lucifer, Lews Therin Telamon has fallen from grace. He was once known as "Lord of the Morning," like Lucifer, and was the strongest warrior on the Light's side. Lucifer was the serpent in the Garden of Eden and Lews Therin was the Dragon.
The name Telamon is found in a warrior-hero of Greek myth, the father of Ajax, as well as Atlas. Atlas was at times during his punishment known as Atlas Telamon, "enduring Atlas," which is fitting for Lews Therin, who was reborn as Rand, and even then was in Rand's mind for a while.
The epithet 'Kinslayer' is an allusion to Hercules, who was driven mad by the goddess Hera. During his insanity he slew his wife and all of his children.