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Thread: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

  1. #1

    Default The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    The latest chapter (1018) introduced us to the concept of the Sun God Nika, which really got me thinking about One Piece's sun in a way I hadn't before. I've thought about the moon a lot. There's been a ton of obviously weird shit going on with the moon for a while now. The Oharan globe, the ancient city abandoned under its surface, the minks' lunar transformations. I was so sure the moon was a major symbol and mystery that I blinded myself to what Oda was really trying to set up. Because it's not just the moon that's a major component of this story, it's the sun too.



    Let's connect some dots, starting with the recent sun reveal and circling back to the moon as we go.

    Oda clues us into a great starting point in the latest chapter: Fishman Island. The island is supplied light by the roots of the Sunlight Tree Eve, inspiring a dream in the locals to live on the surface, under the real sun. The country's premiere pirate crew call themselves the Sun Pirates.



    Next step: the Sunlight Tree Eve is a sibling to the Jewel Tree Adam, whose wood was used to build the Thousand Sunny.

    We see evidence of different kinds of religious sun worship in ancient Shandia and modern Elbaf. Keep the Shandia example in mind for later.



    The kingdom of Alabasta, noteworthy for being one of the few surviving civilisations we can be fairly sure predates the World Government, uses an image of the sun for its flag. Dressrosa, another pre-World Government nation, has no known flag, but is strongly associated with sunflowers.



    Wano's Kozuki family crest has the Alabastan flag in the middle of it, and the symbol also appears on the old clothes Hitetsu had lying around.



    But Wano isn't only associated with the sun. The moon has been referenced repeatedly in this arc, from its use as imagery in Toki's prophecy to the Kozuki loyalists using a tattoo of a waning crescent as their identifying mark. All but one of the major families that ruled Wano in the past use the kanji meaning moon in their name.



    I think we can infer from the sun signs in Wano that there was some kind of cultural exchange between it and Alabasta in the ancient past, before Wano's borders closed. More evidence for this is Alabasta's Poneglyph - they keep it in such a secret and safe place as the royal family's tomb, as if they were entrusted to keep it secure for a long time by the people that made it.



    And as a precedent for this, we know the Mokomo Dukedom of Zou did have contact and cultural exchange with Wano in the ancient past and were entrusted to hold onto a Poneglyph, which they stored in a secret, safe place. Zou and the Minks can be strongly associated with the moon, given their Sulong transformations, but at the same time, they're waiting on an event they call the Dawn. This version seems more metaphorical than the true sun the fishmen seek, but the parallel is hard to miss. The minks’ sun/moon duality is also represented in their governance, which gives them a lord of the day and a lord of the night.



    Side note: Sulong can also be read as "moon lion" and Oda loves using lions to symbolise the sun - see Thousand Sunny, young Nami's sunflower/lion shirt and Luffy's bone lion coat. Incidentally, Shanks's new Vivre card apparently says his spirit animal is a lion, so take from that what you will.



    Just like Alabasta and Zou, we see Fishman Island has Poneglyphs. They're not guarded as jealously as the latter two, but the Sea Forest where they were kept is an important enough site that they buried their queen there, so it matches the pattern of the stones being put somewhere of high importance.



    And circling back to Shandia, we have a people that consider themselves protectors Shandora and the Poneglyph worked into the base of the sacred golden bell in the heart of the city. Once again, a pattern of sun associations and a Poneglyph being put in a sacred spot and guarded. Furthermore, Shadora is a city of gold. The Shandians don't seem to be dedicated miners or put any real value on gold, nor do they claim their ancestors were the ones that built the city - they only protect it. Wano was once known as a Country of Gold, so could they have supplied the material that Shandora was made of?



    But the final note to connect here is that the Shandians, among other races, seemingly lived on the moon at one point. We don't know if they originated there, or simply colonised it at one point and then departed back to earth, or if the moon was settled by an offshoot group who eventually died out, but they left a lot of highly advanced technology behind. And how interesting that they worship the sun, despite this part of their history.

    The moon murals were also our best source of info on the Ancient Weapons for a long time. This tracks with the Poneglyphs on earth being the last remaining record of where the weapons are and what they do. So whoever lived on the moon was also connected to the Wano and its Poneglyph-smithing skills.

    Interestingly, none of the winged races who may have descended from the moon have anything close to the same technology today. From the state of Shandian medical science 300 years ago, whatever happened to these peoples may have knocked them all the way back to the stone age.



    And does the Will of the D play into this at all? A pictogram of a half moon is a popular theory for its meaning. But so is the Dawn the minks are waiting for, or a pictogram of a grinning mouth (with the Sun God being characterised as a bringer of laughter). So there’s good odds of it going either way.

    (That said, the people of the D are said to be "natural enemies of the gods" and aside from the Celestial Dragons, the formerly-moon dwelling people of Skypiea and Birka are the only cultures that come to mind that characterise their mortal rulers as gods.)

    Finally, what of people who can't sleep, like Blackbeard? I think this works as a moon association, given the way Oda first hinted at it (and the natural mental connection to pulling an all-nighter). This actually makes an interesting contradiction for all the sun and moon interplay we've looked at so far. Blackbeard is seemingly inheriting the will of Rocks, who attacked the Celestial Dragons' slaves in such a way that Roger felt the need to step in and defend them, presumably so they could live on to be freed by Nika. If his successor, Blackbeard, carries a moon association, did Rocks have a lunar focus too, and was he trying to act in opposition to the Sun God's will? Or was he trying to be the Sun God, but had to be stopped because it was too soon for that?



    It's tempting to characterise the sun and the moon as opposites in a way that would make them enemies, or equal but separate balancing forces, but that's not what we're seeing here. If, in the ancient past, there were two groups of people who identified themselves by the sun and the moon, they were allies, not foes. If there's a sign of the sun, you generally don't have to look very far to find a connection to the moon as well. Wanoese stonesmiths created the Poneglyphs and entrusted them both to nations that favour the sun in their heraldry and nations that draw power from the moon, or even lived there. The final battle is not going to come down to sun nations vs moon nations - in fact it may be more about reuniting the people who remember one or the other.

    This thread should remain a good place to bring up any other examples of sun or moon symbols and associations I missed or forgot about, and to track new ones that appear in the future. Feel free to keep pushing the theory/conspiracy train forward from these newly connected datapoints.

  2. #2
    Arf. (ᵔᴥᵔ) FelRes's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Yeah, I'm happy this Nika stuff caused the sun to be brought to light. It was always symbolic, but this new chapter cements it as more significant to the lore than most of us probably thought. I'm seeing people connect Sun God Nika to Joyboy as well, connecting him to a like-named Caribbean folklore figure who represents song and dance and all that. Pretty fitting for Luffy, so I can see connections there. Not sure how accurate it is though or if it's been mentioned much here. I also think Nika's silhouette kinda resembles a wingless Shandian, though that might just be coincidence.

    And for what it's worth, the Celestial Dragons' general design always stood out to me as resembling astronauts. Plus their design is inspired by some moon guys from that Baron Munchausen movie that Oda also took Van Auger's design from (plus some other little things). Probably just an aesthetic choice though.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Quote Originally Posted by FelRes View Post
    Yeah, I'm happy this Nika stuff caused the sun to be brought to light. It was always symbolic, but this new chapter cements it as more significant to the lore than most of us probably thought. I'm seeing people connect Sun God Nika to Joyboy as well, connecting him to a like-named Caribbean folklore figure who represents song and dance and all that. Pretty fitting for Luffy, so I can see connections there. Not sure how accurate it is though or if it's been mentioned much here. I also think Nika's silhouette kinda resembles a wingless Shandian, though that might just be coincidence.

    And for what it's worth, the Celestial Dragons' general design always stood out to me as resembling astronauts. Plus their design is inspired by some moon guys from that Baron Munchausen movie that Oda also took Van Auger's design from (plus some other little things). Probably just an aesthetic choice though.
    The Celestial Dragons' astronaut suits is a great addition, and probably the first real thing that makes it look like the moon side might actually be bad guys. I was more in the mindset of looking for objective symbols of this and that when I was writing the post, so I didn't do a lot of speculating on who Nika was or what culture. Shandia feels like a good guess though, especially with Luffy's dancing silhouette in the party scenes looking a lot like the Sun God visual from this chapter, and the long-speculated on volume 27 cover with the wings and the winking.

    Mostly I'll leave the real world/mythology connections like King Jayabaya/Joyoboyo, the Caribbean Joyboy figure and the handful of old gods with names comparable to Nika to people better read in those fields, but it's all good to note. Although, one thing I don't see mentioned a lot is Nippon essentially making our Japan's name "sunrise land," which plays into Sun God and Dawn symbolism when we're thinking of Wano as One Piece's Japan.

  4. #4

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    As Pedro said in WCI the world currently is in a very long night, waiting for its dawn. Similarly to how Oda had Corazon drop that the D are "God's natural enemy" which already was reflected in Luffy's position to Enel in Skypia, we can see this concept already realized in both Skypia and Thriller Bark. In Skypia Luffy destroys Enel's big thundercloud, proclaiming the sun shall shine. And in Thriller Bark by defeating Moria everyone who had his shadow stolen was able to live under the sun again.

    On the other hand, Blackbeard with his Darkness Darkness Fruit is able to absorb the sun' s light, with Ace's final attack against him - a sun-like fireball - failing. This really cements Blackbeard as one of the final obstacles to bringing the world's dawn.


  5. #5

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainAppleJack View Post
    As Pedro said in WCI the world currently is in a very long night, waiting for its dawn. Similarly to how Oda had Corazon drop that the D are "God's natural enemy" which already was reflected in Luffy's position to Enel in Skypia, we can see this concept already realized in both Skypia and Thriller Bark. In Skypia Luffy destroys Enel's big thundercloud, proclaiming the sun shall shine. And in Thriller Bark by defeating Moria everyone who had his shadow stolen was able to live under the sun again.

    On the other hand, Blackbeard with his Darkness Darkness Fruit is able to absorb the sun' s light, with Ace's final attack against him - a sun-like fireball - failing. This really cements Blackbeard as one of the final obstacles to bringing the world's dawn.
    Ooh, the Ace and Blackbeard bit is a good connection. I might have to soften on my moon ≠ bad line of thinking, because that's a powerful metaphor if Oda intended it.

  6. #6

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    I would add some chapter titles I gathered.

    28-Crescent Moon
    107-Moonlight and Gravestones
    152-Full Moon
    289-Full Moon
    292-Meeting a broken Moon thru the clouds


    Chapters 152 and 289, are partially written differently; 満月 and 望月respectively, whatever explanation there is for that..

    And I only found two chapters referencing the Sun;

    623-Sun Pirates
    648-Path towards the Sun

  7. #7

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    I don't have anything specific to say in response to the points brought up, but I really enjoyed reading this post and all the information you've gathered and put together. I normally don't read long theory posts, but I made an exception for this one because the title of the thread caught my attention and I'm glad I did.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Quote Originally Posted by Monquito View Post
    I would add some chapter titles I gathered.

    28-Crescent Moon
    107-Moonlight and Gravestones
    152-Full Moon
    289-Full Moon
    292-Meeting a broken Moon thru the clouds


    Chapters 152 and 289, are partially written differently; 満月 and 望月respectively, whatever explanation there is for that..

    And I only found two chapters referencing the Sun;

    623-Sun Pirates
    648-Path towards the Sun
    Good find. I'd also be interested to see what the difference between the two full moon chapters is.

    Of the lot so far, "path towards the sun" sounds like the most relevant. From what I recall of where the moon ones are most of them reference an appearance of the literal moon in the chapter, rather than any subtle bigger-picture symbolism.

    Quote Originally Posted by Medical Orbit View Post
    I don't have anything specific to say in response to the points brought up, but I really enjoyed reading this post and all the information you've gathered and put together. I normally don't read long theory posts, but I made an exception for this one because the title of the thread caught my attention and I'm glad I did.
    Thanks! Glad you enjoyed the read! Feel free to add any observations you come up with or draw your own conclusions. I'm not even entirely sure what my theory here is - just that all these things exist and have got to be connected somehow.

  9. #9

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Just saw this Twitter post that shows Luffy's straw hat resembles a little something we could consider the dawn. That's a possible connection I actively never saw until this point.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    And, of course, there is also the proto-One Piece story: Romance Dawn.

  11. #11

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainAppleJack View Post
    Just saw this Twitter post that shows Luffy's straw hat resembles a little something we could consider the dawn. That's a possible connection I actively never saw until this point.
    That is absolutely insane in if it really is intentional and planned.

    Quote Originally Posted by Piitan View Post
    And, of course, there is also the proto-One Piece story: Romance Dawn.
    Not just the prototype, the title of the first chapter. From the very start, Oda's wanted the Dawn to mean something. Crazy that it's taken more than 24 years to start really knowing what.

  12. #12

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Really interesting post to connect the dots. Also, first chapter after the timeskip (598?) was Romance Dawn for the New World, which could be intended as even more specific.
    In Enies Lobby is always day, night never comes, right? Or was it just a name for the place which I took literally?

  13. #13

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Quote Originally Posted by IORI_17 View Post
    Really interesting post to connect the dots. Also, first chapter after the timeskip (598?) was Romance Dawn for the New World, which could be intended as even more specific.
    In Enies Lobby is always day, night never comes, right? Or was it just a name for the place which I took literally?
    No yeah, there's something up with the light over Enies Lobby. I always liked the theory that it was Kizaru or a previous user of his fruit going all out and causing a permanent change to the environment, like Aokiji and Akainu were able to do to Punk Hazard, but now we probably shouldn't rule out ancient sun god weirdness as an option.

  14. #14
    Arf. (ᵔᴥᵔ) FelRes's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Oh. Duh. Luffy's from Dawn Island.
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  15. #15

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    At some point I'll edit the op to add the interesting ideas other people have come up with, but here's another angle - we know Binks's Sake has a possible reference to Laugh Tale in the final line, but it also mentions the sun twice and the moon once.



    I wonder exactly how differently we'll look back on these lyrics after we know the full story...

  16. #16

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Adding to everything else here, we're just learned about the Lunarians - a near-extinct race of winged, fire-manipulating people. Their name obviously indicates a connection to the moon and lines up with the murals of other winged races found there.



    But the fire manipulation is an interesting point, because we've seen a lot of characters spontaneously make fire without any immediately evident devil fruit or technological assistance. Could some or all of these characters have some kind of Lunarian heritage? How did the race manage to end up seemingly extinct, but also so widely spread that their genes randomly pop up all around the world?



    There are some fringe cases here of course. Katakuri and Opera being able to make hot or cold versions of their food as an advanced devil fruit skill would make sense, and Basskarte could be hiding any kind of weapon under those sleeves, but the rest are not as easily explained. There are also some fringe cases I chose not to include - Doflamingo's overheat move feels like it has some out of nowhere heat generation, but it never produced actual flames. By a similar measure, Zoro has picked up the ability to cut fire from Kin'emon, but has not yet been shown to make any.

    Finally, I want to note that when Oda wants to have a practical explanation, he's got no problem drawing a little hidden flamethrower, showing the character igniting with a match, or referencing the technology in an attack name:



    That makes the choice not to explain the above examples all the more noteworthy for the future.

  17. #17

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    I'm feeling considerably confident that since the Lunarian lived in where is now Mary Geoise, Sun God Nika likely lived in the exact opposite side of the RedLine/the World. living right in the top of the Reverse Mountain.

    Which would push me into specullating that "Reverse Mountain" is not the original name of the place, and the 5 rivers that cross it, came to existence after it was blasted by a great power.

    ______________________________________

    @CaptianM Redon notes that the wording is quite specific in Sanji's case, he can make fire at will out of his human body.

    Most of the cases in those pictures(which I do appreciate your hardwork), aren't coming out of people's bodies, Luffy doesn't make it at will and he's not completly human either(rubber nature), and as for others like that Fire head Charlotte I don't know the name of, we simply don't have an explanation.

    Point is, this one last chapter, strongly implies Sanji does have Lunarian dna on him.
    Last edited by Monquito; August 29th, 2021 at 05:57 PM.

  18. #18

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Both excellent points, Monquito. I like the idea of playing Reverse Mountain and Marie Geoise in opposition to each other like that. I wonder if the Redline/Redwall wording contradiction could play into it there once being a separate destination up there.

    I hadn't seen Redon's comment, so that's a pretty unfortunate torpedo to a fun line of thinking, but good to know. I would argue that Luffy at least still counts. There's nothing in his devil fruit that really justifies fire, the way he summons it feels pretty at-will, even if it's only for specific attacks, and it would play into the (kinda tinfoil-y but still worth remembering) theories about volume 27's cover with the wings behind him, plus Greg was happy enough to count him alongside Sanji over in his thread.

  19. #19

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain M View Post
    How did the race manage to end up seemingly extinct, but also so widely spread that their genes randomly pop up all around the world?
    Perhaps largescale crossbreeding with other races, to the point that King is one, if not not the last, specimen of a pureblood Lunarian to be found? I'm willing to bet a good chunk of One Piece Earth's population would be pretty shocked by what say a DNA test would reveal about their ancestry.

  20. #20

    Default Re: The sun, the moon and the things that connect them

    So I'm a bit confused on the tie-ins from last chapter to this.

    When Marco talks directly to King about the race that can create fire, I assume this to be the same as the Lunarians that Queen refers to. So is King being hinted as also being Lunarian here? There's also a not-so-subtle hint of King giving a reaction when Queen mentions this.

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