I have braced myself for the angry responses from fellow wikians who have accepted this theory and will call me dense, stupid, or close minded for even questioning it and will try their best to prove me wrong, but since I am a madman, I go against the norm, and this theory seems pretty prominent. So why not do something heretical and speak out against it? Remember though, any and all theories expressed here are the writer's opinion only and it is only speculation. Feel free to believe what you like.
Before I begin to refute, what is CHIM? The basic definition is having a sort of epiphany that allows you to realize you place in the universe, what the universe is about, and can alter reality to do fantastic things. The word CHIM comes up in the Mythic Dawn Commentaries, particularly book 3, and It begins with "The Tower touches all the mantles of Heaven [...] and by its apex one can be as he will. More: be as he was and yet changed for all else on that path for those that walk after. This is [...] the secret of how mortals become makers [CHIM], and makers back to mortals." So one who knows CHIM is said to reside atop (or within) the Tower (i.e., Mundus) and possesses incomprehensible power to alter reality. One with an understanding of CHIM also understands the Godhead, another popular theory around here, and can escape all restricitions of reality. The beginning of one of the black books: Waking Dreams, seems to discuss it at some length. According to the teachings of Vivec, a mortal made god, and back to a mortal again, he said that Lorkhan was the first to understand this, and used this power to create Nirn. (I know some may not have heard of that bit, but go to the website of Awkwardly Falling, or is it Falling Awkwardly? And you can read the entire reasoning for CHIM on the Metaphysics of Morrowind articles. Plus it also said, though this one is less credible, on the Unofficial Elder Scrolls that Lorkhan used CHIM, because this website has no page for CHIM) Others attributed to this power were Tiber Septim, who mantled Lorkhan with CHIM and became Talos, using this power after conquering Tamriel to warp the endless jungle that was Cyrodil into a temperate forest land. This, along with some of Michael Kirkbride's little writings, who some on here worship as divine word and won't here a word against it, for good reason mind you. However, for some this is irrefutable proof.
Incredible. Most incredible. Certaintly not the strangest theory I have seen around. Quite credible, and quite believable. In fact, it's one of the better theories out there. And Kirkbride himself, writer for some of the lore in the Elder Scrolls, supports it.
...So why do I still not buy a word of it? It makes sense, does it not? Well, it does, but not to me in the way everyone else feels. I am sure plenty of you have heard of an Easter Egg. That you find in games. Fun little references to things, nice little puzzles or rewards, or sometimes important information that may come up in a future game. In the case of Vivec, he teaches CHIM and seems to have a sense of it, though I doubt he fully achieved it, otherwise, according to the theory, he could do anything he wanted, like defeat Dagoth Ur with the blink of an eye. Perhaps he did, I do not know, but rest assured, his ramblings have caught the eyes of many Lore Enthusiasts, which in his passages the characters do things and exhibit behavior similar to that of a player in the game, like pausing games or reloading your last save because you died. According to the "Metaphysics of Morrowind" on Falling Awkwardly, Vivex knows he is a video game character, knows he is imaginary, but instead of simply vanishing in a "puff of logic," he takes control of this imaginary stuff and uses it to do wonderous things. Reality becomes Imagination, and Imagination becomes reality, and Vivec know this. It all makes sense doesn't it? At the same time, none at all, just like the Elder Scrolls. Interesting comparison. If CHIM is real, maybe the two have a connection? Something to be explored in later theory blogs.
Anyway, what was I saying? Easter Eggs? Oh yeah...True, Vivec, some books in Tamriel, and some coincidences give rise to the idea that Vivec knows he is a video game character, though he words in the old medeival way in true Elder Scrolls Fashion. Michael Kirkbride supports the theory. But, and I know some people will hate me for saying this, but I don't think CHIM has anything to do with the "Answer to it All." Think like Deadpool. He know he is a comic book. It IS a comic book. Vivec knows he is in a video game. It IS a video game. There right, right? Wrong. Breaking the fourth wall is usually meant as a joke. Making a fourth wall reference does not dictate that the canon is that the world they're in is a fake, even if it is. Within their world, it's real. There is nothing outside of it. You can have multiverses, but they all are apart of the same thing. Think of it this way. Just because it's fake doesn't mean it IS fake. To them it's not. It's as real as us. Because one guy, Vivec, broke the fourth wall, though he doesn't outright say it, does'nt mean that "It's all a video game, that's the answer." Do you get what I'm saying? I think its a fourth wall joke. When you make CHIM the answer to everything, for example, How was Nirn made? CHIM. How was Mundus made? CHIM. How did Lorkhan make it? CHIM. How did the Divines help? CHIM. How did Talos conquer Tamriel? CHIM. How does a player pause his game? CHIM. Sure, it gets a little more serious then a joke. But...am I the only one finding the CHIM theory to be, not only redundant, but not at all interesting?
Let me explain before Kirkbride followers pee your pants.
When the idea that CHIM existed was first introduced, people went nuts. People flocked to Imperial Library to read more of this amazing stuff. We got Towers, the Godhead, all this lore. It was a challenge to understand, and that's what made it fun. But let's sit here and critically think about it.
CHIM, answer to everything. This theory, which was a challenging one to understand, gave rise to the belief that the Elder Scroll were not just some cookie cutter fantasy world. It wanted to challenge the audience with something that made them think, and for the most part, it succeeds. That's what CHIM is to me. But with it's greatest strength it is also its greatest flaw. Proclaiming that CHIM is the answer to it all robs the lore of that feeling of exploration and research. I am sure researching CHIM provided many hours of enjoyment for some, but when it comes to the grit of it, CHIM is saying it is the key to everything. Elder scrolls? CHIM? Talos? CHIM. Greymarch? CHIM. Lorkhan? CHIM. The Divines? CHIM.
CHIM wanted to say that this was not just a run-of-the-mill fantasy yes? Then why does it give us this simple fourth grade answer to it all? There is no passion in it, no creativity, just some random hick saying "CHIM DUN DID IT!" Apology for those who support CHIM. You all provide excellent arguments, but for me, CHIM contradicts itself. It's creativeness robs it of its creativeness. I want a lore filled with variations of myths, legends, stories, grand mystery, and for the most part, it still is, because I choose to disbelieve this theory, for creativities sake. It's stale. It makes excellent use of in game writings and lore, but it is just to simple to fly with me. There has to be more to it than that. There has to be more to than four simple letters. What would be the point of the Divines? The Elder Scrolls? For me, CHIM is Kirkbride disregarding everything he had said up to that point. Some may wonder why I dislike Kirkbride so much? I don't dislike him, I just don't agree with him, even if he is the creator of the stuff. But as Vivec will tell you, simply because something is made to be true by the highest of beings, in this case, a developer for the game, does not mean it is true. We are free to make it out to what we want. And this is what I want it to be. Different. If Kirkbride said Oblivion never happened, would you believe him?
For that matter, what if he told you himself CHIM never existed? How would you react? As explained by Falling Awkward, a character can start out your own, but it can grow out of your control, taking on a life of its own. I think the Elder Scrolls has gone to far to simply toss aside all that it has built up now just for one theory. This is no longer Michaels world he can toy with, toy with us. Some can choose to follow him, taking every word as seriously as though God said it himself, or you can be more interesting, and defy it, warping the reality, using non CHIM for yourself, to make the game whatever you want it to be. Why do I say you can use CHIM now? Because Vivec and Kirkbride were wrong. CHIM does not belong to the game. CHIM belongs to us. CHIM can be a fourth wall joke, it can be your reality. And that, is why I think CHIM is one of the most ridiculous and beautiful theories there is in the Elder Scrolls. Don't take this as "I don't like it, so it must not exist." It's more along the lines of "I don't like it. Who knows what could be true in this universe?"
Stay Mad everyone. Ta-ta.