Edo Tensei Retrospective
edo tensei, created by tobirama, developed and perfected through it's applications by orochimaru and kabuto. the technique that violates the dead and disturbs the living at unconscionable cost.
so, why would a senju hokage create such a foul jutsu that, in the end, was judged immoral and ultimately instill a feeling of regret for its creation?
619 opens it wide open for discussion. orochimaru points out that tobirama's jutsus (contextually, orochimaru means primarily edo tensei but certainly not limited to just that jutsu alone) as well as the skewed applications of ethics and policy onto uchiha caused considerable harm to their clan society as well as spoiling political climates. tobirama openly admitted his treatment was skewed BUT he follows with a defense which is hard to argue against and gives both orochimaru and hashirama reason for pause... MADARA!
"you don't know madara"... "after what madara pulled!"... "madara sympathizers remained"..
let's plug in some more details from the manga prior to this chapter, 619.
1) madara knows the edo tensei contract seal.
2) madara cared deeply for izuna
3) izuna died before madara
4) edo tensei wad introduced in the story as first and foremost, a prelude bargain to return dead loved ones to life that tsunade had lost.
5) tobirama, in transative, is weaker than madara, unable to use mokuton, was alive in the era of opportunity to fight madara.
taking all of that into consideration, one thing is clear... edo tensei was created to handle events having to do with madara!
so, was it used as a means to combat madara in a battle? was it used to bring izuna back to life and appease madara? did madara lose izuna because izuna was the sacrifice in the tobirama's edo tensei? did madara spy, genjutsu, or somehow steal the jutsu from tobirama to bring izuna back himself? did tobirama invent edo tensei to teach madara how to bring izuna back to life? did tobirama create edo tensei for all uchiha as a political bargaining chip during konaha's restructuring and relocation of the uchihas and hoped it would give any uchiha the means to keep loved ones in their world, thus preventing the sharingan from widespread development otherwise caused by severe anguish (imagine the entire uchiha clan during a war! all emos!)??
imo, i think madara learned edo tensei by copying it with sharingan while tobirama used it to bring izuna back from the dead as a means to solve a grave and severe combat situation. after all, tobirama stressed the consequences and transformation that occurs when uchihas lose love and spoke of it in a manner suggesting tobirama had to deal with it at its worst as well as claiming to have seen it many times from the uchiha as a whole.
the whole idea of madara having sympathizers attached to anti-senju/village sentiments means an injustice occurred, izuna died as an injustice madara held konaha responsible for. madara is the reason tobirama created edo tensei, "wiping the slate clean" is open to interpretation.
How did the 2nd die again? It may contradict your theory.
it is believed he died when 20 pursuers tracked him and his subordinates. tobirama said that based on their tracking methods that they were bountyhunters from hidden cloud. he asked who would stay as a lone decoy so the rest could escape. a young sarutobi volunteered first, was selected to be thurd hokage because of that and tobirama instead himself remained as the lone decoy so the younger ones could escape. this was danzous flashback during his final uses of izanagi against sasuke. it's worth mentioning that an uchiha was among the group tobirama saved. also, much confusion surrounded tobirama's death because it was assumed that it was kin gin brothers that attacked during danzo's flashback and thus tobitsma did not die. that is false. the kin gin attack was a separate incident as it involved the second raikage and full awareness if cloud presence, not unknown pursuers as danzo's flashback depicts; second raikage had nothing to do with danzo's flashback and there is no reason to believe tobirama remained hokage after appointing sarutobi. furthermore, tsunade and jaraya recounted how danzo was fighting sarutobi for position as hokage, something likely not to happen if tobirama had lived past the flashback incident, as his decision would be solid and binding without giving danzo footing to challenge.
Originally Posted by Arbitrary
if you accept tobirama's death as the danzo flashback incident then you have an ambiguous while after hashirama died and madara "died" unless tobirama secretly knew madara lived or that hashirama let madara go.
what was the contradiction you had in mind?
i just think that since edo tensei was introduced as a tool to restore lost love and that tobirama, as the creator of that tool gave so much weight and focus on madara and uchiha losing love as part of his argument that it's more solud than theory level discusdion yet not quite as stable as a concrete fact.
tidbit - when oro attacked the leaf and summoned hashirama and tobirama, sarutobi did not acknowledge or recognize the edo tensei as a tobirama jutsu but instead a sick forbidden jutsu somehow concocted by oro. sarutobi, as tobirama's pupil, would have reacted differently and known the jutsu if it was created by his sensei for even forbidden use other than a secret means to bargain or combat madara.
epic tidbit - another part of edo tensei that is most interesting is that when many of those who were revived met their loved ones who were living, had a resolution to any lingering issue or reaffirmed the bonds they had while living, the edo tensei would release them no matter what precautions the caster took! at first the it was hard to understand why but after this chapter, how can you argue that edo tensei, by design, was anything but a means to restore and revisit a loved one. we see villains apply the jutsu as a combat measure but then grow bewildered as their subjects disappear once their love is realized or reaffirmed. that is because those villains misunderstood edo
tensei's true purpose and that the unintended releases at moments of love were actually a calculated and designed
feature in tobirama's version. this also means it wasn't as sinister as we first thought and the sacrifice of life we are told is necessary may have played out differently when tobitama used it and though of good intention, became immoral after the fact as decay of tobirama being pragmatic. edo tensei also seems to be useful as a "severe" inductive teaching tool that your loved ones remain in your heart and not as zombies! because the edo tensei ends at the moment that love is reaffirmed then it is mechanically operating to demonstrate EXACTLY what naruto learned and then acted upon at neji's death! edo tensei is a misguided attempt to teach that point
Seeing as the Silver and Gold brother were the ones that inflicted on him mortal wounds, seems that he eventually died because of them (he seems to have made back to Konoha, but eventually died because of his injuries from them, he might have lived this long thanks to his Senju heritage) and that he was ok, before playing the decoy, it does seem that they and their special pursuit/assassin squad was what lead him to his death... but then, how did the Silver and Gold brother died, which seemingly should live long lives by inheriting similar traits to Uzumaki from their ancestor So6p... Assuming that they were returning from the failed peace treat with Cloud, but if the peace treat was later, then he in fact died later than the decoy play from Danzou's flashback. The only chance at defeating the brothers, that Tobirama had, was ET, so perhaps he did in fact summon someone powerful like Izuna...
At first, I thought that using Hashirama's life creating power (something like Zetsus) and Tobirama's ET, would allow to reunite families, friends, or even (eventually) annihilate death from the Naruto world. I theorized that perhaps that was the real objective in creating ET, but seeing now how Tobirama acts, his personality and that he isn't all friends and peace loving Senju stereotype (it seems that only Hashirama was like that), it seems that Madara's words are true, that this jutsu is nothing more than a map-cleaner...
BTW, isn't this like the fifth similar thread about Edo Tensei ? Or were they lost to the series of hacks (to this day I sometimes notice that some old threads are missing) ?
see my edit in bold. when tobirama died isn't important because while living longer may open up more possibilities as to why he created edo tensei, it does nothing to contradict this thread idea.
Originally Posted by Zero
sorry if this is the fifth thread. i would be happy and thankful if merged appropriately with the others by a mod/admin.
i don't want to have too much discussion about when tobirama died and what details of danzo's flashback match with raikage's kin gin lesson as it should have minimal impact either way when discussing edo tensei. madara knowing the contract seal for release is a far stronger detail for discussion than anything involving a timeline with kin gin.
We actually get a little information about the Edo Tensei jutsu from Madara: http://www.mangapanda.com/naruto/561/2 . If I had to guess, the jutsu might have been developed during the wars before the founding of the Leaf Village. After all, those were more desperate and unsure times. And since the Uchiha and Senju fought so often, that would explain how Madara could have learned the seals, since Tobirama's attitude regarding Madara clearly demonstrates that he wouldn't have willingly taught the technique to Madara.
i believe that is madara misunderstanding the purpose of edo tensei, just as oro and kabuto did. madara had sealed off his "strong feelings" at that point and would be blind to what it teaches. compare edo tensei's behavior proven by its practice to izanami's behavior. izanami would not end until the chosen destiny that unlocks the genjutsu is accepted. the summoned edo tensei does not return to the pure world until its bond or love is affirmed but a powerful jutsu, such as sealing, can supercede the mechanics of izanami or edo tensei.
Originally Posted by Temperjoke
just as we learn now the twist that uchiha's valued love above even the levels of senju, then so too can edo tensei be corrected in how its understood as a "wipe the slate clean" combat tech into a well intenioned yet gone awry method of trying to repair broken bonds and show what naruto saw in neji's death.
it's obvious madara would not recognize such a purpose after having gone so deep and entrenched in darkness. his say on the matter would be way off. compare sarutobi's feelings and intentions when he fought oro and how oro would recognize that as a futility and miss it for what it was. madara would be similar, not seeing edo tensei for what it was.
Well the technique is called Impure World Resurrection, seeing as Tobirama was the one who created and named it, it does imply that he consider the world he lived in as an Impure, while the one that the souls go to as Pure. It is not know what exactly he means by calling them like that. It's possible that he considers the living world as detestable, while the other one as better, clean and pure. It's also possible that the Pure world is called that, because it's completely spiritual world only, while the world of the living, the Impure one, is the one that hosts both physical matter/life as well as souls.
Tobirama himself doesn't seem like a pure good person and he indeed used ET as an map cleaner, which Madara mentions (he had to see the jutsu in action for that statement). It's more probably, just as Temperjoke mentioned, that Madara have simply copied the seals that Tobirama once used, or perhaps Tobirama have taught those seals to ones stronger than him, in case if they were forced to be used against leaf after their death.
Tobirama seems like a person who has no regard for the dead and would simply use anything, even the dead, to protect Konoha, since it's all he really cares about. It's even possible that he created the jutsu to initially kill all Uchiha and have them later on at his disposal as perfect puppets, protecting order in Konoha and doing special missions for him. He is not the savior type and thus it wouldn't fit his character to create a jutsu other than one that can be used as means to protect Konoha. He detests the Uchiha too much to help them in anyway.
^ Your last point was exactly my thought on why I asked about the nature of his death.
He could not have died using the jutsu to help Madara, he would not want to help him in the first place.
Why are you assuming that? i never implied at all that tobirama sacrificed himself for et and if i did i offered plenty of scenario where he most certainly would not have sacrificed himself... his sacrifice was the danzo flashback and if he in fact used et in that event it is still completely irrelevant to discussing why he made et in the first place. besides, helping madara is an oversimplification and why i did not limit things to that but consider that ruled out and?..
Originally Posted by Arbitrary
i think you are placing too much emphasis on tobirama's underdeveloped character. to me he strikes me as being on the "get dirty for the greater good" end of pragmatic leadership. he admits he was skewed in his decision making because of madara and the dangers of sympathy for that cause presents. telling of seeing too often the uchiha curse of their feelings only while admitting it comes from love greater than his own clan is known for shows he isn't a simple bigot but was like a less evil danzo because tobirama still valued emotions or at least wasn't hostile to emotions. also, an uchiha was part of the group he saved in danzo's flashback. danzo seems to have inherited tobirama's flaws and amplified them to perversion while sarutobi inherited the conventional will of fire. tobirama as of now is complex, someone who could foster both the good in sarutobi yet the harshness in in danzo. moral judgement of tobirama is tricky because the murkiness is mainly to do with uchiha problems and prejudices but it's unfairly assumed he had little or no regard for life or other things. almost giving him villain qualities but danzo's flashback does as much to disprove that as much as it cultivates the uncertainty.
given hashirama's attitude during the discussion at hand paints edo tensei as something of an uneasy and indeterminable jutsu. something to be labeled immoral only after its application by others for evil means. also, you keep ignoring the obvious contextual framework of returning loved ones to life et was pinned to since the beginning as orochimaru's bargain with tsunade and how can you ignore that tobirama spent all his talking time saying that the biggest problem he had with the uchiha was what they resulted in after losing love! are you going to ignore tobirama's own story of why he treated the uchiha the way he did was because they lose loved ones? the fact that tobirama and hashirama just drove home the point that losing izuna was the heart of the matter that ultimately pushed madara into the derpest darkness and strongest sharingan? it couldn't be more in your face tjat the "curse" of uchiha is a severed bond and losing who they so strongly love and tobirama plainly says that is reason for all the trouble. in face of that are you going to ignore the horse's mouth and go with madara on this one or see orichimaru and kabuto as the authoritive users? those three all have been lost or incapable of the point, anything they say will be even more skewed than tobirama. again, kabuto's et showed a good many edo shonobi released from the jutsu after the affirmation of their bonds. when you consider that while also remembering that tobirama himself, creator of et, spent a good chunk of a chapter explaining the biggest struggle he had with the uchiha was how they behave when they lose those they love... madara, who shocked us when he demonstrated he knew edo tensei's release... first off, f*** kin gin! that should have nothing to do with anything, it's so irrelevant at this point. you can connect the dots or not but if you want to say tobirama invented edo tensei to win a battle because madara must know what he is talking about and asuma and deidara dissipated because of unintended flukes then be my guest to ignore the obvious. maybe i am wrong and talking out my ass but the creator of edo tensei and his brother weren't able to make up their mind about the morality of the jutsu until they saw its misuse by others. it shows it was a jutsu used on uncertain ground, not used by a person who is a sure tyrant or comfortable bigot without values.
ahhh well. im reflecting on all the shinobi that kabuto used in edo tensei and it's very curious those who reacted and knew of edo tensei. mainly chio.. who of tobirama's era, also had a technique which exchanged one life for another. really gets you thinking about what they were possibly trying to acheive at the same time and which jutsu influenced the other more. chio's reaction gives far more credible reason to shape understanding et than madara's "understanding", who btw, only recognizes worth within a very narrow notion of power!!!