Santharian Development

Santharian World Development => Magic in the Lands of Caelereth => Topic started by: Rayne (Alýr) on 08 May 2012, 15:35:07

Title: Raw Magic
Post by: Rayne (Alýr) on 08 May 2012, 15:35:07

Raw Magic (“Wild Magic”, “Pre-Magic”, “Nascent Magic”) is not so much a system of magic so much as an explanation, developed primarily by Ximaxian philosophers, of how magic is cast by those who have not studied it.

If fact, one might say Raw Magic is best defined by what it is not: it is not Ximaxian Magic, for it uses no philosophico-scientific system to explain the workings of the world and how to alter the discrete units (ounia and xeua) of things to change them; it is not Krean Magic, because it has insight into the role of time and chance; it is not clerical magic, because it does not pertain to the worship of gods and goddesses.

Rather, it is a system-less form of magic, one that does not also carry with it a cognitive, philosophical, religious, and/or metaphysical system for explaining itself and how it and the world works. It is a system that cannot be taught, because unlike other forms of magic that blossom from some explanatory seed, Raw Magic comes purely from desire’s influence. It is the magic of the Gifted, those individuals who have a natural inclination.

Raw Magic cannot be taught; instead, it is the magic of the Gifted, individuals with natural magical ability—and in fact, the term comes from the frequent collocation “raw magical ability” used when describing these individuals.

Because ‘raw magic’ is used only by the Gifted, it is extremely rare; however, because Gifted may be born anywhere, occasions of raw magic spell casting can be found throughout Caelereth.

Raw Magic is unique in that it has no worldview or underlying metaphysical system to explain it; in fact, this is its defining characteristic. While it serves as an explanation by Ximaxian philosophers and mages, it is not part of the Ximaxian system. The Ximaxian system is organized around four elemental schools that practice Elemental Magic (Wind, Water, Fire, and Earth) and two Archschools that practice Xeua and Ecua Magic.

While a Gifted casting Raw Magic may tend toward a certain element, like Water or Fire, they are not limited, per se, by that element in the same way a Ximaxian mage would be. A Gifted child’s Raw Magic may straddle schools: she may be able to melt ice (Fire) and then freeze it again (Water/Earth).

However, more importantly, a Gifted has no conception of ounia, xeua, or car’allia. He or she merely casts out of desire for a certain effect; casting is intuitive and instinctual rather than scientific and structured. There is no system to help aid in casting, or mediate the results.

Basic Principles
1. Raw Magic has no conceptual system. While other magic systems have a worldview at their heart. Raw Magic has none. Because of this, the system is impossible to teach. It represents a direct connection between desire and effect, without a cognitive or philosophical bridge to mediate.

2. Raw Magic cannot be taught. One must be born with a deep connection to the workings of the fabric of the Dream—a connection that is unmediated, unfiltered, and unconscious. Because of this, only the Gifted are capable of Raw Magic—and in fact, the concept of “Raw Magic” was developed to explain the way these individuals cast spells.

3. Raw Magic is often emotional. It is unconscious, having no cognitive system, and therefore exists somewhat apart from the conscious mind. It comes about most clearly through emotional response: a Gifted may become angry and set their house on fire, or tragically sorrowed and make it rain. Raw magic generally arises from deep emotion.

4. Raw Magic is powerful and chaotic. It is really only limited by the energies of the caster; spells may cross several different elements all at once and may be powerful enough to move clouds and make lightning strike. Its power derives from pure desire and will—and because the mind is excluded, it also lacks the mediator of judgment. It can therefore be rather chaotic and often extremely dangerous.

Abilities, Limitations, Restrictions, and Practice
Raw Magic has enormous potential to be very powerful and very chaotic. Because of its extraordinary rarity, it’s hard to tell exactly what is outside the bounds of those with the ability to wield it. However, to be certain, it is limited by the energies of the caster. Often, spells are cast with an outpouring of strong emotion that quickly drains the caster: therefore, spells, while they may be extremely powerful, are also brief, and frequently leave the caster exhausted, sometimes to the point of unconsciousness.

The period in which a Gifted can wield Raw Magic is also very brief. Ability with Raw Magic generally develops around age 10 or 11 in human Gifted, peaks around puberty, and then slowly tapers off into the early 20s. Many Gifted will retain some small ability, and may even experience another powerful occurrence, but spell casts are usually small and weak. (Women generally retain more powerful abilities in Raw Magic than men).

Many Ximaxian philosophers attribute this rise, peak, and taper to the development of emotions and the ability to keep those emotions in check. Adolescents have more Raw Magic ability because they experience powerful emotional responses to the natural dramas of life. As then grow into adulthood, they gain better judgment, better ability to assess risk, and more coping mechanisms—and sometimes a bit of apathy as well.



Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Athviaro Shyu-eck-Silfayr on 08 May 2012, 18:56:38
I know this is still a work in progress, but could a Gifted individual exhaust themself to the point of death - in other words, do really strong emotions pose a serious risk of draining the body's reserves beyond what is safe?

In curiosity,


Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Rayne (Alýr) on 08 May 2012, 22:45:48
Good question! Yes, I would say so.

The period of time that Gifted best cast Raw Magic is also the time when most individuals are at their most emotional and rebellious. Scientifically (outside of Santharia) this is the period where hormones are raging and the part of the brain that assesses risk is not fully developed, leading to high emotions and dangerous situations.

This is why Raw Magic is so dangerous: it's like giving guns to a distraught population.

Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Ryvic Darkveil on 09 May 2012, 01:12:40
It is a system that cannot be taught, because unlike other forms of magic that blossom from some explanatory seed, Raw Magic comes purely from desire’s influence. It is the magic of the Gifted, those individuals who have a natural inclination.

Would it be possible for a normal person to "become" Gifted from an emotional experience?

Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Artimidor Federkiel on 09 May 2012, 03:19:20
Well, if you're "gifted" you've got a gift given to you, a latent capability to be able to handle magic in a raw way, basically from birth I'd say. But "becoming gifted" isn't really possible. That the latent tendency becomes suddenly active due to a certain experience is possible, which doesn't mean however that the person all of a sudden turns into a mage, just that the gift becomes apparent...

Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Coren FrozenZephyr on 09 May 2012, 05:02:54
I love what you have so far Rayne! :grin: Great content. I just have a query regarding the terminology (which doesn't in any way affect the substance of what you have written): Based on my understanding of how the terms have been used to date, could I perhaps suggest that this entry describes "wild magic" rather than "raw magic"? If memory serves, when Talia began her re-organisation of magic project,* the term "wild magic" was collectively chosen to refer to the system-less, intuitive magic of the Gifted. From the way it was referenced in old entries, I had always understood "raw magic" to be a very specific way/method of casting magic: that of achieving a magical effect by manipulating the Form of a carall directly. So in a sense raw magic cuts across wild magic, clerical magic, Krean magic etc. To put it the other way around: the wild magic of the Gifted, Krean magic and/or clerical magic can sometimes amount to "raw magic" in that they sometimes seem to achieve effects by directly affecting the Form of the carall (although, of course, this isn't how they would describe what they are doing).

Keep up the great work! All the best  :hug:

*Accessing via a mobile device, so I'm afraid I cannot find the link.

Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Rayne (Alýr) on 09 May 2012, 10:13:31
Artimidor is right: you are either born one of the Gifted or not, but you cannot 'become' gifted.

Coren: I chose the term on purpose, actually. The notion of changing the form of car'all doesn't work for a few reasons:

1) It's employing Ximaxian Magical terminology, but doesn't exist in the Ximaxian Magical system. It's almost as though the ideas spinning around regarding Raw Magic were somehow displaced, unable to break free of the Ximaxian lens, and therefore rendered and incomplete magical system in and of itself.

2) the notions of changing "the form" of car'all don't necessarily ring true to me, because it takes a physical model and a physical basis for its philosophies, therefore leaving the spiritual dimension to languish a bit. Saying form defines or affects the content of car'all is trying to split something that, at its heart, is indivisible (not to mention the spiritual dimension being formless!). The properties expressed by ounia and through xeua determine form, but form determining ounia and xeua is causation moving backwards.

You can effect someone by musical, but you can't throw the music back at the instrument to change it. A candle throws beams of light, but you can't take the light and throw it to light a candle. After all, what we experience through interaction with something or someone is the music sung by singing strings of xeua, the light produced by the illuminated ounia. Without getting too much into post-modern philosophies, it's saying that the result comes before the cause, which doesn't seem quite right.

I am glad to see and hear from you, Coren!  :heart: I have missed you, though I'm sure you've been quite busy.

Title: Re: Raw Magic
Post by: Coren FrozenZephyr on 10 May 2012, 06:51:44
Hi Rayne - just managed to get a very cursory look at your reply. I'm a bit troubled by where this is headed. Could you give me some time to think it through? I'm drowning in work at the moment, but I will try to have a look at it over the weekend (unless I need to work).

My main worry is that, as far I understand it, the concept of "the Form of the Carall" (and raw magic as a form of magic Ximaxian cannot achieve as it manipulates this Form directly) has been there from the very start in Artimidor's founding entries, which itself harks back to Plato's Ideas. I am worried that what you are proposing (to the extent it relates to "raw magic" as opposed to "wild magic") actually would be a fundamental change to the way things currently stand (as I understand it). Let me have a think. I haven't looked at Santharian stuff for almost a year now, so I'll re-read the fundamentals again. :)

I'm sure collectively we can find a way to incorporate your ideas in a way that minimizes the knock-on effects on existing entries.  :hug:

Be well

PS: A passing thought: It just occurred to me that we might be saying the same thing, but might be confusing one another because we use conflicting terminology. Your use of 'form' in the post above is what I call/understand as 'structure' as opposed to 'Form/Idea' (with a capital F). Let me check what I wrote in those Ximaxian lectures a few years ago. I wonder if we could hammer out a quick list of agreed terminology as a priority/first step of the magic re-haul before we start working on individual entries? That would ensure we are all on the same page, speed up commenting on future entries and give us a handy list of defined terms we can use in these entries.