THE MIRROR PRINCIPLE
A change in the aura affects a change - which can be physical, spiritual or both - in the object/being. Therefore, by altering a Cár'áll, a mage can bring about a change in the actual entity represented by that Cár'áll. According to the Academy of Ximax, this “Mirror Principle” is the basis of all magic.
MAGIC AS OPPOSITION
To reiterate: The Form decrees how things are supposed to be. This is why all magic is essentially an act of opposition - against the natural will of things, against the natural state of their Cár'áll, and indeed against ‘the’ Natural Will. So when a mage casts a spell, he tries to put his will over the natural will of a Cár'áll. Recall the old adage that a mage first becomes Elemental, then goes through Xeua and finally ends up as a monk? (In spirit rather than the literal sense of a bald-headed cleric living in a monastery on a mountaintop, it is hoped. I am rather fond of my hair.) He realises that all magical intervention has the potential to well… “interfere” with the Divine Plan, disrupt the Natural Order of the Universe. And due to the immense devotion and respect he has developed for THE CÁR'ÁLL (universal) and hence Life, he refuses to upset or strain the cosmological balance anymore – at least no more than is absolutely necessary. This signifies the shift from the “Doing-Self” to the “Being-Self”.
SCHOOLS OF MAGIC
Ximaxian magic deals with the Content of the Cár'áll only. That is: Ximaxian magic is achieved by manipulating the ounia and the links between them. We do not usually speak about weaving strands of energy or Idea-substitution because Ximaxian Mages (arch-schools included) can only manipulate the Cár'áll’s Content, by modifying the parts that make up the Substance and the links between those components.
An Elemental mage manipulates the ounia of her element, while Xeua (link-making) and Ecua (link-breaking) mages typically manipulate the links and are therefore able to directly affect more than one element in the Cár'áll. (Xeua and Ecua mages can also manipulate the ounia, while elemental mages cannot directly manipulate links. Also, elemental mages can only affect their own element: A water mage for example can only manipulate water ounia.)
XEUÁ/ECUÁ VS RAW MAGIC: MANIPULATING THE FORM
So Xeuatans and
Ecuatans change the Structure by mending all the links they can lay their hands
on and hoping that somewhere in there the “pattern” too has been modified…
Now I would like to touch upon a subject that gives rise to a lot of good-natured - if idle - speculation during tea breaks in staff meetings. Strictly speaking, this is not something that needs to be discussed in an introductory seminar –call it an indulgence if you like. Now, I am sure there is not a soul in this hall who has not heard of Weavers – an order of mages so secretive (mythical some would say) that no one outside their sect has seen one. Maybe some among you grew up hearing stories about Weavers – or were induced into good behaviour by subtle references to them, and their disposition towards naughty children... So what distinguishes Weavers from other Raw Magi? What makes them creatures of myth and folklore? Of course we can never be certain, but speculation seldom hurts mythology: The main difference between Weavers and other raw magi is in method: the technique they use to process, operate and conduct pure auratic energy. Loosely speaking, a Weaver takes fibres of energy and binds – “weaves” – them together to create, while the ordinary raw mage seizes that energy in “lumps”. Or so I posit – you are free to disagree with me. Many among the faculty do.
RAW MAGIC AND IDEA SUBSTITUTION
The highest mode
of raw magic would be “Idea Substitution”. These magi are so gifted that they
need not bother with lacing strands from the Prime Energy to fashion the
required Cár'áll. All they do is to envision the finished version and the
strands weave themselves. The existing ‘Idea’ is swapped – keep in mind my
musings about Idea Hierarchies though – with a different one and the Cár'áll
immediately begins rearranging itself to fit the new Form it has been given
through the Idea.
OF SAND-CASTLES AND PINK PANTS: TWO EXAMPLES
Now let’s consolidate all this abstract theorization with two concrete examples: the “Skirt” and the “Sand-castle”
Imagine you have
a skirt of bright pink colour in your hand. You never really fancied skirts so
you wish to make something else out of it. The Xeuatan/Ecuatan is the tailor; he
will cut a few threads here, stitch them somewhere else until he has finally
“tailored” pants out of the skirt. (Of course it would be an Ecuatan who does
the severing, and a Xeutan who does the sewing.) While making all these minor
alterations, he has to look up every now and then to the “pant-model” hanging on
the wall as a point of reference. He has succeeded in converting the skirt into
pants but the resulting piece is still bright pink. All through, he had to work
with the given fabric. The pants are still of the same material that composed
the skirt. So while the fabric - the inherent, unprocessed energy of the aura -
remains the same, it has been crafted into a different object.
THE SAND CASTLE
Suppose you are on the beach and you wish to make castles out of the sand. Now allocate things from Group 1 to Group 2, on the assumption that the grains of sand represent ounia: