UNDERSTANDING XIMAXIAN MAGIC THROUGH THE CÁR'ÁLL

PART: III: WHAT IS MAGIC?

 


The following text is a verbatim transcription of one of Lord Frozenzephyr’s lectures at the Academy of Ximax. As such, its informal tone and methodical reiteration of key points is ideally suited to the needs of the uninitiated. It aims to introduce the newcomer to the Ximaxian system by examining the Cár'áll concept. The text discusses: what the Cár'áll is; its composition; and how the different Schools of Magic (Elemental – Xeua/Ecua – Raw) can be analysed in terms of the parts of the Cár'áll they manipulate.

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.



THE FOUR ELEMENTAL SCHOOLS
AND
THE ARCH SCHOOLS OF XEUÁ AND ECUÁ

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…

But how does Raw Magic complete the same assignment? Firstly: What is Raw magic? What differentiates a Raw Mage from all other wizards? Raw magic is the ability to use strands of pure (“raw”) auratic energy to craft the desired effects. The first key difference here is that they do not need to work with what is there – altering its various components to affect a greater conversion in the whole. Instead of having to wreck their minds to make the pieces fit, Raw Mages can just create the missing pieces. Therefore, “raw magic is essentially a magic of creation” – hmm… where have you heard that before? Secondly, they are able to touch the Form, which – as mentioned earlier – lies outside Existence, because they work directly with the “unprocessed”, “unqualified” energy of THE CÁR'ÁLL that constructs and powers the tangible universe.

Raw magic can not only use this Prime Energy as it is to create – ie to fashion new Cár'állia – but can also manipulate, “tune” and refine it to different qualities. Suppose raw auratic energy is a piece of thread. Raw magi can weave these strands into a robe – a Cár'áll with Content and Form. So they can create new Cár'állia out of the very essence of Existence – akin to spinning a robe out of thin air. But raw magi can also take a pre-existing Cár'áll and transform it – so they can turn a pink robe into a blue one, shrink a large robe into a smaller one... The point to note is that raw magic does this without tweaking with the individual components that make up that robe. This is important. An Elemental mage would have to painstakingly replace each pink thread with a blue one. If pink threads represent fire and blue water ounia, the Raw Mage does not have to first remove the fire ounia and add water ounia in their place – rather, he converts the fire ounia into water ounia. Quite literally, one moment you are a man and the next a pig...

THE WEAVERS

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”

PINK PANTS

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 Raw Mage is the weaver: Instead of having to adjust the skirt here and there, he can just unravel the shaped-product (the skirt) back to its raw form (pink fabric) and spin more of that fabric where necessary until he has a pair of pants. The ultimate Raw-mage just decrees “Pants!” and immediately the skirt unmakes itself and pink yarn volunteers from the spinning wheel and together the two weave themselves into the Form of a pair of pants. The Raw-mage grins smugly and leans back on his chair while his pipe is busy lighting itself. Don’t ask what a master of Resonance Magic will do with pink pants – powerful men are entitled to their eccentricities. Now homework: Can you transpose the above paragraph and write out the sand-castle example yourself?

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:

Group 1 Group 2
- San particles - Ouná
- The resulting sand-castle - Spell-casting
- The act of building the sand-castle - The Cár'áll (Individual Aura)
- Sand - THE CÁR'ÁLL (Universal Aura)
- The beach - Idea
- Castle-concept - Form
- The shape of the sand-castle - Content
- The mould for the sand-castle - Content: Substance (Auratic energy; Cár'áll)
- The sand-castle together with the mould that sculpted it - Content: Structure

 Date of last edit 29th Sleeping Dreameress 1669 a.S.

Information provided by Coren FrozenZephyr View Profile