Lead cross and Magical Miscelany

From: simon_hibbs@lycosmail.com
Date: Tue 24 Aug 1999 - 16:08:48 EEST

Helo people. I've been away a few weeks and just finished
wading through the last dozen Digests. Here are some
comments on topics raised in that time.

Re : The Lead Cross Quest

The orrigin of this quest is Makla Mann's quest to destroy
the healers of healer valley. These healers had been
resurecting 'the wrong people' and thus were in his view
abusing their life-giving powers and weakening the power
of Death which he held sacred. By righting this wrong he
gains the Lead Cross, which gives him power over undead,
who are also dead things which have no right to walk the

In order to recreate this quest, the questor would have to
slay a resurecting healer. The problem is that, despite
the supposedly moral objectives of makla mann, unfortunately
any healer that has ever resurected anyone will in
fact do. Idealy, the healer should have resurected the
'wrong kind of person' as well, such as a criminal, a
chaotic or a sworn enemy of the questor.

An ideal target for such a quest would be the wild broo
healer of the rockwood mountains. I'm sure many lunar
or solar healers would also fit the bill.

Re : Combining Magical Practices

Before deciding what magical systems can or cannot be
combined, I think we need to consider what magic actualy
is. Is it just a set of rote formulas involving hand waving
and chanting? If so, surely you should be able to combine
whatever magical arts you like. Of course magic is much more
than just the external trappings and mummery visible to the
profane outsider.

Magic isn't just a side show tacked on to a religion, in a
very powerfull way the magic realy is the religion. It isn't
simply a product of the philosophy of a people, it is their
living philosophy. In the words of the great Obi Wan Kenobi,
what is a magician but a practicing theorist?

If you are an Orlanthi Thunder Priest, you know for a fact
that the air around all of us is a living thing, part of
the immortal body of Umath, and is thus sacred. Sorcerors
believe that air is simply inert matter, to be manipulated
and dominated using materialist arts. In fact, the workings
of their magic prove this to them. To an orlanthi, such
an attitude is vile sacrilege. Thus the very concepts
necessery to sorcerous manipulation of the air are abhorent
to them. The world views of the two systems of magic are
fundamentaly incompatible.

Henotheism blurs the boundaries, but I think it looses out as
a result. Initiates might learn lay sorcery instead of spirit
magic, but their priests use divine spells rather than being
sorcerers. As a result the priesthood do not have a deep
understanding of sorcery and are less well equiped to teach
the propper spells to their flock. I believe that the spells
available to them are more limited as only those parts of
the two philosophies that can be made compatible are
incorporated into the faith. Any magical lore that would
contradict other parts of their beliefs are excised, drasticaly
limiting the powers available to them.

This is different to the situation with theists such as the
Orlanthi. The Orlanth cult teaches only selected spirit magic
to it's worshipers, but there's nothing to stop them
learning almost any other spirit magic from a shaman or from
a friendly cult. On the other hand an Aeolian initiate
learning proscribed sorcery spells is potentialy dabbling in
magical philosophies that are heretical to their church.
They are at a likely to cause them doubts about the doctrines
of their faith and lead them into error. They walk a very fine
theological line.

Lunars and other mystics bypass many of these strictures.
They see boyond the intelectual artifices of doctrine
and the emotional crutch of faith, at a heavy price.

Sorry, waffling on a bit.

Simon Hibbs


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