What is Magic?
Magic is, in essence, a manifestation of intent, whether this means you must bend the laws of reality or the wills of man to your whims. There's many ways to do this, ranked in terms of dimensionality, or the number of "Ds" that are used. Just like tensor mathematics, the dimensionality of magic starts at 0 and increases with the complexity of manifestation. Also of note, potency usually diminishes with complexity. Let's start explaining at rank 0:
0D: Inherent Magic
On the level of gods, the highest degree of reality manipulation; will it, and it is so.
than spoken, since the language of magic is nonvocalized. Not easy to do, and can be damaging to one's Soul
The most common sort of magic for its practicality. Can be used in very simple single-rune or intricate multi-rune effects.
Man-made or natural objects which by their very geometry have a magical impact.
The impact of magic on the past and future.
There's also augmented "half-ranks" to describe other sorts of magical manifestation that are perhaps able to be considered a blend of multiple levels of magic.
Magical gestures based on Runic Sign Language (RSL).
Stance and body motions in the form of dance that enable magical impact.
Domains of Magic
Through all these means, magic is split into 9 different unique components, called Domains. It is up to the will of the user to intelligently utilize these domains alone or together in order to adequately manifest their magic. Each of the 9 domains of magic are representative of one of the members of the family of Gods
. The only exception is the Allmother, who presides over both Spirit and Shadow magic, as a result of her fate.
From the Divine Couple
Creation, Beginnings, Birth
The Passage of Time, the Journey
Destruction, Endings, Death
From the Firstborne Celestials
Literal Magic, Intensity
Figurative Magic, Principles
From the Secondborne Elementals
Flames, Accumulation, Power
Material, Transformation, Growth
Phase, Motion, Decay
Energy, Transportation, Conversion
History of Magic
Before the Universalization of Magic
, the realm was devoid of ambient metaphysical particles; no runes meant anything, no arcane structures would form, no dances held power, and perhaps destiny itself was mundane. The only methods of imposing ones will on reality was to manifest directly from one's Soul
. Pneumanine, of course, were the most capable of this feat, but their magic was limited to basic Spellcasting
and the most simplistic of Runic Sign Language
. Furthermore, this act of direct manifestation is toilsome on the individual. Overall, this made magic a rare and dangerous art in the prehistoric era.
Wizards & Mages
Those trained in or gifted with powerful magic are known as wizards and mages, respectively. Magical ability is known to correlate with three things, knowledge, experience, and willpower. Knowledge and experience toe the same line of intuitive correlation: a wizard researches a new runic gesture, and is able to successfully perform the magic as a result, or a mage manifests the intended magic by experimental trial and error with a runic inscription. Willpower, however, is a subjective and at times tumultous metric for the potency of magic. It is thus better described in terms of comparative magical ability. Consider the following example from Archmage Wordenkov during a lecture to a group of pupils at Tomet:
"I shall inscribe onto this paper a simple hardening enchantment, and fold the paper into a box."
He places the box on his hand.
"...and by extension of my will, the rune is powered. It is now uncrushable. Kylin, step forth and give it test. Crush it. I said crush it. Crush it! Come on, you geccop, crush it!"
After repeated attempts to physically and metaphysically smash the box, the pupil is unable to.
"That's enough. Now, your turn. Will it uncrushable by my hands. Your will versus mine, and we see that-"
The Archmage crushes the box.
"Mine is greater."
-Demonstration circa. 1284
memorabilium: Kylin Brillindot later succeeded Wordenkov as Archmage in 1302
Battlemages will say that the winner of any magical duel is going to be who has the stronger will, but unlike the demonstration by Archmage Wordenkov, this is not a simple assessment, like height or weight of an individual. At times, it may seem a foe who has been downtrodded and cast out of the fight, yet their willpower surges at their time of greatest need, beyond what is thought to have been their limits. Children are notorious for this feat. As such, the combat of wills in magic is an ongoing area of research in pneumatology.