Re: Mysticism and Dream Magic

From: Peter Metcalfe <metcalph_at_aNtBGhHOZRa5r5Nj1OuKWHSpfGc16SajNxIKXeNhcdnxjf5NofR0A7WHjfuakWekrg8>
Date: Sat, 01 Mar 2008 23:19:19 +1300

At 08:19 p.m. 1/03/2008, you wrote:

>With soul, I suppose you mean the spiritual organ of a middle world
>being which can be attuned to one of the Otherworlds, or, in case of
>mystics, to the Ultimate?

I was referring to the Great Self, the link with the Transcendent realm rather than the Magical Self.

>Rather than "dies", doesn't this mean "defines"?

His magical powers that result from the destruction of his Great Self are forever fixed afterwards. The magical powers that stem from the Great Gods are forever gone. A fallen mystic could acquire magic that does not stem from the Great Gods but the power will be so piddling compared to the worldly power that he already enjoys, that the effort is really a waste of time, a trivial pursuit or a pathological obsession.

>Do you mean that Sheng Seleris stagnated in his
>magical powers?

It's implied in what's known about Sheng Seleris.

Sheng Seleris gained his power through a century's meditation in a Kralori torture camp. When he built similar camps for his followers, he had them committed for periods of less than a century so they could never become powerful enough to challenge him.

But then again, when he has been promised the world to rule, he wasn't going to be all that concerned about not being able to get any more experience points.

>(Or was he wise enought to include a clause that
>allowed stealing opponents' powers and adding them
>to his own spectrum?)

You are referring to a wrestling match in which the Red Emperor lost Kostaddi? It's far from certain that the person that the Red Emperor wrestled with was Sheng Seleris himself as I note that in one instance in the Fortunate Succession in which Sheng Seleris seems to have been killed, it turned out to be his "brother". One gets the impression that the Lunar version of history has been padded up somewhat to be more palatable.

In any event the stolen power was not added to Sheng's own spectrum but hidden in a ruby-throated hummingbird.

>So [draconism] becomes another piecemeal approach to the Ultimate.

It's an _indirect_ approach to the Ultimate. The goal of draconism is not seeking the Ultimate but becoming a Dragon. That the Dragons can understand the Ultimate more clearly than humans ever could is the Kralori practice Draconism so much but every other sage thinks the Kralori approach is fundamentally misguided.

> > It only shows up when used but there's probably some tell
> > when not in use (ie exceptionally long fingernails, a forked
> > tongue, cats eyes).

>Ingolf's abilities (used on a huge scale) appear to have been one-use
>gimmicks, unless this means once-unopposed (because new).

Ingolf was not a Kralori but an EWF hero who practiced a different version of Draconism. Why he never used his revealed organs more than once is a question with a number of possible answers, including:

>It appears that draconism is different in providing a permanent
>afterworld in Kapertine?

Kapertine is a hell for fallen Draconists. Ingolf was happy to go there because he was fearing that he was destined for a far worse hell. Only when he was told the Dragon had funny eyes (he had not manifested his Draconic Eyes) that he realized that he was not a complete failure. That his saga misinterpreted the nature of Kapertine is a trivial error.

>How are [draconic dreams] tied into dream magic?

I'd say that it's an innate ability of having a draconic soul and that the effects which could be obtained from it (like dreaming a key to unlock a complex lock) are dependent on the strength of the soul.

There's also an old Vithelan myth in which Dogsalu the first dragon is made from the evil desires of the first sorcerer, shaman and priest; so followers of the Sheredpara may be able to summon a dream dragon from the strength of their own base urges.

--Peter Metcalfe            

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