The Grimoire of Enlightenment is a scientific journal published by Doctor Ciel that analyzes the various forms of magic as they are understood by the various denizens of Li. It is intended to give non-magical characters a greater insight into the world of magic, full of empirical studies on the various types of magic observable in the world around them. It is primarily a response to the misgivings and confusion held by some citizens of the Life Sphere toward characters from other worlds that obey seemingly different laws when it comes to magic. However, it is sometimes heralded as a radical attack on magic skepticism due to its adoption of many controversial terms. This controversy inadvertently caused it to become one of the first books to gain greater awareness throughout the life sphere.
- 1 The Definition of Magic
- 2 The Conservation Of Mass
- 3 Where Magical Energy Comes From
- 4 Turning mana into magic, the application of energy
- 5 Anti-Magic, how it works and its limitations
- 6 Contributors
The Definition of Magic
Magic, in its most basic form, is the practice of using magical energy to manipulate reality. Magical energy has many names such as ki, chi, qi, psi, ether, willpower or just 'magic'! However, for the purposes of this book we will be referring to magical energy using the umbrella term mana.
The Conservation Of Mass
A common misconception about certain types of magic, especially when dealing with godly figures, is that magic defies the principle of mass conservation. This idea that magic can create something from nothing simply does not appear to be true, though. This misunderstanding is born from the limited outside perception of what actually happens. A magician can conjure a ball of flames from seemingly nowhere, but just because most of us cannot see where it comes from with the naked eye does not mean it cannot be perceived or understood. All magical feats have a catalyst and an energy requirement of some nature, and in a controlled study of energy emissions, it was determined that, while skilled magicians are extremely efficient with their energy output, mass is never truly lost or gained. In fact, we discovered to the contrary that more powerful magicians simply have more massive 'presences', and therefore have substantially more energy to expend.
Where Magical Energy Comes From
This type of magical power source is defined by its physical location inside the body of the magician. Their bodies become saturated with the energy used to perform their magic. Because of the direct link between the power source and the magician, they are effectively immune to the effects of anti-magic. However, most people will find that there is a limit to how much mana their body can contain. In some species, such as the elves of Azeroth, reaching this limit can cause extremely destructive physiological effects on the body and moderation is needed. In others, excess magic is simply lost, leaking back into the environment and escaping the body. It may be possible to track endosomatic magic users based on the mana concentrated in their bodies over great distances.
Some people's bodies produce their own mana! This is called manageny. Mana is produced much like any other form of energy used by the body. These types of magic users can recover their mana while they sleep, or just by waiting for long enough. However, for many species manageny is too slow to be relied upon in combat.
Some people do not naturally produce mana of their own, but are able to consume or absorb it from the world around them to utilize as they see fit. Kirby, from the planet Popstar, inhales and consumes enemies to steal their powers. What's interesting about this is that when he eats a magical enemy he gains the ability to use their magic, despite having little magical potency of his own. Note that, generally speaking, once mana has been used to perform magic it is rendered inert. That is to say, a fireball created with magic is indistinct from a fireball created through more conventional means. It is therefore generally ineffective to eat a spell, but rather pertinent to eat the magician casting it.
Much like a manaphage, a manavore must consume or absorb magic from the world around them. Unlike a manaphage, however, mana is an essential nutrient in their diet and they suffer from malnutrition or even die if deprived of it for long enough. Tolerance to mana deprivation varies greatly between various manivorous races.
Some magicians don't or can't store magic inside their bodies, and so they channel it from external sources instead! This has the unintended consequence of leaving them vulnerable to losing access to their magic source, however, they often rely upon power sources so vast they have little to fear in terms of running dry under normal conditions. They may also be more difficult to track because of their relative lack of mana saturation while they aren't channeling.
You could easily confuse channeled magic with endosomatic magic if you didn't know what to look for. Rather than using an internal magic source, the magician pulls magic from the world around them at the time they need it. Usually, channeled magic is used either because the magician's body cannot store magic or because storing magic has painful or inconvenient consequences for the individual.
Loaned Magic and Divine Magic
This is magic loaned by a patron, sometimes known as Divine Magic when that patron is a deity. The patron generally fits into one of the other magic types, and the wielder of this magic is merely acting as an extension of the donator's power when performing magical feats without necessarily needing to have any magical power of their own. Good examples of this type of magic are Pit's Power of Flight and popping puyos.
Enchantments and Rune Magic
This describes the practice of attaching magical energies to objects. When a person is enchanted, it is referred to as loaned magic as described above. This grants magical properties to the object in question, such as granting a sword the ability to cause whatever it strikes to spontaneously combust. Enchantments are only as effective or powerful as the magician doing the enchanting or, alternatively, the potency of the items being used to enchant the object. Most enchantments have a limited amount of uses before their power begins to fade. However, exceptionally well-made enchantments may have so many uses they can effectively be considered permanent. Rune magic is extremely similar to enchantments, using inscribed symbols of power almost like an ornate written language to describe exactly what should happen once the rune is tapped.
Natural Magical Energy Sources
Food and Drink
Some types of food and drink have natural reserves of mana in them. In nature, mana usually only accumulates in modest amounts in any given area or body. Consequently, manavores themselves tend to be the largest sources of mana available in a given area that might be considered edible, depending on who you ask of course. Manaphages, in contrast, are more likely to expend their magical energy in the short term rather than keeping it in their bodies for extended periods of time.
Some people are capable of converting other forms of energy into magical energy, and can absorb these energies from the world around them to generate power for their own needs. This usually has a highly destructive effect on whatever is being drained, manifesting as rapid necrosis. Consequently, it is considered dark magic.
Although we are unable to fact check this form of magical energy generation for ethical reasons, it is understood on good authority that souls are a very potent source of magical energy. A soul, in fact, is pure magical energy not unlike an analog imprint of a person's identity. Some worlds refer to souls as a 'heart', metaphorically speaking. This same type of energy seems to be responsible for the phenomenon of ghosts observed on Li, as souls with enough energy to manifest themselves and a strong desire to remain on the planet will often manifest themselves as 'spirits'. Unfortunately, the physiology of spirits is beyond the scope of this grimoire.
Perhaps the most amazing source of natural magic and the most recently discovered are Li's ley lines. All around the planet, whether it be in the sky or under the earth, are masive river-like streams of mana that rush freely around the planet. Unfortunately, little is known about ley lines at this time, other than that they offer a seemingly limitless external supply of mana if one is able to tap into them.
Turning mana into magic, the application of energy
There are many, many ways to translate magical potential into magical reality. Below, I will attempt to simplify the many methods down to their bare essentials. Note that because every world across our vast multiverse has its own mythology and terminology, I will be using my own terminology for the purposes of indexing. This is not to invalidate anyone's teachings, but rather to make the book more compatible with a wider audience. Thank you for your understanding. Note: Magicians are not necessarily restricted to only one option.
Force of Mind
Through raw strength of will, a magician's attacks gain their strength. The brain is truly a muscle to this type of magician. This type of magic is extremely common with pokemon, psychics, psionics, ki, and chi users. Combined with the ease of learning it, these factors make it one of the most common types fo magic. It is sometimes known as the mental counterpart to Force of Determination and Force of Life Energy.
Knowledge is power, and the only thing limiting the power of a magician that uses knowledge to fuel their magic is whether they know the power word, runic symbol or technique to do exactly what they need. This type of magic is common with wizards and scholarly mages. However, it is very difficult to learn and there is a very strong correlation between age and skill as a result.
Force of Body
Known informally as the muscle wizard, these types of mages use kinetic energy to give their attacks potency and either specific movements or power words to give them shape. Because this type of magic is limited by one's physical strength and is somewhat awkward to use, it is undesirable to many. In fact, it seems to be the rarest type of magic as far as surveys showed, with only one practitioner out of Hylia's Grace Academy's entire student body practicing it. However, it is relatively easy to learn if one has the body for it and has been proven to enable people who are otherwise unable to use magic because of disabilities to defend themselves.
These 'magicians' sacrifice their own health to fuel their attacks. They are unique in that they gain power from pain, becoming stronger as their body grows more weary. The most powerful of these types of magicians will continue fighting at their best until their body fails them and may perish without ever realizing they'd reached their body's limits. Often associated with martial arts varieties of magic. It is sometimes known as the physical counterpart to Force of Willpower and Force of Determination.
Force of Personality
Righteousness defines these magical warriors. Often associated with those who serve a deity or integrate practices of faith into their magic, such as holy knights, paladins, priests, and in some cases cultists or other dark variations of the aforementioned. These magicians are frightening in their rock hard resolution, however, if their faith is shaken or they are forced to act outside of their moral code their magical potency will falter.
Controlled passion defines this type of magician. Their feelings, rather than their thoughts or strength of will, both shape their magic and determine its potency. They can heal and protect their allies with the power of love or scald their enemies with the flames of their hatred. Some can even Definitely the easiest form of magic to learn, provided you have a teacher. However, it requires a certain level of discipline as uncontrolled emotions may be dangerous. Often associated with magical girls. I was able to speak with Princess Peach, a particularly prodigious user of Emotion Magic, and get some insight into how it is performed. She spoke to me in terms of love magic, but in theory using other forms of emotion magic should operate similarly:
- You have to be able to focus on feelings of love on command. If you're not a loving person or you have difficulty opening up emotionally in front of others, you're basically shit outta luck right off the bat.
- You need to be able to focus those feelings. This becomes especially difficult in the heat of battle. If you don't have proper focus, your love magic will be unstable and likely whiff. Things that can disrupt your focus include anything that emotionally distracts you, such as a punch in the face.
- You need to be able to reconcile the paradox of using love in the name of violence if you want to use it for things other than healing or party tricks and such.
- And the strength of your love and conviction (See: Force of Personality) ultimately determines the strength of your love magic. So even if you do all the above, your love magic might not be nearly as impressive as Peach's. Raffina is a good example of someone who can technically use love magic ... but isn't very good at it.
If you never give up, you'll never truly fail. Or at least, that's the impression one gets watching one of these types of magic users fight. The power of single-minded determination fuels the potency of their attacks. Often considered one of the most powerful types of magic second only to knowledge in terms of potential, however it becomes exponentially more difficult to control oneself the more they give themselves into determination. Clumsy and reactionary tendencies may begin to surface, as well as psychopathy at the extremes. This type of magic is the emotional counterpart to Force of Willpower and Force of Life Energy.
Anti-Magic, how it works and its limitations
Anti-Magic, for the purposes of this grimoire, is anything that pre-emptively prevents a magician from manipulating reality. Because the difference between a 'natural' fireball and a fireball conjured with magic is purely contextual, there is little purpose to calling any other method of defending oneself against magic "anti-magic". Only certain types of magic are vulnerable to anti-magic, however. They are listed below.
Blocking Exosomatic Magic Sources
Exosomatic magic originates from outside the body and a link to its source must be achieved to fuel any given feat of magic. In theory and in practice, this means that it is possible to disrupt a magician's link to their mana source, heavily impairing their ability to perform magical feats if not rendering them fully helpless. For magical constructs who rely on channeled magic to maintain their existance, the prolonged or sometimes even immediate effects of anti-magic exposure are lethal.
Many magicians utilize what's known as a power word to invoke and shape their magic, such as calling out fire to summon a fireball or thunder to summon electricity. If they are unable to speak, they are unable to cast spells. Note that there is a distinction between being able to speak and being able to be heard. In theory, a magician should still be able to cast spells in space, or underwater, despite not being able to project their voice audibly.
Many magicians require the user of their limbs or some other physical action to direct and control their spells. For example, a dragon using its breath weapon has to look at its target, open its mouth, and exhale to do so properly. And a mage calling down a lightning bolt from the sky may have to point to where they want it to fall, or direct where they want their fireball to fly with a hand. In some cases, simply restraining a mage is enough to prevent them from properly casting spells.
Emotional or Mental Instability
Magicians often, but not always, require some willpower or focus to perform their magic. Few and far between is the magician who won't be at least mildly burdened by a good blow to the head or an inability to focus on what they're doing. Magicians who use emotions to fuel their magical abilities are particularly vulnerable to this, as emotional instability may outright cause them to lose control of their powers altogether.
Blocking Scrying and Mind Reading
It is possible to spite a psychic of a scryer attempting find your location by using magic wards to create visual distortion that isn't seen by the naked eye. Although impractical, it is also possible to prevent a psychic from reading your mind by flooding your thoughts with 'white noise'. However, as this generally makes thinking in general rather difficult if you're doing it properly this limits its effectiveness.
Doctor Ciel: Publisher and Editor
Princess Peach: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of force of emotion magic, esp. with regards to the love and support she gave throughout this entire ordeal.
Amitwo: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of ley lines and the testing she aided in doing with them, as well as allowing us to analyze her for more information on the physiology of magical constructs.
Arle: Special thanks for demonstrating the force of conviction for observation and testing. And special thanks to Blue's blastoise Blasty for putting up with those tests.
Scarlet: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of souls.
Ms. Accord: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of puyo popping.
Raffina: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of force of strength magic.
Iris: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of force of determination magic.
Palutena: Special thanks for contributing her knowledge of divine magic and deities.