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Ufnal

Pentan religion

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8 hours ago, soltakss said:

I have always given animists access to Divine and Common Magic for no other reason that it makes sense to me.

 

As long as we have had RuneQuest, its been clear there is some overlap, with Black Fang presented as a cult with shaman-priests, and shamans getting access to divine magic pretty freely in RQ3. 

In HeroQuest, it seems as if Affinities, that loosely correspond to RuneQuest Rune Spells, are relatively uncomplicated to combine with either sorcery spells or use of spirit charms. Its feats and becoming a devotee where it becomes difficult. Likewise, spirit Charms that loosely correspond to having bound spirits in RuneQuest don't seem a big problem, its becoming a full shaman with a fetch that is problematic to combine with other magic. 

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On 07/01/2018 at 10:03 AM, Joerg said:

Arkat himself never was an adept sorcerer and only had the Man-of-All mastery of sorcery. That is a significant cut above other non-zzaburi Malkioni grasp of sorcery, but at best comparable to apprentice-level sorcery, so yes, here might be a loophole for shamans to get manipulation skills. But then their "magical organ" has already been altered and made mutable through Arkati illumination, much like the learning of Lunar magic manipulation technique requires illumination, too.

Arkat was such a poor practitioner of sorcery - a mere apprentice - that he created new spells (see Trollgods) and founded a school of sorcery still fondly practised by the families of Guhan...

One may argue he combined learning sorcery & rune cult magics only thanks to illumination?

That leads us back to Pent... where there once was this guy of little influence, named Sheng Seleris.

Oh, he only practised mysticism in Kralorela for a hundred years, so his draconic illimination is still a long way from wisdom, for sure.

But he also managed to make himself a local reputation dealing with spirits - the embodiment of the Spirit rune (so says the Guide IIRC).

So  where would he stand:

- mystic?

- shaman?

- rune-level hero?

- all of the above?

... and what magics would his followers use today?

 

I tend to think the question is fruitful because, around the campfires, while shamans chant and priests burn horse carcasses, some oracles covered in ashes whisper of the return of the once and future King of the nomads...

« Attune to your bow and inner flame, young man. The time is near for limitless deeds under the Sky. The time is near for the Avenger and Conquerer. The time is near for Sheng Seleris to be born again, from hells deeper than your soul would dare looking into... »

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On 13/1/2018 at 5:04 AM, davecake said:

As long as we have had RuneQuest, its been clear there is some overlap, with Black Fang presented as a cult with shaman-priests, and shamans getting access to divine magic pretty freely in RQ3. 

In HeroQuest, it seems as if Affinities, that loosely correspond to RuneQuest Rune Spells, are relatively uncomplicated to combine with either sorcery spells or use of spirit charms. Its feats and becoming a devotee where it becomes difficult. Likewise, spirit Charms that loosely correspond to having bound spirits in RuneQuest don't seem a big problem, its becoming a full shaman with a fetch that is problematic to combine with other magic. 

For RuneQuest I still think initiates of fully divine cults should have rune magic as their main kind of magic, as in HeroQuest. F.ex. humakti having learnt Bladesharp-5 from their cult while already being able to cast Truesword seems weirdly redundant.

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7 hours ago, Patrick said:

... and what magics would [Sheng's Magics] followers use today?

Sheng seems to have been rather dogmatic in that his best warriors all followed an ultra-traditional lifestyle.  Presumably their magics would have also been similarly conservative.

But Sheng's no longer around and neither are his Bursts.  Hence his followers today would have some more freedom in their magics (like Darkness or Storm).  At the same time, they would not be as powerful as they were in Sheng's time.

Based on what Sheng preached (Good Slavery), I'm inclined to make the Zholathi spirits bound into living mortals.  The spirit, being ultra-traditional, punishes the Zholathi severely for the slightest infraction.  Under its harsh discipline, the Zholathi begins to develop the powers of the spirit. 

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8 hours ago, Patrick said:

Arkat was such a poor practitioner of sorcery - a mere apprentice - that he created new spells (see Trollgods) and founded a school of sorcery still fondly practised by the families of Guhan...

Arkat was a heroquester first, and a sorcerer/normal magician a mere third (warrior way outweighed his use of sorcery, or other specialist magic). Creating spells from studying doesn't sound up to his alley, but putting things together by traveling to the hero plane and gathering leads there sounds like right up his alley.

So, what he gave to the trolls was sharing heroquest rewards rather than researching spells in a musty laboratory, IMO.

 

 

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Arkat was a sorcerer. He became a Man of All very early in his career. And as an Illuminate, no reason why he wasn't continuing to practice and improve his sorcery for the next many decades after that - the evidence being he founded a school of sorcery and created several spells. And being a man of all means that you are able to balance the warrior path, intellectual pursuits, and other aspects of life. Arkat contains multitudes, and just because his warrior acts loom larger to you, doesn't mean he isn't capable of intellectual or sorcerous achievements. 

Spell creation could be considered heroquesting in the Essence plane. But thats another way of saying its a complex intellectual achievement that requires magical power and intellectual discipline. Experimentation may or may not be part of it depending, lab work depending. Given the nature of Arkat's magic, his experimentation probably took a different turn, but the evidence is clearly that he is a master sorcerer - among other things... 

I wouldn't be surprised if all super heroes are Illuminated one way or another (some are taught, some it happens via heroquest such as visiting the Green Age), and have access to more than one form of magic directly or indirectly. That sort of deep range of magical techniques is probably part of what lifts a superhero above a hero, as well as raw power. 

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14 hours ago, Runeblogger said:

For RuneQuest I still think initiates of fully divine cults should have rune magic as their main kind of magic, as in HeroQuest

I think HeroQuest affinities have an intrinsic degree of abstraction compared to RuneQuest (well, all HeroQuest abilities, and all Keywords in particular). Use of your Fire affinity means all the Fire magic you have, most of which will be divine magic through your cult but not all. 

Magicians that are total purists about method are relatively rare, and for most cults it would be considered a bit weird. Most cults have a primary magical method and core practice, with a whole bunch of other stuff kind of accreted around it over centuries of tradition. 

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2 hours ago, davecake said:

Arkat was a sorcerer. He became a Man of All very early in his career. And as an Illuminate, no reason why he wasn't continuing to practice and improve his sorcery for the next many decades after that - the evidence being he founded a school of sorcery and created several spells. And being a man of all means that you are able to balance the warrior path, intellectual pursuits, and other aspects of life. Arkat contains multitudes, and just because his warrior acts loom larger to you, doesn't mean he isn't capable of intellectual or sorcerous achievements. 

Spell creation could be considered heroquesting in the Essence plane. But thats another way of saying its a complex intellectual achievement that requires magical power and intellectual discipline. Experimentation may or may not be part of it depending, lab work depending. Given the nature of Arkat's magic, his experimentation probably took a different turn, but the evidence is clearly that he is a master sorcerer - among other things... 

I wouldn't be surprised if all super heroes are Illuminated one way or another (some are taught, some it happens via heroquest such as visiting the Green Age), and have access to more than one form of magic directly or indirectly. That sort of deep range of magical techniques is probably part of what lifts a superhero above a hero, as well as raw power. 

Arkat was a troll.  The other theories are just human lies.

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19 hours ago, Patrick said:

named Sheng Seleris.

Oh, he only practised mysticism in Kralorela for a hundred years, so his draconic illimination is still a long way from wisdom, for sure.

But he also managed to make himself a local reputation dealing with spirits - the embodiment of the Spirit rune (so says the Guide IIRC).

So  where would he stand:

- mystic?

- shaman?

- rune-level hero?

- all of the above?

... and what magics would his followers use today?

From Sandy Petersen in Forgotten Secrets: One of the secrets of Superheroes that has never been revealed is that Superheroes are each connected to a particular Rune. Harrek the Berserk is Death, Jar-eel the Razoress is Harmony, Elamle was Life, and Sheng Seleris is the Spirit Rune.

This puts Sheng as superhero with complete mastery of the Spirit Rune.  In my mind he would then have all shamanic skills and abilities and likely can control much/all of the Spirit World about him including opening pathways into and out of the Spirit Plane from the mundane plane.    

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On 2/1/2018 at 8:39 PM, Patrick said:

So  where would he stand:

- mystic?

- shaman?

- rune-level hero?

- all of the above?

... and what magics would his followers use today?

As mentioned, Sheng Seleris was a SuperHero, along with the likes of Arkat.

 

I doubt he has active worshippers now, as he is locked up so tight in a Lunar Hell beyond Hell that nobody can reach him. In my Glorantha, a lot of Pentian Nomads are performing the Yelm Seeks Justice HeroQuest, where Yelm calls out for Justice and brings someone to him in Hell to atone and release him, who knows, perhaps someone will answer the call and attempt to free Sheng Seleris from imprisonment ...

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I'm sceptical about Sandy's Superhero Rune theory myself. And about Sheng being Spirit, doubly do. 

Sheng was a shaman - he was a great magician of a mostly Shamanic culture. And he has incredibly powerful spirits that follow his bidding. 

But Sheng's great secret and great power is essentially Mystical, though most would regard it as an abuse of mysticism (a different abuse than Gbaji perhaps, but still an abuse). It is based on ascetism and suffering as a path to power. That is the secret that made him greater than all the other shamans. When Sheng was only the greatest shaman of Pent, the Kralori had no problem defeating him, it was only when he returned from 100 years of torture (austerities) that he was a challenge. Thinking of him as a shaman only is like thinking of Lokomayadon as an Orlanthi. have 

Though it is possible that all superheroes have some Mystic insight. Harrek doesn't obviously, but could easily have been Illuminated during his period as a Dart Competitor. 

 

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On 07/01/2018 at 10:28 PM, Ufnal said:

 

  • Would receiving theistic magic from beings in the Path of Hell Tradition be more frowned upon than receiving spirit magic? After all, the charms reflect who you pay homage to, bargain with, receive gifts from - but runic magic reflects your core self and who or what you emulate to receive your powers...
  • Would a being that gives mainly runic and little to no spiritual magic be seen by Pentans as one that demands more personal connection to itself? As miserly or poor, seeing as it gives away little powers to its supplicants? As a loner, not surrounded by a host of lesser spirits? 

Oh I like point one above a lot, I can see people thinking this way. I'm not so sure about point 2, it strikes me as a possible slur used by rivals or enemies.

Simon Hibbs

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I don’t think Sheng has active worshippers, he is trapped in Hell. But there might be people trying to emulate his Mystic path to power, the Jolaty or zolathi path. 

Now his path takes close to 100 years to find its way to full hero status, maybe a little less. Sheng endured Kralori prison and torture, but he taught his nomad followers that scrupulously following the harsh nomad life style would work, that that way you could become a demigod. Like most powerful mysticism, it’s magic that enhances and enables other magic, rather than an exclusive practice - as taught by Sheng, it was harsh asceticism practiced in addition to rigorous practice of traditional nomad magic. 

Now, the Nights of Horror was in 1506. Say you were an infant nomad whose father died in 1506. His death, and the unspeakable horrors inflicted on your people by the Lunars, has been somehow that has tormented you your whole life, you swear vengeance, but don’t know how - then as a young man you hear of Sheng’s magic path (perhaps from an old survivor who has also sworn vengeance, perhaps even many hundreds have been taught...). A century of hiding in Pent following the harsh nomad lifestyle later, you have finally become the mighty hero you needed to be. Which would give us a number of Pentan demigods, schooled in Sheng’s mighty and merciless ways, coming into their full power right about..... now. 

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3 hours ago, davecake said:

I don’t think Sheng has active worshippers, he is trapped in Hell. But there might be people trying to emulate his Mystic path to power, the Jolaty or zolathi path. 

Now his path takes close to 100 years to find its way to full hero status, maybe a little less.

Not quite correct. Hero status is cheap, and can probably be reached in few years of intense torture and meditation, otherwise the numbers of his followers would have been limited to the few he was incarcerated with.

It took Sheng 100 years to be offered complete liberation, at which time he chose the world instead, much like the antigods..

 

3 hours ago, davecake said:

Sheng endured Kralori prison and torture, but he taught his nomad followers that scrupulously following the harsh nomad life style would work, that that way you could become a demigod. Like most powerful mysticism, it’s magic that enhances and enables other magic, rather than an exclusive practice - as taught by Sheng, it was harsh asceticism practiced in addition to rigorous practice of traditional nomad magic. 

That's possibly a lesser form. Sheng would have tens of thousands adherents practicing this. Fewer rewards, but nifty shrug off enemy magic effects.

IIRC the remaining disciples of Sheng were systematically hunted down and removed from the Surface World.

NB: I don't think that the Lunar Prison Hell was anything the Kralori could have prepared him for, and unlike in his meditations, he pobably was pushed in along with his body, so that he had no anchor to return to. I guess that's what it takes to imprison a major mystic.

 

3 hours ago, davecake said:

Now, the Nights of Horror was in 1506. Say you were an infant nomad whose father died in 1506. His death, and the unspeakable horrors inflicted on your people by the Lunars, has been somehow that has tormented you your whole life, you swear vengeance, but don’t know how - then as a young man you hear of Sheng’s magic path (perhaps from an old survivor who has also sworn vengeance, perhaps even many hundreds have been taught...). A century of hiding in Pent following the harsh nomad lifestyle later, you have finally become the mighty hero you needed to be. Which would give us a number of Pentan demigods, schooled in Sheng’s mighty and merciless ways, coming into their full power right about..... now. 

Sheng was extremely gifted, so he may have proceded faster than others, but as said above, I think that Sheng had a sizeable army of Jolaty some 30 years after returning from his prison camp. He did install a regimen of overseen austerities, though, and without that oversight, a normal Pentan may very well have been slowed down to much less progress.

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Glad we start talking about Sheng on a Pentan thread ;-)

does he have followers as of, say, 1621?

i would say yes, for mainly three reasons:

1/ MGF:

what a pity it would be to discard such a huge potential for stories

2/ Cultural imprint:

yes, he was trapped and unreachable for a looong time. Yet Arkat has been out of reach for far longer, and still has followers. Why wouldn’t Sheng?

3/ Magics:

the teachings survive the teacher (again, Arkat’s school of sorcery is a good example). His followers were indeed hunted down, just like Godlearners did their best to suppress all Arkatism - not with full success...

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1 hour ago, Patrick said:

Glad we start talking about Sheng on a Pentan thread ;-)

does he have followers as of, say, 1621?

i would say yes, for mainly three reasons:

1/ MGF:

what a pity it would be to discard such a huge potential for stories

2/ Cultural imprint:

yes, he was trapped and unreachable for a looong time. Yet Arkat has been out of reach for far longer, and still has followers. Why wouldn’t Sheng?

3/ Magics:

the teachings survive the teacher (again, Arkat’s school of sorcery is a good example). His followers were indeed hunted down, just like Godlearners did their best to suppress all Arkatism - not with full success...

The Arkat parallel is fairly good, but then there is also the Nysalor parallel to consider.

Are there any Pentans trying to emulate Sheng's achievements? You bet.

Are they doing it right? Not likely. There are bound to be various approaches to become as badass as Sheng, and "clean nomadic living" is way too wimpy to gain the necessary austerities, so expect various variants of self-mutilation or assisted self-mutilation. Some will lead to some mystic insight and magical benefits to reap from it.

But when Sheng returns, will he recognize such practitioners as ready to serve him? I don't think so. He will welcome them in his ranks, and have those willing to walk _his_ paths administered the right amount of suffering. Those who make it through that harsh school will be the new Jolaty. Those who don't... there are always others eager to follow.

 

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On 06/02/2018 at 5:24 PM, Joerg said:

Hero status is cheap, and can probably be reached in few years of intense torture and meditation, otherwise the numbers of his followers would have been limited to the few he was incarcerated with.

Hero status is never cheap. Sheng followers are very powerful and mighty, but they are only on the path, not yet at its end - Sheng became a hero, then 90 years later became a god. They are each aiming to be another Sheng, effectively. I don’t know if he is incarcerated with any followers, or few, but he starts recruiting followers from 1355 on - I don’t think many seriously take him up on it until he conquers Boshan etc though.  And I don’t think torture and meditation are, on their own, that useful or sufficient for Shengs purposes, he isn’t an orthodox mystic. It’s austerities, the practices need to be rigorously maintained, it’s just there is also a big payoff for prolonged practice.

And I realise it may not be clearly articulated in the Guide etc, but some documents I have make it clear this is a method that takes roughly a century to reach fruition (I think 90 years) - I think you have to loyally serve Sheng, ‘Good Slavery’ (as contrasted to the Kralorela Bad Slavery Sheng endured), for many years before you are truly liberated, like Sheng is. My theory is they are re-enacting Kargzant gathering the fires and re-awakening the stars before the Dawn. 

On 06/02/2018 at 5:24 PM, Joerg said:

t took Sheng 100 years to be offered complete liberation, at which time he chose the world instead, much like the antigods..

That is one interpretation, but I think there are less mystic interpretations of what happened. Sheng is drawing on Dara Happan theist and Pentan ways, not just Orthodox Kralorelan. The Kralorelans think he is a mystic who went wrong, the Dara Happans think he perverted the Solar rites with nomad ways, the Lunars think he was the Emperors Other, the Pentan’s think he used pure nomad ways to conquer, and they all are partially right, but only partially. 

They don’t succeed in replicating Shengs Powers for the most part - most of his followers find that their century of service is magically sabotaged - Godunya is able to magically prove, with his mighty Curse, that Sheng is UnJust, so their powers fail just before the battle of Kitor. 

There are degrees - the Bursts do not just follow the nomad lifestyle, but eschew all material comforts, and practice a whole range of rigorous ascetic spiritual disciplines. And get to be Demi-gods, with all sorts of cool demigod nomad powers, like being able to ride their horses into sky realm, and getting supernatural weapons from there. They probably also do get some Mystic ability to shrug odd some Magic’s. But Sheng probably doesn’t have tens of thousands of them - they are all serious dedicated magicians. He probably has tens of thousands of the Rays/ Emanations, but those guys are mostly just normal nomads with a little magical smarts and well resourced from looting. 

 

 

 

 

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I do think that it’s impossible to directly follow the path Sheng’s Bursts took, as his teachings were based around loyalty to him magically (and magically sabotaged, as noted above), but it’s possible to follow something quite close. It’s also likely that very few direct practitioners survived, and those that did found themselves a minority within a Pentax culture that wanted to move on and find alternatives (such as the Storm tribes).

But it’s also likely that many of Shengs ideas survived and there are many people trying variants and reinventions. Some are trying to repeat his path from first principles, some trying to use his system salvaging as much as they can (and will be delighted when he is freed), some trying to reinvent it to include other systems that are seen as more viable than his ancient Solar ways. 

So, extreme ascetics, mysticism, but variants. Mostly variants on Shengs system, so combined with Solar shamanism, ancient Kargzant etc rituals, pure nomad practices. But some variants. Particularly, the same weird mystic asceticism applied to the Storm gods (eg followers of North War Wind (Humakt) with the equivalent of all the gifts, and as Illuminates able to get away with twisting the meaning of the inconvenient geases). 

What sort of ascetic practices? I’m thinks strict diet (eg only horse meat), not drinking water, meditation for hours, never sleeping under cover (in some cases not sleeping for extended periods), sleeping on sharp rocks, slashing at the body, staring at the sun, voluntary hyperthermia (meditating next to fires etc), never being in full darkness, sometimes not touching the ground but being mounted for days, staring at the sun. 

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13 hours ago, davecake said:

I do think that it’s impossible to directly follow the path Sheng’s Bursts took, as his teachings were based around loyalty to him magically (and magically sabotaged, as noted above), but it’s possible to follow something quite close. It’s also likely that very few direct practitioners survived, and those that did found themselves a minority within a Pentax culture that wanted to move on and find alternatives (such as the Storm tribes).

But it’s also likely that many of Shengs ideas survived and there are many people trying variants and reinventions. Some are trying to repeat his path from first principles, some trying to use his system salvaging as much as they can (and will be delighted when he is freed), some trying to reinvent it to include other systems that are seen as more viable than his ancient Solar ways. 

So, extreme ascetics, mysticism, but variants. Mostly variants on Shengs system, so combined with Solar shamanism, ancient Kargzant etc rituals, pure nomad practices. But some variants. Particularly, the same weird mystic asceticism applied to the Storm gods (eg followers of North War Wind (Humakt) with the equivalent of all the gifts, and as Illuminates able to get away with twisting the meaning of the inconvenient geases). 

What sort of ascetic practices? I’m thinks strict diet (eg only horse meat), not drinking water, meditation for hours, never sleeping under cover (in some cases not sleeping for extended periods), sleeping on sharp rocks, slashing at the body, staring at the sun, voluntary hyperthermia (meditating next to fires etc), never being in full darkness, sometimes not touching the ground but being mounted for days, staring at the sun. 

You can always tell which one is the Sheng fanatic by how they walk... Never defecating sounds possible as well.

Edited by jeffjerwin

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8 hours ago, jeffjerwin said:

Never defecating sounds possible as well.

Perhaps less a vow, but a result of not eating. But certainly convenient to never have to poop if you literally spend your entire time mounted. 

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1 hour ago, davecake said:

Perhaps less a vow, but a result of not eating. But certainly convenient to never have to poop if you literally spend your entire time mounted. 

I was thinking also of the diet entirely of meat...

Of course constipation and gout don't exist in Glorantha except perhaps as punishment for breaking spiritual rules or as a consequence of disease spirits.

Edited by jeffjerwin
bizarre typo

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On 2018-01-12 at 9:08 AM, davecake said:

I agree that the four fold division of magical practices is an over-simplification of the complexity of real world religious practices. IRL practices we see an amazing mixture of ideas within traditions, and diversity, and mixing it up.

But it’s Greg Stafford’s creation, and Greg set the rules for how magic works. He did so from a strong perspective of personal magical practice, so it’s richer and deeper and more thoughtful than most other gaming approaches to magic. But it still reflects his personal ideas (though of course have changed as his ideas evolved).

So we might disagree with how well some aspects of Gloranthan magic reflects real world magical or religious practice, for those of us that practice and/or study such things (I suspect I’d get classified as mostly henotheist?). But ultimately, some things it doesn’t matter about how much it reflects our personal understanding, in Glorantha it works a particular way. To an extent, Gloranthan magic is like Glorantha metallurgy - in some ways, is just different, and our personal knowledge and experience of terrestrial equivalents just doesn’t apply directly. 

We should expect stricter lines of demarcation in Glorantha than in the real world. The Gloranthan practices work, and they reflect how the world actually works, so you can't just make up anything you like. Non-functional magic would be an even larger waste when the real thing is available. Meanwhile in the real world, none of this works, which means that no matter what you make up, it will fail to work equally well, and hence nothing 'enforces' such differences between practices. 

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1 hour ago, Akhôrahil said:

We should expect stricter lines of demarcation in Glorantha than in the real world. The Gloranthan practices work, and they reflect how the world actually works, so you can't just make up anything you like. Non-functional magic would be an even larger waste when the real thing is available. Meanwhile in the real world, none of this works, which means that no matter what you make up, it will fail to work equally well, and hence nothing 'enforces' such differences between practices. 

This sounds like the old chaos dragon "misapplied magic" rearing its ugly head again...

Quite a lot of practices work fine sitting on the edge between magic systems. The Orlanthi aren't that far from animism, IMO much less so than shown e.g. in the King of Dragon Pass computer game (which came from the height of the "Three absolutely separate worlds" dogma). Pelorian Theism with much less of personal initiation than the Orlanthi have might be a purer form of Theism. If not for the mystical crap shooting up there every second century.

We tend to compare the magics for their benefit to the individual, as that is the way how roleplayers experience it. Magical build-up in or for a community is weakly treated - there are some rules for Heroquest support in Hero Wars and HQ1, and there were some thoughts on the chain of veneration for Malkioni (of all possible cultures...).

The wyter rules are quite unhelpful, too, tying access to it and its power to the leader of a community, only. So, for much of magical contribution a Gloranthan provides to his community, there is little if any feedback while things work as they are supposed to. There may be sudden backlashes seemingly out of nowhere if there are some bumps in the contributions or the administration of those (through the leaders).

But for quite a lot of magical activities, the Gloranthan individual just has to trust that his contributions work, and that they are meaningful. Not quite so different from religions on our planet.

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1 hour ago, Akhôrahil said:

We should expect stricter lines of demarcation in Glorantha than in the real world. The Gloranthan practices work, and they reflect how the world actually works, so you can't just make up anything you like. Non-functional magic would be an even larger waste when the real thing is available. Meanwhile in the real world, none of this works, which means that no matter what you make up, it will fail to work equally well, and hence nothing 'enforces' such differences between practices. 

I think I agree with the conclusion, but not the argument.

in the real world, taking perfectly working but very different approaches and trying to combine them is something we do all the time. Medicine and surgery used to be completely separate professions, for example. Musicians use computers and electronics. It’s hard to think of an area where, finding multiple different ways to approach a problem, there aren’t people, often a lot of people, even the majority, who try to combine them. 

And in the real world, if you think none of it works, you are making assumptions about what people people are trying to achieve from it. 

As far as strict lines of demarcation go - there is ample evidence from current canon sources that there are a number of magical traditions who regularly cross the lines between the fourfold division (Lhankor Mhy sorcery, Urox/Storm Bull as both a divine and spirit tradition, Waha, etc). There is also plenty of evidence that combining multiple traditions is usually difficult. 

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I must have expressed myself poorly – this isn't about misapplied worship or crossover practices. Rather, the three magical worlds are facts of Glorantha which are experienced by people; and magical systems, beliefs and practices are bound to reflect this to a significant extent. They will commonly work these magical facts into the belief structure and their practicies, and they are not the kinds of things that can be simply disregarded.

Meanwhile, in our world, this is not all the case – magical and religious practices have no actual magical otherworlds to reflect, and therefore lack this underlying principle that Gloranthan systems tend toward. In our world, we can't sort beliefs and practices into how they reflect magical realities – anyone constructing a religion or practice here is limited only by his or her imagination, and any outcomes are merely social and psychological, unconnected to any magical reality. 

(For instance, in our mythologies and practices, "sorcery" certainly doesn't mean "the manipulation of impersonal magical forces through logical methods".  It basically means "bad magic", the kind of things they do.) 

((About misapplied worship – I'm not a fan of it, and was surprised about the importance it took on in Hero Wars. I think it can occasionally have a place when people are simply "doing it wrong" – if Bob Heortling tries to interact with a spirit the same way he would with a godling, sacrificing to it or emulating it, it's going to be at best inefficient. I would imagine that the Aoelians and Carmanians initially had difficulties trying to integrate new things into their systems. But with any developed magical practice, the entire point is that they have worked out what works even if there were initial difficulties, so no such practice would be "doing it wrong".))

Edited by Akhôrahil
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