Mind is one of nine Spheres of magic in Mage: The Ascension. The Akashic Brotherhood have occupied the Seat of Mind in the Council of Nine Mystic Traditions since its founding. The Shard Realm of Mind maps physically to Neptune.
Since human beings perceive reality through a complex interplay of consciousness, the Mind Sphere affects how a being sees the world around it. Such study leads to the investigation of thought, the existence of perfect forms, the idea of intelligence, and inquiry divorced from mere physical form.
The Mind magician can use thought to communicate, control, and wipe away the inaccuracies and errors of human misjudgment for the peaceful serenity of total concentration. All thought is open to the mage: From the refined sensibilities of human philosophy to the feral instincts of animals. Any thinking process can be comprehended and manipulated with sufficient skill.
Unlike the orderly Pattern Spheres, Mind magic tends to be a bit more "fuzzy" in its capabilities. An initiate can often perform tasks similar to what a more experienced mage could do, but not as well or with as much precision or variety. However, Mind constructs do seem to take on specific "thought objects." In some cases, a Mind magician can influence a particular concept just like a Pattern Sphere might be used to manipulate a material object.
To utilize the Archspheres of Mind, the mage has first to perfect the no-mind technique. Afterwards, he studies the ephemeral Patterns of Mind and independent thought systems, by thinking and not-thinking at the same time.
Mages with experience in Mind seem to be in a constant, meditative state. They tend to view the world with laser-focus intensity that penetrates illusions to reach their deeper truth. On occasion, they react to thought before they are actually spoken, reading reactions of people in a single glance or form intricately constructed chains of logic on a moment's notice.
Energies associated with Mind tend to be white or blue in color.
While Mind is powerful, its effects never materialize in the physical world without the use of auxiliary Spheres. Offensive Mind effects (those that seek to influence or harm another's mind) base their difficulties on the target's Willpower Trait instead of the vulgar or coincidental spectrum. If the target is forced to do something against its nature, like committing suicide, the attempt becomes more difficult. Especially willful people might use their willpower later to resist the command.
For attacks against multiple targets, the difficulty for a Mind-based Effect depends upon the usual coincidental, vulgar, or vulgar with witnesses situations. Such Mind-based Effects are generally coincidental, although especially flamboyant feats might be vulgar instead.
Below is a short representation how the Sphere of Mind is interpreted by the various magickal factions within the World of Darkness.
- Akashic Brotherhood: The Akashics regard Mind as "Santana" (lit. "Stream"). To properly utilize it, it is necessary to practice "Mushin", the state of no-Mind. In this state, egoistical notions are shut down and the mind becomes open to receive its surroundings, which allows the Akashic to act without hindrance. Once the illusion of ego disperses, the Akashic can receive the flow of other minds into himself or flow forward himself.
- Celestial Chorus: Choristers believe that all minds spring from the Mind of the One, who first thought the world into existence. By focusing on the creative impulses that once inspired the Divine to create, the Choristers use their abilities to break the barriers between people and showing them their common origins in the mind of the One. Others view this as sacrilegious and as assuming the mantle of the One for oneself. For this reason, most mages of the Celestial Chorus take great care to avoid hubris or arrogance when using Mind.
- Cult of Ecstasy: The Cult of Ecstasy speaks of Mind as the "Illusion of Self" and associate it with "Love" among the Nine Sacred Passions. Ecstatics hold that the thoughts of one influence the thoughts of all. Through unity in body and mind, the notion of a self vanishes and the mage becomes a part of everyone's thought and gains access to the thoughts of everyone. Other Ecstatics use extreme pain to sever themselves from their bodies, fleeing into the pure realm of thought.
- Dreamspeakers: Dreamspeakers usually tend to use Life and Mind in tandem, seeing no real difference between the two forces. The only exception to this is the magic that affects dreams. Dreamspeakers usually use Mind to gather information during their dreams, and ward the dreams of their communities from predatory supernaturals.
- Euthanatoi: The Euthanatoi interpret Mind as "Manas", the part of the divine that travels along the Wheel of Ages in order to understand itself, learn through many lives and carrying these lessons to its next incarnation. Mind is seen as the way through which each mage can see the obligations of his current incarnations in order to fulfill his dharma and reunite, eventually, with the cosmos.
- Order of Hermes: The Order of Hermes call Mind the Ars Mentis, the sphere of pure intellectualization and reason. As a mirror of the Avatar, Mind reflects that self's intent, allowing the mage know himself, then through himself others and through multiple perspectives, the world. Using the mind as a way to cut away deception, Hermetics work with Mind to realize and conceive pure Truth.
- Sons of Ether: The Sons of Ether refer to the study of Mind as the "Noetic Sciences". These sciences draw on a rich fundus of psychology, metaphysics, sociology, political theory and psychic research, meaning that most Etherites have their own pet theories how Mind exactly works. The most popular is the quantum psychic theory, which postulates the existence of psion particles that carry consciousness. All agree, however, that the human mind has the ability to affect the outside world and that its potential could be limitless.
- Verbena: The Verbena revere Mind during Imbolc, during the first days of February. The Verbena seek to arouse the sleeping Earth fro its winter hibernation during this festival. As a festival of light, Mind is likewise associated with light and sight. Verbena usually perceive Mind effects in the form of visual appearances and often deal with raw passions that have deeper roots than intellectualisms.
- Virtual Adepts: The Virtual Adepts have only begun to incorporate Mind into their cosmology after their defection from the Technocratic Union. Since then, the Adepts have become particularly interested in how Mind affect the input of information. Others use it to "surf" through other people's dreams, create computer viruses for the brain or create neurolinguistic translation methods. Some have begun to use Mind rotes to allow certain Sleepers to see behind the lies wrought by the Technocracy (sometimes even triggering an Awakening).
- Ahl-i-Batin: The Ahl-i-Batin see Life connected to Keter. The Batini have worked with Mind long before the concept dawned to most other Crafts, incorporating "patterning" into their interactions with others in order to solicit them into actions that benefitted the Batini without so much as a carefully inflected word or an arched eyebrow. Mind is seen as one of the more important Spheres to achieve Unity, since the total unity of all means also a unity of minds.
- Hem-ka Sobk: The minds of the Hem-Ka Sobk are more in tune with those of reptiles and some Ahl-i-Batin who observed them claimed that the Sunu seemed to be disconnected and bound with some greater power the Hem-Ka refer to as Sobk. The Hem-Ka Sobk practice a meditation style to utilize Mind during which they enter a emotionless calm, guided by the will of Sobk.
- Kopa Loei: The Kopa Loei call Mind Uhane'hana (Soul Working). Seeing it as an extension of the Spirit Sphere, most Kopa Loei use these Spheres in tandem. One of its applications is invoking the right of the chiefs to assure obedience.
- Sisters of Hippolyta: The Sisters adopted the practices of Mind during the Middle Ages, seeing connections between the physiological and the psychological well-being of women. Adept Sisters draw these connection even further, establishing links with progeny, nature and themselves, becoming incredibly self-aware.
- Solificati: The Solificati see Mind as a way to gather hidden truths to use in their aim for transcendence, purifying malignant Resonance and balance themselves before their Works. The Solificati use mental experiences to find a way to discover a "Greater Pattern" of humanity. Once they have found this pattern, Mass Ascension and Unity are at hand.
- Templars: The Templars have begun to study Mind since the fall of Montsalvat and the excision of the Cabal of Pure Thought from the Order of Reason, seeking to understand the ways in which their former allies controlled mortal opinions and enhance their covert operation to safeguard the Temple.
- Taftâni: The Taftâni see Mind as Hamestagan - a place that is neither obliged to Asha or Druj. They see belief, thought and understanding as pitiful reflections of Truth, but not as part of Druj. Most see it as the purview of the djinn, who are masters of illusions and deception, and seek to enslave them to turn their arts to the Taftâni's advantage. The Kahin focus on the psychonautical aspect of Mind, traversing the High Umbra and manipulating people's dreams.
- Wu-Keng: Although the Wu-Keng do not ban the study of Mind, it is seen as an ill omen and invites disaster and the antagonism of their demonic overlords. Most refrain from delving into it too deeply.
- Wu Lung: The Wu Lung call Mind Hsin and regard it as a means to attain the right mindset when approaching Heaven and draw upon it to enforce their role as envoys of the Celestial Bureaucracy.
The Technocracy refers to Mind as "Psychodynamics" or Enlightened psychology. Its study is closely attuned to the study of Platonic Ideals, Jungian archetypes and theories put forth by contemporary psychology, as well as the scientific insights gained into the inner workings of the brain.
Technocrats studying Mind usually work with memory enhancements and calculation to sculpt their minds to their fullest potential. Agents of the New World Order are the foremost experts on Mind within the Union, using it to combat dissenters against Control and make the Consensus stable.
Standard Powers Edit
- Sense Thoughts and Emotions: Allows a mage to recognize thought and mood impulses around him.
- Empower Self: Allows a mage to enhance her conscious abilities to improve mental skills.
- Mind Shield: Allows a mage to built a shield around her mind, hiding her Aura.
- Read Surface Thoughts: Allows a mage to skim the contents of another's mind.
- Create Impressions: Allows a mage to determine particular flavours of Resonance an object within one's mind might have.
- Mental Impulse: Send a brief mental impulse (i.e rage, regret) against a target.
- Empathic Bond: Establish a short empathic link between two persons.
- Mental Link: Establishes a link that allows the exchange of ideas or images between two persons.
- Dreamwalk: Allows a mage to control her own mind during her sleep, allowing for lucid dreaming, the creation of a Demesne or even entrance into the Dreaming.
- Project Illusions: Allows a mage to conjure mental images into a target.
- Psychic Blast: Attacks a target's mind with painful thoughts.
- Control Conscious Mind: Allows a mage to invade another's mind.
- Alter Consciousness: Allows a mage to alter one's mind, changing memories and setting up posthypnotic suggestions and commands.
- Astral Projection: Allows a mage to project her own mind away from her physical form into the penumbra of the Astral Reaches.
- Control Subconscious: Allows a mage to rewrite a subject's personality and beliefs totally.
- Untether: Allows a mage to separate her mind from her body for an extended period of time, leaving her body behind.
- Forge Psyche: Allows the mage to create an intelligence out of nowhere (Auxiliary Spheres are needed to anchor this intelligence somewhere).
- Universal Subconscious: The mage can draw on the knowledge accumulated within every mortal creature.
- Reprogram Avatar: Implant images and memories into an Avatar that carry on through its next incarnations.
- Self-Awareness: The mage gains supreme control over her own thought processes.
- One Mind: The Mind Pattern of the mage begins to exist independently of her Life Pattern, allowing her to witness every single mind in existence within the quintessential flow.
^ Level 1
|Sense Thoughts and Emotions||Pg. 175|
|Sense Thoughts and Emotions||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Empower Self||Pg. 175|
|Empower Self||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Mind Shield||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
^ Level 2
|Read Surface Thoughts||Pg. 175|
|Read Surface Thoughts||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Create Impressions||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Mental Impulse||Pg. 175|
|Mental Impulse||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Empathic Bond||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
^ Level 3
|Mental Link||Pg. 175|
|Mental Link||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Dreamwalk||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Project Illusions||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
|Psychic Blast||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 519|
^ Level 4
|Control Conscious Mind||Pg. 175|
|Control Conscious Mind||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 520|
|Alter Consciousness||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 520|
|Astral Projection||Pg. 175|
|Astral Projection||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 520|
^ Level 4
|Control Subconscious||Pg. 175|
|Control Subconscious||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 520|
|Untether Consciousness||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 520|
|Forge Psyche||Pg. 175|
|Forge Psyche||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 520|
^ Level 6
|Relive Past Lives||Masters of the Art||Pg. 71|
|Sense the Universal Mind||Masters of the Art||Pg. 71-72|
^ Level 7
|Universal Subconscious||Masters of the Art||Pg. 72|
|Reprogram Avatar||Masters of the Art||Pg. 72|
^ Level 8
|Self-Awareness||Masters of the Art||Pg. 72|
^ Level 9
|One Mind||Masters of the Art||Pg. 72|
- ↑ Masters of the Art Pg. 75
- ↑ Masters of the Art Pg. 71
- ↑ , p.43
- ↑ Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition Pg. 519
- ↑ , p.55
- ↑ , p.55-56
- ↑ , p.54
- ↑ , p.54
- ↑ , p.59
- ↑ , p.63
- ↑ , p.59
- ↑ , p.54
- ↑ , p.59-60
- ↑ , p.34
- ↑ , p.53, 56
- ↑ , p.70
- ↑ , p.85
- ↑ , p.37
- ↑ , p.100
- ↑ , p.76, 82
- ↑ , p.116
- ↑ , p.134
- ↑ , p.50-51