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Mnesis, also called the Memory by the Mokolé, is a trait possessed only by these werereptiles - one of the surviving shapeshifter races of the Classic World of Darkness. It consists in accessing the Mokolé's ancestors memory.
The Mokolé see themselves as the Memory of Gaia, and they fulfill this duty through the usage of Mnesis. This is a very powerful ability, since the Mokolé exist since the Age of Kings and thus a modern Mokolé, if her Mnesis is strong enough, can withdraw knowledge from a past millions of years away from the present.
The user must enter a trance-like state, and focus in the memory she wants to recall. This task is not free of risk - since there are dangerous things buried in the depths of this ancient race's memory, creatures which are better that remain forgotten. There is also another danger, subtler but even more hazardous: the past looks often better than the present. Too often these days; and so, there are Mokolé who end up wasting their time in an eternal contemplation of a time that Was, instead of actually helping to preserve Gaia's memory, or recovering lost knowledge from other Mokolé, any other Changing Breeds or even from extinct brothers, through dangerous and glorious quests in the Deep Umbra.
This is the way Mokolé acquire their Archid form, similarly to the First Change of the Garou. However, unlike these, the werelizards dream of a form of a creature that never existed: in a mixture of different memories and their own imagination, they define how they will look when in their war form.
It is important to note that Mokolé can only rememer things an ancestor might have seen or done, so those memories usually differ between the four streams - and it may even happen that the racial memory is limited up to the history of a small territory, since clutches are mostly sedentarian. This is the reason why the so called Wanderers are so valuable between the lizard people: they are Mokolé who travel having contact with different clutches everywhere, sharing memories between their kind and even mating with the local Kin, avoiding inbreeding and renewing the knowledge of the clutch. If possible, the Rite of Anamnesis, described below, is used for this purpose.
Mnesis as a Background Edit
Mnesis is the Memory - the racial memory that goes back to the birth of the Dragon Breed. This Background determine how far back a Mokolé may remember on a Mnesis quest.
- A century or so
- A millennium or so
- The Impergium and the beginning of the human civilization
- Up until the Last Times (which ironically are what Garou call "First Times")
- The time of the Lizard Kings
Related Rites Edit
•Burn the Library - (Level 4) This rite erases memories. It is named for the day when the Library of Alexandria burned, and two Mokolé were the only ones left with its knowledge. The ritemaster names the memories that will be destroyed and then speaks Unmaking Words, which are perilous to hear. The Words will then seek out the memories and destroy them. It may be used to erase the own memories, but a failure in the use of this rite may erase the knowledge of how to perform it, or even erasing all his knowledge.
•Rite of Anamnesis - (Level 5) Allows a Mokolé to communicate Mnesis to another directly; the Mokolé who wishes to do so may pass visual impressions, feelingsand thoughts. The communion is imperfect however. The subject and the remembrancer must share an hallucinogen plant, and then the remembrancer focuses his will against the subject's. If the rite is performed multiple times on the same person it results in a person with a vast amount of Mnesis, which can lead the person to madness if his will is not strong enough. The memories of lost clutches and bloodlines have been saved this way; the Mnesis given this way may be passed normally to the descendants of the recipient as with any other Mnesis.
•Rite of the Eidolon - (Level 5)
•Rite of Lost Dreams - (Level 5)