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Spirit is one of nine Spheres of magic in Mage: The Ascension. The Dreamspeakers have occupied the Seat of Spirit in the Council of Nine Mystic Traditions since its founding. The Shard Realm of Spirit maps physically to Uranus.
Spirit is the Sphere of the ephemeral stuff that is the building block of the three Umbrae, the realms between the pureness of unbridled Prime and the Patterned World of flesh. Spirit is a homogeneous whole, a sort of conceptual energy given a special form that can mirror or mimic the more mundane Patterns of elements. However, Spirit is much more. It's also the results of emotion, hope, and thought -- the intangible end product of the Mind's musing and shaping. The mage skilled in Spirit can touch the wall that separates potential from material to see beyond.
Spirit is also needed to communicate or suborn Spirits, the inhabitants of these strange realms. These entities are bound by strange rules and customs mage would do very well to learn, and they can be powerful allies or relentless foes.
To utilize the Archspheres of Spirit, the mage has to actually become Ephemera (through Disembodiment or rituals) and manage to return to the world of flesh on his own (although he can be guided by spirits).
Mages with a focus in Spirit have an otherwordly sense, a tendency to murmur to the air, focus on things that aren't there, and hold to unusual taboos. They often indulge in unusual behaviors and sometimes talk to spiritual allies or enemies that nobody else can see.
Energies associated with Spirit tend to be gold, green or black in color.
The Spirit Sphere cannot directly interact with the material world except in conjunction with one of the Pattern Spheres.
- Akashic Brotherhood: The Akashics call Spirit "Shen" and are divided on its position in the Ten Thousand Things. One school of thought believes that Spirits are the reflection of sentient beings upon the All, therefore no different than different states of thought. As a result, every mage carries the spirit realms within himself. The opposing school believes in a Celestial Bureaucracy that has a position for every spirit, which are very much separate beings from the inhabitants of the material world, but are bound by the duties they have within the Bureaucracy. The Akashic Brotherhood acknowledges six realms: Tian (the High Umbra), Maya (the Dreaming), the Yang World, the Material World, the Yin World and Yomi Wan.
- Celestial Chorus: The Chorus understands that spirits are as much children of the One as humans are. They use this connection to bring both together, ensuring cooperation. Some Choristers organize spirits into an angelic (and demonic) hierarchy, cataloguing their powers, duties and preferred ways to be called.
- Cult of Ecstasy: The Cult of Ecstasy refers to Spirit as the "Dreaming" and associate it with "Envy" among the Nine Sacred Passions. To the Ecstatics, Spirit is the emanation of the soul, while the body is the emanation of the self. As a result, when the soul is damaged, spiritual corruption follows. When people dream of cruelty and evil, their dreams creep into reality through Spirit. The same principle works with positive things, so the Cult in general sees the Spirit Worlds as more "true" than the deceptive outward appearance of the Material.
- Dreamspeakers: Dreamspeakers tend to be invested the most into the Spirit Sphere, using it for communication with spirits as well as tending to the local Umbra. Dreamspeakers entreat the spirits using shamanistic notions of their home culture, drawing on time-honored traditions and pacts between both sides for mutual benefit.
- Euthanatoi: The Euthanatoi speak of Spirit as "Cit", the "Consciousness". Consciousness too travels along the Great Wheel, striving towards divinity and reunion. It manifests in an ever-shifting form, as symbols that reflect the primordial truth or as reflections of the minds of the living. Flaws in the Cycle or failure to uphold their dharma transforms spirits into demons.
- Order of Hermes: The Order of Hermes understands Spirit as the Ars Manes (Classical Nomenclature) or Ars Spiritum (medieval Nomenclature). Drawing multiple sources, the Order of Hermes studies the Otherworlds to gain a more founded understanding of his own place within the Tellurian. In time, the mage can become a preeminent force within all realms of reality, a part of everything, yet apart from it enough to stand above and control it.
- Sons of Ether: The Sons of Ether understand Spirit as the study of Etheric and Memetic Dimensions. Etheric Dimensions are the regions behind the Horizon, including the Shard Realms and the True Horizon that separates this world from the Deep Umbra, while Memetic Dimensions include the Sidereal Dimension (the High Umbra) and the Entropic Dimension (the Low Umbra). The Sons of Ether use special "Etherships" for traveling to these realms.
- Verbena: The Verbena celebrate Spirit during Samhain, the last day of October, the time when the barriers between the worlds are especially thin. The Verbena focus on two applications of the Spirit Sphere: The first is honoring the dead and the second is appeasing the spirits of nature, seeking to work together in an harmonious existence.
- Virtual Adepts: The Virtual Adepts have difficulties understanding Spirit as a separate Sphere, instead of an extension of Forces (energy) or Prime (Quintessence). Most of their Spirit applications are used to strengthen their Avatar, while some who have tapped into the more esoteric depths of Spirit have turned to urban primitivism, practicing basically techno-shamanism.
- Ahl-i-Batin: The Ahl-i-Batin see Spirit connected to Hesed. The Ahl-i-Batin place a great deal on self-sufficience and tend to look down on asking spirits for help. Those who do tend to invoke the highly complex denizens of the Astral Reaches, spirits of higher mathematics, kabbalistic theorems and spirits representing alchemical formulas, in order to gain information that cannot be obtained in any other way.
- Hem-Ka Sobk: The Hem-Ka Sobk see Spirit as connected to the nine-parted soul of Egyptian mythology. In their eyes, supernatural beings are creatures whose nine-folded soul has become imbalanced (with the exception of Mummies) and the Hem-Ka Sobk seek to correct these imbalanced beings, even through radical methods like assassination.
- Kopa Loei: The Kopa Loei call Spirit Kahea Noho-loa, the art of "Calling the Eternal". The Kopa Loei have a taboo against forcing a spirit to do something, instead reminding it of obligations and striking mutual beneficial deals.
- Taftâni: The Taftâni call Spirit Menog, the "Invisible Truth", the aspect of Asha that hidden behind the Gauntlet and works in mysterious, not easily observable methods. The Taftâni mainly utilize Spirit through the lens of the Solomonic Code, using it to summon and bind their Djinn servants. They almost never use the other applications of Spirit, like entering the world of spirits themselves, since the techniques of the Code do only work in the material world.
- Wu Lung: The Wu Lung call Spirit "Ching Shen" and it is the purview of the Dragon School. Through Spirit, the Wu Lung communicate with the Celestial Bureaucracy, with their own Avatar and the spirits in the Dark Kingdom of Jade. Members of the Dragon School act as judges within the Middle Kingdom, bringing the verdicts of the August Personage in Jade to the mortal world and enforcing virtue.
The Technocracy speaks of Spirit as Dimensional Science, the study of different dimensions that coexist with our own according to the model provided by Tychoidian Cosmology. Most Conventions shy away from it (first among them Iteration X), leaving the Void Engineers as the ones that work most closely with Dimensional Science.
Standard Powers Edit
- Touch Spirit: The mage can affect small things on the other side of the Gauntlet while remaining in the physical world.
- Manipulate Gauntlet: The mage can slightly thicken or thin the local Gauntlet.
- Pierce Gauntlet: The mage can create a temporary rift within the Gauntlet.
- Step Sideways: The mage can step through smaller rifts within the Gauntlet and enter the Spirit World.
- Rouse And Lull Spirit: The mage can influence spirits, either rousing them to action or lulling them to sleep. It is also possible to harm Spirits with this level.
- Rend and Repair Gauntlet: The mage can rend or repair the Gauntlet, allowing multiple persons to enter it.
- Bind Spirits: The mage can summon or otherwise compel Spirits to fulfill his orders.
- Awaken Ephemera: The mage can cause the creation and the awakening of a new spirit.
- Create Realm: By creating an artificial Gauntlet (a pericarp), the mage can wall off parts of the Umbra to create his own pocket dimensions within the Spirit World.
- Remember the One: The mage can dissolve the Gauntlet between two overlapping Realms.
^ Level 1
|Spirit Senses||Pg. 186|
|Spirit Senses||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 521|
^ Level 2
|Touch Spirit||Pg. 186|
|Touch Spirit||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 521|
|Manipulate Gauntlet||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 521|
^ Level 3
|Pierce Gauntlet||Pg. 186|
|Pierce Gauntlet||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 521|
|Ste Sideways||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 521|
|Rouse And Lull Spirit||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 521|
^ Level 4
|Rend and Repair Gauntlet||Pg. 186|
|Rend Gauntlet/Seal Breach||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 522|
|Bind Spirits||Pg. 186|
|Bind Spirit||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 522|
^ Level 4
|Forge Ephemera||Pg. 187|
|Forge Ephemera||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 522|
|Outward Journey||Pg. 187|
|Break the Dreamshell||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 522|
|Gilgul||Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition||Pg. 522|
^ Level 6
|Awaken Ephemera||Masters of the Art||Pg. 73|
^ Level 7
|Create Realm||Masters of the Art||Pg. 73|
^ Level 8
|Remember the One||Masters of the Art||Pg. 73|
^ Level 9
|Awaken the Avatar||Masters of the Art||Pg. 73|
- ↑ Masters of the Art Pg. 75
- ↑ Masters of the Art Pg. 73
- ↑ , p.43
- ↑ , p.56
- ↑ , p.56
- ↑ , p.55
- ↑ , p.54
- ↑ , p.59
- ↑ , p.64
- ↑ , p.60
- ↑ , p.53-54
- ↑ , p.61
- ↑ , p.38
- ↑ , p.54
- ↑ , p.70
- ↑ , p.76, 81-81
- ↑ , p.130
- ↑ , p.49