Re: Making your mind magical

#1
Let's imagine that if a modern person went to a world where magic existed, they wouldn't immediately be able to connect with magic because their mind was developed in an incompatible way (skepticism, science, whatever).  What kind of book would you read or exercise would you do to try to get your mind attuned to magic?  (Meditation in the "clear your mind" sense does not work, instead you would have to specify a mantra or visualization exercise to meditate upon if you choose meditation.)

Re: Making your mind magical

#2
I believe that simple strain would be enough to attune.

Thinking about it, depending on the settings of how the world is, every bit of everything has some amount of Mana or magic; gradual assimilation of high-tense, situations and general regular confusion with theory and logic of spells and magic of ANY origin should be enough to attune to magic. I suppose more information on the style of magic would be needed before any assumption would be made.

Re: Making your mind magical

#3
Wrote: I believe that simple strain would be enough to attune.

Thinking about it, depending on the settings of how the world is, every bit of everything has some amount of Mana or magic; gradual assimilation of high-tense, situations and general regular confusion with theory and logic of spells and magic of ANY origin should be enough to attune to magic. I suppose more information on the style of magic would be needed before any assumption would be made.

Hmm, ok.  I was picturing a cultivation-like magic system where you need to deliberately restructure your mind to be able to use magic well, but the lowest level of magical attunement could probably be caused by simply trying to fit into the new world, and either learning about magical theory or trying to feel magic with your mind.

Re: Making your mind magical

#4
Any sort of book, or information from magic users would be useful. You say you'd have to 'restructure' your mind, but honestly when you learn anything new you're changing your brain to adapt to a new set of rules.

If you want something specific, I'd say talking to experienced magic users and finding some sort of mentor would be the best way to learn. It's the best way to learn anything, I find.

Re: Making your mind magical

#6
Oh, this is interesting. I'd imagine there's several ways to go about it, but in the psychological aspect, I think just living in an environment where magic is used a bunch would likely work long term. Physically, there's being modified/changed by exposure to mana. 
But, a book. Well, if the reason you resist it is because of pre-established laws, then what about just a magic textbook. Like with magic's laws. If the person can somehow reconcile them with prior knowledge or accept that magic is a thing because it has its own rules - along with seeing an example or two of varying fields of magic being used like a good ol' fireball and then maybe something more obscure like scrying/healing - then they would be able to adapt easier? 

Re: Making your mind magical

#7
Dragorule Wrote: Oh, this is interesting. I'd imagine there's several ways to go about it, but in the psychological aspect, I think just living in an environment where magic is used a bunch would likely work long term. Physically, there's being modified/changed by exposure to mana. 
But, a book. Well, if the reason you resist it is because of pre-established laws, then what about just a magic textbook. Like with magic's laws. If the person can somehow reconcile them with prior knowledge or accept that magic is a thing because it has its own rules - along with seeing an example or two of varying fields of magic being used like a good ol' fireball and then maybe something more obscure like scrying/healing - then they would be able to adapt easier?


The way I've been developing the metaphysics of it is that magic exists in a different dimension from the ones humans can naturally sense.  So as you learn to sense it, you are converting your mental model of the universe from... 4 dimensional to 5 dimensional?  Something like that.  And you start accidentally writing glyphs and speaking tangled-up or in confusing metaphors because your thinking is now in more dimensions than the linear communication you grew up using.

Re: Making your mind magical

#8
sunandshadow Wrote:
Dragorule Wrote: Oh, this is interesting. I'd imagine there's several ways to go about it, but in the psychological aspect, I think just living in an environment where magic is used a bunch would likely work long term. Physically, there's being modified/changed by exposure to mana. 
But, a book. Well, if the reason you resist it is because of pre-established laws, then what about just a magic textbook. Like with magic's laws. If the person can somehow reconcile them with prior knowledge or accept that magic is a thing because it has its own rules - along with seeing an example or two of varying fields of magic being used like a good ol' fireball and then maybe something more obscure like scrying/healing - then they would be able to adapt easier?


The way I've been developing the metaphysics of it is that magic exists in a different dimension from the ones humans can naturally sense.  So as you learn to sense it, you are converting your mental model of the universe from... 4 dimensional to 5 dimensional?  Something like that.  And you start accidentally writing glyphs and speaking tangled-up or in confusing metaphors because your thinking is now in more dimensions than the linear communication you grew up using.


That's pretty cool. So, something like accidentally slipping into another language while having a casual chat or writing? That is a pretty cool idea for magic. Hm, but would the brain really be able to comprehend that? Is that just gonna be a suspension of disbelief (parallel earth deal with it) or are you having some way that helps the brain be rewired. Also, what about a regular bystander who sees magic? Is your world gonna be a 'everyone magic!' or 'shhh it's a secret.' Sounds cool though, sounds like you have it figured out.

Re: Making your mind magical

#10
I think it highly depends on what you’re trying to go for with your magic system. I myself would tend towards the “intuitive sensing”  route normally but it has the issue of being vague and hard to express comprehensibly to the reader beyond “It just works!”
You could go for a Tangible energy you interact with physically, which might rob it of that mystical feel. Usually with some instrument or system to interface with the energy like it was a computer with admin access if you want to make it even slightly mysterious. It’s more speculative physics than fantasy magic really. Your protagonist just needs to be innovative with this one.
You could go the Intuition route which normally has some level of Emotion power and can be common with some superhero stories. They are separate but I count Intuition and Emotion the same since they’re usually played out in the same way. It may be problematic because people feel like “Why you so Emo?” or feel like the power granting is sort of arbitrary and biased towards protagonists. Can I throw fireballs if I stub my toe and curse a lot? Anger = fireball right? Try to look at it from an irreverent perspective and think about if it seems ridiculous.
You could go with Enlightenment which will require some form of comprehension such as a secret language *confetti* or some insight to the hidden nature of our world as a prt of a multiverse. Basically Doctor Strange without the protagonist bias, but then what story isn’t protagonist biased, even of its not in their favour? I get annoyed with this one when the mystic language is literally just an arbitrary language, Eragon was bad but at least they went and said the language is magic because the precursors made it magical (somehow) and so now even speaking it reacts with magic (if you have the talent to interact with magic) like a cheat Game Engine so you don’t have to program manually. Enlightenment is also popular with Lovecraftian Cosmic mysticism themed stuff. Just knowing something is supernatural. The world is an illusion, and there is no spoon.
You could go with Exposure which is radiation gives you powers except with magic so it’s actually believable(irony). This has some merit since the brain can process new stimulation until it figures out patterns and if you lock someone in a room with Magick with some sensory deprivation they will probably figure it out if the living are naturally capable of magic. That the life = magic bias right there.
I’m ignoring inheritance for this thread but you can also gain magic through lottery, specifically by being granted power. Saintly power from the gods, shamanic power granted by spirits, a bargain with devils. Basically you go to some mystic and ask for a loan.
And then you get the Near Death Awakening stuff where you just need to go through some normal mundane trial or ordeal or experience and if you get to the other side *bam* it’s a kind of magic! It’s pretty similar to the exposure or the enlightenment method but it’s a different perspective so it’s works to differentiate itself well. This is the one that works well with supernatural stories and is common with ghost stuff. Just die and you can do magic, even of the dying is temporary.
I actually look to some older fiction where magic was generally “softer” and made less sense when fireball wasn’t some idiotic staple of wizards. A lot of the contemporary interpretations stick to the Four Elements stuff almost exclusively and don’t do much that is mysterious. 
Like a lot of older stories only had weird stuff happened and if it was magical was left as an open question, and did a lot of “well, I know it’s magical, but what does it actually do?” A good power system makes sense like a puzzle, but a good magic system makes sense like a riddle and requires some skewed logic sometimes. I know it’s nonsense but it just makes sense, I swear!

Re: Making your mind magical

#11
Dragorule Wrote:
sunandshadow Wrote:
Dragorule Wrote: Oh, this is interesting. I'd imagine there's several ways to go about it, but in the psychological aspect, I think just living in an environment where magic is used a bunch would likely work long term. Physically, there's being modified/changed by exposure to mana. 
But, a book. Well, if the reason you resist it is because of pre-established laws, then what about just a magic textbook. Like with magic's laws. If the person can somehow reconcile them with prior knowledge or accept that magic is a thing because it has its own rules - along with seeing an example or two of varying fields of magic being used like a good ol' fireball and then maybe something more obscure like scrying/healing - then they would be able to adapt easier?


The way I've been developing the metaphysics of it is that magic exists in a different dimension from the ones humans can naturally sense.  So as you learn to sense it, you are converting your mental model of the universe from... 4 dimensional to 5 dimensional?  Something like that.  And you start accidentally writing glyphs and speaking tangled-up or in confusing metaphors because your thinking is now in more dimensions than the linear communication you grew up using.


That's pretty cool. So, something like accidentally slipping into another language while having a casual chat or writing? That is a pretty cool idea for magic. Hm, but would the brain really be able to comprehend that? Is that just gonna be a suspension of disbelief (parallel earth deal with it) or are you having some way that helps the brain be rewired. Also, what about a regular bystander who sees magic? Is your world gonna be a 'everyone magic!' or 'shhh it's a secret.' Sounds cool though, sounds like you have it figured out.

It's not so much another language as their own language tied in a knot.  It's like a harry potter-verse wizard doing arithmancy, where the numbers move around on the page.  But yeah it's science fiction or fantasy that the brain would be able to gain a dimension of perception like that.  It's not set on Earth, it's a portal fantasy where someone goes to a parallel universe that's actually quite different.  A regular bystander who sees magic might interpret it as something that would happen in a dream, or reality flowing in a rather surreal way.  Looking at a glyph would be a bit mind bending, probably a good exercise for a student but pointless for someone with zero training.  As a cultivator-type world with a historical-ish culture, they have a primary school that generally everyone attends to attempt to learn their reading, writing, and 'rithmetic.  After that they split into vocational schools aimed at different professions, one of which is magic.  Mages are typically terrible at business, diplomacy, and practical things, so a lot of people don't want their children to study that, but instead to study history, law, higher math, or a specific family trade.

What I don't have figured out is how the villages don't get regularly trashed by mage-warriors or magical monsters.  Also, I don't have much of a plot idea besides "person from our world is isekaid but finds the process of learning magic really mind-bending."

Re: Making your mind magical

#12
sunandshadow Wrote:
Dragorule Wrote:
sunandshadow Wrote:
Dragorule Wrote: Oh, this is interesting. I'd imagine there's several ways to go about it, but in the psychological aspect, I think just living in an environment where magic is used a bunch would likely work long term. Physically, there's being modified/changed by exposure to mana. 
But, a book. Well, if the reason you resist it is because of pre-established laws, then what about just a magic textbook. Like with magic's laws. If the person can somehow reconcile them with prior knowledge or accept that magic is a thing because it has its own rules - along with seeing an example or two of varying fields of magic being used like a good ol' fireball and then maybe something more obscure like scrying/healing - then they would be able to adapt easier?


The way I've been developing the metaphysics of it is that magic exists in a different dimension from the ones humans can naturally sense.  So as you learn to sense it, you are converting your mental model of the universe from... 4 dimensional to 5 dimensional?  Something like that.  And you start accidentally writing glyphs and speaking tangled-up or in confusing metaphors because your thinking is now in more dimensions than the linear communication you grew up using.


That's pretty cool. So, something like accidentally slipping into another language while having a casual chat or writing? That is a pretty cool idea for magic. Hm, but would the brain really be able to comprehend that? Is that just gonna be a suspension of disbelief (parallel earth deal with it) or are you having some way that helps the brain be rewired. Also, what about a regular bystander who sees magic? Is your world gonna be a 'everyone magic!' or 'shhh it's a secret.' Sounds cool though, sounds like you have it figured out.

It's not so much another language as their own language tied in a knot.  It's like a harry potter-verse wizard doing arithmancy, where the numbers move around on the page.  But yeah it's science fiction or fantasy that the brain would be able to gain a dimension of perception like that.  It's not set on Earth, it's a portal fantasy where someone goes to a parallel universe that's actually quite different.  A regular bystander who sees magic might interpret it as something that would happen in a dream, or reality flowing in a rather surreal way.  Looking at a glyph would be a bit mind bending, probably a good exercise for a student but pointless for someone with zero training.  As a cultivator-type world with a historical-ish culture, they have a primary school that generally everyone attends to attempt to learn their reading, writing, and 'rithmetic.  After that they split into vocational schools aimed at different professions, one of which is magic.  Mages are typically terrible at business, diplomacy, and practical things, so a lot of people don't want their children to study that, but instead to study history, law, higher math, or a specific family trade.

What I don't have figured out is how the villages don't get regularly trashed by mage-warriors or magical monsters.  Also, I don't have much of a plot idea besides "person from our world is isekaid but finds the process of learning magic really mind-bending."


Hmm, I think you got what you need so far...as for the villages. Well, I can come up with a couple ideas of the top of my head, but Idk if any are good. Could use a combo.
1. Villages are like 'farms.' Factions own villages and take care of them in exchange for having exclusive use of people in them and thus producing more soldiers or members for said faction.
2. Moral obligation. Like Harry Potter, have some police that y'know polices them and helps out. Maybe villagers come back to stay for fun or something.
3. For monsters, could make it that in order to create a more secure environment a predecessor made a barrier to keep monsters out and they live in said barriers, or the monsters are on isolated continent/half of world. Could have them seperated into overlapping mirror world where you go to practice stronger magics and fight monsters for practice/materials. Could have monsters extinct outside of captivity or super rare and again, like Harry Potter, have cleanups of them and zoos or whatever. Lots of ways here.

Then, as for plot ideas. You don't have to. Depends. Can make him OP and then have a slice of life, or can introduce some idk rando antagonist that he may/may not be destined to defeat. Could also have plot twist like it's actually his friend/love interest that is main character and make it so he's a support character doing idk whatever you want, alchemy, enchanting, could even just be another battle mage. Heck, you could make the "MC" who has to defeat the main villain have to do it uniquely, like having to enchant and fix a special artifact and he has to protect said character as bodyguard. Really anything you want. This took me like 3 mins to type and basically zero to come up with. Sure, most of it is cliche, but you know there's some ideas. 
Basically, don't feel rushed to write it. Try to plan it out if you're not sure. As long as you haven't actually published any chapters, you got all the time in the world.