The Detail of my Magic System
In the previous post, I discussed how I am preparing to write a short story about Caelan, my apprentice-wizard-to-be. I thought about the various job choices that Caelan would have in a medieval fantasy world, and I devised a city apprenticeship scheme.
Today, I want to firm up on the details of my magic system. This background is needed before I start writing, because the form the magic will take will affect how the society works.
In the post where I discussed the creation of magic systems, I decide the system I’m going to develop will be based on utilising energy from within the body, drawn out with specific words. The energy from within will have links to a chakra system.
For my own purposes, I need to do some research on the theory of chakras. The following information is based on yogic tradition. I’m drawn to colour meditation based on the chakras, as a method of relaxation. I don’t know that I subscribe wholly to the theory on the energy of chakras, but I do find it interesting and intriguing. I do like the emphasis of Eastern philosophy on treating the body as a whole, and creating balance in your life.
It is said that an energy path runs through the body from the perineum, up the spine, to the top of the head. Kundalini is the Sanskrit word for the energy reservoir that lies at the base of the spine. If the energy path is clear, it can rise through the body.
Chakras are areas of increased energy. The word ‘chakra’ means wheel, and can be imagined as a spinning vortex of energy. If all chakras are fully functioning, the kundalini energy can travel freely up and down the spine. I think these ideas have a lot of potential for being the basis of a magic system. You can see how it would translate into centres of power that a person could learn to release.
Each of the seven main chakras has a specific location in the body, a Sanskrit name, an associated colour, an associated element, and a relation to certain actions and needs. The lower chakras are related to material needs, and become more spiritual as you ascend to the top of the head.
To create a magic system, it makes sense to say that lower chakras are more accessible than higher chakras. The Sanskrit word can be a secret word of power that allows you activate the chakra, when combined with a colour meditation and visualisation of the effect you want to produce. You could have a natural ability involved, where some wizards find it easier than others to access the chakras and improve their talents.
So wizards are ranked based on what chakras they can access. A lower wizard may only reach the first three levels of power with no ability to reach further, and a higher wizard may reach the top levels.
As each chakra relates to an element, it makes sense that in a magic system it should be able to control that element. I think each chakra also needs another physical manifestation of power, relating to the qualities a chakra is linked to.
So with that in mind, I’ve tailored the chakras as follows, for my magic system:
Root Chakra (Muladhara – in Sanskrit)
- Location – base of spine
- Associated colour – red
- Associated element – earth
- Related to – stability, survival, basic needs
- Power manifestation – creation of physical items needed for survival, such as food, cooking implements, shelter, sparks for fires, etc.
Sexual Chakra (Svadhisthana)
- Location – lower abdomen
- Associated colour – orange
- Associated element – water
- Related to – creativity, sexuality, relationships
- Power manifestation – stimulation of artistic impulses, and magical improvement of people’s relationships
Solar Plexus (Manipura)
- Location – diaphragm
- Associated colour – yellow
- Associated element – fire
- Related to – power, will, action
- Power manifestation – provision of a magical energy boost to another person
Heart Centre (Anahata)
- Location – centre of chest
- Associated colour – green
- Associated element – air
- Related to – unconditional love, self-healing, joy
- Power manifestation – provides physical and mental healing to the body
Throat Centre (Visuddha)
- Location – base of throat
- Associated colour – sky blue
- Associated element – ether/space (energy that fills outer space, and bridges the gap between the physical and spiritual worlds)
- Related to – communication, self-expression, truth
- Power manifestation – can compel people to tell the truth
Third Eye Centre (Ajna)
- Location – centre of forehead
- Associated colour – indigo
- Associated element – pure essence/light
- Related to – intuition, wisdom
- Physical manifestation – mind-reading
Crown Centre (Sahasrara)
- Location – top of the head
- Associated colour – violet
- Associated element – boundlessness/inner light/thought
- Related to – spiritual illumination, the bliss state
- Physical manifestation – ability to talk to the Gods
So I have the basis for my magic system. This has also created links to a religious system, because the upper levels of the magic system are spiritual. In terms of a religious system, all I have determined is that the highest level at wizards have the ability to communicate with the Gods. This effectively puts top level wizards in the role of priest – not something I anticipated, as I wasn’t particularly planning on having a specific religious system at this stage. But that’s where my worldbuilding has led me, so I will go with the flow for the time being.
I think I’ve probably done enough groundwork to start writing now, so it may be a while before you get an update on how the story is going. I will pop any updates or further research into additional posts.