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What Happens To The Mage's Soul After Death?

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  • What Happens To The Mage's Soul After Death?

    Well, it's in the title. What happens to an Awakened's soul after death? Do they go to the Underworld/ Shadowlands while their Avatars go for reincarnation, or something else? I haven't opened the books in a while but I don't remember where to read about this, so please, helpeth thy comrade.

  • #2
    Different traditions have different views, through it seems like they go through reincarnation.
    Last edited by Konradleijon; 12-05-2020, 09:59 AM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Konradleijon View Post
      Different traditions have different views, through it seems like they reincarnation
      Pretty much this

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      • #4
        Avatars definitely reincarnate. But souls? Who knows? There's no guarantee they even exist. If they do, do they become ghosts? Maybe. Or maybe ghosts are some sort of residue, a copy of sorts that's made under very specific circumstances that include a person's death. And you don't always get a ghost when a person dies.

        Then there's the matter of a ghost's Transcendence: we don't know what comes next for them if they manage to escape the Shadowlands without succumbing to Oblivion. Is Transcendence merely another kind of Oblivion? Do they ascend to some sort of heaven that's beyond even a Mage's grasp? Do they reincarnate?

        Basically, a long-winded way of saying that no one knows.


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        • #5
          Since so many things are dependent on paradigm, do Technocrats have souls?

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          • #6
            I dont know if this helps, but in the Song of Shadows Dharma book, one of the npc mentors is a former Go Kamisori Gama Ninja Mage, who is assassinated, goes to Yomi and then returns as a Kuei-jin to kill his assassin. So it's likely that Mages can return as Wraiths or Kuei-jin.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Accelerator View Post
              Since so many things are dependent on paradigm, do Technocrats have souls?
              Yep, there are technocrats that remember being questing knights during the crusades and stuff.

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              • #8
                Not much depends on paradigm. Mages souls can and will be reborn (just remember Nefandi and victims of Gilgul).
                Mages cannot become ghosts (at least it was said in Euthanatos book) without Mind (astral form) / Spirit (ghoust form) spheres.
                Nobody knows WHERE they go. They just reincarnate.

                Originally posted by hachiman View Post
                one of the npc mentors is a former Go Kamisori Gama Ninja Mage, who is assassinated, goes to Yomi and then returns as a Kuei-jin to kill his assassin.
                As far as I remember, the "east vampires" were heroes in the past who reincarnate and doomed to some kind of punishment because of something in the past.
                I think this is a rare event, more related to Kuei-jin.
                Last edited by Alphari; 12-05-2020, 11:54 AM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Alphari View Post
                  Not much depends on paradigm. Mages souls can and will be reborn (just remember Nefandi and victims of Gilgul).
                  .
                  Do the mage's soul reincarnate, or the Avatar reincarnates bringing memories of its past life? I thought it was the later.

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                  • #10
                    It's the latter. Though whether the Avatar is part of the soul is an open question.


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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by valismedsen View Post
                      thought it was the later.
                      Both. The avatar has some independence. However, it is possible to remember past-lifes even without it.

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                      • #12
                        Also, the question isn't whether or not a technocrat has a soul. The question is whether or not a technocrat believes she has a soul. Mage says remarkably little about what is actually true concerning the soul.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Alphari View Post
                          Both. The avatar has some independence. However, it is possible to remember past-lifes even without it.
                          That's debatable. Can you confirm that the people who remember past lives aren't remembering them because of a sleeping avatar? (shapeshifters are a special case, because they have their own metaphysics.)


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                          • #14
                            Like most things in Mage, the answer to this is a matter of paradigm. Both the paradigm of the Awakened and the paradigm of the real person interested.

                            Within Mage itself there is a great deal of curiosity and uncertainty but my earlier statement aside I’ll try to offer some answers which I hope will be helpful.

                            The Avatar seems to be an element of the human soul which is either attached to it or is one part of the gestalt nature of the soul, like an organelle within a cell. We have enough evidence to reasonably conclude that avatars reincarnate and cycle through many Awakened (however perception of this often requires an appropriate paradigm). However, the transmigration and reincarnation of the avatar does not answer the entire question of the fate of the awakened’s soul.

                            If the soul is not entirely the avatar, which seems likely to be the case, we can first examine possibilities through looking towards Wraith. There it’s discussed that people with strong attachments to life and memories of the living world can persist as wraiths and with enough luck and willpower even do so lucidly. Given that Awakened can produce wraiths after death but the avatar continue to migrate, we can say then that the part of the Awakened which would remain as a wraith is distinct from the avatar as a representative of the human soul.

                            The wraith is capable of Oblivion or Transcendence or seeking residence along the Far Shores. Any one of these could serve as afterlives, nirvana, heaven, hell, or reincarnation depending on the perspective of the individual and given the mysteries involved.

                            However wraiths are not the whole of the potential afterlife I think. Given that a small fraction of humans leave wraiths and fewer of those are conscious and all of them are tied to the living world through strong psychic links, it seems unlikely to me that the is the whole of the afterlife.

                            As to what else there is? This is one of the mysteries that the WoD leaves and a reason why I say it comes down to a matter of personal paradigm. Any individual can say that there is ultimately something or nothing after death in the WoD and if that’s meaningful to them and their table, that’s valid.

                            However, I’m making this post so I should probably posit my own thoughts on the matter.

                            I think a great strength of the WoD’s treatment of death is it’s stance on the mystery. I think leaving what comes after death as the great mystery is a valuable thing. An Awakened’s paradigm dictates what they imagine for themselves after death and perhaps it dictates what they find. Perhaps some Awakened who are thought dead have actually become spirits in a relevant Horizon Realm. Or perhaps they have reentered the cycle of reincarnation. Perhaps they have ceased to be. Perhaps they have gone to the One.

                            It may be ultimately impossible to say because paradigm and perspective are the lenses that every individual will see reality through and thus they’ll see it a different way. But I personally like to keep the mystery alive with wisps of suggestion and allusion. Perhaps a Verbena finds themselves receiving visions of Asgard before their death and when they die they are not found within any known Far Shore or Horizon Realm... yet any divinations on the matter dictate they’ve reached their destination. Perhaps the Progenitor who has accepted that they will cease to be after death, once they’ve died, cannot be reached through mystical effort - spirits summoned may take on the Progenitor’s identity but the true spirit, if there is such a thing, has vanished. I perhaps in this one can demonstrate a mystery within the World of Darkness, that one cannot look at Horizon Realms and Farshores as all the mundane other worlds of our (in)finite reality. Such things are great Mysteries.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
                              Can you confirm that the people who remember past lives aren't remembering them because of a sleeping avatar?
                              Do you want to say that people do not remember their past life due to the fact that their Avatar is asleep and this blocks their memories? I did not say that. I don't think it (avatar) actively suppresses memories.

                              Fairies and werewolves can reincarnate. Fairies remember their lives, werewolves (as far as I remember) do not.
                              Kuei-jin - I remember they have some discipline (or something else) to see future and past. They seem to be able to receive these visions while they sleep, or am I wrong? After all, they somehow had to understand who they were and what they had lost? I mean, they had a legend that they were Heroes and had some important place in this world.
                              There is also path of karma that allows our undead friends to see past lives and possible future for someone.

                              We have evidence that Avatar is not most important part for reincarnation. However, avatar is active enough to remember and share some information.
                              I would say that avatar lives separately from mage.
                              Last edited by Alphari; 12-05-2020, 03:17 PM.

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