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Immortality and Legacies or Am I a Lich and if so what's your Problem?

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  • Immortality and Legacies or Am I a Lich and if so what's your Problem?

    I have a hard time wrapping my head around the problem awakened society seems to have with the concept of immortality. I realize that Death is supposed to be a vital part of the CoD, an inevitable end that comes for everyone. And in a certain way that's true, even Archmasters (who don't age iirc) can be killed, allthough it is very hard to do so. Heck even Ascended beings can be dethroned (though I'm less sure wether they can ever be destroyed completly). So death is allways in some form an option. But ageing is something the awakened can handle.... it's just that somehow this seems to be seen as a bad thing?

    Now I can understand why people are upset about the methods employed by the tremere or a bodysnatching mage. Sure. But ghostmages, Morpheans etc don't harm anyone by the virtue of their existence, would they really be considered left handed by definition. Why? Or lets take a look at legacies. Sure the Tremere give them a bad name, but why shouldn't a Life centered Legacy be unable to produce an attainment that prevents aging. There were allready Legacies that slowed it down (Perfect Sovereign in 1e), why not just stop it? That would be what, a perfecting practice of life? Normal spells can be dispelled, but it's very hard to do the same for Legacy attainments. Build a legacy attainment that indefinitly stops your ageing. It probably would be a 4th attainment or so, but you have all your natural lifespan to work toward it. Would such a legacy really be considered left handed? Especially since a legacy around mastering the body like this probably could age again if they wanted to. And doesn't eat souls or babies?

    So what is the problem with an approach to immortality that in of itself doesn't hurt anyone? Does it speak volumes about the fear of death of the practioner? Yeah, maybe. But afaik mages who have other issues aren't declared left handed because of it unless these issues cause serious problems.

  • Ashenrogue
    replied
    Originally posted by Dusksage View Post

    All things considered, this has been a very fruitful argument. And while I still disagree with the point you're trying to make @Ashenrouge I feel that this may ultimately come down to a difference in philosophy. Which, honestly, like WHW said means this conversation alone will make great fodder for in game character discussions.

    I'll rest my belief and reasoning on this: Is anything forced ever really a good thing? Can anyone truly say that they have the right to make the decision for how things should be and follow through with that decision with incredible power & influence when other individual's lives are on the line? Especially when this decision is one born of profound self-interest? I would say that forcing a decision upon another human being can only be a necessary evil, something done when the needs of society or the world are greater and something that should only be done sparingly or out of desperation. Never for a single individual's happiness. Even if that single individual is yourself.

    But then again, I would probably be the Libertine Alchemist if this was an in game conversation. Trying to say that all you're really doing is passing on the Lead Coin to the next generation without their consent rather than paying it to free yourself from worldly suffering and want. That if you really wanted to give your future self the choice to continue on your life's work then why not make a Grimoire or Daimonomicon and just Fate 5 that to eventually be discovered by your future incarnation. Let them wonder and find inspiration form the Wise who blazed a path through the Lie before them. Give them a choice without the burden of a whole other life they never lived.
    Yeah, I think this is one of those things we're just not going to see eye to eye on. I just don't see this as forcing something on someone else. You've made the conscious decision to force your own rebirth. The person who will inherit your memories isn't some stranger, it's still just you, albeit a you who has forgotten he made that choice. I can see why you might come to your conclusion it's just not one I agree with. That said, this goes to show how Acts of Hubris might get out of hand when one party sees something as totally evil while another party sees it as perfectly justifiable.

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  • Dusksage
    replied
    Originally posted by WHW View Post
    This sounds like a good material for a character, PC or NPC.
    All things considered, this has been a very fruitful argument. And while I still disagree with the point you're trying to make @Ashenrouge I feel that this may ultimately come down to a difference in philosophy. Which, honestly, like WHW said means this conversation alone will make great fodder for in game character discussions.

    I'll rest my belief and reasoning on this: Is anything forced ever really a good thing? Can anyone truly say that they have the right to make the decision for how things should be and follow through with that decision with incredible power & influence when other individual's lives are on the line? Especially when this decision is one born of profound self-interest? I would say that forcing a decision upon another human being can only be a necessary evil, something done when the needs of society or the world are greater and something that should only be done sparingly or out of desperation. Never for a single individual's happiness. Even if that single individual is yourself.

    But then again, I would probably be the Libertine Alchemist if this was an in game conversation. Trying to say that all you're really doing is passing on the Lead Coin to the next generation without their consent rather than paying it to free yourself from worldly suffering and want. That if you really wanted to give your future self the choice to continue on your life's work then why not make a Grimoire or Daimonomicon and just Fate 5 that to eventually be discovered by your future incarnation. Let them wonder and find inspiration form the Wise who blazed a path through the Lie before them. Give them a choice without the burden of a whole other life they never lived.
    Last edited by Dusksage; 03-12-2017, 04:13 PM. Reason: Spellcheck

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  • Ashenrogue
    replied
    Originally posted by Dusksage View Post
    If that were true then that would be fine (given one was willing to gloss over the implications about conflicting identities and the existential horror of identity.)

    But the spell is called False Reincarnation, not True Reincarnation. If a Mage can truly control how they reincarnate (if they even reincarnate) then is it right for them to decide who they will be in their next life? Especially if that person had dreams and aspirations beyond their past life's own worldly ambitions? And if they can't truly control how they reincarnate without Imperial Practices then what does that say about the life you forever altered just because you feared dying? Because you wanted your ambitions to pass on despite what the people of the future desires for themselves?

    This kind of logic is why Litchs are considered primarily Left-Handed. The desire to persist beyond death is increadably appealing but it's not a path to Wisdom, because on some level it's a deeply selfish one that lends the survival of the self to be superior to all other factors. And pared with a Mage's increadable power and very human flaws it can lead to some truly horrific tragedies. One of which, I will still argue, could be binding a future incarnation to the ghost of a dead Mage.
    It might be called False Reincarnation but there's not really anything false about its effects. It says what it does, and there's nothing wrong with those described effects. If it was meant to be a body snatch then the person who wrote it needs to detail it as such, but as written it's fine. If anything, the spell described should be called Forced Reincarnation.

    And yes, I see no problem with them deciding who they are in their next life. And it isn't like they lose anything from they learned/gained from their new life before regaining their memories anyways. If they have dreams and aspirations before, they'll don't just lose that. They might make an informed decision about whether or not those particular aspirations still mean that much to them but that is normal. People are shaped by their experiences, and just because you suddenly recall experiences that you had previously forgotten doesn't devalue what you experienced before that point. It's like someone who has been stricken with amnesia suddenly remembering everything they had forgotten. Sure, they now have a lot more experience to pull from, but the time that they spent without their memories doesn't go away, it just adds on to who they are.

    Magic generally does what you will it to do, barring paradox. If you can't control how it works without Archmastery and try to make a spell that does it then the spell will fail because you can't do that. If this spell isn't valid it simply won't work, and thus the whole discussion becomes moot. If it does work, then they can control it up to a point and it will work as the spell describes. So either the spell works as detailed, allowing you to reincarnate yourself after death, and use Fate to guide your Dedicated Tool/memories back to you, or the spell doesn't work. It's one or the other, and neither result is inherently evil.

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  • WHW
    replied
    This sounds like a good material for a character, PC or NPC.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dusksage
    replied
    If that were true then that would be fine (given one was willing to gloss over the implications about conflicting identities and the existential horror of identity.)

    But the spell is called False Reincarnation, not True Reincarnation. If a Mage can truly control how they reincarnate (if they even reincarnate) then is it right for them to decide who they will be in their next life? Especially if that person had dreams and aspirations beyond their past life's own worldly ambitions? And if they can't truly control how they reincarnate without Imperial Practices then what does that say about the life you forever altered just because you feared dying? Because you wanted your ambitions to pass on despite what the people of the future desires for themselves?

    This kind of logic is why Litchs are considered primarily Left-Handed. The desire to persist beyond death is increadably appealing but it's not a path to Wisdom, because on some level it's a deeply selfish one that lends the survival of the self to be superior to all other factors. And pared with a Mage's increadable power and very human flaws it can lead to some truly horrific tragedies. One of which, I will still argue, could be binding a future incarnation to the ghost of a dead Mage.
    Last edited by Dusksage; 03-12-2017, 09:43 AM. Reason: Polish

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  • Ashenrogue
    replied
    Originally posted by Dusksage View Post
    I would argue the devil is in the details.

    If the Mage had the determination to imprint their memories onto the newborn immediately and had to suffer through growth and development all over again then it could be argued that the infant was never really a person and therefore not body snatching.

    But to have a person uniquely different from the Mage who cast the spell grow up with a fate they can't control to awaken and immediately gain the memories of some asshole while retaining their own memories, creating an instant identity crisis and potentially scaring them for life. That...that is just downright evil to me. Because how is that any different from doing that to just some poor random person on the street? Your still robbing someone of the chance for personal Awakening and then brainwashing them to suddenly have all of your memories and desires.
    Like you said, the devils in the details, and going by the spell, the person was always you. Sure, you didn't know it was you when you were growing up, but as soon as you take hold of your Dedicated Tool you know what's what. Will it be a little shocking? Probably at first, but I don't see it as evil. This isn't some foreign entity taking claim of your mind and you would know it, this was more you regaining something you'd previously lost.

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  • Dusksage
    replied
    I would argue the devil is in the details.

    If the Mage had the determination to imprint their memories onto the newborn immediately and had to suffer through growth and development all over again then it could be argued that the infant was never really a person and therefore not body snatching.

    But to have a person uniquely different from the Mage who cast the spell grow up with a fate they can't control to awaken and immediately gain the memories of some asshole while retaining their own memories, creating an instant identity crisis and potentially scaring them for life. That...that is just downright evil to me. Because how is that any different from doing that to just some poor random person on the street? Your still robbing someone of the chance for personal Awakening and then brainwashing them to suddenly have all of your memories and desires.

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  • Ashenrogue
    replied
    Originally posted by Dusksage View Post


    Non-evil? Non-inhuman?!?

    This is the god damn textbook definition of Hubris!
    Well, it is pretty much the definition of hubris but I wouldn't really call it evil. It isn't like you're body snatching here, not quite anyways.

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  • Dusksage
    replied
    Originally posted by RBAWintrow View Post
    You could do something like:

    False Reincarnation
    (Fate 5, Mind 5)
    Practice: Making
    Primary Factor: Duration
    Suggested Rote Skills: Academics, Persuasion, Occult

    Upon death you reincarnate as nearby as possible as a newborn with a Fate to Awaken and regain your memories.
    Contact with your Dedicated Tool triggers this Fate.
    This spell may only be used on the caster.

    +2 Reach: The spell's Duration is Lasting.

    Inspired by the "Reborn" from Immortals (page 135) and Cymbeline/Cxaxa Qherephis from Reign of the Exarchs (page 40).

    Heavy on the needed Arcana (two masteries and Gnosis 6). But if you're looking for non-evil, non-inhuman sort-of immortality this might be an option.
    It won't come up in a game though. When have you had the time to wait for your reincarnation to mature and awaken in a game? That's one hell of a time-skip.
    Still, it might give a character peace of mind knowing death is not the end, only an inconvenience.

    Non-evil? Non-inhuman?!?

    This is the god damn textbook definition of Hubris!

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  • Omegaphallic
    replied
    I suppose, but I think it would be rare and that's the kind of Mage who gets themselves killed or worse early on.

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  • Satchel
    replied
    Originally posted by EW-Matias View Post
    Oh, and dispelling it is not?
    When "Only a complete fool of a mage doesn't pry at another mage's work with the supernatural equivalent of an extended taste-test" is presented as a contrast to "Mages know that for some reason dispelling a mage's spells without intent to murder them is rude," the problem is not the relative politeness of dispelling an unknown spell as a member of a supernatural species known for probing the limits of advisability and acceptability as they neglect the maintenance of their good sense versus consuming the intimate details of another member of said species's handiwork.

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  • EW-Matias
    replied
    Originally posted by Satchel View Post
    Which costs Willpower and is invasive and rude.
    Oh, and dispelling it is not?

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  • nofather
    replied
    Originally posted by Satchel View Post
    Which costs Willpower and is invasive and rude.
    And triggers Peripheral Mage Sight, so it's not exactly a subtle invasion of privacy either.

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  • Satchel
    replied
    Originally posted by Omegaphallic View Post
    That not niave Obrimos, that's complete fool of an Obrimos, because even a niave Obrimos is going to use mage sight and try and see what the spell that person cast on themselves does.
    Which costs Willpower and is invasive and rude.

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