Mysterium

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Lore masters who hold (or seek) all the keys to all the doors, the Mysterium seeks out knowledge for its own sake. The Mysterium comes from the remains of Alae Draconis (or Dragon’s Wing), the research and development branch of Atlantean society. Now they seek to reclaim the lost lore of the world and remember the lessons of fallen Atlantis.
Given their predisposition for finding knowledge it would be logical to assume that mystagogues and Guardians of the Veil would have a natural animosity to each other, and indeed the two groups have heated debates over the fate of particularly interesting subjects. However, the Mysterium does make a point of making sure querants are worthy of receiving secrets in question, which mollifies the Guardians somewhat. The Mysterium mages are keenly aware that some secrets were hidden for a very good reason. In some cases, the object of the search was not so much ‘lost’ as ‘contained’; even the Lords of Atlantis were faced with powers and creatures they could neither tame nor destroy, and the only answer available was to simply imprison it until such time as a more permanent solution could be discovered. The secrets of the Mysterium aren’t made free to the general public at large. There is usually a price to be paid, more often than not including tests of discretion and loyalty as well as requests for goods and/or services. Knowledge without wisdom is meaningless, and few hold this truth as deeply as the Mysterium.

The Mysterium believes that magic naturally hides itself through fate and human actions. The order calls this phenomenon pancryptia. Pancryptia conceals magic within traditional legendry, ancient artifacts and scientific discoveries. One of the order’s primary missions is to bring this knowledge back to its Supernal source and restore its status as original magical wisdom. Mystagogues separate Supernal “signals” from Fallen “noise” and carefully record the results. In this way, they believe, they can stop the entropic surge of Pancryptia and preserve magical traditions.

Mysterium mages classify the pillars of a just mage society as Gnosis, Tradition and Reason. Gnosis is the realm of intuition, visions and mystical experiences. To many mages, this isn’t much more than a synonym for raw power, for even a simple Knowing spell is an extraordinary vision. Ideally, Gnosis allows mystagogues to use vision quests, meditation and (it is hoped) subtle messages from the Oracles to inspire proper governance. The primacy of tradition is less controversial, but is still hotly debated. Human mortality, Seer deceptions and pancryptia obscure the true origins of Awakened customs. Mysterium mages aren’t too troubled by this, since it’s a tradition ultimately proves itself by its longterm efficacy. The Consilium system is a legitimate tradition because it’s worked for a very long time. Reason balances the other two pillars. Magic is an Art rooted in Mystery, but magic obeys its own internal logic. Magic must be rational, or else it can’t provide the basis for natural laws. If a decision appears to be irrational, it has to be supported by weighty traditions or powerful visions.

The Mysterium believes that secret knowledge is the cornerstone of Awakened existence. Knowledge is an economy, ecology and the source of authority. Mages need to control the dissemination of knowledge. Without universal customs, charismatic, amoral individuals acquire undeserved power. Clear traditions give mages a framework to teach, bargain with and protect each other. Mysterium mages call these ties Guanxi. Guanxi encompasses a relationship in which one person can trade favors with another. Guanxi ensures that no matter the politics of the day, Mysterium mages can operate within the bounds of the protocols. Guanxi within the order takes precedence over Consilium rule.

While magic is indeed the central object of inquiry, the order’s beliefs do not separate this from the nature of all things, Supernal and Fallen. Mages know some of the Mystery, but none of them are omniscient. To cultivate enlightened power, the Wise need to examine the world around them to uncover occult revelations. Contrary to popular stereotype, these projects aren’t just academic exercises. Mystagogues crave experience as well as study. They employ meditation, drugs, ordeals and other rituals to ignite more intuitive, less systematic ways of knowing.

The Mysterium believes that magic naturally hides itself through fate and human actions. The order calls this phenomenon pancryptia. Pancryptia conceals magic within traditional legendry, ancient artifacts and scientific discoveries. One of the order’s primary missions is to bring this knowledge back to its Supernal source and restore its status as original magical wisdom. Mystagogues separate Supernal “signals” from Fallen “noise” and carefully record the results. In this way, they believe, they can stop the entropic surge of Pancryptia and preserve magical traditions.

Mysterium mages classify the pillars of a just mage society as Gnosis, Tradition and Reason. Gnosis is the realm of intuition, visions and mystical experiences. To many mages, this isn’t much more than a synonym for raw power, for even a simple Knowing spell is an extraordinary vision. Ideally, Gnosis allows mystagogues to use vision quests, meditation and (it is hoped) subtle messages from the Oracles to inspire proper governance. The primacy of tradition is less controversial, but is still hotly debated. Human mortality, Seer deceptions and pancryptia obscure the true origins of Awakened customs. Mysterium mages aren’t too troubled by this, since it’s a tradition ultimately proves itself by its longterm efficacy. The Consilium system is a legitimate tradition because it’s worked for a very long time. Reason balances the other two pillars. Magic is an Art rooted in Mystery, but magic obeys its own internal logic. Magic must be rational, or else it can’t provide the basis for natural laws. If a decision appears to be irrational, it has to be supported by weighty traditions or powerful visions.

The Mysterium believes that secret knowledge is the cornerstone of Awakened existence. Knowledge is an economy, ecology and the source of authority. Mages need to control the dissemination of knowledge. Without universal customs, charismatic, amoral individuals acquire undeserved power. Clear traditions give mages a framework to teach, bargain with and protect each other. Mysterium mages call these ties Guanxi. Guanxi encompasses a relationship in which one person can trade favors with another. Guanxi ensures that no matter the politics of the day, Mysterium mages can operate within the bounds of the protocols. Guanxi within the order takes precedence over Consilium rule.

While magic is indeed the central object of inquiry, the order’s beliefs do not separate this from the nature of all things, Supernal and Fallen. Mages know some of the Mystery, but none of them are omniscient. To cultivate enlightened power, the Wise need to examine the world around them to uncover occult revelations. Contrary to popular stereotype, these projects aren’t just academic exercises. Mystagogues crave experience as well as study. They employ meditation, drugs, ordeals and other rituals to ignite more intuitive, less systematic ways of knowing.

Mysterium

Death is only the Beginning fasteraubert