Monday, August 28, 2006

On Shamanism and Character Identification

I posted a couple of interesting thoughts on the LRPGSW this weekend. The first is a paper, "On Shamanism and Magical Systems" which is a World Weavers tinkerings with ideas about magic. Looking at the history of Norse Shamanism and comparing that Necromancy and Witchcraft I surmise that magic systems should have the ability to overlap Spells/Powers, as there is commonality between the various magical groups.

The Paper can be found in the LRPGSW > Files > Essays section.

The second is a post I sent in this morning in response to the ineffable Jarod.

Interesting. Notice how intensely I identify with the Character? My phraseology goes from, "He found..." to "I absorbed..." ... interesting. I think this little verbal twist is extremely telling. But what does it say about Player-Character identification? In some sense, I'm going out on a limb here, I believe it shows that I consider my Characters in some way to be actual extensions of myself. The myths that are created with them become internal mythos of my own soul and I "believe" in them at some deep level, to the same degree, or perhaps more, than I "believe" (not literally, figuratively, if I must say so) in myths such as the Norse Myths i'm reading about lately. In other words, somehow, I think of my Characters adventures as events that have actuality for me and so when I think of the Character I literally do think in terms of "I did ...", not "He did..." though I usually try to be careful not to phrase it as "I did..." because it would, and does, sound strange. Nevertheless, that's the truth of the matter. So I now speculate that perhaps Role Playing, at some level, can in some way, at some level, be thought of as a sort of astral projection, or shamanistic event where "real" things, at some level, are Actually happening, and not just games, but something a little bit more? Or are all games this way and the imagination links everything we imagine up this way, at some level? Yet, even if that is true, I'm thinking that Role Playing Games form deeper and more profound impressions on our minds, and have a deeper and more lasting effect on our psyches. If so, then what responsibility does that imply for World Weaving?

That last question, I suppose, is a doosey, but worth considering. :)

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