Wednesday, June 15, 2011

On Alchemic Gamesmastering

I am a fan of the idea of Alchemy as a system of symbolic relationships. The Alchemists envisioned, it seems to me, a Universal array of Symbolic Correspondences which appear throughout the natural world as reflections of the supernatural world, connecting abstractions with instances in conjunction with a vast interwoven tapestry of underlying meanings embodied in symbols, glyphs, words, songs and art. Alchemists such as Raymond Lull and John Dee seemed to point toward a mathematical and poetical design of The Great Pattern.

I like the conception quite a bit, and I feel that this is what the Greater Ancients may have been alluding to when they said that "a man can see the whole Universe in the flickering leaves of a single oak tree" (Dendromancy). They alluded to the possibility of an intuitive grasping of The Great Pattern. They surmised the existence of hidden meanings above and below nature, as a reflection of the Realm of Divine Idea, and sought to convey the essence of the mystery through folklore, myth and legend.

How Gamesmasters in the future may include such a depth of correspondences in Worlds to come is a matter of speculation at the moment, however I am optimistic that such implementations may make a whole new level of experience of Feylandia possible. One in which symbolic correspondences may give rise to a deeper appreciation and understanding of the “inner landscape” of the Invisible Kingdom.

I look for an Interactive Story in which minds may mingle and find strange inklings of Other Worlds amid the myriad of treasures and perils of our rough and tumble Campaign Settings. Ones in which Adventurers in their pursuit of fame and fortune may happen to occasionally also chance upon that rarest and most precious of treasures, ...wisdom.

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