Blind Magi any concept in mind

I've gone searching for spells I remembered (using Individual instead of Vision). I discovered that they're all from the wiki and written by one person. Then I found Fingers for Eyes (HP p.84). This spell essentially says One Shot is correct. But we also have two partial contradictions within canon. Look back at Prying Eyes. First, this lets you see if you're blind according to Fingers for Eyes. But if it's dim and you're blind, it actually doesn't let you see because you can only see as much as you could normally even though there is enough light to see by. What? Second, if you enhance your vision magically, that enhancement still applies. So for consistency, diminishing one's senses magically should still apply as well. But if you magically make a person blind, and it still applies, then this blind person could not see via Prying Eyes. What? So it seems One Shot's interpretation is the one most strongly supported by canon, but canon ends up contradicting itself to get there.

(Side note, One Shot, you are not limited to Individual and sense targets with R: Personal. Part is also valid. I was using Individual, but that was based on the group of spells I mentioned were actually from the wiki. I agree with you that they should all be T: Vision and are all in error.)

I don't think there's a contradiction in Fingers for Eyes.
Finger for Eyes allows you to "use one sense (sight) at a distance", it's just not your sight -- it's the touched person's sight!
That's why it requires you to touch a person, rather than just anything in the Room (e.g. its floor on which you are probably standing).
Is it a ... bold interpretation of the guideline? Possibly, and it's a bit ... strange in the light of the Shared Senses familiar power (that's InMe).
But hey, why not ask directly to Richard Love (who's often on the forum) what he meant?

Not quite. HP p.84 Fingers for Eyes targets a person by touch, because it is designed to be cast through a tunnel, which is made to cast R: Touch spells at that person.
If that person then is in a room, by HP p.79 dot 5 this room can become the spell's Target.

If the targeted person closes her eyes, this does not affect the sight of the caster of Fingers for Eyes into the room. But if the targeted person runs into the open, there is no more T: Room for the spell and it fails.


EDIT: Fingers for Eyes is a very useful spell for a blind magus with a guide grog or guide familiar:
(1) The magus does not need to directly touch the room he is seeing into - so no fumbling around while moving through it.
(2) When led into a new room by the guide, the blind magus can just recast the spell without needing to find something new to touch.
(3) The magus can still act as blind and led by the guide, while he is seeing everything in the room.

Read what I wrote again. I said the contradictions are in Prying Eyes, not Fingers for Eyes. Prying Eyes explicitly addresses part of the guidelines that Fingers for Eyes says nothing about. In addressing that part of the guidelines the contradictions arise.

Actually, I had read what you had written. I just phrased my response poorly.
I meant: there's no contradiction between Prying Eyes and Fingers for Eyes.
At least, I don't see any, though I'll be happy to stand corrected!

Prying Eyes allows you to use your own sight at a distance.
If you are blind, you won't see. If the Room is in dim light, you'll see little. If you can see invisible faeries, you'll see any in the Room. Etc.

Fingers for Eyes allows you to use, at a distance, someone else's sight.
If he is blind, you won't see. If he is in a Room in dim light, you'll see little. If he can see invisible faeries, so will you. Etc.

Best once more read the explanation below and the spell in the context of HP p.77ff The Intangible Assassin:

So, what the touched person sees is quite irrelevant. Otherwise the Magic Resistance of creatures sensed would not apply, and the spell would be - just like ArM5 p.105 Shared Senses - a base 15 InMe.


For what it is worth, One Shot seems to have captured my intention with Fingers for Eyes. My intent was that the spell allowed the caster to see the Room (which the caster is touching something within). It's very similar to Prying Eyes except that the duration is different and the superficial actions of the caster are different (need to touch something in the Room, rather than touch the wall of the Room).

If you are blind Fingers for Eyes allows you to see (the Room only), because to see when blind you need a spell that allows you to see something. That is what this spell does.

If the Room is dark, then you can still "see" the Room via Fingers for Eyes. However, you just see darkness, which would not normally be very useful. I suppose you know that there no light source in the room, which might sometimes be helpful information.

If the thing that the caster touches (either directly or via an Intangible Tunnel) is blind, that doesn't matter. The thing that the caster touches could be a person or it could be a vase of flowers. It could be anything. The thing that the caster touches just has to be in a Room. The target of the spell is the Room.

Thanks for replying. Maybe you can clear those two things (from Prying Eyes) up at least in your opinion vis-a-vis Fingers for Eyes? If the guideline lets a blind person, why can a blind person not see in a dim room while a person with normal sight can, though more poorly? Why, if magical modifications to your sight apply, would using magic to blind someone stop the spell from working while normal blindness does not?

I might not be totally clear on what the issue is, but this is my opinion.

  1. The InIm "Use A Sense at a Distance" guidelines provide the caster with sensory information via magic. The status and location, and even existence, of the caster's organic sensory organs (eyes, ears, etc) do not matter. When you use The Ear For Distant Voices to eavesdrop on a conversation in another tribunal, you are not using your organic ears to gather the sensory information. You are using the magical spell instead.
  2. So, if your organic sensory organs are damaged / non-functional, it does not matter, to the InIm guideline. Because the organic sensory organs are not the source of the sensory information. The magic spell is the source of sensory information.
  3. If using Prying Eyes and the like to see a dimly lit room, then both a blind magus and sighted magus using the spell would see the same thing: a dimly lit room. How useful that is depends on the precise circumstances: it would allow you to infer that the fireplace was not lit, for example.
  4. If the caster (of Prying Eyes) is the subject of a spell that blinds them, then that may or may not interfere with Prying Eyes et al. If the blinding spell damages/affects the caster's organic sensory organs, then it should not matter, as the spell replaces the sensory organs (as the source of sensory information). On the other hand, if the blinding spell was some sort of Mentem spell that spoofs / damages how the caster uses sensory information, then its effect should continue even if the caster tries to use Prying Eyes. So, depends on what the blinding spell is, and the best judgement of the troupe.
  5. If you have a modern understanding of physiology and realise that sensory loss can be the result of, for example, damage / malformation of the sensory organs (e.g. eyes are damaged) AND/OR some sort of brain problem with processing the sensory information, then you might run into contradictions. I'd advise that you just pretend that doesn't happen: sensory loss is a result of damage/malformation of the sensory organs and the InIm effect magically provides sensory information, bypassing the need for sensory organs.
  6. Not all "sensory" spells work the same way. For example, Whispering Winds (In Au) aids the transmission of sound through the air, to your ears. So, having functioning ears would be needed to make use of that spell.

The Limit of Essential Nature on page 79-80 of the core books states "For example, some people are essentially blind, whereas others are blind merely as a result of chance."

Is there a difference between what magic can do for an essentially blind person and one blind as a result of chance? Should there be?

Yes, there is.

So you cannot apply a CrCo or CrMe ritual to cure essential blindness forever.


Thanks. Unfortunately, it's as I suspected:

That is what I figured from Fingers for Eyes. But this spell's description disagrees with you. "If the room is... poorly lit, you can only see as much as you could if you were inside." So a blind magus would see nothing in a dimly lit room according to the spell.

I see the consistency in your interpretation. However, based on this interpretation Eyes of the Cat should not help. Yet according to the spell's description ("magical enhancements of your senses do apply") it will help.

  1. I suspect that when Prying Eyes was written the author wasn't considering the possibility of the magus being blind without the assistance of the spell. So, the text isn't as clear as it could be for that (rare?) circumstance.
  2. However, the Prying Eyes text was (I think) written considering the situation of a normally sighted magus trying to see what is in an unlit room, which would probably be most common interaction between this spell and unlit rooms, so probably the one the text wants to tell us about. Therefore, the text should be read with that in mind.
  3. So, I think that the most natural read of the text you quote (which I believe is the intent) is simply that the spell does not itself grant the caster any capability to see in low light conditions (beyond what a normally sighted person could see).

When considering Fingers for Eyes I did consider the alternative that it couldn't work for blind characters, because they couldn't see.

However, that doesn't really work; you get stuck in a loop. "The magus can't see, so he casts a spell to allow him to see magically (which would be an InIm "use a sense at a distance" type spell), but that doesn't work because he can't see, so he casts an InIm spell to allow him to see, but that doesn't work because he can't see, so he ...)". If that is the approach taken, then you arrive at the conclusion that InIm cannot be used to give characters magical senses, which seems contrary to expectations and Wrong for gameplay. The argument was that it was better for InIm spells which grant magical senses to simply do so.

However, all said and done, there are certainly still some inconsistencies in the rules. That's just a consequence of complicated rules written by multiple authors trying to describe imaginary phenomena.

I find the arguement that Pying Eyes allows a blind magus to see an ill conveived one.
The guidelines for Intellgo Imaginem clearly state, that it allows the use of a sense. It doesn't create a sense or the ability to percieve with a sense. It allows the use of a sense. A already present sense. All the other guidelines clearly state it when they grant an extra sense ("Allows to sense the qualities of a fire" for example)

So, with Prying Eyes, of course you need to be not blind to percieve anything at all, because all the spell does is allow the USE of a sense that already exists on a special circumstance (i.e. Not being in the room).
With Fingers for eyes, one uses the sense of the person one touches.

If one would allows Intellego Imaginem to circumvent blindness one would also say that a rego imaginem effect on sight would affect blind people, which is clearly ridiculous.

I would say, that allowing someone to use a sense like sight (i.e. create a sense or the ability to sense) is actually outside the purview of Imaginem alltogether.


just to avoid carousels:
Richard Love is the author of Hermetic Projects ( ) p.77ff The Intangible Assassin, and in particular the spell Fingers for Eyes on p.84 there.


In that case, I think the guidelines for Intellego Imaginem are very poorly worded...

You clearly see the inconsistency between the two spells that I was mentioning.

That could be and we could read it that way. However, the more literal reading is consistent with the next statement, while this reading is not. The next statement about magical enhancement does not work with your interpretation, either. You run into the same loop. Someone uses magic to 'enhance' your eyes in such a way that you are effectively blind. You want to see while blind, so you cast Prying Eyes so now you can see. But the enhancement still applies so you can't see.

I think I can explain it better this way:

This could be read two ways. First, that your sense no longer pulls in information where it is but from somewhere else, that your sense has been "moved" (for use later). That is how the text for Prying Eyes is written. Since it's your vision moved, you see what you would normally see if you were there, blindness and magical enhancements included. This also means you could no longer see where you are (if you aren't blind). Second, that you pull in one type of sensory information from elsewhere, essentially "clairsvoyance" via magic. This is how Fingers for Eyes is written. With clairvoyance blindness is irrelevant, but so is anything applied to your eyes or vision like Eyes of the Cat and Eyes of the Eagle. In this case you could still see where you are (if not blind).

After reading through so much of this recently, I think I can resolve this in two ways, both in agreement. First, both spells, and The Ear for Distant Voices, are written the same way in terms of R/D/T. If your sense were moved, then they should be T: Vision (or Hearing for The Ear for Distant Voices) and R: Personal. So they're all using R/D/T with the clairvoyance interpretation, not the moved interpretation. Second, guidelines that move thing have a second set of ranges built into the guideline for how far the thing is moved. Look at ReCo for example. These guidelines are not written that way at all, so they don't seem to be about a moved sense and are instead designed as clairvoyance (or other clairsentience).

So my conclusion is that the second sentence of Prying Eyes contains multiple errors. It should read something more like, "If the room is unlit or poorly lit, you can only see as much as normal human vision would allow, and magical enhancements of your senses do not apply.

The guidelines don't specify an already existing sense. Read my two interpretations above. Think of his interpretation like a black-and-white security camera linked to a monitor in front of you. You can still see normally, but you can also see in black-and-white at a distance. This doesn't mean your vision has been changed to black and white. And just because you can see in color doesn't mean you can see in color at that distance. Meanwhile, your interpretation is like having cybernetic eyes in place of your normal eyes with a radio link to your brain and putting your eyes somewhere your head is not. Both interpretations are valid readings of the guideline itself, but I think I have presented two strong arguments to resolve which spell is in error and which interpretation is correct overall.

I wouldn't say the guidelines are so poorly worded so much as one of the example spells in ArM5 is such a mess (even internally) that it pushes people toward misinterpreting the guidelines as intended.

No, not at all. Look at the suggested effects for familiars in ArM5. That's InMe. Look at Fingers for Eyes again. It doesn't use that person's senses at all, and it's not InMe.

It would be difficult, but you could effectively blind someone with ReIm: move all visual species that arrive at the target elsewhere before they get to the target's eyes. Now the target's eyes get no species.

The first part of your suggestion expresses the intention assumed by Richard Love, and IMO would make a useful erratum.

Its second part would AFAICS still try to cover too many different situations at once, though.

I would rather append an additional phrase, which then could result in an errataed spell like this:


EDIT: Writing a clean proposal for an erratum takes time.

How could those be used since it is only used for Intellego guidelines, where "moving" something is a Rego form spell?

IMO, prying eyes let you just see normal species. In the dark, species are dark so you don't see them. You see but you don't see what you want to see. You can't see with this spell something the spell cannot see. For example, you will not be able to see an invisible character. That should require another guideline (which serf's parma is not included, but is used in the first of the InIm spells, which use a general level type).

A blind magus would see using the prying eyes, because I would decide he is blind because he can't use his eyes, but using magic bypass his eyes - otherwise, what's the point of having it for a character?

Of course, being blind with a flaw, he can't have his eyes fixed by a CreoCorpus ritual. (That is something I think which was clearly established before.)