Energy Magic and the Vital Faculty


  • Hermetic Magic as is written in the core rulebook is unable to grant fatigue levels.
  • However, in Hedge Magic, there is a potential breakthrough with the integration of Folk Witches with Energy Magic being the result. This allows for Hermetic Mages (at least those with the new virtue) to grant fatigue levels.
  • Fatigue is mentioned on page 39 of Art and Academe to be caused by the dissipation of the Vital Faculty when the body undergoes strenuous activity.
  • The Shadow of Life Renewed (ArM5 pg 129-130) is a high level spell that under current Hermetic Theory is able to restore the basic aspects of life to a corpse, although it is highly unreliable and does not bring back the spirit or soul of the deceased.


Say there is a Creo Corpus specialist that either through independent research or integration of Folk Witch magic is able to affect the vital faculty of a living person. Vital faculty is something that is constantly produced in the body in the heart, and can be removed from a living being without killing them.

Would this Magus be able to produce a more reliable form of The Shadow of Life Renewed, as they have a solid fundamental understanding of this 'breath of life' (the vital faculty)?

Did Dr. Frankenstein have Energy Magic?


Slightly more reliable perhaps in the sense of reduced risk of the body dissolving or suffering other physical problems, but they would still not be able to bring back the soul or spirit and can thus still not resurrect the dead for real.

Fair enough; however I am curious if you would rule if a mind would develop out of a body that is provided the natural faculty, the vital faculty, and all of the other necessities of life.
Personally, I think the potential of the Order of Hermes dealing with 'soulless' humans to be moderately interesting, alongside the similar offered points in the Fertility Magic chapter of Ancient magic.

But mostly
I find the idea of a widely anachronistic hermetic mage acting like Dr. Frankenstein to be humorous enough to base a character off of.

It is definitely possible to create Magical Animals with Intelligence, so creating a mind does not seem to be an inherent problem for Hermetic Magic.


The ideal isn't resurrection, it is creating new life. So I am curious what level a hermetic 'mind' can be made.
And if one with sufficient intelligence is made, would it have a soul?

Souls cannot be created by Hermetic Magic. Perhaps it could be done after some very difficult breakthroughs, but that would be up to you and your group to decide for your saga.

The guideline for creating magical beasts is in the core rule book. CrAn(Vi), base 50. If you want the beast to be intelligent you need to add a Mentem requisite. Possibly other requisites as well, depending on the beast.
A couple of example spells can be found in Hermetic Projects p126-127

Creating mundane, non-intelligent animals is much easier. Base level varies between 5 and 15 depending on what type of animal you want. Example spells are in the core rules.

Oh, I am aware that no soul can be made with hermetic magic.
I am curious if one would be formed accidentally, through an act of divine grace if the conditions are met for a human(ish) brain to be in a newly revivified human body.

Or infernal grace.
Just musing over plot details honestly

Well, there is fertility magic, though that is moe of a magical assist than actual creation of a soul, but that does seem to be as close as you can come. On the other hand there are mysteries for letting spirits take possession of bodies, and even for creating faeries, so something like a soul might be doable.

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If I was being generous with the creation of either automata (Mystery Cults) or Mechanica of Heron (Ancient Magic), I guess working with flesh isn't 'that' different from giving life to a metal facsimile.

So if the attempt was to create a flesh golem, that could work

The idea with a Verditius working with flesh as a craftsmen is moderately unsettling though, but a decent idea.
If non-suitable for a normal game.

Edit: This idea is similar to Marcus of Criamon for Magi of Hermes. I knew it sounded familiar

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would that be chirugy or medicine as a craft ability? Animals could be leatherworking I suppose... unless there is a taxidermy craft in the 13th century...

apparently, taxidermy was a thing in ancient Greece, so sure.


Craft: Taxidermy
Specializes in flesh automata with magical might

I have a new idea for a 'friendly' neighboring covenant

IMO, it would produce a stable, if soulles, human.
What this would mean is up to anyone's guess.

It could be just fine, comparable to an intelligent animal, with no other side effect than "when you die, that's it".

Its probably more interesting to treat it otherwise.
This could leave that person more vulnerable to infernal temptation, but, at the same time, not interesting as a prey to demons. In that way, they could make perfect agents.

They could have trouble with some aspect of human life or behaviour, with, maybe, risks similar to that of a Golem.

All for now, gotta work

I had thought from a&a that the real work of original thinking originates in the soul. That the thoughts are worked through several faculties of the mind, but that cognition of itself was something the soul did.

I always thought this is why I can't creo mentem up a new mind (outside of the intelligent magical creature, which seems like an outlier).

It makes sense and (aside from magically granted skills) it would make sense that the training rules for animals rather than humans might apply, with the possible exception of language.

The principle difference between the mind of an animal and that of a human is the possession of a soul, which is unique to rational beings such as humans, angels, and demons. The soul provides both reason (ratio) and intellect (intellectus). (31)

The sensitive faculty has ten senses or wits; five outward (vision, touch, smell, hearing, and taste) and five inward (cognition, common sense, estimation, memory, and imagination). The outward wits gather sensory species with which to nourish the sensitive faculty, and enable the soul to perceive the world around it. (39-40)

This hypothetical creation would be one that still can perceive the world through its senses, and can use that information with its inward senses, but is unable to come to non-evident conclusions about the world (due to the lack of reason) and is also lacking a moral compass (due to the lack of intellect).

Which makes the creation of this being even odder in medieval metaphysics, as this is a creature that is able to act like a human in certain circumstances, but is clearly missing that sense of right and wrong, as well as being unable to think rationally.
A quite literal philosophical zombie if you will.

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Coherent reasoning, but clearly not correct for Mythic Europe where we can find beings such as dragons that can be very intelligent and rational, yet does not appear to have a soul.
(Dragons can be created with Hermetic Magic.)


Perhaps magic is filling in that aspect of Reason in these magical creatures?
They do not have the soul that allows for salvation, or the understanding of right and wrong, but they are able to learn skills thus showing the ability to reason.
Which is not supported by the philosophers but I doubt Aristotle had many productive conversations with Dragons.

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Depends on what mushrooms grow near Athens...