Non-Magical Traditions, the Gift and the Ungifted

Hello again!

I was reading Realm of Power Faerie and come with a lot of question of Ars Margica in general. The main focus is how works the learning of this other non-magical traditions.

First, what I understand:

  • Non-magic abilities have their ways to let Ungifted people learn their abilities without a initiation. Fae Rank for Fae, True Faith for Divine, Infernal Warping for Infernal.

  • The magic realm don't have anything like this, and only the Gift let you learn magic abilities without a initiation.

  • When learning a ability without a initiation, the ability is aligned with the realm that let you know the ability. For example, a gifted person can learn any supernatural ability but will receive the Magical version of that ability, even if the source was Fae.

  • Only the Gift let you learn no matter the source, the other methods need the source being the same realm as the method they use, so a character with True Faith could only learn Second Sight from a source of Divine Second Sight and not from a maga.

  • The Gift can't learn ability that can't be affiliated with the magical realm. For example, a gifted person can't learn any Infernal Method and Power without initiation or Infernal Warping, the same with abilities like Corruption (only Infernal) or Sense Holy and Unholiness (only Divine).

  • No matter the realm, learning a supernatural ability always have penalties for the points you have in other supernatural abilities and arts.

  • No matter the realm, Ungifted initiation need to take a Ordeal, and can't be self-initiated.

I want to know if I understand this correctly, and after that I have a couple of questions:

  1. You need the Gift to join a non-magic tradition?
    1.1. If yes: Then they have some form of Opening the Gift not stated in the book?
    1.2. If no: How you join the tradition? You only ask and they say yes?

  2. Ungifted people have some benefit from favored abilities? I understand they don't, but the methods to learn other realm supernatural abilities let me think yes. But then, how you determine they have favored abilities? (a little the same as question 1.2)

Thanks for your time, I'm very interested in this interactions, so hope you can clarify some of this stuff.

The Gift really only matters for Magic traditions and Magic abilities and arts.

To benefit from Favoured abilties you need to be a member of a tradition, and fulfill an additional requirement depending on the associated Realm:
For magical traditions you need the Gift
For divine traditions you need True Faith
For faerie traditions, I am actually not quite sure what you need, but probably some Sympathy trait
For infernal traditions you basically just need to have interacted with the Infernal in some way - which is a very low bar.

What is required to join a tradition will depend on the tradition. For some it may suffice with a "May I join?"/"Sure!", while others may insist on some elaborate ceremony.
Note that you can only ever get the mechanical benefits from one single tradition per realm.


Mostly what ErikT said. Note how he split things differently, making the Gift line up with True Faith, etc. The one part that is a little off is the last sentence, as it is possible to have the Gift opened to more than on tradition and thus to gain mechanical benefits from more than one tradition of the Magic realm.

Meanwhile, special Warping methods are restricted to a single one. Faerie always loses out. Generally for all the others you decide with the troupe which makes more sense.

As for

I'm not so sure about that. We do know there are statements like this:

I'm not sure there is any specific statement about a teacher from a different realm teaching a shared Supernatural Ability across realms.

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Also there are divine and faerie powers which can be explicitly learned without initiation by the Gifted. From ROP:F p.118:

Faerie doctors who have The Gift instead of being a
Mythic Companion can choose one Supernatural Ability without needing the corresponding Virtue; for faerie doctors this is usually
Curse-Throwing. Gifted characters can learn
Supernatural Abilities as described on page
166 of Ars Magica Fifth Edition

and from ROP:D p. 98:

A Gifted reader, however, may read
it for what it is — the secrets of Solomon
— and they may attempt to learn the
Supernatural Ability of Ars Notoria, following the regular rules for learning a
Supernatural Ability (Ars Magica 5th
Edition, page 166). If successful, the reader gains the supernatural Virtue, Ars
Notoria, and an Ars Notoria score of 1

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Ars Notoria is a magical ability rather than a divine ability, though it is strongly associated with the Divine - and Christianity in particular.