I was tinkering with the idea of creating a metal statue of a pegasus, and then animating it. One of the options that I came up with on how to have it behave more horse-like was to place the mind of a horse in the statue. Then I got to wondering if, and how, that was possible under Hermetic magic. I think it would be. And then I got to wondering if it would be possible to...expand on that concept.
What if a magus, or (anyone/anything, really) could have their mind placed into something that was as close to indestructible as possible? The reward for the shield grog Rory's decades of loyal service could be to become an animate stone statue of a Roman centurion.
For humans, the base would be Exchange of the Two Minds (ReMe 55, p. 152 of the main rule book), which is already a ritual. Would it be possible to switch minds with, say, a dog (Animal requisite), or place it into a statue (Terram)?
And could the process be duplicated with an animal into a statue (ReAn, with a Te requisite)?
I note now that the maximum duration of a Hermetic spell (except Creo, with vis) is Year (which, itself, must be ritual and thus uses vis as well). So this may not be possible unless you make certain assumptions.
For example, Exchange of the Two Minds says that you must make a Stamina stress roll (made before the switch is made) to survive the exchange. However, it doesn't say what would happen if one of the bodies dies before the spell expires. Does the mind, at the moment of death, return to its true body? Or do the minds stay where they are, and the mind is "trapped" forever in its new body? (Which is not necessarily a bad thing, as the spell description mentions that older magi place their minds into younger and healthier bodies, and thus the magi could be forgiven for wanting to make the transfer permanent.)
So, basically, my question is two-fold:
- Can the mind be "switched" with something that's mindless? This would, presumably, either kill the human (or animal) host or put him in a vegetative state until the spell expires?
- What happens to the mind if one or the other of the bodies dies before the spell expires?