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  • 14 weeks

    Ok so I was encouraged to share my rant/thoughts on magic in Equestria here. That's your warning, if you don't want to read some internet nobody's thoughts and theories on magic in a magical pony world, then venture no further.

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  • 22 weeks

    Hey there

    To all the people that are (inexplicably) tracking this story and waiting for the next chapter, look it's coming just not very fast.
    Insert gripe about usual author struggles: inspiration, motivation, school/work, whatever

    So yeah, please be patient.

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Magic · 9:34pm Nov 10th, 2018

Ok so I was encouraged to share my rant/thoughts on magic in Equestria here. That's your warning, if you don't want to read some internet nobody's thoughts and theories on magic in a magical pony world, then venture no further.

Congrats, you made it this far. If you stick through the whole thing, I might give you a cookie.

Ok. So ima kick this off with an idea I've been playing around with for a while.

Dark magic, it's bad.

Normal ponies either are unable to use dark magic, or are unable to survive it's use without consequences. Alicorns, however, can freely use it without these negative tradeoffs, if any exist.

But we have seen a normal unicorn use it, Sombra. He gave himself over to the darkness, losing himself in it. Part of the trade, perhaps? Get this great power but lose your mind? Sounds reasonable from a storytelling perspective.

So undoubtedly dark magic can be used by normal ponies, so there has to be laws/regulations against its use. Like only certified mage are allowed to use it and it has to be closely monitored or whatever. Cases of dark magic use are probably heavily investigated, it might be a really strong policy against it.

So, it's not unreasonable to assume that over the years, other cases of dark magic use and ponies losing themselves have occured, and each been dealt with before they could get to Sombra's level.

Now let's consider it's antithesis. What is it?

Love magic? It seems likely, given that the power of the Crystal Heart defeated Sombra. But that's a unique magical artifact. Cadence is able to use a spell to keep him out of the Empire, claiming her magic is alike to the Crystal Heart (big surprise) and has an effect on him
But we have no idea if normal ponies can use Cadence's kind of magic.

So how would dark magic be sniffed out and dealt with, if Cadence was not herself present in the actions?

So I'm going to assume that love magic is unique to Cadence, and is out of my discussion now.

Next, Harmony(friendship magic). The Elements of Harmony

With Nightmare Moon and (kinda) The Pony of Shadows, we have seen that the elements can indeed fight this 'dark magic'. But there's no confirmation that ether of these cases is the same dark magic as Sombra's.

NMM was Princess Luna, an alicorn, so she was largely immune to the effects of what I'm going to call 'Tradition Dark Magic', the kind Sombra used.

The consensus within the fandom (that I've noticed at least) is usually that the Nightmare and Luna are two separate entities. The Nightmare was a manifestation of Luna's emotions and dark magic.

The Pony of Shadows was a normal unicorn, Stygian or something. It's shown in his defeat that the shadowy entity was also separate from him. He was feeding it, maybe even partially in control, but there was a clear line where he stopped and the shadow began.

This can probably also be attributed to dark magic. The Shadow was also a manifestation of Stygian's emotions.

The Shadow may have been affected by the ancient 6 (starswirl and pals), they were all ponies of power and note, it's not unreasonable to assume that the Shadow was affected by the proximity to these power sources.

So I'm going to assume that the Nightmare and the Shadow are both dark magic entities, born of intense emotion and access to a power source. They are also parasitic (probably), in that they need a host to survive (venom complex). Without a host, they slowly die, or are vulnerable to Harmony magic at least.

With Sombra, on the other hoof, there is no distinction. Sombra the unicorn is long gone, he became a dark magic entity without a corporeal body.

So if we assume all three cases are still Tradition Dark magic, then we can assume that the Nightmare and the Shadow were unique in that they were separate, created without actual dark magic use, that we know of (the purple-green effects with the horn/eyes)

The Nightmare was defeated by Harmony magic, the Shadow was kinda defeated by harmony magic, Sombra was defeated by love magic.

So we have Harmony and love that can fight dark magic. Love is unique to Cadence, Harmony to the Bearers of the Elements. Both the Crystal Heart and the Elements/Tree of Harmony are magical artifacts that were created by ponies.

But not every pony can use Harmony magic. Even Starswirl was unable to himself. The ancient 6 could use a primitive form (my guess) of it, but Starswirl himself planted the seeds that would create the tools needed for ponies to use it.

So without the Elements of Harmony or Love magic, how is dark magic fought on a more local scale?

My answer? Sunfire. Burning, cleansing, sunfire.

I'll expand on that in a bit-

So let's say each alicorn has special magic, which is a pretty likely thing given the whole Tirek thing and the princess's giving Twilight all of their special magic.

Luna=Dark(different dark), dream type stuff
Celestia-sun, light, or something

So given Luna's abilities and such, we might be able to assume that Traditional Dark Magic is a subsection of Luna's 'School of Magic'
--a school of magic is like a category that classifies magic, not an actual educational institution. Each element has a school, Transfiguration, Illusion, etc. (Don't quote me on this)

And each school is a subset of another school. Tradition magic is all the stuff that your average pone can do. It includes the race specific stuff and the universal stuff. Then there are specializations, like Illusion and transformation and elemental stuff. (I apologize for overuse of "stuff", I couldn't think of a better word)

Then we move up another level, where its divided into 3 categories; Light, Dark, and Neutral. Neutral contains most of the Traditional Magic, since its not unique to either light or dark. Telekinesis is a neutral magic, as is Illusion.

Light magic is magic that is used during the day, Dark is used during the night. They are opposites and equals, the magic of the two royal sisters

But this Dark Magic is not the caustic, evil stuff I was referring to earlier, its the Magic under Princess Luna. Dreams, Astrology, shadow-sorcery(neat stuff), etc. But Traditional Dark Magic IS classified under here. Luna's school of magic does have a dark side, just like how Light magic can be used for bad as well. The extremes. Both Light and dark can be good and bad.

Any pony, or really unicorn, is capable of doing light and dark magic. But its not as common as the neutral schools. And not many have any need or use for them. Students of Princess Celestia's School for Gifted Unicorns are likely taught from all three categories. Some might even go on to study a particular school, become a mage of it. (a mage is an expert, an active user, the magic equivalent of like a doctor/professor)

Fire magic is technically all three.
The 'Want it, need it' spell is likely dark magic.

So say a pony wanted to study Traditional Dark magic, the dangerous stuff. There is likely an extensive certification and testing process, along with regular monitoring, in order to allow them to even try and use it.

There would be very few ponies with this kind of privilege/access. Not even Celestia's personal student (Twilight) had learned about it.

Now back to Sun magic. Sun magic is the extreme of Light magic, like how Traditional Dark magic is the extreme of Dark magic. But Sun magic is even more rare than traditional dark magic.

So ponies with a cutie mark associated with Sun magic are probably closely watched and usually become Sun mages. There is probably a sun mage only once every 4-6 hundred years.

And this is where Sunset Shimmer comes in. Sun cutie mark? Check. Fire-type looking stuff? Check.
Celestia probably took her on to train her to be the next Mage of the Sun. But she never told Sunset what her ultimate plan was for her, and Sunset got the idea that she was being groomed to become an alicorn. This miscommunication and lack of foresight on Celestia's part lead to all that drama and bye bye Sunset.

So sun mages can use sun magic, but cant actually move the sun or anything.
And Sun magic is the antithesis of Traditional Dark Magic. They are at the farthest sections of the spectrum from each other. Opposites in every way, and therefor equals. But given that this is a..

and good beats evil, Sun Magic beats Traditional Dark Magic like rock beats scissors.

So when there is a Sun Mage, they would likely be tasked with sniffing out Dark magic abuse throughout Equestria and dealing with it. Agents of the Light, Dawnbringers. Not a very well known thing either. Like how the Catholic Church still has exorcists, but its not like common knowledge.

Edit: I'm not up on any details about the "alicorn amulet" so I didn't talk bout it

And that wraps up my thoughts on Magic in Equestria to a certain degree. I might post more detailed theories/thoughts on it in the future, getting into the grit of several of the schools. But that day is not today.

If you managed to make it all the way through, congratulations! I hope you enjoyed my thought-garbage!

I don't have any cookies to give you so... sorry :p

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