At the Heart of Kempin Magic

At the heart of the Kempin Magic is one simple concept, which then branches out into the complexities of magical systems and even religious belief. At magic’s core is the idea that:


Everything is Kempin, and Kempin is In All Things.


At the beginning of all things there was only Kempin, an all powerful and all encompassing being of incomprehensible might. As the sum total of all that was, Kempin filled the entire void of existence with his singular presence. How long Kempin existed as all there was is unknowable, but it is said that he became unsatisfied with this status quo. Kempin broke himself into pieces that became the Gods and Goddesses, and gave each the gift of their own individual identity. These divine beings, then broke themselves into pieces, gifting form and power to the beings and objects that they created. Every piece of every piece of Kempin that was formed and given identity during this creation process exists within the illusion that they are separate from Kempin. That they are something “other” from the shattered reality that surrounds them. So strong is this illusion of otherness, that there are monks and priests that spend entire lifetimes of study and meditation for just a single solitary moment where they realize and experience a oneness with Kempin.


Because everything in existence takes its form from the substance of Kempin, a connection exists between all things within the Real and Unreal. This is the core belief of those that worship the Gods and Goddesses of the Kempin pantheon, and it is the foundational truth of most magical disciplines on the World of Kempin. Some take the myths to be allegorical and valuable as teaching tools only. Other take them very literally. But the results are the same. The Kempin Mythos exists to help frame, categorize, and possibly control all the varied potentialities, both mundane and magical, that exist in the World of Kempin.


The “Legend of Days” is a simple creation story, but it helps one understand the role of each of the Gods in the Kempin Mythos:


On the first day of the world there was only Kempin the Lord. On the second day the waters flowed (Moch of the Depths). On the third day the waters were tossed by storms (Tobin the Wrathful), causing the earth to be exposed on the fourth day (Crago the Unbreaking). On the fifth day the sun lit creation (Po the Redeemer). Through the trickery of Rukin the sixth day was dark with night. On the seventh day man discovered wisdom (Alcorn the Bishop). Wisdom led to craft on the eighth day (Rusch the Provider), which led to the beauties of art on the ninth day (Hiser the Messenger). On the tenth day man discovered love and his own miracle of creation (Mishkin the Giftbringer). But the division of the whole led full circle to Kempin, Lord of King, War, and Justice as order was established by mankind and civilization was formed.


This creation story provides the order of the days of the week for the Empire Calendar. Kempday, Mochday, Tobday, Cragday, Poday, Rukeday, Alcday, Rushday, Hiseday, and Mish.


Because everything is Kempin, and Kempin is in all things, the magical systems that developed from this belief attempt to draw upon the potentialities that exist in the deep essence of all things. Spells that involve flying must draw upon the potentiality to fly, often through the use of body parts (blood, feathers, bones) of creatures that can fly. Spells that make something invisible, must draw upon the potentiality to be unseen, as found in creatures that naturally camouflage themselves or through materials that generally go unseen (gasses, flawless diamonds, etc.) Spellcasters of all types in the World of Kempin, rely on this connection to all things to make things happen that seem impossible otherwise.


It is enormously difficult for most mortals to directly shape this raw potentiality and bring magic into being. Most spend long years of prayer, study, or practice, seeking the secret knowledge and skill it takes to tap this power.


The spells of wizards, sorcerers, warlocks, and bards are commonly called arcane magic. These spells rely on an understanding—learned or intuitive—of the connection between all things. The caster learns to use magical formula, exertions of will, gifts from more powerful creatures, or the flow and rhythm of song to create the desired magical effects. The spells of clerics, druids, paladins, and rangers are called divine magic. These spellcasters' access to the magical potentiality in all things is mediated by divine power—gods, the divine forces of nature, or the sacred weight of a paladin's oath.


    • Mark Stinson

      RAW D&D describes a concept called the Weave, that is the core of the magical system.  Since the late 1980's, when I wrote the Legend of Days, and described the magical system of Kempin...this gaming world's magical theory has been different than this.  So, for the rule-set, I saw down and wrote this chapter, to help explain the nature of magic on Kempin...rather than keeping the vanilla RAW explanation.