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Did the mana cycle predate the 2nd age?

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PiXeL01

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« Reply #15 on: (04:26:06/03-03-19) »
Well, mana is created by life, we know that from experiments in space where there’s no life and no mana. We also only have the elves’ word for the duration of the mana circle being roughly 5,000 years.
However, an Age isn’t defined by a number but defined by events. Who isn’t to say that for the mana levels to reach required to breach the barrier between Horror, sorry Elder Gods’ realms and other own isn’t determined by just life (plants, bacteria etc) but life with a certain complexity.
For all we know the first Age could be 100s of millennia and the second though shorter but still difficult to measure given lack of proper evidence.
Also, if an a Mana Age depends on the amount of complex life then breaching the barriers could potentially cut a peak short due to mass extinctions. Who knows, maybe these global level extinctions were caused to save a little life ... One event that supports this theory is that the Fifth Age was cut short by the Ghost Dance and the pace of the Sixth Age was fastened by Darken and forces within Aztechnology among others

As for evidence the only books which wrote about other Ages would be the older ED books such as Dragons which defines the First Age as the Age of Creation.
It also says we are all Elder Gods but you can ignore that little piece of trivia.
« Last Edit: (04:33:37/03-03-19) by PiXeL01 »
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Jareth Valar

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« Reply #16 on: (22:55:33/03-03-19) »
One other possible view on the ages/cycles is that they are not equal.

Imagine, if you will, an Earth with a unified mana(less) level.  Some cosmic/catastrophic event (kind of like the K-T Extinction angle a little too much, lol) that thrown the Earths position in the Astral-scape askew. Slowly (by most sapient standards) it is correcting itself, each pass past the Astral median shortening ( i.e. 100 'current' cycles for the 1st age, 50 for the second, 25 for the 3rd, etc. or some other formula even)  This could also "explain" the rise in mana levels far faster than expected to the Elves in the older fluff.

Just a thought.  :)

Nath

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« Reply #17 on: (18:34:37/03-27-19) »
While the expression "Sixth World" is widely used and there are many references to at least one previous age of magic, there are actually very few sources that address the idea of cycle and their length. Ehran's speech titled Humans and the Cycle of Magic - two versions of which exist - is practically the unique source material.

http://www.amurgsval.org/shadowrun/imports/cycleOfMagic.html
https://web.archive.org/web/20080317094824/http://www.shadowrun4.com/fiction/fiction1.shtml

For the record, Dawn of the Artifacts 3: Darkest Hour features Aztechnology-employed archeologists work putting Atlantis destruction in 9564 BC, contradicting the 3113 BC date Ehran uses. On the other hand, Artifacts Unbound have several magical artifacts dated back to "only" 550 BC.

It's not even clear if the expression "Sixth World" came into use shortly after 2011 or later. Shadowrun, first edition, says "some mystics" refers to what the Mayan called the Sixth World but does not state when they started doing so. Sixth World Almanac mentions Ehran mentionning his 'controversial "Sixth World" theory' for the first time in a book published in 2043.

It is pretty well established that there was a period of no-magic, that came before what we call the Sixth World, so it makes sense to call it the Fifth World. And there are big flying lizard talking in your head that says they used to live in a previous period of magic and have been sleeping since, so it makes sense to call that previous period the Fourth Age.

But the reason why people call one the Sixth World in the first place is, as far as their statement goes, because the Mayan did it. Ehran (as far as we know, based on the HatCoM speech) doesn't make such statement, but does not give an alternative explanation as to why he call thel the Fourth and the Sixth Age. If the "Sixth World" usage predates Ehran's speech and book, he might actually just trying not to confuse his audience.

(See also a my previous post regarding Ehran's speech accuracy)

As far as I remember, Earthdawn never refers to its period as the Fourth something. An older Age of Dragons is mentionned, but I'm not sure there are any mention of a non-magical period in-between. However, Dunkelzahn is said, as one of the oldest great dragons, to have hatched during the Age of Dragons, while he states in Shadowrun-era media he is 15,000 years old.

The most interesting part, in my opinion, is the lack of direct witness. While Ehran is born during the Earthdawn-era, he asserts the threshold between magic appearance and disappearance is about 5200 years. But personnally, he only has witnessed the beginning and end of the (so-called) Fifth World. And he wouldn't even know the later when he was, as he claims, designing the Egyptian calendar. It also assumes he was able to never lost track of time over five millenias (yes, he is immortal, but that doesn't mean he has eidetic memory) - his best bet would probably to carve a celestial map in a stone somewhere that he could refer to later to calculate how many times has passed (also works for dragons, which otherwise would have abolutely no way to know for how long they have slept). So if it has any truth, Ehran's statement of a 5200 years cycle must be based on someone else's information. You could not assert a regular cycle length before recording at least two entire ages - that is, by the end of the Fourth World for someone born during the second.

One of my favored theory follows the idea that the cycle of magic is altered by the use of magic. If there are many magic users, and/or if they use powerful magic (like the Ghost Dance), the magic level will move faster, possibly higher, and may later drop faster and/or lower, by a pendulum effect. The thing is, the entire human world population circa 4000 BC was a few millions, which would include maybe a few dozens of thousands of magic users - with limited transportation and communication technology to disseminate magical knowledge. So it might be actually a mistake to placate data from that period onto the Shadowrun-era, which have a thousand times more magic users, plus coordinated efforts like the Ghost Dance to spread magical knowledge. Going the other way, the "First Age" might have been a period of magic that lasted from the very beginning of Humanity up until there were enough magic users (possibly as low as 1,000 worldwide, out of 100,000) to knock the pendulum off balance for the first time and start the cycle that last to this day.

Beta

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« Reply #18 on: (21:28:23/03-27-19) »
Thanks Nath-- interesting points and ideas!
Jawsey  --
speechthought

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« Reply #19 on: (22:44:07/03-27-19) »
IF I recall correctly;

The very first mention of the "6th world" was in an intercepted message by a very young Fastjack... waaay back in 2011...

I'll see if I can find it..

I was wrong..

The message I was thinking about was

Quote
Good morning world. Welcome back. Play nice.
         -Saeletra

Which has always made me wonder... Who, or what is Saeletra?
« Last Edit: (00:29:29/03-28-19) by Reaver »
Where am I going? And why am I in a hand basket ???

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Michael Chandra

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« Reply #20 on: (01:24:06/03-28-19) »
IF I recall correctly;

The very first mention of the "6th world" was in an intercepted message by a very young Fastjack... waaay back in 2011...

I'll see if I can find it..

I was wrong..

The message I was thinking about was

Quote
Good morning world. Welcome back. Play nice.
         -Saeletra

Which has always made me wonder... Who, or what is Saeletra?
My theory: The thing that prevents nukes from working properly.
CorpSec when an alarm is triggered;: "This is so sad, Alexa play Shoot The Runner"

Reaver

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« Reply #21 on: (01:51:53/03-28-19) »
IF I recall correctly;

The very first mention of the "6th world" was in an intercepted message by a very young Fastjack... waaay back in 2011...

I'll see if I can find it..

I was wrong..

The message I was thinking about was

Quote
Good morning world. Welcome back. Play nice.
         -Saeletra

Which has always made me wonder... Who, or what is Saeletra?
My theory: The thing that prevents nukes from working properly.

could be... but what or who is it?


and to add perspective, the single reply to it was:

"I'm a'scared Mommy!"
 -The Big "D"

(the reply came much later it should be noted)

Where am I going? And why am I in a hand basket ???

Remember: You can't fix Stupid. But you can beat on it with a 2x4 until it smartens up! Or dies.

Michael Chandra

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« Reply #22 on: (02:33:48/03-28-19) »
If Eldritch Horrors dream of ending our existence, Saeletra is what wakes them up screaming.
CorpSec when an alarm is triggered;: "This is so sad, Alexa play Shoot The Runner"