To date, there have been many theories and hypothesis regarding the
relatively new magical term Twilight. Although coined to generalize the
concepts of the darker planes of existence, such as the Christian Hell
or the Jewish Abyss, it has come to be considered a specific plane in
and of itself. The following is an attempt to clarify what Twilight is
and is not, for those interested in its use. Be forewarned, this is
neither a “how-to-get-there” nor a “this-is-what-to-do-when-you-get-there”
essay.

To understand the current views of Twilight, a brief history of the
concept itself must be understood. As stated above, it was originally
presented as a generalization of the darker planes of existence. If one
were to accept this definition, there is an abundance of sub-Twilights
that one may end up working in. This, obviously, makes it quite hard to
compare notes, experiences, or theories between individuals, as no one
is sure exactly what sub-Twilight they have been using. Fortunately for
sorcerers everywhere, the meaning of Twilight, as with all words and
concepts, has changed over time. What it means to be in Twilight has
evolved substantially as the definition of the Sorcery caste itself has
become more clear.

The Twilight of the modern sorcerer is often described as a twisted
wonderland filled with things both strange and magnificent, and rightly
so. In fact, Twilight is both characterized and recognized by its
unearthly distortion. This phenomenon can manifest itself in two major
ways. First, the realm can appear literally blurred, the outlines of
objects merging almost seamlessly with the rest of the realm and
wavering constantly from one position to another, much like looking at
things under rippling water. However, the distortive powers of Twilight
can manifest themselves in another way as well. Scenes can, and
frequently do, take on decidedly absurd characteristics. Mind numbing
sights like immense fields of blood red grass, grown ten feet tall, or
morphing objects such as a model airplane that turns into a winged
clock, then a snarling demonic figure, and then back again, are
commonplace. (Please note that both the field and the plane are merely
examples of what may occur, and as such, will most likely never happen
to the reader.)

The most currently accepted theory that attempts to explain the nature
of Twilight states that the realm is nothing more than a perceptual
distortion of the Astral Plane caused by the emotionally unstable nature
of the Sorcerer. To give an appropriate analogy, this school of
thought says that Twilight is the Astral viewed through a dirty window.
On the surface, this theory has numerous points of credibility. For
one, the Astral Plane is, like Twilight, reactive to both thought and
emotion. Also, the distortion of Twilight is, under this theory,
attributed to emotionality. Since people generally see things through a
very narrow and colored perspective when highly emotional, this seems
quite logical.

However, when one probes deeper, the currently accepted theory
degenerates. For example, one technique quite commonly used in Sorcery,
especially in conjunction with the use of Twilight, is emotional
fueling. Emotional fueling is a way in which one dramatically boosts
the power of a specific spell through high emotion. This technique
requires a substantial amount of control over one’s emotions for it to
be even remotely successful. If the current theory endorses emotional
instability as an explanation for the distortive nature of Twilight, how
can one conceivably use emotional fueling when casting any spell?
Another flaw in the accepted theory of Twilight’s nature is found when
one examines the Astral Plane in conjunction with the supposed dirty
window. If the Astral is sensitive to both thought and emotion, then
everyone is looking through their own dirty window when exploring the
Astral, thus eliminating the distinction between the Astral and the
realm of Twilight altogether. A few have tried to draw a boundary
between the two based on the level of distortion. As this distortion is
an entirely subjective occurrence, there is no conceivable way to place
such a boundary. Thus, the need arises for a new and improved theory
of the nature of Twilight.

This explanation is provided in the Theory of Multiplanar Trance. This
newest theory describes Twilight as being a trance state similar to
those in which one can explore the Astral or the Ethereal planes of
existence. What makes this state unique is that the person in the
trance receives information from numerous planes at the same time. In
this sense, Twilight is more like trying to watch and understand a room
full of television sets all tuned to different channels. To provide an
example, while in Twilight one could be receiving informational input
from the Astral, the Ethereal, and the Physical planes of existence all
at once. The informational incongruities that arise from such a state
explain both the distortion of Twilight and the variable nature of that
distortion. However, practitioners are not limited to merely receving
information. Twilight can be used to manipulate reality, much in the
same manner the Astral can be used to cause change in the physical world.
However, a large problem arises when trying to manipulate the fabric
of existence in such a manner. Your spells have less effect upon the
physical world. Since one is receiving information from various planes,
causing a change from Twilight requires intense concentration and
immense willpower because the desired effect is dispersed throughout the
various planes that the practitioner is linked to. This is where the
emotional fueling technique becomes useful, and in truth, almost vital.

As stated above, it is my hope that this little essay will help
magicians young and old understand the elusive Twilight. To date, the
Theory of Multiplanar Trance is the most complete and accurate
description of Twilight available. In the event that this is found to
be flawed and a new idea emerges, expect another essay. Thanks to
Pharaon for being there to help compile my thoughts. This work would
not be the same without him.. See you in Twilight.

By NightCloak

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