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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
6008 Posts

Posted - 29 Sep 2020 :  02:43:40  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Which leads to a further question: do undead have souls?

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5319 Posts

Posted - 29 Sep 2020 :  07:15:50  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
For me the answer is no.

I decided a soul is just positive energy.

A little bit of positive energy is enough to give life some semblance of life to something. So you can animate an object with the tiniest spark of positive energy.

Plants have a bit more positive energy. Animals have a bit more than that and humanoids have the most.

Now positive energy must feed off life experience and grow and replicate itself, that is why when people live and do lots of things they advance in levels.
Positive energy also retains some of that information and experience so that when you die your soul remembers pieces about its existence (the greater your experience, the larger the amount of positive energy, the more it remembers).

When you clone a soul it breaks a piece off and that piece of positive energy can start forming it's own experiences and growing itself. When you have children it breaks a piece off the souls of both parents (a much smaller piece) and that child makes it's own experiences and grows its soul larger.

Undead of course are created with negative energy, which is anathema to positive energy.
In the case of skeletons and zombies where the soul has already departed, the negative energy feeds animates the body like an automaton.

In ghouls and ghosts they must have enough negative energy to form their own anti soul of sorts but one with little more than animal intelligence.

Vampires infect a body with negative energy that feeds off and destroys the soul of the host, creating a mimic negative energy version of that soul.

Liches trap the positive energy soul in a phylactery and slowly drain it.


I'm gonna guess positive energy is very unstable and difficult to work with normally unless it has been tempered into a soul by living. So souls are highly prized as being one of the few workable sources of positive energy (everything else just explodes or burns). So outsiders really want this stuff.

Negative energy can form the anti version of souls but it's a longer, slower process (zombies left alone in a crypt for centuries developing their own little quirks. The results are always more feral and destructive as it hunters to feed on positive energy because negative energy is not self sustaining on the material plane (which is powered by positive energy).


That's just how I play it. Rather than make the soul something different I chose to make it just a basic building block of dnd life.

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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2551 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2020 :  22:07:45  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
May depend on the undead? Don't liches have phylacteries for their souls, whereas lower level undead (like zombies) wouldn't, as their souls have already moved on?

Sweet water and light laughter
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
9754 Posts

Posted - 12 Oct 2020 :  23:07:55  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

Which leads to a further question: do undead have souls?

-- George Krashos



Oh, I hadn't seen this question until Corellonsdevout responded. Yeah, like they said, I feel it depends on the type of undead. I personally feel that liches DO have souls that they've tied up in phylacteries. Its intrinsic to their design. There's some other undead which seem similar (for instance, skeletal warriors... the ones who are tied to a circlet which seems to contain their souls... they seem to be like that. Later iterations of death knights also are more lich like). Skeleons and zombies don't. Now, when you get to a creature like a mummy and a vampire, that's when it gets a little more nebulous.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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PattPlays
Learned Scribe

201 Posts

Posted - 13 Oct 2020 :  07:04:44  Show Profile  Visit PattPlays's Homepage Send PattPlays a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

Which leads to a further question: do undead have souls?

-- George Krashos



Oh, I hadn't seen this question until Corellonsdevout responded. Yeah, like they said, I feel it depends on the type of undead. I personally feel that liches DO have souls that they've tied up in phylacteries. Its intrinsic to their design. There's some other undead which seem similar (for instance, skeletal warriors... the ones who are tied to a circlet which seems to contain their souls... they seem to be like that. Later iterations of death knights also are more lich like). Skeleons and zombies don't. Now, when you get to a creature like a mummy and a vampire, that's when it gets a little more nebulous.

I think alongside all of the spells involved in the lichdom ritual go toward the extreme effort of preserving your soul in the transition, but I'd bet you would need a hell of a lot of self-obsession and ego to literally fuel yourself off of the souls of others and not slowly become a warped hating vortex of the suffering you inflicted upon others.

Also, hell yes souls and positive energy conversation? How ironic this all came from thread necromancy..

..as for Bane.. has he done anything any new player would care about? My archives have no data for him since one hundred and fourty years ago.

:The world's greatest OOTA fan/critic: :"Powder kegs within powder kegs!": :Meta-Dimensional Cheese: :Why is the Wand of Orcus just back?: :We still don't know the nature of Souls and the Positive Energy Plane: :PC on profile, Aldritch Elpyptrat Maxinfield: :Helljumpers, Bungie.net: :Rock Hard Gladiator, RIP Fluidanim, RIP Pluto: :IRC lives:


https://thisisstorytelling.wordpress.com

T_P_T
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1775 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2020 :  21:20:07  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Master Krashos,

quote:
Which leads to a further question: do undead have souls?


I think this is interestingly considered when judged against three RL philosophers quotes about the soul, and then considering what happens when someone in the Realms dies.

  • "The body will not be identical to the soul. The soul is the form of a natural body having life potentially the soul is not separable from the body" (Aristotle, De Anima)
  • "So that what I say is to the soul by which I am what I am is entirely distinct from the body, and it is even easier to know him (Rene Descartes, Discourse on Method)


I really think those are interesting considerations when contemplating the nature of undeath and a soul.

quote:
May depend on the undead? Don't liches have phylacteries for their souls, whereas lower level undead (like zombies) wouldn't, as their souls have already moved on?


That is also a great point too, Great Reader CorellonsDevout. I mean, it would seem to be that the notion that Descartes had would be correct. The soul is separate.

Best regards,






Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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Delnyn
Senior Scribe

USA
403 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2020 :  18:51:39  Show Profile Send Delnyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would not take the "Undead" trilogy too seriously. Assuming the Dread Ring ritual would have worked as Szass Tam thought it would, surely Bane would have detected Szass Tam's attempt - he already promised his soul to Bane after 1,000 years - and seized his soul before the ritual finished. One would also think Larloch kept a close eye on our most esteemed Zulkir of Necromancy after that deal with Thakorsil's Seat and the Death Moon Orb. He could have squashed Szass Tam's plans -and Szass Tam himself - before Bane lifted a finger.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by keftiu

Damn, this entire thread and nobody mentioned that his was the state religion of Thay for all of 4e, helping Szass Tam consolidate power?



On a sidenote for that, so if one wants to destroy Szass Tam, one needs to bring other religions back to Thay in theory, such that he reneges his deal and has to give up his soul? Just a thought. Then again, I've been proposing that Mystra's resurgence has to do with Tam's failed ritual draining power into her and that the whole "Tome of Fastrin the Delver" was an elaborate lie that confused even him. It possibly even had some involvement with kicking off the second sundering.





Edited by - Delnyn on 14 Nov 2020 18:53:04
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1775 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  01:38:03  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Senior Scribe Delnyn,

quote:
...he already promised his soul to Bane after 1,000 years - and seized his soul before the ritual finished.


This really begs the question: exactly how many times did Szass Tam try to thwart any and all efforts by Lord Bane, and when Bane died, did that restart the 1,000 years?

Best regards,






Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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