1. dmdutcher says:

    Not sure most mainstream fantasy uses innate magic; if you read the genre, you’ll find plenty of spiritual magic too. Maybe even Biblical in the sense of getting magic from malevolent spiritual powers. I think they tend more to the pantheistic. Ironically one of the most Christian genres in this sense is classic sword and sorcery-usually the heroes never use magic, and magic is portrayed often as the harmful domain of the villains the hero-barbarian fights.

    Elsa is a weird example too, mostly because Frozen is a poorly written movie. In one sense, yeah her powers fall under innate magic. Kind of like a female version of Iceman from the X-men; Elsa as mutant. But her powers soon get ridiculous in what they can do, like the ability to put ice into a person’s heart or mind, or creating sentient beings and instilling them with rationality and souls. That movie played fast and loose with its explanations.

    • Good points! I used Elsa because Frozen is one of the few times they stopped to explain the source of the magic. Usually, in Disney movies, they just accept it. It really is odd, if you stop to think about it, that Elsa can apparently create life, but they were probably hoping people would just go along with it and have fun. If you want a singing snowman in the movie …

  2. I liked this short series!  Good conclusion.  This is how I finally acknowledged and enjoyed Harry Potter as acceptable fiction…I realized that my personal dividing line between “inherent” magic and “acquired” magic was not crossed – the magical people in HP were born with their abilities!

  3. Tyrean says:

    Thank you for this detailed and thoughtful explanation. This is an area I’ve struggled with as a writer – to show that the “fantastical” elements in my fantasy books are not portraying occult or evil magic. In The Champion Trilogy world that I’ve created, there are only two types of power – the non-natural power brought by evil means, or the power from the Lord – which is spiritual because the power comes from God through a willing believer.

  4. Kessie says:

    Well-reasoned, well-researched explanation! I’ve made this same argument, patiently, over and over to a great many people. It’s like the argument that yes, dragons can be good guys, because they’re not all symbols of Satan. (Had that argument, too.)

    In my urban fantasy series, everybody is born with one innate power, but there’s elementals running around who can grant you more, in certain circumstances. I love different magic systems, and people come up some awesome stuff. I personally don’t care whether it comes from God or Satan–in fantasy, all I care about is how it affects the hero. (That’s one reason I gave up on Wheel of Time–Rand was screwed because the Source was tainted, and it wasn’t fair.)

  5. Toi Thomas says:

    Glad I found part two, even after all this time. What a great conclusion to this series. It clearly expresses a feeling I’ve had for some time, but didn’t quite to how to explain. Thank you.

  6. Jeff says:

    Im very tempted by the occult, and this article led me to play a game with “harmless” fantasy magic, and that led me to give in to some of the demonic tempations fantasy gives me(it only happened in my mind, praise God!). That’s probably on me though for not being discerning. Maybe im just weak to the occult and fantasy is bad for me? Maybe im just too weak in my faith? I have very weak faith.

What do you think?