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I remember my father's fear and anger when he discovered I was left-handed. Just a tiny child, I suffered the futile tortures and agonies of his crazed correction therapies. In vain was it explained to him that while all occult wizards are left-handed, but a tiny fraction of left-handed people turn to the occult. He
wouldn't listen – perhaps it was his stubbornness more than his cruelty that was really responsible for
my future path.
— Memoirs of the former Lord Leidarth, Occultist of the 9th Degree
Leave ye not the shadows, ye who dabble in the Hidden Art.
Get thee to the gallows, where thief and murderer leave their heart. Seek ye not in open roads, where common man can make his way, For the power of our ancient codes suffers not clear light of day.
So state the opening lines of the infamous Occult Creed. Of unknown provenance, the poem ranks among the primary causes for the dire reputation of the mysterious Path of Occultism. Poorly understood and subject to widespread misinterpretation, this ancient and highly potent lore is commonly called Dark Magic (many whisper it is a gateway to the Dark Gods themselves), and yet its students have rarely been found responsible for any nefarious activities in our lands, despite their persecution.
In fact, occultists try to remain hidden not just to avoid the judging eyes of society, but because their "Art", as they call it, thrives behind closed doors and wilts under public gaze. Besides, it is probable that the se- crets of the Occult are jealously guarded more to maintain their exclusive prestige than out of fear that evil men will misuse them. Indeed, as we see in the final lines of the Creed, Occultism has always been a morally neutral Path:
If ye master tears, poison, soil of grave, and still avoid the noose
All the power of Darkness will be thy slave – but only ye can find its use.
— From the Dictionnaire Magique, published anonymously but thought to be authored by François L'Arouet, known liberal and enemy of the Church
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