The knowledge in this page may not be accessible to the average character, as it may not be common knowledge.
Please consider if your character would know this knowledge first before using it in roleplay.
Author Note: See 'public knowledge' section of psionics lore.
The Remnant lowered himself fully into bed, laying beside her on the ground, head propped up to the stars above,"To cheat death a second time is a beautiful thing- You've done it before, I don't see why now would be any different."
"The soul is simply able to take multiple mediums.. of conscious substance that is rewritten from our presence. Mediums like our brains, or Visitant matter, or neuromorphic cores, or esprit.. all are carriers of the soul. Some mediums are easier to be inhabited and 'rewritten' by souls than others; Visitant souls can seamlessly move across their medium with little effort, for example,"
she explained, her golden eyes reflecting the starfield above them. They seemed glazed over, like she was spacing out as she spoke."Mediums such as human brains are slower to accept the soul's changes. The phenomenon of neuroplasticity, for example, is a rather slow process. The medium changes to suit the soul. Using sabotage, however, changes to the medium can be forced. The soul can be changed forcibly, either our own, or of other's."
A low hum of agreement echoed from below as she finished, the Remnant crossing his arms beneath his head. He didn't intend to stop her explanation, somewhat at peace being taught again.
"The body is controlled by the medium, and the medium is controlled by the soul- sometimes vice-versa,"
she said,"My body is dying. But that does not mean I have to die."
Psionics is a dangerous tool- both to others and the psion itself. This is evident most in psionic awakenings which can have potentially unintended effects, but there is also another aspect of psionics that represents a more subtle, looming danger that can manifest over time as a psion becomes honed in their craft: dissonance.
At its core, dissonance is the incompatibility between an anomalous mind and a non-anomalous brain and body. As psions awaken new and more complex abilities, more neural traces in their brain become anomalous. This causes psions to acquire different amounts of dissonance as they develop abilities, which can cause effects with increasing severity the more dissonance a psion has. Dissonance isn't just cuil sickness; it is a true incompatibility between a psion's anomalous nature and their own body. As such, dissonance affects organisms regardless of cuil tolerance; cuil walkers and even most hyperspace organisms are affected alike by dissonance.
A number of factors are involved in what raises a psion's dissonance; the largest factor is the number of abilities a psion has, but the complexity of the psion's ability also matters. More complex abilities that involve the use of multiple subjects or components will raise dissonance more, whereas simpler abilities such as many ESP abilities may not raise dissonance as much. Abilities with subjects that the psion has less aptitude in (such as a metacreator developing a neuroinvasion ability) also tend to raise dissonance more.
The effects of dissonance vary from physical ailments to mental disorders and even psionic disorders, and becomes more severe the more dissonance a psion has. A psion with maximum dissonance will typically die and may even become a defiant. Dissonance can also cause more longterm effects such as terminal illness or symptoms associated with chronic cuil sickness.
Dissonance can have worse effects if the psion is a partial metanoid that relies on a partial brain for psionics. The physical effects of dissonance may also weaken a character's non-psionic combat ability, forcing them to rely more on their psionic abilities.
For most psions, dissonance isn't much of an issue; a psion with a few abilities may have to deal with some of it, but a little dissonance isn't likely be fatal. Some psions, however, choose to immerse themselves entirely in their craft in their arcane ambitions by developing a myriad of different abilities and truly ascending beyond the limits of the mind. These rare few face the inevitable reality that is the mortal body: at its very core, the fleshy brain cannot cope with what these few consider to be psionic mastery. Weakened and damaged by the effects of dissonance, in order to continue their pursuit these few must find a means of escaping dissonance altogether.
There are a number of possible ways to become mostly immune or resistant to the effects of dissonance, all depending on the psion's creativity. Entirely psionic beings such as flux constructs are immune to dissonance, and it is possible to deal with the physical effects of dissonance by altering the body or acquiring a new body altogether.
All, however, come with a price.