A Beginners Guide to Metaphysical Architecture
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We have all heard of architecture that bends reality in some way, and thus creates magical places that dazzle the mind and create unique experiences. Such places are sometimes more useful than any place firmly grounded in reality could ever be. Just look at the Wanderers' Library. A centre of knowledge containing such a volume of information would be unthinkable if the rules of reality were firmly asserted everywhere, but the Library does exist, thanks to reality's flimsy nature. These places range from the non euclidean city of R'lyeh and the Wanderers' Library, over places like King Hethub's flying garden and Daedalus' Labyrinth, to a variety of haunted houses. It is often overlooked that these places are similar in nature1, but they all function by the same basic principles.

But how can one create such a place? More importantly, how does one control what kind of place such a creation becomes? In this short work I will share some of the fundamentals of metaphysical architecture, which I have learned from long years of experimentation and research2.

The Importance of the Genius Loci :

It is, first of all, important to understand that a strong genius loci3 is absolutely necessary, in order to create any kind of meaningful metaphysical architecture. Every genius loci is a reality bender, though most of them are too weak to bend reality in any meaningful way, if reality is stable around them. This means that when you break local reality4, the genius loci will take active control of the place.

Without a purpose that the place understands, it would never bend in a way that anyone wants it to. Have you ever wondered why the Library's air is never humid, or why the Library's floors are never made of lava? It is not because the Library could not bend to these states, it is because it does not want to5. The Library knows its purpose and bends to better fulfil it.

King Hethub's flying garden was a nice garden long before it took flight, and had thus gained a strong genius loci. Had it not possessed a spirit of solemn relaxation it would not have ended up as a series of flying islands, no matter how broken local reality was. As it were, only a minor upset in reality was necessary to make the garden fly, because its genius loci was strong. The strength of the genius loci made it easier to break local reality, and the character of the genius loci made it useful6.

If one were to weaken the structure of reality in a place without purpose, say ,for example, a cave system never seen by any sentient creature, it would create a place that would not make any sense whatsoever, simply shifting aimlessly. One could not traverse this place, for it would not care for leaving traversable passages. One probably would not find anything more, or even as, interesting or beautiful in such a place as one could find in any scrapyard firmly placed in reality.

It should be said that a place entirely without genius loci is hard to find. Any place that comes into contact with a lot of people7, will quickly develop a genius loci.

Do not be deceived about the stability a places identity possesses. King Hethub's flying garden for example, was used as the keep of the castle below it when war fell on the lands. This led to the genius loci, and thus the place, changing from a tranquil garden to a hostile place of bloodshed. It is worth noting that, even though it was conquered many times, it is now an almost unassailable fortress, that has not seen a single intruder survive for over a hundred years.

The lesson here is that even a strong genius loci can change, and thus the place can change not only in shape but in nature8.

Breaking Reality :

The matter of breaking reality is a dangerous one. If you overdo it, then you might just rip the place out of reality entirely. And if you misjudged the genius loci, then the place might turn out quite the way you want9. Because of this it is recommended to slowly break reality, while keeping a close eye on the changes this causes10. As stated before, every genius loci is a weak reality bender. In order to create, what we might call metaphysical architecture, the genius loci has to gain control over the place. While this can be achieved by strengthening the genius loci, it is more commonly achieved by breaking reality.

Reality has a fabric, and reality has bones. Bending reality means manipulating the fabric. When you bend reality, reality will continuously push back. Imagine it as a piece of cloth strapped over a wooden skeleton. When you push or pull on the cloth then it will stretch, but it will always, at least somewhat, regain its previous shape. If you break the wooden supports, then it will not do that any more. Your ability to shape the cloth will only be limited by how many arms you have.

In regards to creating metaphysical architecture, this means that one has to break the bones of local reality in order to allow the genius loci to take control. This can be achieved in a variety of ways. Skilled reality benders can usually help with such matters, so the usual solution to this problem is simply hiring some reality benders. Another solution is simply using a lot of people11. This only rarely works, because it is way more difficult than those that attempt it usually think.

The issue with both of these approaches is that both of them can corrupt the genius loci. Skilled and powerful reality benders can usually keep this to a minimum12, but attempting to use massive amounts of people usually fails because of this. In other words, putting the amount of people necessary to break the bones of local reality, into a place and state in which they will successfully do so, will have a tremendous effect on the genius loci. If your method of pushing people to exert their reality bending potential, in order to break the bones of reality, involves torture13, then you will inevitably create a terrible place14.

All of that being said I recommend that you do the responsible thing and hire reality benders. I know it's not cheap but it has a high rate of success.

A third option is a reality thrasher. I am not an expert on reality thrashers, so I will only touch on them briefly here15. It is hard to interact with the fabric and bones of reality by purely mechanical means, but apparently it can be done. A reality thrasher only slightly interacts with the fabric and bones of reality, but it does it often. It basically chips away at the bones of reality until they break.

The main issue with these machines is that they are difficult to build, and thus expensive. Also a subpar machine might be prone to malfunction16. All in all they are a valid tool for destabilising reality, but they are neither particularly easy to come by nor to operate.

The Three States :

Lastly, one has to understand three important states that a place can be in. The first is known as "the real state" and is self-explanatory. The second is called "the tipping point", and the third is generally called "the symbiotic state".

The tipping point is the point at which the genius loci is stronger than the corrective power of reality. If one were to simply slightly batter the bones of reality, and then do nothing more, then reality would heal, so to speak. If however the structure of reality is weakened to a point where the genius loci can further break it faster than it can heal, then that place has passed the tipping point. It is no longer a normal place, but one heavily influenced by it's metaphysical identity. This is the point at which you can usually stop whatever you have been doing in order to destabilise reality.

The symbiotic state is the state in which reality is only as stable as it is because it being stable aids the genius loci. That usually means that things like gravity are there because reality is still somewhat present, not because the genius loci makes it be there. The symbiotic state exists because a reasonable genius loci will usually want the place it controls to be usable by creatures that are used to the laws of physics being present. Willing the laws of physics into existence is something that would require a lot of effort on the part of the genius loci. That is why the genius loci will usually tolerate some aspects of reality to remain in its domain, instead fully removing it17.

I have now told you of most of the basic concepts surrounding Metaphysical Architecture, and you should now be able to create amazing places, should you poses the resources to do so.
If you are an eldritch deity, then I have to inform you that, while the basic concepts still apply, most of the practical advice will be useless to you, as you simply wanting such a place to exist will usually create it.

I wish you all good luck, with all of your projects.

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