I have three types of magic in my world, this unnamed type, spiritual and arcane. All magic types can be used exclusively to create magic.

For this emotional magic it would generate from any heightened emotions but can positively or negatively affect the other types of magic. This energy can also be generated in others that are the driving cause of a high emotional state in another although negative emotions generate more.

Because of these things this magic type is notoriously used and relied upon by demons and is the driving influence in them being 'evil' although not all demons are evil.

For additional (but undetailed) information, arcane uses mana which is passively generated from souls and there's spiritual which is generated with worship and/or a combination of fear and respect.

[Edit 2: The magic types' particular magic energy will be refereed to as spiritual energy and arcane energy or similar.]

With this in mind I don't want to call this magic 'demonic' magic as it isn't even remotely exclusive to them (and would be attributed to magic of demonic design). Neither do I want to call this 'chaos' magic as I don't really feel it fits.

I especially do not wish to unify my magic types as I prefer them to be considered three separate systems that merely interact with each other to produce more complex results.

Edit: I need to add That I can't change it to dark or black, as I would also change spiritual to light (though they don't seem to theme that well with how they work) , because of my elements. These are Earth, Lightning, Air, Water, Fire, Frost, Light and Dark.

Apologies if this is in the wrong place.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ What to name your specific magic system has nothing to do with World Building AFAICT. Why can't you just call it "emotional magic"? $\endgroup$
    – Aify
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:16
  • $\begingroup$ call it dark magic? $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:17
  • $\begingroup$ @Aify Sorry as far as I could tell this was the place I would ask this but I could be wrong, I don't want to call tit emotional magic because it doesn't seem to fit some kind of theme with the others. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:23
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I vote for Willbending $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:34
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Asking what to name something is extremely opinion based. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:55

3 Answers 3


"Pathos" or "pathic" magic

The Greek word πάθος páthos means "suffering", but in English derivatives it tends to mean "emotion" in general. It's the root of sympathy, empathy, telepathy, and so on.

In particular, Aristotle (in his Rhetotic) used it as the name of one of the three methods of persuasion: pathos included appeals to emotion and ad hominem attacks, ways of pulling at your audience's emotions to make them feel in their heart that you're right. Metaphors and anecdotes were important parts of pathos persuasion.

The usual adjective form would be pathetic from παθητικός pathēticós, but that has different connotations in English. (Compare the meaning in other languages, though, e.g. Beethoven's famous Sonata Pathétique.) So I would recommend pathic (by analogy with empathic, telepathic) or simply pathos.

  • $\begingroup$ I was going to answer Empathy but I see your answer mostly covers that already. I'd go with Empathy over Pathos though as it's more immediately familiar and obvious to most people while still being a little mysterious / uncommon. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 23:24
  • $\begingroup$ @adaliabooks The main issue with using empathy, and drives me crazy, is that it has highly positive connotations and I don't want to emphasise either positive or negative emotions. As usual I could just be wrong and I may need to ask about that some where else. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 23:48

Passionate magic.

From the oxford English dictionary: Esp. of a person: susceptible to or readily swayed by passions or emotions; easily moved to strong feeling; of changeable mood, volatile.

Of a person: affected with passion or strong feeling; dominated by intense emotion; ardently enthusiastic. Also: zealously devoted, attached, or loyal.

A thing influenced by emotion describes this magic. Of note: passion and passionate in common parlance connotes romance and love. But one can passionately hate as well.


What you're describing seems closest to what D&D (and many other created worlds) refer to as sorcery which is a force that comes from within and is created by willpower (or in this case emotion). I would recommend looking at something like that.

Sorcery might not be the correct name for your emotional magic however, as it sounds more like bewitchment or enchanting (the spells on people kind) because it feeds off emotions. You could even call it something as cliche as wizardry because that wouldn't necessarily box you into a corner and as you've already decided to create your own magic system wizardry (or similar) could be defined to mean anything you want.

One final alternative would be to make up a word or series of words to represent this form of magic.

Best of luck

  • $\begingroup$ This is extremely helpful assuming no one has an idea that fits closer and that it shows me more that i need to clarify. The only reason I don't botch together a word is because I wanted a word that conveyed what it was and did in English without being literal aka emotional. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 22:47

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .