Houston by Night: 1995 to the End of Days
The Dreamspeakers are a Tradition of mages consisting of individuals who practice shamanism, communing with spirits as part of their magic and existing as intermediaries between the Mortal World and the Spirit World. It is one of the most diverse Traditions, with those representing the ancient cultures of African, Native American, Inuit, and Aboriginal Australian societies standing alongside practitioners of Shinto, independent spiritual savants, and descendants of other forgotten tribes and civilizations. Though originally shoehorned into a single group by the other, Eurocentric Traditions, the disparate cultures within the Dreamspeakers have found common ground in their respect for and dedication to the balance between physical and spiritual reality. As the Gauntlet has grown thicker and the Spirit World more dangerous, the shamans’ duties have become increasingly harder. But whereas other mages tend to overlook matters of spirit and Sleepers forget them altogether, the Dreamspeakers were born to walk the middle round, to see and hear what others do not, and fill roles still very much needed in the modern world.
That Creation is essentially animistic is central to Dreamspeaker philosophy and magic, and in fact, tends to reflects their daily lives. As shamans, they possess the ability to freely interact with the Spirit World to one degree or another, and are often called upon to resolve conflicts between spirits or seek solutions to problems that can be felt in material and spiritual reality. Dreamspeakers realize that each reflects the other, and that by acting upon the Spirit World they can perform feats that are considered magic in the Material World. This can take the form of direct communication with spirits capable of making the desired changes, but just as often makes use of the Dreamspeakers understanding of spirit behavior and rules to know what rituals and acts upon the Material World will invoke the appropriate response from the Spirit World.
Tools and Practices Edit
The most important part of shamanic magic is placing oneself in the correct state of mind to be able to perceive and influence the boundary separating the Spirit and Material World. Just about anything that helps a mage reach this ecstatic state of consciousness can serve as a focus, including drugs, exercise, music and dance, or simple meditation. Some Dreamspeakers believe that external tools are a crutch to be avoided or that artificially manufactured drugs and technological devices are counterproductive, but this is a matter of personal preference. When it comes to invoking spirits, anything that grants the shaman connection and power over the spirit in question can help, such as a symbol or crafted representation, names and other words of power, or rituals sacred to the spirit. Dreamspeakers are also cognizant of the fact that every tool has a spirit of its own that can be called upon to aid their magic.
The Dreamspeakers are a recent Tradition, being formed as a dumping ground for tribal mages by the Europeans. However, they are heirs the primal magic of ancient shaman. Their ancestors were the Apache, Cherokee, Iroquois, Zuni, Ojibwa, Hopi, Navajo, Inuit, Athapaska and Salish of the Americas, and the Fulani, Egyptians, Shona, Dogon, Ashanti, Masaii, Ibo, Zulu, Himba and San-!Kung peoples of Africa. They saw the rise of the Aztecs, Toltecs, Olmecs, Zapotecs and Mayans, of the Inca, Cagaba, Chibcha, Caribs, Musica, Quechua and Aymara. They were the primordial shamans of Siberia, China and Lappland, and the Mongols, Koreans, Hmong and Mien hill tribes of Thailand, the Ainu of Japan, followers of Wektu Telu in Indonesia and tribal Filipinos. They are the heirs to many a diverse spiritual ways from around the world.
Early History Edit
Dark Ages Edit
Can be associated with the Spirit-Talkers.
LogoTradDreamspeakersSCDream-speakers, c. 1466.
IanWatsonAdded by IanWatson
The Dream-Speakers were officially formed as a Tradition in 1466 at the Grand Convocation. Naioba, an African dream priestess, and Star-of-Eagles, a Powhatan medicine man, saw the Tradition as a brotherhood of shaman. The Europeans saw it as a dumping ground for tribal magi; Native Americans from North and South America, the tribes of Africa’s jungles and savannas, Australian Aborigines, Lappish and Siberian shaman, and the kahuna of the Hawai’ians, Maori and Polynesians were all lumped together in a single Tradition. Many magi, such as the Ngoma, saw this as racism and left the Convocation in disgust.
Naioba and Star-of-Eagles assumed joint leadership of the new Tradition until Naioba’s assassination. However, the Tradition suffered greatly as the ages of Exploration, Colonialism and Imperialism destroyed their peoples. The Spanish conquest decimated the Aztecs and Incas, and spread smallpox amongst the Mound Builders. Likewise, the Portuguese slave trade decimated much of West Africa. In response, nearly half the Dreamspeakers left the Council of Nine, led by a delegation of Iroquois medicine men.
Victorian Era Edit
During the Victorian era, many tribal shaman found their lands being conquered and their people exploited. Native Dreamspeakers fought alongside the Lakota Nation, the Haitians, the Congolese, the Zulu, Afghan hill tribes, Australian Aborigines, and the Rhodesians. Many joined movements such as the Ghost Dance.
There was also a growing number of European Dreamspeakers. Bolstered by the spiritualism craze and neo-Paganism, these mediums communed with ghosts, faeries and elemental spirits.
Modern Times Edit
Many Dreamspeakers are nomadic, but the Tradition as a whole still maintains several Chantries where the old ways can be preserved in peace. Turtle Council House, the Dreamspeaker subrealm in Horizon, was one such place, combining a Native American, African and Australian sub-Realm. Other prominent Dreamspeaker holdings include the Lodge of the Gray Squirrel (a Native American Chantry), Vali Shallar (a lost Mayan temple in the jungles of Peru, shared with the Akashic Brotherhood), Yambula’kitino (a lush jungle Realm used by the Baruti to teach African culture), Onikari (a Cherokee lodge near Asheville, North Carolina, watched over by Uktena Garou) and Njia Panda (a multicultural Realm created by the Keepers of the Sacred Flame to preserve their homelands).