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Psi0nicS

Intent and the Metallic Arts

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Just short post that I wanted to make about how I see/think Intent comes into play with the Metallic Arts.The most clear one that's on the Coppermind, I think, is really cool how you have to have some amount of Intent to want to get better or how Compounding works.

Quote

"... Intention does allow for faster learning and greater skill with the magic.[3] More complex uses, such as Compounding or tapping specific Investiture from a metalmind, also require some measure of intentionality.[3][10]"

Intention, Coppermind

But I felt like this didn't show much in the way of Intent being put in a really active way.

So, how I see it is that (and I'm pretty sure it's a common interpretation) Intent is required to burn, flare, tap,  and store. Since we see stuff like Kelsier teaching Vin that she has to intend to reach in and use that well of power she has inside when she first figures it. And plus, we never actually see any mechanical action that causes Allomancy and Feruchemy to work. It's just "I'm gonna use this" then it works (given they have metals to use, obviously.)
Then we also see Wax needing only the mental intention to "make a steel bubble" and not "push on this." I'm sure there's a bunch of other examples.

Anyway, short post over! ^v^ I just wanted to throw this out here since though I hear people agree sometimes, I don't hear it talked about or mentioned. (AFAIK, at least, so I'd love to hear some WoB or something I might not have seen!)

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Welcome to the Shard! Yup, those are all aspects of Intent for the Metallic Arts. But there are also other aspects as well. Like when Wax in BoM prologue realizes a bullet is in three parts and the blue line splits or how Zinc and Brass use Intent to determine which emotions are affected for example. I find the subtlety of Intent in the Metallic Arts to be very interesting myself. 

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An example that I find might be looked over, and the earliest example I think there is in the series, is when Vin first drank the vial from Kelsier. In this scene, we get two examples of Intent. First is that when she drinks the vial, there is a moment when she feels no change. It's not until she actively looks at what she considers to be her luck storage that is she surprised by the sheer amount of power she was carrying. The second example is when Kelsier tells her of two sources of power. Only once this is said does she distinguish that there are two sources of metal for her to burn. 

Edited by Aspiring Writer
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In addition to some of the examples of intent that previous comments have mentioned, we also can begin to see more of it in soothing and rioting, since they can target specific people and emotions, rather than simply being AoE's that increase or decrease emotion. Debatably, this also extends to seeking, as Vin needed to put effort into discerning one metal from another at first, and when flaring, she had to specifically look for the emotions Breeze was targeting (which even years after having read it, I'm still kind of blown away that she could do that.) While it could be argued that was merely a case of power and precision, the fact she intentionally needed to change her thinking makes it more similar to the whole thing with Wax seeing the bullet as multiple parts, which is definitely a case of intent. Though yes, raw power comes into it.

Personally though, I think that the best example of Intent in the metallic arts is when we've seen allomancers burning the mists and experiencing "phantom metals." Both Vin and Elend are basically out of all their metals when they burn the mists, yet their still able to select which effect they want from the mists, which are essentially acting as a wild card for any metal they could burn. They get to choose which metal(s) the mist acts as, which is pretty clearly (and later confirmed by WoB) to be a use of Intent in the magic system.

Edited by HSuperLee
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I had totally forgotten to mention Rioting and Soothing! ^v^ The most excellent examples of em, I think.

Glad it actually is a thing and I'm just not confused because of its subtlety heh.

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On 17.9.2021 at 5:02 AM, Psi0nicS said:

So, how I see it is that (and I'm pretty sure it's a common interpretation) Intent is required to burn, flare, tap,  and store. Since we see stuff like Kelsier teaching Vin that she has to intend to reach in and use that well of power she has inside when she first figures it. And plus, we never actually see any mechanical action that causes Allomancy and Feruchemy to work. It's just "I'm gonna use this" then it works (given they have metals to use, obviously.)

Well, we were seeing unconcious people burn pewter. And we saw somebody forgetting to stop storing weight.

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@Oltux72 I would respond by saying that people could be ferucheming by habit. The sleeping one is a bit harder to explain. I believe Sazed himself offers the solution that their unconscious mind knows that pewter will help thus will burn it. Sort of how you can heal yourself even when sleeping.

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18 hours ago, DougTheRug said:

@Oltux72 I would respond by saying that people could be ferucheming by habit.

That explanation won't work because the wearer of a medaillion was involved and Waxillium remarked that this specifically happened to inexperienced feruchemists.

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