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Realmatic Theory

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Realmatic Theory refers to the structure of the Cosmere. There are three realms: Physical, Cognitive, and Spiritual.

I have come to see that each power has three aspects: a physical one, which can be seen in the creations made by Ruin and Preservation; a spiritual one in the unseen energy that permeates all of the world; and a cognitive one in the minds which controlled that energy.
Sazed's earliest experiences after his ascension.[1]
All things exist in three Realms, Gaotona. Physical, Cognitive, Spiritual. The Physical is what we feel, what is before us. The Cognitive is how an object is viewed and how it views itself. The Spiritual Realm contains an object’s soul— its essence— as well as the ways it is connected to the things and people around it.
Shai discussing Forgery with Gaotona[2]

Physical Realm[edit]

Main article: Physical Realm

Of the three realms, the Physical Realm is the most readily understood as it behaves in much the same way that our universe does. It is the natural world as we experience it with our senses, consisting of space and time and adhering to empirical scientific law. Most Cosmere works take place primarily in the Physical Realm.

Cognitive Realm[edit]

Main article: Cognitive Realm

The Cognitive Realm is the world of thought and perception. It is also referred to by the name Shadesmar, particularly on Roshar.[3] The nature and appearance of objects in this realm are shaped by the views of people and even the objects themselves. The environment itself changes from one world to the next, often exhibiting features characteristic of that world. Investiture, including that within souls, glows visibly within the Cognitive Realm.

While time appears to flow normally, space is also warped by perception. The realm exists as a flat plane and the distance between worlds is significantly contracted, so that travelling from one world to the next by foot is possible. Indeed, Worldhoppers generally make use of this realm to move between worlds. Travelling between the Physical and the Cognitive Realms may be accomplished at Perpendicularities.

Spiritual Realm[edit]

Main article: Spiritual Realm

Little is currently known about the Spiritual Realm, which contains the souls, or essences, of people, objects, and ideas. It is believed by some on Roshar that the Spiritual Realm is a place of absolute truth--where things exist in their pure forms.[Citation needed] Connection plays a very important role in the Spiritual Realm, where space and time have little meaning. [Citation needed]

Most of the power that makes up the Shards exists in the Spiritual Realm.[Citation needed]

Notes[edit]

  1. The Hero of Ages chapter 57 epigraph
  2. The Emperor's Soul - Day 12
  3. Shadesmar is just a rough translation of "Cognitive Realm" in the language of whoever first found out about it.
    17th Shard forums - 2013-10-05
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