The idea of the nature of all aspects, laws, entities, and phenomena of reality (aka. absolutely everything and everyone in existence) re-writing itself to match with the majority agreement of all the minds of the universe as to what it should be (consciously or unconsciously).
This premise is similar to "mage: the ascension" except that it really explores what this premise of the aggregate psychic influence of mental activity over reality itself would mean, it would not just mean changing of phenomena in the present, but in the past or future as well (like if enough minds believe the holohoax happened, then the evidence in the present would change to indicate a past where it did happen, and a time-traveler to this past would end up in an alternative universe where it had occurred as claimed, unless most minds in the present also believed most minds in this past believed that the holohaox wasn't happening, which would cause the time-traveler to show up in a past where it didn't happen, but from a present where the past was changed from the present to make the present as if it had occurred back then, because the past consensus would warp reality to make it so that the holohoax wasn't happening the moment the time-traveler arrived), it would be able to affect itself, like altering what realities people's mental power goes towards, or straight up creating or deleting people with minds that could contribute to determining what the aggregate consensus on reality is, and the strange idea of making an exception for one species, normal humans, as the sole contributors to the "vote" on what their reality is going to be like is rather arbitrary, what if all minds, including those of animals and even aliens, were to have a "vote"? last deviation is the idea of belief being the sole form of mental activity that contributes to the nature of reality, it might be the strongest kind of mental activity, but the mind has all sorts of mental phenomena going on, for example, imagination and fantasy or thought and emotion, if belief has an influence, surely these should as well?
The setting is one where the existence of magic means that all minds can warp reality, any kind of mental activity exerts some level of influence upon the nature of existence.
The degree of psychic ability that any mental activity has to alter the world depends on various factors, like how complex the mind is, how close the mind is to what it's affecting, the nature of the mental activity itself, the level of consciousness of the mental activity, the strength of that mental activity, and the duration the mental activity occurs over.
The strongest kind of influence would be the most complex kind of mind believing with the greatest level of certainty and with the greatest force of will, at the most forefront of it's own consciousness, for the longest period of time, about some phenomena occupying the exact same space as itself, something usually describing the a priori knowledge of a mind about it's own existence.
Since the mental activity of every mind exerts some degree of influence over the way things are, multiple minds can be in disagreement with one another, and even one mind can pull existence in multiple conflicting directions at once just by disagreeing with itself, reality can be pulled in multiple directions by the contradictions between the different potential realities that the actual reality is being pulled towards, in this case, the potential reality with the greatest amount of psychic power behind it is the one which becomes the actual reality.
In the rare cases of ties, the nature of some phenomena may be equally disputed as being multiple possibilities that are equally backed by psychic power, and in addition to being supported by perfectly equal amounts of psychic energy, these possibilities are backed by more psychic energy than any other, in such cases, the ties are settled by going through the closest minds to the phenomena and whichever possibility being tied for gets the first bit of psychic power that breaks the tie in favor of one of the tied possibilities determines the nature of the contested phenomena, locality matters (also, most of these exceedingly rare events are resolved immediately without ever being noticed).
Any aspect of reality can be affected by the influence of mental activity, including the minds of others and the mental activity produced by them, in such cases, the affected minds would influence reality in accordance with their new states, thus the consensus could theoretically affect itself.
Since the consensus could create the existence of new minds, or remove existing minds from existence (such as the consensus causing the creation or erasure of people), and the presence or absence of those minds would include the presence or absence of their mental activity, those new minds that are created by the consensus would create a new contributution to it, and those existing minds which are deleted by the consensus would take their contribution with them, in both cases, this would only affect their contributions towards the consensus in the present and going forward, should there be changes made to their past existence by the consensus, their contributions to it in the altered past would only be observable to one who enters this past from the present after the consensus of the past had been retroactively altered, not just by the creation or erasure of minds that existed in the past, but also by the alteration of what way the minds that existed in the past had contributed to the consensus of their time (see below).
The consensus can not only affect the present and future state of reality, but also it's past and future states, should the consensus influence the past to have been a certain way, all of reality would warp itself to be consistent with having come from that version of the past, should the consensus influence the future to be a certain way, the future would warp itself to fulfill this prediction.
This makes time-travel more like stepping into another world entirely, as going back to a past that the consensus of the present had altered is not going back to the "true" past that existed pre-alteration.
Furthermore, if the consensus on the present had altered the consensus of the past, that past consensus would not have any influence on the time-travelers reality before they went back in time, since their minds wouldn't be present to exert any influence on reality, but after doing so, the time-traveler is now in a world where the consensus is different, and therefore reality will warp itself to match with that new consensus, since the time-traveler's influence is going to be easily overpowered by the influence of the minds of everyone else in that version of the past, and if this consensus of the past was created by a consensus of the present, it's possibly a consensus that never created a reality before, thus the time-traveler is trapped in a brand new version of reality without precedent (whether they are aware of this or not).
This is because only minds that are active in the present can contribute to determining the nature of reality at any point in time, a mind that has ceased to generate any activity or which has yet to begin doing so does not have it's contributions factored in to the state of reality at the time.
A time-traveler going to the future would have the same experience, as the existing consensus of the future, which may or may not have been influenced by the consensus of the present, would overpower the time-traveler and leave them trapped in a reality that is produced by that future consensus, just as with the case of travel to the past, time-travel in this setting is potentially like stepping into an alternate reality, however, normally the time-traveler wouldn't notice since the differences between produced realities would not likely be readily noticeable. Still, history is no longer an exact science in such a setting.
7 posts omitted.