Meishodo Amulet

Meishodo Amulet

Meishodo, or Name Magic, was a magical discipline practiced by the Unicorn Clan. Unlike traditional Rokugani magic, meishodo did not call upon the kami. Meishodo instead used the name of a thing uttered at its creation. [1]

Origins Edit

Meishodo was created outside of Rokugan and was first encountered by the Ki-Rin Clan in the City of Sorcerers, Laramun, in 152 IC. It was discovered by Iuchi, who presented it to Shinjo. Although Shinjo did not discourage his use of meishodo, she told Iuchi that it was only meant for mortals and that she could not listen to him talk about it or study it herself. [2] [3]

Iuchi himself had difficulty understanding and working with meishodo, but upon his death his apprentice, Iuchi Nobane, took up the study and vastly improved it. [4] Credit for this was also given to Iuchi Tsubei, another shugenja considered to be Iuchi's greatest student. [5]

Qolat Manipulation Edit

It was also the Kolat that made sure the Ki-Rin learned meishodo, being a form of gaijin magic which did not use the kami, linked to the Celestial Order, but the Elements themselves. In doing so, the Clan would move away from the influence of the Kami. [6]

Functions Edit

Instead of reading the meishodo spell from a scroll like traditional shugenja, a practitioner of meishodo held a trinket with the spell bound to it and simply focuses on the trinket, which immediately created the spell effect. The advantage of this over traditional spells was its incredible speed, as traditional spells might take a long time to prepare and cast. [4]

Meishodo had its drawbacks, however. While any spell that made use of the kami could be replicated as meishodo, more complex spells could not be created unless the practitioner was adept in the spell's element. Also, traditional spells could be memorized by shugenja but meishodo could not be. Thus a meishodo user must be holding the meishodo trinket any time he wished to use its power. Finally, a traditional shugenja might increase the casting time of his spell or used some other technique to alter the spell he was casting, such as causing a healing spell to heal a greater number of wounds or causing a spell to affect more targets than it normally would. A meishodo practitioner could not do these things, a meishodo spell was what it was at its creation. [4] The only exception to this was the Horiuchi Shugenja school [7] and those of the Iuchi family born with the phenomenon known as Blood of the Jinn. [8]

Views on Meishodo in Rokugan Edit

Meishodo was viewed as strange and even blasphemous by the other clans, as it did not call upon the kami. This was viewed as disrespectful to the kami, who were revered within Rokugani culture. When it was brought back to Rokugan and shown to the Emperor, it was decried by the Phoenix Clan but sponsored by the Crane Clan, who were fascinated by magic that bore some similiarty to their own tsangusuri. The Emperor proclaimed meishodo to be acceptable and the purview of the Unicorn and any they chose to share it with. [4]

Stagnant Edit

The Iuchi adapted meishodo to the Rokugani belief system; however, they found a problem. Their own understanding of Rokugani magic has faded and they had found themselves "cut off" from the tide of magical energies. The Iuchi did not reveal this to the rest of Rokugan neither to the rest of their Clan. [4]

Horiuchi Shugenja Edit

The Horiuchi Shugenja researched the magical art of meishodo and made several new advances. They overcame the "barrier" between the gaijin magic and the native Rokugan practice of kami worship. In the past, those who had set themselves to the study of meishodo found themselves unable to cast magic by importuning the kami, and vice versa. But the Horiuchi overcame this deficiency, and meishodo could be cast through charms, which were less powerfull than meishodo magic cast from amulets. [9]

Iuchi Shugenja Edit

After the family's destruction caused by a vicious plague that spread through the Empire during the Destroyer War, the knowledge of Meishodo survived and was carried forward by the Iuchi Shugenja. [10]

External Links Edit


  1. Way of the Unicorn, p. 116
  2. Way of the Unicorn, p. 33
  3. Unexpected Allies, p. 32
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Way of the Unicorn p. 117
  5. Secrets of the Unicorn, p. 46
  6. Merchant's Guide to Rokugan, p. 17
  7. School Update Project, Part III
  8. Secrets of the Unicorn, p. 49
  9. Way of the Shugenja, p. 74
  10. Book of Earth, p. 66
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