Origin of Arcane Magic

So, I'm making a homebrew campaign that takes place in a world where magic used to exist but the gods unanimously took away any of it they had domain over from mortals (i.e. Divine magic). So my current mission is finding what types of magic the gods would be able to directly interfere with. I've found that there are 3 types of magic: Divine, Arcane, and Psychic. Divine is granted from the gods, Arcane is obtained from studying spells, and Psychic powers are inherent. Those seem pretty cut-and-dry, but it's not clear where exactly Arcane powers originate from. I've seen a campaign where it was mentioned that some magic comes from the Elemental Planes, and those who cast Fireball, for example, draw on the energy from the Plane of Fire for that spell. I haven't seen this written down and explained though, so I'm unsure if this is true in Pathfinder lore. (Also, if it does come from the elemental planes, would gods have any way to sever that link?)
If anyone can help clarify, please do!


  • If you're asking for suggestions or opinion rather than hard Golorian lore then I'll offer you this. I think of Arcane as being more knowledge, mathematical and component based to unlock access to that which is magic. In a high magic world, these "formulas" and rituals work, but in a low magic world it either doesn't work or is more prone to failure. Divine magic is roughly the same as arcane except having to deal with your own personal knowledge of the formulas you are simply given the knowledge to unlock the magic. Psychic is neither the knowledge or gifting of the knowledge but rather an innate feel for the magic and how it works due to something genetic. You can't be gifted or learn psychic magic, but you could learn to unlock the latent ability of psychic magic if it exists. 

    None of this addresses what makes a high or low magic world, but if you were to have a high magic world where the gods blocked the magic then it would have to remove something that makes it possible. Fire, for example needs fuel, heat and oxygen. Removing any one factor makes it impossible to have a fire. With your supposition of using the plane of fire I would suggest blocking access to the astral plane. It's the most magical plane that I know and connects all the other planes. But to truly block the astral plane, then there would be no gods and no magic. So, limited access would be assumed if the gods still had any influence on the world.
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