Fire Emblem: The Age of Legend
A somewhat fuzzy term to say the least, the boundaries of profane magic are generally set at the edge of whatever one does. To commoners with no knowledge or experience with the use of Magic whatsoever, it’s all rather suspect. Those who merely do Imbuing or wield magical objects like Staves may regard the other branches of magic with some degree of suspicion. Practitioners of Light Magic see the rest as questionable, Anima Mages see Dark Magic as toeing a dangerous line, and the shamans themselves spend a great deal of time explaining to the ignorant and angry why what they do is officially sanctioned by the church and is in no way related to actually bad magic. Because in some places ‘Dark Magic’ has indeed become a rough synonym for ‘Profane Magic’ most dark mages are very insistent that what they practice could more properly be termed ‘Elder Magic.’
Surprisingly enough, it may actually be Light Magic which should be the most suspect. Because while providing dark and anima magic to those who asked for it properly was a deal forcibly extracted from Grimholt and Ehrholt respectively by Sekeriah, according to some tales Skaihalth may have given of her power willingly. Though the church of Fundin denies and denounces this version of the story, it is certainly true that they are much more emphatic in their defense of dark than light magic.
From a scholarly viewpoint, the distinction between other magic and the profane variety is small but important: proper magic either does not involve the ‘Gods’ or when it does puts them in the subservient position they belong, profane magic treats them as betters to be beseeched for favors and offered worship and tribute. Profane Magic is thus very much the province of Azrah and so is vehemently opposed by all true followers of Fundin.
In theory, Profane Magic is not more versatile than the proper varieties. While the First Generations wrote the majority of commonly accepted and widely used tomes for the safe, controlled, and virtuous application of magical power, new ones can always be created. However, the First Generations were much better at this and it can be frowned upon as putting oneself above them to try to “improve upon” their existing store of tomes. In general practice this means that while the powers a proper mage can command- apart from rare tomes or spells of his own devising- are fairly widely understood and known and limited, a practitioner of profane magic is likely to have powers new and strange. This is particularly true because profane mages for one reason or another often turn to Grimholt for aid (which casts further aspersions on proper dark mages of course). At best inscrutable and often outright malevolent, he’s as likely to harm as to help and when he chooses the latter generally does so in unexpected and disturbing ways.