• Editorial: Theories of Magic: Earth Ponies

    Hey, it's been a while, so let's talk about something we haven't talked about for a while. What is earth pony magic? Sure we’ve been watching MLP for a decade now and everyone has their speculations, but we’ve never really gotten a clear answer as to what it is.

    What does it do? Can unicorns or pegasus do it too? Is it useful?

    With a complete series to analyze I think we can tackle some of these questions and finally draw some correlations between episodes. If you’re ready for a little magic theory then you’ve come to the right place.

    Gotta put nature in its place.
    Didn’t it always bother you that Twilight was able to harvest those apples faster than Applejack or that Fluttershy can talk to animals while earth ponies can’t?

    It seems anything an earth pony could do any other pony type can do better.
    Rarity: It's time for an intervention, this isn't healthy.
    We’re lead to believe they have a special connection to the earth, but growing plants and raising animals are something anypony can do.

    There isn’t any clear magic that only earth ponies do. Let’s get the obvious out of the way, shall we?
    It's easy to forget Rarity's special talent is finding gems. SO REMEMBER!
     Unicorns can use their horns to do a specific magical task. Whether finding gems, levitating objects, or conjuring teacups, unicorns have the ability to wield magic influence over their immediate surroundings.
    Stay in magic school kids and you too can conjure teacups.
    They can train and level up to do higher-level magic like teleportation, age spells, and time travel.
    Apparently, ropes can touch clouds but not earth ponies and unicorns.
    Pegasi can control the weather and walk on clouds. They control the water cycle too as they are responsible for collecting the water needed for clouds instead of tasking evaporation to do it.
    I'm with Twilight here, forcing others to love is wrong . . . but magical!
    Alicorns seem to have the abilities of every pony type and tend to control the magic of either celestial bodies (which used to be the unicorns' job) or relationships such as love and friendship.
    You know what would be super helpful here? No, not magic, technology built for earth ponies. What is up with that hose!?
    But earth ponies can do none of that.

    Other pony types are able to tap into what appears to be limitless magical energy. Simply by sheer will unicorns perform spells and pegasus can fly.

    They don’t seem to need to fuel up their magic. There are no rituals to perform or higher powers that have to be evoked. As long as they are the corresponding pony type, ponies are able to do their magic.
    It's powered by love, but who made the Crystal Heart?
    There are some forms of magic that do require objects to work. The Tree of Harmony and the Crystal Heart are two big ones that come to mind.

    While magic acts like free energy in Equestria, it is able to be contacted in these objects. Most of these objects happen to be either plant-based or rocks. And this is where my earth pony theories come in.

    Theory One:

    Smart Cookie: I didn't even plant anything in this dirt!
    While various other types of ponies can be good at farming and animal husbandry, earth ponies have a special connection to the planet itself.
    It's not about the sculpting, it's about the love put into your work.
    Only earth ponies have the ability to change the planet on a mineral level. Along with controlling the rock cycle, as Pinkie’s family does on their farm, earth ponies might be able to infuse rocks and gems with magical properties.
    Even evil can be crafted into magical objects.
    Any stone with special powers would have had an earth pony connected to its existence. And being metal is from the earth, fabric from animals or plants, and synthetics from chemicals, it’s possible any non-rock object was enchanted by an earth pony blacksmith, weaver, or chemist as well.
    What are the odds an earth pony would discover this apple and not a pegasus who has probably flown over this place a thousand times?
    Earth pony magic triggers the magical potential in plants creating mystic fruits and healing herbs (maybe even mischievous plants like poison joke).

    Earth ponies might be unique in this ability. No unicorn farmer would be able to find and/or cultivate a magical plant.
    Zecora's positions have such great potential because of this specific earth pony credential.
    Remember how Zecora always came into Ponyville to buy ingredients? Perhaps plants grown by earth ponies are the only ones magical enough for her potions thus an earth pony city is the best to shop at.

    Theory two:

    Earth ponies control the food; always be nice to them.
    Considering everypony in Equestria is possibly eating foods grown by earth ponies, it’s possible that all magic in Equestria is actually the result of an earth pony.

    Assuming magic is all relationship-based in Equestria, an earth pony creates magic by growing food with love or a sense of duty.
    Dark Earth Pony Magic or just Pinkamena being Pinkamena?
    Any earth pony who isn’t functioning in love or is affected by hopelessness would then create something that takes away from the magic in Equestria. It explains how Pinkie was able to ruin a farm in one day and killed otherwise healthy flowers just by walking by them.

    Theory Three:

    How did they get a seed at all?
    This all implies that the Tree of Harmony wouldn’t have grown had eath ponies not been part of its creation. Sure Starswirl and the others had all the elements of friendship, but it was the earth ponies’ ability to infuse that magic into the tree’s seed that made the whole thing possible.

    It also explains why the Spirit of Chaos couldn’t affect the tree directly and had to use a form of plant magic to stifle the tree.

    Its a reason a non-crystal pony was chosen to be the leader of the Crystal Empire. Cadance is an alicorn and thus has connections to earth pony magic and can manipulate the Crystal Heart more directly (or have her alicorn baby be strong enough to destroy it, whatever the story calls for.)

    And it’s why Queen Chrysalis had to make clones out of trees.
    Just ignore those two unicorns.
    All this is to say that it’s possible that all magic comes from the sense of friendship and harmony fostered by earth ponies. Without their subtle contribution, there wouldn’t be any accessible way for other pony types to create positions, magical items, or grow magic.

    Or maybe earth ponies are just really good at farming and I’m just being silly. What do you think? What is earth pony potential in light of the entire show?