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Nondetection protects you from divination magic.

In an early post on Sage Advice, I read Nondetection + Invisibility even protects against True Seeing. Okay, makes sense.

But what about the Divination Wizard's Third Eye ability? It doesn't read that you cast a spell or in particular that you are using magic on yourself. It only mentions that you use an action and increase your powers of perception. As such, there's no magic involved, correct? And as such these powers could perceive through invisibility + nondetection?

It would make sense to treat it as magical, but at the same time I've always wondered why the sight ranges seemed severely limited compared to their spell-based counterparts. Perhaps this is why? Hoping for answers based on RAW only or Mike Mearls/Jeremy Crawford posts. (Links please.)

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2 Answers 2

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Nondetection will hide you from The Third Eye

See this related question: Do Nondetection and Invisibility protect you from True Seeing?

Furthermore, see the following Sage Advice: Does Nondetection plus Invisibility beat True Seeing?

I'll summarize some key points:

  • There are only two Divination spells that create magical scrying sensors: Clairvoyance and Scrying -- these are covered in part 2 of the Nondetection spell
  • True Strike and Hunter's Mark are the only two divination spells that ask you to target a creature. Both of these are not "detect-class" spells -- that is, they don't find something in the way you would think Nondetection wants to hide you
  • Most other Divination spells target the caster (range of Self) such as See Invisibility, Detect Thoughts, or True Seeing
  • It is absurd that Nondetection, a second-level spell, protects against only one cantrip, and one 1st level spell. Therefore:
  • A better interpretation is: Nondetection prevents you from being detected by any divination magic.

Again, refer to the Sage Advice linked above if you find this objectionable. It is more of a spirit of the law argument than a letter of the law one.

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    \$\begingroup\$ The question I have then is "The Third Eye" considered by RAW as magic? I mean it definitely looks like it should, but it only states that it 'improves your power of perception'. I'm asking as based on a different post of Divine Smite vs. antimagic it was ruled that the Divine Smite feature was not considered magical. Hence if the Third Eye is not considered magic...then there's no divination magic for Nondetection to protect you from. \$\endgroup\$
    – Spoo
    Feb 21, 2017 at 20:03
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Spoo RAW, it doesn't say, so that would be a DM call. But, it doesn't just "increase your powers of perception" -- it gives you the benefits of 3 different spells: Darkvision, See Invisibility, and Comprehend Languages. Furthermore, this is something gained by a Wizard through their Arcane Tradition, which is the study of magic. So, context heavily suggests: Yes, it is magic. \$\endgroup\$
    – user27327
    Feb 22, 2017 at 1:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ I believe this question would be considered incorrect with the addition of the SA Compendium, which is linked on my answer. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jihelu
    Jan 13, 2018 at 18:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ The range is not the target. "Self" is only to limit who can use the spell. If this were the target then a fireball could only occur at 150' from the caster. \$\endgroup\$
    – Grond
    Feb 13, 2020 at 4:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ There is no indication at all that the Third Eye feature is "Divination Magic", or even just Magic, which means Nondetection will be ineffective against it. \$\endgroup\$ May 12 at 7:25
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While a bit old and against the older answer.

Nondetection will not prevent you from seeing someone that is invisible, should you be using the Third Eye. Both of the examples in the other answer, while good for the time, are for spells and magic. I suggest taking a look over at my answer and question over here for more info on the matter.

This has to do with what magic is, I advise you to read the SA Compendium but the gist has to do with what classifies an act of magic as magic. I emphasized the main portion of why this is.

  • Is it a magic item?

  • Is it a spell? Or does it let you create the effects of a spell that’s mentioned in its description?

  • Is it a spell attack?

  • Is it fueled by the use of spell slots?

  • Does its description say it’s magical?

The see invisible ability of Third Eye does not mention using the effects of the spell 'See Invisible' and because it does not explicitly mention using the spell, as with my example for Tranquility on my linked answer and question, it is not considered a spell, or magical effect.

Because it is not considered a spell or magical effect it is not considered divination. Which leads us back to the beginning... Nondetection will not prevent you from seeing someone that is invisible..., should you be using the Third Eye.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ This answer is correct. I'd add that Nondetection only works against Divination magic. Even if it Third Eye would be ruled to be magical (it isn't), there is no indication that it would be "divination" magic. \$\endgroup\$ May 12 at 7:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ @GuillaumeF. It is a feature of the "School of Divination", why would it not be reasonable to consider it divination magic if it counted as magic? (You may well be right, just interested in the line of reasoning) \$\endgroup\$ May 28 at 21:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ @GroodytheHobgoblin Old reply but it has to do with the nature of how the game is specifically non specific about it's magic. Just because something is on the wizard's abilities, doesn't make it a spell or magic. It would have to specifically follow the checklist I linked to be 'magic'. That's how the creators wanted to qualify it. Is it reasonable to say it's magic? Sure. It even makes sense. However the guidelines provided by WOTC imply no. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jihelu
    Jul 14 at 16:57

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