By far the least common version of magic, High Magic is never something which one can pick up. It is innate, either one has it or one does not. Part of the elitist thinking of the magi is that only those born with this trait make truly great mages. There is, however, no proven link between proficiency at High Magic and proficiency with Low Magic.
High Magic is divided into several Talents, each of which is separate from any other. Of course, due to the fact that it comes from the attunement of the soul, or the Numen, it is not possible for a person to attain more than one Talent of High Magic. The most common Talents are the Four Elements. These consist of Fire, Water, Air and Earth and represent the vast majority of the users of High Magic. The more rare Talents are Plants and Life. It is often said, among those who have studied High Magic intensely, that the Talent a person has attained is usually connected to the spirit of the person receiving it. A man known for his temper might have Fire, for instance, a woman who is very compassionate may have Water as her Talent and so on.
At its most basic, High Magic is the manipulation of a nearby Element or Energy. Compared to Low Magic, High Magic has hardly anything one could call a spell. It is all about different ways of manipulating the energies around oneself. On the whole, it is considered a thankless skill to pursue by some as it offers a lot of power early on but lacks much by way of power as one increases in the skill, rather it increases in finesse. Using High Magic for wide scale destruction generally runs the very real risk of burning out or killing the caster.
High Magic users share a weakness with elves, they lose all control over their magic when an iron object is introduced into their bodies. For this reason those hunting High Mages often carry iron arrowheads or iron weapons and slavers occasionally give their slaves iron piercings to keep them from utilizing their Talent to escape. Unlike elves however, merely touching them or their magic with iron will not be enough to dispel it.