"Though it moves like a living thing, anyone can tell it lacks a soul... not to mention mercy."
— Hollow Warrior, Magic the Gathering
It's the Golem of Prague! Legendary defender of the Jewish people - like Alan Dershowitz, but with a conscience. Ha! I kid Alan, we're friends.
—Krusty, The Simpsons
You opened you eyes for the first time only a year ago. You were already fully grown, but had a lot of learning to do. At first, you could only grunt, but Doctor Cadaver soon taught you to speak and read perfectly. Three months ago, you realized what you were: a piece of clay. Or, to be more precise, an animated, living piece of clay. You were, as the Doctor said, a golem. Created from raw earth in a vat by the Doctor, you aren't even human. But you feel human. You have all these thoughts, emotion and urges that seem human. And you have a soul that is more than human.
—Awakened Creation, Mage: The Ascension - Tradition Book: Sons of Ether
Golems are always inscribed with a word of power, sometimes carven into their head, sometimes written on parchment and placed in their mouth. This is an attempt to mimic the sacred programming Gaia is said to carve into her own Guardians. Something is always lost in the translation. In this Age, the practice of Golemetry was traditionally associated with Kabbalistic mages. The practice has spread to cultures all over the world, as it always does. Materials vary from practitioner to practitioner. Of mud, of flesh, of stone, of sand, of forest, of cement, of metal, of tech, of water, of insects, of lava, of ice, of silver, of gold... they walk!
—The Buzzing, The Secret World