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Fading Suns

Cosmology

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The Fading Suns setting repeatedly makes reference via the mythologies of various races, to pre-historic events connected with the Annunaki and the creation of the universe. This article attempts to summarize relevant items as described in the different published materials, in the hopes of clarifying the intent behind this cosmology.


AscorbitesEdit

[Orphaned Races ppg 22-26]
"Somata Vosht'i," meaning --those who dwell in the night-- were born from their mother "Okt'tunut'nva" --primordial darkness, whom they tried to awaken, failing consistently until one of them created light, to which she reacted by recoiling and withdrawing, before becoming inert again. In mourning they sang, and in singing together attained a kind of wondrous unity of mind. This made them wish for other singers, whom their singing created. To make homes for them, they created the universe, and many of them gave up pieces of themselves to create worlds and moons.
But the universe became too big, and the primordial darkness stirred in pain, threatening to destroy all. Many of the Somata Vosht'i repented having created so much, and proceeded to cull the lights of the suns and the lives of sentient races to appease the darkness, so that some portion of the universe would be allowed to remain. Younger generations -- "Chf'rik," loved the universe and did not want to see it dimmed, and so they drove their elders out of the universe, where they struggle to keep the primal darkness at bay.
Some of the younger ones later repented this betrayal of the elders, and decided that compromise on the light of the universe was acceptable if the youngest ones of all could be given a chance to survive, so they took to aiding the banished Elders, giving them respite from the darkness and the tools they needed to continue their work.
Among these are "Shaa'tcol" -- For Offspring that Endure, who is thought to be the equivalent of Ukari Lulat-- one of the younger beings, credited with the invention of sexual reproduction. Another is "Osh'chluv" -- Knowledge Gained by Pain, whose primary attribute is fire.


Etyri and MinahoomEdit

[Player's Guide pg 125]
"Minahoom," witch-mother goddess of the Etyri sacrificed a part of herself to the gods beyond the sky to attain wisdom.
Minahoom's Eye
[Forbidden Tech pg ]
The part of Minahoom so-sacrificed was her eye, in order to attain full and complete knowledge of time. (It's a powerful soul-shard known to grant visions as per Omen, kept by an Etyri coven to this day.)


Oro'ym and NizdharimEdit

[Player's Guide ppg 151-160]
The Oroy'm retain cultural memories of Annunaki technology, including passwords and command phrases, and once traveled the stars. They fought with a race, the squid-like Nizdharim, who claimed descent from a being "Nidderdak from beyond the stars," who is among a pantheon of beings who "hurled time back upon itself."
They were mentored by an elder race (possibly an ocean-going, cetacean race), and one of them, a being "Dionak" gave the Oroy'm advanced culture and a religious philosophy "the breathing universe," which suggests that the universe is full of spirits, including spirits of worlds, moons, and living things. Later this elder race withdrew, leaving the Oroy'm vulnerable to the subsequent attack of the "Sons of Krillos."
The Oroy'm believe that they like other young races have a hard time gaining favor with the spirits of the breathing universe because of the withdrawal of the Elder races.
[Star Crusade pg 126]
Current Nizdharim on Hargard regard Nidderdak as a progenitor god who put them on numerous worlds to await his call when the stars begin to dim. They recognize "Ultharroth" --the great maw-- final hunger seeking its way back into the universe to devour light. Some however worship a god "Nao," --the pulsating life force of the universe. Nao may represent nature, neutrality, a simple rival concept to Nidderdak, or a god of light. His worshipers claim he is the architect of the present universe, and that Nidderdak is a relic from a past universe that seeds the universe with with child races to attempt to prolong its existence.


ObunEdit

[Children of the Gods ppg 12-17]
The Obun's treatise, Litany of the Lightbearers, relates Lightbearers Oluré and the other principalities dispelled the darkness and chaos that was before and at the beginning of time, with words that brought their respective essences (wisdom, science & the laws of nature, the senses, the body, harmony & unity, communication, and quiet), into potential and then actual reality, creating the universe, planets and stars, starting with Velisamil.
Also related in Obun mythic literature is how some of the Lightbearers/Principalities, who were not Gods themselves, split off and formed a Shadow court, including Anakrein (one-eyed god of judgment) and (the) Rylos, eventually doing war on their brethren. And how the Obun were warned that the Shadow Court would tempt them with power and "freedom" that was really only subservience to chaos. Some were tempted, and these Ukari split with the Obun over loyalty to the Shadow Court.
Obun history relates that the Lightbearers withdrew for an unclear reason: possibly to let the Obun mature as a race, possibly because the Obun had failed, possibly because they were distracted by a crisis elsewhere. Taking their leave, they said they would return one day, and that the Obun would attain the stars before then.

UkariEdit

[Children of the Gods, ppg 46-48, 65, ]
The Ukari "Noddavitya," relate how their chief god Annikrunta confronted the "T'lintoi," --the deceitful gods, accusing them of creating sentient races and doling out wisdom to them slowly, thriving in the meantime on their worship. Annikrunta called for these races, such as the Obkarn, to be raised up as equals and given the "Grail water of truth," (which is nominally a reference to the power of speech, but may actually refer to psychic power.) He warned that this must be, for "wisdom without price breeds insolence, an insult to the living universe."
Ukari teaching also relates, vaguely, a creation god, "Amdwontha" --the first god, who created the gods, who in turn dreamed things into existence to fill the unformed universe with patterns and laws. But some gods multiplied these laws until they began to strangle the universe, which caused other gods to rebel.
For the Ukari this rebellion was a war of independence from the stifling of the Gods. Anikrunta's desire for the Ukari was to "strengthen" them so they would be better able to resist the Obun gods who would feed off their souls/worship.
The Ukari believe in a pantheistic power inherent in all phenomena-- "rivga." They also believe that below the gods are spirits, especially spirits that protect locations. These are not favorably inclined to Ukari, and have to be appeased by amulets, sacrifices, and other shamanic practices.
Other Ukari gods-- "Kadani," include the sons of Rillos, who are war gods, Glanglun-Untya, a god of pain whose fate is to be nailed to a rock of fire by the Tlin'toi, at whom he laughs, and Lualat, mistress of the nighted depths, the goddess of sexuality.


Layalath &cEdit

[Dark Between the Stars ppg 79-80]
The Universal Church identifies "Layalath," the bottomless womb of the void, as a demon-- entities whose primary goal is to make themselves known/remembered to as many sentient beings as possible.

VauEdit

[War in the Heavens: Hegemony pg 8]
The prevalent, post-Second-Republic view of the nature of the War in the Heavens is that it was fought between two races, one good and aided by "empyrean" powers, the other evil and aided by demonic powers. The good won, but were extinguished in the process, leaving no mentor for the younger races behind
[WitH:H 15-16]
Shortly after they gained civilization, the Vau chose to enter servitude to the "Architects," beings of vast power who sought to mold the physical universe and indeed reality itself, to their will, and who respected the Vau for their defeat of the predator species against whom they had struggled in the rise to sentience. This made the Vau pawns in a war between the Architects and the "Abrogators" who rejected the degree of control the Architects sought over the universe.
In that war, the Abrogators' patrons were revealed as the "Ungoverned," ancient and wrathful enemies of the Architects who had been locked away (out of the universe?) long ago. The Architects asked the Vau to sacrifice their ability to view "the Weft", and gave them in return knowledge and a technology that gives deep insight into the reality and the future.
[WitH:H 59]
The 'Weft' is the technology that governs the universe according to the designs of the Architects.
[WitH:H 102]
Religious thougts are emanations from realities outside the Weft, Ungoverned existence, and Vau distrust it and seek to limit its influence. The Vau, like the Architects, seek control over reality itself.


(Human) PsychicsEdit

General Theories on Psychic Power
[Dark Between the Stars ppg 9-10]
There are lot of theories about why sentients have psychic ability. Some have noted they appear to be suppressed by authorotarian religions and materialistic science, and likewise, that theurgical ability, perhaps related to psychic ability, seems to flower in eras with less emphasis on materialism and technology.
Stellar Apocryphon
[DBtS 10-11]
The Stellar Apocryphon suggests that the Annunaki were actually many advanced races, divided into elder and younger factions, the former of who taught the latter their technology. But the younger races did not have the wisdom of their elders, and eventually used this technology to war on them-- the War in the Heavens. This fight involved many yet-younger races. Those few that survived the war went into hiding and continued a cold war by proxy of the younger races, the war in heavens only a memory in the mythologies of the youngest races. The editor of the Apocryphon also says the War in the Heavens is not over, and will be faught again when the Annunaki return. He suggests the Vau have prophecies to that effect, and believe the War will be faught in "Sat'rama," which the editor translates as "Otherspace," discribing it as a "mental dimension of ideas," a realm of psychic powers. Others have disagreed with the editor, suggesting that Sat'rama refers to philosophical dialectic, meeting-of-minds, or is possibly even related to "Sathra." Other commentators have suggested that various events are signs of the fate foretold in the Apocryphon, including the Fading Suns phenomenon itself, described as attributable to demonic beings who are ghosts of Annunaki psychics.
Invisible Path
[DBtS 16-17]
The invisible path see history as an evolutionary process in which psychically gifted emerge as a kind of natural aristocracy. The Invisible Path's creed suggests that the War in the Heavens continues, and is founded in the beliefs of ancient races, some of whom felt that the destruction of the physical universe would lead to psychic evolution, and others who felt it could only occur within the physical universe. Those who argued destruction were largely victorious until one of the defenders of the physical universe sacrificed himself to save the universe. Since then, the defenders have been psychically awakening the youngest races to help them in defending the physical universe. A few of the destroyers remain, watching the youngest races whom they keep as slave-servitors.

al Malik Mystical TeachingsEdit

[Lords of the Known Worlds, ppg 88-89]
First Republic scientific genius and al-Malik House founder Munir Ibn Tarif created the "Lukos Retina," which when injected into the eye, granted visions of the future and protected against the lures of Sathraism. It was addictive and only useful to advanced minds. He developed a newer version, "Luxdei-3," and tried it on himself. This resulted in visions of the Universe's Destruction. He fled to Istakhr, married and had children. Finally, telling his son "I go to dance with the powers of Hell and break them," he walked into the desert and was bodily swept away by something (some say a raging river, some a desert storm). His path founded the al Malik mystical tradition, which aims at uplifting humanity, the "salvation of the living universe," and "complete control over calamities of the soul."
[LotKW ppg 91-94]
Tahir the Doomed, a descendant of Munir Ibn Tarif, was given a vision by the Gargoyle of Nowhere, of the universe as energy, and of entropy devouring the universe. By sacrificing a small part of his life-force, he was able to avoid being destroyed by this vision. He named the void beyond these devouring energies "al Mannat" (also an ancient Urthish pre-islamic deity, goddess of death and fate), whom he described as a lover who wished to be reunited with him (q.v. the al Malik Graceful Tongue talk of "the Beloved.") He outlined a mystical path in which individuals must build up a soul-tax to feed the devouring powers outside the universe while developing spiritual strength and purity, emerging immune to devouring powers, and therefore free. His path seeks to to accellerate spiritual evolution by hardening humanity to break free of the soul-tax.


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