It’s time for an other installment of Shyfted Dreaming world building! This time I will begin to tackle the daunting task of imagining what Terra would be like, having merged with a world full of intelligent beings capable of psychic manifestation, the turf of their planets assembling like the pieces to two different puzzles, a patchwork of two celestial bodies. Skipping August, despite saying I’d focus on her next? Skipping prerequisite data, such as further developing the burnt cultures? SO SUE ME.
I believe that the year was two thousand eight. VizilV, the new god of Universe, had just spliced the worlds, and presented her self to the new world in many copies of her body perched atop towering, cerulean blue, curled spikes. She told us in many languages what she had done, regarded it as for her amusement- for our amusement, even, mocked our dull collective existence, and said, ‘Have fun, humans! Now you are all beyond the looking glass, like Alice and the red queen!’
Aside from the culture clash and general upset of power, randomly placed invisible warp gates of all shapes and sizes leading to and from other areas on the globe were generated, and the burnt users, the magical inhabitants of the other side, were reduced in ability. In other words, it became much more difficult for them to manifest, to use their superhuman powers. Neither world had quite known chaos like this before.
What have I provided so far? The burnt users had known about the humans for many years, due to those with the special ability to ‘siphon’ the human world, to see it and hear it but not influence it. They were generally not afraid of the humans, and many were willing to help. Human/burnt user blending was seen at music performances, and there were very few cultural prejudices possible against humans. Despite their powers, the general population of the burnt users could hardly be considered enlightened, benevolent, or even civil. It could easily be assumed that some would take pleasure in exploiting the humans. Burnt users have their own survival of the fittest going on, which of course favors order over chaos. It was typical for thugs and merciless killers to remain weak, as the foolish mentality that leads one down that road is poor for psychic discipline and otherwise gets one noticed by powerful ‘detectives’, or their rough equivalent of law-givers, and they are quickly squashed out. Of course there were disciplined and clever evildoers, and plenty of them, but they were not the norm.
Initial problems: the humans’ power grid was severed all over. Plumbing, gas, all of the pipes and cables destroyed. The majority of the burnt users were unable to self-sustain by bodily nature and for the first time in their lives had to resort to working for it. A resource disaster. The weakening of the burnt users did help with integration, as they in a big way came off more human (hence VizilV referring to us all as humans), and VizilV pulled an other stunt that even moreso served our unity: she started a war.
Before the burnt users and the humans could declare any official wars on each other, VizilV invented an army. Her fiery orange armored soldiers had just the right strengths and weaknesses, and were always in just the right number, to pose a consistent and menacing threat. This more or less unified the humans and burnt users, and caused a new blend of manifestation and technology. Ways to cut corners of both methods in order to maximize under VizilV’s limitations. Many starved, froze, dehydrated, or died in panicked civil conflicts, and many more in VizilV’s world war, and the only ones capable of doing any thing about it in a big way refused to participate.
So, stage set. I have it all back in mind. What is missing, and what could happen? Well, how were people divided? Hmm. The major organizations of the burnt users were by culture, not geography. Those who worshipped the old gods who had died in VizilV’s rise to power knew that the separation of the two worlds had been intended by the gods, and, with it and the gods gone, would likely feel responsible for the well-being of the humans. The gods taught self-discipline and self-mastery, though, so the majority of “O”‘s followers would not just give their magical powers to the humans in order to save them. It would make sense for such a thing to be considered immoral, based on “O” and Haden’s teachings. What about those who followed the dark god, who had also disappeared, The Harpist? They were cynical but, at their head, respectful. They were negative utilitarians, but may be they were too pessimistic to believe in a ‘save the world, down to the very last suffering life form’ ideology. The followers of The Harpist would help on an exposure basis, and then only when necessary. Conflicts would arise between these two groups as to how to deal with the problem, and they would quarrel, but VizilV’s war would keep them from battling each other.
Some detectives joined the war- that’s right. Some enlisted in the new military, and those that didn’t detested those that did. The philosophy of the detectives was very individualistic, and the idea of an organized fighting force ran contrary to it. These detectives could be satisfied with the new problem of the remains of the Antimagic Assembly joining forces with the burnt world’s most powerful indulgence bartering organization. Pips’s organization was not evil by necessity of their goals, but had no qualms with evil. Ruger Blacksuit was one of the special cases of evil married to intelligence and power, and this pairing offered more than enough for the remaining loose detectives to keep occupied, and then Ruger and Pips were both killed, and the threat reduced.
So that’s some of what could happen from the burnt users. What about the humans? They were just as greatly divided by nations as by faith. I can imagine places like the United States, Canada, Western Europe, Australia, Russia, and China teaming up, but who would they protect? I guess the central and south Americas would be naturally be allies as well, though I see the indulgence barterers blending with the Mexican cartels marvelously. Would Middle Eastern nations consider being allies around year two thousand eight? Would the conflict of faith and ethnicity prove to be too great to let go of for the sake of protecting the human race?
Such a war would be utter chaos. So many people, so many cultures, so many shocks. It may be unimaginable for one man. Those unable to fathom the new state of the world, those with their impenetrable religion who could not be swayed that VizilV is a god… but could they at least perceive her as an alien declaring her self as god? What about social conservatives refusing to work with burnt users, seeing them as demons, as witches, as at fault simply for not being born biologically and ideologically human? A hundred stories could simply be written from the perspectives of characters caught up in this conflict on the micro level! The pour bastards… and where would it lead?
That’s what I really want to know. What is the aftermath? VizilV is dead. Her barrier around the world dissolves, and Burnt-Terra has access to VizilV’s new worlds, with her invented cultures. Where do the pieces fall? Burnt users travel through deep space to find her other planets and explore them. The new gods are slow to create a new order, and it is going to be a subtle one. Jerusalem has been cut apart by foreign land- or did VizilV leave in it tact just to keep the conflict of the holy land alive? I think that she would have left it alone, for spite. Conflicts of old human ideas would continue, but there would be converts. There would be those happier with the burnt religions, especially young people. Chaos causes some people to lower their standards and others to fortify them, but who has the power? With the fall of VizilV also comes the destruction of her block on burnt, and it is the burnt users who have the most power, and so the greatest influence. Powerful burnt users will not convert to Abrahamic religions, and burnt users do not believe in cross-cultural wars. Burnt side militaries are a thing of the distant past, which is part of the reason why many detectives were so easily stubborn about organizing to fight VizilV’s armors.
There are three scheduled events in the history of Earth to come, because I already began writing these stories: an attack on Terra by aliens called ‘Sepharnisians’, in which technology can hardly rival burnt, a war between faith tribes that all have access to nanotechnology and complex three dee printing, and a major conflict caused by the misuse and misunderstanding of nanotechnology and three dee printing during a period when virtual reality is very popular. How shall they be sequenced, and how can they all occur with Earth independent of burnt users?
I imagine many burnt users finding permanent homes off of Earth to avoid its complex conflicts and its overpopulation. Yes, the population was reduced by VizilV’s game, but the burnt users are accustomed to much more space to share than the humans had been for hundreds of years. I imagine intergalactic expansion what with new burnt disciplines being perfected by lesser burnt users due to the demand of travel between the VizilVian planets. As Terra becomes more of a minority, its appeal is reduced. It remains that many humans refuse to become like burnt users, and many burnt users refuse to transform them. It also proves that teaching most humans burnt, due to their lack of cognitive discipline, a discipline taken for granted by the burnt users, is very dangerous for them. Per haps there is a time when the significant groups of burnt users that remain on Earth are an indulgence network and the rivaling detectives, and then, say, magical tricksters. The indulgence barterers of course favor their human customers, because they are less likely to produce base pleasures of their own. I imagine much of the world being pacified by indulgence, and then descendants of the Antimagic Assembly and the Abrahamic conservatives aim to squash out the sins in the forms of indulgence and witchcraft. The detectives go off world at the sight of war, or die in it, as they have been pincered between their enemies and those that find them unnatural.
With discipline reinstated, the value of logic returns, and the doctrinal values degrade as technology improves. At some point the gods forbid burnt users to return to Terra. A cyber punk age comes about. Cybernetics. Body modification with electronics becomes cheap just before currency becomes obsolete thanks to the quantum computer and three dee printer. Then there is the issue of the vast virtual reality, the cyber space. Then the special, limitless three dee printing device comes about, and a new techno chaos ensues. The classic case of technology advancing faster than culture. After that, soft ware is outlawed. Reminds me of the destruction of the library at Alexandria. This allows for the mechano-electrical age to return, and by this time many old human geographical boundaries have been revived. As things stabilize, the human identity is reestablished by a classical revival through old texts (non-digital; all contemporary philosophies had left with those who abandoned Earth), and, with no official written record of the VizilVian war and the burnt users, that time is forgotten, the humans being too jealous to remember. They reimagine that time as being without magic, rationalizing it all. By this time, on a far off planet created by VizilV and left alone due to the violent nature of its inhabitants, the constant world war has finally been won by a single race, the Sepharnisians! Yes. Then, not satisfied with just one planet, they move to conquer Earth, since it is the only planet that they can compete with without magic. Either due to necessity in the war or a slackening of law afterward, soft ware is legalized, and this time great care is taken while entering the nano age. Not ready for peace, and with a new wave of classical zealotism emergent, the Earth is divided by warped reenvisionings of the old religions, and genetically modified Buddhist monks crush the skulls of laser-blaster-wielding, jet-pack-wearing Judeo-Christians while the Shinto cyber samurai put Jedi knights to shame. A lone soldier of the disciples of the new gods, through miraculous feats, wins the war for his people… but what happens from there?
A global empire. The victorious faith played a defensive role in the war, and faced the contradictory fight for peace. Differences of faith were allowed in the new world order, and with the fading of tribalism in a highly advanced civilization, religion faded as well. Without war, scarcity of resources is relieved once again. The global obsession with improving technology begins, and emotional and philosophical stagnation occur, making way for my future future plans of Terra.
Of course there are holes, but many will be filled in by the direction that the stories take when they are composed. Gotta leave space for me to surprise my self; that’s half the fun! But let’s see… If the VizilVian labyrinth and a home of the new gods is to remain on Earth… What will their significance be? I can imagine the labyrinth being a sacred place to the disciples of the new gods, a place shrouded in superstition during ignorant times, and a relic of the past respected as art during wiser times. Home base for the protagonist’s faith during the religious war? A source of study during the digital disaster? It would be a shame, if it were ever destroyed. As for the home of the new gods, it could be easily hidden, and would be reasonably so.
I think that that about does it. That felt good.