Human religion/philosophical movement founded by Grigor Haentil (Loreca) c. 7900 CE.

The symbol of Lorecanism is the looped staff, designed after the physical staff carried by Loreca.


About 7900 CE, in the Credixian Imperium, the Imperator was on the outs with both the Meletian clergy and Kaalian churches. Devotees of Brandix were following a course of neutrality which began about 6000 CE.

Then came Loreca. Born Grigor Haentil of Amny, he studied at the Brandixian School on Amny until he was about 30. Then, being a student of alien philosophy, he persuaded a Galactic Rider to take him to Nephestal, where he eventually found his way into a Daamin philosophy group.

Grigor Haentil was of a Kala Phenkae branch that produced Schiller-Hertzfeld scores in the high 500s. With drugs, he was able to virtually imitate the Daamin Forever Dreams and their peculiar nonlinear causality.

In 7932 CE, when he was 56, Haentil returned to Amny. He got a lecturing post at the Brandixian School there and started on the philosophies that formed the basis of the Book of Loreca. By the time the Book was published (7943 CE), there was a growing community of Haentil's disciples on Amny and even throughout the Imperium.

In 7943 CE, at a pre-publication conference on Amny, Grigor Haentil took the pseudonym Loreca and began calling his movement Lorecanism. In part it was based on scraps of Daamin philosophy, in part on the Wakmarel disciplines, in part on pure Brandixian contrariness. But Loreca was no fool, and subsequent history has shown that he charted the right course for his movement to increase and prosper.

Mass communication played a part in the spread of Lorecanism, and the Book of Loreca became something of an undergorund bestseller. But the key to the movement was the induction of a state of awareness called kedankat, a mixture of Wakmarrel obdumat and Daamin Forever Dream, not too effective for those with low Schiller-Hertzfeld scores. The introduction of kedankat had to be done in person.

Indeed, Loreca had styled Lorecanism somewhat like a mystery religion, with kedankat in the role of the central mystery.

During his life, Loreca had two audiences with the Imperator, and in 7948 CE the Imperator gifted the movement with Credixian land and buildings that later formed the nexus of Circe Mater.

Lorecanism maintained friendly relations with the Brandixian Church, and less-than-friendly ones with the cults of Meletia and Kaal. This fact alone tied Lorecanism to the Throne, for the Imperator saw a chance to counterbalanace the power of the other Churches.

And in the course of time, Lorecanism spread through the Galaxy and became the state religion of the Second Terran Empire.

One thing is certain: Loreca himself exploited the state of kedankat until he was very nearly precognitive. It must not be forgotten that his Schiller-Hertzfeld score was very high. And it is certain that one of Loreca's close associates, perhaps even lover, was Kirl Ventag, a programmer with access to the large puters of Amny's Brandixian School.

Loreca left programs and personal writings that charted a good deal of the future of Lorecanism. All of his successors as Grand Primate, for six hundred years, were identified in enough detail that there were no succession crises to weaken the early Movement.

The Book of Loreca

The Book of Loreca is a philosophical treatise; the movement of Lorecanism was more akin to a political expansion.

One of the most beautiful passages in the Book of Loreca is the Hymn to the Rising Sun, a solo, almost a lament, to the rising sun and the indomitable principle of Light, of the driving force of Human ingenuity.

Find out more in The Leaves of October: a novel of the Scattered Worlds by Don Sakers Digg!


The Galactic Riders

An ancient order devoted to the cause of peace and freedom in the Galaxy.

The Galactic Riders were founded by the Iaranori Tenedden in the high days of the Empire of the Iaranor. Every ten Nephestalan years, the Galactic Riders' Festival is held to commemorate Tenedden. The "Tale of Tenedden" is a ballad that tells of the foundation of the Riders.

The Galactic Riders are headquartered on Nephestal. They are extensively trained in music, history, culture, and the accumulated wisdom of the Free Peoples. Each Galactic Rider owns a ship, crafted by the Shipwrights of Nephestal, which is very nearly a symbiote with the individual Rider. The ships have tuneable antigravs, and are imbued with enough intelligence to operate autonomously when necessary.

There are about four million Galactic Riders.

Any weapons that a Galactic Rider carries are linked (physically or telepathically) to the Rider and programmed so that they cannot be used in anger.

The Galactic Riders provide help to those in need. In addition, they carry on the fight for freedom over repression, maintain cultural continuity, act as mediators, and provide role models. Galactic Riders have the full authority of the Council of the Free Peoples; they can (and do) act as judge, jury, and executioner. A Galactic Rider's integrity is beyond question.

Galactic Riders' philosophy is summed up in their popular catchphrase: "We may instruct, advise, persuade, and cajole, but we may not force."

Although they are overseen by the Council of the Free Peoples, Galactic Riders are responsible only to their own consciences. On the few occasions that a Galactic Rider has misused power, other Riders have hastened to administer justice.

The Riders maintain a large database of all requests for aid; each individual Rider decides which requests to answer. The database weights requests by urgency, proximity, estimated length of time required, and various other criteria, in order to help individual Riders make their decisions. No Rider is required to respond to any particular request, or to any requests at all.

Many Riders make regular circuits of various worlds and settlements, visiting each perhaps once a year or so. Some set up permanent homes, and operate out of them. Others consider their ships to be their homes.

Some notable Galactic Riders include:

  • Betar Chenyak: First Human Galactic Rider.
  • Dar: Human Galactic Rider, spouse of Kev Mathis (The Leaves of October)
  • Dareenten: Legendary Iaranori Galactic Rider who preserved the Golden Throne after the fall of the Avethellan Empire.
  • Dayadhvam: Canis sapiens Galactic Rider.
  • Debenned: Iaranori Galactic Rider, delegate to the Council of the Free Peoples of the Scattered Worlds.
  • Mondappen: Iaranori Galactic Rider on the Virgo Mariner expedition. (The Leaves of October)
  • Tenedden: Founder of the Galactic Riders.
  • Tenedden (namesake): Iaranori Galactic Rider who visited Earth during the Sack of Terra. ("Candelabra and Diamonds")
  • Fadil Tormity: Human Galactic Rider on the Virgo Mariner expedition. (The Leaves of October)

Find out more in The Leaves of October: a novel of the Scattered Worlds and "Candelabra and Diamonds" by Don Sakers Digg!


Virginia Carroll

Empress of the Terran Empire (375 - 384)

Birthdate: 16 October TE 351 (2504 CE)
Birthplace: Terra
Date of Death: 3 August TE 384 (2537 CE)
Parents: Laura Carroll & Joe McCaffrey
Siblings: none
Children: Henry Castiligoni, Denise Löwenger, Joseph Löwenger
Spouses: Leo Castiligoni, Mark Löwenger, Merisa Jakobbsen, Monica d'Herelle

Biographical Outline:

Virginia Carroll is widely acknowledged to be the greatest resident of the Whirlpool Throne since Maj Thovold.

Virginia had a quiet and relatively normal childhood. She was a particular favorite of Anna Leonov, who was technically her grandmother. In a break with tradition, Virginia's education took place in "ordinary" schools, rather than through private tutors in the Palace. Of course, her classmates were mostly the children of various Idara. In school, Virginia was a fairly popular and made many friends.

Virginia took and passed her adulthood tests in 367, when she was 16. She immediately entered a group marriage with Mark Löwenger, Leo Castiligoni, Merisa Jakobbsen, and Monica d'Herelle. In 368, her son Joseph Löwenger was born, followed by Denise Löwenger in 372 and Henry Castiligoni in 375.

Beginning about 370-371, Virginia took an active role in Laura Carroll's administration. Prior to this, Virginia had undergone the customary training for an Imperial Heir -- now Laura followed the precedent established by Alex Leonov and encouraged Virginia to work with her as a sort of "on-the-job training." Virginia accompanied Laura on several tours of the Empire, and herself made some highly-publicized visits to the war fronts.

This training proved invaluable when Laura died suddenly on 22 February 375. Virginia was able to take command of the Empire immediately, and her succession met no opposition in the Imperial Council.

As an Empress, Virginia combined her mother's strength and singleness of purpose with her own easy, outgoing nature, and managed to charm the Empire while ruling effectively. Spouse Mark Löwenger and his brother, Karl -- both high-ranking Naval officers -- were among her most trusted advisors. Spouse Leo Castiligoni, who occupied the Imperial Council seat of the Bank of Luna and had an easy relationship with other mercantile leaders, was another effective advisor. And her spouse Monica d'Herelle, an historian with the Kinshasa University, brought input from the academic community. Virginia also retained a good relationship with religious leaders, most especially the Sisterhood of Meletia.

With all three of her children, Virginia followed her mother's formula -- public education coupled with day-to-day experience at the actual job of being Empress. Joseph was accompanying Virginia on state business as early as age 10 (TE 378), and Denise was not far behind.

In 381, amid a worsening war situation, Virginia faced the greatest challenge to any Emperor or Empress in the Empire's history: on 26 August forces of the Patalanian Union attacked Terra and sacked the planet. Faced with an overwhelming enemy force and the imminent danger of capture, Virginia (upon recommendation of TERRAD) moved the Imperial Capital to Laxus. Although Terra fell to the invaders, the Empire was preserved.

Over the next few years Patalanian forces continued to strike in the Sol Province (which was renamed Laxus Province) -- notably, in 383, an attack on Laxus itself was repelled, and the Patalanian forces finally broken.

On 3 August 384, a Navy vessel carrying the Empress was attacked while on transit to Borshall; the ship was destroyed and all hands lost -- including Virginia Carroll. For the first time, a monarch had died in battle -- public reaction was enormous, as the entire Empire went into mourning for a period of tendays.

Virginia was succeeded by her son, Joseph Löwenger.

After her death, Monica d'Herelle remembered: "Virginia had a love/hate relationship with the Throne. She was fascinated by it and couldn't resist the power, but she was afraid of it and almost withdrew at the last minute when her mother died. All through her term, she could feel herself aging due to the office, could feel herself losing her sense of humor, being broken by the responsibility -- and yet she couldn't let go of the office, due to her morbid fascination with it. Had she been of non-Imperial birth, she probably would have wound up a suicide -- instead, she found something even more painful and self-destructive: the Throne of the Empress."

Find out more in "Candelabra and Diamonds" by Don Sakers Digg!


BDA Tr#ska

Colonized in 2087 CE, the planet BDA Tr#ska was for decades a dumping ground for Terra's criminals and involuntary deportees. A native microbe, Tergum caruleus, attacked settlers, turning them into blue-skinned albinos and creating a physiological dependence to traces of cobalt in the soil. Because of this, Tr#skans were easily-identifiable anywhere in the Galaxy, and those who left BDA Tr#ska for any extended period of time had to take cobalt supplements.

[The # represents the local perversion of the middle vowel, and is quite impossible for non-Tr#skans to pronounce correctly. Tr#skans take great pride in correcting the pronunciation of others, even when the outsider's ear can detect no difference.]

In pre-Imperial days, when Terra was still considered nominal leader of the loose hegemony of human colonies, and when Cambolinee still trafficked with other human worlds (although its location was even then a well-kept secret), a delegation from BDA Tr#ska was attending a formal ball on Ibidem when delegates from Cambolinee, Terexta, and Promethia ridiculed the Tr#skans' skin and eye color. The population of BDA Tr#ska swore vendetta against the three worlds. After Terexta was attacked and all but destroyed (later to be rebuilt by the Empire), Promethia opted to pay reparations to the government of BDA Tr#ska. Promethia finished paying these reparations in 2461 CE, for a total of over 900 trillion Imperial Dollars. Cambolinee, apparently relying on its secret location as an ultimate defense, offered nothing to BDA Tr#ska, and from that point on, the people of BDA Tr#ska were determined to make Cambolinee suffer.

In TE 350, there was a schism in religious thought on BDA Tr#ska. Approx. 15,000 exiled Tr#skans settle on Dunsinane as guests of Idara Adelhardt. The Tr#skans were shunned and eventually went to live in hidden villages out of the mainstream of Dunsinane society.

After the fall of the First Terran Empire, BDA Tr#ska became an important trading world. The Knights Economic, under the command of the Council Mercantile, ranged through Credixian and former Patalan territory, and became known as the shrewdest traders around. The loose economic hegemony was known as the Tr#skan Trade Union.

About 3100 CE the Tr#skan Trade Union entered a period of expansion that was to last for three centuries. The Union was, by this time, about 300 years old and relatively stable. The Meh Family had provided good leaders, and the Knights Economic led forays that developed new markets and new products, new territories and colonies. It was more or less a Golden Age for Tr#ska and Tr#skans -- although somehow it didn't seem so at the time....

Unfortunately, success was a temptation to Tr#ska's powerful neighbors, the more so as the general economy of the sector fell while Tr#ska remained rich. When Marella IV Kiadas took the throne of the Deletian Monarchy in 4624 CE, she began forceful annexation of nearby planets. (Ironically, the Deletian Navy relied on high-level military technology that the Tr#skan Trade Union had made available following contact with the Grand Duchy of Elendan c. 4000 CE). She fed on fears that Tr#ska would expand its trade hegemony into a political state (fears that were not exactly unfounded, after the introduction [c. 4600 CE] of the family Nighnaiteyate into the Knights Economic). At the Council of Dusaan (12-15 Marz 4634 CE), Deletia persuaded Vermis, Vetret, Kertora, and Terexta to join in an alliance (formally known as the Deletian Entente) to attack and destroy BDA Tr#ska, and to partition the Trade Union.

Tr#skan refugees spread throughout the Galaxy in what is called the Tr#skan Exodus. A majority settled on planets with established Tr#skan trading communities: 36,000 on Kumphel, 30,000 on Leicsta in the Patalan Cluster, 20,000 on Javal, 13,000 on Tustan-Din, 10,000 in the Duchy of Mel. Lesser numbers went to other worlds: five thousand to Borshall, three thousand to R Staran, a thousand to New Sardinia, nine hundred to Telorbat, 300 to Elendan, 100 to Credix and another 100 to the Aetorian League, and about 50 to Geled. About 200 Tr#skan refugees are believed to have fled to the Ebettor culture in the Galactic Core, and about 500 seem to have joined the Galactic Riders.

Marella IV Kiadas was slain when her uneasy alliance broke up into bickering over Tr#skan loot. Her son, Chartelespin IV, tried vainly to rule -- but economic disruption and a war with Vermis and Vetret led to several attempted coups, and in fifteen years the Deletian Monarchy was conquered by a new dynasty from the semi-autonomous world Fey. The new territory was reorganized as the Post-Deletian Empire.

Two generations of Fey rulers, however, could not undo the damage caused by Marella IV Kiasdas and the destruction of BDA Tr#ska, and the area slipped into decline and economic stagnation.

The exiled Tr#skans never forgot their homeworld; the Knights Economic slowly built up their power and their wealth, and in 9743 CE, BDA Tr#ska was resettled.

Find out more at the Scattered Worlds site Digg!


Varieties of Nations

(from a speech by The Ivory Madonna, First Terran Council, 3 September 2014 C.E.)

There are four general types of nations, and each has its own drawbacks.

The ethnic nation defines itself by shared genetics and ancestors. In this sort of nation, citizenship is granted only to those who are members of the single ruling tribe or ethnic group. Social mobility is constrained, especially for non-citizens. Examples include Germany, Serbia, and Japan. The chief dangers of the ethnic nation are inequality, inflexibility, and the excesses of so-called ‘ethnic cleansing.’

The cultural nation defines itself by shared language, religion, history, and tradition. Citizenship is open to those who assimilate completely into the national culture. Individual or group deviations from the national culture are not tolerated. Social mobility is possible, but often difficult. Examples include France as well as most theocracies like Iran or Israel. The cultural nation is often characterized by extreme repression, human rights abuses, and inflexibile economies.

The nation of nations includes multiple ethnic groups ‘united’ by a common political structure: either some form of federal system, or a totalitarian government. In many cases, one or more ethnic groups are disenfranchised or mistreated. Social mobility is difficult for many, and impossible for some. Examples include India, China, the British Empire, and the Soviet Union. If this sort of nation escapes the danger of totalitarianism, it risks ethnic violence or apartheid.

The nation of communities consists of cultural subgroups bound by common political structures: usually some form of federal system. Subgroups define themselves by common tradition, language, religion, or culture. In the best nations of communities, all subgroups contribute elements to an overall national culture. More commonly, subcultures vie with one another for domination of the political or cultural process. Social mobility is possible for most. The United States and Umoja are nations of communities. It is easy for this type of nation to fall into institutionalized discrimination, or even hardcore racism.

Conventional wisdom tells us that the nation of communities, despite its drawbacks, is the best choice for maximizing individual liberty and social harmony. But we of the Nexus do not accept the assumption behind this wisdom, the assumption that any sort of nation is inevitable or desirable.

In all cases, the mischief that nations do is worse than whatever benefits they bring. Today, the world is too small…the human race is too small…for nations of any stripe. We are one community, and anything that fractures us, anything that sets us against one another, is dangerous and damaging. This is true of ethnicity, of culture, of language, or religion…and, yes, of nation.

Let there be no more Nations of God, Nations of Culture, Nations of Language, Nations of Nations, Nations of Communities. Instead, join with us in celebrating the one, the only nation that makes sense: the Nation of Humanity.

Find out more in Dance for the Ivory Madonna by Don Sakers Digg!