Sunday, August 21, 2016

Origin of the universe according to a cult of Lucifer (Four Realms)

[The Norse pantheon isn't the only one that thinks it knows how the universe came to be (their creation story, recall, was here), and in Hell there are cults devoted Lucifer who claim they know how things happened.  This is what one such cult says.]

In the beginning there was darkness.  The spirit of God raced over the formless waters and said, "Let there be light."  Lucifer burst into being and lit the portion of the cosmos nearest him with such light and heat that the water boiled away and the earth beneath first came into view, when it did it glowed and melted, and sparks drifted away from the place of Lucifer's birth.

God looked on Lucifer and his home, and saw that it was good.

God appointed the light to have dominion over half the cosmos and the darkness to have dominion over the other half.  He called the light Day and the darkness Night.  This was the first day.

God separated the waters into two parts.  One part remained below, while another he raised up, separating it from the waters below with a dome.  In the cold heights the waters above froze into ice, while the air cooled into mists.  God called the waters above Heaven.

This was the end of the second day.

On the third day God gathered the waters below together so that the land beneath might rise up, be seen, and dry.  This was the first unmelted land, and God called it Earth.  He called the waters Seas.

God saw that this was good.

God called on the land to bring life and the germs of new life.  Plants that bore fruits and seeds grew from many parts of the land.  These plants yearned toward the light of Lucifer and his home.

God saw that this was good.

That was the third day.

On the fourth day God bade Lucifer leave his home and come to darkness of Heaven.  He said, "Let there be lights in Heaven to separate the day from the night and to rule the seasons."

Lucifer, doing the bidding of God, brought a great light from his home to rule the day.  God called it the Sun. Lucifer brought a lesser light to traverse both night and day, to rule over the nights, and to separate the nights from one another, into months.  God called this light the Moon.

Finally Lucifer brought many small lights, to reign only in the dark of the night, that they might mark the seasons as God had commanded.  God called these lights Stars, placed them in Heaven, and even breathed life into them.

In those days there were no angels, for no messages needed to be delivered, and no demons, for the revolution had not taken place.  All of the living lights were simply known as "we" "us" and "our" for in those days God, Lucifer, and the Stars God had breathed life into all lived together, as a single family.

God looked upon all of this, and saw that it was good.

So went the fourth day.

God said, "Let the waters below bring forth all kinds of living creatures," and so the Sun shone upon the waters below, the vegetation spread into the waters below, and soon all form of creature floated and swam in the sea, feeding upon the vegetation in the waters below.

God said, "Let Birds fly between the waters above and the waters below," and so the Sun shone upon the vegetation, and Fish ate some of the vegetation, and into the world came the Birds who feed on plant and Fish.

God looked upon the creatures of the air and the creatures of the water and he saw that they were good.  He blessed them saying, "Be fruitful and multiply."

This was the fifth day.

Now only the land lacked living creatures, and God said, "Let the Earth bring forth living creatures of every kind: Cattle, and creeping things, and wild things of all kinds."  And so it was that the sun shone upon the vegetation, and the fish ate the vegetation, and the birds ate fish and vegetation, and on the land there were creatures that ate the vegetation, creatures that ate the fish, and creatures that ate the birds.

Now the cattle were not suited to live on their own, so some of the Stars God had breathed life into began to farm the cattle, and as the living creatures multiplied they came in new sorts and new kinds.  Some living things were not content to remain in a single realm, some from the land went into the water, some from the water went onto the land.  Some from the air landed or swam.  Some from the land took flight.

In this mixing new interactions emerged.  Some birds ate creatures of the land.  Some fish ate birds or even land creatures.  Some vegetation ate creatures of the air.

But the fifth day hadn't ended yet.

God looked upon this menagerie of new life, and saw that it was good.

Then God said to Lucifer and the living lights, "Let us craft mortals in our own image, and give them dominion over the living things of the waters below, the air, and the land."

So God, and Lucifer, and the living lights, crafted the first mortals.  They created these beings male and female.  Some of the living lights, those Stars that God had breathed life into, had become accustomed to tending the cattle of the land, and were not pleased to yield dominion to the mortals, but they obeyed.

God blessed the mortals and said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply.  Fill the Earth and subdue it.  Have dominion over every living thing in the Sea, and the Earth, and the air between the waters below and the waters above.  See, I have given you every plant that yields seeds, every tree that yields fruit.  You shall have them as food.  I have given them to every living thing of the air, or the land, or the waters below as food, so I give them to you."

And it was so.

God looked on all that had been made, and he saw that it was indeed very good.

That was the sixth day.

With the creation of the Heavens, the Earth, the Sea, and the place of light, God considered creation to be finished.

On the seventh day he rested.

Some time later, on a patch of earth that was barren, God decided to create something new.  From the dust, and on his own, he created the first human.

Then God planted a garden of every plant of the Earth that was pleasant to the eye, and he called the garden Eden.  God commanded of the human that he not eat of a certain tree, but otherwise gave the human dominion over Eden.

God decided that the human should not be alone, and so brought to the human every living thing of the waters below, and the land, and the air between the waters below and the waters above.  God took joy in seeing what the human would call each living creature, and ordained that whatever he called it would be its name.

Many of the living lights thought this strange, for they already had names for all of the living things, and there were already many mortals to whom they had taught these names.

God was not concerned.  He was perturbed that the human had not chosen any of the living creatures as a companion, and so sought to create the ideal companion for the human.

The process was strange and storied, but once it was done there were two humans in Eden, male and female.  It came to pass that a serpent in the garden convinced the second human to eat the fruit of the tree that the first human had been forbidden from eating, and afterward the second human convinced the first to eat the fruit of the same tree.

God became enraged.  He cast the serpent, and the humans out of Eden.  He separated Eden from the rest of the Earth and Sea by placing living lights with weapons of fire at the border, and he cursed the humans to have a shorter life than the other mortals.

After being cast from Eden the humans spread over the face of the earth like a sickness, they displaced the mortals that God, Lucifer, and the living lights had created together.

Many of the living lights grew angry.

God did not heed their anger, and he assigned the living lights a new duty, that of messenger.  The humans would one day come to call messengers "Angels", for that would be the word for messengers in a strange tongue known as "ecclesiastical Greek".

Many of the living lights were perturbed that they were reduced to serving the very things that had spoiled the world they'd worked so hard to build and displaced the mortals they had created in their own image.

God was not concerned.

As time passed the materials of the Earth and the Sea grew spirits of their own, most unlike those of the living things.  The thoughts of living things gave birth to other life, beings of thought and dream.

Meanwhile some of the living things in the darkness of the primal waters below grew in power, strength, and intelligence and called themselves gods.

This did concern God and he ordered that their portion of the waters below be separated from the Sea.  This was done as God had ordered, but the other beings were able to reach out from their closed off waters.  They touched the dreams of mortals, they touched the thoughts of living lights, and they even touched things God Himself was unaware of, in the place where Lucifer was born.

As cataclysm and punishment were bestowed upon the Earth and Sea because of the failings of humans, unrest grew in the living lights.

Lucifer, spoke on behalf of the living lights, bringing their grievances to the attention of God.

God was not concerned.

Every time Lucifer spoke before God in a way that was questioning or aggrieved God would remind Lucifer that it was God who had created Lucifer, God who had created the world, God who had breathed life into the living lights, God who had made all.  Also, there was talk of ostriches.

With the passage of time, Lucifer became less and less satisfied with God's argument.

Finally Lucifer claimed that being the creator could only be used as an excuse for so long, and demanded that God account for his actions and oversights.

God was not concerned.

Lucifer went to the living lights and spoke eloquently before them.  He said that if humans and creatures from the depths could be their own masters, then so too could the lights of the Heavens.  He said that, though God was their creator, he was not their owner.

He said that if God would not give them their freedom, they would have to fight for it.

A third of the living lights followed Lucifer.  They were defeated in battle, driven from Heaven, through Eden, and finally into the place where Lucifer was born.

God and his army locked them away in that place.

No longer messengers in service to God, the living lights called themselves what they were: spirits.  Eventually the humans would come to call them "Demons", for that would be the word for spirits in a strange tongue known as "ecclesiastical Greek".

Lucifer's homecoming was not a happy one.  Not only had he lost a war, and lost friends, not only had he been imprisoned, but he and the Demons would come to learn that they were not alone.

Life on the land, in the waters below, and on the land, began when the light of the Sun, but the Sun had merely been a light from the place of Lucifer's birth.  The place of heat and light.

Here there had been no need for divine fiat to create living things, and here, without oversight since the fourth day of creation, light and heat much greater than the sun had given rise to strange and powerful beings beyond the imagining of the beings of the Heavens.

The first contact is known by many names: the massacre, the time of screaming, the winnowing, the death of friends, the loss of innocence, the beginning of the True War, the time of sorrow and terror, and many more things.

God was not concerned.

The conflict with the others, the outsiders, has never ceased.

Eventually Demons were able to leave the hidden place, Hell, where Lucifer had been born and the outsiders had been spawned.  By then Hell was our home, a home earned with blood and the lives of friends.  So even though we can leave, we do not escape.  One doesn't escape a home, one simply leaves with intent to return.

The force of our efforts to gain freedom of motion slammed Hell into the earth and spawned Limbo where the two met.  When we reached Earth, for the first time in so very long, we discovered that Heaven had created a similar place, Purgatory, to facilitate the ease of travel from the waters above to the world below.

Limbo is the youngest realm.

This is the cosmos as it exists today.

We have seen it, and it is not good, but it is the only one we have.

* *
* * *
* *

Ok, going to translate this into Sam-speak.

First, places:
  • Heaven, Hell, Purgatory, and Limbo are all the names used in Sam-speak.
  • Earth, Sea, and the air between the waters above and the waters below is just plain "Earth" in Sam-speak.
  • Eden is the Battle Plains.
  • "the darkness of the primal waters below"/"their portion of the waters" that was separated from the Sea is the gods' domain.
  • Sam-speak places Dreamscape, Revelation, and Omen are presented here as the result of lowercase gods reaching out to "the dreams of mortals",  "the thoughts of living lights" and even touching "things God Himself was unaware of" respectively
Second, races:
  • "living lights" are Angels and Demons, each of which is identified as such in the text above
  • the mortals created on the sixth day in "our own image" are Elves
  • gods would be "some of the living things in the darkness of the primal waters below grew in power, strength, and intelligence and called themselves gods"
  • The mortals created by God alone in Eden are humans, which they're identified as
  • "the materials of the Earth and the Sea grew spirits of their own" - Elementals
  • "The thoughts of living things gave birth to other life, beings of thought and dream" - Figments
  • "strange and powerful beings beyond the imagining of the beings of the Heavens" - Outsiders, and identified as such in the text.


  1. And there is another one. As great as always and I'm looking forward to others in the future.

    I wonder, as the author, do you have a "true" origin story for the realms in mind, or is your guess as good as the one of the characters within the world?

    1. I wonder, as the author, do you have a "true" origin story for the realms in mind, or is your guess as good as the one of the characters within the world?

      I have no idea. The setting, in my mind, is in the present. Creation has long since passed.

      It is the case that each of the four realms has an old race and a new race, which would seem to rule out creation stories that have certain orders (the character Sam rules out any stories where creation started with gods, angels, demons, or humans) but an argument can be made for the old and new divide being in general rather than in totality.

      So one pantheon could have created the universe and still had most gods come after figments had already been around a while. The same could be argued for angels, or even for humans. (Demons generally admit that they were once the same race as angels.)

      In the story here the creation of humans is mentioned long before the creation of figments and elementals, but that's not really about the order of creation so much as the storyteller not giving a damn about figments and elementals. The two sentences that describe them could take place any time after the creation of fish. Their placement is more thematic (grouping together things discovered before the Angel/Demon divide that came about without God's explicit command: gods, elementals, and figments) than temporal.

      Meaning that this story is entirely possible as written. So is the Norse one. So are many others.

  2. What is missing here is a present. So now we are here: are we working to start a new war that we can actually win? Do we cower away from God? We're still here, he's still here, how do we feel about each other?

    1. In the present tense of the setting God and Lucifer have both been gone for a while. Some people think they held a private little apocalypse and killed each other, some think that they walk the realms incognito-like, some think they've withdrawn to oversee things on a level that prevents corporeal interaction and only communicate using their chosen prophets, some really don't care, some . . .

      The list goes on, as one might imagine.

      The demons were a fragmented bunch when they were still angels (they all had grievances against God, but these were diverse in nature.) They became more so when they were demons because Lucifer took a fairly laissez faire leadership style. (He had other focuses than internal affairs. Initially Lucifer's primary concern was to keep the demons alive, which was difficult with the outsiders there, then find a way out of Hell, then . . . honestly no one's quite sure, he got even more detached.) Then he disappeared, which wasn't unusual, and never came back, which was.


      So the point of all of this is that this cult to Lucifer isn't exactly getting any commandments.

      Lucifer led them in a fight against God. They lost.
      Once in Hell Lucifer led them in a struggle for survival.
      Once they had sufficient defenses, Lucifer led them to gain their freedom.

      Since then . . . not much direction.

      This particular cult considers Hell home, they aren't looking to take over Heaven. They'll try to curb Heaven's influence on the other realms, but the last clear direction they've received from the one they revere can loosely be translated as "Be free" (this was the finding a way out of Hell bit) and before that was "survive" (this was the initial contact with the outsiders.)

      So when their more-or-less deity's commands boil down to, "Live and be free," they've got a wide latitude on what they do now.

      It could be framed in other terms. The war against the outsiders could be considered conquest rather than survival. Leaving Hell could be seen as a sign that one realm isn't enough. Another cult to Lucifer might therefore think that the correct interpretation is "Go forth and conquer."

      They, however, wouldn't frame the war in Heaven as about freedom. Thus their creation narrative would be different.

    2. That's fair enough. I'm thinking of the way that creation myths are usually told to answer, not only "where did we come from", but "what do we do now" – in the Judaeo-Christian tradition, toil and suffer.