Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Making of Incarnation - Guest Post
This is an excerpt from The Making of Incarnation: A Reader's Companion, available now from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Smashwords.
If there is one concept that is the most critical to understanding the setting for both The Awakened and Wandering Stars series, it is that of different realms of existence. In the first paragraph of Incarnation, you’re introduced to the concept of creation’s spectrum. And the following scenes take place in both the Temporal (Tima) and Eternal (Eili) realms. Though a full understanding of these realms is not impossible to piece together from the scenes of the novel, it is much easier to comprehend when walking through it chronologically. So, I’ll start with the cosmology of my fictional universe.
Creation and Rebellion
The Holy One (Saerin) originally created everything as a single, cohesive, and complex realm. All manner of living beings, as well as other non-living matter, shared the same dimension and were only separated by physical distance. The passage of time was nearly irrelevant within this realm as all things were intended to exist permanently.
One of the living beings, an angel, became discontented with his status and, in his pride, formed a rebellion to overthrow the Creator. The rebellion polarized the angelic host, and by necessity, began changing its function. The Evil One (Malrah), as he later became known, deceived a third of his kind into following him and went to war against the Holy One.
The Casting Out
The attack was repelled, and the Evil One and his followers were cast out of the presence of the Holy One. This defensive act occurred with such force that it stretched the realm, thereby revealing the intricacy of its design. The single, complex system that used to exist was pulled apart into stratified layers of existence. These layers, though still occupying the same physical space as before, were nevertheless separated by a different type of distance—dimensions of which most beings are not even aware. A vast ocean of liquid in one dimension might be solid in another, and an empty vacuum of nothingness in yet another. This is what would later be called the spectrum of creation.
As all of creation was pulled apart, objects of similar natures came to rest in groups along the spectrum. It was at this point when the three parts of a being’s existence became evident:
1) The body occupied only one location along the spectrum—the environment where it was most suited to exist.
2) Within the container of the body, the soul or consciousness experienced life at the outer limit of where it came to rest during the casting out of the Evil One.
3) The spirit—containing both the body and consciousness—extended from that point, all the way back to the Holy One at the far end of the spectrum. In this way, the spirit became like a bridge that spanned a range of creation’s spectrum.
The Great Turning-Away
Prior to being cast out, the Evil One and his angels came between the Holy One and his most cherished creation—humans. The Unfaithful (Marotru) began their assault from this position, and when they were expelled, humans and their environment ended up at the far end of the spectrum, opposite from the Holy One. It was a casualty of war that placed humans as far as possible from their creator, with enemies in between.
With humankind now vulnerable, the Evil One sought to exploit this weakness. Though unable to reach them physically, he devised a way to free his consciousness from the limits of his body. Traveling along the bridge of his spirit, he could see the spirits of all other creatures stretching back to the Holy One—pathways into other physical existences. But the spirits of the humans were not viable paths to follow; the souls who lived at the other end of those spirits were independent wills, too strong to be overpowered. Instead, the Evil One chose the wisest of all creatures lower than humans, one with the capacity for speech and just barely capable of containing his consciousness. Using this creature’s spirit as if it were a road, he traveled to the end of the spectrum and overpowered its will, stealing its physical existence for his own. This was the first instance of possession.
From one end of the spectrum to the other, only two created objects remained constant—common threads woven through each layer of existence. Two massive trees, one dark and the other light, were entwined with one another, embodying the fullness of creation in concentrated forms.
The Evil One deceived the first humans into eating fruit from the dark tree. When they did what had been forbidden, the effectiveness of the Evil One’s strategy was revealed. The humans, as well as their environment, began separating from the rest of the spectrum.
Death had entered into creation, and like a festering wound, the sickness began to spread. As this new realm drifted from the presence of the Holy One and His life-giving Spirit, its eternal nature drained away until all that was left was a place of temporary existence. On both sides of the wound (The Void), the spectrum bore the signs of a violent separation.
On the Eternal side, the environment had lost much of its form and structure. Unlike the rest of the spectrum, the Borderland, as it became known, was a place of lights and shadows, of lingering sounds and echoes.
In contrast, the Temporal realm retained all of its form and structure but had lost most of the radiance of eternity. What little was left clung to it like a desperate child. From that moment on the Temporal realm was but a dull reflection of what it had once been.
With the first humans cut off from the rest of the spectrum, and dying as a result, the Evil One proceeded to wage war against the Holy One and his angels, and the next stage of history was born.
As the angelic forces of the Holy One fought against the demonic armies of the Evil One, the Borderlands became a theater of war. Territories developed like a patchwork quilt, places of light and life bordering areas of death and desolation.
With the Evil One’s attention focused on the war, the Holy One set into motion a plan to redeem the humans and their world. To the race of the Myndarym—angels who were capable of shifting their bodies and consciousnesses to anywhere along the spectrum—he taught the Songs of Creation. Armed with the melodies and harmonies that were integral to every part of the spectrum, the Myndarym shifted into the Temporal realm and began to change it, altering its forms and functions so that it could sustain itself and thereby survive. By the time the task was completed, some of the Myndarym had become so intimately involved and highly invested in the Temporal realm that they had begun to see it as their own creation. When the Myndarym were finally called back to the Eternal realm, some did not heed the call. They lingered, wandering within their new home, continuing to shape it as they saw fit.
Thus, the two realms were born and the stage set for the tale of the Wandering Stars. If you have read any of The Awakened books, you know that the Temporal realm eventually ends up as three parallel worlds. I’m sure you’re wondering how that happens, but I plan to dive into that topic in subsequent novels, so I can’t discuss the details just yet.
Jason Tesar is the author of seven novels (in the genres of Fantasy, SF, and Military Fiction), including the bestselling Awakened series. To learn more, view his published works here, or visit his website at jasontesar.com.
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Read another excerpt - Deleted Scene from Incarnation