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...the Tower

Michael Kirkbride

Hasphat Antabolis:

Vehk is it? Well well. Perhaps you better start with a smaller bite than the "true nature of the Psijiics" if we hope to have a complete answer before the Dragon Breaks once and for all. Unless my readings on Dwemer numerology are mistaken, the Psijiic Endeavor touches the heart of most of the mysteries of this world. Ha ha, thankfully I am under no self-imposed obligation to speak clearly!

So, Thief, let us begin with something smaller, but still large enough for those of us still within Time. Tell us of the Psijiics and their relation to the Marukhati Selectives (and, by extension, to the Tower).

"By extension, to the Tower..."?

It extends the other way, I'm afraid. But yes, let's go that way, spinning. I have spoken of this in an earlier life [21].

What is the Tower?

The Tower is an ideal, which, in our world of myth and magic, means that it is so real that it becomes dangerous. It is the existence of the True Self within the Universal Self, and is embodied by the fourth constellation, and is guarded by the Thief, the third. The Thief is another metaphorical absolute; in this case, he represents the “taking of the Tower” or, and sometimes more importantly, the “taking” of the Tower’s secret.

What is the Tower’s secret?

How to permanently exist beyond duplexity, antithesis, or trouble. This is not an easy concept, I know. Imagine being able to feel with all of your senses the relentless alien terror that is God and your place in it, which is everywhere and therefore nowhere, and realizing that it means the total dissolution of your individuality into boundless being. Imagine that and then still being able to say “I”. The “I” is the Tower.

What created the Tower?

The Wheel created it. The Wheel is the structure of this universe, and it is easiest to see it that way: rim, spokes, hub, and all the spaces within and without. I shall take each in turn.

What created the Wheel?

Anu and Padhome, stasis and change, both vast realms sitting in the void, they created it. Not vast, infinite, as the void was infinite. Imagine an infinity enclosed by another; you come away with a bubble. Now watch as the two bubbles touch. Their intersection is a perfect circle of pattern and possibility that we shall call the Aurbis. The Aurbis is the foundation of the Wheel.

What are the spaces within and without of the Wheel?

Outside the wheel is the void, bereft of anything. It cannot be named. If it has more aspects than stasis and change, they are outside of true language. Inside of the Wheel is the Aurbis, as I have explained.

What is the rim of the Wheel?

As the process of subcreation continued, both Anu and Padhome awakened. For to see your antithesis is to finally awaken. Each gave birth to their souls, Auriel and Sithis, and these souls regarded the Aurbis each in their own part, and from this came the etada, the original patterns. These etada eventually congealed.

Anu’s firstborn, for he mostly desired order, was time, anon Akatosh. Padhome’s firstborn went wandering from the start, changing as he went, and wanted no name but was branded with Lorkhan. As time allowed more and more patterns to individualize, Lorkhan watched the Aurbis shape itself and grew equally delighted and tired with each new shaping. As the gods and demons of the Aurbis erupted, the get of Padhome tried to leave it all behind for he wanted all of it and none of it all at once. It was then that he came to the border of the Aurbis.

He saw the Tower, for a circle turned sideways is an “I”. This was the first word of Lorkhan and he would never, ever forget it.

What are the spokes of the Wheel?

For ages the etada grew and shaped and destroyed each other and destroyed each other’s creations. Some were like Lorkhan and discovered the void outside of the Aurbis, though if some saw the Tower I do not know, but I know that, if they did, none held it in such high esteem. In any case, some of those that did see the void created its like inside the Aurbis, but each of these smaller voids sought each other out. Void shall follow void; the etada called it Oblivion. What was left of the Aurbis was solid change, otherwise known as magic. The etada called this Aetherius.

Now Lorkhan had by at this point seen everything there was to see, and could accept none of it. Here were the etada with their magic and their voids and everything in between and he yearned for the return to flux but at the same time he could not bear to lose his identity. He did not know what he wanted, but he knew how to build it. Through trickery (“We have made the Aurbis unstable with the voids”) and wisdom (“We are of two minds and so should make a perfect gem of compromise”) and force (“Do what I say, rude spirit”), he bound some of the strongest etada to create the World.

The spokes of the Wheel are the eight gifts of the Aedra, sons and daughters of Aetherius. The voids between each spoke number sixteen, and their masters are the sons and daughters of Oblivion. The center of the Wheel was another circle, the hub, which held everything together. The etada called this Mundus.

What is the hub of the Wheel?

We are the hub, the Mundus that goes by many names. We are the heart of all creation. What does this mean? Why should we care? Lorkhan created it so that we could find what he did. In fact, and here is the secret: the hub is the reflection of its creators, the circle within the circle, only the border to ours is so much easier to see. Stand in its flux and remain whole of mind. Look at it sideways and see the “I”.

This is the Tower.

Now then, yes, that's a good place to start, I think. Where shall we go from here, endeavor or break or the endeavor to break?