The Tenth Sphere is the final Sphere of the Tellurian that will enable Ascension by fulfilling and completing every paradigm. Since the foundation of the modern Sphere system at the Grand Convocation (and possibly even earlier), the Traditions have sought to find this elusive concept. However, hundreds of years passed without any real evidence for the existence of the Tenth Sphere, and it was considered an esoteric rumor sought after by Archmages and similar powerful entities until the Tenth Seat manifested itself in Concordia. The following attack of the Technocratic Union has led the Traditions into disarray, but they see the harbinger of the Tenth Sphere brightly in the night sky - the Red Star.
Views on the Tenth Sphere
Below are the views of the Tenth Sphere from the major players in the Ascension War. Smaller crafts often maintained their own view on ultimate enlightenment, but rarely shared their lore until the Avatar Storm forced them into the arms of the Council of Nine.
The most common theory of the Tenth Sphere is Unity, a concept shared by the Ahl-i-Batin since their inception, the Solificati who studied the middle eastern mystics and belief that the final Unity will be the Philosopher's Stone that will help humanity to see the limitless potential of the world; the Celestial Chorus, who see it as a return to the One; and the Order of Hermes, who espouses the Ars Unitatis as a means of returning to man's original divinity.
What exactly encompasses the Sphere of Unity is up to debate. The Batini, who are in general credited for the conception of the Sphere, believe that by bringing everything within the Tellurian in touch with each other, all will be one again and every false barrier will fall, enabling the Ascension of the world as well as of mankind.
The Cult of Ecstasy revers the cosmic heartbeat (called Lakashim in their native Indian tongue), the force that moves Prime through the Patterns of the Tellurian and allows for their continued existence. By becoming one with the Lakashim during moments of ecstasy, where time ceases to have meaning and instead becomes a transcendant experience, the Ecstatics seek to connect with every living things, allowing for universal exchange that will result in Ascension.
Information is the Sphere Alan Turing discovered when he found the Digital Web. Control, however, refused to acknowledge Information as a valid sphere of its own right, especially since adages like "Information wants to be free" went against their own aims for humanity. The Virtual Adepts left the Union and throw their lot with the traditions, who let them research the Web.
In many aspects, Information is similar to the concept of Unity, a connection only strengthened when it was discovered that the Web was actually the ruin of Mount Qaf, the Correspondence Point of the old Ahl-i-Batin. Information seeks to connect people with each other and the world and eventually transcends its limits, like Unity does.
Despite the name, the concept of Akasha is the Euthanatos approach towards the Tenth Sphere. Akasha is the primal matter, the stuff which constitutes the Wheel of Ages, indestructible and never-changing. Akasha contains all potential, the raw essence of creation on a level that is even more atomic than Quintessence. Some religious Euthanatoi believe that Akasha is also the driving force of the Wheel of Ages, the drive that will push all things to a higher purpose.
The Akashic Brotherhood claims Drahma as the Tenth Sphere. Drahma defines the essence of a harmonious existence with the universe, eventually shedding all desires and acting with only sincerity in his heart. By following the universe's cycle, the Akashics hope to leave it behind and return to Meru, the mystical heart of the universe from which all souls sprang.
The Verbena approach the Self as a reflection of the Tellurian. Every human is a microcosmos and once body, mind and soul act as one, the Verbena understands that they are merely extensions of the cosmos through which the world experiences itself to become more complete and gain a better understanding of the forces that move both the Tellurian and herself. Through perfecting the Self, the Verbena hone their connection to the Tellurian and work for the day when the Self will reunite into the All.
The Dreamspeakers hold that the Word, which they call Odu, Logos, Ogham or any other term in the appropiate language, is the Tenth Sphere. As mankind asserted its dominant place in the world by being able to name things and define them in the process, the Dreamspeakers seek to understand the mystical significance of each name, often with the aid of spirits. By mastering the Word, the Dreamspeakers hope to gain an understanding of everything within the world and become one with it.
The Sons of Ether are dedicated to the fifth element, the aristotelian Aether that moved in perfect circles across the firmament, keeping the world in balance. When the Michelson-Morley experiment in 1887 did not prove the concept of Aether among the Sleepers and the Technocracy used the opportunity to remove it from reality altogether, the Sons of Ether were indignant and turned their back on the Union, instead joining the Traditions.
To the Sons of Ether, every Sphere is a particular aspect of Ether associated with material or otherwise perceivable happenings. Pure Aether, or true aether, however, is the holy grail that the Tradition seeks. Up to date, neither Traditionalists nor Technocrats nor Sleeper scientists have managed to distill pure Aether, and the Sons believe that its discovery will usher an era of prosperity, allowing for a true codification of the laws of the universe including its paradoxes.
The Technocratic Union
Grand Unification Theory
The official goal of the Technocratic Union is to create a stable and safe reality, where mankind can live unmolested from demons, vampires, shapeshifters and similar deviant monstrosities and everyone has the opportunity to become exactly what he wants to become. In order to achieve this goal, everything in the whole Tellurian must be known, so that no unknown variables disrupt the master plan of the Union. This will be done by following the directives from the Time Table, which is compiled by the most enlightened minds of the Union, that are together referred to as Control. In the end, the Grand Unification Theory will enlighten the Masses and allow them to Ascend to their rightful place.
The Conventions themselves have different views on how the achievement of the Grand Theory will happen (the Iterators, for example, favor the exploration of physics and similar fundamental forces of the universe, while Progenitors seek the answer in the ever-adapting Patterns of life-forms), but since the Union is far more consolidated than the Council of Nine, most of these theories are over dichtonomies rather than actual philosophical differences.
The Infernalists of the Renaissance claimed the existence of a qlippothic nadir was constituted by the primal Void that was before being. The Absolute is the consciousness of this primal force, that has splintered into thousands of worlds and planes of existence to experience them and to eventually reunite them into itself at the time of Armageddon. By taking command of the Absolute, the Infernalist assumes its standpoint, experiencing the entirety of Creation in one omnipotent sensation.
According to the Unnamed, there is no Tenth Sphere. It represents the longing of humans for easy answers that are not available, a secret shortcut to salvation that never existed and never will. The Tenth Seat within Concordia is nothing else than his own throne.
Below is the Tenth Sphere detailed as it appeared in the climax of Judgement.
The Tenth Sphere presented in the first story of Ascension is called "Telos" (a greek word meaning "purpose" or "end") and the Khwaja al-Akbar was its herald in the past, revealing the Doctrine of Unity to the forerunners of the Batini. Telos is the Sphere of Judgement, dividing good from evil, rewarding the just and punishing the wicked, essentially allowing mankind to become their own judges, with the rights to reward and punish themselves according to their innermost souls.
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