Followers of the Infinite Afterlife

Dude, think about it. We're dead, right? No question about it, we all got memories of our death. Our souls were captured by this tower, and now we live in Synthacrosia. That means, if there's one afterlife... there's gotta be a second! It's perfect logic!
Thombo Jones, high ranking Fractalifer
  Within Synthacrosia exists a dedicated group of people following a set of ideals; they firmly believe the idea that there is more than one afterlife, and that each afterlife exists in a system of tiers. To them, Synthacrosia is the hub of all other tiers of afterlife. It's the beginning point, the judging area, the time that determines your worth and where you will live your next afterlife.


Their main reason for believing this is Synthacrosia its self. The tower is artificial, it's broken up into different floors, or tiers, and it slowly turns you back into a complete soul as you climb the tower. Because of this, Fractalifers believe that the Tower has the ability to judge you -- it determines your qualities, and marks them down on your soul, so that when you die a second time, you can go to your correct afterlife.

It's all just layers, man. Layers on layers, rings within rings. It's a fractal afterlife! Welcome to the Fractalife.
Thombo Jones, high ranking Fractalifer

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Divine Origins

An unknown, unnamed author penned three books detailing the Fractalife. The books were discovered one after another, near the beginning of time within The Tower of Souls; devout followers believe that the three books have existed since before any souls even arrived in Synthacrosia. This line of reasoning has led some to think that Locorin himself wrote the books; though, those old enough to remember a time when Locorin walked the tower are against that idea.  

Book One

Book one was the last book discovered, as luck would have it. It was the book that truly started the faith; before it was found, the Fractalifers had nothing to truly hold them together.   The book is full of stories, imagery and descriptions. It contains summaries of what is within both book 2, and book 3. Most importantly, it contains the main core of ideals that Fractalifers follow. A set of rules, or instructions, to ensure that a soul may gain access to their chosen second afterlife. These rules are titled "The Seven and a Half Divine Directives."   Following the Divine Directives is a sure way to make your way into whatever second afterlife so captures your interest. Should you stray from the Directives, you might find yourself arriving in one of the less desirable afterlives outlined in Book 2. Stories of people failing to go to their chosen afterlife fill the Third Book out of the trio.

The Seven and a Half Divine Directives

Those who believe must study all 3 books in their entirety.

Believers must be devout in their faith, and in their choice.

Never end your own afterlife -- never cut short another souls afterlife. You are not the judge

The likelihood of going to your choice depends on the strength of your belief.

Every soul you enlighten with knowledge of the Fractalife will strengthen your belief -- every soul they enlighten will strengthen theirs, and in turn, yours once again

Every soul deserves to know of the Fractalife

Any choice of second afterlife is okay -- make your own choice.

Don't be a d-

The last of the Seven and a Half Divine Directives was sadly cut off, and it's full meaning was never discovered. The text was written in thick, bold lettering, as if the Unnamed Author believed it to be incredibly important -- however the second half of the directive is smudged, as if the Author rubbed off the final part of it. The final half directive's intent is generally thought to be related to treating your fellow soul nicely.

Following the Directives

The meaning behind the directives has been debated about for ages. The true intent is hidden behind the simplicity of the directives, and some have struggled to grasp the directives entirely. However, over the many long years, the Seven and a Half Divine Directives have been boiled down to two main ideals.

General Goodness
Divine directives 1, 2, 3, and the final half directive are all felt to fall into this general category. They all relate to strength of belief, and strength of character. In essence, they say that one should feel confident in their choices and beliefs in their life, and treat their fellow soul with the kindness and compassion they themselves want to feel. They should choose which afterlife they want, but do not lament others for their own afterlife choices, and never should they interfere or cut short anyone's afterlife.

Goodness, Shared
The "Goodness" felt within the Fractalife is something that Fractalifers feel need to be shared. Separate from interfering, they feel, is sharing. Not every soul knows of the Infinite Afterlives, and so the secondary mission of believers is to ensure that every soul gets a chance to discover more afterlives. It loops back to General Goodness in the end; if a soul is given a chance to learn about Fractalife, but in the end chooses to forgo the religion, that soul is left alone. They've made their choice.

Excuse me, good soul. May I have a minute of your time? I'd love to talk to you today regarding the afterlife, the second afterlife, and the infinite other afterlives. Have you heard of Fractali-- damn. They didn't even let me describe any other afterlives. Oh well, onto the next.
— Low Ranking Fractalifer
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Book Two

I've read the entire second book... but I still have no idea what afterlife I want to go to next. Maybe I should just choose the River of Infinitum, so I can experience them all, from afar? Though, I'd miss the company of other souls...
— Uncertain Fractalifer
Book two is the largest of the three books; filled from cover to cover with one massive list of afterlives. Each afterlife is outfitted with a description, and one in ten afterlives will also have a hand drawn image next to the description. A disclaimer is found on the front page of the book, which states:

"This book cannot yet scratch the surface of the entire list of afterlives. The realm of death is infinite, and we may never hold it's outer edges fully in our minds. As such, this book contains but a short list of afterlives discovered through painstaking research. There are many more."
 

Book Two has been thoroughly analyzed, in the hopes of discovering mention of any additional afterlives, which would be added as an addendum to the book. The content and structure have been studied, the afterlives have been judged to be good or bad, and even ranked. Words have been counted, letters tallied... but so far, no hint of other afterlives have ever been discovered in Book Two.

While searching through Book Two, and judging the afterlives, a ranked list was developed of all the choices a soul could make regarding their second afterlife. This ranking system, though unofficial, rapidly became popular through the ranks of Fractalifers. High ranking Fractalifers frown upon the use of such a list, as they feel it promotes judging each others second afterlife choices too much.

Book Three

The first book found, and the only book, until the Second was found many years later. Book three contains no explicit mention of either of the other two books; it does, however, have a large number "3" indented into the front cover of the book.   Book three is full of stories; stories of good, stories of bad. It contains passages of people believing in a certain afterlife so hard it nearly consumes them. Tales of folk following the Seven and a Half Divine Directives exist within book three; the Divine Directives are never mentioned explicitly though, only ever inferred. It wasn't until after Book One was discovered that Fractalifers were able to attribute a Divine Directive to each story.
[...] and yet Hea'ran didn't care. He continued to steal, he continued to bribe. He antagonized the soldiers of Tamworth, he broke the artwork of Beachcastle. He fled to the desert of the Third Floor, but alas, the heat and sand ended his afterlife.   He awoke, then, in his third life. In his second afterlife. He was surrounded by sand, by heat. As he had fled to a desert after many wrongdoings, the tower judged him fit to spend eternity in the Grand Desert, to be continuously robbed of moisture, comfort, and sanity.
— Story of Hea'ran the brash, from the Third Book
fractal breaker.png

The afterlife has just begun, onwards to infinity.

Founding Date
Sometime around the beginning of Synthacrosia's operation
Type
Religious, Cult
Demonym
Fractalifer
Infinity is incomprehensibly big. That's how many afterlives there are, infinite. Now, not all of them are good... so you have to do whatever it takes to ensure you wind up in the right afterlife.
— High ranking Fractalifer

The Infinite Afterlives

Book two contains the list of all the different second-afterlives that a soul can aspire to go to, after their time in Synthacrosia is done. Below is a selection of a few different afterlives, in no particular order.  
The Mecha Dome
The very air you breath here is tainted with the smell of smoke and hot metal. Automotons fill this entire afterlife. It's not a comfortable space, and you will spend eternity toiling away, following the wishes of your mechanical overlords.   Should you spend too much time around the Clockwork in Synthacrosia, you might wind up in the Mecha Dome after your second death.

High Heaven
Most Fractalifers hold High Heaven in their minds as the ideal afterlife. Popular theory is that High Heaven shapes its self to your wishes; every step you take through this afterlife is another step in your own personal paradise.   There's no theory on how to get to High Heaven. Most believe it to be pure luck, and the lack of wrongdoing, to gain access to this wondrous area.

Everlasting Darkness
The name describes this afterlife in full. It's full of nothing but darkness. If your soul goes to the Everlasting Darkness, darkness is all you will experience.   The texts are quite clear on this one. If you end your life in Synthacrosia early, with your own hands, Everlasting Darkness is all you will see.

River of Infinitum
The River of Infinitum winds its way through every other afterlife; it gets close to each afterlife, but never close enough to cross over. Those who travel the River can see every other afterlife they pass by, and sometimes catch glimpses of the souls within, but may never experience them.   The River is a tricky afterlife. Some say you get sent there by spending too much time in and around water; others say the complete opposite. It's also often said that should you never make long lasting relationships, the River is where you will end up.

Memorandum
Some people who have lived a hard life full of setbacks, hardship, and pain, might view the afterlife "Memorandum" as a curse. Others, who have lived very happy, privileged lives, might view it as a blessing. Most often though, Memorandum is chosen by souls who feel they have been robbed of time with loved ones.   Memorandum is a constant replaying of memories of ones own life; the memories may not be altered, instead only relived. Tiny minute details may change from viewing to viewing, but the underlying memory always stays the same, no matter how many times during eternity the memory is repeated.

Saudaia
The mirror afterlife to Memorandum; Saudaia is all about the feeling of one's early memories. Instead of reliving the specific memories themselves, Saudaia shapes its self into a highly personalized afterlife for a soul. Saudaia is sectioned off into smaller and smaller portions of its self, as it keeps every new soul within an enclosed, separate portion, so as they can receive their own personalized Saudaia.   Getting to Saudaia is easy for some; if you live you life focusing entirely on the nostalgia you feel for your youth, ignoring the present, you might just find you end up in a world representative of the nostalgia you feel.

Pure Creation
Known by most as one of, if not the most difficult of all second afterlives to go to. Pure Creation is an afterlife favoured by the creative souls of Synthacrosia -- the painters, the sculpters, artisans, architects, singers and poets. Anyone who has creative blood within them likes the sound of Pure Creation, as the description of it paints an image of a wondrous landscape full of like minded individuals, shaping the world to their whims. Unlike some of the other Afterlives, like Saudaia and Memorandum, there are no segmented portions to Pure Creation. Any soul that arrives within is in the same area, in the same afterlife, creating together.   As all souls may interact within Pure Creation, all souls welcomed into it must be of similar thought process, lest the afterlife devolve into pure chaos. This fact is what makes Pure Creation so difficult to get into, as it's entirely unknown what style of thinking one must have to gain admittance to it.

The Loop
The Loop may be a mistake, or some sort of cosmic joke. The Loop is an afterlife you might go to that is an exact copy of Synthacrosia. You die in Synthacrosia, everything fades to black, and then you wake up in Synthacrosia with no memory of the past Synthacrosia. The new Synthacrosia is exactly the same as the last Synthacrosia, but the events in the new Synthacrosia don't necessarily happen the same way as they did in the old Synthacrosia.
Um... can we rewrite the passage in the book about The Loop? It's a little bit confusing...
— Low Ranking Fractalifer

Comments

Author's Notes

All images created by Stormbril


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24 Jul, 2019 17:55

Complex and interesting. I like the loop particulary and the automaton one. Does automatons have a soul that goes there automitcally in your world, or do they can find their won afterlife too ? It could be interesting if created automatons in the normal world are souls in that afterlife taken to come back here as constructs. Something a bit promethean (like White wolf book) in a sense.   Also, is it possible someone decides to stay in that plane for the sake of it ? like trying to help people there a long time to get heaven points, or just staying cause they are comfortable. A bit like grim fandango land of the dead.   How are followers intefering if they see someone trying to alter another's fate ?   Sorry if my references seems pushy ^^. But a nice article!

31 Jul, 2019 21:47

I'm glad you liked it! Thank you for the feedback, and excellent questions :)   Automatons don't have soul -- the Mecha Dome is merely an afterlife that is supposedly filled with machines. Giving them their own soul is interesting though... maybe it'd be related to taking over souls, or something like that.   Plenty of people would choose to stay in Synthacrosia! In fact, one of the Tenants of the religion is to never cut your own afterlife short. In that sense, every follower of this religion will choose to stay in Synthacrosia for as long as they can.   And as for interfering, it's slightly related again to the third divine directive -- to never cut yours or someone elses life short. I think I'll add a section expanding on that though!

25 Jul, 2019 03:58

1. The quotes are killer. They sound like ramblings of a hippy and from the word go, I'm on point. I'm immersed. 2. Don't be a d...uck? Dumpling? Or maybe a dummy? Who knows? Ah the important questions. 3. The descriptions of the afterlifes are great. Varied and unique, if a little odd, which is a good thing personally. It is a belief system after all.

31 Jul, 2019 21:48

I'm glad you enjoyed them! I had a lot of fun with the quotes, but I think I might've over-done it a tiny bit, haha.   Thanks for the comment :)

25 Jul, 2019 10:31

This was a really cool article. I loved the three-book structure used to describe religion and their tenets.   I think I'm in the minority here, but I really disliked the quotes of this article. I'm not quite sure why they sound as if they were high, but it got boring really fast. Furthermore, there is no explanation as to why is the case: are they all communally on drugs? Is that a part of this cult/religion?   I also found the format (with the second book aside on the sidebar) slightly confusing, though I understand that it makes sense given space and formatting constraints.   I was really intrigued and I was thinking whether it is possible that the author of said books would have been Arty Quickblood (as in, maybe these were his original thoughts before he went a bit mad and started tasting people, looking for the perfect soul). Basically, I was thinking of how perfecting oneself and seeking a better afterlife fits with the perfect soul. While my theory is probably widely incorrect, and I don't expect you to say one way or the other, I think it'd be interesting to know how do Fractalifers react and think about Arty's believes.   I would also like to know how do people die in the tower and what happens (not necessarily from their perspective, just in general). I feel like "The Loop" may be there for a reason to explain things, but without knowing the exact mechanisms of "death" in the tower, it's a bit difficult to draw on any conclusions.

31 Jul, 2019 21:54

Honestly, the quotes were an attempt at humour I MAY have taken too far! Haha. I still like them, but I'm thinking of changing some of them to more regular speech. The ones that stay the same I'll do as Scaley suggested, and have them all from the same person.   As for the format, I feel the same way. I'm going to do some editing here, and try to fix it. Now that I have an idea for a few more things to add to the article, I might be able to get things formatted better.   It is super fantastic to have someone thinking about my world enough to try and find connections between articles, by the way. That's one of the nicest things I've read so far. Thank you! It's also a really interesting idea... I hadn't really planned a connection between Arty and this religion, but it's for sure an idea I might consider.   Death in the tower definitely deserves it's own article. So far, I just explain it every time I mention it -- but it's unique enough to need it's own consistent description. I'll get on that after SC, I think.   Thanks for such a well thought out comment!

31 Jul, 2019 22:59

I've updated the article! Don't feel like you have to read the entire thing and pinpoint the changed, but I'd love to know what you think :) Especially regarding the quotes! I haven't gotten around to fixing the whole confusing about "Death" part yet however.

25 Jul, 2019 13:21

I like the quotes, although if the bulk of the people don't really talk like that, then maybe you should make them all from the same guy. Regarding book 2, the selection you gave were really all bad except one. Is there more bad than good? Maybe have one that is a little easier to get into than just the one up to chance.   The last directive cut off sounds odd. Is the page torn or was it never actually written and just left like that?   I found the layout a little confusing as well. You could put a heading for book two and quickly talk about how it was found or how people related it to book 3. Still leaving the list on the side panel without too much confusion.   Overall, I really liked the idea behind it.   Amazing Job!

31 Jul, 2019 21:56

Good point on the quotes. From a mixture of feedback I've gotten, I've decided to tone back the quotes a bit, and then any "stoner" sounding quotes will all be from the same person. And another good point with the selection of afterlives! I'm going to expand upon that, now that I know how to fill more of the article out as well.   I'm going to add a tiny bit more detail regarding the last directive, and then rework the layout as well. Thanks for the comment! It really helps a bunch. Glad you enjoyed it still as well!

1 Aug, 2019 03:39

This looks great. I love the idea that the last directive was intentionally smudged. It leaves a lot of questions of whether it was just a mistake or a more philosophical idea that people weren't ready for that directive. It could mean the last directive is nothing or it could mean that the last one is so important that it couldn't be written down. I love it.   I also like the new section on book 2 and it really adds a lot more to the article. I love the new afterlife examples. The sound really cool, but specific enough that not everyone would want to go there. Great job!

1 Aug, 2019 03:50

Ah wonderful, I'm so happy to hear that! Thanks again for the initial feedback comment, and I'm stoked that the changes appear to have been good. Glad to have been given the chance to improve this article :)