ORACLE: Who is the Oracle of Nur? Few people have met her, and fewer still know her for who she truly is. One thing appears certain: she changes form, appearing in different guises at different times, speaking through various hosts using the Grafter discipline of ‘exchange’. No one has seen her real body. There are some who maintain she doesn’t have one.
Sayings of the Oracle: Grafters studying with the Oracle of Nur have passed down a collection of sayings attributed to their teacher. Whether or not they are fully authentic is debatable; the Oracle herself has neither officially rejected nor accepted them. Widely quoted sayings include the following:
Good and evil are not what you decide they are. There is only the Sap. To speak of evil as if it were a thing – even that is misleading. Evil is no-thing, a lack of life, hungriness. Evil is striving against the Sap, against the natural balance. At most one might say a branch is rotten, or the leaves blighted, or a vine chokes the Tree, thinking only of its own growing.
Such opinions, though they deal with philosophical issues rather than the practical application of morality, have caused real problems for the Oracle with the colonial authorities and alienated her in the imagination of her own people. The Nurians now say their Oracle is hard to understand, far removed from reality and interested only in her peculiar branch of abstruse philosophy. Some, impatient with the old Grafter ways and touting new and rapid solutions to their problems, go so far as to shrug off the Oracle’s ‘ramblings’ as madness. Few are left to seek out what used to be called her wisdom: few look beyond the surface detail of what she says to find a deeper meaning.