G is for Gap and Grafter


Gap [the]: region of empty air between the Central and Eastern Canopies where no branches are visible above the Storm, and only clouds stretch out to the horizon. The Gap takes between three hours and half a day to cross by dirigible greatship. Most Treeologists accept that the trunk uniting the canopies continues here under the clouds, although a faction of scholars at the seminary called Centralists deny there is any connection at all between the East and West, holding that the Eastern Canopy is an inferior offshoot or sapling of the original Tree.

Grafter: a seer or prophet supposedly able to foretell the future from visions gained in a trance. The Grafters of legend were said to communicate with a mystic force known as the Sap, literally the voice of God according to Argosian tradition. Nurian tradition holds that the Sap is a life-giving energy flowing through the universe (See ‘The Sight’ and ‘Tree of Being’.)

The Argosian priests know something about the Sight. They think they are Grafters. They think they are doing good, using their power for good. They think that Grafting is about forming, training, forcing the world to follow their own desires; for the good, they tell themselves, always for the good. But I tell you that Grafting is giving, listening, allowing yourself to be trained. The Sap is sometimes a terrible thing, frightening. It is not ‘good’ in the sense you think, of always going your own way, the way you want. It contains all Wants. It contains all Ways. It is ‘good’ for the greatest number. But what does that mean for you? Maybe the thing for you is to be small and powerless, to watch your loved ones die and be unable to save them. On the other hand it might be your lot to grow strong and powerful and help the whole world. Maybe. Who knows?”

– saying attributed to Matrya, the first Oracle of Nur

 

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