1.1 The Nature of the Multiverse

Your world is but one of many, separated by a layer of infinite magical energy.

The universe you live in is vast, strange, and truly infinite. And it is but one of at least 108 others existing alongside each other and bound together by what can only be called magical energy.

Les Plusieurs Mondes

Les Plusieurs Mondes, is a name generally given to the 108 individual universes arising out of the magical aether of creation. Literally translated as “Many Worlds”, in this context reference made to a “world” or “realm” does not imply a single planet or geographic region, but an entire universe, complete with its own standard physical reality and planes of existence.

These Worlds coexist side-by-side with each other, separated by the Thaumatadiastasis, a quasi-dimension existing outside space and time, comprised of pure magic.

Thaumatadiastasis

Thaumatadiastasis – (noun): 1. The theorized realm of pure magic that lays between the universes making up the multiverse. pre-aeonic: from Hellene thauma– ‘miracle’, dia– ‘separate’, –stasis ‘equilibrium’

Dictionary of Cosmogony, Rodolfo the Clock Maker, vol. 57 3rd Ed. 4792 68A

Often referred to as the Dream Realm, it is a place where the laws of physics do not exist. Reality itself shapes itself according to the will of the living things that sometimes fall into it.

Magic is what connects and the Many Worlds; perhaps it is what creates them. Unlike the physical dimensions, the Thaumatadiastasis exists outside of both space and time. It cannot be properly said to exist either within or outside physical dimensionality.

While the existence of the Thaumatadiastasis is an established fact, its true nature is regarded by many as fundamentally unknowable. This is due to the fact that any direct experience with it is merely a reflection of the being experiencing it.1

Paidithaumos suggests that the Thaumatadiastasis alone does not exist as we understand it, but rather is a state of potential existence. Only by introducing matter and energy from a physical universe can it be observed to have existence.

Pocket Pseudo-Universes

The most potent and interactive universal form that can interact with the thaumatadiastatic realm, of course, is a consciousness. In cases where a living creature enters or directly interacts with the Thaumatadiastasis, a pocket universe is observed to form around that creature based on the workings of its nervous system.

For most living things from bacteria to lower-order mammals, this means an endless plane of whatever environment they find agreeable to survival. For intelligent creatures, however, the experience can be quite different.

Because the thaumatadiastatic reality is created from through some interaction with a creatures nervous system, it will pull memories from those beings who have them.

Due to the quirk of pattern-matching and symbol-using beings such as humans, this typically results in a state of unreality. Life within the thaumatadiastatic pseudo-reality seems to become an unending dream.

The most disciplined minds can and have used this phenomenon to garner immense magical powers for themselves. But for most, stepping into the Thaumatadiastasis often devolves into an unending nightmare of paranoia and self-inflicted torture.

Chemical Wormholes

Whether you’re speaking of the three dimensions you and I experience as reality or all 10 physical dimensions, a mature universe is a rather hectic and often violent place.

At times, the fabric of a universe can become a bit over-stretched; often times this is due to a side-effect of dimensional folding. In these weak areas of space-time, Magical Energy2 from the thaumatadiastatic over-reality seeps in.

Because of this, it is possible that even in the least magical worlds, there are always a few tiny holes leading to the Thaumatadiastasis. It also follows that a lack of an abundance of magical energy does not preclude the presence of it altogether.

Based on the research of a number of scientists and alchemists in dozens of the more enlightened worlds, one simple compound has been isolated that is both sensitive to thaumatadiastic radiation and present to some degree on all life-bearing planets in the several Worlds that have so far been studied.

The compound Dimethyltryptamine (DMT)3 has been found to exist in all ecosystems thus studied. It is theorized that this compound’s ability to break down the barrier between space and the magical realm is what caused magic to enter reality and explains the connection between the appearance of life and the presence of magical energy.4

This doesn’t explain how some worlds experience far more magic than others; simulated models suggest that overall DMT levels do not radically fluctuate between universes.

Malicule the Meticulous states that most magical energy in a given world is the result of left-over weaknesses in the barrier between the physical universe and Thaumatadiastasis. These weak areas arose from the extreme gravitational forces at work during processes such as the Big Crunch and galactic formation. The interactions between DMT and thaumatadiastatic radiation is merely coincidental.5

But whether or not it plays an active part in drawing magical energy into a physical universe, DMT’s thaumaphilic nature also begs the question as to the nature of the special connection between magic and biological life itself.

The Theorized Structure of the Multiverse

Most researchers of les Plusieurs Mondes agree that each of the known universes is part of a fractal chain of branching timelines. However, they still cannot agree on the number of individual seed universes.

In the lore of the Aurantian Concordat6 it is conjectured that there are in fact only 108 existing seed universes, the number of individual worlds discovered so far. This position is held by a faction of wizards who call themselves the Dharmics.

Others believe that due to the infinite number of alternate timelines, there must in turn be an infinite number of seed universes. Typically, this is a position held by the Aestheticist faction. They believe the Tower was created as a timeless work of art from 108 specific universes by one of the Elder Gods before their descent into madness.

Still others claim there is only one seed universe and each of the 108 Worlds is tied to a different timeline or super-aeon (defined as the period of time between a universal big bang and big crunch). They argue that as the Thaumatadiastasis exists beyond space and time, it must in turn touch all points of each. This faction refers to their position as Originalism.

The opinions of nearly all members of the Aurantian Concordat essentially fall into those three schools of thought. Some overlap, particularly a small, unnamed faction who subscribe to a hybrid Aesthetic-Originalist view on the matter.

Travel Between Universal Timelines

The Wizard’s Tower is not the only method of travel between worlds. As you could imagine, opening portals into novel universes is topic of furious research among Aestheticists, despite the skepticism of both the Originalists and Dharmics that a successful experiment would actually provide evidence.

Travel between the fractal timeline emanations is capable through the manipulation of natural physics. Travel between Worlds through the manipulation of natural physics does not appear to be possible, however.

Typically, would-be time travelers from low-magic Worlds discover this phenomenon. Most applications of the principles of gravitational warping that allow travel between timelines in an individual World relate to time travel.

Rarely, experiments with fundamental forces such as gravity will expose a weakness in reality that allows the Thaumadiastasis to pour into non-magical worlds. Over time, the nature of that universe will change and it will become more magical. This typically wreaks great havoc on the established ecosystem, creating a literal hell-on-earth.

Magic-based travel between time-lines and dimensions is common in high-magic worlds. Access to the Thaumatadiastasis itself is not impossible, but can represent a real hazard to those who wander in by accident.

Some of those beings who manage to find their way into the Thaumatadiastasis often fend up deposited in a completely new realm. Most become trapped forever in a heaven or hell of their own making. A select few become gods.

Planar Realms

Physical Dimensions

Many high-magic worlds have also developed extra planes of reality. Because of the sheer amount of magical energy needed to create a new plane of reality, these are most often the work of gods who use their thaumatadiastatic connection to shape whole new realities for themselves and their followers.

Typically these planar realities are reconstituted from the collapsed dimensions which occur as a natural part of a universe’s entropic life cycle.

That is to say, the Big Bang that represents a universal birth actually results from a n-dimensional collapse caused by the extreme gravitational mass of the preceding Big Crunch.7 Which is to say, every time a universe is created, it has one less dimension than its preceding incarnation. In our case, our own universe existed as a four-dimensional reality before the contraction and crunch that led to the three-dimensional incarnation in which we live.

It is widely believed amongst the erudite that each universe contains a discreet number of dimensions. Based on the experimental data collected by Malicule the Meticulous, new dimensions can be neither created nor existing ones destroyed. Rather, the n-dimension of a Big Crunch collapses into a microcosmic state such that it exists within the macrocosmic dimensional space.8

None of les Plusieurs Mondes appears to have yet collapsed beyond three dimensions, so it isn’t known what would happen in the advent of a Big Crunch within a one-dimensional universe. The prevailing opinion is that the full collapse of all 10 dimensions would result in a new cycle and thus a new 10-dimensional universe.

From Dimension to Plane

Unfolding a collapsed microcosmic dimension back to its original macrocosmic scale without annihilating the universe itself requires truly gargantuan amounts of magical energy. Typically these extra-dimensional realities are known as “Planar Realms.”

Most high-magic universes have at least one planar realm, but a rare few have as many as seven. The 10-dimensional constant thought to create a hard limit to the number of Planar Realms that can exist within a given universe.

However, the existence of more than two or three living gods within a universe is not common. They tend to kill each other off and appropriate the vacated Planar Realm.

Because of this, it is also not uncommon to find vacant planes of reality, though they are considering unstable. Without the power of a god to maintain it, a Planar Realm eventually collapses back to the microcosmic scale.

  1. Paidithaumos, Panos. Thaumatadiastatic Travel and Experimentation. 13th ed. Podopolis: Velvet University Repository, 1201 42A.
  2. Magical energy is sometimes referred to as thaumatadiastatic radiation.
  3. DMT is a chemical substance that occurs in many plants and animals and which is both a derivative and a structural analog of tryptamine.
  4. Fischer, Eugen. “Paranormal Züchten: Verbesserte Psychedelische Kopplung.” Die Zeitschrift Der Arkane Wissenschaft 420, no. 2 (March 21, 1928): 34-41.
  5. Malicule the Meticulous. Birth, Death, Rebirth: Effects of Super-Massive Density on Multi-Dimensional Space. 1st ed. Vol. 3. 6 vols. Puce: Aurantian Concordat Press, 112 69A.
  6. The conclave of wizards who rule the planet Atlass in its 69th, and presumably final, aeon.
  7. Did a hyper-black hole spawn the Universe?
  8. Malicule the Meticulous. Birth, Death, Rebirth: Effects of Super-Massive Density on Multi-Dimensional Space. 1st ed. Vol. 1. 6 vols. Puce: Aurantian Concordat Press, 112 69A.