Worldbuilding Wednesday: Qulurism

(All Worldbuilding Wednesday posts are here, and as always, you can ask questions about this or any other Parhelionverse thing on the Tumblr blog! These posts aren’t necessary to understand the comic, but they might be handy for summarizing context. Patreon backers can read one post into the future.)

Excerpted from Encyclopedia Xenotheologica, v81.754.4Q, abridged, Ponoma Publishing House, a Yima subsidiary


The main tenet of the Quluri faith is the sacredness of patterns, whether real or imagined. To devout Qulurists, the only distinction between a living being and perceiving a face in static is consensus. Holy texts allude to the whole universe being a work of consensus reality; whether this is taken as metaphorical varies by sect.

Main Branches:

Inarr Qulurism
This sect, comprising about two-thirds of Qulurists, focuses on uniquely strange natural phenomena. Large forsite crystals are often at the center of meditation rooms, as adherents ponder its seemingly-impossible properties. Thinking in terms of what ought to exist is a dead end, as the concept is meaningless in this context. Boltzmann Brains are venerated as patterns-from-noise in the purest form, and they occupy many leadership roles.

The sect is split between those who believe the universe is fractal, with each part extrapolating to the whole, and those who reject any notion of a cosmic plan.

Yxkla Qulurism
While Inarr Qulurism is mostly practiced in remote monasteries, Yxkla Qulurism has taken root in spaceports and cultural hubs throughout the galaxy. This branch holds existence as a staggeringly-unlikely event to be celebrated, mostly by seeing how close one can get to no longer being a coherent entity. Other sects write this off as pure hedonism with a mocking veneer of Quluri faith, but there’s surprising theological depth to it, sometimes.

It lends itself well to syncretism, so its adherents may not even call themselves ‘Qulurists’ (if they are in any state to speak at all). Between that and the wide dispersal, estimating the size is hard beyond ‘more than you’d think’.

Other Variants
The core of Qulurism lends itself to a vast prism of interpretations: violent opposition to any artificially-constructed patterns, vast computer-generated tapestries, stochastic pilgrimages, and so on.  Comprehensive data is forthcoming.

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