Tales of Terrania Rising

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The immortal Powers brought the cosmos into being as part of a great experiment in consciousness. One site of this experiment is Earth. The inquiry: Will the human species survive into maturity? Can it build Terrania, the just, equitable, Earth-honoring civilization it will need to survive crisis after crisis to reach its full human potential? And during this Long Adventure, will human beings finally learn to stop falling into identification with the Powers, replacing worship with collaboration? What might these archetypal beings start to learn by seeing themselves reflected in noetic human awareness?

Scifi / Fantasy
Craig Chalquist
Age Rating:

Introduction: Welcome to Terrania

Tales of Terrania Rising

Book 1 in the Assembling Terrania Cycle

Craig Chalquist

Copyright © 2021 by Craig Chalquist. All rights reserved.

This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or to actual events is probably intentional.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Welcome to Terrania 3

Terrania Rising 5

The Long Adventure Begins 6

The Namings 18

Enheduanna Claims Authorship 25

Leaving the Nest 37

Gentle Breath of Yours My Sails Must Fill 46

The Case of the Hidden Author 54

Maturation 61

The Wizard’s Tale 65

Pre-Eulogy 78

Departing Fantasyland 86

Norns 90

Devil’s Due 103

Ringside Seat 107

In Gods We Trust 112

Ten Lamps 115

Godsylum 123

West of Eden 131

Raising Cain 140

The Magic Lighthouse 149

Knight of Peace 156

From Intervale to Terrania 168

The Undaunted Dead 192

Vigilance 198

Dreamvale Continuations 221

Whom Gods Restore 222

Testing 1-2-3 229

History Lesson: The Rematch of Blood and Dust 232

Childehood’s End 242

Notes from the Grimoire of Dworkin 266

Fahrenheit 212 292

Fables 300

Abundance 301

E-Service 301

Innocence 302

The Paris Dilemma Revisited 303

The Miracle 304

Three Wishes 307

Revelations 311

Post-Heroic 311

The Loss 313

Reception 314

Knots 316

The Marble 316

Recovery 318

Golden Mean 318

Cycles Beach 319

Enlightenment 319

The Assembly 320

Transfiguration 321

The Test 322

Storied Practicality 323

Dinner Guests 324

Warrior 324

Shadowful 325

Keepers of the Balance 327

Glossary 328

Introduction: Welcome to Terrania

Although speculative fiction is as old as folktale, legend, and myth, today it speaks to a need of planetary consequence: that of imagining our way forward in the face of extinction-level catastrophes, including accelerating climate change. How will we not only survive, but mature? What kind of world culture would we most desire?

Hard to achieve it if we can’t imagine it first.

Some years back, while I mulled what a just, Earth-honoring, and delightful culture of abundance and peace might be like to live in, the word “Terrania” floated through my reveries. Around this fanciful word gathered images, intuitions, ideas—and the stories in this collection.

Between Terrania as a collaborative accomplishment of our genius and maturity and where we are now stretches a long gap indeed. I wanted to show how we got there. Not step by step, of course, but through the perceptions of key characters located in various points throughout human history.

Along the way, we had to renegotiate our relations to Powers larger than ourselves. Ancient peoples called them gods. Jung called them archetypes, although he spent most of his time showing how they show up inside us. But whether archetypes, gods, or God, we have tended to be stuck to them. They reappear in our ideologies and institutes, obsessions and beliefs, whether or not we recognize their primal influence. Some of us bow down to them; others ignore them and by doing so fall under their domination.

How might we eschew the extremes of regression and alienation and instead create a healthy adult relationship with these Powers? Upon this question hangs our chance at coming of age as a species.

The first section, “Terrania Rising,” features tales of our Long Adventure in consciousness in chronological order (by our time reckoning, that of the Coaguum) from Big Bang to the achievement of Terrania. Some of the characters lighting the way are historical; others are fictional, which is to say that they have their own kind of imaginal reality. Both move us forward toward fuller versions of ourselves.

The second section, “Dreamvale Continuations,” picks up and develops tales from other authors. In two cases, “Childehood’s End” and “Notes from the Grimoire of Dworkin,” my stories complete series left unfinished by the death of their authors. In theory, every fictional tale lives somewhere in the Dreamvale. The invitation is for authors and other creatives to add their own versions with an eye to enriching and deepening the grand tale of our Long Adventure.

“Fables” are short bits that fill out the Cycle. They represent experiments with a form of storytelling other than the short story, although all the stories offer their own strange and varying blends of science fiction, fantasy, history, and dream.

The “Glossary” lists the names and attributes of the thirty Powers and gives short definitions of other aspects of the world of the Assembling Terrania Cycle. Articles on the Cycle appear at my website: Chalquist.com/fiction.

For most of my life I’ve been followed around by imaginings and dreams of a better world waiting up ahead of us. It has gone by so many names: Datong, Ketumati, Shangri-La, Golgonooza, Ecotopia, Wakanda, 24th Century… Some of these images—or are they anticipations?—get suffocated by bucolic fantasies of endless leisure; others corrode thanks to cynicism or psychologism. But a key question lingers: What stops us from building, together and from the bottom up, a civilization of everyone’s delight?

As you read these tales, I hope you feel freed to dream into what your version of Terrania has to offer by way of entertainment, consolation—or even motivation to take a step or two in its direction. Perhaps we can walk together.

Terrania Rising

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