- Andrew M. Trauger
The Expanded Creation: Paradise
The Seven Realms of the Maker's Kingdom, commonly known as Paradise, is where the Maker resides in all his being, along with the remaining two Paragons of the Triality and all twelve of the Avatars. It is also the afterlife home for those devoted to the Maker during their initial life on Kreth--supplicants of the Maker. Paradise is a seven-fold world of peace and comfort, with each of the seven interconnected realms serving to provide particular pleasures to supplicants living there according to their likes and fancies in life.
Travel between the seven realms is easy, seamless, and frequently unnoticed. And yet, not many supplicants make the journey. The most ardent devotees of the Maker, however, spend countless years experiencing all that Paradise has to offer as they continuously journey ever onward and ever upward to the uppermost realm--the very throne of the Maker himself. Each realm is focused upon and fashioned to encourage a particular virtue.
The first realm, Skrattafell, focuses upon Courage and is the natural destination for worshippers of the Bastion of Faith and the Hall of Champions. It bears a striking resemblance to the world of Kreth, with familiar species of flora and fauna, climates, and an apparent cosmology (sun, moon, stars, etc.). However, throughout the realm, there are many reminders that this is, truly, the Maker's Kingdom. Most of the plants and creatures that inhabit Skrattafell are enhanced beyond their counterparts on Kreth, reminding supplicants that this place is not their home. Particular to Skrattafell are the many battlefronts where endless battle hones the skill and devotion of the Maker's warriors. Those who die in battle are raised the next morning to fight again. Those who succeed merit higher rank and ultimately ascension to Skrattafell City, the city of heroes, where feasting never ends.
The second realm, Pelondra, focuses on Temperance and is the natural destination for worshippers of the Solarium of Light and the Arthouse. It is a surreal and serene place of lasting peace, pastoral and inviting, and filled with qualities that the supplicant finds personally pleasing and supremely satisfying. Those with creative streaks find Pelondra enhances creativity, heightens imagination, and fills them with an endless supply of ideas. So sublime is this realm that many supplicants quickly forget their former lives, becoming immersed in the joy and bathed in the everlasting light that surrounds them.
The third realm, Mexaniki, focuses on Justice and is the natural destination for worshippers of the House of Order and the Church of Stewards. Mexaniki is a land where there is a place for everything and everything is in its place, the clocks are never behind, and the trains are never late. It is an orderly realm, where perfection reigns and systems never fail. Logic always prevails and justice is always served. And yes, there are trains, because Mexaniki is also a mechanical world, but one in which nothing ever breaks.
The fourth realm, Tanglewoods, focuses on Prudence and is the natural destination for worshippers of the Sanctum and the Grove. It is a wild and untamed realm where reality shifts rapidly from one existence to another, a place where chaos is embraced and enjoyed. Tanglewoods is an actually wooded realm, home to the hunter, the explorer, and those who have an abiding love for Nature. It is also a place where families gather in large reunions that sometimes span several acres and last for weeks.
The fifth realm, Sakit, focuses on Faith and is the natural destination for worshippers of the Open Path and the Nexus. It is a realm of tranquility so extreme that literally nothing happens here--no wind, no changing temperatures, no growth, and no decay. It is a place of supreme intellectual devotion and resolve, a place where emotions are purged to allow for singular focus on the Maker. Sakit at first seems lifeless and empty, but with the proper perspective, supplicants find that the journey through stillness provides them with the capacity to see only the Maker himself.
The sixth realm, Cennet, focuses on Hope and is the natural destination for worshippers of the Liberty House and the Celebration House. Where hope springs eternal and every dream comes true, there is great cause for rejoicing. Cennet is a realm of unimaginable bliss where the mind slips into a sort of catatonia zero pain, worry, or unwholesome desires. It is a place of utmost expectation, for the Maker's Throne is near. Those who spend much time in Cennet find that returning to their former lives is a most repugnant notion, for ordinary life, by contrast, is a black pit of hopeless, sucking depression.
The seventh realm, Zynith, focuses on Charity. No one goes straight to Zynith when he dies; it is attainable only by the journey through each of the six other realms or by special invitation or escort. Once here, all former experiences pale and all desire to return to the material world or any of the lower realms fades as the devoted one is transformed by the glory of the Maker. Time ceases to exists and days are no longer marked; eternity begins for the supplicant as all mysteries are revealed and all things are made new.
Due to an incomplete understanding (or tortured interpretation) of the Samantekt, the holy Writ, people frequently disagree about the Maker's Realms. What has been stated here is taken from the teachings of the Zenith of Orthodoxy, who claim to have correctly pieced together what may be known about the afterlife existence of those who worship the Maker. One presumes it is difficult to know what the afterlife is like until one has been there.