The Immortal Spirits are the deities of the Tulaki and other adherents of the Path of Tulak. Their role is to act as an example and source of inspiration to the peoples of the Dominion, and encourage them to perform tremendous feats in their chosen field. It is thought that the Immortal Spirits favour those who follow the path they trod in life, and are the source of the superlative feats of Tulaki Heroes.
The Path of Tulak teaches that when a mortal being dies, their spiritual essence leaves their body and passes into another realm of existence - a dimension of pure spiritual energy, where its strength and resolve is tested by the other inhabitants of that place. Those who strove for excellence in life, and forged their spirit in the fires of competition and struggle are mighty in this realm of spirit. These powerful spirits can carve a place for themselves in one of the hierarchies of the spiritual realm and become powerful Immortals. The greatest of mortals, whose deeds are hewn deep into the bedrock of history, will rule in the spiritual realm for as long as their legend reverberates in the physical one. This is the goal of all who walk the Path of Tulak.
It is also held by the ecclesiocracy that the Immortal Spirits retain their strength through the power of memory - the memory of those in the physical realm. This connection encourages the Immortal Spirits to keep watch over mortals, to offer guidance and support and to reaffirm their memory in those who would follow them afterwards. If an Immortal Spirit rejects their mortal followers, then they are abandoned, and lose power, becoming weaker and finally fading into the mass of voiceless, nameless spiritual energy. It is to this background energy that the slovenly and weak-willed return to, and from which the spirits of new mortals is born. This cycle of struggle, death, reward and rebirth encourages the people of the Dominion to respect those who have gone before, and look to their guidance and example to carve their own place in the realm of spirit. It also teaches them to respect those who would follow after, so that others do not bear grudges against them or that their deeds are picked apart as illusions and falsehoods, all to protect their memory from being undermined after their death.
It is possible for mortals to become Devoted to one of the Immortal Spirits with the help of a priest performing a Devotion Ceremony. This draws the attention of the named Immortal Spirit to that person, with the expectation that they are declaring themselves willing to follow that Spirit's path, and accept their guidance on how to achieve greatness in a similar manner. Devotion is the first step towards becoming a Hero.
Although there are countless Immortal Spirits acknowledged by the Dominion ecclesiocracy, each with their legend and purview, twelve stand out as the most well-known and cited by priests. It is believed that these Immortal Spirits are all heads of their various hierarchies, the greatest known masters of their art or discipline. The priests of the Dominion hold these twelve as the pinnacle of what a mortal can be, and use them as their prime examples to guide the Dominion as a whole on its path to expansion and greatness. Many of these Immortal Spirits were named as the Tulaki became a united, purposeful people, and began their expansion outward - similar conditions of struggle have been hard to replicate as the civilisation of the Dominion advanced.
Domains: Athletics, physical prowess
A heroic figure, an early disciple of Tulak, who sought physical perfection through honing the body. Akal never refused a challenge, and was renowned as a superlative wrestler and athlete even into advanced age.
Domains: Hunting, strategy
A legendary hunter, who crossed the entire homeworld, seeking out the fiercest and deadliest prey to challenge their skill. From before the time of Tulak, she was one of the historical figures Tulak referenced as having become Immortal Spirits.
Domains: Combat, war
The most recently ascended of the prime pantheon of Immortal Spirits, Dalathak was a Dominion warrior during the First Tulaki Invasion of the Orion Arm. He led a detachment of ground forces, and seemed to consistently end up in the most difficult and hard-fought battles of the Invasion War, often personally heading the push or action that led to victory or broke a stalemate. He was killed in battle in the Concord Sector in 3390PT, after decades of heroic exploits. He is retrospectively considered to have been a living Talisman of Dominion might, and his loss led to a slow reversal of fortune for the Invasion Fleet, culminating in the mutual defeat over Arda II a decade later.
Domains: Terraforming, farming
Renowned for re-routing a moon into orbit around her home planet, Nosk-Teket IV to induce tidal activity, and later coordinating the extensive cultivation of its wild hinterlands into productive farmland. Nosk-Teket IV is now one of the great breadbasket worlds of the Dominion, and Dekal is credited with astonishing feats of genius engineering and science, as well as leadership and inspiration. to forge her vision into a reality.
Domains: Engineering, technology
Dothak was an inventor and engineer as the Tulaki were making their first steps towards interplanetary spaceflight. He is credited with the invention of practical and portable energy weapons and energy shields, which paved the way for the development of Tulaki warp drives. His singular proficiency with engineering and Etheric Science led to the priesthood to declare him a powerful Immortal Spirit on his death.
Domains: Leaders, visionaries
A poorly-understood figure who united the Tulaki on their home planet, and began the push for developing Faster-Than-Light travel and crusading outwards to spread the Path. True accounts of their life and deeds are fragmentary and poor, but enough to point to their existence and name. It is thought that prior to gaining an understanding of how memory affects the spiritual realm, a schismatic reactionary element within the priesthood sought to annihilate all records of Enki the Unifier.
Domains: Politics, the Law
Kalila is credited with forging early Tulaki colonies and the first few alien species they encountered into the Tulaki Dominion, with the explicit mission to spread the Path of Tulak to the entire galaxy. Her political acumen was able to reconcile the competitive Tulaki spirit with the alien mindsets and goals of those species they had discovered. She was able to communicate her grand vision of a single political entity with a united purpose, and coordinate the fractious priesthood into a ruling body that remained at enough distance to prevent friction.
Domains: Science, exploration
Lukan was the greatest of the early Tulaki interstellar explorers. His ship and crew braved countless dangers to chart thousands of systems and worlds, and brought many invaluable discoveries back to Origin. Stories of Lukan’s life are so numerous (and often far-fetched) that he has become more of a popular mythological figure than a purely historical one, and serialised sensational broadcasts of his many adventures are very popular.
Domains: Protection, architecture
One of the ancient legendary figures referenced by Tulak in the codification of the Path, Neboro ruled a mountainous region of Origin beset on all sides by hostile nations. Neboro designed a mighty ring of fortifications to protect her domain, with only a single point which allowed ingress, and placed her personal fortress there. After many years of raids beaten back, when all the surrounding nations sent armies to sack her domain, she sacrificed herself and her fortress using a “column of light and fire”, which annihilated the opposing armies and collapsed the mountain pass, allowing her domain to prosper unmolested by enemies.
The Codifier of the Path
Domains: Philosophy, thought
A legendary thinker who gave purpose and unity to those who would become the Tulaki. Her philosophy and insight gave structure and coherence to the proto-religion that became the Path of Tulak, but only came after many decades of striving for knowledge, travelling across the world of Origin and debating with hundreds of scholars, politicians and cult leaders. It is believed that her singular insight allowed her to receive guidance directly from the Immortal Spirits without being Devoted.
Domains: Travel, piloting
A master of space travel and piloting, Volkut pioneered the use of natural wormholes to traverse huge distances, albeit at considerable risk. Volkut’s intrepid cargo ship delivered emergency supplies and ensured the survival of numerous early Tulaki colonies. Volkut is considered to have ascended to become an Immortal Spirit a few years after his ship disappeared in the Coreward Sector.
Domains: Diplomacy, mediation
Renowned for negotiating peace with the first few alien species encountered by the Tulaki, and allowing the Path to be spread by directing the first xeno-missionaries. Wesrix's adaptive doctrine for missionary work proved extremely effective, modifying the way the Path was presented to mesh with the pre-existing beliefs of each new world. The greatest challenge for Wesrix was the dogmatic refusal of the ecclesiocracy at the time to allow for variation, and Wesrix is often cited as an example when the Path establishment is seen as becoming overly dogmatic and calcified.
Immortal Spirits exist as part of a series of hierarchies, usually led by a powerful spirit with responsibility over a broad field of endeavour. Their lesser subordinate spirits have more narrowly focused purviews - concentrated on a specific discipline or planet. There are many of these Immortal Spirits, and according to the ecclesiocracy their power and influence tends to wax and wane a bit more than the most powerful spirits.
Players are free to create their own Immortal Spirits that are important to their group, and they may be integrated into other parts of the game. Important things to consider when creating a spirit include its name and title, its area of expertise, what known factual knowledge exists about its life, and any miracles or prominent individuals that may have been associated with. We may involve prominent Spirits in the game, but may make alterations to them for plot and story purposes. Other Immortal Spirits may be introduced to the game by plot, discovered by players or through other factors.