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The Oracle of the Hypogeum is a deck of 48 cards, each card based upon a sacred symbol from the Ancient Quatrian culture. The Quatrians used these symbols to help remythologize their landscapes, both internal and external.
Although specific traditions and customs varied from biome to biome, the ideas represented by these glyphs were universal. They could be found, individually or collectively, on everything from doorposts to road signs to tattoos. They were said to have been taught to humans by ANTHUOR, the Quatrian deer power, who communicated the symbols via shapes seen in the murmurations of starlings. The starlings took flight from within the Hypogeum, a mysterious stone chamber central to Quatrian myth.
As ubiquitous within Quatrian culture as corporate logos are in Late Capitalist neoliberalism, the primary use for the Symbols seems to have been a way to express meaning across a variety of cultural contexts. Just as someone living in Southeast Asia might recognize the “Golden Arches” as representative of McDonald’s, so a Quatrian from a sub-polar settlement would understand that the symbol for “Life Force” (vimna) depicted a plant emerging from a seed.
Every society practiced some form of what we now refer to as “Divination,” and the Quatrians were no exception. That said, our understanding of divination (via Tarot Cards, the I Ching, etc.) depends on a much different conception of time than that of the various societies of Quatria.
Many attempts have been made to explicate the way this society considered time, with varying degrees of success. Translating this concept into something conceivable by our modern sensibilities and habits has proved exceptionally difficult. The simplest way to explain this attitude would be that Quatria exists outside of what we see as “past, present, and future.” As such, “fortune telling” becomes rather pointless.
Instead, Quatrians conceived of experience as a kind of “bubbling up” of instances from an underlying Ground of Being. Instead of our linear timeline, or even something cyclical, “time,” in Quatria, resembled the surface of a lake, and “instances” as susurrations on the face of the water.
It may help to consider time as an enormous shoal of sardines. No single sardine can conceive of the entire school; instead, each individual fish can only react to its nearest neighbors. If a predator approaches from beneath, the fish closest to the predator move to flee it, then their neighbors, then theirs, etc. By the time the fish at the top of the school receive the cue to flee, it doesn’t matter to them what caused the initial movement. Indeed, the sardines at the top of the formation may never even know whether it was a shark or a barracuda that caused them to need to flee.
Quatrian “divination” seems to have been used to identify other factors causing the entire singularity at which the reader found herself. Thus, the diviner uses the cards to quite literally make a map, of consciousness or otherwise.
The Oracle of the Hypogeum consists of the following:
32 Entity Cards 8 Magicians 8 Monsters