The third planet orbiting a medium sun in a small galaxy in one possible universe was notable for its abundance of liquid water and an oxygen rich atmosphere, thanks to the lush plant life which filled the oceans and lay like a verdant blanket across the land masses. Invertebrate life forms abounded in the seas and on land, insects and worms, crabs and spiders.
One lone branch diverged from its invertebrate predecessors, an insect resembling a grass hopper with two powerful jumping legs and three segmented grasping limbs which evolved a central nervous system, a central brain and a rudimentary back bone. Though small in size compared to some of the immense beetle-like species which grazed the lush vegetation like two-ton lawnmowers, this new species relied on its superior reasoning abilities to quickly establish itself as the dominant predator on the planet. The species differentiated over time and filled many different environmental niches, the older and smaller species moving into the forest canopy when larger species evolved which came to dominate the ground. After millions of years of evolution, a beneficial mutation arose in a small mountain population which drastically increased brain size and intelligence. Offspring born with this mutation exhibited powerful mental abilities including telepathy and telekinesis. They rose to positions of prominence within the group and soon had spread the mutated gene through their numerous offspring until in only a handful of generations the entire population of this small subspecies exhibited these mental powers. The 2112 members of the species joined their minds together to form a collective consciousness, and in so doing unlocked the secrets of effective immortality through complete mental mastery of body and mind. This species and the collective were later referred to as the Chaldeth, although they made no use of words and names after becoming the collective and had previously only communicated through hand gestures.
The Chaldeth Era
The collective was able to meet its food needs easily; it took only a small fraction of the mental abilities of the collective to enter the simple brains of the teeming invertebrates and convince them to willingly march themselves into the waiting maws of the Chaldeth. There were no internal divisions to weaken the Chaldeth, as each individual’s mind had been subsumed into the collective, and all individual desires and egos burned away in the white heat of the combined mental energy. The collective’s decisions were unanimous, but it would be more correct to think of the collective as a single entity than a group of individuals who all agree on the same course of action. Most of the collective’s time was spent in meditation, honing its mental abilities to a fine edge capable of nearly any imaginable form of energy manipulation. As the years past into centuries, and the centuries past into millennia, the Chaldeth became more and more disconnected from the physical world and spent ever longer periods of time engaged in deep meditation. During these periods, to an outside observer the Chaldeth might have seemed like statues, covered by moss, scarcely breathing, hearts scarcely beating, bodily processes slowed to a near halt but the collective mind deeply engaged in what had become the consuming passion of the Chaldeth; a desire to understand the purpose of existence, and the purpose of the collective. For the collective had become more and more sure of one thing; that the awesome power that it was developing must have a use; that there must be some reason that the collective was granted these abilities.
The Infinite Possibility Matrix
The Chaldeth first became aware of the infinite parallel planes which coexisted with the reality and universe which they inhabited through their study of the nature of energy. The mental breakthrough which had gained the Chaldeth effective immortality through their mastery of their own bodies and minds also allowed them to begin manipulating energy in its various forms through mental exertion alone. After ages of studying and experimenting, the collective came to the startling conclusion that energy was constantly leaping into and out of existence as if from nothing. This flew in the face of everything they thought they knew about the nature of reality, because they had previously believed that energy could neither be created nor destroyed, but could only take on new forms. The collective focused its sizzling mental energy on this problem and after a few thousand years soon became aware that the universe they knew was only one of an infinite number of possible realities through which energy moved freely, only seeming to appear and disappear. In reality, every moment that ever could have been, ever was now, and ever could be are all coexisting at the same moment, tied together by the energy which forms the matrix of reality. They termed this infinite collection of coexistent planes the “Infinite Possibility Matrix” (IPM). There is only one “now”, and what we perceive as a continuous forward progression through time is actually a particular constellation of moments scattered across a particular number of planes in this infinite possibility matrix of the present. Individual lives are experienced as if the individual was the same entity throughout a long life, whereas a person’s life span is actually a near infinite collection of “moments,” and the “person” who experiences each moment is a different person from the person who experienced every other moment. These “people” all exist at the same time in the IPM, in essence removed from time and frozen as part of one particular possible combination of all the energy in existence. Every other possible decision or choice that the individual could have made likewise exists. What we call an “individual life” is actually a particular thread which denotes one possible way that a small portion of the total energy in existence could become bound up in a sentient body, experience changes, and then become another form of energy. Each thread denoting a life is bundled next to other threads which denote a similar but slightly different collection of moments. One life thread may include fewer moments than another, representing a life cut shorter in one thread than the other.
This intrigued the Chaldeth immensely, and they began a systematic mental exploration of the parallel threads, beginning with those closest to their own. As they progressed through this study, they became aware of noticeable currents of energy which seemed to be emanating from particular sources, which the Chaldeth termed “energy wells.” Tracing these currents towards their sources, the Chaldeth soon discovered that certain threads seemed to contain a disproportionately high amount of total energy when compared to the planes surrounding them. They hypothesized that certain possible moments may temporarily draw a disproportionate share of the total energy which flows through the infinite possibility matrix. They called these energy charged moments “nodes,” because the energy seemed to stem from the fact that each node represented a radical juncture or turning point, a moment from which many threads which had been the same diverged.
As energy jumps back and forth across threads, certain nodes receive a disproportionately high amount of energy because of the tremendous amounts of threads sharing that node. The Chaldeth next realized that their own thread of experience, the events that they knew as their own history, represented what seemed to be an anti-node; there was less possible energy on their own plane than any other thread of existence which they had yet become aware of, seeming to indicate that the choices made by the Chaldeth since they attained mastery were the choices that would always have been made by any other possible Chaldeth, and thus drastically reducing the total number of possibilities.
Looking “forward”* in time through the infinite possibility matrix is nearly impossible, because it is only through having experienced a particular thread as reality that you can perceive and organize possible realities as being in the “past,” and sifting through the infinite possibilities that could occur farther down the thread of an individual’s experience is very difficult because the mind has no way to structure or organize the data. The Chaldeth could not see their future, but they did see that the world they lived on as the sole sentient beings was the exception to the universal norm; some other possible threads only had one sentient being, but most had many, from dolphins and octopus to humans and elves, every possible combination of energy into sentient life forms imaginable.
Pursuing their studies farther, the Chaldeth soon became aware of currents of entropic energy emitting from particular nodes, from which all the entropic forces of reality seemed to emanate. The pull towards division and disorder, hatred and chaos, was due to the energy radiating from particular malignant beings, great Demons whose very possible existence sent shock waves through all other possible realities. Even in moments far removed from the moments of the possible universe which contained these malodorous beings, their shadow was cast and their energy emanations felt. The thread of possible moments we call human history is replete with references to the forces of evil, and they are called many names, but the Chaldeth had discovered the true source of these forces as humankind has never done. These mysterious beings deeply repulsed the Chaldeth, who valued order and conformity, patience and rational thought and action above all else. After a thousand years of meditation on the problem, a radical idea began to gain sprout in the collective mind.
(Again, see this post if you want to know what the Chaldeth did next!)
 Remember that time as a linear progression from beginning to end does not apply to the IPM, where every possible moment which ever could have been, could be now or could be in the future all coexist in one present moment.