The Imnothero Principle

The Imnothero Principle was first postulated by Heinrick Imnothero, a 26th Century astrologer. It can best be summarised as ‘we think therefore it is’. According to the Principle everything is the result of thought. There was no Big Bang, no creation and no evolution. Life, death, the universe, sex, geography and everything else were created by thoughts. Once the majority of the minds in the universe believe something (anything!) then it becomes real and true.

By the 43rd century humanity had spawned some fairly outrageous ideas and all of these had found manifestation somewhere out in the cosmos. The Imnothero Principle also postulates that once the majority of the minds in the universe are aware of and believe in the principle, the universe will dissolve back from whence it squirted.

Part One: Write Off

Write Off is set on a planet named Archmed Bianco which happens to orbit a giant beer can and an empty cigarette packet. It is inhabited by a gaseous life form (Biancans) that exist outside of humanity’s narrow definition of “life” and therefore, according to humanity, do not exist.

Earlwin Zittler is a rebel. He manages to escape from a horribly polluted Earth by forging his “gene screen” results. The gene screen is one of the mechanisms used by the Intergalactic Mining & Settlement Company (IMS) to ensure that its employees are manageable and complacent. Another mechanism is the Errolist religion which teaches that after death, people go to the place where all the garbage they threw away during their life, went. The third mechanism IMS uses to keep its employees compliant is enforced vegetarianism. Earlwin is not able to live on vegetables and hunts down and kills several rats which infest the colony. He cooks and eats them and this induces an altered state of mind similar to the hallucinogenic effects of LSD or mescaline.
Earlwin shares his discovery with Edwinkle Henderon, who in an altered state decides he wants to get outside the dome which houses the colony they inhabit and experience the planet outside. The duo steal a space suit and Ed doses himself up on rats and exits the colony’s protective dome. Once outside he is cut in half by the colony’s defence system. The team which recovers his body finds he is still alive, thanks to the undetectable efforts of several of the planet’s invisible natives.

IMS determines that Ed is not worth the cost of the repairs necessary to restore him as a useful employee. Eventually his life support is turned off, but once again he is kept alive by the invisible Biancans. This makes him a medical anomaly.
Meanwhile his seven year old daughter, Felacia has purchased a space probe from a company on Earth that has gone into liquidation, and sends it out into an area of unexplored space. She discovers a planet made of solid gold. Unfortunately the probe gets drawn into the planet’s fierce gravitational field and crashes before Felacia can use her discovery to pay for her father’s medical treatment.

Earlwin finds another playmate in the form of the colony Chairman’s wife, Sonia Bergonia. They discover that eating rats is an incredible aphrodisiac but due to a rat eradication program, they run out of them. The only other creatures on the colony are cockroaches. They experiment with cockroaches and find that the insects are not an aphrodisiac but do induce X-ray vision. Earlwin and Sonia conclude that these powerful effects must be due to centuries of humanity attempting, unsuccessfully, to poison these two forms of vermin.

X-ray vision allows Earlwin and Sonia to see and communicate with the native Biancans. After a lot of experimentation they discover the best way to consume the cockroaches is to dry them out, crush them up and snort them like cocaine.
Wanting to share his new discoveries with his old friend Edwinkle, Earlwin smuggles some cockroach powder into the hospital where Ed is happily defying all of the principles of medical science. Ed sneezes, blowing the powder into the air where it affects the invisible Biancans by making them aware of even higher life forms which they had never suspected existed. Unfortunately for Ed, the Biancans are distracted for long enough that, without their life-preserving treatment, he finally dies – much to the relief of his baffled doctors.

The Biancans are able to access many more levels of higher life forms until they become aware of The Grand Taroonie. 
The Grand Taroonie informs them that they have overturned the natural order of the universes by making the lowest life form on the planet (the cockroaches) responsible for their higher awareness. The universes cannot tolerate such an inversion and a nearby star system explodes – the blast wave killing all the cockroaches in that particular galaxy.

Part Two: The Cult of the Rat

The Cult of the Rat begins with Earlwin being transferred away from Archmed Bianco due to his proximity to, and involvement in, far too much weirdness for the company to tolerate.

Thanks to Sonia’s husband, the colony’s Chairman, he is promoted to a higher employment status and is able to take up a posting as Planetary Head of Security (PHS) in a planetary system made up of several giant scones orbiting a cloud of jam and cream.
Here he meets and befriends the High Abbot of the local monastery. The monastery is infested with rats. His Arch Holiness tells Earlwin about an insurrection 600 years earlier by a group of Errolist monks who called themselves the Cult of the Rat. He explains that the rats were poisoned by IMS with a substance known as nepkine and reveals that nepkine is the powdered form of karma. Approximately one rat in every 500 was able to survive and if they managed to reproduce, they produced super rats. Once eaten, these rats change a human’s brain waves. This explained the effects that Earlwin had discovered.

Meanwhile Earlwin meets and falls in love with Anniese.

He is called off-planet to help contain a rebellion on the largest scone in the system, one with an atmosphere which is called Scone with the Wind. Its natives, a warlike species called Windians, attempt to drive the Earthlings from their planet. They fail and are all slaughtered, but not before Earlwin is made aware of their God, Cudgelflusk the baker. The Windians tell him of an ancient prophesy which states that when they are wiped out, one warrior will be left standing and the warrior’s son will inherit the spirit of the Windians and avenge their destruction.

Back on their home scone, Anniese announces that she has become pregnant whilst under the influence of nepkine rats. They marry and decide to leave the scone, wanting their child to be born on a “proper” planet.

Enroute to their new home they are knocked off course and find themselves in an area of unimagined space, or more correctly, an area of space which has been imagined by an alien species. This particular species had imagined that the Universe was a giant bowl of magic porridge.

The birth of their son forms the climax of The Cult of the Rat. Three midget surfies ride a wave of magic porridge into their cabin and grant the newborn the gifts of originality, insight and humour (symbolised by a golden trumpet, a jewelled dagger and a plastic duck).

Part Three: The Nepkine Child

The Nepkine Child begins on the giant planet, Vatu. Abel Zittler grows up to be a normal child besides an uncanny ability to make scones. He is unwittingly put through a series of four initiations under the watchful eyes of the Cudgelic Knights (Cudgelflusk’s angels). First is the initiation of fire, then water and it is during the third initiation of air, that Earlwin is killed by some poachers. The fourth is the initiation of the scone (because only somebody who understands the natures of fire, water and air can make a proper scone) which forms Abel’s rite of passage into manhood and creates the basis for Cudgelflusk’s planned second coming.

Anniese falls in love with an ex-soldier called Ardver Kinslorhter who is a victim of the breakdown of IMS at the hands of Ed’s daughter, Felacia. Felacia has spent the intervening years rediscovering her golden planet and is now the richest person in human imagined space (HIS). She has purchased IMS and is systematically dismantling it to avenge her father, Ed.
Ardver is a very competent person, well able to protect Anniese, the planet and anybody else who needs help. This allows Abel to leave Vatu and go exploring with his girlfriend Alice Tovshopping.

They book their passage to Linglefalu, a mining planet at the extreme outer edge of HIS.
An alien race from beyond HIS, known as the Malinquents are attempting to invade HIS. After a series of deep space adventures Abel and Alice are marooned on a small planet outside of HIS which doesn’t conform to any of humanities notions of what a planet should be. It is here that Abel is forced to kill and eat one of the rats which had stowed away on their ship.

Eating nepkine rats sends Abel into the Gods’ Reflection House, an interdimensional prison where the Gods’ reflections have been locked away since the Gods were split into two halves during a battle with the Titans before the beginning of time. Once inside, Abel discovers that he has the power to swap the Gods with their reflections simply by touching their mirrors.

The nepkine wears off after about half an hour and Abel is returned to HIS just in time to be informed that Felacia is in the process of destroying Vatu.

He and Alice race back (it takes months) to find devastation. Miraculously Anniese has survived and they nurse her back to health. Ardver was able to stow away aboard Felacia’s battle cruiser and was taken into space when she tired of destroying the star system. He is able to take over her ship but cannot get Felacia to divulge the firing code.

Meanwhile, Cudgelflusk is also plotting away in the heavenly realm and decides that He needs to unite Felacia and Abel in order to assume the Godly rights to all of HIS for Himself.

Meanwhile the battle fleet is attacked by the Malinquents and without the firing code they are sitting ducks. In order to save them from the aliens, Abel eats a rat and once inside the Gods’ Reflection House he does a deal with the Gods’ reflections and swaps them with all of their gods. This includes Cudgelflusk and the newly empowered god’s reflections fulfil their part of the bargain and save the battle fleet, Felacia and Ardver. Abel and Felacia then dutifully fall in love and despite a lot of religious confusion in the rest of HIS they appear to be going to live happily ever after.

Part Four: The Last Cudgelic Knight

The Last Cudgelic Knight begins with HIS in a dangerously under-godded state. The Gods’ reflections are not gods and most of them are not particularly interested in religion, resulting in a faith vacuum. Imnotherism is spreading through HIS like rust, giving people something credible to believe in. Unfortunately, according to The Imnothero Principle (we think therefore it is) once the majority of people understand and believe the principle, then HIS will dissolve back into the nothingness from which it originally squirted. Without credible gods claiming to have created the whole thing there is nothing to stop people from realising that reality is merely a figment of their combined imaginations.

Abel and Felacia have married by now and maintain contact with Cudgelflusk’s reflection. He is a wimp and calls upon Corporal Jones, the last Cudgelic Knight, to save him from Imere, an ant goddess who does not possess a mirror. Corporal Jones gives Imere a mirror creating her reflection. Abel then eats a nepkine rat and once inside the Gods’ Reflection House he swaps her with her reflection. However, during this process Corporal Jones learns about the fate of the real Cudgelflusk. As the last Cudgelic Knight (due to budget cuts) it is his duty to save his God which he tries to do by kidnapping Abel and attempting to force him to reverse the process.

In an attempt to re-deify HIS Felacia starts her own religion based on her father Edwinkle who died, rose from the dead, died again, rose again and then finally died. She sends Abel into the Gods’ Reflection House to try and find his reflection, which he does.
None of this is able to arrest the rampant spread of Imnotherism and eventually Imnothero saturation is reached and HIS dissolves.
Once time and space are gone, universal consciousness (undifferentiiated isness) is united in the timeless realisation that it enjoyed its creation and so it re-imagines the physical universes back into existence. 

By now, I – The AUTHOR – have been identified as somebody playing God and Abel swaps me with my reflection. The immediate result is that the last chapter is written by my reflection and requires the reader to hold the reversed text to a mirror to read it. The long term result of this literary fiction is that it empowered me to go on and write “Splatterpuss” and “The book of Nasty” without feeling in any way responsible for any of it.

Confused? Wait ‘til you see the movie!