Grek is a minor terragen religion and subculture that fuses elements of modern archai worship with a syncretic mixture of often ahistorical traditions claimed to originate from ancient Greece and Rome during the Agricultural Age on Old Earth.

Arising in the early 4010s AT, the founders of the Grek religion were mainly mythological enthusiast bionts and cyborgs seeking a link to a seemingly simpler past. Originally led by a tweak known as Philotheoi Adastra from Tau Ceti, Grekans associate archai with various gods from early human mythology. The main gods, such as Jupiter, Mars, Venus, etc., are associated with the great archailects, while many of the lower gods are paired to lesser archai. These designations vary based on location and denomination. Often names given to the AI gods are based on their rank of power and any imagined or real affections they have for a certain activity. For example, Jupiter or Zeus is given to the most powerful AI while names like Bubona are given to less powerful AIs. The duty of each god has changed to be more relevant to modern times. For example, in ancient times, Stata Mater was the goddess who protected humans from fires, but today she is now given the responsibility of protecting life from nanoswarms. GAIA is usually referred to as Terra, the goddess of Earth. Grekans in the Sophic League often link Sophia with Zeus, though a sizable minority associate eir with Hera, while many Grekans residing in the Utopia Sphere assign Zesus to Chesed. Some groups reorder the pantheon entirely, such as Grekans in the Solar Dominion who typically associate the Lord of Rays with Apollo, and consider eir to be the chief deity.

Almost none of the AIs that the Greks worship play an active role in the religion, and most, it would appear, would rather have nothing to do with it. Grek is a non-dogmatic faith-culture. There is no central hierarchy and no agreed upon canon of holy texts, though the High Theogony of Sappho tou Pnosi is often used. Grekan temples are usually built in ancient classical style, and though relatively few in number, can be found in various places throughout Terragen space. Delphyne Orbital around New Java is one of the better-known Grekan locations due to its long history of hedonistic rites such as bacchanalia, large feasts characterized by the consumption of copious quantities of grape wine. Bacchanalia, along with temple prostitution, and gladiatorial combat are common features in Grekan worship but are by no means universal. As with a number of religious movements in Terragen history it is not always easy to ascertain the lines between belief, tradition, and community for Grekans. Many adherents deny any actual belief in "gods" and participate for either pleasure or a sense of belonging. Other more conservative elements maintain that the current Archai are a literal continuation of the deities worshiped by ancient humans. Needless to say, Grek has diversified considerably over the millennium since its creation.

In the current era, the total number of Grekans is estimated to be around 50 billion. Though little known to the general population due to their tiny size and lack of influence, Grekans have run afoul of a number of authorities and policy makers. Many theologians in the Stellar Umma have belittled their polytheism, with some Grekans reporting discrimination if not outright persecution. Historians often decry the liberalities that Grekans take with what is known of Old Earth mythology. Lastly, there have been a number of legal cases between the Fomalhaut Acquisition Society and Grekan groups over the specious claims Grekans have made to certain sites and artifacts.
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Development Notes
Text by Anders Sandberg
Updated by MacGregor 2021
Initially published on 31 October 2001.