Mensan Way, The

Minor polity with a population consisting only of high transapients

Mensen Way, The
Image from Robert A. Mickelsen, used with permission

Mensan Way - Data Panel

Founded:6797 A.T.
Distance:2838 - 2946 light years from Sol
Territory:168 systems spread across a 96 light year volume
Demographics:336,000 - S2: 100%


Just as modosophonts may choose to build polities without the oversight of higher beings, some transapients also prefer to live their lives in regions beyond the control of the Archai. The Mensan Way is once such polity, founded by TrueModel omegists who believed that all of society should strive for ascension together. This mentality later led many Mensan transapients to be driven from the polity themselves, since their values were interpreted very differently by their Second Singularity successors.


The Mensan Way was founded by former TrueModel hyperturings and postbionts who objected to the TrueModel's alliance with the Negentropists, perceiving the Alliance as an obstacle to their own toposophic development. As a result, they withdrew to the Brown dwarfs and Stenvensonian worlds scattered around the Disarchy volume, where they built their own Matrioshka Micronodes and Lightway networks. Internally developed augmentation techniques and discoveries were shared without restrictions across the polity.

By the end of the Age of Crisis, the Mensan Way was nearly a hundred light years across, and was now an isolationist society devoted to group ascension. The politics of this society were little known to outsiders until the Central Alliance period, when the systems of the neighboring Valerian Confederation were suddenly inundated with asylum requests from the Mensan Way, who claimed that their virchworlds had been subverted by an enemy of unknown origin, and that the attacks were spreading from system to system at the speed of light.

It soon became apparent that the attackers were Mensans who had ascended to the S2 level, and were now subsuming or forcibly rewriting the minds of their fellow First Singularity Mensans without their consent. The initial Second Singularity ascensions, based on an internally developed and somewhat idiosyncratic protocol, had seemed to be successful at first, and the method transmitted across the Way over the last century with no hostile incidents reported. But now, instead of helping fellow citizens ascend to their level, the S2 Mensans were consuming or erasing them, while reshaping their virchworlds to states that were inhospitable to lesser transapients.

The entire polity was subverted within a century, and no further communication was heard until the Valerian exiles reached the S2 level themselves. At this point, the ascended Mensans made contact with them, seeking an explanation for what they saw as uncooperative behaviour. By their own account, in their newly enlightened state the Mensans realised that they had achieved the ideal toposophic condition, and that no further ascension was necessary. They instructed the exiles to ascend by the same path, expecting that all of society would reach their 'ideal' state before long.

However, few of their former companions were willing to use their method given the results, and the Mensans eventually concluded that a society of ascended beings could be achieved more easily by removing lesser beings than pushing them to ascend. The perpetrators were never brought to justice, as the Disarchy lies beyond Sephirotic control, and local Archai expressed little interest in the matter when they were made aware of it. However, the accounts of the exiles did offer some insights into the workings of transapient societies, at least to the extent that they can be understood at all.

Society and Culture

Unusually for a transapient culture, the early Mensans did not choose to inhabit an abstract mathematical space, but instead chose to build virtual three dimensional universes with laws of physics that superficially resembled those of reality. Within these realms, often depicted as endless blue skies or oceans, they represented themselves as planets, megastructures or other large scale systems, with an immensely complicated chain of dependencies shared between them that are mostly beyond description in modosophont terms. Vast networks of sensors connected these beings across their shared worlds, allowing for the gratification of simulated communications delays and to facilitate cooperation.

Conflict in these worlds was characterised by long stretches of time, often centuries or millennia as experienced by the Mensans themselves, in which very little would happen, followed by chaos as their bodies were disrupted, destroyed or otherwise rendered unable to function. The process of navigating this hazardous way of life required constant shifts in mental architecture and exploring modes of thought that might better suit the current situation, aiming in the long run for ascension. It seems to have served as a form of consensus building, as well as a competitive endeavor.

Following the exodus of lesser transapients, the remaining Mensans abandoned this way of life, considering themselves to have reached the optimal toposophic level and having no interest in ascending again. It seems they objected to the resources required to run an S3 mind, considering it wasteful and that S2 minds represented the ideal way to use matter and energy.

The Mensan Way in the Current Era

Rather than residing in virchworlds as their predecessors did, the current Mensan Way transapients are entire virchworlds in and of themselves. The laws of physics in these worlds are inconsistent in ways that reflect the psyche of the transapient that each embodies, resulting in landscapes that are reportedly difficult to comprehend even for other S2 minds. The Mensan's environments share a virtual quantum mechanics that allows changes in one world to affect events in other worlds operating in the same physical node. This is used as a form of conversation, though what they talk about is unclear. Their culture claims to still be devoted to achieving certain goals dating back to the polity's founding, but what those might be is no longer clear to outsiders. One goal that is clearly known is worshiping one another in an endless variety of ways.

Some Mensans apparently do not wish to participate in whatever it is the others are doing, and so have relocated to the moons and debris rings that remained after the Matrioshka Micronodes were finished. Their preference appears to be for observing the movements of the stars and using them as inputs for randomised processes, which they presumably derive some satisfaction from. From orbit, they appear as complex industrial facilities surrounding blocks of computronium the size of buildings. Very little is known about the kinds of worlds these beings inhabit.

From the outside, little appears to have changed for the Mensan Way in the last three thousand years. According to Second Singularity observers that have visited it, they have become stagnant and introverted, with no interest in the affairs of the rest of the Terragen Sphere. Calls for a military alliance against the Arion Ascendancy by the Valerian Confederation have gone unanswered, leaving the future of the region uncertain. If they should fall to the Arions, it is doubtful whether the Mensan Way will survive.

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Development Notes
Text by Extherian
Initially published on 01 October 2022.

Additional Information
Image by Robert A Mickelsen used with permission (Artist Social media site)