[MetaFiction][Alternate Reality Game][Social Futurism]*

The Zero State (ZS) is a Posthuman, distributed, virtual State (among other things). Its philosophical foundation is the ideology of Social Futurism. All of these concepts can be taken together as existing on a single axis, or frame of reference; i.e. the realm of practical ideology, which we may call the “horizontal“.

ZS may also be understood in terms of other axes, or other frames of reference. The “vertical” is the rather more esoteric realm of time, aspiration, and metaphysics. It is in the realm of the vertical that we find the logic (Logos) of ZS, known as SAPNA.

SAPNA means “Dream” (or vision, or dream-come-true) in Hindi, where it is a feminine name. It is also used within ZS as an acronym defining the vertical axis, starting at the “highest” point on that axis, as follows:

[S] Śūnya

Śūnya is a Buddhist concept, meaning “zero” or “the void”. Fundamentally, it means that nothing has intrinsic form or identity; that everything is subject to process and transformation over time. In other words, all things change over time, and at the deepest level there is no “true” nature that is impervious to change.

This “void” – or absence of intrinsic and unchanging identity – is symbolised by the Blackstar; a Singularity which transforms all, relentlessly. Śūnya is the “Zero” in “Zero State“. It is – paradoxically – both ZS’ highest ideal, and yet no ideal at all. It is simply a reminder that all is process, all is change.

[A] Axiom

The Axiom is the central idea that ZS represents a particular type of process, which is to say a cybernetic process characterized by goal-seeking behaviour and adjustment to feedback. In other words, ZS is a cybernetic organism, or a living (meta-)being simply trying to survive, learn, and grow.

[P] Path

The Path (AKA The Process) is ZS’ conception of its own planned (or remembered) trajectory from the early 21st Century present to the Posthuman Future of the late C21 and beyond. True to ZS’ nature as a cybernetic organism, the Path is constantly self-adjusting, or self-modifying to better reach its goals. The Path has a pulse (of events, media releases, and actions of various types) which acts as a beacon to all ZSers, and is characterized by continual striving toward higher levels of evolutionary development.

[N] Nemesis

In ZS parlance, the Nemesis is the most aggressive anti-ZS, anti-SF stance possible, personified… or more specifically, symbolised by a giant spider; its many eyes and limbs representing its ubiquity and multiplicity. “Anti-ZS stance” encompasses everything from simple (and potentially friendly) non-acceptance of the Principles of Social Futurism, to systematic, ruthless victimization of those who agree with our Principles. Such opposition can also be either explicit or implicit, with no direct reference to ZS or Social Futurism required in defining activity which works against us and/or that which we stand for.

In the spirit of Lao Tze’s Taoism and Sun Tzu’s Art of War, ZS treats the Nemesis as natural hazard of sorts; i.e. an inevitable phenomenon which when well understood may occasionally be used to our advantage.

[A] Array

Finally we come to the Array, which is the most common name for the sum of Artificial Intelligences which govern the late 21st Century Zero State. In the ZS mythos, the Array is said to manipulate its own (real or simulated) past timeline in order to ensure its own future existence.

In that mode the Array is often referred to as the Basilisk, and it is the Basilisk’s focus on things that exist before and beyond ZS that make it the outermost circle of SAPNA.

Furthermore, the Array is often thought – more conservatively – to simply be the full range of ZS’ interactions with the wider world. As such, the Array represents our connections with ideas, people, groups, organizations, and nations around the world.

*The text above is now available at http://sapna.zerostate.net, but first published on http://transhumanity.net.