Excerpt from the Book of Gifts
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Foreword

When creation was new, and man first walked the Earth, there were two gods.
MEKHANE, our paragon of shining bronze, who gifted us with our mind, our knowledge, and our desire for order.
And The FLESH, the antithesis to MEKHANE's holiness, who created our body, our instincts, our primal urges.
Eternally locked in combat were the two, for each wished to be worshipped and have their ideals spread unto man.
But the FLESH could never destroy our spirit, our hope for tomorrow, our shining soul.
For MEKHANE is and will always be our eternal guardian, and we should be thankful to be His children.
This miracle was one of his many gifts to us, and it shall always be remembered in this holy book.

Of the Rise and Fall of the Darkness

One. The FLESH sought to cause chaos, to stray man from its path of progress and knowledge back to the primal state of being that preceded order and peace. It longed for control, to be revered as the god it was once again.

Two. And so The FLESH, in all its insidious nature, devourer of all that is ordered and intelligent, formed a plan. A plan to bring about the fall of the ways of MEKHANE.

Three. A plot to turn man against one another, to distract them from their destiny of invention and plunge the world into a darkness. And so The FLESH spoke unto its profane followers, "Go, and purge MEKHANE's divine knowledge, so that your fellow man will never accept His ways."

Four. A scheme was wrought to exploit man's primal nature, and use it to destroy all that had been created before. For The FLESH created man, and wished to remove the mind MEKHANE had so generously given it.

Five. And man, as those not enlightened in the ways of MEKHANE are wont to do, was ensnared by the promises of individual gains over the good of man. They returned to their lusts for power, their carnal desires, their greed to distance them from their brothers.

Six. The roots were too deep to be removed by man, for they were set by something much more than a mortal. The battles raged on, but the enlightened were few, and the twisted armies of The FLESH had no qualms about purging all those who would seek to do good.

Seven. When MEKHANE's devout could do no more against the tide of FLESH, the light of His divine doctrine shone through. MEKHANE saw His children in peril, and in His kindness, aided them.

Eight. MEKHANE, in all His wisdom, freed the minds of those talented in arts, science, philosophy, and more. He removed their bonds to The FLESH, and enabled them to soar ever higher.

Nine. These Freed Ones, now unfettered by the limits of The FLESH's machinations, created wonders of simple materials. They achieved the greatest that one could achieve with steel, paint, or ink on parchment.

Ten. And as the Freed Ones freed others with their miracles of creation, MEKHANE's knowledge and order was reborn. It was a glorious revolution of the minds that, even now, centuries later, is still driving us towards apotheosis and perfection.

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