GLOSSARY & HINTS: For those who want to get further into the story and metaphor.
Abode of Vision: The deepest part of the Desert where visions offer great desires. The voice of Prince-Nachash comes to seekers to dissuade them from traveling any further to the Highlands.
Acater: Old English word for a purveyor of foodstuffs.
Actuary: A business person.
Amphitheater: A large facility for outdoor events, concerts, and plays. The business community in Receding is used to further a hidden agenda of Prince-Nachash. The business community uses the venue to encourage people to buy their goods from the Market and to distract them with material things. Prince-Nachash wishes to root people in a lie and distract the people from the Truth with an alternative origin story.
Ancient of Days: In the story, this is the first Person of the triune-Godhead. YHWH, Creator of Heaven and Earth, God Almighty. (God Himself)
Baca: Latin word for “berry.” A type of pie our main character steals.
Black Market: A place or order of exchange vendors use that sell product in unlawful ways.
Boat Maker: The forerunner of the Traveler who pointed the people to seek fresh living water outside of Receding. Think of the Boat Maker as a combination of the Biblical characters Noah and John the Baptist.
Cleric: Another name for a priest or clergy.
Desert: The vast area of lifeless sand between Receding and the Oasis which leads to the Highlands. The Desert has several areas which have unique temptations and traps. It is a deadly place where many do not survive. It is always a purifying test for those who seek the Highlands.
Ducit: A member of the Peoples of Ancient’s Rule who guide new residents of the Highlands/Land of Hashem. Each of them has the same name, but carry different staffs which show their personality. They do have a distinct community but not a specific village in Hashem but travel routinely. They do maintain Outposts throughout Hashem.
Dweller: A person who arrives in the Highlands/Land of Hashem who struggles to progress in faith.
Dying Tree: A tree in the Desert that is the place of extreme capital punishment. It is the tree on which the people of Receding killed the Traveler. The blood of the Traveler transformed it into the Mercy Tree. It is proper to think of the Dying Tree as a metaphor for the Cross of Christ.
Ebrius: the Latin word for “drunk” and it means to “full up.”
Emunah: This is an actual Hebrew word which means faithfulness and steadfast living to the inborn conviction that transcends without dismissing reason.
Emunah Valley: The deep valley that runs the length of the Land of Hashem. In the valley, the mist is the thickest from the Living Water and is the purest. Everything grows thicker, bigger, and faster. Those who live in the valley do so to serve others and have developed in character. It is also possible for those new to Hashem to visit in the valley or serve for a short period if led by a person of integrity.
Emunah Valley Farm: A specific farm in the valley visited by the main character where he discovers more about living by faith, it is proper to think of the farm as an allegory for where moral character grows abundantly.
Encampment of Mercy: The camp of the Monks a few days east of Receding where people prepare for the journey to the Highlands. The Encampment is built around the Mercy Tree. It is proper to think of the Encampment as a metaphor for a place of mercy through which salvation is offered.
Face of the Source: In the gnostic-alternative story “Return to the Source,” this is the character that helps Sophia free humanity from the tyranny of the Maker of Days.
Faith-Lilly: An allegorical character expressing the growth and beauty that comes forth by faith in God/Christ. Such faith changes a person from within to manifest beauty in the open air, externally. Note to reader: Faith-Lilly’s husband and primarily Faith-Lilly is a collective allusion to the many biblical examples of redeemed humanity through faith, such as the bride of Christ (the Church) and the potential beauty that comes through loyalty to Christ.
Gate of Baptism: Only by passing through this area between the Desert and the Highlands can a person reach the Land of Hashem. It is proper to understand the Gate of Baptism with Christian Baptism which marks a person as belonging to Jesus Christ.
Geitonas: Greek word for “neighbor.”
Highlands (aka Land of Hashem): The place where the peoples of God dwell. The whole land is a metaphor for life in Christ where people learn and reflect the attributes of God. The vines and plant life are extensions of the metaphor showing growth within life in Christ.
Host (aka The Traveler): The One in whom and in whose land the peoples
of Ancient of Days live. In the story, this characterizes the Second Person of the Triune-Godhead of Christians which is Jesus Christ the Son of God. He is also YHWH, Creator of Heaven and Earth, (God Himself). Important Note: There is wordplay at work with this title (the Host) because its meaning mingles divine power, organic relationship, and hospitality.
Kalogeros: From the Greek word for “good on the inside and out,” Monk in the Encampment of Mercy and our main character’s uncle.
Koritsi: Greek word for “girl.”
Koufos: the Greek word for “deaf.”
Lake Receding: The body of water around which the town of Receding sits and takes its name. The lake is slowly shrinking in size. It symbolizes the world outside of God’s will. The water of the lake must be treated with Shine Root for it to be usable in any way.
Lake Transcendent: The huge deep and extensive body of water in Hashem which receives water from the Royal Falls and has tributaries all over the land watering it with Living Water. Some of the water makes it to the edge of Hashem and flows to the Gate of Baptism.
Land of Hashem (aka The Highlands): The place in the story where the peoples of the Host live. It is proper to think of Hashem (the Name) as a metaphor for living in Christ.
Lecturer of the Map Society: The main spokesperson for the Map Society.
Living Water: This water has its source from the Ancient of Days. This water is life and promotes growth and healing. This water is different from water in Lake Receding which must be treated with Shine Root to produce any benefit.
Maker of Days: In the gnostic-type story “Return to the Source,” this is the character that is created by Sophia. He is who made humanity and the world.
Man of Radiance: This is another name for Host/traveler in the story who represents the second person of the triune-God of Christians.
Map: The information on how to get to the Highlands/Land of Hashem given by the Traveler. It is proper to think of the Map as a metaphor for the Bible. As a side note, all maps in Receding claim to lead to a good source of water.
Map Society: The elite organization in Receding dedicated to the study of the Map. They know much about the Map, its history, and the History of Receding. However, as an organization, they never go to the Highlands, though some members do put faith in the Traveler’s Map. It is a necessary institution in Receding toward historical and social preservation of the Map and the story of the Traveler.
Market: The center of commerce in Receding.
Market Managers: Those in the Market in Receding who oversee all transactions.
Mature Ones: Those in the Highlands/Land Hashem that have matured in the attributes of the Host. They fully identify with Him and exhibit as many of His attributes as possible. It is proper to think of these characters as metaphors for seasoned believers in Jesus Christ.
Mercy Tree: (aka The Dying Tree) The tree at the center of the Encampment of Mercy brought to life by the blood of the Traveler/Host. The fruit of the tree blooms once a year as a reminder of the sacrifice of the Traveler. It is proper to think of the blooming of the tree as a memorial and reminder much like communion.
Mist: Serves in the story as a metaphor for the Holy Spirit, which is the third person of the Triune-Godhead, YHWH, Creator of Heaven and Earth. (God Himself).
Monks of the Encampment: Those who have been to the Highlands and have returned to share their faith with others. It is proper to think of the Monks as a metaphor for believers in Jesus Christ.
Monk’s Star: The light in the sky which when followed from Receding will lead a person to the Encampment of Mercy.
Name (The Name): Another way of speaking of the Tetragrammaton, ‘YHWH’ without vowels. In the Bible, this Name is denoted when ‘Lord’ is used in small caps – Lord.
North Wellstone Neighborhood: The part of Receding where the Seven Pond Lords live and have their warehouses of legal and illegal goods. It is also the site of the well dedicated to Prince-Nachash.
Oasis: The last part of the journey in the Desert before reaching the Highlands. It is proper to think of the Oasis as a metaphor for the drawing of the Holy Spirit and Grace to God.
Ossis: Latin for “bone.”
Overseers: Mature Ones of the peoples that take a leadership role. They lead by example. They live in the highest point of the Land of Hashem and thereby closest to the sacred space. They live to serve and live where they can best be of guidance to the peoples.
Patrol (aka “Search and Rescue Fraternity of Greater Receding”): Search and rescuers who patrol parts of the Desert on horseback looking for people wandering in the Desert. They search for people who do not go by the Map. The city of Receding allows it because it highlights the failure of the search for the Highlands.
Pecora: Latin word for “deer.”
Pede: from the Greek word meaning “foot” or “guide,” Monk in the Encampment of Mercy
Peoples of Ancient’s Rule (aka The Ducits): The people who travel around Hashem as guides for those who come through the Gate of Baptism. They believe that the Ancient of Days is Sovereign over everything and all people and so His way becomes their way. They wish to show this way to anyone they meet which is why they are the guides for Hashem.
Peoples of Deep Thought (aka Scholars of Deep Thought): These people occupy towers in Hashem made of glass which reflects the light coming from the top of the Royal Falls. Inside the tower, are people dedicated to writing and studying. Faith, life, and study occupy their time.
Peoples of Fairness: The fisherfolk who live around Lake Transcendent who supply food for all of Hashem from the Lake. These people seek to reflect the Ancient of Days and exhibit His characteristic of fairness and justice and do so most prominently in the “Marketplace of the Righteous One.”
Peoples of Grace and Mercy: Those who live at the edge of Hashem right at the Gate of Baptism. They welcome newcomers and heal their wounds. The names of the people (Sal, Salve, Assa) all have a root in “healing.” They are also committed to planting and harvesting the flax that makes the white tunic (a symbol of purity) which is the base of all clothes in Hashem.
Peoples of Gentleness and Patience: These people live to reflect the characteristics of the Ancient of Days that they feel is the most important. They believe that Gentleness and Patience are at the core of how the Ancient of Days deals with people. The names of the people (Mitis, Clemens, Lito, and Longan) all have a root from Latin in either “gentleness” or “patience.” The gentleness and patience visually grow out with colorful vines and flowers on the peoples’ clothing which they trim off to share with others.
Peoples of Inspiration: These people express the Ancient of Days through all kind of art. The creativity and life given by Him is reflected in all these people. Songs, art, poetry, and sculptures can all express different aspects of the Ancient of Days and His will. One of the aspects they see clearly about the Ancient of Days is His propensity to give freely in mercy.
Peoples of Lightbearers (aka Village of Lightbearers): These people exude holiness which is one of the defining characteristics of the Ancient of Days. This is shown by the all-white flowers they wear as well as not wearing shoes. Their perspective is that even the land is Holy. Holiness only comes by submitting oneself to the Ancient of Days and humbling oneself (taking off shoes).
Pia: From the Latin word for “loving,” Monk in the Encampment of Mercy
Pond: A source of dirty water north of Receding which is controlled by the Pond Lords. It is treated with so much Shine Root that one drink can be addictive.
Pond Lords: The “mafia-type” leaders who have cornered the market around the Shine Root Rich Pond. There are seven which are stylized after the “Seven Deadly Sins.” They all live in mansions in North Wellstone Neighborhood which is also the site of the well dedicated to Prince-Nachash.
Lord Acedia has a large tent where one can while away the hours doing nothing. (sloth)
Lord Avarita buys and sells anything for profit. (greed)
Lord Gula: has tents that offer food and drink non-stop. (gluttony)
Lord Ira sells murder for hire. (wrath)
Lord Luxuria has a tent full of men and women who sell their bodies for pleasure. (lust)
Lord Superbia cuts people’s flesh and arts tattoos to make them more beautiful. (pride)
Lord Tristia has tents where people go to die because of sorrow. (sorrow)
Prince-Nachash (aka Lord of Receding): The Master of Evil which has duped the people of Receding into rejecting the Ancient of Days. He has done this through lies and false religion. He wishes to be the hero of humanity and puts forth himself as the “Truth-teller” to humanity. It is proper to think of this character as a metaphor for Satan.
Puella: Latin word for “young girl.”
Quake (the Great): A seismic event which split the world into Receding, the Desert, and the Highlands. This Quake changed the way water is received. It is an event that was historical, but most people are unsure as to why it happened.
Receding: The largest population of people in the world surrounding this city which has built itself around a lake that is continuously shrinking in size. Receding is divided into neighborhoods which differ in architecture. It is a city of low light as it sits in the shadow of massive cliffs to the east. The Desert surrounds the town.
Return to the Source: A play performed yearly in Receding which highlights Prince-Nachash as the hero of Receding and refashions the history of Receding to exclude the Ancient of Days. Most people in the town of Receding believe the story presented in the play rather than actual history.
River of the Royal Falls: The Royal Falls flow into Lake Transcendent and branches out all over the Land of Hashem watering it with Living Water.
Royal Falls (aka The Royal Veil): The great waterfall of Living Water that comes forth from the place that is beyond the Highlands/Land of Hashem. It is also called the Royal Veil because it serves as a veil to the most sacred space where the Ancient of Days dwells.
Rurigena: Latin word for “villager.”
Sand Pit of Serpent Winds: The second section of the Desert encountered by travelers. The area which bears in the wind a scent of water to a false oasis where people can get lost and die.
Sef: From the Greek word for “wise,” Monk in the Encampment of Mercy
Shine Root: The most widely grown plant in Receding which is used to make water drinkable and usable because all water in Receding is unclean. It is also used for medicines and other products. Shine Root requires a great deal of light to grow and thereby is grown on the west side of Receding where light is more present. The Shine Root is the cause of the physical sores which afflict new residents of the Highlands/Land of Hashem.
Sofos: From the Greek word for “wise,” Monk in the Encampment of Mercy
Sophia: In the gnostic-alternative story “Return to the Source,” this is the feminine deity who forms the Maker of Days in her desire to be like the Source whom she loves and from whom is a fragment. Many people in Receding believe the alternative origin story and worship Sophia.
South Rim Neighborhood: Another area of Receding. It happens to be where many of the Map Society live.
Tarpatto: Greek word for “trouble.”
Traveler (aka the Host of the Ancient of Days): The prophet and witness who came to Receding to show the way to the Highlands. The Traveler was killed and from His death, the Mercy Tree was sprung. It is proper to think of the Traveler as Jesus Christ.
True Vine: Another way of talking about the Host/Traveler. He is the source of life. The people of Hashem wear vines and flowers as an extension of Him. Their vines come from His vine; they are part of Him.
Valley of Hunger: The first section of the Desert encountered where travelers are tempted to eat all their provisions. Many do so and die of starvation in the Desert.
Veru: From the Greek word for “to cook,” Monk in the Encampment of Mercy
Vines: People of Hashem wear vines or flowering vines as part of their clothing to signify that they are branches of the True Vine. Their garments are an extended metaphor that they are growing in the nature of the True Vine (God). The same is true for the vines and other plant life described as making up their homes and huts.
Water: The physical representation of the presence of the Ancient of Days. In the Land of Hashem, the water is Living Water. In Receding, it is non-life-giving water.
Weak Ones: Innocent and or disabled children in the Land if Hashem who embody the humble nurturing gracious way of God.
Wells: These sources of water in Receding are advertised as pure living water, but are not. The wells are full of water treated with Shine Root and are not as advertised. It is proper to think of the wells as metaphors for different religions and philosophies which are substitutes for the Truth found in God and Christ.
Well 1: Presents some ideas of New Age Philosophy.
Well 2: Presents some ideas of Islam.
Well 3: Presents some ideas of Hinduism and Buddhism.
Well 4: Presents some ideas of the Mormons.
Well 5: Presents some ideas of Satanism.
White Linen: The necessary garment people receive entering the Highlands/Land of Hashem that represents purity (being washed clean of sin).
Zitano: Comes from the Greek word “zitanos” which means “beggar.”