A 1966 drawing by Szukalski of a never-done monument, reproduced in Struggle: The Art of Szukalski (also see previous posts).

Monument to Jules Stein Eye Institute, 1966. Click for larger version.

“Ever since the eye hospital was built in Westwood, California, I have wished to make a monument to its donor, Jules Stein. Not knowing his face, I placed the portrait of a stranger in its place in my drawing of the project.

“He is eagerly stepping forward from his prayerful kneeling position to magically touch the blind child’s eyes so that it may see. To see his wonderful world will be the most glorious of it’s experiences, for, like any child, it is but a foreigner…

“Please note the peacock feathers that make up the pedestal to this monument. It has two kinds of eyes; the ones that see and the ones that have no eyeballs. Instead of Wings of Inspiration, I gave the donor of this superb hospital the Eyes of Inspiration” (p109).

On the eye-wings is an inscription that reads:

To see,
To perceive,
To foresee,
To conceive,
So to create
More light.

Modrons as Contemplative Geometry

September 6th, 2008

Four drawings of modrons, first appearing in the AD&D Monster Manual II (1983). Modrons are geometrically-derived creatures that embody an order irrespective of morality.

Monodrone (p87).

“The Plane of Nirvana is a plane of balance and absolute order [lawful neutral]. It is equally hot and cold, equally light and dark, and made of equal parts of solid and liquid. The chief inhbitants of this plane are known as modrons and live in a rigid caste system under the absolute rule of Primus the One.

“Nirvana is laid out like a great wheel with the Tower of Primus at the hub. The wheel is infinitely wide but divided into 64 sectors, each sector with its own governor. Four sectors become a region, maintained by its ruler, and 4 regions are ruled by a viceroy as a single quarter. The 4 quarters are ruled by Primus. Access to this great wheel is possible by astral means or by portals that connect to Arcadia, Archeron, and the Plane of Concordant Opposition, but the locations of these portals change as the wheel revolves around the Tower of Primus.

“In modrons’ society all beings are classified, all actions regulated, and all procedures deliniated. Obedience to the laws is immediate and unquestioned. The society is separated into the base modrons who are the largest in number and act as the servant class, and the hierarch modrons, who are the leaders, enforcers, and governors” (p86).

The modronic castes are based on mathematical progressions: the base modrons (with their populations given in parenthesis) include monodrones (300+ million), duodrones (55+ million), tridrones (6+ million), quadrones (1.5+ million), and pentadrones (500,000+); the hierarch modrons include decatons (100), nonatons (81), octons (64), septons (49), hextons (36), quintons (25), quartons (16), tertians (9), secundi (4), and Primus (1).

Tridrone (p88).

“Modrons are not affected by any illusions or magic that affects the mind (beguilement, charm, domination, hold, hypnosis, and sleep are examples). Fear and other emotion spells have no effect, and the modrons are unaffected by attacks based in the Positive or Negative Planes (including life-draining or life-stealing)” (p86).

Nonaton (p89).

The perceptual abilities of modrons increase according to their rank in the hierarchy.  For example, a monodrones’ senses are less than humans’ and tridrones’ senses equal to humans’, whereas septons, in addition to hearing, sight, smell, taste, and touch, have the two additional senses of ESP (with 30-foot range) and detect magic.  The Primus itself can communicate telepathically and immediately with any creature in Nirvana.

Primus, The one and the Prime (p91).

“Primus is a huge being who rises from the energy pool in the central part of his great tower at the center of the plane, although the Prime One may also appear as a normal human. In giant-form, Primus’ hands are unseen, the right swathed in rainbow-bright lights, the left clouded in inky darkness. Those creatures struck by the light-hand must save vs. spells or be teleported to Arcadia [tending good]; those struck by the left must save or be sent to Acheron [tending evil]” (p91).