Neo Rationalism

When mankind first settled the stars, it did so with the light of science and technology, following a rational course. The Rise of Maradon and their armies of psychic space knights swept away the rational with their Akashic Mysteries, leaving the Galaxy (from the perspective of the previous colonists) in a dark age bereft of science. In the long, intervening years, resentment grew and mixed with a sense of awe and worship of the "golden age" that came before it, which evolved rational thought into a "neo-rationalism" that favored seeking hidden doctrines in the words of ancient masters over experimentation and exploring new possibilities.

With the fall of the Alliance and the rise of the Valorian Empire, Neo-Rationalism once more rules the Galaxy, and intends to impose its enlightened perspective on all of the superstitious cults that have so long suppressed "rational thought," while on the edges of the Galaxies, older forms of rationalism buck the trend towards experts-over-experimentation, and neo-rational social experiments in robotic equality have gone horribly awry, giving rise to the Cybernetic Union.

Even so, those who follow the strictures of the ideology manifest brilliant intellects, deep foresight, expert control over their minds and their bodies and seem to have an unparalleled skill at statecraft.

Principles of Neo-Rationalism

  1. True understanding of the universe is the only worthy pursuit
  2. True understanding of the universe can only be achieved by a rational mind through science
  3. Science achieves understanding only through empirical research, logic and experimentation.
  4. Man is an irrational animal in his natural state; the irrational, like an animal, cannot be held responsible for his actions.
  5. Rational thought can only be achieved by hard work, education, and dedication to the geniuses of the past.
  6. Rational thought frees man from irrational instinct; freeing all men from irrational thought will bring about a utopia.
  7. The supernatural does not exist; only the physical exists.

The History and Cultural Context of Neo-Rationalism

Of the original three human worlds, Denjuku had the strongest scientific culture. Once the Shinjurai royal family dominated the planet, they institutionalized that culture via “rationalist” academies. In so doing, the monarch hoped to educate his people and push back the shadows of superstition, so that his people could always reach for the stars.

And reach for the stars they did! The Shinjurai culture spread the second wave of humanity across the stars and took their ruthlessly empirical Rationalism with them and took up a strong position in the galactic core. There, they met ancient alien cultures with their own scientific, mathematical and technological traditions, especially the alien race called “the Traders.” Rationalists cared only about progress, not where that progress came from and so readily embraced aliens and their knowledge into their ranks.

The Shinjurai golden age could not last forever. Like a great tide, the armies of Alexus Rex swept across the galaxy. The rationalist weapons proved powerless against the psionic talents and precognitive strategies of House Alexus. They conquered Denjuku, scattered the Traders and broke the power of the Shinjurai. The mysticism of the Akashic Mysteries eclipsed the science of Rationalism.

However, the Shinjurai still retained some power. The royal family still ruled Denjuku at least in name, and enclaves of the Shinjurai people (such as in Stanis of the Arkhaian Spiral or Xen in the Sylvan Spiral) kept the flickering candle of Rationalism alive, but without unity, the philosophy began to drift and fragment. Shinjurai grievances turned the skepticism of “superstition” into outright hostility. At the same time, the rise of mysticism fed a hunger for “the big questions” that Rationalism had previously ignored and gave rise to the idea “hidden doctrines” that one could find lurking behind the teachings of the old Rationalist sages.

Eventually, the Alexian Dynasty fell and the Akashic Order began to collapse into corruption and Rationalism rose once more in prominence. The Akashic Mysteries offered a closed elitism and incomprehensible puzzles. Rationalism offered an open elitism to anyone who was willing to set aside superstition and learn. It offered answers where the Akashic Mysteries offered only enigmas, and Rationalism advanced technology. But this was not the Rationalism of old. This new Rationalism had uncovered hidden doctrines and had expanded physics with metaphysics. Where Rationalism frowned skeptically at mystical powers, this new Rationalism denounced them as lies. Where Rationalism shrugged its shoulders at ethics or questions of the afterlife, this new Rationalism held explicit beliefs. The carefully anarchic scientific method of Rationalism was dead, replaced with a new, dogmatic Rationalism: Neo-Rationalism.

Neo-Rationalism reached its apex with the rise of the Valorian Empire. The Emperor Ren Valorian vocally endorsed Neo-Raionalism, encouraged its doctrines within his new academies, and expressed a desire to see his Empire run "rationally," with its leadership open to everyone (other than aliens, of course!) willing to cast aside mysticism and take the world as it really was. He discarded tradition and embraced science and technology. He brought the Galaxy into a new era and the Neo-Rationalists would guide the galaxy with the light of scientific enlightenment.

Neo-Rationalism in the Galaxy

Neo-Rationalism is arguably the dominant philosophy of the Galaxy in the modern day, though it only rose recently, lifted up by the Valorian Empire. The Emperor openly praises the ideology, and Neo-Rationalist officials tend to find themselves at more of an advantage for political advancement than adherents to other ideologies do, while some (like the Akashic Mysteries and True Communion) find themselves actively suppressed.

Neo-Rationalism appeals to human and alien alike, and tends to be found most often among the Traders, the Cybernetic Union, on Denjuku and the traditional holdings of the Shinjurai, and dominates the galactic core. While many do not actively subscribe to the ideology, it slowly makes itself into default assumptions in schools and among political leadership, further strengthening its position. It struggles the most in the outer rim of the Galaxy where psychic cults still hold sway, and in the Alliance, where the Akashic Mysteries enjoy a resurgence in popularity.

Neo-Rationalism claims to be a philosophy for everyone, but in practice, its focus on expensive education tends to mean that most Neo-Rationalists tend to be elites. Imperial leadership or Shinjurai Royalty follow Neo-Rationalism. A stripped down variant, Folk-Rationalism, has made its way into the common populace, but by and large, Neo-Rationalism is the ideology of the rulers, not an ideology of the ruled, who tend to see Neo-Rationalists as ivory tower sophists with little real-world experience.

Neo-Rational Schisms

Neo-Rationalism blurs the line between philosophy and faith; on the one hand, its tenets tend to be personally held and two neo-rationalists can disagree on specifics without coming to blows over dogma. However, with Neo-Rationalism's increased dependence on "hidden doctrines" and "secret truths" known to the original Rationalist Masters, as well as the rise of the imperial sanction of certain, specific subsets of Neo-Rationalism, this becomes less and less true.

Broadly speaking, different schools of Neo-Rationalist thought can be broken down into the following categories:

  • Classic Neo-Rationalism: the ideology of Denjuku, the Shinjurai royalty and the galactic core, this is the most common form of Neo-Rationalism.
  • Cyber-Rationalism: this strand of Neo-Rationalist thought takes the notion of the irrationality of humanity to its logical extreme, and assumes that robotic minds are inherently more rational than human minds. This saw its origins in the Arkhaian Spiral, on the world of Stanis and its cybernetic priesthood, but it came to full, domineering fruition as the logic behind the Cybernetic Union's forceful culls of its human subjects and its elevation as robots as a ruling class.
  • Folk-Rationalism: on the edges of galactic civilization, an older form of Neo-Rationalism, closer to its rationalist roots, remains strong. These colonists concern themselves more with survival and "what works" than with who said what a thousand years ago. Found among scavengers and space-wanderers, this tends to be less a concrete school of thought and more of a set of cultural assumptions that often come as a shock for the more ivory-tower Neo-Rationalists who encounter it.
  • Fringe Rationalism: Not every Neo-Rationalism denies the presence and possibility of psychic powers or the supernatural. Some "fringe" theories embrace the possibilities of "hyperdimensional extrusions," "Ego-based fields of vital energy," and other ideas not officially espoused by the original Rationalist Masters, but none-the-less have shown some ability to suppress or control psychic powers. Fringe Rationalism drove the Wyrmwerks corporation's mad science, and tends to be embraced by certain factions within the Valorian Empire, Trader Guildfleets, and fanatical groups of psi-hunters.

The Beliefs of Neo-Rationalism

“The rational mind is unfettered by preconception. It views all things skeptically, but stands ready to be proven wrong.” - Kun-Lun Kaku, the Philosophy of Science

At its very core, Neo-Rationalism is an empirical science. It inherits Rationalism’s demand that all things be proven. One should see it with ones own eyes and have it proven to them before they will believe it. It believes in a materialistic universe, one without “supernatural” influences, one that is rational, deterministic and predictable.

Neo-Rationalism has grown beyond pure empiricism, though. It makes statements about things which cannot be proven, such as theology, metaphysics and ethics. It does this through logical inference and authority. For the first, Neo-Rationalism has a complex and well-studied system of logic that can be represented with complex symbolic equations. When logic is insufficient, Neo-Rationalism implicitly believes in the genius of its founders and in those “sufficiently well-educated” in Neo-Rationalism to infer “deeper truths” in the opinions and statements of those founders, applying Neo-Rationalism’s logical rigor to statements like “God does not play with dice” to create new doctrines. If these new doctrines seem strange or illogical, a good Neo-Rationalist checks the sources, and only if they can be traced to original experts and the logic is being handled by a soundly educated Neo-Rationalist does he accept them.

Neo-Rationalism and Good vs Evil

“Rationalism brings light to the darkness of an irrational universe.” -Avienna Kaku, the Rationalist Canon

Neo-Rationalism dismisses “good vs evil” as a myth developed by animalistic minds who wanted to enslave others. It believes, instead, in rationalism vs irrationalism.
According to Neo-Rationalism, all creatures are irrational. They are great biological machines who react to their environment and their own internal chemical and electrical impulses. Their instincts have been honed by billions of years of evolution to survive, not to understand the world. They react out of emotion, fear, anger, hunger, and they assign superstitious beliefs to things. This unthinking reaction is the source of all ill in the world. The beast rages and, in so doing, ruins his own world. In its hunger, it consumes until the environment his barren. In its anger, it destroys potential allies. In its fear, it flees from that which it does not understand, rather than seeking to learn.

The rational mind, by contrast, is well-ordered and educated. It has foresight and can see what consequences its actions will have on the world around it. It replaces fear with understanding, hunger with careful planning, and rage with dialog. Neo-Rationalism argues that the perfectly rational mind can see a solution out of any problem, even the largest and most complex of problems, which means that the well-ordered mind can create any “good” outcome that one might seek.

Neo-Rationalists advocate a carefully regimented set of ethical rules that individuals should follow. While Neo-Rationalism largely concerns itself with the outcome of actions, rather than the character of the individual that engages in them, Neo-Rationalism advises against all but the most rational from doing whatever they think is best. In most cases, the partially educated mind is not yet ready for completely unfettered ethics. Instead, it’s better to follow the ethical guidelines of Neo-Rationalism; even if wrongly applied, they’re better general rules than other ethical systems. Those ethical guidelines ultimately seek to spread rationalism to as many people as possible. In creating a perfectly rational and ordered world, Neo-Rationalism hopes to eliminate all ills, all disagreement and all conflict.

Neo-Rationalism, the State and War

“What is man, but a biological machine?” -Kun-Lun Kaku, the Mirrors of Consciousness

Neo-Rationalists believes that the wide-scale spread of Neo-Rational ideology is critical to the well-being of all people. It believes, further, that not all people can be, or will be, brought to Neo-Rationalism. Some animal minds are simply too primitive to understand Neo-Rationalism. As such, it hopes to create large organizations, laws and states, that mitigate the harm caused by the irrational few who will never advance beyond their instincts.

In this regard, it attempts to incorporate Neo-Rational ideals into the State. It argues against free-will and thus moral responsibility: to the Neo-Rationalist, the self is just an illusion that a soulless biological machine tells itself to prevent existential dread. It is ruled by its nature and by the events around it. A criminal is not truly responsible for his misdeeds; instead, he’s reacting to years of mistreatment, neglect, difficult circumstances and, likely, a primitive and irrational mind. “Punishment” is only vendetta in the guise of justice. Better, instead, to re-educate the criminal mind so that it becomes rational and sees the error of its way or, if this proves to be impossible, exile it to some place where it cannot harm good and rational society.

Neo-Rationalists disdain war and violence as inelegant, brute solutions. War burns books, rips apart societies and drives men into irrational, survival instincts. A truly rational society would never need war. That said, irrational minds often lash out at rational societies out of fear. A rational state is justified in acting in self-defense, even preemptively if it can accurately predict an inevitable attack. The goal of a rational war should swift victory, the pacification and re-education of the enemy, and minimized casualties. For the neo-rationalist, the best war is the war that’s won before it’s fought.

Neo-Rationalism on Time and Destiny

“Logic is the machinery of a well-ordered mind.” -Tillika, Hyperphysica

Neo-Rationalists believe in a deterministic universe. Every cause has an effect, going back to the big bang, which set everything in motion. Nothing can deviate from its course, and free will is just a story the brain tells itself. If one had perfect access to all data, one could perfectly predict the future. Alas, no human mind has sufficient data, because some systems have so many variables that perfect prediction is impossible. Even the best mind cannot perfectly predict the weather and will practically never be able to do so. The same applies to the “decisions” of the mind, the workings of society, etc. That doesn’t mean, of course, that one can’t have good models that generally predict these things (hence the ethical rules devised by Neo-Rationalism).

Neo-Rationalism on Psionic Powers and Communion

“Psychic phenomenon is nothing less than the disease of the irrational upon an ordered and rational universe. The truly rational could never abide its existence.” -Dawkin Nigh, God-Slayer

Neo-Rationalism denies the existence of the mind as anything but emergent expression of the physical brain. Neo-Rationalism has a strictly materialist view of the universe, and so believes phenomenon like psionic powers and communion do not exist. Those who claim to have those powers are, in the view of Neo-Rationalists, charlatans using some sort of trick, advanced knowledge, or sheer luck, to gain some advantage.

When pressed with physical proof of psionic powers, most Neo-Rationalists will go in one of two directions. Fringe Rationalists will argue that this is merely an interaction between the energies of the individual and the space around him via a means of some as-of-yet undiscovered process (likely something involving quantum mumbo-jumbo). Classical Neo-Rationalists will argue that those powers should not exist and are an unnatural (“irrational”) violation of the rightful laws of the universe. They seek to purge the universe of psionic abilities.

The Neo-Rationalist view on the mind makes them especially open to the idea of robotic independence, as they see robots as fundamentally no different than people (“A biological machine is no different from a cybernetic machine”).

Neo-Rationalism on Death and the Afterlife

“We are stardust. The ashes of exploded stars fill our every cell, the very core of our being. The stars are our heritage and our legacy. We must go to them.” -Tai-Sun Saga, Ad Astra: the Hope of Mankind

Neo-Rationalism holds that death is a complicated breakdown of the biological machine, after which consciousness, as much as it can be said to have ever existed, ceases. Death is the end. No afterlife follows. The only form of legacy a Neo-Rationalist can hope for is that his ideas and knowledge will carry on into the future. The Neo-Rationalis seeks immortality in the form of published treatises.

Neo-Rationalism and other Philosophies

Neo-Rationalism argues that it is open to all “reasonable” philosophies, but in practice it tends to treat all philosophies other than itself or minor variations as deeply misguided at best and outright dangerous at worst. Neo-Rationalism believes that irrational minds lie at the heart of all other philosophies, and ascribes to them sinister motivations (for example, deceiving the gullible masses for personal gain). They like to depict other philosophies as cults with hypocritical leadership.

To the Neo-Rationalist, whether or not one follows Neo-Rationalism is the litmus test of the rational mind. Those who do not, or who argue against it are inherently irrational. As such, dialogue between other philosophies and Neo-Rationalism tends to get off to a rocky start unless adherents to the other philosophy begin by acknowledging the supremacy of Neo-Rationalism.

Neo-Rationalism doesn’t even co-exist well with other philosophies. Rather than “live and let live,” Neo-Rationalism tends to see the “irrational superstition” spread by other philosophies as a threat. They even advocate for pre-emptive action against “irrational” individuals and may see “irrationalism” as a source of crime, and thus may advocate for purging the community of other philosophies. They tend to avoid being brutal about it. They won’t simply gun down those who believe in a different philosophy. Instead, they’ll try to outmaneuver them, defeat them with propaganda and trade sanctions, and then attempt to re-educate or “isolate” them so they can’t spread their “superstition.”

Neo-Rationalist Symoblism and Ceremonies

Neo-Rationalist Scriptures: the Rationalist Classics

The Neo-Rationalist reveres the great minds that founded Rationalism, and holds their works in equal reverence, often quoting from them to drive home a point. Later generations have come along and “clarified” the words of the original Rationalist Masters with commentaries and glosses. Modern Neo-Rational work does not break new ground, it only expands on the original ideas of the original masters. All Neo-Rationalist works exist in digital form, and most Neo-Rationalists have entire libraries on their datapad, but some Neo-Rationalists like the idea of books and have printed copies of the classics on their shelves or their desk, simply so they can hold that wisdom, physically, in their hands (or impress visitors with the virtue and wisdom of their library).

The works of the Rationalists and Neo-Rationalists are too numerous to name, and GMs and Players alike should feel encouraged to come up with their own titles and personages, as well as their own quotes. Some suggestions below:

Rationalist Works

  • Ad Astra: the Hope of Mankind, by Tai-Sun Saga
  • The Mirror of Consciousness, by Kun-Lun Kaku
  • Chaos: A Study of Emergent Systems, by Kun-Lun Kaku
  • Hyperphysica, by Tillika

Neo-Rational Works and Commentaries

  • The Rationalist Canon, by Avienna Kaku
  • God-Slayer, by Dawkins Nigh
  • Purity of the Mind: On Psycho-Social Analytics, by Zeb Lancaster
  • The Machinery of the Mind, by Calvin Del

The Original Rationalist Masters

Tai-Sun Saga, one of the original founders of the Denjuku colony, never lived to see its completion. Neo-Rationalists often consider him one of the greatest of the Neo-Rationalists, and many have holographic recordings of his awe-inspiring speeches in his deep and attractive voice. He had a strong presence, dark skin and a warm smile. He strongly advocated for exploring and colonizing the stars in his work Ad Astra: the Hope of Mankind.

Kun-Lun Kaku, an adviser to the Shinjurai royal family and tireless advocate of Rationalism wrote many works in his long, long life, and is the most quoted of all the Neo-Rationalist classics except for his decendent, Avienna Kaku. He lived to a ripe old age, and his withered visage with long, wild white hair and classic, Shinjurai features grace many Neo-Rationalist holo-sculptures. He wrote, among others, The Mirror of Consciousness and Chaos: a Study of Emergent Systems.

Tillika, a Trader logician and scientist, contributed greatly to the body of Rationalist lore, especially with her classic Hyperphysica which laid the groundwork for the modern hyperdrive, and her complex system of logic, which continues to be practiced in Neo-Rationalism to this day. She had a slender build even for a Trader, never showed her mouth, and her penetrating gaze could pin a fly to the wall.

Neo-Rationalist Commentators

Avienna Kaku is the most prolific and well-known of the Neo-Rational commentators and compiled her life’s work, the massive volume known as the Rational Canon, which is the basis of all modern Neo-Rationalist study. She lived long, like her ancestor, but retained a girlish charm in her features; her most common images show her in her 30s and prefer to show her in a youthfully nerdy light.

Zeb Lancaster still lives, though he has reached his twilight years and still runs the Rationalist Academy on Denjuku. Professor Lancaster is best known for his work in creating the field of Psyco-Social Analytics and his work, Purity of the Mind: Psycho-Social Analytics. The old man has a powerful voice and an upright posture, and his magnetic charm and sparkle-eyed wisdom draw people into a cult of personality that swirls around him, which has caused some scandal when he’s formed deeply personal relationships with some of his students.

Dawkin Nigh still lives and works tirelessly within the Empire to hunt down and destroy the last vestiges of supernatural cults. Some regard him as a bloody-handed executioner, but Neo-Rationalists recognize that he does what he can to save mankind from a dark age of the irrational. He has a single work, a study into the words of the original Rationalists on their hidden truths on the supernatural called God-Slayer. Handsome, grey streaks his brown-gold hair, and his broad shoulders and chiseled features give the impression of a soldier, rather than a scholar.

Neo-Rational Symbolism and Motifs

For Neo-Rationalists, the greatest symbolism of their devotion to rationalism is the image of the Neo-Rationalist masters themselves. Holographic sculptures of bygone sages grace the homes of Neo-Rationalists, a flickering bust on a shelf, or a full image greeting visitors at the entrance. Most Neo-Rationalists have at least one “favorite” Rationalist, but the wealthy like to collect as many images of great Rationalists as they can. Academies typically have a full pantheon of them, and no greater honor can be bestowed upon a Neo-Rationalist than to see their image go up next to those hallowed saints of Rationality.

The works of those sages also carry great weight. Neo-Rationalists often decorate their walls with flat, flexible computer screens dedicated to prominently displaying the text of their favorite Rationalist classic, usually zoomed in on some particularly pithy passage.

While Neo-Rationalists don’t have explicit symbols in the way other philosophies might, they do have motifs that they return again and again, including:
The Star (and other Astronomical Imagery): Neo-Rationalists like the image of the star, especially the four-pointed star with a long tail. They often use it to represent a fascination with astrophysics and an inquisitive nature: the desire to explore the world and to understand all.

  • Math Equations: Nothing says “rational” to a Neo-Rationalist like a series of math equations. The old rationalist used complex mathematics to prove their physical laws, and modern Neo-Rationalists use their own logical calculus to prove their own postulates. Some Neo-Rationalists like to have emblazoned equations as decorations, which often look like cryptic, unfathomable characters to the uninitiated.
  • Robots: Neo-Rationalists like to compare humanity to robots or vice versa and argue that no fundamental difference exists between them (a precept that the Cybernetic Union is quick to use against any Neo-Rationalist opponents!). They like to be accompanied by robots, or use robotic metaphors in discussions of the human psyche.
  • The Color White; Barcodes: Neo-Rationalists like to wear white, or decorate their homes in stark colors. White represents cleanliness and the purity of a rational mind. They also like the high contrast of black symbols or black bars against white, which represents the clear lines in which a rational mind thinks and a contrast to the wild flux of chaotic colors that represents the irrational mind.
  • Misappropriated Religious Imagery: Neo-Rationalism loves to borrow the metaphors of other “irrational” philosophies and repurpose them for their own examples and metaphors. Realistically, these should borrow strongly from the Akashic Mysteries (“The economic crisis facing the Alliance is their true Coming Storm.”) or True Communion (“You could say we follow the path of science!”), but a GM might misappropriate real-world religious imagery so that players easily understand what’s going on.

Neo-Rationalist Ceremonies

Neo-Rationalists tend to be less formal than other philosophies. They lack strict organizations and what passes for Neo-Rationalism tends to change based on what is currently fashionable among the intellectual elite, united only by the Rationalist Canon and its antecedents. Neo-Rationalists do like ways to display their rational piety and to hone their minds, however, and so ceremonial actions do occasionally become popular and widespread. Below is a selection:

Mindful Meditation

The Neo-Rationalist, having not yet completely escaped the bonds of irrational thought, centers herself, usually at the beginning and ending of her day. She takes up a lotus position on a mat and brings one hand before her, and recites a mantra. The mantra is typically a logical formula, perhaps a favorite logical formula that she finds especially beautiful or that proves a principle important to her, or perhaps one she has devised herself to reflect some personal truth. The purpose of this exercise is to clear the Neo-Rationalist’s mind, and to remind her to pause for a moment when taking in stimulus so as to analyze it properly, rather than reacting to new information in a primal way. As such, some Neo-Rationalists will mutter a mantra-fragment under their breath when stressed, to remind themselves to approach the problem rationally.

Psycho-Analytical Mentorship

Zeb Lancaster’s Purifying the Mind synthesizes the ideas about achieving complete rationality and applies a system to it. The Neo-Rationalist seeks a “mentor,” or a “purity guide.” The mentor then arranges sessions with the Neo-Rationalist that resemble a sort of confession. The Mentor asks the Neo-Rationalist questions, starting with simple ones that grow increasingly pointed and personal until the Mentor finds some emotionally charged point and verbally presses on it until the character breaks down. The Mentor and Neo-Rationalist then explore this point, and the Mentor explains to the Neo-Rationalist why the Neo-Rationalist feels this way, explains that it’s okay, but offers a way that the Neo-Rationalist might purify this from his mind. This pairs especially well with Mindful Meditation.

Neo-Rationalist Conclaves

A Neo-Rationalist Conclave is a gathering of all (notable, invited) Neo-Rationalists to a single point to discuss findings, to share works, to have readings and, especially to listen to diatribes and lectures by Neo-Rationalist masters. A conclave can last days and is often a free-wheeling affair where well-heeled Neo-Rationalists rub shoulders with the most admired Neo-Rationalist minds; new philosophers attempt to spread their ideas or sell their works, and avid students might arrange readings of beloved works, or attempt to even touch one of the great masters of Neo-Rationalism.

The Laureate

Should a Neo-Rationalist achieve a great intellectual feat, such as writing a great Neo-Rationalist work, a Neo-Rationalist academy may choose to honor her and add her to their rolls as one of their Laureates. Each Academy does this in a different way, but most generally announce their Laureates once per year (the most prestigious add no more than one per year). In the actual ceremony, three representatives wearing white robes mount a podium and speak to the gathered guests and explain who the laureate is and why her achievement is worthy of addition (often lavishing her with praise, or describing the story of her life in a deific manner). Finally, she is invited to come forward , wearing her white robes, and given some token associated with the academy, and invited to speak. The Laureate ceremony is usually bracketed by feast, party or a convention.

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