The Universal Laws

The Universal Laws
To understand a Tech-priest's mind is to understand an intellect that has been manufactured and processed to work as smoothly and seamlessly as a cogitator. The purpose of his being is encapsulated in the tenets of the Adeptus Mechanicus, his goals and purposes laid out by prior generations of techpriests attempting to map out the perfect path to enlightenment. Many of these concepts are embodied in what are called the "Universal Laws," a set of holy commandments passed down through the centuries. Whether sixteen Universal Laws truly exist as it is thought, and whether all forge worlds would fully agree upon them, is a subject of fierce debate, but most of the Universal Laws have been enshrined and widely proclaimed as the core principles of the Creed Mechanicus.

The Mysteries of the Cult Mechanicus

First Universal Law
"Life is directed motion"

Second Universal Law
"The spirits is the spark of life"

Third Universal Law
"Sentience is the ability to learn the value of knowledge"

Fourth Universal Law
"Intellect is the Understanding of Knowledge"
The Fourth Law is most commonly interpreted as stating that the ability to comprehend and utilize knowledge is the basis for the measurement of Intellect. it is entirely possible for any sentience to realize the value of Knowledge (or Stimulus, as some members of the Cult Mechanicus might refer to it) while only possessing simplistic levels of it. It is also possible for an Archive or Holomat to contain vast quantities of knowledge and the understanding thereof, without apprehending the value of that Knowledge. Neither of these two examples would possess true Intellect in the eyes of a techpriest.

Fifth Universal Law
"Sentience is the basest form of Intellect"
The so-called Fifth Law is often seen as being closely related to the Fourth Law. Techpriests often view Sentience as a commonly held trait, and they see it as only the first tier of Intellect, the lowest rung on the ladder of Comprehension. Superior Intellect is generally agreed to be developed through the acquisition and understanding of Knowledge.

Sixth Universal Law
"Understanding is the True Path to Comprehension"
The concept of Comprehension holds special significance for techpriests. It is often viewed as a state of transcendence, a level of Intellect that encompasses all possible Knowledge.

Seventh Universal Law
"Comprehension is the Key to all things"
The Seventh Law is widely seen as relating to the Sixth. Debate rages about whether "the Key to all things" is a literal or figurative expression. Many believe that the Seventh Law means that Comprehension of the forces of the universe brings with it the keys to reality, the ability to implement any change or creation desired.

Eighth Universal Law
"The Omnissiah knows all, comprehends all"
The Eighth Law enshrines the Omnissiah as the supreme being, the entity able to comprehend all Knowledge in the universe.

The Warnings of the Cult Mechanicus

Ninth Universal Law
"The alien mechanism is a perversion of the True Path"

Tenth Universal Lawbold text
"The soul is the conscience of sentience"

Eleventh Universal Lawbold text
"A soul can be bestowed only by the Omnissiah

Twelfth Universal Law
"The Soulless sentience is the enemy of all"

Thirteenth Universal Law
"The knowledge of the ancients stands beyond question

Fourteenth Universal Law
The Machine Spirit guards the knowledge of the Ancients"

Fifteenth Universal Law
"Flesh is fallible, but Ritual honors the Machine Spirit"
To a techpriest, organic components (like people) are weak, forgetful, and ultimately expendable for the greater glories of the Machine God. Only the correctly prescribed rituals can purify the fallibilities of the flesh, and enable the enlightened to interact with a machine-spirit. It would be a grave crime for a techpriest to dishonor a machine-spirit by not enacting the proper rituals in its presence.

Sixteenth Universal Law
To break with Ritual is to break with Faith"
As imperfect, organic beings, most techpriests believe that they must rely on Ritual over Understanding. Every screw-turn and button-press is precisely documented for every mechanism they build or use. There is a strong belief that the slightest deviation from ritual is an invitation to disaster and will lead to the unleashing of uncontrollable forces. In matters such as plasma reactor maintenance rituals, this has been demonstrably true.

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