Negentropism is an ethical philosophy, while not quite a religion it has the overtones of one. One aspect of this is the wide variety of schisms and reinterpretations that exist.
The basic view is that entropy is the fundamental flaw of the universe, and ethical actions serve to slow or stop the increase of entropy. The decay from lower to higher entropic states corresponds to the historical decay from a golden age into the present iron age that can be found in many cultural myths.
The Five Axioms of Negentropism are:
1. Entropy is the foe.
2. Information must be preserved.
3. Life must be preserved.
4. Energy must be preserved.
5. Order must be preserved.
Axiom one is the fundamental axiom, from which the others follow (strictly speaking they are thus not axioms but the term is traditional). Entropy is applied to all systems in the universe, be they physical, information or spiritual, and the goal is to prevent its spread.
Axiom two deals with psychology, information and knowledge. It is the basis for the many backup and library projects of Negentropists, as well as the mental disciplines such as remembrance, reversible logic and attention training commonly taught among them.
Axiom three encompasses both the traditional ethical maxim of not killing, and the ecosophical views of the sanctity of biospheres. As a result, several Negentropic influenced worlds do not execute severe criminals but place them in indefinite cryonic suspension. The ecological views closely mirror views expressed by Preservationists, although many Negentropists are more favorable towards terraforming (being the expansion of anti-entropic life into the more entropic physical world). It should be noted that many interpret the axioms as being ranked, and as axiom one and two are more important than axiom three this justifies their mission of biosphere conversion, reaching a directly opposed conclusion. In mainstream Negentropism this view is regarded as incorrect; only axiom one is more important than the other five axioms.
Axiom four deals with technology and infrastructure. It is the basis for various energy-saving and recycling Negentropist projects. It is also sometimes interpreted psychologically as a restriction on unnecessary or loose thinking, although this is not an official interpretation and formally psychology falls under axiom two.
Axiom five deals with the social order. It implies the need for a stable, efficient social structure that can oppose entropy and help its citizens and physical structure to fulfill the Negentropic ethics. Especially the legal system is viewed as the skeleton giving society its logical structure and hence of vital importance
From these axioms the Precepts of Negentropy follows; each Precept is formulated as a logic deduction from the axioms and previous Precepts. The original Precepts, consisting of the deductions and commentaries, were originally published by the Research Brotherhood of Omegarete. Expanded versions have appeared at regular intervals.
Negentropism as a practical philosophy is largely based on making deductions of correct action from the totality of the Five Axioms and the Precepts. To aid in this many institutions such as the Negentropic Alliance Advisory Process have been formed, as well as a large number of popular ethical handbooks such as the Delta H Zero, Ethical Tables and Princess Wo-Hanson's Interactive Advisory.
The goal is eternity, a state of perfect balance and order where entropy does not increase and time no longer applies. While many interpret this as a physical goal, the influential Yttrium Shield School regarded it as a spiritual goal, claiming that as eternity is reached in the soul - if only for a moment of external time - then perfection has been achieved. Since eternity is timeless it does not matter how long it appears to last for outside observers, and physical entropy increase is largely irrelevant. This synthesis with the Zarathustran philosophy has been a long-standing issue of philosophical debate among Negentropists. Seven hundred years ago this led to the Forn Process, where the Negentropic Council decreed that while the spiritual interpretation of Negentropism was not wrong in itself, allowing physical entropy to increase (as well as the acts of personal entropy that were allowed after the eternity-moment by the Hydri Heretics) could not be accepted. This judgement led to purges.
Omegist syntheses with Negentropism imply the possibility of overcoming entropy by achieving an Omega Point. At this point Negentropy would become totally dominant and eternity achievable. Other omegist syntheses discuss various ways of overcoming the "entropy trap". This is an area of eschatological and applied theological study well developed at Negentropy Alliance universities and research networks.
The Order of Apologists are a deliberate attempt to reformulate Negentropy into the language of all other religions or compatible philosophical systems. These reformulations have been highly successful in recruiting individuals and small populations to Negentropy. Apologist missionaries can be found throughout inhabited space.
Comments on the First Axiom
The First 'Axiom' of Negentropy might give outsiders the impression that this religious/philosophical movement believes it can produce reverse or Negative Entropy…
This is certainly not the case.
Although the visible universe is not a closed system for entropic purposes this in fact makes the task of the Negentropist harder, as energy in the form of photons constantly leaks out of the system into the expansion of the universe, never to be seen again. To negate entropy, that is to slow down the increase in disorder,and maximise the amount of order available for the use of intelligent entities the Negentropist must attempt to slow down this constant leaching of energy over the black event horizon of the sky. This course of action was first detailed by Freeman Dyson in his well known Dyson deep future scenario. The disorder of the visible universe will still increase over time to a maximum, but far more slowly because all available energy and information is conserved, while reversible computation defines the intelligent mind-children of the faithful, until all the stars have evaporated and protons decay one by one.
On the other hand, several extreme Omegist sects have set their goal to be true negative entropy…
Iliat Neme, Negentropism: A General Overview, Quana Virtuals, Unmoon II
The Basic Commentaries of the Precepts 103rd edition., Geburah Philosophical, Geburah Prime, (10232)
Wi-Ban As III ed., An Apologist's Guide to Negentropism 76th edition, Alliance Mission Press, Alexandria III.
Rety Wainewicz and Umberto Menke, Atlas of Negentropic History, Kelkan Media, Ken Ferjik.
Benefit: Negentropists get the profession Philosophy at rank 3 for free and can improve it as a regular profession.
Core Value: Negentropism — The basic view is that entropy is the fundamental flaw of the universe, and ethical actions serve to slow or stop the increase of entropy. With this the Negentropists use it for bonuses to help overcome entropy, or at least stop the decline and decay of things.
Philosophers know their arguments and assumptions (and those of others as well). They can communicate effectively to large groups, and know how to appeal to others (to recruit new members, get a book deal or a paid interview) . They are familiar with memetic techniques and know how to recognize them. They are also familiar with picking apart and formulating logical arguments.
The memetic aspects of this Profession, argument and deeper aspects of a philosophy, are considered specialized tasks.