Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer

Yesterday I climbed Everest with Hillary. Tomorrow I’m travelling as a passenger on the 1888 Orient Express. Today? I’ve been asked to make a presentation to you all about what we’re doing here at the Human Existence Archive.
My name is Preston Hardy, and I used to be a laboratory assistant under Professor Emelion Jadewycz. One night, purely by chance, he and I started talking about consciousness: what comprised it, where it resided within the human body, and what happened when the body died.
Over a period of seven months, we continued our conversations, working through the various theories and exploring the concept of collective consciousness as it pertained to subjective interpretation and shared understanding.
To our surprise, we both arrived at a startling conclusion at the same time: consciousness does not reside within a body. It is part of a never-ending, undetected plane of existence. We named this hypothetical place the ‘Consciousness Layer’, then set about finding it.
Twenty years later, the results of that intent are shaping the world in ever-greater ways, while the art of exploring the Consciousness Layer itself has been assigned to the fine people at the HEA.
I’ll not bore you with the details, as there are innumerable articles and treatises out there. No doubt reading one or more of them brought you here today. What is important is to understand what you’re about to journey into.
The Consciousness Layer contains the experiences of every single sentience that has ever existed on Earth. While the experiences of each being are complete and discrete, they were subject to the vagaries of memory and injury that affected the being during their time in physical form. Consequently, we have an almost endless library of near-complete information to reference, but only if the specific part we need is accessible, coherent, in a language we can understand, and in a way of thinking we can interface with.
Yes, there are the experiences of non-human sentiences in the Layer. They offer some of the most tantalising imagery in the most incomprehensible manner. We have specialist researchers who have been painstakingly extracting usable information from a single few hours of pre-human existence for years, and are likely to be doing that for a long while to come.
We’ve learned so much, as can be seen from the changes in the world outside. Strangely, we’ve only managed to reinforce the notions of divinity, and again, there is spellbinding imagery of momentous encounters and interventions wrapped up in both human and pre-human experiences.
But, for first-timers like yourselves, we have a curated series of unbelievable experiences for you to chose from. Should you want something different, please ask. However, despite my mention of pre-human experiences, none are available to first-time patrons like yourselves. It takes a long time to be able to handle the shock involved in effectively inhabiting a snippet of memory from something that wasn’t human.
Finally, a word about why we open this place up once a year: we need more permanent researchers, and the ability to cope with the sheer enormity of the Consciousness Layer is rare. You’ll likely leave here awed and elated, but tonight will suffer migraines and nausea. If you don’t, please get in touch. Your post-experience packs will contain details of how to do that.
Now it’s time for you to understand another person in a way nobody has ever done before. To visit them in the only place we truly live: within our minds.
Please follow the attendant with the same colour armband as the entry pass you were given. Thank you.