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The Omniss are a pseudo-religious, philosophical movement espousing peaceful doctrines, the roots of the society dates back until the early 20th century on Terra .
The Omniss movement is especially prevalent among the agrarian worlds of the Outworlds Alliance. During the Reunification War the influence of the movement was at its height, because over 50 percent of the population were their followers. The sect flatly rejects nearly all forms of technology — only technologies directly associated with the preservation of life should be utilized by mankind. The Omniss argue all other forms of technology simply aid the ability for man to fight man. The Omniss missionaries go so far as to disrupt industry and protest development within the Periphery, and have been a factor in the lack of development within the Periphery.
The Omniss movement was founded on the Capellan world of Hsien. Whether the Omniss were founded as a direct result of the anti-war protests of Julius Santiago Avellar, or if the movement simply found a mouthpiece, is unclear. However, the Omniss migrated to the Avellar's home, the Periphery world Alpheratz, and helped to establish the Outworlds Alliance.
In the Succession War era, the Omniss movement ultimately found what they considered a homeworld in the Outworlds Alliance planet of Dante. First settled after the First Succession War by refugees from the Draconis Combine who arrived found a pleasant world ideally suited to growing Terran crops. During the late 2800s the world has been largely demilitarized; the lack of military forces, combined with the large population of pacifistic Omniss members, meant that Dante survived most of the horrors of the Succession Wars with little damage. Influenced by the Omniss, the planetary government actually banned any technology that didn't relate to life sciences or medical care from being imported to the world in 2875. Off-world visitors were required to arrive via a customs landing site and space traffic was only allowed near the system once per month, at which point trade goods and visitors were shipped back and forth. There was no way of enforcing this ban, however; with Dante lacking an HPG due to ComStar being banned from the planet, the government of Dante lacked even a means for complaining about breaches of their regulations.
The Word of Blake took advantage of the location of Dante in the heart of the Outworlds Alliance and the lack of contact with outside systems; in 3062 the Blakists took advantage of agents they had infiltrated into a number of local pirate groups, supplying the pirates with astronavigational charts allowing them to infiltrate onto Dante via uninhabited systems. The pirates then took control of the planet, enslaving the local population and placing their own personnel in all of those positions responsible for contact with visitors. The hands-off attitude taken towards Dante given by President Mitchell Avellar - a consequence of his respect for the Omniss sect and the extension of as much leeway as possible in the interests of freedom of politics and religion - actually assisted the Blakists in seizing the planet. The Blakists kept their control over the planet secret from the inhabitants and the pirates, leaving a number of pirate bands to clash over control of the planet while allowing the pirates to continue launching raids on Alliance worlds from their bases on Dante via uninhabited systems. The Alliance government remained convinced that the pirate raids against Alliance systems were being conducted from groups located in the Periphery, but failed to uncover more than a small number of pirate bases, at testament to the effectiveness of the Blakist deception; the Blakists also used the Dante system as a stepping stone for infiltrating their agents into the Draconis Combine and the Federated Suns.
- There are references to furniture crafted by the "local" Omniss in the short story Old Legends Never Die. This story was originally written to be set on the Outworlds Alliance planet of Milligan's World. Just before the story was published, its setting was changed to Novo Tressida in the Magistracy of Canopus, almost on the opposing side of the Inner Sphere. While the story's epigraph was changed, Milligan's World is still mentioned several times in the text body, referring to the world on which the story is set. The author later expressly clarified this was an editing error, and that the story was indeed set on Novo Tressida.
If taken at face value, the story thus indicates that Omniss live on Novo Tressida; it remains unclear if the references could be read to confirm local Omniss on Milligan's World as well.
- Periphery 1st edition, p. 112
- The Periphery (sourcebook), p. 121, "Dante"
- Field Manual: Periphery, p. 86, "Dante"