It's September 29, 2033, and the Earth and humanity have entered a cathedral of Light 1,000 light-years tall and wide.
One Saturday morning in June 2040 Boston editor Edward Burbage is visited by an enigmatic traveller calling himself Blaise. He's been off the planet for 20 years, helping to orchestrate a unique event called the Theosophon. Now he's here to tell his story and what happened in 2033 when Earth reality changed.
This Blaise-he's clearly a human, age about 90, yet he's not in a human body anymore, at least not a physical one. He claims to have spent much of the last 20 years commuting from his home planet in the Celaeno system in the Pleiades to Earth. Why the Pleiades? Because that's where the prime designers of the Earth reside, and the Theosophon, a kind of galactic musical event, a song-fest of the gods, is the next step in the perfection of this design for consciousness.
The only reason Burbage believes him is that he has had a bit of a wild adventure himself. Copies of his newly published book describing this sit on his coffee table. He's seen this intriguing Blaise a few times in the past, and, in fact, he's edited two of his "posthumous" books. Burbage notes, "It wasn't that Blaise had a mystery to reveal to me; he was the mystery. Everything about him."
As the narration ripens over the next three years, Burbage is astonished to learn he was a key participant in the event even though up until this moment he had no memory of it. Blaise changes all that. The Theosophon, he says, was like a "subtle, slow-motion psychic earthquake rumbling just beyond the border of normal perception, like a band of angels were shaking the Earth. It lasted a day, in terms of peak intensity, but it is still happening years later."