In the final issue of Lucifer (#75), Yahweh mentions forces external to himself.

Yahweh: You cannot be your own maker Samael, none of us can enter image description here

What is the writer intending for Yahweh to convey here?

Though a spinoff from Neil Gaiman's "Sandman", the Lucifer series was written by Mike Carey. He conflicts with the Gaiman-canon in a few places and also worked extensively on Hellblazer around the same time. Perhaps an in-story explanation of "you know what they are" can be found in the greater DC canon, the Sandman canon alone, or perhaps Carey is just making a point about self-determination?

  • 1
    Note that this Lucifer issue breaks the fourth wall in a way very similar to the finale of Alan Moore's Promethea.
    – Abulafia
    Commented Jun 27, 2015 at 20:37
  • I would risk the answer that its The Presence, but its bit unclear is it a force above God or just one of its form. Otherwise I'd agree with @Abulafia and say that its the 4th wall reference
    – Yasskier
    Commented Feb 1, 2016 at 2:13

2 Answers 2


Given the nature of the Sandman comics it could be interpreted in two ways, both can be equally valid.

The First Perspective

  • Given the nature of the Sandman comics, we are often spoken to by characters in the series through the Fourth Wall; where beings such as Lucifer or the Presence speak to the readers as well as the characters in the story. These characters exist on more than one layer of reality and can sense entities who exist in more than one space at a time.

  • Given the Presence's nature, it is within its ability to be aware of the existence of forces or even realms beyond itself; in this case the Presence is aware of being a construct (a narrative entity) created by a being in a Higher Order or Layer of Reality: the comic writer/creator who breathes life into his creation.

  • This does not invalidate the Presence, for within the narrative universe of the Sandman Saga, he is indeed the primary force believed to be the creating energy of their particular universe. Given Lucifer's creation of his own reality, he is likely also aware of the Higher Orders of Reality even if his pride will not let him accept it or acknowledge it.

The Second Perspective:

  • The Presence is the penultimate being in the DC Multiverse, it is both aware of itself and yet recognizes even it can be affected by the only thing greater than itself; the minds of the entirety of reality in agreement could alter reality and itself. The change would not stop the Presence from being itself, only that it would change according to the only force greater than itself.

  • This is hinted at by Mike Carey when he suggests the answer lies in the story "The Dreams of A Thousand Cats." In this tale, it is revealed that once upon a time, Cats ruled the Universe. Cats larger than men, who chased and feasted upon Humans and rule the world being served by Humans.

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  • It was only when a Human who grew weary of Humanity being feasted upon by Cats, shouted to his fellows that they could change reality if they Dreamed of a world where Humans ruled the world INSTEAD OF CATS. He would require everyone to believe this was possible and to put the entirety of their being behind it.

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  • And one day, it was so. They didn't just replace Cats as the rulers of the world, Cats had never been so. Reality had been altered by the will of Humans until the previous Universe had never been.

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Is the Dream of Cats lying? Who can say but the consensus was, the Dreaming Cat who sought retribution and change for the loss of her kittens was driven to convince cats everywhere they could have the reality they lost back, if they believed.

But as one old Tom, relayed to a kitten he brought to the storytelling, who could convince a thousand cats to do anything...

If this tale is NOT merely an allegory, then the Presence is implying the Universe is ultimately mallable by a will greater than His. The power of the dreams of a determined group...

  • 3
    The ability to use one thousand dreamers to alter all reality was confirmed in the Sandman Overture. I won't say more because it would be a massive spoiler, but it's awesome. Whether this can override the presence, I have no idea... But Dream has been shown to defer to Its will, so I doubt it.
    – user867
    Commented Feb 1, 2016 at 4:49
  • I took the liberty of replacing your images with higher-resolution versions from volume 3 (Dream Country) of trade paperbacks. The colouring is significantly different, so I'll take no offense if you want a rollback. Commented Jan 30, 2017 at 14:51
  • 2
    No. It's funny that you did it. I had just gathered together all my books, scanned the pages and was coming to replace them because the page had shown up recently and I had put them together in a bit of a hurry. So, no. I don't have a problem at all. Great minds think alike, I say. Thank you. Commented Jan 30, 2017 at 23:39
  • Glad to help! These are actually form the digital editions, thus the quality. Commented Feb 19, 2017 at 15:25

Mike Carey has answered this question on his Twitter, if you accept that as a valid source:

@aterial_dawn Ie the minds of sentient beings across the universe. We make our gods for ourselves, in our own image.

— M. R. Carey (@michaelcarey191) December 10, 2015

He also responded to this question again on January 6, 2016 saying:

"I had in mind the beliefs and imaginations of humankind. See "Dream Of a Thousand Cats" in Sandman..."

  • 1
    This site doesn't support embedded tweets; you should take a look at the Markdown help for more information on the formatting we do support Commented Feb 1, 2016 at 2:47

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