"'...the Others would not let us do much more, the Maiden said, sadness in her voice. 'What we did...was something so terrible that only a greater terror made it possible to think it.'
"The Mother nodded. 'All we could do while Mind was divided...was take this island out of its year, so that it could then reach across the spiral and make the Change. The Change gives you time, no more, as the island was given time. Time to learn, so that when you regain the powers taken from you they'll be used properly.'"
-SM Stirling, The Sword Of The Lady (New York, 2010), Chapter Twenty-One, p. 652.
There is more about the Others and the Sword but this passage answers one of my main questions: who caused the Change and why? These gods are not omnipotent. If they were, then they would not have had to use such terrible means.
The other main question was: how are the universes connected?
"'And now there is a God...'" (p. 649) -
- clearly means that "God" has come into existence and thus is not "God" in the Christian sense.
OK, rereading pp. 647-649, there is a light at the beginning of each universe but that light is the monobloc of that universe whereas the light that survives one universe and passes into another universe is Mind? Two meanings of "light"?