Religion motivates nearly all policies in the theocratic Krill society, so the Anhkana plays a central role behind their world's relations with the Planetary Union.
The central moral thesis of the book appears to be that the Krill alone possess souls and thus are superior to every other species in the universe, which is why the majority of Krill do not see killing other species as objectionable. According to the Anhkana, Avis, its supreme deity, touched only the Krill "with his divine hand," gifting them with souls and the right to claim all the resources of the universe. The Anhkana exhorts the Krill to wage a "Great Crusade" against all other species, to eradicate or to subjugate them. The text unites the Krill together as equals, that all Krill are "brothers" in the crusade against civilizations seen as lesser or unworthy of life.
One line of the Anhkana is preserved in the words of Teleya, a school teacher aboard the Yakar, who quotes: "Judge not a stranger by his sheath, but by his sword." The phrase is interpreted by the Krill to mean that other species can show the characteristics of sentience without bearing a soul.
Though the majority of its contents are unknown to the Planetary Union, they have learned over the years about Avis and the Anhkana is meant to document stories about him and his philosophies. The late High Priest Sazeron says that the book is holy and contains wisdom to comfort in times of grief.
The Anhkana teaches of an afterlife that extends onward for eternity. Those Krill who die are said to to be "at peace in the arms of Avis," implying that the souls of departed Krill dwell with their deity.
The Anhkana serves as a Rosetta stone to decipher Krillain writings found throughout Krill ships. However, since decipherment, the written contents of the Anhkana have been shown to contain no information about Krill religion or society. Two pages of the text are shown in a scene where Chris and Devon actively copy the text in the chapel of the Yakar. They are the symbols for the number 0 through 9 in random order. Later, a passage of the Anhkana is displayed on the screen inside Chris and Devon's quarters, which is the symbols for 0 through 9, the letters of the Krillain alphabet, and several undeciphered symbols believed to be punctuation notation, repeating.
- Captain Ed Mercer calls the Anhkana gruesome, similar to a Bret Easton Ellis novel.
- Ed calls it gruesome as he reads a passage from the Anhkana on a digital display. However, all that is on the display are the letters of the Krillain alphabet and the numbers 0 through 9.
- ↑ High Priest Sazeron calls it this. Episode 1x06: Krill