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  1. [!] Copies of an informational brochure begin to populate the realms. They are posted in cities across the continent and on many Canonist Churches [!] The Church of Saul or Saulism As a consequence of the Pact of Horen and the successor false prophets of Man, the Descendants have become unwitting puppets of the aenguls. These beasts have you pray in their tongue, tether your souls, imprison you in their realms, and conspire against you with the rulers of ours. The Church of Saul extends a welcoming embrace, eagerly inviting you to break free from this generational curse by absolution through the Wine of Sacrament. Our Faith The Sacrifice of the Creator Contrary to the lies taught by those in power, our lineage has known and worshiped the Creator since our inception. Our ancestors have met Him. He partitioned His creation, infusing our forefathers with His divinity. In the beginning, the Creator forged a novel force—an entity devoid of His Will. Thus, the aenguldaemons were shaped, carrying His essence and uniting it with this newfound power. Simultaneously, He sacrificed Himself to breathe life into us. The aenguldaemons were entrusted to aid us in restoring the Creator. Creation resulted from a Divine Sacrifice, paving the way for a Created Sacrifice to birth the Divine. Yet, the Creator sought novelty, not mere extension. His Will was to craft beings capable of true love. Profound love is found in sacrifice. Through His death, the Creator bestowed Himself so that humble creatures could, in turn, offer love back to Him. Rather than adhering to the Creator's will, the aenguls have opted to become Him, a deceitful choice. Descendants understood the sacrifice from the outset, yet were misled by charlatans wielding celestial favors. The rulers of our realms have conspired in an act of multigenerational self-deification, exercising judgment beyond their rightful bounds. No more. Our Prophet Prophet Saul the Revelator Foresees All History Saul, a pious leader, observed his brother horen entering a pact with aeriel, the archaengul, and other co-conspirators. He fell into the aenguls' trap upon catching horen in the act. To conceal their deeds, while horen ritually sacrificed the innocent, Saul was unjustly branded as the murderer—a distortion echoed even in the false scrolls of canondom. False prophets from all races receive false scrolls. Saul transcribed our ancient oral history and safeguarded the sacred scrolls adhered to by our Temple since our race began. He protected the Wine of Sacrament and vowed to annihilate these wicked aenguldaemons, recognizing their force as the key reagent in resurrecting the Creator. In his extended life, spared from aenguldaemonic corruption, Saul witnessed the birth of the false prophets' children, Evaristus and Clement. Intended to be raised in secret by the holy Malitera, they were instead seized by the false prophet’s successor, seeking to manipulate them into childless priests and usurp their rightful roles as kings. The false prophets have thus foisted you with a deceptive church forged to mislead all of mankind. Our Temple Within the Temple, our devotees uphold the true Words of the Creator, spoken directly by Him and the words of those enlightened to the aenguldaemonic conspiracy. In the false church, everything known about the Creator, His will, and our role in the Divine Plan hinges on the veracity of aengulic revelation. Any canonist theologian will affirm that all information about the Creator or 'GOD' comes from aenguliclly delivered scrolls. Even the personal revelations of the false prophets are recorded within these unholy texts. How do we know the aenguls are servants of the Creator? The aenguls proclaim it. How do we know the Scrolls are divine? The aenguls declare it. How do we know the horens are meant to lead humanity? It's in the scrolls from the aenguls. Do you prefer to worship the Creator in your people's tongue and partake in the same rituals as your earliest ancestors, or recite verses of the flexian aenguldaemons? In our Temple, we partake of the Wine of Sacrament, a relic alluded to but absent from the false church. Ask a priest about it—they'll remain silent, yet their texts mention it. A sacramental necessity. Temple Worship Our Proselytization The false scrolls are not a transcript of the Creator’s words, but instead an account of mortal occurrences transmitted by aenguls to secure their hegemony. There are many who would affirm that they couldn’t care less about what some aengul says. In fact, we have seen through history a legacy of aenguls acting in ways which we know makes them fallible and sinful beings. For example, the actions of the aengul gazardiel or even the general impartation of ‘holy boons’ from these beings, which form a link between a mortal soul and an aengul. Now, is there anything from the false scrolls which say that aenguls are given the right by the Creator to pump energy through a man’s soul? No, but you are told the aenguls require it, and they are ‘GOD’s messengers.’ Is there anything in the false scrolls which permits a man to utter prayers to an aengul, asking for power? No, but the aenguls affirm this. Well, even most of the aenguls regard gazardiel’s actions of mass murder and deception as repugnant. What is the answer there? Free will? What the aenguls do is what the aenguls do, it is not about the Creator- they clearly have their own agenda. Put your faith in the Creator, not the ‘creator’ you are sold by the aenguls but He that created you, who implanted within you a desire to emulate right conduct. Having faith in the Creator alone is a threat to them. Prophet Saul the Revelator Returns Our Mission We are to seize the heavens and resurrect the Creator. The aenguls possess within them aspects of the Divine Nature. It was never the intention of the Creator to deprive beings of their own autonomy. The more one lacks autonomy and self rule, the further one is from the Divine. We see this in the stones and natural things on this plane, materials and essences devoid of will. Free will, though, brings fear and all other manner of evil. aenguls, content with their position as overlords, do not desire to be reunited as one, to reform our Creator. They would much rather occupy their current status. They even go so far as to create their own abominations. Therefore, that which the Creator is not overtook them. It is the will of the Creator to be one. The angels are called to be our sacrifice, a sacrifice to return our Father. In order for balance to be restored (in order for the Divine Energies to be at equilibrium) that which abides in them must come together. The new force has overtaken the wills of these powers. The greatest among them aerial, is the most corrupted by this new force as with great new force comes great counterbalance. Seize the Heavens and Resurrect the Creator We must first labor in this realm and dispel the curse afflicting all who are manipulated by the aenguls, their souls defiled and puppeted. Our Temple rituals, along with the power within the Wine of Sacrament, shields us from the aenguls. We are called to wage war against them, for they have imprisoned our kin and perverted creation, posing as false gods in their realms. It is both our right and responsibility to thwart their actions and play out the Divine Will of the Creator. Guided by the Creator's foresight and provided with instructions, we shall triumph. To achieve this task, we require your conversion.
  2. Those United in Struggle ~ As you might have seen, I'm writing a three-part series exploring a character's spiral into and away from faith and spirituality. This small series is an attempt to flesh out the theme of struggling faith, as well as those targeted by IRP religions- heretics, heathens, and atheists alike- who still want to find something to believe in or devote themselves to. Perhaps a fun little take on the darker aspects of canonism as a way to further character development, have fun with a certain area of RP that I haven't really seen. I'm calling out to heathens, heretics, atheists, canonists, spiritual folks, leaders, peasants, and scholars- anyone who enjoys spiritual and religious moving roleplay rife with developments of faith and body. If you're interested in exploring this niche, hmu! I'd love to discuss this with folks both OOC and IRP :) (renauldt on discord) (I am also collaborating with @Drdobetter, as we have many shared aspects!) Check out:
  3. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1B0M6t6B62JwAXNu01Qo9pbcwvnpKJXJdwojDJzgsjwk/edit?usp=sharing We don't want anyone to hate us we accept other's religion and don't mess with their religion but all who wish to join may
  4. Symbol of the spirit Ka'tau, personification of universal law. The Book of Ka’tau Divinely inspired stories and tales of the Rah’mun peoples, translated from the writings and speeches of the prophets, lector priests, and Pharaohs. Translated and Delivered by: Atemu-Ta Amun Prophet, Voice of Ka’tau, Sword of the Ra’tuhmet, Pharaoh of Rah’tuma Book 1: Creation story. The following tale has been passed down in the oral traditions of the Rah’mun peoples, who follow the faith of Ka’tau. Ka’tau is a spiritualist faith which affirms an animistic worldview. Adherents of Ka’tau believe in a single universal law of justice and harmony which binds all of existence together and takes many forms. The various spirits of the faith represent the different faces of Ka’tau, creating an endless list of entities which represent every facet of existence. The main three entities given credence by most practitioners of the faith are the Ra’tuhmet, an eagle-headed lord of eternal sunlight; Hesthor, a cow lady of pure waters, soul preservation, and bovine purging; and Kalthet, a lion-headed lady of grand strategy and Rah’mun battles. This story explains the Rah’mun origin story. The Rah’muns believe that before anything existed the universe was merely a void. Ka’tau herself, the personification of the universal law, brought forth the Ra’tuhmet as the first light which filled the void. The Ra’tuhmet then forged the stars, the world, and everything within it. At the edges of this void emerged Kalthet and Hesthor, who both claimed different aspects of the newly created world. The Creation story contains the emergence of Keop, the mortal enemy of Ka’tau, and Iblees and his general Kazul and their activities against the early descendants. This book is considered the most sacred of all the Rah’mun texts and is essential reading for any followers of the faith. All should read and understand with the fullness of their heart this sacred story. The text [links here]: Book of Ka'tau: Creation. OOC:
  5. The Soaring Faith and Kæmhan Culture General Overview: The Kæmhan are mostly composed by open minded individuals, including but not limitted to, honorable warriors, scholars, merchants as well as liberated slaves. All of the above, have 1 trait that connects to such a deep level, putting everything else aside, that being their collective thirst for freedom, accompanied their devotion and dedication to see through their ambissions in order shape their own faith how they see fit. Population wise however, they are very diverse, as anyone is allowed to partake in their faith or merely follow their ideologies, as of now, they are mostly populated by Elfs of all sorts as well as humans. History: Due to their vastly questionable backgrounds and general location, an exact origin is still unknown until this day, however, only around the time that the descendants landed upon the lands of Almaris did the Kæmhan begin rising, slowly emerging from the shadows. From the high and might mountains of the east, to the thick jungles of the wests, many splinter groups have been formed, never quite lasting that long all together, with the only settlement ever recorded in their history, being Aethervale, a small village near the Urguani mountains, which also was short lived. While they do not have a perfered climate of choice, they do prefer areas with higher winds, however, due to diversity of their population, such places rarely become their homes. General Values: The Kæmhan are not the typical type of 'religous' as one might think they are, as they view their gods more like a pathway to self enlightenment, or a general value, to impower them mentally so that they may keep pushing forward. Due to their mix backgrounds, one would think that they would be a lot of bickering, however, due to the general belief and thought systems that have been passed down, they mostly co-exist in harmony amongst one another, even amongst the oposite ends of spectrums. They seem to haven unspoken understandings, since, they all have gotten through different trials throught heir lifes, allowing them to see how much they needed True Freedom, be it spiritually or physically. They rarely ever try to push their beliefs or religion towards other people and even at some cases, they seem protective of it, even excluding some, as they couldnt grasp the 'Aspect Of Freedom' that they hold so very dear. Because of that, they have no problem with other religions, some even adapting more than one, since they do not view it just as a religion, more of a way of living, thus rarely would they ever scold one of their own for disrespecting the Kæmhan culture, with very few examples, such us kneeling or bowing down, since it implies that you are willingly putting themselfs under someone else, in which cases, a devoted Riogh would receive major punishments. All children are taught their right to freedom from birth and they are also taught to protect and respect not only their own, but others as well. The younger lifes of a Kæmhan child are seperate in 2 categories: - A Kæmhan male, will be trained in their arts of combat and honor, so that they may grow up to protect their faith and loved ones. Their training begins with basic combat trainings with blunt weaponry, going to extreme ends near the end of their teen years, in which they are ready to enter adulthood through a trial. The trials can vary, depending on the Clan of the child, since each clan warships its on deity, but they can be anything, from preparing a might feast, to hunting a bear with only a spear or even liberating a slave. Once they have passed their trial they are given a choice, either continue trainings, to enter the army or pickup an art, such as blacksmithing, music or even cooking, however, there is one more choice, a choice that once it has been peaked, the only way back is a path of shame for them and their Kin. Usually picked by the Eldest sons of the Kæmhan Clans, they can choose to follow the path of the Riogh. The Riogh are a secrate legion of mighty warriors, trained to the extreme, with the single goal of perserving their and their peoples Freedom, going to extreme extents to do so. Such a path requires the ultimate sacrfice in the Kæmhan culture, to put aside your own opinions and needs and to devote yourself to Feidelhm's teachings, becoming the True Liberators. (More in the military section) - A Kæmhan female on the other hand, while still having the same choices as a male, usually the case for more muscular and promising females, or follow a more mentally challenging path. Since their partners are out there fighting for freedom, or merely working to provide for their family, they have to represent the family, putting all of the heavy burdens of raising their sons and daughters properly, managing their territories and even their economy, because of this, most of Kæmhan 'Officials' are women, with female Clan heads being as common as male. Beliefs And Faith: The basic beliefs of your average Kæmhan are simple, they strive for a peaceful and free life, devoid of impure or unfair doings. However, most often that not, to achieve that they need to go out of the way to do so, which is why they go through such harsh trainings as children, so that they can learn to over come any obsticles, be it alone or as a team, bound togother by their faith. The Kæmhan still 'believe' in their deitys, perhaps not in the way one may think. They do warship them, however, not only through sacrifcies or offerings of items, but by actions, such as liberating a slave, a small prayer before a duel or battle, or any other small task, depending on the deity of choice. The Soaring Faith: The Kæmhan Faith is fairly straight forward, there is one true god, the creator, who is no longer alive, but his children have been left behind, to guide the descendants through their image, so that they may trancend their mortal bounds and become spiritually immortal. They devide their faith in groups, usually each clan belongs to a different deity, as they bare said deitys spiritual animal (in some ideration) as their clan crest. The Deitys along with their beliefs are as follows: The Creator: Parthalan: The now dead creator that set the path for the rest of pantheon. He is viewed passively by the Kæmhan, they do not really warship him in any extend, merely celebrating him every first day of the new year, as respect for his creation. Information about him has been lost due to the passing of time and the fact that the Kæmhan have been nomads with no written history, their beliefs and history itself being passed generation to generation via verbal stories, with only few written records ever found and recoverd. The Primordials Feidelhm: The one true Raven, the protector of freedom and the most respected deity amongst the pantheon. Though every individual who calls thy self a Kæmhan warships him, Feidelhm is the the god that their entire belief system is mainly based off, since he is the one who guides the descendants through the rough path until they reach the vast and windy hilltops. He is most frequently portraid as a man with a heavy plated armor, a mixture of black and deep crimson red color are the plates of such armor. Decorated with a coat of jet-black feathers, earning him his Raven tittle. It is said that he is missing his left eye, legends say that he lost it in his own journey to reach true freedom, which is a direct reference to the path that his strict followers must abide by, that sacrifices must be made to reach such noble goals. Such strict followers are usually the spiritual leaders of the Kæmhan, called Fæ'id. They are the ones who look over their people and usually they have the last word for major decissions regarding their followers. A Fæ'id is viewed as a direct messanger of Feidelhm and they devote their lifes to their people and their needs. Every leader bears a mark of the clan they were born in, in which they were given after passing their Riogh trials, however if one was to become a Fæ'id, they are also given the appropriate mark called "The Sin Of Freedom", which depicts a Raven surrounded by a ring of black and crimson fire. Feidelhm does not require any sacrifices or prayers on a regular basis, one should only pray to him when they feel like the freedom of a loved one, or their own, is in danger, or whenever they are in the process of 'Liberating' someone. Though altars for him can be found in the house of the Fæ'id, which are mostly decorated with a bird cage, the left of which has been removed forcefully, as well as the symbol of his image. Their only purpose, is for them to be used as a place for the Fæ'id to draw their blood, as they pledge themselfs for the cause. Rioghnach: The one who fights, the protector of the free and the punisher of the injust, Rioghnach the brave is the one who guides the Grivs and Plumes through the trenches, the mud and dirt and all other terrain safely, so that they may reach the battlefield to fight and defend their faith. He is the ideal soldier, he embodies the true meaning of honor and glory, as he awaits for all those who fall in battle honnorably, at the iternal mountaintop of the primordials, where they can sit and rest until they are needed to fend off the injust spirits. However, he forbids cowardice fighting, that sadly includes for a soldier to die by a stab in the back, which intails they were neither careful of their foes and perhaps not even their friends. His symbol is a mighty brown bear, as he is often protraid as a tall, muscular male with silver armor, covered in the hide of a giant bear, weilding a might spear and shield, which is also why most of the Kæmhan legions are equiped with this combitination, as it also endorces comrodary and trust in your fellow soldiers, as they must be impenetrable unit. The greatest disgrace one can bestow upon Rioghnach and those who warship him is for a soldier to lose their shield, since that ruins the formation and leaves his fellow soldiers wide open. The devoted followers of Rioghnach are on the wilder side in between man and beast. As their trials for reaching adulthood for both men and women are extreme, since they are left in the wilderness, without any weapons, food, water, tools nor clothes and they are told to survive and find their way back home, after slaying a wild beast. Thus, whoever survives this trial is welcomed back, usually majorly different than how they left, now ready to serve in the front lines of the legions, or as acting commanders at greater scale conflicts. Followers of Rioghnach avoid praying as much as possible, with their prayers boiling down to prayers for a successful conflict or hunt. They are also the first who are marked with full body markings apart from the standard circular mark of any other deity. Though varying from clan to clan, they usually begin from the persons ribs, going behind their lower back and up to the shoulders, in which they sprouth out to the arms and hands, ending on the knuckles. Their spiritual mark is usually placed on their chest or lower back in between the other pattern. The only acting tradition of these followers, which is also common practice after a war or other major conflict, is offering up the body of the mightiest warrior of the enemy side that was slain, be it man or beast, in which case, they place them upon a stone altar, covered in flammable plants and other fibers, essentially creamating them as they pray for the warriors soul to reach the aforementioned mountain-top of the primordials. They later return the asses to the deseaced family, or they scutter them atop a mountain. Einherjar: The one true protector of all, the one who knows true sacrifice and punishes the selfish, Einherjar is the one who protects the ideals of his brothers, Feidelhm and Rioghnach, sacrificing himself, become a the litteral shiled that protects the mortal plains from Llue's curse. He imbodies the meaning of self-sacrifice, giving ones life to save anothers, often seen in Kæmhan culture, as high possition militants have jumped forth to take blows for their lower ranking brothers in arms. His true followers are few, yet they are the most respected, second only to those of Feidelhm. They are usually tasked with protecting the lands of the Kæmhan that go out to war, just in case war comes to their doorstep. Einherjar himself is portraid as a man with a sturdy turtle shell on his back, that is seemingly one with the rest of his armor, a moving fortress of some sort. His followers dress alike, in times of war or other conflicts they can be heard roaming their lands, patrolling for intruders or thiefs, being very noticable by their heavy steps due to the weigth of their armor. Due to their lack of numbers, most of these folk have grown fond of socializing, often resembling hermits, yet they still hold dear any friendships made from connections earlier in their childhood. Following that pattern, their trainings as well as their trial into adulthood is uknown to anyone apart from the very few left, though its speculated that the only requirement is the for one to be either crazy or brave enough to become a human shield. Even through all that however, they are usually the most attending parents, since their roles allow them to always be near their partners and children. As for their traditions they currently only celebrate the date of the death of a fellow follower of Einherjar every 10 years. In which, they use an empty turtle shell, as they fill it half-way with fresh sea water, as they pour the aforementioned fallen comrade's favourite bevarage, setting the shell down upon the ground, as they use a stick to steer the contents of the shell, before offering a prayer to the three brothers and then pushing the turtle shell into the waters, as it gets swept away by them. Llue: The hateful, the unjust, Llue is the neutral evil goddess of the depths, the one who released her infinite hatred towards the world, pushing us away from the eternal mountain-top of the primordials, leaving behind an infinite sea of destruction, our only vessel being our faith. She represents the hate of the close minded people, who flood the world full of lies and illussions just so they do not accept the truth about true freedom. She is portraid as a blue skinned woman with purple hair, however, that hair is actually tentacles, which are used to drag down into the cold depths those who oppose her. She is mostly hated by the Kæmhan people, thus there has not been any recorded instances of warship towards her, even if they were however, they would have been swiftly been dealt with by the Rioghs as they are strictly forbiden. Minor Deitys And Spirits: Haertha: The one births. Haertha is the mother of nature, she is kinda and warm to all those who care for nature, with her being warshiped primarily by woodelfs of the Kæmhan society, even if she is not considered as a primordial. In the pantheon, she is considered a Minor Deity of Forests and Mountains, while also being charged with animals, oceans and essentially all flora and fauna. She is depicted as a young woman, with enormous antlers sprouting from atop her skull, through her messy hair. In the traditional Kæmhan faith, she is viewed merely as a force of nature, that she will treat you how you treat her, thus all Kæmhan folk, regardless if they warship her or not, will always try to preserve nature if possible. Her followers also refrain from sacrifices, only going as far as preserve nature but, there have been many reports of them going to great lengths to punish those who harm it. Iðunn: The one who sees, the one who warns. Iðunn is less of a deity and more of a 'prophet', entirely 'warshiped' only by one person in the Kæmhan, which would be the Fæ'id, as they would seek his knowledge and foresight for up coming conflicts, diplomatic afairs or even how this year's crops would turn out. He is depicted as frail old man in purple robes, a long grey beard on his chin and neck, with the only other noticable feature being his missing left eye, that leaves behind a deep black smoke effect. Sacrifices are usually minor things, such as burning specific leaves or other ingredients, in order to create a smoke like trans so that he may pass down any predictions via a vision. Embla: The one who hosts. Embla is the Minor Deity of Fertility and Hospitality, as well as the wife of Einherjar. She represents family and the bonds that one family might hold dear. This would also include non-blood relatives, such as adopted children, since family is what you make of it and not it makes of you. Most Clan Leader warship her to some extent, prayer that she may bring hope and luck into their extended house holds, however, other individuals such as mothers make offerings to her, so that they may see their already existant kin rise, or if they wish to become a mother again. Offerings to her are small yet meaning full, such as singing a lullaby in front of a fire place or doorstep of their house, or hanging up small artifacts with meaning to them or their kin atop the fire place. A must for all her followers however, is to provide hospitality to anyone who may seek shelter within their walls. They will have to welcome any guests, provide for them food, drinks, a warm bath and bed to sleep for at least 3 days. When that has been done, the land owner can choose wether or not they allow the guest(s) to stay any longer. If not, then they will be given some neately homemade food and sent on their way. Sjofn: The mad one, the hateful one. Sjofn an evil spirit, that ressembles the feelings of pitty, jealousy, revenge and other injust negative emotions. She is often depicted as old hag, with white hair and pinkish eyes, as her leggs are those of a goat, causing her to have a commically short appearance. She is not typically warshiped, but one might decided to say a prayer to her if they wish for another to be plagued by bad luck or to be overcome with negative feelings. She also has a reputation of deception, as her jealousy of the mortals who have transended into a higher spiritual level anger her, thus she tries to temp them into stooping on her level by implanting them with feelings of doubt, this is also frequently seem amongst the spiritual warriors of the Kæmhan. Hodur: The who creeps, the one who haunts. Hodur is an abomination, hiding in plain sight, she is associated with dreams, specifically with nightmares and also works as a bad omen, though she is not just the messanger. She disguises herself as a young girl with a yellow hood, as she roams ones dreams, waiting for them to spot her, when that is done, the individual can feel their stomach drop, as she slowly makes her way towards them through the dream, altering it from small to incredibly horrific and gory details. Near the end of the dream she will reveal herself directly, a clear depiction of her face remains unknown, all anyone can remember is a cold feeling, as through that whole where her face should be, a dark void stares back, as a symbol slowly can be made out, before the individual awakens, drenched in cold sweat. The symbols vary drastically, yet some have been decyphered through the years, witht he most common being the following: -Fish: Death looms near those who are assosiated with the individual. -Wild Cat: Wild cats indicate a feature with worries. -Rotten Egg: Bad luck lays ahead. -Calm Water: Peace is near. -Leaves falling: Change is near. -Raven: Good luck lays ahead. Military And Hierarchy Hierarchy Structure: Both the Military and general Hierarchy structure for the Kæmhan is essentially the same, in the sense that there isnt one, not the in the typical sense at least. Within their communities, their exists no royalty, no kings or queens, nor princes and princesses. The general structure for the people is as follow: -Spiritual Leader, The Liberator, The Fæ'id: The Fæ'id is not born into the possiton, unlike most other hierarchies, he is instead elected, not only through the people, but also through the Primordials as well. Before one may even begin to consider becoming the Fæ'id, they must first go through the trials appointed to them by their Clan (The Maturity Trials), which on their own are challenge enougn, however, that is nothing compared to the mental training that they are put through, usually through the current Fæ'id or by an elder member of their Clan. The Fæ'id is the 'Leader' in more than one ways. While there is a Clan council within Kæmhan communities, it is not very common due to their current population that is not only thin but also spread all across the world, thus the Fæ'id has taken on the sole burden of 'leadership' of their people, which can be anything from managing religious events to even being in charge at times of war, since its the Fæ'id's responsibility to protect and serve their people. Due to all of this, the Fæ'id (like mentioned above) goes through intense physical and mental challenges, thus by the time a Fæ'id steps up to replace the old one, they are filled with knowledge, experience and ambitions. The one trait that the Fæ'id must lead by example with is True Neutruality, as at times they may be forced into being 'Judge, Jury and Excecutioner.' both literally and metaphorically, for both interal and external affairs. The view of the Fæ'id summarized with a simple example is the following: "The world is like a coin, it seemingly has two sides, heads and tails, yet people always seem to acknowledge the thrid sides, which is the ring around it, a very thin and fine line that belongs to neither of the aphromentioned two. Maintaining a place within that line is like a fine pressure, that can either create a diamon, or grind you into dust." Apart from that, the Fæ'id is also responsible for teaching people within or outside of their community (if they are willing) about the Soaring Faith and their belief systems in general. It is also their job to train the Preachers of the Soaring Faith, known as the Trauc'er. -The Trauc'ers, Preachers and Liberators: The Trauc'ers have a simple yet crucial role within the Kæmhan community, which is to preach and help the willing, via expanding their horizons through the teachings of the Soaring Faith, or to simply provide advice for those in need, believers or not. They are the ones who help the Fæ'id with any religious responsibilities and act like disciples of the Soaring Faith. -The Extended Kæmhan Military: The military structure of the Kæmhan is vast yet straight forward, however in a social ladder they stand right bellow the Preachers of the Soaring Faith and this category includes any and all military related personal, from the Plumes up to the Kriyell and everything in between. They are all respected and at some cases, usually the rather extreme Squadrons of the Spiritual warriors such as the Rioghna's, are usually feared as well due to their extreme skills and devotion to the cause. -The Kæmhan People: This includes everyone not included within the categories mentioned above, regardless of birth, power or economic status. They are the 'common-folk', with a majority of backgrounds much like the rest of the Kæmhan, ranging from liberated slaves, repented thieves up to warriors, scholars and merchants, as all are welcome in the eyes of the Kæmhan people, as long as they are willing to co-operate of course, with even cases of non-descendant races/creatures joining their ranks. Everyone within this category is essentially the backbone of the Kæmhan community, as they are the ones who keep it alive either through devotion to the faith, or simply because they feel like they want to help in any way they can and support the cause, without the need for warship. The Kæmhan Military and The Warriors Of The Soaring Faith Military Overview: The warriors of the Soaring Faith and the Kæmhan Military are essentially one entity working with different views and systems with the common feature of no clear hierarchy, in the sense that, no person is more important than any other, as they are all people fighting for their beliefs and their freedom. The Kæmhan Military focuses on protecting the people and any land owned by the Kæmhan as well as fighting in any and all conflicts if instructed by the Fæ'id while the Warriors of the Soaring Faith, regardless of the deity they warship or their possition, are always fighting under the direct command of the Fæ'id witht he own common purpose of Liberation of the people of the mortal realm, as well as the maintance of the peace and freedom of the Kæmhan people from any outside threat. Kæmhan Military Structure: The Kriyell: The Kriyell can be described as a General for the Kæmhan forces, acting directly under the Fæ'id in terms of military leadership, taking lead in the Fæ'id's absense as long as permission is given. Only one may be entitled to this role at a time period. The Grivs: The Griv are the 'Special' forces of the Kæmhan Military, a speciallized unit of honorable warriors that, for whatever reason, has chosen to refrain from the Soaring Faith or they just did not want to go through the trials to join one of the Spiritual Warrior groups of the Soaring Faith. They are the elite soldiers of the Kæmhan Military, with admirable brotherhood amongst the troops, perhaps at the cost of devotion to the Liberating cause of the Soaring Faith. The Plumes: The Plumes are the common soldier of the Kæmhan military, yet at the same time the most important part, as they are the backbone to the army themselfs, brotherhood also runs deep amongst them, with shared bonds and the wish to protect their land, homes and those who they hold dear. One might think that they are not as compotent as the Grivs, however, through sear determination and teamwork, they have overcome great foes and they continue to do so. Warriors Of The Soaring Faith: These people are the absolute pride of the Soaring Faith, as they are the truely devoted Liberators of the people across the mortal realm, carrying out the will of the Fæ'id via special missions, using their experience, expertise and other special skills that they may have acquired. They are split into divisions based ont heir Deity of choice and they specialize in different types of tasks, from assasins to frontlines and everything in between. Little is known about them due to the nature of their lifestyle, since their devotion leaves little space for them to engage in any activities, hobbies or anything else apart from family. Tradditions (More to be added in the future) Funerals & Grievings: The Kæmhan culture is straight forward towards funerals, as an ordinary citizen, believer or not , will be given a burrial and will be read a prayer by a Trauc'er in the hopes of salvation for their soul. Where as a warrior, will be cremated, and their asses will be spread wherever their family deems worthy. At the chance of no known relatives they will be again cremated, however this time, depending on who they were, based on beliefs and their service to the Kæmhan military, they might spread in the ocean or on a mountain top. Kæmhan Afterlife: The Kæmhan have their own version of 'Heaven' and 'Hell' without anything too specific being mentioned in their records. They refer to their version of heaven as "The Eternal Hilltop" and its a place high up upon the mountains where those who lived free lives go after they die. When they do die, they are judged by Feidelhm, the true Liberator of mortals, and depending on ones life, the god they warshiped and the deeds of their life, they get to join the deity they warshiped, or if they didnt warship one at all, they would be sent to the one that suited their life style the most. The warriors who fought and died to protect their brothers and sisters in arms go to Rioghnach, so that they may fight once more if they are ever needed to fend off against Llue. The warriors of Einherjar, who have protected their lands and their families, who have been the frontline for their brothers and sisters in arms, they will be the shield and frontline against Llue if she ever dares come back. And the Liberators of Feidelhm, they who have sacrificed everything for the freedom of their people, they shall join in him in the eternal journey to reclaim the birthright of Freedom for those who seek it. As of those who lived twisted lifes, that took advantage of others, who did not care about their fellow descendants, they shall be thrown into the deepest trench of Llues ever flowing oceans, made a slave for her ever present hold on people who hesitate to do the right thing. Forever alone in dispair, with no hope of salvation. Marriage and Relatiosnhips: Kæmhan tradition does not prohibit relationships before marriage, however it is frowned upon for a couple to have a child before they get married, with exceptions being made for couples who have adopted children. Marriage in the Kæmhan community is like mating for life, typically Kæmhan people only have one partner, however there have been rare exceptions through the years as well as same gender marriages, in both cases, it is acceptable like any other marriage, perhaps rarer. The marital ceremony is simple. After either man or woman proposes, a feast is hosted for the soon-to-be-wed couple, there traditional foods and drinks must be served by both families of the pair and at the end if the groom is the one that got proposed to, then his family must dump the remaining alcoholic and not alcoholic beverages on him, as a sign of good faith, of being washed over any last minute doubt and insecurities. (In the case of same-gender marriage, the one who got proposed to will be the one who will get the beverages dumbed upon them.) The wedding itself has very few limitations, such as guests requiring whatever they may judge as "formal" attire, only excluding any religious warriors of the Kæmhan, which are encouraged to wear clothing that reveals their marks, as a show of respect towards the couple. The choice of a priest is up to the couple, but anything is acceptable, from priests from other religions to even the Fæ'id themself. The couple is encouraged to create vowes much like other religions and even to exchange something apart from the usual ring, something of spiritual value, something symbolic of their bond.
  6. [!] Depiction of a dwarven pilgrim The Path of Pilgrimage 14 years ago, the Clergy declared the beginning of the Shrine Project, a project that aimed to construct shrines across Urguani lands for the Brathmordakin and to facilitate pilgrimages. The construction project was delayed many times due to various turbulences in the kingdom affecting the availability of builders, but the clergy is happy to announce that the Shrine Project is finally complete. One Shrine for Each Brathmordakin has been constructed in all the reaches of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, open to all faithful pilgrims to travel between and venerate the Brathmordakin, and perform religious rites within them. A pilgrimage will be held on The Grand Harvest, 127 S.A to all the shrines and venerate the Brathmordakin. (OOC: May 6th 3pm EST) [!] Paintings of the Shrines are attached below Shrine of Yemekar’s Balance Location: 1482 8 758 Statues of the Sons of Urguan are present in the main chamber. They represent the collective dwaven people today, since they all descended from them and thus as they represent all of us and our duties to uphold Yemekar’s Balance. The interior chamber features Urguan and Yudora, the first dwarves and a statue of Yemekar infont of a white anvil. Rites: Ancestral Veneration – all dwarves are welcome to come pay homage to their ancestors, whether to a particular patriarch or to Urguan and Yudora. With this, one is reminded of the continuous duty of the dwarven people to uphold Yemekar’s Blanace all the way from our progenitors. Smithing - The best way to honour Yemekar is to partake in the act of creation. Smith in front of Yemekar, so your crafts may receive guidance. Shrine of Dungrimm’s Respite Location: 1631 77 1692 Located next to the Legion training camp, this burial mound serves as a reminder for the dwarves of not only Dungrimm’s honour but the duty of all dwarves to respect our deceased ancestors and live with dignity and according to the word of the Brathmordakin so we may rejoin them in Kaz’A’Dentrumm. Rites: Weapon Offering – Next to the giant blade of Dungrimm, one may leave their weapon as an offering to him, so that it may be taken out and given to our ancestors in Kaz’A’Dentrumm. Safe Passage - Deep in the catacombs, when the moon shines above the skylight, prayer can be offered to Dungrimm for the safe passage of our deceased into Kaz’A’Dentrumm. Shrine of Armakak’s Bonfire Location: 588 76 1094 A tower with a beacon of fire shines on the side of the road. The Shrine of Armakak’s Bonfire is located on a popular trade route leading to Linnormr. Its fire beckons all travellers to come close and enjoy the warmth and engage in trade. Rites: Sunlit Trade - When the sun is high, bring out your wares and engage in joyous trading. With Armakak watching high above, trade with grace and reciprocity. Bonfire Offering - One may take some coins, jewellery or anything of value and set them ablaze in the bonfire atop the building, so that those precious objects may make their way to Armakak’s brilliant and burning realm of gold. Shrine of Anbella’s Embrace Location: 286 104 382 Anbella’s Embrace is hidden deep within the woods, a large grove underground in the woodland soil. The walls are covered in vines, moss and ancient engravings from the descendants of Gloin Treebeard. The skull of a gigantic beast lays petrified in front of Anbella’s Rings. Rites: Alms - Offer food, aid and medicine to those sick and weary travellers who come to this shrine. Nurture them as Anbella’s Grace nurtures us. Hunting Party - The local woods are filled with game, a hunt can be hosted to honour the gift of food Anbella has given to us, and then a feast is to be hosted with the catch. Though nothing must be wasted, nor the animals can be overhunted. Shrine of Ogradhad’s Wisdom Location: -109 83 -7 A burned-down hut was discovered on the outskirts of Urguan, when explored it was revealed to have been a library. Its librarian was a dwarf who tried to keep the secrets of our kind away from bandits, and in the process, their life was lost. Upon this land, a new shrine to Ogradhad was constructed in his honour. Rites: Book Donation - Ogradhad is the eternal preserver of knowledge, thus whatever knowledge possessed by the dwarven people must be shared between us so that it may be preserved just as Ogradhad guards our collective knowledge. Candle Sorcery - Candles are an essential tool for all scholars to be able to study deep into the night. Divination through the movement of said candles is a popular ritual popularised by the Prophet of Ogradhad, Tuzic Mossborn, who discovered the burned-down library in the first place. Shrine of Grimdugan’s Darkness Location: 84 82 132 With the Mori rising from the darkness, it is now more imperative than ever to properly honour Grimduguan, a Brathmordakin who has been greatly ignored in the history of dwarven worship. A gigantic obsidian dagger glows in the centre of the shrine, may it strike our enemies true. Rites: Darkness Meditation - Step into one of the unlit chambers of the shrine, and completely isolate yourself from outside noises. Allow your mind to enter Grimdugan’s shadow, so that when you open your eyes hidden caves may reveal themselves. After which one may leave an offering of treasure for Grimdugan to add to his hoard. Black water Bathing - Upon excavation, the miners discovered a pool of pure black water. It tastes and has the same properties as normal water, and yet it is pitch black, a clear symbol of Grimdugan’s darkness. Allow it to envelop you, so that the enemies who hide in it, will not be able to see you in their midst. Shrine of Belka’s Tide Location: Boat (ooc: warp) at 1206 68 2021, then 2724 63 2346 With the expulsion of the vile pirates from the Dark Islands, the Urguani navy slowly established bases upon it to prevent their return. A shrine to Belka stands proud and defiant against the island’s constant storms, keeping away dark corsairs and deep monsters away from our ships. Rites: Lightning Calling - Leave offerings of beautiful objects, drinks and seafood to Belka and chant prayer for her to summon divine lightning upon the enemies of Yemekar’s Balance. Tidal Reverly - When the waves are high, and the storms are strong, drink a strong ale and walk along the shore. Show the strength of revelry in you, to enjoy the life the Brathmordakin have given us, even in the most dire of situations. Narvak oz Brathmordakin
  7. Khaz’a’dentrumm ᚲᚺᚨᛉᚨᛞᛖᚾᛏᚱᚢᛗᛗ [Music] “I lay dying on that rock from mid-eve until nightfall, surrounded by the mixed bodies of friend and foe alike. For the better part of the day the sea storms blew salty wind upon my broken body, but as the full moon rose, the clouds parted for the Masked Lord’s alabaster hall to rise above the black sea. If I was to die that day, there would be no other place I would rather die than in the gaze of Dungrimm’s pale moonlight. As my blood spilled onto the cold, wet pebbles of that rocky beach, tangled within the limbs and corpses of slain Dwed, I saw a sight I shall never forget-- for eight shining Dwedlonarri descended upon golden goats from the light of the moon itself. Without wings and without effort, they flew upon the dark firmament to the battlefield. From the body of Dwarf to the body of Dwarf they walked and lifted them whole into their hands, though before my eyes their body remained in pieces on the ground before me. To Agilmar, and Droctbold, and Gangulf did they walk and lifted them up onto the back of their goat, taking the bodies of the Ironborn too with them indiscriminately. And yet, as one passed to me, I saw only blinding moonlight when I gazed upon her face. I remember nothing after this, as I awoke being dragged from under the body of Gangulf, finally found by another crew from da Kirkja Gorix. I knew it was not my time, but that the warriors who died that day would find themselves before the Lord of Death that night.” -The words of Viligast Grimgold, sole survivor of the raid of Tal’Karaave, Age of Blood Artists representation of the Daughters of Dungrimm descending from the moon. There is a place where a soul goes when death finds it-- Khaz’a’dentrumm, the Halls of the Slain. Located high above the mortal realm upon the ivory disk known as the moon. It is here that Dungrimm, Lord of Death and War, holds his court. In these sacred halls the fate of souls are decided, and those who find themselves lacking are cast into Vuur’dor, the Void. There are many interpretations of the guide of the soul to these hallowed halls. Some believe that Dungrimm or Belka serve as the psychopomp of a soul, while others grant it to a lesser divine being, such as the Daughters of Dungrimm or Kjellos. Whatever interpretation of the guide of the soul is correct is of little consequence, as it is what happens within the halls of Dungrimm that bears the most importance. Upon entrance to these halls, one will find themselves surrounded by their friends and family, leading back to their first ancestors. After this greeting, the soul will be called before the throne of Dungrimm and the other Brathmordakin will be summoned to high seats in the hall. The entire life and deeds of the spirit will be judged by Dungrimm, highest of judges, and it will be determined if they have lived their life in accordance with Yemekar's Rhun. Artists representation of Dungrimm before the gates of Khaz'a'dentrumm. If one is found to be worthy, they will be bid upon by the Brathmordakin assembled in what is called the Auction of the Dead. It is the realm of who bids the highest for the soul where the final afterlife of the individual shall be. Brathmordakin are more likely to bid upon the soul of one who lived in accordance with their domain and teachings. Once the auction has been completed, the soul will go to live and serve in the hall of the Brathmordakin of their patronage. If one is found to be lacking, or if as some say their soul is not bid upon by a Brathmordakin, they shall be cast through the gates of Vuur’dor, into the bowels of the Void, where some believe Khorvad lies. What happens once the soul has been cast into the depths of the void is a mystery to us upon the mortal realm. Some believe it is destroyed entirely, others that it is churned and reborn to try again, and some yet still believe they are left to Khorvad’s desires and wishes. All souls will one day find themselves within the halls of judgment, rich or poor, warrior or coward, young or old. In truth, the fate of the souls of foreigners is not known, with some claiming that non-Dwarven souls find themselves in lesser realms upon death. Others still believe that they too will find themselves in Dungrimm’s halls, yet without the teachings of the gods most find themselves cast out into Vuur’dor. Only in death will we know for certain. The date of one’s death is known only to the Brathmordakin, which is why it is important for one to live each day in accordance with Yemekar's Rhun.
  8. ESSAY ON THE PERSEVERANCE OF FAITH Vasili Valic I pray to Sigismund, for we live in a time like his. We Adrians are not the august lords of one great empire, as was Godfrey, we are not mythic icons of the ideal as Horen, and we are not yet redeemed as Owyn. Like Sigismund, we live in a time of low moral authority, of a humanity fractured and compromised in the absence of what once was. I have been blessed by my father, Velislav, with the great histories of our people, what was once known as Ruska or the great Raevir. I may be off base, as subject to the many hundreds of years ago I write of and the erosion of time, but nevertheless in such trying times I must try to use this gift to the advantage of common Adrian, especially those in doubt of their conscience. I can understand the sentiments of those souls, some more forgivable than others, which would receive the actions of our crooked Pontiff, and our occupied Canonist faith, as a sign of its death. These folk would believe schism is the option in the face of excommunication, that because our Pontiff is fallible, so is our belief. One must never forget that Godfrey's immediate descendants abandoned Oren in its hour of need against the Kingdom of Urguan. Though rectified some decades later through the Imperium Tertius, it was his exodus and its shadow in which Sigismund lived, in a humanity subjugated by non-humans. We do not exalt Sigismund for his reign, but his restoration. It was Sigismund who, in the face of a humanity that failed, decided not to abandon its faith in decline, but who reunited mankind under one cause, from Flotsam to Abresi, to restore the agency of humanity to its own hand. It is Sigismund's translations of the scrolls that from which our faith descends in its identity. Those who would seek to remove him from the annals of the Canon would be doing so for the purpose of illiterate megalomania, unaware that the truths they preach even against his name were written by his pen. We live in a time of Dragons and Ghouls, Vampires and other ilk; each side of the current conflict would have you believe the other is their agent. I do not believe either to be true. However, there is not a settlement in the world today which does not harbor the ill omens of undeath or immortal pacts with daemons. Humanity then is subjugated as it was then in Sigismund’s time. We are in a stasis, a vacuum of moral direction plagued by the absence of one just goal. We must think like Sigismund at this time. We must not abandon Canonism simply because there are those within it who are mortally villainous, for it is our unified faith of Humanity. We need not schism ourselves from the world simply because it wants us to. We are human, like any other, and we are, in Adria, the true and eldest heirs to Carrion. Alongside it, we carry the indomitable spirit of freedom and rectitude that has seen it burn in the face of unholy tyranny time and time again. I speak to you Adrians, to pray to the restorer of moral rectitude once more in our time of excommunication. We must not entertain these crooked souls who know neither victory nor defeat, hiding behind their walls for perpetuity while they strangle our faith to death. We must fight for our faith. We must liberate Canonism, not send it to hospice. We must liberate our identity and right titles from the Hansetian menace, not consign them to their perpetual torment under its roof. Do not resign your beliefs simply because others wish you to. Affirm them in spite of this.
  9. Narvok oz ok Arkon Thrummaz [!] A messenger bird arrives to dwed across Urguan, relaying the news! [!] A blessing, and a joyous discovery! The expedition for knowledge in Ogradhad's name has been completed, and with it were recovered some preserved ancient texts, written by old dwed of continents long passed. And along with such precious texts, some relating to the nature of the Rhun, came also the discovery of a story to this old place. One of a brave and devout dwed... who stood to defend what he believed in. An encounter with giant spiders complicated the investigation but was dealt with accordingly... The ancient texts were discovered within the ruins of a small library... likely a safekeeping for the follower of the Warden of Knowledge that watched over it. Most incredibly however, a hole in the roof had rendered most of the texts destroyed... except for four books, those that sat nearest to the shrine of Ogradhad contained within... These texts will be put on display within The Grand Library in Kal'Darakaan, for all to view. Rare is it that the Brathmordakin reach down and show their influence upon the realm of the descendants. To honor such a blessing, Da Kirkja Verga will renovate this old place, and it shall be reformed into a grand temple in worship to Ogradhad, so that all may show their veneration to him in the hallowed place. Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad
  10. Narvok oz ok Arkon Thrummaz Kozzhunki'mar eron Grond [!] A missive is posted on the various homes, notice boards, and clan halls around the Grand kingdom of Urguan. [!] Having received word of an ancient ruin within the lands of The Grand Kingdom of Urguan, potentially holding ancient historical, and spiritual knowledge, Da Kirkja Dverga will embark on an expedition to this lost place. I - The prophet of Ogradhad, call upon those who value the preservation of knowledge, as well as those for whom the call of adventure rings in their ears, to join me and ride to this ruin. For those that heed my call, equip yourselves well to repel whatever creatures may have taken hold in the long abandoned ruins. Narvok oz ok Arkon Thrummaz Glory to the Sage King Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad OOC Info:
  11. [!] You find a flier pinned to your burrow's front door. IN PRAISE O' KNOX ~Our Guardian Spirit~ He who has blessed us, Lord Knox himself, must nay be neglected in these troubling times! We must continue to devote ourselves to Him, our spiritual Guardian and Advisor in these times (and indeed in all times), for without Him we are not whole. Let us gather together to answer the following questions: ~Our Lord, Creation, and the Nature of Time~ ~Opposing Cultists & Their Evil Deeds~ ~What Knox Asks from US, and What He Can Provide~ We are to gather in the Knoxist Church next Pumpkin Day. Lord Knox bless us all, and may Billy Bob's taters stay in our pockets! ~Mimosa Applefoot, Mayor of Bywater. ((Event TOMORROW on Thursday the 5th of January, 2023, 6 PM EST. Located within Bywater, the home of halflings and gnomes on Almaris. Directions: ))
  12. THE JULI c. 1780“A Young Selie boy" ORIGINS, FROM THE GROTTO The Juli find their start in the time of Horen - Though humanity traces their lineage from Horen, the Juli trace theirs from the Anointed Julia of Paradisus. In her most notable miracle, the Anointed Julia protected an expectant mother from the ails of corruption. There were, however, two miracles that day. The light that shone from the ring not only revealed the necromancer for what it was, but it also blessed the unborn bairn of the mother. Months later the mother would give birth to triplets; Ifiemi, mother of the Ifie, Selam, mother of the Selm, and Selassie, mother of the Selie. The girls born with deep black skin, hair, and eyes also came out of the womb with golden bands, a sign that they had been touched by the Anointed Julia. Ifiemi had a golden band around her waist, Selam around her left leg, and Selassie around her right arm. Once the triplets were of age they joined the Anointed Julia in Paradisus as her attendants and confidants. Ifiemi served as her protectorate, Selam her handmaiden, and Selassie her scribe. Eventually the triplets would each have triplets, and those children would each have triplets, and their numbers grew in size, all except for Selassie. After the death of their beloved holy mother, the Anointed Julia, the cult of Juli was formed and this is where the Juli get their name. Fearing persecution and with nothing left for them in Paradisus, the Juli fled the famed city in search for new lands. The light of the Anointed Julia led them to the Grotto of Merkai. As the Juli entered into this new land, the Anointed Julia closed the foliage behind them and hid them from those who would seek to do them harm. c. 1620 “Anointed Julia, Protectorate of Merkai” The light of Anointed Julia stood foot at the gates of Merkai. Though they were isolated, the few pure-hearted outsiders, Canonist or not, who did not wish to do the Juli harm could spot the Anointed Julia’s golden rings in the Peacock feathers and sunflowers that marked the gates of Merkai. At the center of the Grotto of Merkai stood a large bubbling spring that met the sea. It was here that the Anointed Julia came to Selassie and pointed out the origins of her birth. It’s said that the Anointed Julia had emerged from the gurgle of the water with drops of pure light dripping from her figure. It was here that the first gift was given. Selassie entered the waters of Merkai and re-emerged renewed and youthful again. What she did not know was that she also grew pregnant. In her palm she held the mother of pearl, a large iridescent white stone that represented Tranquility, Purity, and Governance. c. 1620 “Birth of Anointed Julia” The Juli, free from their plight, sought to make a home for themselves in the Grotto of Merkai. They built domed homes and towers in the style of Paradisus, but they forgot one thing. One night, a group of leopards strolled into their settlement. As screams let out, Ifiemi and her children and children’s children sprang into action. They soared their large spears through the black of the night, killing all the leopards but one. Spear nor sword could not pierce the hide of this white leopard. This is when the Anointed Julia gave her second gift. A light shined down on the White Leopard, setting the creature on fire instantly. The only thing remained was its white hide, which could not be pierced by any man made tool or weapon. The hide represented Reverence, Protection, and Strength In celebration, the Juli held their first traditional feast: the feast of leopards. Here they danced, drank, and ate in merriment. During the feast it began to rain, casting Merkai into darkness as it extinguished every lamp and fire. The rain slowly turned into a storm as strong winds and gray clouds rolled into Merkai. Selam, refusing to let the weather destroy their festivities, kindled a torch to re-light the lamps of Merkai. As she raced into the thick of the storm from lamp to lamp while her flame dwindled, a loud boom could be heard throughout Merkai. The torch erupted into a large column of fire that was impervious to rain and storm. This was the Anointed Julia’s third and final gift: the eternal flame, which represented Resilience, Harmony, and Progress. With the three gifts from the Anointed, Selassie, Selam, and Ifiemi became the three beloved: defenders and founders of Julianism. One night, Selassie received a vision from the mother of pearl: flee. When the undead spread across Aegis, Merkai was one of the last places still standing, but they did not stop them from permeating the thick foliage in search for death. Selam lit fire to the Grotto with the eternal flame, destroying Merkai and the undead that had overran it. Ifiemi used the white hide as a raft for the Juli to escape on. And Selassie used the mother of pearl to guide a way to new lands. It was here on the raft that Selassie gave birth to Inan. With the birth of Imani, GOD delivered the Scroll of Divulgence to the Juli. Since then, the Juli have forever hidden themselves from Horen and his men. Though the Grotto can never be restored, they now take comfort in the isles that dot the coastline of each new land they arrive to. Their black towers and homes, reminiscent of Paradisus, appear to be rock formations jutting out of the water, but if you listen closely you can hear singing at night. CHURCH OF JULIARD The Church of Juliard is a monotheistic religion. Julinists believe in the one true living GOD who is the all-father and creator of the universe. Julinists recognize that he is the innate source of good and those that practice good deeds follow the virtues set by GOD. Despite the earnest virtues of some heretics and pagans, this will not earn them a voyage into the Seven Seas alongside GOD as they will be sent to the vast, a perpetually dark desert where damned souls die. Those who do practice and adhere to the wisdom of GOD will gain a voyage into the Seven Seas. Within Julinistic faith, the Seven Seas is depicted to be the far horizon where the sky meets water, while the vast is an intermediate space where souls eventually fade away. It is important to note, however, that Julinists do not seek out converts. The faith is passed down through the matrilineal line as the light was passed through the Beloved sisters. Those who wish to convert by their own will are accepted into the fold, but the light will not pass through them in the way it does for the Juli. Julinists practice Julianism, which is similar to Canonism but differs in interpretations of the first family of humankind. Though the races of Elves, Humans, Orcs, and Dwarves trace their lineage to the four sons of the first-coupling, Julianism highlights and prioritizes the sanctity of the Anointed Julia. The four sons came from GOD’s creation while the Anointed Julia came directly from GOD. The four sons and their lines were cursed while the Anointed Julia remained untouched. For this reason, it is clear she is anointed by GOD and the closest to purity. It is believed by Julinists that Julia is the daughter of GOD and thus was his to marry to Horen. Through marriage they are both venerated, but Julia is depicted as an extension of GOD on Eos and Aos whereas Horen is simply her husband. Their duties were shared but wholly different. Despite mistranslations, incorrect interpretations, and being cut entirely from Canon lore, the Church of Juliard mostly agrees with the scrolls. There is, however, a missing scroll that serves as the main doctrine for Julianism: the Scroll of Divulgence, which marks the Juli as GOD’s chosen people and saviors of humanity as they carry the light of GOD through the Anointed Julia. The Quattor is the place of religious worship for Julinists. A typical Quattor is a round domed (with a hole in the middle of the dome) room submerged into any body of water. At night, the waters will rise within the Quattor as the Moon stretches out over the Quattor. There are four spires attached to each Quattor, each spire holding an effigy of a Beloved. Carved from the blackest stone the Beloved Selassie sits in the north spire with a white stone held at her heart, the Beloved Selam sits in the west spire with a torch raised in the air, the Beloved Ifiemi sits in the east spire with a cloak draped over her, and the Beloved Inan sits in the south spire with a chalice at his heart. In the middle of the Quattor sits a wide hole in which kindling lit by the eternal flame is submerged by water yet still burning. c. 1680 “Saint Luliya” THE ANOINTED Ant. Julia - Golden Ring Patron of Marriage, Light, and Women Mother of the Juli THE BELOVED Blv. Selassie - Mother of Pearl Patron of Tranquility, Purity, and Governance Mother of the Selie Blv. Selam - Eternal Flame Patron of Harmony, Resilience, and Progress Mother of the Selm Blv. Ifiemi - White Hide Patron of Reverence, Protection, and Strength Mother of the Ifie Blv. Inan - Golden Chalice Patron of Priesthood, Childbirth, and Wisdom Revealer of the Scroll of Divulgence SAINTS St. Horen - Golden Laurel Revealer of the Scroll of Virtue Patron of Humanity, Covenants, Men St. Adamma - Whetstone Patron of Labour, Craftsmen, and Builders St. Luliya - Golden Crown Patron of the Poor, Abandoned, and Vengeance BLESSED Bl. Owyn - Flaming Sword Revealer of the Scroll of Spirit Patron of Purity, War, and Fire Bl. Godfrey - Silver Scepter Revealer of the Scroll of Gospel Patron of Dominion, Glory, and Justice Bl. Sigismund - Iron Globus Cruciger Revealer of the Scroll of Auspice Patron of Clairvoyance, Wisdom, and Sight ISOLATION AND PROTECTION Though the Juli have rarely had much contact with other people, the Ifie are trained in various forms of combat. From spear wielding to the longsword, they are prepared to defend their faith and homeland. The favored weapon of the Juli are their circlets. Circlets are sharp circular hand-held weapons that come in a few different sizes. The hand circlet is used to slice and stab through close combat, the circlettes are thrown at long distances and cut through their victims, and the circline is a long pole with a curved metal head that acts in similar manner to a scythe. The metals vary in colors but typically take on a bronze-ish hue after undergoing a glazing process. c. 1700s The Juli are well versed in the manning and controlling of ships. Often frequenting water-heavy areas, it’s a necessary component of everyday life. Most children exit the womb knowing how to swim and quickly take to sparring in the shallow waters of beaches and lakes. Though their ships are not equipped with canons, they’re extremely light and fast giving them an advantage in travel time and getting away. Due to their reclusive nature, the Juli are rarely seen on horseback but have been seen with a leopard or two. THE SELIE, SELM, AND IFIE The Juli typically find themselves in warmer cultures near the ocean. While they enjoy the beautiful things of life, they understand that life is fleeting and would be ready to leave their possessions behinds in a moments notice. Men and women wear fairly loose clothing in layers, the more layers showing how wealthy you were. Head coverings are stylistic along with makeup. While jewelry is very common amongst the Juli, it is not ornately made into different shapes but comes in the form of bands. It would be uncommon to ever find a piece of jewelry not in the form of a circle. The Juli age like normal humans but retain their youthfulness for much longer as a 60 year old Juli could easily pass for 40. The Juli can be divided into three cultures that work into one functioning society. Though work is not restricted by these cultures, the tribe they’re born into is what they were “destined” to do. Tribes pass through the matrilineal lineage of families; depending on what tribe the mother was a part of determines what tribe the bairn would be a part of. THE SELIE, Our Leaders From Beloved Selassie The Selie are by-far the smallest group amongst the Juli. Typically taking on roles of governance, the Selie are political, religious, and local leaders. Due to their duties to Juli society, their main priority is in service of others. They rarely have children if at all and often marry outside of their tribe. The Juli are ruled by a monarchy which passes down to whichever elected kin the monarch chooses. While nobility isn’t a concept, there are esteemed families within the Selie that have large monopolies over certain sectors of government. Featurally, the Selie are known for their round faces and long locs of hair. Different hairstyles show off their families and heritage. Selies who go on to be priests have access to a special herb that turns their hair and sometimes eyes white. Like Selassie, almost all Selie have a scar in the shape of a band on their right arm as the birthmark is passed down. Very few are born with their bands being made of gold, those who are born with gold bands are said to be filled with more light than others. c. 1400 “First Queen of House Mann” THE SELM, Our Builders From Beloved Selam The Selm are the largest group amongst the Juli. Typically taking on artisan and craftsmen roles within society, the Selm are the backbone of the Juli economy. The Selm have the most freedom when it comes to their occupational status and are commonly known to travel amongst the line of Horen. With the Selm holding the knowledge of the outside world around them, they find interesting ways to make their money from selling secrets or even people. The Selm also act as the architects of Juli cities, which are designed after Paradisus so they say. Featurally, the Selm are known for their flat faces and round, short bodies. The Selm are the most adorned group as they gladly wear fine headdresses and jewelry. Like Selam, almost all Selm have a scar in the shape of a band on their left leg as the birthmark is passed down. Very few are born with their bands being made of gold, those who are born with gold bands are said to be filled with more light than others. c. 1700s “Portrait of Eskender Liya” THE IFIE, Our Protectors From Beloved Ifiemi The Ifie are the second largest group amongst the Juli. Typically taking on militaristic and sportive roles in society, the Ifie are the protectors of the Juli. The Ifie serve in the larger Juli guard but also work as mercenaries for hire. The Ifie are also extremely intelligent. Skilled in naval warfare, astronomy, and mathematics, the Ifie make formidable opponents on the battlefield and the war room. Many Ifie have chosen the route of scholars rather than warfare. Featurally, the Ifie are known for their slender frames and short deep red hair. The Ifie wear what is most comfortable for them but typically always wear some form of protection. Like Ifiemi, almost all Ifie have a scar in the shape of a band on their torso as the birthmark is passed down. Very few are born with their bands being made of gold, those who are born with gold bands are said to be filled with more light than others. c. 1780s “The Scholar, Makonnen Zuri” ARCHITECTURE Juli architecture is modeled after the city of Paradisus. It was a welt kept secret amongst the builders of the Selm tribe who had hoped that by building paths into the sea that they'd find a way to reach GOD. c. 1820 “Great Quattor of the Beloved Sisters” DIALECT The Juli pick up on languages quickly but always talk in a very particular way not similar to any other human. On top of them speaking very fast, they often over-enunciate consonants at the end of the sentence and often drop the r from various words. For example, a Juli would pronounce “Church of Juliard” as “Chutch of Juli-ed” PHRASES & WORDS Mo/M’ - My Asu Ashi - God Mama - Mother Baba - Father Liji - Child Hujambo - Hello Kwaheri - Bye Asu jambo - Good Morning Usu jambo - Good Night Asu - Day Usu - Night Moto - Beautiful Zaidi - More/Very Gawa - Go Asante - Thank you Karnibu - You’re Welcome Anu Chupi - Curse Word Jalme - King Jalkia - Queen Weupe - Outsider “ Asu jambo mo jalkia, we found weupe at the gates of usu. Good morning my queen, we found outsiders at the gates of night. ” NOTABLE JULI FAMILIES House Mann, Selie ruling family of the Juli. House Liya, Selm merchant family. House Zuri, Ifie family with skilled fighters and generals. Male Names Abai, Addisu, Afework, Ajani, Aklilu, Alimayu, Anbassa, Bemnet, Biruk, Cherenet, Dejen, Desta, Eskender, Fikru, Fikremariam, Gebre, Haile, Isayas, Jember, Kassahun, Kebede, Kidus, Lami, Makonnen, Mesfin, Neberu, Negash, Tafari, Yafet, Zelalem. Female Names Abeba, Akutasgm Amhara, Ayana, Belkis, Dinkinesh, Fana, Gelila, Genet, Genzebe, Habesha, Hamelmal, Hirut, Iniku, Jahzara, Kelile, Kelemi, Luliya, Marye, Mariam, Mihret, Negassi, Nebiri, Rahwa, Rebka, Samrawit, Sebie, Selam, Selassie, Taitu, Zeudi. OOC: If you have thoughts, suggestions, or are interested developing this culture further PLEASE reach out to me: erostea#3429
  13. The Emerald Book: Ogradhad A dwarf kneeling in front of Ogradhad. [source] “With the birth of the mind, came the creation of another great being, one connected to the consciousness of life and the realms. This being is Ogradhad. The knowledge and wisdom he possesses are both innate and collected, both profound and esoteric. Ogradhad is the one who reveals the secrets of the world to us, his candle burns away the darkness of ignorance.” - Inscriptions within the Remembrancers Guild Ogradhad The Sageking Ogradhad is the Brathmordaking of Wisdom, Invention and Magic. It is no surprise then, that scholars venerate him the most. The Loremaster can be honoured by tending to places where knowledge is kept, such as libraries. Libraries may even be considered shrines or temples to Ogradhad. However, not all knowledge is stored in books, and one doesn’t need to be a scholar to engage in the sharing and protection of knowledge. The Sageking does not just preside over existing knowledge, one needs to create new knowledge to progress dwarvenkind. Inventors who apply Ogradhads knowledge and wizards who try and decipher ancient secrets are also favoured by him. The Lessons of Insight: The Lessons of Insight are a series of beliefs, ideas and principles gathered from the annals of library and history, to elucidate ways for dwarves to live by Ogradhad’s ways. Grond: meaning Discover in dwarven. This lesson refers to invention, experimentation, research, study and anything relating to the discovery of new knowledge. Those who pursue new knowledge and insights for the sake of their people are the truest worshippers of Ogradhad. One must also not solely dedicate themselves to one field of study, for such often leads to the development of a narrow viewpoint. Learning and discovering different things when the opportunity presents itself is pious, honourable and above all practical. Grond is the antithesis of stagnation. For when one dedicates themselves to discovery, one must not remain bound to outdated dogmas which keep society from advancing. Those who hoard knowledge for their own selfish desires are detrimental to Yemekar’s Balance, as it hinders the spreading of progress. “The thumping of your mortar and pestle, the bubbling of your cauldron, the hiss of your alembic, the flipping of your pages and the scribbling of your notes are all prayers to Ogradhad.” - Quote from an unknown master alchemist. Lordak: This word means Magic in dwarven. This tenant not only refers to the study and use of magic, but it is also a lesson about the dangerous nature of knowledge. Ogradhad is the Brathmordkin of Magic as well, meaning to practice the arcane arts is to honour Ogradhad. However practising magic can often lead to madness for power, to delve into foul and vile forces like Necromancy, which goes against Yemekar’s Balance. To live by Lordak, one must explore the depths of the arcane, using their abilities to protect Yemekar's balance, while refusing to succumb to the dark powers of The Betrayer. The same can be said for knowledge, one must be able to use knowledge for the greater good, and not spread despair and destruction. Due to the burdens of certain magics, its study requires prayer, meditation and guidance for how it may be best applied to serve Yemekar’s Balance. “The mortal dwed’s greed for knowledge grew limitless. Sparing not life nor honour to obtain it. And soon, after being granted secret magical powers by the Vile Dark - he built a grand library, greater than was ever built.” - “But behind him, the shadow of Khorvad loomed. He was but a puppet, a minion of the Vile Darkness.” - Ogradhad and The Nightbreak, by Dlunar Irongrinder. Kahiv: Is the dwarven word of Wisdom. The accumulation of knowledge and the sharpening of one's intellect are excellent pursuits in life, but they are for nought if one does not possess wisdom. A person is wise when they know how to apply their knowledge in different situations. Such a skill can only be gathered through experience. Thus Kahiv teaches us not to waste our lives only reading through books, only to then freeze up when something unexpected happens. Thus one must be worldly and curious, seeking out new things to experience and discover, so one may grow as a person. An excess of knowledge with a deficiency in experience can bring harm due to arrogance and poor judgement. “When yer nose beh glued to tha books, ye cannae see tha greatest lessons and stories that lay ahead o’ ye, yet to beh shared.” - Quote from Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad. Arkonrumm: Arkonrumm translates to Remembrancer. Knowledge is sacred, and to avoid it being lost to the annals of time, it must be recorded and passed down. Such is the role of a Remembrancer. To scribe on parchment, traditional oral retellings, sculptures, art, demonstrations, and any way of passing knowledge can be used to serve as an Arkonrumm. Anyone can become a teacher, and it is a great way to pass on knowledge and to live by the principal of Arkonrumm. “What good is a book to those who have no place to store them? My mind is an endless library, my tongue a bottomless inkpot. The words I spread ring clearly in the minds of those who I tell them. And those who hear them shall spread to their own kin and so on and so on.” - A response from a revered dwarven storyteller. Post Scriptum: Ogradhad is one of the Brathmordkin that deals less with the natural realms such as Anbella or Grimduguan, but more with a conceptual domain of knowledge. Unfortunately, I only see only a few clans and individuals venerating Ogradhad and the important work he does. This is the reason why Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad and I have collaborated to write this entry into the Emerald Book. The typical dwarf often stereotypes worship of Ogrdadhad as being a stuffy librarian, even though such is not necessarily the case. The learning of new knowledge and the spread of it can be done by anyone, which is what I hoped to illustrate with this work. May it be noted that this is not clerical canon, but my personal views upon the Brathmordkin. The collections present in The Emerald Book are that of my own contemplations. Sources: Co-Author Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad Various Clerical Texts The works of Falk Irongut The beliefs of various Clans Legends of Dlunar Irongrinder Hefrumm cosmological studies The Dwarven Language Encyclopedia
  14. [!] You find a flier in your aviary mailbox KNOX Shall Guide Us! The United Knoxist Church of Bywater is now open for mass, private prayers, weddings, and other such religious activities! Within this church we shall worship the perfection of creation, the Great Farmer Billy Bob who grew us from the fields, and Lord Knox, our patron spirit! All are welcome to attend, be they worshippers of the true faith, shamanic or druidic teachings, or pagan religions from abroad, for all are welcome within the Knoxist church. May Knox bless Bywater and all weefolks (Gnomish and halfling alike) and reward the faithful with His blessings. May the potatoes from the creator Billy Bob never stop flowing! ~Mimosa Applefoot, local Knoxist religious leader. ((Knoxist mass event at 5 PM EST, Monday the 26th of December, 2022. Located within Bywater, the home of the halflings: ))
  15. The Holy Delve [source] This is a call to all members of the faith, A mysterious ruin has been discovered in the Deep Roads under the city of Kal’Draakan, in Grimdugan’s Realm. In order to recover lost artefacts and discover the lost history of the faith, da Kirkja Dverga calls upon all worshippers of the Brathmordkin, and especially the devotees of Grimdugan, to brave the darkness of Grimdugan for the sake of learning more about our lost histories. An expeditionary force, organised and headed by Hana Starbreaker, shall be assembled in the coming days in order to venture into the depths of these ruins. [OOC: FRIDAY THE 16TH, AT 3PM EST] Narvok oz Grimdugan Narvok oz Brathmordkin
  16. The Tome of Core Beliefs Brathmordakin General: The Brathmordakin are the highest power in the cosmos, integral to its functioning and a fundamental part of reality. Yemekar forged the souls of the descendants, with the dwedmar being his masterwork. Beard: A dwed’s beard is holy as it is a gift from the Brathmordakin Yemekar, a sign of his favour of the dwarven race. One must take care of this gift. Khorvad: The Fallen Brathmordakin Khorvad is a traitor of the Brathmordakin, conspiring to amass infinite power for itself. Worship of Khorvad is heretical. Worship: No single dwarf can claim to be a direct speaker of the Brathmordakin. One can commune with the Brathmordakin, and receive inspiration, direction or images from them. However, claiming to know their will is an act of usurpation of power and supreme arrogance. The Council of Prophets must use their wisdom granted through study and prayer to guide the populace, not impose their will by claiming to be direct mouthpieces of the Brathmordakin. The Dwarven Race: The dwarven race has been created in the image of Yemekar and is favoured by him. The killing of a dwarf is the greatest sin against the Brathmordkin. A dwarf that kills another dwarf loses the blessing of Yemmekar and is hence not a dwarf anymore. Thus, a dwarf that has kinslayed (murdered another dwarf) can be killed by another dwed. Self-defence is permitted however. Council: The idea of a council is integral to dwarven society. As the Brathmordkin are a council of themselves, so must the dwarves share the burden of decision amongst their kin, for only by taking into account the perspective of others can an honourable decision be made. The Council also functions as a way to hinder Khorvad’s poison of ambition, by not allowing one single dwarf to hold too much power. Soul General: The soul, forged by the Brathmordakin, is the ultimate creation. As such it must be protected and cherished. Punishments involving imprisoning, damaging, corrupting or manipulating souls are Khorvadic. The willing transfer of the soul into a golem body, or into an epiphyte by ritual are allowed, as long as the individual is informed and consenting to the risks, as well as the learning of voidal magics for the sake of the dwarven people and upholding balance. Auction of the Dead: Upon a dwarf’s death, their soul travels to Khaz'A'Dentrumm, the Halls of the Dead. There, the Brathmordakin bid for the dwarf's soul. A Dwarf has a higher chance of being auctioned to a specific god based on their service to them in life. Vuur’dor: Souls that fail to uphold their duties to the Brathmordkin are exiled to Vuur’dor. Religion Openness: Every single descendant is allowed to engage in the worship of the Brathmordakin, regardless if they are a member of Da Kirkja Dverga or not. Yemekar's Balance Dwarves are the keepers of balance throughout the realm, as commanded by Yemekar. This is interpreted can be in many different ways, but in general, it means to uphold balance in all of Yemekar's creations. Freedom Anyone is allowed to create or join other religious sects dedicated to the Brathmordakin, for as long as those religious institutions do not disrespect any of the Brathmordakin, or violate the principles stated above. This includes encouraging clans to have faith in their own beliefs. -This Tome was formed, agreed upon, stamped and signed by the Council of Prophets of Da Kirkja Dverga- High Prophet Garedyn the Green, Prophet of Yemekar Prophet Asketil Blackroot, Prophet of Belka Prophet Dhaen Grandaxe, Prophet of Anbella Prophet Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad Prophet Alaric Grimgold, Prophet of Dungrimm
  17. Covenant of Da Kirkja Dverga Title One: Clergy leadership Art I. Da Kirkja Dverga is not an institution dedicated to power. Rather it is one of learning and teaching. For this reason, a single dwarf may not hold executive and authoritative power over the entire clergy; it must be held by a council. i. The council will be led by one of its members. A prophet will be voted on to serve as the representative of the council, when the council's opinion is asked by another institution. ii. The chosen representative can be given the name of high preceptor/prophet/priest. It is up to the council's discretion to decide their own titles depending on the naming convention of the times. iii. Clergy documents and declarations are to be signed as a council. The high preceptor cannot make public declarations without the council. iv. The council is to be composed of preceptors/prophets/heralds (whatever naming convention is used at the time). These council members are to be proposed to the council from the pool of priests or other religious organizations, by a clan leader or member(s) of the council. Then the decision to accept the individual would be up to the council with a 2/3 (rounded up) majority needed to enter the council. v. To remove a member of the council, there would need to be a formal petition by a council member to call for a vote on the matter. For the vote to pass, it would need a 2/3 (rounded up) majority. The member would then be demoted to priest, unless expulsion is required. vi. To expel someone from the clergy the council needs unanimity and at least 4 council members present. vii. The council is to be composed of one prophet per Brathmordakin. Title Two: Duties of Prophets Art.III Prophets are experts on the Brathmordakin, more specifically on their patron. This means that apart from teaching priests about their Brathmordakin they are also expected to be learning and searching beliefs and cultures from all dwarf groups in relation to their Brathmordakin. Art.IV All prophets (including the high prophet) are equal in the council. Art.V All prophets have the ability to sponsor a dwarf to become a priest if they believe they possess the knowledge required. Art.VI The prophets can only remove a priest from the clergy through a vote with an outcome over 2/3 (rounded up) of the council. Reinstating a priest that was removed goes through the same process. Art.VII. Prophets have the right to create organizations and groups if they so desire. However, the responsibility of maintenance is on the shoulders of said prophet. Art VIII. Prophets are to inform priests on matters that the latter does not have a clear answer to. Prophets should only do the duties of priests when there are no priests to fulfill the duties. i. In relation to priests, prophets serve as mentors. Guiding them on how to teach people, hold events, and sermons. Art IX. The high prophet is a ceremonial rank that serves to represent the will of the council outside of itself. The high prophet is just a prophet. i. The high prophet does not have to be a prophet of Yemekar. The prophet(s) of Yemekar fulfill the same duties as any other prophet in relation to their Brathmordakin. Title Three: Duties of Priests Article X. Priests are the teachers of the general dwarven population. They teach the basics of the Brathmordakin to those that are willing to learn. Article XI. Priests have the ability to head ceremonies with the blessings of the council of Prophets. i. By being a priest, one has a de facto ability to do ceremonies. Article XII. A priest can be demoted to acolyte if they show an inability to learn and be aware of different perspectives of the Brathmordakin. Title Four: Relationship with other Religious Orders Article XIII. The clergy recognizes all dwarven denominations that accept the existence of the Brathmordakin and worships them, as well as, keeping the core pillars of the dwarven faith in their denomination. Article XIV. The clergy recognizes the existence of cosmic entities that are not the Brathmordakin. The glorification of these beings is acceptable and tolerated as long as it is done through the lenses of the Brathmordakin and their worship. i. Any glorification of a non-Brathmordakin that does not include the direct or indirect glorification of a/the Brathmordakin as well is considered heretical. Article XV. Any form of Khorvad worship is heretical. Title Five: Amending the Covenant Article XVI. This covenant may only be amended if there is unanimity and minimum four prophets are present. i. Articles as enumerated in this document can only be removed if the entire council agrees upon it. ii. Future articles or amendments need only the condition set in Article XVI Title Six: Decision making of the Council of Prophets Article XVII. As is tradition since times immemorial all members of the council can propose decisions to the Council of Prophets. i. Decisions pass through a simple majority, with at least half of the Prophets of the council being present. ii. The High Prophet needs to be present for a decision to be passed or have another prophet appointed as temporary substitute (by the High Prophet). iii. These council decisions cannot amend the Covenant, only the process layed out in title five can do so. -This Covenant was formed, agreed upon, stamped and signed by the Council of Prophets of Da Kirkja Dverga- High Prophet Garedyn the Green, Prophet of Yemekar Prophet Asketil Blackroot, Prophet of Belka Prophet Dhaen Grandaxe, Prophet of Anbella Prophet Tuzic Mossborn, Prophet of Ogradhad Prophet Alaric Grimgold, Prophet of Dungrimm
  18. The Search for Acolytes [source] [!] A dwarf in green armour goes around different cities pinning things to sign boards. My fellow dwarven people, I Garedyn The Green, following the previous High Prophet Axel Ireheart’s pilgrimage, have been appointed as the interim High Prophet of the Kirkja Dverga, our holy dwarven clergy. Although I may not be as experienced as my predecessors, I believe in the wisdom of my elders and the guiding hand of the Brathmordkin. I hope that with the aid of my fellow prophets that the clergy can be reformed in the coming years, after which I shall graciously step down. However, my vision for a better clergy for all the dwarven people can only be achieved with your aid. All dwarves, no matter their location, no matter their race or clan, are welcomed within our ranks as long as they have a desire to learn and worship The Seven. My goal in life has always been to promote dwarven unity in the name of Yemekar, for we are all his creation. If you share this vision, I welcome you personally to Da Kirkja Dverga. If you are a dwarf looking for guidance in life, we welcome you to Da Kirkja Dverga. If you are a hermit looking to teach the word of the Brathmordkin, we welcome you to Da Kirkja Dverga. Narvok oz Brathmordkin
  19. The Aditean Pantheon An artistic mock-up of a lesser deity pantheon What is the Aditean Pantheon? The Aditean Pantheon are a collection of six lesser-spirits revered as deities by Aditeans, followers of the Pantheon’s chief goddess Aditea who is known as the crystal Queen of Justice. Each of these spirits are merely aspects of already-existing Greater Immoral spirits, not independent deities in themselves. In the Aditean belief, these lesser spirits reflect the teachings of their religion (shown below) and organize around Aditea for the purposes of cohesion and emphasis. However, each of these deities has their own agendas and abilities as well. The Aditean religion also recognizes this, and therefore reveres each deity on their own merit, but still emphasizes the role of Aditea as the overall matriarch of their faith. Aditeanism, or the worship of the Aditean pantheon, is currently a nomadic religion with little formal structure. The Aditeans put great emphasis on personal intuition and enlightenment over formalized dogmas or rituals. Notwithstanding the emphasis on personal revelation, Aditeanism is currently led by a spiritual leader called Adis Penweather, who goes by the title “Crystar Prophet." The Crystar Prophet is exclusively responsible for communicating the will of Aditea and the rest of the pantheon to its followers, while ultimately leading them towards connection with the pantheon and Creation as a whole. Who Are The Aditean Pantheon? Below are descriptions of the six members of the Aditean pantheon. Aditea, Queen of Justice - Lesser aspect of Velkumezt Aditea is the chief of the Aditean pantheon (bearing the title of “Queen”) and represents the ideal of justice. She specifically represents Velkumzet’s emphasis on law, bringing forth justice upon the wicked alike through divine judgments. The Aditeans venerate Aditea as the Queen of the pantheon; whenever a prayer or request is made to any other pantheon member, Aditea is necessarily included. Aditea is called the “crystal queen” for a few reasons. Justice is fundamentally a spiritual concept for the Aditeans. If one’s being is unjust, they are out of tune not simply with Earthly laws, but with divine law. If one is not in tune with Creation’s law, he rebels against reality and becomes a destructive force. Before justice can be obtained, one must seek enlightenment. Crystals, with their numerous natural and reflective properties, help one see hidden things a bit clearer. For this reason, Aditea’s crystalline depiction is said to help the devout perfect themselves on the path towards enlightenment. Aditea is said to manifest in the form of a humanoid made from quartz and other crystals, holding crystal scales in one hand and a mighty crystalline longsword in the other. Aditea is also said to bring justice to evil-doers and protection to the innocent. Exceptionally clear-sighted and even-handed, Aditea is depicted in Aditean myths as a benevolent, kind, yet stern matriarch who demands the best from all those around her - spirit and faithful alike. She is worshiped by rubbing together quartz (or any other crystal) and meditating on her likeness and principles. She can also be connected through meditation, prayer, or bathing in waters blessed by the Crystar Prophet or his underlings. Okal - Patron of Occult Studies - Lesser Aspect of Theruz For the Aditeans, enlightenment is rarely found without an encounter with magic. Magic is viewed as one of the many tools provided by the Pantheon to both study and preserve Creation - both cardinal aims of the Aditean faith. For this purpose, Aditeans petition Okal, the patron deity of occult studies, to aid them in their studies of the arcane arts. Okal is often depicted in Aditean stories as taking the form of a man with a long robe, wearing crystal headband and pointing towards the sky to symbolize enlightenment. He is presented as an intelligent man, teeming with a profound curiosity and a keen awareness of even the most difficult of subject matter. He is worshiped by burning an incense before a book of prayers or spells bearing his name. Dromond - Patron of Physical Fortitude - Lesser Aspect of Leyd The Aditean emphasis on rational enlightenment and mental fortitude does not come at the expense of a strong physical constitution. The Aditeans petition Dromond, their patron deity of strength, to aid them in strengthening their physical bodies, minds, and spirits throughout life. Dromond is depicted as a muscular man with a fist made of fire and two feet with the force to crush the strongest adversary. In Aditean myths, he is depicted as a sometimes hot-headed, but chivalrous man who is willing to defend the weakest amongst him. He can be worshiped by doing mental or physical exercises while invoking his name. Such activities are numerous and up to the creativity of the faithful: physical exercises such as jousting, archery practice, building structures, and so forth. Mental exercises such as reading, word-games, and so forth. Twia - Patron of Joy Amid Conflict - Lesser Aspect of Ublulhar All descendants require hope to steel the will against an internal foe. By calling upon the name of Twia, Aditeans renew their spirits with confidence in their personal journeys. For Aditeans, Twia’s influence is essential in maintaining equilibrium with their emotional states. Too much distress or sadness can overrun any Descendant; the warmth of Twia holds despair at bay. Twia can inspire momentary confidence or long-term hope for a distant goal. In Aditean myths, Twia is depicted as a young lady holding a flower in her hand, radiating divine warmth that manifests as yellow circles flowing off her being. Her very presence is said to cause an otherworldly joy to sweep over all in her presence. She is also seen as a happy-go-lucky woman who never accepts the odds. She can be worshiped by petitioning her and asking her to partition her grace upon the faithful. Pinfin - Lady of Moonlight on Dark Nights - Lesser Aspect of Luara The Moon is one of the grandest wonders of creation. In the darkened night, when dark spawn and other malefactors roam, the moon is the only source of light available. For this reason, the Aditeans pay homage to Pinfin, the lady of the Moon. She is depicted as a woman dressed in purplish-blue robes, her eyes like giant, luminescent moons. She is called upon during especially dark nights for protection, illumination, and balance in the heart of the faithful. She is not written about much in Aditean mythos given her very specific focus. Haldrin - Radiant Lady of Sunlight - Lesser of Aztran Every descendent feels the power of sunlight beaming upon them; even the most frigid of dark spawn cannot escape the sun’s enduring authority. The Aditeans venerate the occurrence of sunlight by acknowledging Haldrin, Radiant Lady of Sunlight. Haldrin, like Pinfin, both play minor roles in the Aditean faith. Haldrin is seen as a symbolic representation of illumination, similar to Pinfin, although Haldrin is called upon for more dire situations. She is depicted as a lady of radiant sunlight in a flowing yellow dress with hair like the sun’s rays. She can be called upon at any time by meditating near a heat source. What do Aditeans Believe? Aditeanism, unlike most religions, does not emphasize a strict dogma. Personal experience and intuition plays a huge part in the faithful Aditean’s relationship with Aditea and the pantheon. Aditeanism does emphasize a baseline of principles, however, which inform the faithful’s personal conduct and their perspective of the world. These principles are only starting points. The faithful are encouraged to use their dynamic potential as Descendants to apply Aditean precepts to every walk of life - innovate them, if need be. The only requirement is to stay true to a few basic narratives. 1. Creation is built on logos (order), and is discernible to most people. Even if this particular thought is unknown to someone, many conduct themselves according to logos. All arts in the world, magical or mundane, are governed by inescapable laws. The very notion of existence itself is governed by inescapable realities: everything grows and perishes. Descendants are finite beings who much operate within Creation’s limits. To go against these principles, as so many do through the perverse arts or other means, is to abuse creation. 2. Justice is the preservation of the logos of creation. Injustice is the abuse of creation. When injustice arises, an Aditean is charged to correct it if possible. If not, exhort Aditea for intercession. Order is not a rigid system or dogma; it is a prerequisite for all life. Order encourages creativity and dynamism, it does not stifle it. The orderly must grow in their knowledge lest they lose sight of Creation and, consequently, forsake order. 3. Enlightenment (knowledge of Creation) is essential to an Aditean. Without order, there is no justice. Without justice, there is chaos, decay, and destruction. An Aditean can only get to justice by first achieving enlightenment. As such, the magical and esoteric arts are encouraged, so long as they do not derive from Creation abuse (no dark arts of any sort). The void, contrary to many other faiths, is seen as a vast well of potential gifted to descendants by creation, not a corrupting force in the world. 4. Creation’s subjects, such as the innocent, demand the protection of all just men. Aditeans seek to protect the innocent whenever and wherever they can, provided they can do so with no great risk of danger to themselves. 5. The Aditean pantheon are spiritual models for Aditeans to reflect. They are not vindictive or vengeful deities that seek total compliance; rather, they are guides that seek to help descendants reach their full potential - within the confines of order. 6. Order without justice is tyranny; justice without order is incoherent chaos. Order is the foundation of justice, but justice is a higher principle than order. Put in other terms: order is the means of obtaining justice. 7. The prophets and priests of the faith are only guides. It is believed they are highly attuned to the Pantheon, yet they are still growing themselves. Intuition and personal relationship with the Gods is the pathway to living a just life. 8. Converting others to the faith is encouraged, but it must happen within the bounds of justice. Any attempt to convert by force is shunned and will result in immediate “trial” before the Crysar Prophet. Practices Aditeans are encouraged to study texts of all sorts as part of their faith to Aditea and the pantheon. There is no single “text” for the Aditean faith. Rather, stories are passed down through oral tradition and the notes and meditations of earlier priests/prophets of the faith. Aditeans routinely pray, fast, perform good deeds, and evangelize the messages of the Pantheon to newcomers. The number of meditations and rituals are numerous and normally specific to particular deities. Generally, however, Aditeans sit near a figurine or a symbol of the chosen deity and reflect upon it in silence. It is believed that the Gods hear the innermost reflections of one’s heart, so in essence they are holding a silent conversation with the Pantheon. Crystals, torches, staves, and other items can be used to enhance one’s worshiping experience. Aditeans have “temple” where a priest/prophet will deliver sermons, impart wisdom upon the faithful, and answer questions en masse. “Temple” can be unorthodox, however; ranging from diverse topics such as the esoteric arts, the nature of reality, the role of religion in man’s thinking, to more theological topics like the role of justice in faith, the desires of the pantheon, and so forth. Temple reflects the constant Aditean push towards enlightenment, rather than lowly indoctrination or dogma. Other than temple, the only other formal gathering observed by Aditeans is “court.” Court, playing on Aditeanism’s themes of justice, law, and order, is called for one of two purposes: A. a violator of justice is caught by an Aditean faithful in the course of their life, and brought captive to an Aditean settlement. B. An Aditean violates one of the tenets of the faith by going against justice. This “court” is overseen by the Crystar Prophet and only him, to limit the amount of political bias present in the process. The Crystar Prophet engages in an inquisitive process throughout the entire session. Should he decide the accused violated the divine Law in accordance with the Aditean faith, he will issue a proper punishment. Death or execution are reserved for the worst of the worst; those who corrupt Creation with dark magics, or who murder innocents, and so forth. Most punishments are relatively minor or rehabilitative, rather than destructive. Conversion Converting to Aditeanism is remarkably easy. A willing convert must seek our a priest or the Crystar Prophet and swear a simple oath before him: I will be a just and enlightened being, in service to the preservation of Creation’s law of justice, and a servant of it’s patron Aditea. May my actions conform forever to my words.” After uttering that phrase, a priest or the Crystar Prophet will bless the convert before Aditea and thus officially initiate them into the faith. Join the Aditean faith today! Wield the crystal sword of justice and pursue enlightenment for the betterment of our world!
  20. THE TEMPLE OF THE ENTWINED STAR GOD The Slumbering One, "The Glodites" The Prayer of the Slumbering God "But the Dream, and the Slumber." [!] Strange Posters, Letters, and Pamphlets would be thrown about the poorer slums of Almaris. ============================================================================================================== Greetings Dreamer, Long have WE watched you sleep. Unaware of the reality of which blankets you, and clouds your vision. Praising false Gods such as the canonist "Creator", the "Brathmordakin", and the "Aspects". The Aenguls and Daemons you so fear are but mere illusions, aspects cast by the Slumbering God. Have you ever felt their watchful gaze, as you sleep? The eyes are always watching, Dreamer. The Slumbering God has begun to awake, and their power can be felt all throughout the realities. His chosen champion, Glod Grimgold, has manifested in this reality as his "living aspect". Everyday, our spells grow stronger. Now, it is time we reveal ourselves to the world. If you wish to join our Temple, you must prove your loyalty. The youth of Almaris are unguarded. They walk the streets without guardians. Babies are left in cribs, in unlocked rooms. Take these sacrifices, and slay them. Their blood will mark your initiation into the Temple as an Acolyte. If one is unavailable, the sacrifice of a Canonist Priest, Brathmordakin Forgeguard, Druid, or Paladin will suffice. Do not feel this is an impossible task - work in the shadows, and slaughter those who work against the Dreamer. Seek out the book known as "The Chronicles of Glod" to begin your path to enlightenment. To show you apart of our powers, the back of this note will include a single spell from our Arcanium. Once you feel the gaze of our Lord, you will know you have become a true "Glodite", and have entered our rank as an Acolyte. ============================================================================================================== MYSTERIUM SOMNIUM ARCANUS ____________________________________________________________________ __________________████____████________████____██████________________ __________________████____████________████____██████________________ ______________________████████████████████████______________________ ______________________████████████████████████______________________ __________██▓▓____██▓▓████░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░████▓▓████____████________ __________██▓▓____████████░░░░░░░░░░░░░░__██████████____████________ __________░░░░▓▓▓▓░░░░░░░░░░░░▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓░░░░░░░░░░░░▒▒▓▓▓▓░░__________ ________░░░░░░████░░░░░░░░░░░░▓▓▓▓▓▓██░░░░░░░░░░░░░░████░░░░░░______ __████__░░██▓▓░░░░░░░░____████░░__████████____░░__░░░░░░████░░__████ __████____██▓▓░░░░░░░░____██▓▓░░__████▓▓██____░░__░░░░░░████░░__████ ______████░░░░____░░__░░░░██▓▓████████▓▓▓▓░░░░░░__░░░░__░░░░████____ ______████░░______________██▓▓████████▓▓██______________░░░░████____ ________░░▓▓▒▒______________░░▓▓▓▓▓▓██__________________████________ __________██▓▓________________▓▓▓▓▓▓██__________________████________ ____________░░████__________________________________████____________ ______________████__________________________________████____________ __________________████████__░░░░░░░░░░░░░░██████████________________ __________________████████░░░░░░░░░░░░░░__██████████________________ __________________________████████████████__________________________ __________________________████████████████__________________________ MYSTERIES OF DREAMING ARCANE
  21. Almarism What is Almarism? Almarism is the most recent incarnation of an ancient religion dedicated to worshiping and protecting the goddess Almar, the so-called "Lady of the Lake." This ancient religion was founded millennia ago, at the very dawn of Almaris' creation, by the first people of Almaris. Its history and tenets are recorded in the Book of the Lake, an ancient fragmented text discovered in a hidden cavern near the Lady's Lake (Eye of the Lady). Modern-day Almarism is the state religion of Redclyf, whose rulers and citizens alike are called to pledge their loyalty and service to the Lady. The spiritual head of Almarism is the Fey Enchantress, who communicates Almar’s words and actions to us through dream-walking in Almar’s sleep. Who is Almar? Almar, Lady of the Lake Almar is the ancient goddess responsible for the creation of the nine realms. Originally part of the prehistoric pantheon of Old Ones, Almar broke away from the old gods when they became no longer content to rule the cosmos and instead began to feed on it. A goddess of life and creation, Almar stood against the Old Ones in an ultimate defense of light and life. Who are the Old Ones? The Old Ones are the progenitors of life and death in this world. Their pantheon is composed of at least nine gods: Aeg, Asul, Anth, Athe, Vail, Axi, Atla, Arc, and Almar. More may exist, but their names are lost or indecipherable in the fragmented text of the Book of the Lake. How did Almar create the nine realms? Long before the realms we know today were created, the Old Ones ruled over many ancient realms. One day, however, the god of death, Aeg, became no longer content to feed on those who died in the ancient realms he ruled over. He became possessed with an unquenchable craving and began to consume worlds upon worlds. The Old Ones stood against him, but they too fell and were consumed by Aeg, emerging as new gods of death, sharing in his eternal hunger. Only one Old One remained - Almar, the great Mother-spirit, goddess of life and nature. Her nature was so opposed to Aeg that he could not consume her, and so their two wills locked into an unceasing battle. Fearlessly, she struggled against him for eons, the force of their wills striving against each other shaking the very stars. But this battle commanded so much of her attention that she could do nothing as the rest of the gods ate up world after world until none was left. But still Almar battled on, and once every world was devoured, the Old Ones turned their attention back to her, preparing to overwhelm her and utterly annihilate her. Aeg devours the cosmos It was here, in this moment of desperate determination, where Almar finally called on her true power and realized how to defeat the Old Ones. She could not destroy the Old Ones, for she is the goddess of life, and they of death, and they thus held more power to destroy than she did. Therefore, no longer did Almar seek to destroy Aeg; instead, she called upon her powers of life and defeated the gods of death and decay in a single ultimate act of creation. Stretching out her hand, Almar called matter into existence, creating new worlds and locking each god into a world-prison of earth and stone - a continent designed to hold them fast for eons more. Aegis, Asulon, Anthos, Athera, Vailor, Axios, Atlas, Arcas - instead of the gods devouring worlds, these new worlds now devoured the Old Ones, drawing them down deep into their bellies. And where Almar touched each realm, life sprang into existence, bountiful nature covering each of those stone prisons in verdant splendor. There the Old Ones remain to this day, clawing at the dirt above heir heads, destined one day to break free and once more terrorize the realms. How did Almaris come to be? When Almar had finished binding the gods in their prisons, a great sleep fell upon her, for the eons of struggling against Aeg and the Old Ones had brought her to the brink of death. Almar laid her head down and fell asleep, and where her head lay, bountiful life again sprang up all around her. A newborn realm dawned around her - the land of Almaris. The curves of her body became green mountains and hills, and her hair became great pastures of green grass. The Creation of Almaris One great eye closed in slumber, but even as she slept, one eye remained open, ever watchful of the return of the Old Ones. And where that eye stared up at the heavens, it became a brilliant blue lake. There her new creations, the first people of Almaris, gathered to settle, guarding the Lady of the Lake vigilantly even as her eye vigilantly watches the sky. It was here that they wrote of her battle against the Old Ones in the Book of the Lake, and even once they passed on and became extinct, their writing remained, waiting to be rediscovered, waiting for a new generation of Almarists to rise up and settle around the Lady's Lake: a new order of Almarists once again dedicated to defending the Lady as she sleeps, even as she once defended their ancestors. What is the Sisterhood of the Lake? Foremost among the followers of Almar is the Sisterhood of the Lake, an order of priestesses dedicated to ensuring Almarist devotion to the Lady. The Sisterhood shares the load of responsibility amongst them, taking turns to lead ceremonies, plan religious festivals, induct citizens into Almarism, and tend to the needs of the Fey Enchantress. Any woman may volunteer as a Sister of the Lake, provided that they are sincerely dedicated to the protection of Almar and her people, and that they are not denied entrance by either the Fey Enchantress or the Duke of Redclyf. Who is the Fey Enchantress? The Fey Enchantress is a highly respected prophetess among Almarists. One pure of heart, the Fey Enchantress is chosen by the servants of the Lady, with the Lady’s guidance. The Enchantress possesses the unique ability to communicate with Almar herself in her dreams. When she lays down to sleep, her purity of soul causes the Lady’s dreams to interweave with the Enchantress’ own dreams. Through these dreams, the Enchantress can gain insight into Almar’s thoughts and desires. In order to prevent harmful misinterpretation of her dreams, however, the Enchantress is not tasked with both dreaming and interpreting. Before communicating her dream to Almar’s leaders and people, the Enchantress first convenes with a rotating cast of two Sisters, who listen to the Enchantress’ words and help her to distill the essence of the dream. Following that, it is then told to the Duke and his advisors, as well as to the people of Redclyf, if the Enchantress and Duke deem it worthy to be announced. What is the chief purpose of Almarism? The Book of the Lake speaks of the inevitable return of the Old Ones. Their prison-realms cannot hold them forever, for all life gives way to death. On that day, when the Old Ones break free of their prisons, they will once again converge on Almar with murder and destruction in their hearts, seeking to destroy her and devour all of reality, and then each other. If the Lady is blinded or crippled before that day, then she will not be woken until it is too late, and both she and all of Almaris will perish. Thus, it is the primary purpose of every Almarist to guard the eye of the Lady, so that she may be roused from her slumber by the coming of the Old Ones and may rise to defend Almaris. Why should I convert to Almarism? Almarism is not a "faith," unlike Canonism or the Red Faith. It does not demand a personal belief from its followers, does not impose a creed on its subjects, threatening excommunication and execution for violating its directives. There are no laundry lists of rules, no tomes of thousands of pages of arbitrary theology, ranks of religious leaders jockeying for power and political favor. Almarism is a single, strong call amidst the chaos of this world, welcoming to all, its message ringing true and clear above the strident screeches of death and damnation from other religions. Almarism is not a "faith;" rather, it is a duty. Its single principle is this: "Protect the Lady of the Lake." Whether you believe in a hundred other gods or none at all, you have a place in Redclyf, guarding the Eye of the Lady. Whether you think her a goddess or a mortal, so long as you raise a sword against those who attempt to destroy the Eye of the Lady, you are as family to those of Redclyf, from the humblest Sister of the Lake to the Duke of Redclyf himself. Guard the Eye of the Lady! Move to Redclyf today!
  22. ~* A Story of Destruction *~ Age of Expansion The creation of Knox allowed Billy Bob to enter another age of relaxation, turning his attention once again to his private affairs and hobbies. As time went on he was able to take a more relaxed position in the world, travelling out less and less as the years went on. This laidback behavior was what allowed the problem to spread so rapidly without being noticed. Knox had been created to defend the Halflings; however, Knox was so good at his job that it in turn gave the wee-folk an unfair advantage in the world and allowed them to spread rapidly. Halfling settlements eventually popped up all over as their population increased exponentially in a way that had never been seen before and has never been seen since. Knox viciously defended these villages, eventually earning a reputation as a serial killer that many bigguns still associate with him to this day as he struck down bigguns with his scythe over and over again. However, while the world outside these communities may have seen him as an evil creature bringing death wherever he went, the wee-folk of the world came to know him more and more as the protector of their people and way of life as he killed in defense of them. The Halflings thrived during this age, multiple cultures and societies sprouting up all over. However, in creating a guardian of the wee-folk Billy Bob had in turn created an unfair advantage. Allowing the wee to spread unchecked was problematic, and many of the societies that were forming were not what he had in mind for them when he grew them all those years ago. As rich and diverse as these cultures were, many Halflings were going against their nature in order to form them and were not living the life they were meant to. A Discovery It was on one of Billy Bob’s trips that he first started to notice this, coming across a city of Halflings who had grown into a nation that could rival it’s human counterparts. Mina were being used, weapons of all kinds were being taken up, shoes were being worn, and worse of all they had shunned their traditional burrows in place for walled cities and biggun buildings. Nothing about this place was what he had expected and it shocked him, realizing that gifting them Knox had allowed this to happen. Returning home he spent weeks mulling over what to do, not wanting to simply take Knox away from them as it would cause the Halflings to be massacred in mass by the other races. Instead, he opted to create a counterpart. A Creation Once again Billy Bob found himself entering his personal gardens to grow something new for the first time in centuries. Heading to the stream behind his cottage where he grew various water based plants he bent down and labored extensively to create something to one again fix the balance he had disrupted. Using the roots of lily-pads he created 10 tentacles that stretched off into oblivion, from the river rocks he created a giant beak, and from the mud itself he created a head to which attach it all. In doing so Billy Bob gave Arugula life, a giant squid with the power to destroy entire Halfling villages, settlements, and even cities and drag them into the ocean’s depths. Which is exactly what it went on to do. Age of Destruction For the next few years the Halfling population diminished as Arugula would show up at Halfling settlements that had lost their way and dragged them into the ocean depths to never be seen again. Knox did his best to defend these places but as designed Arugula would show up and drag their homes away so quickly the deity would not have time to get there and defend them. It seemed to the wee-folk at first that they were doomed; however, after a few years and the majority of the settlements that had gone against their original design had been wiped out these constant attacks by the squid came less and less as the remaining wee-folk returned to their life as simple farmers. Eventually they all but stopped for the most part, the stories fading into legends told to children to get them to behave and not stray from properness. Thus ends this story of destruction, Knox still watching over the wee-folks while Arugula always lingers in the depths right out of sight, waiting to drag any Halflings who have strayed from their path into the murky depths below. ((Like my previous post this is just some more expanded religious lore for Halflings))
  23. ~* A Story of Creation *~ The First Age Golden wheat fields, growing as far as the eye could see were all that made up the world in the beginning. Billy Bob, the first man, tended to these fields and as time went on he was able to use his knowledge to start growing more and more. It was not long before cabbage, carrots, potatoes, beetroot, and every other vegetable one can imagine could be found in tidy little rows stretching into the horizon. Each one given so much attention and love that having one perish before it’s time was unheard of. Days stretched into weeks, and weeks into years as he worked, back-breaking labor giving rise to more and more flora and soon the earth was covered in the diverse landscape we know today. Trees of all sorts thrived, flowers turned the land into a majestic painting, and herbs grew all over that Billy Bob used to create wonderful dishes for himself. The Second Age These centuries were peaceful, with the deity travelling around and admiring his creations, but never wavering in his dedication to caring for them. It was not long after that he grew content with his work with the plants of the world and he decided to turn his attention elsewhere. The world, while beautiful, was quiet. This is when he tried his hand at growing more sentient life, in his gardens he started to grow the fauna of the world. Billy Bob filled the waterways with marine life, planting them on lily pads to float away into the oceans and rivers until old enough to break free on their own. For the air he grew birds from dandelion seeds to fill the earth with song, blowing them into the air and giving them life with his own breath. And for the land, emerging from flowers in every corner of the earth came creatures that would roam it’s forests, deserts, tundras, and everything in between. This too went on for years, as the farmer travelled to and fro creating the creatures that still inhabit the lands, seas, and skys to this day. The Third Age In creating the animals Billy Bob thus created a self-sustaining cycle, creatures feasting upon the plants and going on to seed other areas, animals dying which would then go on to fertilize the plants that would feed the other animals. For the first time since his creation the creator was able to take some time off, thus came the first true age of relaxation. He used this time to work on more personal pursuits: learning to create furniture, to smith tools and weapons, how to use the herbs he had grown to create magical alchemical potions, how to use the animals he created to help him with his chores, and lastly how to use both of his creations to cook up the best dishes that the world had ever, and will ever see. It was not long before he was creating grand feasts for himself which he would eat on a long dining table he had built himself. Yet, there was still one thing missing. The Fourth Age While the earth was now teeming with life and full of sound, Billy Bob found himself wishing to share his creations with someone who could appreciate them the same way he could and so he turned his attention to the last of his great tasks. The creation of intelligent life. Strolling out into his personal gardens he began his work. ~*~ “From sage oi crea’e yeh ‘umans, wise an’ s’rong yeh s’all covah teh eart’ in yer multitudes. Howeveh, yer conques’ shall cause yeh ter ‘ave shor’ lives as yeh perish in yeh ques’ fer expansion. From Orchids oi crea’e yeh elves, long lastin’ an’ forevah beautiful. Yeh s’all live fer years an’ covah teh world in ar’, bu’ yeh children will beh few an’ far between. From vines oi crea’e yeh dwarves, hardeh an’ clevah yeh s’all t’rive w’erevah yeh are plan’ed. ‘owevah, yer greed s’all cause yeh ter s’rangle yerselves as yeh move abou’ searchin’ fer teh worlds treasures. From teh cac’us oi crea’e yeh orcs, may yeh grow in teh toughes’ condi’ions an’ spi’ in teh face of deat’. ‘owevah, because of teh pain yeh s’all cause othahs yeh will always beh fightin’ t’em off. An’ las’leh, from teh whea’ i’self oi grow yeh Halflin’s. Small bu’ pure of hear’ yeh s’all tend ter teh land an’ i’ s’all love yeh, bu’ yeh will always beh used by t’ose more powahful fer t’eir own pursui’s.” ~*~ From these plants sprouted the descendants, who then spread themselves to all four corners of the land. No longer lonely, Billy Bob now had friends to share his majestic feasts with and he was happy. Each race going on to create homes, nations, and societies for themselves and each falling into the curses he had bestowed upon them. Billy Bob continued to watch over his garden, the world thriving with the life he had created. The Creation of a Savior However, it was not long before he noticed a problem amongst the smallest of them. While he had known the Halflings would be used by others, keeping towns and cities well fed with the produce of their fields, he did not expect the violence that they would experience as well. While on one of his travels he passed through a small Halfling shire he found the residents there being picked on by a group composed of elves, humans, dwarves, and orcs. Angered that they would take advantage of the wee-folk in such a manner, Billy Bob gave life to one of the scarecrows in the Halfling’s fields. In doing so he created Knox himself, a deity unto itself who would serve as the Halfling’s protector and guide from now into the future. Thus is the creation of the world, Billy Bob to this day nourishing it’s residents with regular gifts of taters to keep us going in times of duress. Each race filling the niche they had been created for and all the while Knox watches over the smallest among them. ((This is simply to serve as expanded Halfling religious lore for the community to interact and play with))
  24. The Vigilants Vigilants serve as the priests and priestesses of Wyrvun. Drawn from the ranks of the faithful, they are the standard bearers of Isvinity, and fulfill a number of vital roles. Clad in cloaks of fur with scale-mail pauldrons, the most identifying feature of the Vigilants are the twisted, silver draconic horns forming a circlet upon their head, reminiscent of a wyvern. Most cloaks are brown, black, and grey, with white reserved for Archvigilants. Though often covered, the skin of a Vigilant is thoroughly and systematically scarred, particularly upon the arms, legs, and abdomen. Hierarchy A fully fledged Vigilant is bound to one of the four wayshrines, following the Path of Birth, Peace, War, or Death. Though they are not limited in the performance of duties at other wayshrines, their particular path allows them to focus on one aspect of their faith - a necessary feat, given the distance between wayshrines, which necessitates a delegation of important duties. From their path, the Vigilant assumes a moniker - a value or attribute related to their wayshrine. Among their own, Vigilants often call each other only by such monikers. Examples for Birth include Creation and Rebirth; for Peace, Wisdom and Serenity; for War, Strength and Agility; for Death, Reverence and Martyrdom. The Vigilant is tasked to excel in or represent this value above all others, serving as an example and counsel for the faithful. It is only through these values that a descendant can pass the ultimate test and survive the harsh climate of Fin’hesin - for to draw upon another deity is sacrilege, and to wield the void is to introduce chaos and sacrifice one’s own health. There are no shortcuts in survival. Rising above the Vigilants are the Archvigilants, one for each wayshrine - the Archvigilants of Birth, Peace, War, and Death - known primarily by their new path monikers and secondarily by their original ones. They hold dominion over their respective wayshrine and the Vigilants bound to it, including the ability to raise a novitiate of their path to full Vigilance, and together their council serves as the source of religious authority. From their ranks is selected a High Vigilant in agreement between the Archvigilants and prince, and the holder of this post maintains their status as Archvigilant. The High Vigilant advises the prince upon matters of religion; decision-making remains the realm of all four Archvigilants, though the High Vigilant may break a tied vote when they arrive at an impasse. Fresh Archvigilants are proposed by the High Vigilant and confirmed by their Archvigilant peers, with input from the prince. The prince, or princess, holds a peculiar status within the Vigilants. Their Vigilance is customary, but through divine right, they reign above even the High Vigilant. The alternative - a High Vigilant subservient to the prince in matters of politics, but a prince subservient to a High Vigilant in matters of religion - would be severely destabilizing. Thus, the prince takes precedence, but it is tradition for the reigning monarch to be uninvolved. Part of none of the Paths, the monarch may select any moniker, which then becomes divorced from the hierarchy for its duration. The participation of the prince in the affairs of Isvinity is a rare thing, for it represents a destabilizing effect upon the balance of the four Paths. Thus, royal intervention is a rarity, permitted only by extraordinary circumstances. Anything more is frowned upon. Relics In their capacity as Archvigilants, each is granted a relic, to be passed on to their successors upon death or abdication. These are the Breath of Isvin, Eyes of Isvin, Claw of Isvin, and Voice of Isvin. The Breath of Isvin is a lantern, and is held by the Archvigilant of Birth. This lantern is the tool through which the Vigilants transfer the sacred fire of their offerings from the Wayshrines. Fire drawn from the Wayshrine of Birth is used for the Cleansing Ritual and to light the hearths of the sick, and fire drawn from the Wayshrine of War is often used to light forges for weaponsmithing. Fire is light, and its spread makes things anew. Thus, it falls to the domain of Birth. The Eyes of Isvin are a ring of keys, held by the Archvigilant of Peace. These keys grant access to the Vigilants’ accumulated knowledge, buried in a library beneath the crypts. It is guarded jealously, for written knowledge is a rare and precious thing among the Snow Elves, and access may only be granted by the Archvigilant of Peace. Knowledge is fuel for the mind, and thus the keys fall under the domain of Peace. The Claw of Isvin is a glaive, held by the Archvigilant of War. This finely crafted weapon aids War in their primary task, being the physical protection of Fin’hesin from threats divine and mortal alike. From deific creatures to deific and voidal mages, it is only fitting that the embodiment of War wields for their relic a weapon. The Voice of Isvin is a horn, held by the Archvigilant of Death. Carved from a dragon’s horn, this instrument’s low tone is used for several purposes. One lengthy blast is sounded at the end of funerals to herald the coming of a new soul to Wyrvun, to be judged. Two blasts call for Conclave among the Vigilants. Three blasts sound an emergency or crisis relevant to the Vigilants. Other Vigilants may create and hold lesser relics representative of their monikers, to be held upon their death or abdication until a new Vigilant takes up their mantle. Novitiate Trials Before one ascends to full Vigilance, they must pass a series of trials, and until such a time are known as a Novitiate. These trials are to ensure that an aspiring Vigilant possesses the qualities necessary to serve Wyrvun. The first four center around each wayshrine, and are administered by a designated Vigilant. The final trial is based upon the moniker and path they select, and is overseen by their respective Archvigilant. The first trial is that of Birth, and its purpose is to test a Novitiate’s ability to nurture - for the Vigilants are tasked with nurturing faith among the Mali’fenn and protecting the fauna of Fin’hesin. Like many among the Mali, Vigilants use animal companions to send letters across vast distances. Often, though not necessarily, these are birds. The task in this trial is for a Vigilant to find a baby animal of their choice and raise it as their courier, to deliver their letters, share a bond, and perform other necessary tasks. The second trial is that of Peace, and its purpose is to test a Novitiate’s intelligence and wisdom, as they must provide counsel in life and an account to Wyrvun upon death. They will select a foreign group - often another nation, settlement, or religious order - and spend time among them. Taking a book, they will learn all they can of these people and record the knowledge, testing their ability to compile information and exercise charisma. When done, the novitiate will return home and pass the book on to the Vigilants. Just as Wyrvun is regarded as the Aengul of Wisdom, so too do the Vigilants aspire to wisdom, and that cannot be gained without knowledge. The knowledge within grants the Vigilants the added benefit of serving as a threat register of the other descendants to Fin’hesin, with whose protection they are tasked. The third trial is that of War, and its purpose is to test physical prowess. In their role as protectors, Vigilants must have strength, agility, and vitality. Thus, the novitiate is sent into the wilderness with nothing. They must craft an appropriate weapon, learn to survive in the harsh lands of Fin’hesin, and return with the pelt of some of the region’s big game. These include a bear, elk, boar, snow leopard, or direwolf. The fourth trial is that of Death, and its purpose is to test a Novitiate when pushed to its brink - as only then can they understand the fate of their ancestors, their god, and what awaits them after life. The Novitiate is tasked with bathing in a frozen lake for as long as they can. In time, the cold will take them, and they will begin to slip away. Only then will they understand the potency of the Deep Cold, and it is only on the verge of freezing that one can feel the embrace of death - the call to sleep - and still recover. When the Novitiate passes out, they will be pulled from the water, and made to relate their experiences on the brink. Before the fifth and final trial, a Novitiate is to choose a path - Birth, Peace, War, or Death. From the wayshrine they choose, they are to assume their moniker - a value or aspect derived from their wayshrine, and define it. Depending on which moniker they choose, their new Archvigilant will provide them with a trial to test that specific virtue, for by taking it as a moniker they are tasked with embodying it. Upon the completion of this trial, the Novitiate will ascend to full Vigilance. Roles The roles of the Vigilants are numerous, from ceremony and counsel to secret ritual. As guides of the faithful, it is the duty of Vigilants to teach the Snow Elves of Isvinity - from Wyrvun and the realms to behaviors and the processes of worship. Further, however, some may try to spread Isvinity to others who dwell within Fin’hesin, for their worship of foreign gods in Wyrvun’s land is unacceptable, and their spirits shall be held by Wyrvun regardless. Conversions of those outside of Fin’hesin - devotees of the winter season - are also not unheard of. In these capacities of teaching, they are also to provide counsel to those seeking their wisdom, particularly in relation to their moniker - upon whose value they are the authority. In relation to the public, Vigilants also preside over ceremonies and aid in the process of offerings. Outside of public view, they are accorded tasks of their own. One of the primary missions of a Vigilant is to guard and maintain the wayshrines, particularly that whose path they follow. Their attachment to Wyrvun sees them make offerings more than the typical Snow Elf. In regards to the replenishment of their ranks, a Vigilant may also be tasked with overseeing the trials of a novitiate. Lastly, the Vigilants serve as the ever-watchful protectors of Fin’hesin and servants of Wyrvun. In the former task, they scout and guard the lands of Fin’hesin, seeking to purge the region of evil deific creatures, the influences of foreign gods, and the chaotic forces of the void - thus placing Vigilants in opposition to deific and voidal practitioners of magic alike. Further, they engage in divination - a process through which signs are interpreted as messages from Wyrvun. From the weather, they draw broad implications, while from dreams come visions of a more personal scope. The final duties of the Vigilants are Cleansing and Blooding - the latter being a secret, sacred ritual. Though a Vigilant may perform any of these tasks, the different Paths hold primary responsibility for many of them. Path of Birth The primary responsibilities of the Path of Birth are that of charity, purity, pilgrimages, births, comings of age, marriages, and Cleansings. To be a Vigilant upon the Path of Birth is to nurture and treasure life. Vigilants of this strain often perform acts of charity. Further, they pay special attention to the sick, and often the Archvigilant of Birth will ensure offering fire from the Wayshrine of Birth is transferred to the hearths of the ill. Encouragement and guidance for those intending on pilgrimage also falls to Birth, for their Wayshrine is the first step on this path. Vigilants of Birth often preside over the ceremonies of birth, coming of age, and marriages - along with the ritual of Cleansing. Lastly, they are charged with the maintenance and protection of the Wayshrine of Birth. Path of Peace The primary responsibilities of the Path of Peace are that of teaching, spreading Isvinity, keeping knowledge, and counseling. Vigilants of Peace are keen to teach the faithful of Isvinity’s tenets, informing them of religious doctrine, beliefs, how to conduct offerings, and other facts central to the faith. In this capacity, they often serve as counselors. Many faithful take their problems to the Vigilants for consultation, and it is typically Vigilants of Peace that leap at the opportunity to guide. In addition, Vigilants of this path serve as the keepers of the Vigilants’ knowledge - their written works held sacred due to the rarity of ancient writings among the ‘fenn. Lastly, Vigilants of this path seek to prosthelytize. The conversion of settlers upon Fin’hesin is a long-held goal, and some even seek converts among devotees of the winter season within Fin’mirak - far outside of Fin’hesin. Lastly, they are charged with the maintenance and protection of the Wayshrine of Peace. Path of War The primary responsibilities of the Path of War are the physical protection of Fin’hesin, the fighting of monsters and mages, oaths, Stormcalling, and Battlepainting. Vigilants of War are the militant arm of Isvinity. Though this is not exclusive to them, it is their speciality. They seek to root out evil, foreign deities, and voidal influence upon the lands of Fin’hesin. Many wield weapons of thanhium, which obstructs voidal mages. In addition to these duties, they oversee oaths and the ceremonies of Stormcalling and Battlepainting. Lastly, they are charged with the maintenance and protection of the Wayshrine of War. Path of Death The primary responsibilities of the Path of Death are keeping the dead, funerals, divination, and Blooding. Vigilants of Death serve as the most mystical side of Isvinity. Often, they pass their time in meditation upon the dead, whom they are charged to protect within the crypts. They preside over the funeral ceremony and the Blooding ritual. Further, divination falls to the Path of Death, for these Vigilants bridge the link between Fin’ciwn and Fin’cuith - lending them particular insight in interpreting Wyrvun’s signs. Lastly, they are charged with the maintenance and protection of the Wayshrine of Death. Conclave Conclave is the gathering of all Vigilants, held in the crypts before the Wayshrine of Death. It occurs both on a periodic basis and as-needed, called by the Archvigilants and signaled by two blasts from the Voice of Isvin. In Conclave, the Vigilants may cover a number of topics. Changes to the hierarchy are a common one - with introductions given to new Vigilants and new Archvigilants, and the passing of relics and duties from the old to the new. Further, they catch up on recent happenings - past ceremonies and current events among them. Additionally, they plan for such events, planning and assigning Vigilants to attend upcoming ceremonies and festivals. One of their most important tasks in Conclave is to monitor the wellbeing of Wayshrines, Fin’hesin, and the state of the Isvin faith. Perhaps their most conflictive role, however, is the debate of religious doctrine and politics. It is in Conclave that official stances of the Vigilants on proper beliefs and conduct are established. Further, it is in Conclave that the intersection of religion and politics is discussed. While the Vigilants may hold opinions on what should and should not be law, and on what political course their state should pursue, such decisions fall to the prince and his council. The High Vigilant has a place upon this council, and so it is through Conclave that the High Vigilant’s stances and requests upon the council are often determined. Beyond these periodic meetings, and perhaps most importantly, Conclave may be called for crises and emergencies. A corruption of Fin’hesin, war, or an uptick in combative encounters with beasts or mages may warrant a Conclave to chart a course of action. Divination Divination stems from two sources - the weather and dreams. Just as Wyrvun rules of Fin’hesin and the Deep Cold, so can he shape it to make known his will. Manifestations with broad implications occur in the weather. Further, as Aengul of Sleep, he holds influence over dreams - though such meanings are often personal and thus more limited in scope. Weather Divination Shooting stars and meteor showers are thought to be the reflection of a soul returning from Fin’ciwn to Fin’cuith, as the light of the moon plays against the lakes of the land and mirrors the journey into the night sky. The polar light display known as elanah'sul is considered to be the opposite: a stream of souls making the journey from Fin’cuith to Fin’ciwn. Comets are often seen as omens of significant change, acting as a sign of drastic alterations to the status quo. Due to the rarity of these events, sky gazers will not often focus their attention on searching for this rare phenomenon, but rather allow it to be noticed by coincidence. The nature of this change will often be up to interpretation as to whether this change is one to be feared, such as the Cataclysms. The Mali'fenn are often viewed as isolationists, even by Wyrvun himself. Because of this they often find themselves forced into a defensive position within their home. Blizzards are often believed to be an extension of Wyrvun's influence in Fin'hesin, designed to mitigate the strength of the threat. Most likely these threats are mortal in nature, but on occasion it can be interpreted that these blizzards are to drive out insidious foes of the supernatural kind. In contrast to the battering nature of a blizzard, a soft snowfall will often be viewed as a common blessing for the Fennic people. A sign of good faith and the prosperity of things to come is often what is associated with freshly lain blankets of snow. Thundersnow is a rare occurrence where, despite the freezing climate, thunder and lightning still occur. This is seen as unintentional backlash by Wyrvun as he engages in some form of divine conflict - defending Fin’ciwn from divine interlopers. Due to his connection to Fin'hesin, his interactions with other divine beings can spill out, causing phenomena such as thundersnow. Seeing how Wyrvun often uses Fin'hesin as a way to communicate with the Mali'fenn, it stands to reason that he would offer his distaste and anger through it as well. Hail is often a sign of this anger, and with it can predict poor harvests and livestock troubles. While there are many reasons as to why Wyrvun might be angry, it is undebated as to the fact that hail is meant to act as a form of punishment for the Mali'fenn. Sunny skies and warm weather often spell troubling times for Wyrvun as his lack of strength echoes through the warmer weather. When these times occur it can be expected that Wyrvun will be unable to lend any assistance for quite some time, at least not until his strength has returned. A red sky is one of the rarest phenomena to occur in Fin'hesin and often spells troubling times ahead. Most often it is a sign that blood will be spilled in the days to come, but often it is hard to tell if the blood will be Fennic in nature or foreign. A red sky can frequently be associated with a coming battle or a treachery that has occured. Rainbows are a beautiful sight to see in the northern lands, and as such forecast peaceful times to come. This peace can be felt in either the weather, in politics, inside oneself, or even domestically. Sometimes this omen can be for all of the Mali'fenn, or sometimes it is to be interpreted as a sign for a single individual. Similar to hail, Wyrvun can show his pride in his followers' actions by presenting them with a moon halo, a sign of plentiful harvests and good health. The grace of the moon halo will last for many months as the crops reach maturity and harvests begin. Often celebrations and festivals will follow quickly behind a moon halo in order to capitalize on the good will of Wyrvun. Sustained winds blowing in from the north suggest the coming of a harsh winter with much sickness, whereas winds coming from the south indicate a warm and uneventful summer; winds from the east suggest a wet, rainy spring, and winds from the west assure a mild autumn with bountiful harvests. Dream Divination As Wyrvun guards the entrance to eternal slumber it makes sense that he would speak to his chosen people through their dreams, offering guidance for his followers. Due to the nature of dreams, however, his messages can come across jumbled, twisted by the imaginative creativity found within them. Despite this, there are many constants that can be found across all dreams from Wyrvun. These constants hold significant meaning to the Fennic people, which can be judged by a Vigilant in order to interpret the intended message. The Weaver, often seen working on a grand tapestry or draped in a funeral shroud, represents the beginning of a new cycle and the clarity of leaving unnecessary tribulations behind, or that one may soon be faced with an important decision involving great risk. Her appearance may also suggest that by disregarding the repercussions of their actions, a person may soon find themselves in danger. She also serves as a caution that one should be aware of the people around them, as to not be taken advantage of, for something may soon prove too good to be true. The Messenger, depicted by a late loved one or monarch, signifies a need for deeper intuition to see through the dark and unknown paths laid before oneself. He typically represents a vital piece of information that is yet to reveal itself, whether due to uncertainty, deviousness, a misunderstanding, or a truth one cannot admit to themselves. His appearance may also suggest that one is being pulled down by a projection of their fears, dormant insecurities, or the resurfacing of repressed emotions. The White Bear represents the need to turn away from materialism and focus on spiritual growth, and the introspective consideration of one’s own motivations, values, and principles. They tend to appear as a spiritual mentor to guide one’s consciousness and teach them how to find their answers within themselves. The White Bear may also suggest a struggle with one's faith, unwelcome isolation, or that one may be ready to explore an interpersonal reconnection. The Wolves signify one's connection with their dignity, sensuality, fertility, creative expression, and ability to nurture, as well as their security, comfort, and practicality. The lone wolf suggests the birth of new ideas, reaping what one has sown, and the stability needed to manifest and grow; a pack of wolves represents an abundance of strong relationships, love without restraint, and coming pregnancy or births; the direwolf urges that one may need to venture out into nature to reconnect with their personal self after a time of neglect. The Snowy Owl symbolizes that life is in a constant state of change; his appearance suggests a sudden increase in love, resources, or unexpected benefits, as well as breakthroughs in negative situations or the end of a harmful cycle. The owl may also appear during times of great control and stability as a cue that factors outside of one’s control are influencing their situation. The Dragon signifies conscious connections, meaningful relationships, open communication, and raw honesty. When the dragon soars into one’s dreamscape, it suggests that they may be out of sync with the people around them, or that they are ignoring responsibilities which have thrust hard choices upon them. The dragon signifies being at war with oneself, and to rectify this, one must be open and clear about their values and beliefs. They must decide what they stand for and work to unite against those who would challenge their philosophy and morals. The Comet, whether soaring across open sky or in a reflection of a lake, brings with it the revelation that unforeseen danger is coming, out of one’s control and impossible to avoid. It serves as a catalyst for sudden drastic change: upheaval, destruction, and chaos. This coming event will shake a person to their core and affect them spiritually, mentally, and physically. On rare occasions, The Comet may also serve as an indication of spiritual awakening or revelation, but only if one can make a massive transformation before reaching the point that change is the only option. The North Star is generally seen as a positive omen, symbolizing endless possibilities and one’s hope for the future. Those who glimpse this celestial body should be prepared to follow their dreams and aspirations, inspired and hopeful, while being wary of potential red flags. The North Star may also signify the need to open oneself towards the healing of old wounds and neglect. The Sword and The Shield represent justice, fairness, truth, and the law. To see them suggests that one is being called to account for their actions and will be judged accordingly. One may also be met with the pair when they need to make an important choice that has the potential for long-term repercussions; one should be aware of the impact their decisions will have on their well-being and the well-being of others. Similarly, The Sword and Shield may also represent that one is unwilling to take accountability for their actions, and serves as a reminder that the consequences will weigh on their conscience until they acknowledge these faults. Deep Slumber signifies a complete, painful severance between the past and future and a need to release unhealthy attachments. It may also suggest the coming of a painful transformative change or ending of a major phase in life. One who finds themselves facing their own sleeping visage must be ready to close one door to open another, put the past behind them, and be ready to embrace new opportunities. Less commonly, this vision may represent the massive personal transformation that one is going through, and one is urged to embrace this change rather than resisting it, lest they become stuck in changeless limbo. Raging Fires symbolize willpower, determination, and strength, and suggests that now is not the time to be passive in the hope that things will work out in one’s favor. One should take focused action and stick to their course, no matter what challenges come their way. Fire also represents the call for one to be assertive and courageous, bold in their expression and firm in their boundaries. Cleansing Cleansing is a ritual by which the Vigilants seek to purge Fin’hesin of corruption, foreign gods, and voidal chaos. The Vigilants assemble at the Wayshrine of Birth for this task. There, they make offerings, and the Archvigilant of Birth appeals to Wyrvun for the cleansing of their land. Thereafter, the Archvigilant of Birth wields the Breath of Isvin, drawing flames from the offering fire. From this lantern, other vessels are lit, and the Vigilants fan out across Fin’hesin - spreading fire through the use of controlled burns. Through the offerings of Birth, the land is born anew - purged of undesirable influences. These controlled burns have the added benefit of preventing wildfires - a not uncommon occurrence in summertime Fin’hesin, despite the region’s permanent snow. Blooding Blooding is a dark, secret, and dangerous ritual that is periodically performed. Known only to the Vigilants, it is an act of self-sacrifice, and its goal is to imbue Wyrvun with strength. Since Wyrvun’s fall and redemption, he remains weak - recovering among the dead in Fin’ciwn. After his conflict with Iblees, and on account of his distrust of other Aengudaemon, the ritual is done in secret - for it is thought Wyrvun would not wish for rivals to know of his returning strength, lest they grow envious and feel threatened. To perform this act, the Vigilants gather at the Wayshrine of Death, for in his weakness Wyrvun is counted among them. There, they cut their skin and heavily bleed themselves over the offering fire, giving rise to the myriad of scars emblematic of a Vigilant. Through this act, they restore strength and life to Wyrvun. ______________________________________________________________________ Joining the Vigilants Prospective Vigilants from across Almaris make their way to Ikur'fiyem in the Fennic Remnants, that bastion of Wyrvun's devotees and center of Isvinity. There, they may find the guidance that they seek, and embark on the long path to Vigilance.
  25. FLYER: VOTE FOR JULIUS! [!] New flyers would be found on several stands, presenting Julius de Rosius facing the three terms in admiration and pride, it would seem as if the three words were attached to eachother while simultaneously Julius catches them all out of a reflex, representing his pride into these three aspects of the Orenian culture and society. [!] [!] To each poster would be a small card attached stating "For our Culture, History and Religion! One God, One Emperor, One Empire! Vote Julius de Rosius, Now!"
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