Tuesday, October 20, 2009
When one thinks of an evil god, a deity of such spite and anguish that the very name invokes thoughts of tyranny and oppression; exploiting the weak and the subjugation of the masses into sin, only one word comes to mind: Bane. Subservient to Bane through Bhaal; are the rivals Loviatar and Talona who wage a conflict of discipline versus madness amongst their followers, and Malar The Beastlord. Collectively they empower Bhaal; as the ends to their various means ultimately benefit him. In the end it is Bane who reaps the fell rewards from the bloodlust, sweat and tearful cries of their faithful that toil on behalf of their gods and beliefs. On the left side of Bane are Myrkul and Shar who occasionally come to each others aid only if it attracts the notice and recognition from Bane.
Monday, October 19, 2009
He of the Unsleeping Eyes, the Watcher, the Vigilant, the Vigilant One, the Great Guard, the God of Guardians
"He also serves who stands and waits and watches carefully" and "Careful planning always defeats rushed actions in the end" are popular sayings of Helm's faithful. Novices of Helm are charged to be vigilant and to he fair and diligent in the conduct of their orders. They must protect the weak, the unpopular, the injured, and the young and not sacrifice them for others. They must anticipate attacks and be ready, know their foes, and care carefully for their weapons so that their weapons" can perform their duties properly when called upon. "Never betray your trust" is the guiding phrase for faithful of Helm.
This philosophy extends to thinking about how best to guard and protect, both in terms of weapons and the deployment of guardians, and to anticipating what attacks may come and having a practiced plan ready to deal with such threats. The faithful and the priests of Helm train and exercise so as to always be able to carry out their duties as best they can, they always obey orders, provided those orders follow the dictates of Helm.
The thought of commanding undead rather than turning them or destroying them is abhorrent to Helm, and so his clergy are not allowed to do so and would never dream of trying. This difference in philosophy is a major factor in the rivalry between his church and that of Torm.
There are those who learn to ply the Arcane Arts, others who parley with forces to acquire it, and then there are individuals who were born with it in their blood. They are (Eldrich) Eld-Born, or sorcerers- spellcasters that do not need toil in front of musty tomes and spellbooks or make pacts with the denizens of magic. Wizards and their ilk can train and learn to become spell-casters but in the North, they are considered vastly inferior to sorcerers, whose life blood contains the eldritch power to spontaneously strike down armies from afar or influence the weak with a whisper. Even some creatures outside the civilized streets, houses and governments are considered eld-born as well: griffons, unicorns and winter wolves- to name a few; all have an innate magical ability that is not learned but instinctual.
It is common knowledge that two sorcerers can often produce a sorcerer child. And as of this writing; is not known if such a birth has ever occurred between a sorcerer and non-sorcerer parentage. Therefore, arranged marriages and or planned births are practiced in the North. However, over the years there has been a notable decline in sorcerer births- leading to an increased feeling of unrest and some desperation in the magical community- with some asking if winter wolves, unicorns and the like are waning in births.
Friday, October 9, 2009
The word Mystra translates to Magic in language of the Celestials. Worship of Mystra is found in all cultures in the Realms all divine interpretations of Magic. Early texts don't refer to Mystra as a divine being rather as a primordial force- a fifth element. While these texts have never been discounted in the church, the Faith never questioned the priests feminine references to their god. Unlike other elemental faiths, Clerics of Mystra are granted spells and domains as defined under their doctrines and rituals. In Mystra's province is the patron of wizards: Azuth. Selune- who vistis the touch of Mystra upon those born under a full moon. And Nethys, the patron of Diviners.