Thursday, March 26, 2009

From the Attic: Gods of the Majestic Wilderlands

Gods of the Majestic Wilderlands

DANNU (DAN-NU) - The Mother of Mercy, Lady of the Green Earth, the Hearth Mother
Dannu is the goddess of mercy, love, home, and fields. Dannu is worshiped by peasants thourghout the Majestic Wilderlands. The church of Dannu works to bring aid and relief to the peasant when they suffer. The church of Dannu has special relationship with the church of Mitra . Together the two churches work to bring justice and peace to the Wilderlands. The church of Silvanus and Dannu cooperate on many matters.
SYMBOL: A Sheaf of Wheat on a Green Circle

HAMAKHIS (HA-MA-KISS) - The Deathlord, Lord of Undeath, The Final Judge
He is the god of death and judgment. All who die come to Hamakhis were they judged; those who fail dwell
forever in the City of Bones and the rest proceed to their god. Hamakhis is also able to grant to undeath to his followers.

Hamakhis has two types of sects; the first believing that if one make the proper sacrifices to Hamakhis and glorify his name, they will be granted the state of undeath, the second preaches about Hamakhis the Final Judge and warns people to be ready for him.
SYMBOL: A White Skull

KALI (KAA-LEE) - The Black Mother, The Death Crone, Lady of Illusions
Kali is the goddess of murder, and hatred. Her goals directly conflict with those of the goddess
Dannu. She revels in death and destruction. She sunders man and wife, takes the newborn from their mother, and brings famine and plague to the Wilderlands. Her followers are secreted in obscure caves, little alleys, and hidden valleys. The Claws of Kali are the most feared killers in the Majestic Wilderlands. The Claws support the main temples of Kalie. Also in many lands where temples are not able to be established, Kali is served by her
Blood Children, the Vampires and Werewolves. The Power of Blood makes them fearsome creatures of the night.

SYMBOL: The Kris Knife (Wavy Bladed Dagger)

MITRA (MI-TRA) -The Red Maiden, The Lady of the White Hand, Lady of Paladins
Mitra is the goddess of justice, war, and paladins. Mitra defends the helpless, and protects the weak from
those who desire to prey on them. There is great enmity between the church of Mitra and the church of Set. The Church of Mitra has a special relationship with the church of Dannu. Together the three churches work to bring justice to the Wilderlands.

SYMBOL: The White Hand on a Red Circle, The White Lion

NEPHTHYS (Nep-thee-is) - The Bargainer, The Golden Lady, The Queen of Opalescence
She is the goddess of wealth and pleasure; she is widely worshipped thorughout the Majestic Wilderlands by
merchants. Nephthy's followers believe that if one honors the Bargainer and indulges her pleasure, one will succeed in commerce. Her worship invariably involves orgies and sexual rites.

SYMBOL: Three Golden Coins

VERITAS (VEER-A-TAS) - The Craftsman, The Star Lord, The Father of Truth
Veritas is the god of crafts, artifice, and of creation. He is revered by the Dwarves. He is claimed to be the
eldest of the gods and the first to come to the Wilderlands. Veritas created the creatures of the earth and all of the children races. He established the First Covenant by which the Children Races were
taught and brought to glory. Veritas also established the Second Covenant by which the surviving gods of the Demon Wars agreed to rule the Wilderlands by faith.

SYMBOL: A silver chime with a golden hammer.

SET (SET) - The Serpant Lord, The Dragon, the Night Hunter
Set is the god of war, night, and evil. He is the conquerer, the emperor, and the dragon. He teaches the one
must strive for honor and glory. He also teaches that one must obey those above him and expect those below to obey.

SYMBOL: A serpent head on a black circle

SILVANUS (SIL-VAN-US) - The Forest King, The Dreamlord
Silvanus is the god of dreams, magic, and the forest. Silvanus is especially revered by the Elves. His worship
involves a lot of mysticism, simple but yet complex rituals, and magic. Among Humans his followers are known as Druids and the Rangers take Silvanus as their patron. Silvanus's followers work a lot with the church of Dannu.

SYMBOL: A Azure (Blue) Bowl

THOTH (THAWTH) - The Immortal Sage, The Bearer of the Lantern
Thoth is the god of knowledge. He is charged by Veritas with the keeping of the Second Covenant and the recording of all what transpire in the Wilderlands. His followers mainly follow the monastic life and collect books of lore. The church of Thoth also has an order that produces many fine jesters that entertain the courts of the Wilderlands.
SYMBOL: Lantern

THOR - The Lord of Icy Winds, Thunderer of the Gods.
Thor is the god of the wind, thunder, and war. He is the ultimate warrior, and the best at battle. His followers
live for battle, and continually strive to improve their skills and do great deeds. They believe that to die in battle is the only way to die properly.

SYMBOL: Hammer


Long ago I decide I wanted only a few major gods but have many names. The various Cultures view the ten gods through different lenses.

In the northwest in the lands influenced by the Elves Veritas, Silvanus, and Dannu are worshiped as the three major gods.

The Ghinorians consider themselves the chosen people of Mitra and view Set as a vile enemy.

The Sarnic people of Orchia and the Isle of Blest consider themselves the chosen people of Hamakhis.

In the Far South the Empire of Thule is ruled by a trioka consisting of the Emperor as leader of the army, the Church of Set, and Order of Set an order of Mages.

After the fall of the Ghinorian Empire the church of Mitra fell into decline in the old Ghinorian heartland in the south. The pantheon of invading Ioian Barbarians became the dominant religion. To the Ionian Thor was known as Mantriv the Monster Slayer and protector of the people. His wife Dannu cares for the lands so that the people can harvest their bounty. Advising the two is the wise Sage Thoth the Ibis Lord. Thier enemy is the Kali known as the Night Hag.

There are several other variations. I found that doing this allow me to add a dash of local color to the religous picture without overwhelming the players with obscure details.

The names I chosen were designed to be evocative of the diety. A new player hearing the name Set can rightly assume that he is an "evil" god. It can wait for later to discover what make my version of Set different. I do have alternative names for when I use them in my published projects.

For example in Points of Light Delaquain is Mitra, Sarrath is Set. Veritas survived unchanged because it is original name that I used. (it is latin for truth). Thoth I didn't change because I don't have a good alternative for his name. In Points of Light and Points of Light 2 Azeel and Azartec are alternative names for a male version of Kali.

I also do not like stats for dieties. I instead focus on the religons and the NPCs involved. The few one on one experiences with deities I alway try to role-play as deeply mystical. Few of my players leave those encounters unchanged.

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