Re: [Glorantha]Theists /= Gloranthans

From: Peter Larsen <plarsen_at_uri.edu>
Date: Sun, 29 Feb 2004 09:46:11 -0500


At 12:16 PM 2/27/2004 +0000, simon_hibbs2 wrote:
>Andrew Larsen:
>
> > I would suggest that Gloranthan religion is much more
> >like ancient polytheism than modern notions of religion,
> >which tend to be based on Christianity and its emphasis on
> >faith and belief. ...
>
>You're comparing Gloranthan theists with real world theists
>and then saying 'therefore Gloranthans bla, bla, bla' where
>you should be saying 'therefore Gloranthan theists bla, bla,
>bla'.

         Heh. You're trying to change abilities in the middle of an extended contest. The bulk of the discussion was about Gloranthan theists -- specifically Orlanthi (like most of the discussions on this list). It's a little unreasonable to chide someone for addressing the main issue as presented. I think Andrew Larsen's comments cover theism and animism pretty well -- as long as you do the right rituals, the daimons/gods and spirits don't really care what you believe. Similarly agents of retribution take actions against ill deeds, not ill thoughts.

>You paint with too broad a brush. All this means is that
>Gloranthan Theist beliefs about the attitudes of the gods mirror
>real world Theist beliefs about the attitudes of the gods.
>However Gloranthan Mystics believe that the beliefs and state
>of mind of the individual are _all_ that matter. Monotheists
>such as the Malkioni also seem to place a greater emphasis on
>orthodoxy of faith.

         You are more or less on target here, I think. Of course, mystics don't really have a being judging their actions at all -- either your are bringing your body, mind, spirit, etc into agreement with the Ultimate Reality or you aren't. Wrong action, wrong thought, etc are their own punishment rather than guidelines to follow lest some higher being discipline you.

         I also think you are right about the Malkioni, but I'm not as sure -- does anyone know if Saints, etc can see into their worshipper's hearts? Different sects probably have different beliefs about the subject. In the real world, Catholics believe that good works bring spiritual merit. In contrast, many Protestant sects focus on grace -- an action by God that allows one to be saved. Good works are taken as a reflection of a state of grade but are not technically required. (I'm simplifying dramatically here). In extreme creeds, belief doesn't actually matter -- if God has not picked you, all the good deeds and fervent belief in the world aren't going to help you. Usually, of course, you can throw away God's grace, if you're that sort of person.

         Anyway, I assume that Western religions also differ on the topic. I see Rokarism as more predestined; if you are born a Rokari, God has smiled on you and you will get to Solace as long as you don't throw it away by doing bad things like breaking caste rules. The Hrestoli seem more like good works people -- doing good, showing merit, etc. are signs of a good soul, and you can make up for bad deeds by intentional good works (heck, they may even have indulgences where you can "buy into" the store of accumulated communal good works (probably by building chapels and churches rather than just handing over cash, but I don't know)). I hope there's some really fatalistic creeds out there, too....

         So, yeah, Andrew's comments only really related to theists (and, I think animists). But that was what was being discussed.

Peter Larsen

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End of Glorantha Digest Received on Mon 01 Mar 2004 - 06:56:25 EET

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