Saints & False Gods, again

From: ian (i.) gorlick (igorlick@bnr.ca)
Date: Fri 02 Feb 1996 - 16:01:00 EET


I hope this doesn't turn up twice, but my original transmission a few days ago
seems to have gone amiss somewhere in the spirit plane via the internet.
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Peter Metcalfe and Sandy both agree that the Malkioni faiths tend to adopt false
gods as saints. Peter proposes that the various sects are all aware that their
heretical neighbours have done this but don't worry about their own list of
saints; they can see the motes in their neighbours eyes but not the beam in
their own. I think I prefer Sandy's idea that the Rokari, at least, do get upset
about it periodically and try to purge their false saints in violent bouts of
puritanism and iconoclasm; this will generate interesting conflicts and MGF.

There seems to be some concensus developing on the problem of false gods being
promoted to saints. Nobody has yet addressed what I consider to be the more
subtly dangerous problem of saints being raised to the status of gods. I see the
Malkioni starting out by venerating saints, then praying to saints as

intermediaries with the Invisible God, then praying to saints as the agents of
the Invisible God, praying to saints with some mention of the Invisible God, and
finally forgetting the Invisible God and just praying to the saints.

Priests may start by encouraging common folk to pray to the saints because the
saints are more accessible figures than the IG. Many sects may be in this mode
of operation. But they have to keep the IG in the forefront of the worshippers
minds. If that slips, then the worshippers can easily lapse into paganlike
veneration of dead heroes. Once this starts to become common, a backlash should
occur.

I believe that the veneration of saints won't have started before the martyrdom
of St Hrestol. He was probably the first. His introduction of devotional worship
to the Malkioni would have laid the groundwork for the veneration of saints. In
1600 years, I believe some branches of the Malkioni must have gone through this
process of degeneration and backlash at least once.

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