Miscellany

From: Nick Brooke (D&T CAS) (100656.1216@compuserve.com)
Date: Thu 22 Feb 1996 - 15:56:23 EET


_____
Nils:

> My only point is that there is a difference between saying that my
> religion is better than my neighbour's and saying that my religion is
> the only true religion. And that is what rubs me the wrong way about
> the Malkioni.

It's what rubs me the wrong way about those Orlanthi barbarians. We tolerant
Lunars are prepared to accept even Orlanth into our cosmology in order to heal
the world of the wounds caused by Orlanth and his kin; they accuse us of
worshipping Foul Chaos Monstrosities from Beyond. They aren't claiming to have
"the only true religion", but they are denying that there is any truth, love or
beauty in the harmonious perfection of our Lunar Way. Which is why Death's too
good for them.

_____
Lewis suggested Sever Spirit works on Undead with spirits, as Humakt *really*
has it in for them. But maybe Humakt hates them, in part, because his best
trick, Sever Spirit, *doesn't* work against something that's already dead?

__________
Kiwi Peter writes:

> There is a Dara Happan Heresy known as the Umbarites (which was a
> home grown version of Spolitism). No prizes for guessing the chief
> goddess of the Umbarites.

The Spolites, too, may have valued the comfort and security of knowing you are
part of the Darkness. I'm not sure yet just what the Spolite Way was (apart, of
course, from including Evil Black Witchery, Nysalorian Amorality, Bull-shaped
Braziers, and Oppressive Gloom).

But it struck me that one of the things Nysalor taught people was how to
overcome the limitations of their own belief systems: teaching Orlanthi that
Stable Order has a place, Yelmites of the necessity of Change, and Malkioni to
value something other than Pure Logic.

Maybe the Spolites, a Nysalorian Heresy, learned how to use Nysalor's methods to
overcome other peoples' belief systems. (This fits well with the story of the
Carmanian March, which was post-Spolite but possibly used similar techniques to
screw the Dara Happans on the mythical plane).

A crude example: the Dara Happans know that they are Light, and we (therefore)
cast ourselves as Darkness. They know they are Few, and we (therefore) say we're
the Many. Then, as the Many can overcome a Few, while Light descends into
Darkness, we've use their own myths to screw them up.

> Personally I think the Hills of Gold is a Holy Grail type contest for
> the Orb of the Eye with many gods and heroes questing for it. Only
> during the Great Darkness, it was a lot grimmer and nobody succeeded
> for a long time...

One thing I thought at RQCon Down Under is that the "Hill of Gold" might be a
ritual ziggurat, and the contest there between the various gods an attempt to

make a new Emperor in the Great Darkness, where nobody passes the Ten Tests (but
where Antirius and Elmal and Orlanth and Yelmalio and Inora and Zorak Zoran and
Old Uncle Tom Cobbley all compete and lose).

One problem with this is that Emperor-making really should be done at Raibanth.
I suggested this to Greg, and he thought the Hill of Gold attempt might have
been made when the Dara Happans had sealed off the Empire within the Dome of
Manarlavus the Roofer: when the old ritual sites weren't accessible for those
locked outside, who (shut away from the Anaxial Emperor, and maybe unaware that
he existed, but knowing the Dara Happan rites and ways) wanted to make one for
themselves.

________________________________
Three Domes: a Lunar Speculation

While I'm talking about the Dome, here's another thought:

Manarlavus built a Physical Dome to contain everything good within his Empire.
It was limited by the mundanity of its structure, and eventually fell. We can
still see its foundations in Peloria to this day.

Yara Aranis raised a Spiritual Dome to contain everything good within our
Empire. This dome, called the "Glowline" where its edge touches the ground, is
maintained and expanded by the worship of the Goddess of the Reaching Moon, and
grows wider still and wider as the benevolent empire increases its span and wins
new converts to the Lunar Way. It is vastly larger than the old Physical Dome of
the Roofer.

When the Transformation comes, we will dwell within the Mystical Dome of the
White Moon. We cannot know how this will appear: some say it will be coterminous
with the Sky Dome, and include all of Glorantha within it, while others would go
further yet. We cannot say if it will be visible or invisible, but it will
surely transcend the physical and spiritual reality of the previous two Domes,
and give yet greater blessings to those fortunate enough to dwell within its
protection.

______
Ian B. writes:

> In Glorantha, is the important element of support "material" or "spiritual"
> in nature. In other words, is it the ability of a community to materially
> support a priest, or the amount of magic points sacrificed each week by the
> community, the important aspect of whether or not a priest can exist in the
> community.

I suspect it's a bit of both. On the spiritual side, a priest with fewer than
100 initiates might not have a large enough congregation to guarantee contact
with his deity. On the material side, most communities won't be able to support
that many priests, or to spend a significant amount of their time devoting
themselves to spiritual things.

Note, though, that some priestly figures (or at least divine-magic-using Godi
types) may be able to draw magical support from a community which wants to have
such folk around. For example, it's hard to believe that all the smiths in
Sartar congregate annually into groups of 100+ worshippers in order to obtain
Gustbran's Rune magic. More likely that they somehow "fit in to" the

socio-mythical framework of belief, so that a settlement with a smith supports
him by giving him a place within their community, and he can contact the deity
enough to obtain a Rune spell from this social support. Likewise for Rainmakers,
etc.

I *don't* have mechanics for this yet, and I *don't* think that it should
replace pilgrimages to temples on Holy Days (which gives us a lot of Potential
Game Fun). But some of the Orlanthi tribal cults seem unlikely to have a mass

following anywhere: given initiations to the pantheon as a whole, it's likely
they draw part of their mythic connection from the general worship activities of
the community.

_____
Kevin asks about Lunar citizenship. I think it's maybe a bit more widespread
than Roman Citizenship, but certainly not universal within the Heartlands and
rather noteworthy in the Provinces. Slaves aren't citizens, frex; most Tarshite
townsmen aren't, but their magistrates and nobles and priests probably are. You
can be awarded Lunar Citizenship as a reward, as part of your retirement benefit
from the Provincial Army, etc. And some of the strangest folk hold Lunar
Citizenship...

We know there's at least two degrees of citizenship (as the Carmanians are
"Citizen Foreigners"): given the pre-existing complex structure of Dara Happan
social classes (cf. The Fortunate Succession), this should comes as no surprise.

Citizenship is probably hereditary, and may (as in Carmania) be conferred on
whole ethnic groups, or be part of the standard perks of enlisting in the Lunar
Army, becoming a Moon Lord of the Seven Mothers, etc.). It certainly ought to be
*very* hard to lose, and a valuable prize to attain.

I've borrowed from the Romans the idea that citizens have the right of making an
appeal to the Red Emperor in certain circumstances; my Yolanela story makes it
clear that Citizen Foreigners do *not* have this right.

====
Nick
====

------------------------------

End of Glorantha Digest V2 #400
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