From: Martin Laurie (
Date: Sat 17 May 1997 - 00:55:54 EEST

Apology for the weird things that happened to my Deville post - my email
has never done that before.


Remster (didn't put his name down) comments:
>However, in order to function as a Game World, a common structure and
>truth to myth must be decided.

Strange that as I've run Glorantha for some time and had no common
structure and actual true myth - such ideas detract from the joys of
Glorantha - the uncertainty, the mythic richness and the irony of Truth
being changed by free will and actions. Why on earth do you feel that a
common structure and myth _must_ be decides?!?

>To say the Deities are subjective is to effectively say they don't exist.

Exactly, they don't in the sense of individual guys charging around but
they do exist in that to the Gloranthans who worship them they plainly do
exist and the myths ar eplainly true. As a person playing in that world I
can take and objective look at a subkective view and enjoy the full variety
it offers me as a GM.

Those that argue that the Gods are "real" and that there is one true myth
or deity are taking a bloody-minded stance. This view simply isn't
logical. We know that in Glorantha there are multiple myths for Storm Gods
and multiple names for different Storm Gods and that even the same name for
a deity (Orlanth/Orlanthus) can be applied to totally different "Gods".

We know that the Gods don't walk around and do things and this is seen by
some as proof that the Compromise exixsts - the argument goes like this
"The Compromise says that Gods cannot walk the world as they are bound -
they don't walk the world therefore they _must_ exist"

Such logic is fallacious in the extreme.

Firstly, given that human beings are involved in this equation, we know
full well that religions are created by their worshippers and the
priesthoods create the mythic structure of their religions to match the way
the world appears to work and the way they want it to work. So the
Compromise is a myth that explains why the Gods _don't_ wander the world
because otherwise this is somewhat unexplainable given the Gods war myths.
In addition this means that the only way to get power is through the
priests who naturally wish to emphasise their own position, after all they
work to get where they are.

Secondly the sheer diversity of faiths with broadly similar magical effects
yet very different religions and histories indicates that there is a
continuity in the form and use of magic. This is a truth in Glorantha -
Storm deities have broadly similar powers as do Solar dieties and Earth
deities, even if the two forms of worship have never met - this is why the
God Learners existed at all - they were the first world spanning culture
that categorised and sorted such information and saw that such similarities
must have an explanation. The explanation is simple - gods are forces of
nature and spirit that are give shape by worship - mutable power sources
that the God Learners tapped into and used. What they failed to realise
was that those forces were also defined and structured by worship and their
arbitary usage caused a backlash of forces that broke their power.

To say that the Orlanthi myths are "right" because they have defined the
compromise is a huge assumption without any logical basis - considering how
the Orlanth religion, the Humakt religion and almost every other religion
has changed over the ages and the from of the God and their powers have
changed with it, its no surprise that the mythic structure has changed too.
 In fact this change is proof positive that the Gods are mutable for if
they were not then there would be no change. If the Gods could act or had
agendas of their own that they Divined to the priesthoods then the world of
Glorantha would be a very different place and history would not be as

Martin Laurie


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