Kralorela

From: Peter Metcalfe (metcalph@voyager.co.nz)
Date: Fri 30 Jan 1998 - 14:03:02 EET


Nils Weinander:

>I'm loathe to bring up real world parallells, but look
>at Chine: there were the mongol and manchu dynasties,
>but the culture and religion remained. The invaders
>were quickly taken into the chinese fold. Even the
>communist culture revolution proved unsuccessful.

The stasis of Chinese Culture in the face of invaders is
a bit of a myth. The Ming Empire was markedly different
from the Sung for example. Which is why I tend to be
extremely sceptical about claims for Kralorela's cultural
conservatism.

> "The civilization is ancient, based upon
> Golden Age customs long lost to the rest
> of the world."

And how many of the other cultures in the world make the same
claim? The Dara Happans, the Malkioni, the Brithini, the
Elves, the Mostali and the Teshnans. Even the Lunars claim to
have restored lost Golden Age customs.

>Wouldn't it be more interesting if there _was_ one
>exception, one nation where tradition really _is_
>unbroken?

It may be but we know Kralorela cannot be that place for it has
been conquered by Orlanth, Kajaboom, the God Learners and by
Sheng Seleris. Vormain is a more probable place and Dinal is

stated to be one AFAIK.

Stephen Martin:

>>There are several extant writings which you have publically referred
>>to at the Victoria Lore Auction that indicated that Kralorela in the
>>first age (or before the God Learners came) was full of primitives
>>and hsunchen.

>OK, again I was being imprecise, and again I apologize. This is a VERY
>LATE First Age, and early Second Age, situation, and this is the period
>to which I was referring at the Lore Auction. In other words, the 200-300

>or so years before the God Learners came. Why do you think the God
>Learners were able to take over the land so easily? There was no Dragon
>Emperor, and fuck-all of Exarchs around to coordinate the defense of the
>land.

Given that Yanoor is considered by the Kralori to have been a dragon
emperor, I find this unlikely. Furthermore several of the Exarchs
are said to fled north to found the New Kingdom of Wisdom so there
were some exarchs there. I know you are referring to the theory that
the Dragon Emperor went away at the Sunstop and did not come back
until the Dragon's Awakening Shudder. But Trollpak makes reference
to the Kralori defeating a combined army of dwarves and trolls at
the Battle of Warring Ford in 560 ST. Which would be unusual for
an empire in retreat.

The concept that Kralorela suffered a setback after the Sunstop
is well taken and this is why I disagree with Sandy's Theory when
he says that Shang-Hsa became Yanoor after the Sunstop. IMO
Kralorela should have suffered some traumas of an age change
and the above battle should be viewed as a resurgence by the
Empire.

>>Secondly the idea that the Exarchs after the War in Heaven turned
>>the clock back to arrive at first age style government seems to me
>>implausible. The Third Republic never returned to France nor the
>>Weimar Republic to Germany after the Second World War (not even at
>>1989). And yet the interregnum those countries had was far shorter
>>than the Kralori under the God Learners.

>Unless, of course, the difference was that they again had a divinely- and
>draconically-inspired Emperor to lead them in proper ways.

All religious leaders in Glorantha are divinely inspired. Yet their
cultures change over the years. The EWF was also draconically inspired.
It changed as well and then destroyed itself because of mistakes.
So I'm not confident about Godunya's claims.

>>Dara Happa is no poorer for having had
>>foreigners being acclaimed as Emperors on the Footstool and indeed
>>we can trace many changes to these foreigners.

>Yes, and GRoY is full of times when foreigners were allowed to worship
>the Dara Happan gods, and betrayed them instead.

Which would be news to Jenarong, Vuranostum, several Rinliddi Emperors
and most of the Masks of the Red Emperor.

>Kralorela is not Dara Happa, Seshnela, or Umathela. Kralorela is perhaps
>unique among large Gloranthan nations in that its inhabitants consider it
>to be the Perfect Land. Dara Happans know their land is not perfect --
>the Sky World is much better. For Kralorelans, the mundane world IS
>Heaven, it IS the Perfect Land.

The Kralori know of the Sky World where the Thunder Man lives and
the Well of Rising Dragons goes. Their name for their land is
'The Land of Splendor', _not_ the Perfect Land. Besides this is
all Godzone propoganda. Every nation here and in glorantha thinks
their land is the best in the world and the others are not so good.
I do not see why it should be taken as true.

>I deny that any other
>major culture in Glorantha believes this -- that is why they all have
>distinct afterlives. I don't think the Kralorelans believe in an
>afterlife per se -- when they die, they wait for the Emperor. When he
>"dies," they all pass on to a new level of existence.

The Lunar Afterlife and the Malkioni Solace is even more vague in their
promise than the Kralori for which it is claimed:

        'A man or women born to a farmer expects to be a farmer to
        the end of his or her days, to recieve a farmer's recompense,
        to raise his or her children as farmers, and to recieve a
        farmers reward in the _complex_ _Kralorelean_ _afterlife.'
                                Genertela Book p 21 (italics mine).

Also:

        'Thaluzrni discovered the Pill of Immortality and gave it
        to his wife. She ate it and retired to the Islands of the
        East, a paradisical site reserved for virtuous initiates
        of their cult between incarnations.'
                                Runequest Companion p9.

Thus the Kralori do have an afterlife. How to reconcile this with
the Palace of Excellent Reward mentioned in GoG (and the mass
suicide following Yanoor's flight) is interesting but I won't pursue
it in this post.

>If you think it would be more interesting, by all means have it that way.
>I am merely offering my opinions, based on what I know of Kralorelan
>history and philosophy, and on a few brief discussions with Greg.

And last time this came round, Sandy had said that Greg was
agreeing with his Shang-Hsa = Yanoor. So I really can't accept this
certificate of excellence until Greg makes his mind up and says
so on Greg Sez or another public forum.

- --Peter Metcalfe

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