Religion

All the deities of the various races have been preserved, but are often less prevalent where their followers are scarce. Those who revere their racial deities do so amidst their own kind, often in secret places, according to the customs that have always been used.

The barbarian peoples worship a vast array of divine or other spiritual beings. The gods they worship – or spirits – can vary, even from clan to clan, or person to person.

Humans worship a number of deities; those of the Ancient Pantheon (PH, p.106) follow; unless otherwise noted they maintain their normal situations:

Heironeous, in addition to his traditional roles, is associated with the Doctrine of Order; the strict and disciplined life, where such things are important. His temples are as they’ve always been; but also rectangular and flat, built from white stone, adorned with pure marble, limestone, ivory, white pearls, clear crystals & gems, and white precious metals, where there is room for luxury.

  • The Order of Heironeous commands the most monks in Erdon, who seek to achieve enlightenment through the Doctrine of Order. It is possible for divinely inspired non-monks (e.g. clerics, paladins) to join, but the path is more difficult for them which makes their entrance more rare.
  • The Knights of Heironeous is an order of (primarily) paladins that is often more militaristic than other organizations associated with Heironeous.

Pelor, the other major deity worshipped among humans, possesses all of the Domains normally associated with him. In barbaric lands he is mostly worshipped in his role as the sun god; in more civilized areas such as Acheron, his appeal increases among warriors less apt to be strictly lawful; in such places he is chiefly associated with the Doctrine of Balance. Pelor’s temples utilize circles, spires, turrets, and other architectural features emulating the sun – though all the while preserving a symmetry or balance – adorned with ivory and gold, among other materials of similar hues, as well as fiery gemstones.

  • The Circle of Pelor is an infamous cult that was associated with Pelor, but did not adequately represent him; in fact, Pelor himself openly opposed this organization. Note: though the Circle was destroyed in Acheron, it may yet maintain a presence elsewhere; some vestige may even remain in Acheron.
  • The Sons of Pelor is a knightly order that seeks to expand Pelor’s mission of light, even militarily.

A number of individual shrines are dedicated to specific saints, some of whom have garnered much respect. One in fact, St. Cuthbert, is revered as a deity; though his position is far from prominent. In places like Acheron he is most closely associated with the Doctrine of Justice, from whence stem the human ideals relating to fairness and equality. His temples are often rectangular; crenellated, and crowned with triangular spires like classic medieval cathedrals, built from simple grey stone blocks, and adorned within by balanced use of black and white, light and dark materials. Many worship St. Cuthbert hoping to learn and follow his path to immortality (or even divinity).

Ehlonna: the woodland goddess; and Obad-Hai: god of nature; are less known than any of the above and normally relegated to the untamed wilderness. They do not keep temples, but rather sacred groves or shrines, and then, not for their own interests, but for the sake of people hopeful to encounter them. They are not associated with any particular doctrines, but endeavour to remind people of the pastoral serenity for which (among other things) good strives against evil. Ehlonna is not associated with the sun domain, but instead grants her clerics access to the healing domain.

  • The Druidic order is perhaps the largest thing close to an organization that associates with the nature deities, but they generally focus more on nature itself.
  • The Daughters of Ehlonna is a little known clerical order that is akin to the Sons of Pelor in that only the most faithful of Ehlonna’s female clerics, who devote themselves to the protection of, and care for the woodlands are called to this service. Like other nature orders, adherents must shun metal gear, and many take only what they need, living as naturally as possible. It is said that Ehlonna herself provides for the needs of her children. Some druids and even rangers may enter this order, as well as the occasional good monk or paladin (Ehlonna rarely selects those who are not true to her alignment).
  • The Champions of Ehlonna is an affiliation of knights that have dedicated themselves to the goddess.

Kord is rarely worshipped outside of barbarian places; his temples are simple in design, made from rough wood, adorned mostly by carvings and weapons. Despite the overall spartan simplicity, everything about Kord’s temples is crafted and constructed quite well; the adorning weapons, for example, are at least of masterwork quality, and it shows.

  • The Order of Thelon is perhaps the only knightly order whose members predominantly recognize or revere Kord, even in Acheron; though they are not a religious order by any means.

Wee Jas still sees a following, but as ever, her presence is often situational, as most people are rather uncomfortable about her profile, or else don’t care enough to invoke her ceremonies. Wealthy and wise people are often motivated to send for one of her priests when one of their kin passes her way. However, she is not noted for any divine organizations. There is, of course, a rather odd sect of wizards who would garner her favor, but nothing more is known about The Dead Witch Society (also sometimes mistaken as “The Deathwatch Society”).

Boccob and Fharlanghn keep much the same profiles as everywhere else, except that Boccob’s worshippers seem, if anything, a bit more studious than ever. The closest thing that Fharlanghn has to an organization is something called the Road of Travel, which is really just a sort of code that helps to outline his tenets. Similarly Boccob has no official order, except inasmuch as his clerics and worshippers sometimes resemble one. Sometimes they will devote themselves to the outpouring of magical knowledge, donating their time and expertise to academies and schools of wizardry.

Olidammara is as he always is, in the only respect in which he can be considered consistent: always pulling pranks (and throwing parties). He has no orders, organizations, or anything of the like; such things are abhorrent to him. According to rumor however, he actually has a lone temple somewhere in Acheron of all places . . . .

In those places strongly infused with an element, residents are apt to worship the raw element itself as much as any outsider associated with it. However, clerics of such followings rarely exhibit access to domains other than that of the element in question, and never gain access to other elemental domains.

Among the evil places, only Hextor, Vecna, Nerull, and Erythnull are known to have significant followings, besides Gruumsh and other evil racial gods, that is. Reports of such locations are few and far between, and provide few details to satisfy or contradict existing rumors. It is generally assumed that their places of worship maintain a dark, bloody, gritty, appearance.


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Religion

The Chronicles of Erdon Beaumains