I’ve had a rough week owing to my recent visit from Nurgle, so I’m going with an easy-to-write post for tonight.* This is just a brief overview of the major faiths in my group’s setting, each of which was an avatar of a single player during our Dawn of Worlds sessions. Most of the more detailed stuff is getting filled out through play, and I’ve reserved the right to certain degree of retconning from the original creation as the world develops (though I respect the broad outline of the shared setting). There were seven players involved in developing the world, but my avatar in creating the setting was the collective 1,000 Princes of Hell, so there are three faiths in this post and three more coming in Part II.
Iso Kharu (The Great Bear, Soul of the Earth, Father of All)
No faith has had a greater influence on the current state of the world than that of the Great Bear. The Army of Iso Kharu’s Wrath swept across the North, laying waste to its cities and leaving naught but ruins behind. Iso Kharu is the primary god of both the dwarves and the Arctur, a race of “barbaric” men originating in the Arcturun Hills that bridge the North and the South, as well as of the Ursu, a race of near-mythic bear-men. Veneration of Iso Kharu is also prevalent among the wood elves, which led to that race joining with the others during the war of the Wrath. The Iso Kharun faith is animistic, with the Great Bear regarded as the creator of all living things and the king of all spirits. It also incorporates a strong element of ancestor worship.
Malroth (Lord of Hooded Spirits, Whisperer of Secrets, Warden of Souls)
Malroth plays an unusual role in the beliefs of the Men of the North; though he is mainly known as the god of death, there are ancient scrolls and tomes that also refer to him as the creator. It would seem that he was not satisfied with his creation as it was, for he is also strongly associated with undeath and the quest for immortality. It is said that it was Malroth who gave the secrets of lichdom and vampirism to his most devoted worshippers in the early days of the world. Though many mages still pay homage to the Lord of Hooded Spirits, common worship among most northerners has long been isolated to appeasements on festival nights. The exception to this were the Somonarian warlords, who revered the Warden of Souls above all else.
The Virtuous Trinity – Soleus’Nam (Sun-Sister, Keeper of Fields, Lighter of Day), Tiberus’Ur (Harbinger of Twilight, Lighter of the Hearth), and Daerreg’Mor (Shadow Guardian, Singer in the Dark, Lighter of Stars)
Veneration of these three gods, both as individuals and as a whole, has been the common faith among both the Men of the North and of the South since their first prophets walked the world in ages long past. But while in the South and in the Atgur Reach this made the protectors of men into the dominant faith, through rest of the North this just meant the faith of commoners, uttering fearful prayers for deliverance from dark beings worshipped by vile princes and priest-kings. The most notable presence of the Virtuous Trinity throughout the North has been the Order of St. Kaveran, an order of church-knights dedicated to freeing men from blasphemous rule. The faith is highly institutionalized in the regions spared Iso Kharu’s Wrath and loosely organized in the small farming communities scattered among the ruins. Believers regard these gods not as creators per se, but rather as uplifters who brought man out of savagery and brutality. This means that some acknowledge Malroth or Iso Kharu during festival rituals. Other gods are considered to be the same manner of being as demon princes.
*I wrote this last night, and at the time I was starting to feel better and was optimistic about my trip to Pittsburgh. The later evening proved rough, though, and I’ve got a doctor’s appointment at 9 pm tonight to determine the wisdom of still pushing forward.