Username Password
   or Create an Account
HomeForumsFAQArticlesReviewsDownloadsLinksTop 20Feedback
 Features
 
Greyhawk Wiki
Is Down :(


 
Canonfire :: View topic - sacrifices
sacrifices
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Canonfire Forum Index -> World of Greyhawk Discussion
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Mon Aug 07, 2017 7:53 pm    Post subject: sacrifices Reply with quote

Which gods of the Flanaess demand or accept sacrifices?


I mean in the technical sense: blood, flesh, living creatures.

Not just oblations or libations.


I'd guess animal sacrifice is pretty common, but sacrifice of human/demihuman/humanoid captives would be for mainly evil gods and a few of the darker nature deities.

GH Druids probably sacrifice enemies, yeah?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Cebrion
Black Hand of Oblivion
Black Hand of Oblivion


Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 3573
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Mon Aug 07, 2017 11:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clergy of Llerg ritually fight a bear to the death around 5th level, which could be construed to be a type of sacrifice (one way or another Laughing).
_________________
- Moderator/Admin/Member -
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2773
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Erythnul: "Major rites include fire and a sacrifice."

Iuz: "Their ceremonies include the burning of foul-smelling substances, the beating of great drums and the clangor of bronze bells, and blood sacrifice whenever possible."

Nerull: "Human sacrifice is common."

Wastri: "Ceremonies honoring Wastri involve sacrifices, strange musical instruments, and croaking chants."
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ehlonna seems likely to accept animal sacrifices. But I think this would involve hunters saying a brief invocation over any beast they slay by arrows or spear, rather than a more formal slaughter of penned or bound animals by a priest at an altar. Perhaps a portion is left for the goddess (offal given to scavengers, or an antler buried by a tree root).
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The cult of Heironeous may involve the ritual slaughter of cattle before statues of the god. Afterward, the worshippers cook and share the meat as part of a common meal, with a portion burned to go to the heavenly realms.

I'm building on what I see in sources on Heironeous, and adding some inspiration from real world customs from Antiquity.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Lanthorn
GreySage


Joined: Sep 09, 2009
Posts: 2286
Location: SW WA state (Highvale)

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the idea of a bull being slaughtered for Heironeous (never thought of that, actually) in preparation for a feast or celebration of great importance. I imagine Kord would do the same thing. Solonor also has his priests employ animal sacrifice, but it is a ritualized hunt. "Sometimes you get the bear, sometimes the bear gets you!" Shocked I could see Clangeddin or Moradin permitting the 'execution' of humanoids as a type of sacrifice, especially their traditional orc and goblin enemies. Not sure about Corellon (I guess a priest favoring his 'war' aspect might). I do NOT see Yondalla or Garl permitting sacrifice or animals or humanoids. Doesn't seem to fit their portfolios, attitudes, or ethos.

The actual historical druids DID perform ritualized human sacrifice, but the druids of the fantasy realm don't (according to the Complete Book of Druids, that is)...unless you rule otherwise. I don't think Beory or Berei would whatsoever, but perhaps Obad-hai would permit it, especially if they are 'barbarians.'

Virtually EVERY humanoid Power would expect ritualized sacrifice of sentient beings, starting with humans and demi-humans, followed by rival tribes of their own race or other humanoids.

-Lanthorn
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Indeed, Lanthorn, indeed.


Fharlanghn's rural priests might hang brigands (who impede travelers) at crossroads as a sort of sacrifice to their god.
If they are in a civilized region, I'd presume they'd need the countenance of the local authorities to do this. It might take the form of the sheriff taking a man to the gallows tree for a lawful execution, and the rural priest of Fhlarlangn being present to perform his archaic rites.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Cebrion
Black Hand of Oblivion
Black Hand of Oblivion


Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 3573
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like that one. Not really a sacrifice, but punishment condoned by a god. Very suitable in this case.
_________________
- Moderator/Admin/Member -
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Lanthorn
GreySage


Joined: Sep 09, 2009
Posts: 2286
Location: SW WA state (Highvale)

PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 8:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In that case, if Fharlanghn permits the hanging, or public execution, of brigands and highwaymen, then I definitely see Trithereon (please note my current Avatar symbol!) as doing the same!!! In general, anyone who subjugates, oppresses, or harms the common people would be ritually executed, whether by noose, sword, spear, fire, or tooth and claw by summoned beast! Let the punishment fit the crime.

-Lanthorn
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2773
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's some brainstorming:

Rao: Doves and lambs and white calves. Rao appreciates the slaying of demons and other lower planar creatures in his name.
Boccob: Scrolls, books of magic, and magic items.
Heironeous: Slaying bulls, as in the cult of Mithras, I suppose.
Hextor: Worshipers of Heironeous or other foes captured in battle.
Kord: Evil dragons, wyverns, etc.
Beory: Fruits and vegetables, see also Obad-hai, whose cult is closely related.
Istus: Silk, textiles
Incabulos: Worshipers voluntarily inflict themselves with diseases to earn their deity's favor, and/or inflict others
Lendor: Worshipers sacrifice time to their god by enduring long, tedious ceremonies that last for days or weeks, eating and drinking little during that time. Fasting in general.
Nerull: Living sentient victims, preferably, but Nerull also accepts the sacrifice of sentient, corporeal undead victims in the same manner. Vampires and ghouls may have their hearts torn out in Nerull's name, sometimes by other vampires and ghouls.
Pelor: Pelor accepts both sacrifices of meat (as Rao does) and fruits and vegetables (as Beory does).
Tharizdun: Energy-draining, freezing, paralysis, and slow starvation are common ways to sacrifice victims to He of Eternal Darkness. The quick, bloody violence favored by younger, more vibrant gods is inappropriate.
Ulaa: Worshipers sacrifice gems by burying them in sanctified chambers underground or dropping them into deep pits known to be sacred to the goddess.
Wee Jas: Worshipers sacrifice gems and magic to the Ruby Goddess.
Allitur: Scrolls
Atroa: Flowers
Beltar: Sentient victims flung into pits or entombed in caves.
Berei: An eternal flame is kept burning in her honor.
Bleredd: Specially crafted tools and weapons are melted down in a forge in his name.
Bralm: Honey, other agricultural products.
Celestian: Astrolabes, telescopes
Delleb: Books
Ehlonna: Various herbs, stags, horses
Obad-hai: Wild beasts of all kinds, living flowers, sacred kings, the losers in druidic challenges
Erythnul: Captured enemies, bulls, beasts, innocents
Fortubo: Precious stones, ore
Geshtai: Worshipers may cut themselves, sacrificing their own blood to the dry earth in exchange for water.
Joramy: Nightingales, anything that can be pitched into a volcano, also arguments may be started in order to sacrifice peace and harmony to the goddess of quarrels
Kurell: Kurell expects his share of any loot gained through illicit acts. Those who want Kurell's favor should sacrifice all their loot, especially if the crime is for the sake of vengeance rather than profit.
Lirr: Printed prose, poetry, or visual art.
Delleb: Books
Llerg: Bears and other monsters fought are sacrificed, or else those who would slay them.
Lydia: As with Lirr and Delleb.
Myhriss: Temple prostitutes sacrifice their chastity in service of their goddess.
Norebo: Those who wish the favor of the god of luck should bet all available money on something with very low odds of winning.
Olidammara: Pour out some wine or spirits, and give him his share of loot.
Phaulkon: Birds.
Pholtus: The truly faithful, or those repenting of serious crimes or heresy, blind themselves to show their dedication, ideally with permanent light spells cast on their eyes.
Phyton: Agricultural products or wild game.
Pyremius: The victims of assassinations.
Ralishaz: Ralishaz's sacrifices are objects chosen at random, as likely to be garbage as treasure, as likely to belong to someone else as the petitioner. A worshiper may swear to sacrifice the next thing they see, regardless of what it is, or draw the name of their sacrifice from a hat.
Raxivort: Shiny baubles, or the victims of raids.
Saint Cuthbert: A tithe of income, or an oath of service. Cuthbert's faithful may also wear sackcloth or vow not to bathe for a time, and shave their heads except for a fringe. Vows of poverty are common.
Sotillion: Treasure, fine food.
Syrul: Her worshipers trick their victims into being sacrificed, or into sacrificing themselves.
Telchur: Wild game either burnt or frozen in the god's honor.
Trithereon: Vows of service, so that other faithful may summon them in need.
Velnius: Birds, bulls.
Wenta: Beer, fruits, vegetables.
Xan Yae: Donations to help support her temples.
Xerbo: Fish, wealth thrown into the sea.
Zodal: Worshipers forsake vengeance in their god's name.
Iuz: Sentient victims die in agony, after prolonged torture, and their bones are used to expand their master's roads.
Wastri: Swamp creatures, demihumans.
Zagyg: As Boccob.
Zuoken: As Xan Yae.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Mempter
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jun 23, 2007
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 4:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In regards to rasgon's post, I can say with certainty that Boccob absolutely would not condone the sacrificing of magic items, if one wants to go by the info in the article featured in this Dragon issue: https://dnd.rem.uz/Dragon%20Magazine/301-350/Dragon%20Magazine%20%23338.pdf
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2773
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I considered that, but sacrifice doesn't necessarily mean destroy. It can just mean giving them to Boccob's temple. I suggested a tithe of income for St. Cuthbert's faithful, but I didn't mean they were destroying the money.

Similarly, when I suggested Delleb's followers might sacrifice books I didn't imagine them burning them.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
A-Baneful-Backfire
Journeyman Greytalker


Joined: Jun 24, 2008
Posts: 116

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do we have any canonical description of what happens to the souls/spirits of those sacrificed, and what if any consequence this can have?

One of the notions has been that the soul of the sacrificed passes to the outer realm of the deity to whom the creature was sacrificed (as opposed to going to where its alignment and beliefs would place it). Other notions include the consumption of the soul to power greater magic. This explains the revulsion among the good for the sacrifices made to evil deities. But what of the highway bandit sacrificed to Fharlanghn – would Fharlanghn even want to receive such a soul? Or is it merely a punishment effected in the name of Fharlanghn, the soul going to the evil plane to which it would otherwise belong?

What benefit to the deity occurs from the “sacrifice” of objects? Adding lore to the temple of Boccob as a sacrifice makes sense, and increases the net amount of magic, a goal of Boccob. The reduction of fine tools to uselessness however, doesn’t seem to aid Bleredd or his followers. Acquiring and maintaining those tools, however, and the resources of time, treasure and talent needed seems like the more relevant sacrifice. Perhaps melting down worn tools and reforging them to new condition is the proper sacrifice.

In some ways the sacrifice of objects goes back to a previous discussion on the days of the week, and whether Godsday was a second day of rest and reflection or a day of labor. If labor, than such labor benefits the patron deity’s cause and dogma for those deities related to some profession or occupation. Real world rituals like “christening” a ship, blessing of livestock and fields, rituals regarding the cornerstones of buildings, raising of homes and barns, etc. all come to mind as “sacrifices” of time, talent and treasure by the followers in one form or another. Perhaps Godsday is the day ones labor is sacrificed to the gods.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
jamesdglick
Grandmaster Greytalker


Joined: Jul 09, 2003
Posts: 1127
Location: Clarksville, TN

PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

NorkerMedic wrote:
The cult of Heironeous may involve the ritual slaughter of cattle before statues of the god...


-Mithra, basically (Rasgon notes). A sun god, but also worshipped as a god of justice and war. Eventually became popular in the Empire's legions. A reasonable Earth-Oerth analog.

Lanthorn wrote:
...I don't think Beory or Berei would whatsoever, but perhaps Obad-hai would permit it, especially if they are 'barbarians.'...


-Berei: Spring; Obad-Hai: Autumn. Then there's the other deities of the Old Faith. Pelor is the summer god: Animal sacrifice, maybe (see Heironeous--into the flame!), human sacrifice, definitely not. Nerull, the winter god: Yes, yes, yes!

Cebrion wrote:
I like that one. Not really a sacrifice, but punishment condoned by a god. Very suitable in this case.


...and...

A-Baneful-Backfire wrote:
...But what of the highway bandit sacrificed to Fharlanghn – would Fharlanghn even want to receive such a soul? Or is it merely a punishment effected in the name of Fharlanghn, the soul going to the evil plane to which it would otherwise belong? ...


-Where does punishment end and sacrifice begin? Not mutually exclusive, of course.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2773
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A-Baneful-Backfire wrote:
Do we have any canonical description of what happens to the souls/spirits of those sacrificed, and what if any consequence this can have?


The Book of Vile Darkness (2002) has an extensive set of rules for the sacrifice of sapient beings to evil fiends and gods (pages 26-28) but doesn't state the evil patron actually gains ownership of their souls. It says, "In a world suffused with magic, evil gods pay attention when someone makes a living sacrifice to them, and they often reward their followers for doing so. In some abstract sense, the sacrifice adds some small mote to the god's overwhelming power, and in return the evil deity is sometimes willing to grant a boon or a blessing in return."

In other words, sacrifice is similar conceptually to prayer or other forms of praise; the difference is only one of degree. Hextor likes it when you pray to him and he really likes it when you kill people in a ceremony at one of his shrines, but I think the souls of those sacrificed go to their plane of alignment. There are no special rules that prevent those sacrificed from being raised or resurrected as normal.

Peter Adkison's The Primal Order, a set of rules for the divine published by Wizards of the Coast in 1992, has guidelines for exactly how much power gods gain from different sorts of sacrifices (divine power in this system is measured in primal flux points).

The Primal Order, page 56 wrote:
The vast majority of sacrifices are relatively mundane and part of the routine worship cycle, but occasionally an especially dedicated or stupid worshiper sacrifices something extremely valuable... Sacrifices that are considered especially valuable are souls; rare materials such as gems, metals, and material magical components; and artifacts, worshipers, clergy, or minions of rival deities.


Rival worshipers--1 each
Rival ordained warriors--2 each
Rival priests--3 each
Rival minions--5 each
Rival artifacts--10 each
Rival chancellors or godlings--20 each
Enemies of the church--50 each
Rare gems or minerals--(equal to the number of digits in the monetary value, with the qualifier that the items sacrificed have to be worth at least 10% of the giver's net worth).

Note that The Primal Order does allow deities to collect the souls of those who are sacrificed to them, bleeding those souls (through torture) every day in return for primal flux. As above, Book of Vile Darkness makes no mention of this happening.

According to The Primal Order, sacrifices are typically made on a deity's holy days (so, for example, Midsummer's Day for Pelor and the Blood Moon Festival for Nerull). "This leads to why deities have holy days—so that the worshipers know when they should make their sacrifices and so the deity knows when to expect extra primal. While a chaos deity might prefer an occasional surprise, most deities would like to be able to form strategies based around the knowledge that on certain days they're likely to receive a little extra 'umph.'"

1st edition Deities & Demigods has a chart in the back (starting on page 119 in my copy, which isn't the original printing) listing the frequency and form of sacrifices expected by each deity described in the book.

Deities & Demigods wrote:
In addition, tithings and actual sacrifices should be made by a dutiful worshiper when grateful (returning from an adventure alive, for example), repentant, begging a favor (removal of famine from an area, etc.) and so on. Actual items of sacrifice may include: animals, monsters, humans (or non-humans), food or crops, items of wealth (jewelry, fine linens, rare woods, etc.), items of power (magic), incenses and perfumes, services, etc. The way these items are offered to the deity may vary greatly, but include: libation, cremation, vivisection, burial, immersion in holy water, casting into a pit, et al.


A-Baneful-Backfire wrote:
What benefit to the deity occurs from the “sacrifice” of objects?


One could ask the same of the sacrifice of non-sapient animals. Does Heironeous really need cattle? Do his spirit legions need hamburgers? What benefit to the deity occurs from any sort of worship? As the Book of Vile Darkness points out, the world is suffused with magic. The laws of magic (or, at least, the laws of fantasy) dictate that sacrifice is power. Gods gain power from veneration (yes, I know, Boccob supposedly doesn't care about this) and gain extra power if a worshiper gives up something significant to them. If someone with plenty of cattle sacrifices a bull, the deity probably doesn't benefit much more than they would from a sincerely uttered prayer. If someone sacrifices a bull of exceptional strength and beauty, or if someone sacrifices their only bull, it may be worth more.

It would be silly for me to type up the whole of the chart in Deities & Demigods, but here are some examples from it of recommended sacrifices that might be good inspiration for Oerth's gods.

Hatoru, god of wind and weather: berry juices.
Anu, god of the sky: gems (monthly).
Anshar, god of darkness: precious metals (annually).
Druaga, god of devils: humans (monthly).
Ishtar, goddess of love and war: weapons (monthly).
Dunatis, god of mountains: precious metals.
Manannan Mac Lir, god of the sea: gold.
Morrigan, goddess of war: enemy casualties (in battle).
Nuada, god of war: silver (in battle).
Oghma, god of knowledge: extension of knowledge.
Silvanus, god of nature: tree planting.
Chao Kung Ming, god of war: ritual weapons (before war).
Chih-Chiang Fyu-Ya, god of archery: golden arrows (annually).
Chih Sung-Tzu, god of rain: spilt wine (annually).
Chung Kuel, god of truth: crafted items (monthly).
No Cha, god of thieving: stolen items (monthly).
Shan Hai Ching, god of the sea: precious objects (before ocean voyages).
Huan-Ti, god of war: war prizes (monthly).
Anubis, guardian of the dead: valuables (monthly).
Apshai, god of insects: animals (annually).
Bast, goddess of cats: snakes (monthly).
Bes, god of luck: valuables (monthly).
Geb, god of earth: precious stones (monthly).
Horus, god of vengeance: precious fluids (semiannually).
Ilmatar, goddess of motherhood: crafted items (monthly).
Kiputytto, goddess of disease: gold cups (annually).
Zeus, god of air: cow (full moon).
Aphrodite, goddess of love and beauty: artistic creations (every 10 days).
Ares, god of war: ox (before battles).
Artemis, goddess of the hunt and the moon: deer (full moon).
Demeter, goddess of agriculture: seeds (annually).
Dionysus, god of wine: spilt wine (annually).
Hera, goddess of marriage: hair (monthly).
Hermes, god of thieves, liars, and gamblers: bird feathers (seldom).
Tyche, goddess of fortune: spilt wine.
Blibdoolpoolp, goddess of kuo-toa: gems, pearls, humans, lobsters (monthly).
Corellon Larethian, god of elves: beautiful objects (monthly).
Deep Sashelas, god of aquatic elves: precious natural objects.
Garl Glittergold, god of gnomes: gold (monthly).
Gruumsh, god of orcs: blood (monthly).
Hruggek, god of bugbears: blood (monthly).
Kurtulmak, god of kobolds: enemies (monthly).
Laogzed, god of troglodytes: burnt humans (annually).
Lolth, goddess of drow: enemies and riches (monthly).
Maglubiyet, god of goblins: hearts (monthly).
Moradin, god of dwarves: melted metals (monthly).
Rillifane Rallathil, god of wood elves: carved items (semiannually).
Sekolah, god of sahuagin: enemies.
Semuanya, god of lizard men: hunting prizes (monthly).
Skerrit, god of centaurs: ritual hunt, dances (monthly).
Yeenoghu, god of gnolls: blood (monthly).
Yondalla, goddess of halflings: food offering (weekly).
Inanna, goddess of love and war: artworks (monthly).
Ki, goddess of nature: burnt rams (semiannually).
Utu, god of the sun: weapons (annually).
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If we are broadening the discussion to include all manner of sacrifices, oblations, and so on--and non GH gods, here is a list in progress from my homebrew:



THE WINGED VICTRIX

The arms and armor of defeated enemies, in particular trophies gathered from chaotic or evil foes



THE SPEAKER IN STORMS

sacrifice of birds
libations of wine or oil poured into bodies of water after storms

THE FLEET MAIDEN

sacrifice of hares


THE BLIND JUDGE

eyes of beasts, consumed as part of a ritual invocation

THE GREEN CORPSE
First fruits, buried


THE PALLID DREAMER

mindaltering and/ soporific fungi and plants, consumed or smoked

THE BRUTAL MASTER
Captive enemies and rebellious slaves put to death by crushing or beating



LADY OF POISONERS

Beasts or men slain with a poisoned knife or needle-prick
herbs or weeds gathered, dried, and burned as incense
(Rank odors, not sweet smells)


THE FLAME OF ANARCHY

Arson of buildings and crops, in particular those belonging to lawful or good creatures
Holocaust of talking, thinking beings
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Cebrion
Black Hand of Oblivion
Black Hand of Oblivion


Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 3573
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not too keen on the idea of a priest of Rao getting bringing a dove/lamb/calf of peace up to the high altar...and knifing it/snapping its neck...in the name of peaceful Rao.

I'm more of a "Do no harm." sort of Rao person, I guess. Laughing

That doesn't mean I think Rao's followers are utter pacifists though. They are the staunchest of foes against anyone/anything intrinsically anathema to peace. Eradicating such foes to bring peace would be a last resort, but they won't shy away from such a responsibility once all other avenues have been exhausted. Of course with some things, like lower planar nasties and other inherently vile things, there is only one recourse.
_________________
- Moderator/Admin/Member -
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2773
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My view is that a crook isn't the symbol of vegetarians. Ancient worshipers of Rao were herdsmen, perhaps in contrast to Pelor's settled cultivators of grain. Not aggressive against humanity or demihumanity, certainly, but accustomed to slaughtering animals for meat and accustomed to giving their deity his portion. Some of the most ancient rites persist, especially when the moons are new and they pray to their god to restore light to the world.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the idea of Rao's cult sacrificing a sheep during lunar rites, Rasgon.

Nothing suggests to me that Rao's cult is vegetarian.

But it could be a point of divergence in custom. Many worshippers of Rao follow the traditional ways, including the lunar sacrifice of sheep.
The custom is especially strong in rural areas and borderlands.

In Mitrik, a minority sect holds that the old animal sacrifice (quick, humane slaughter followed by immolation) can be replaced by burning a vellum scroll on which are written prayers of the faithful.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
jamesdglick
Grandmaster Greytalker


Joined: Jul 09, 2003
Posts: 1127
Location: Clarksville, TN

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rasgon wrote:

Peter Adkison's The Primal Order, a set of rules for the divine published by Wizards of the Coast in 1992, has guidelines for exactly how much power gods gain from different sorts of sacrifices (divine power in this system is measured in primal flux points)...

Rival worshipers--1 each
Rival ordained warriors--2 each
Rival priests--3 each
Rival minions--5 each
Rival artifacts--10 each
Rival chancellors or godlings--20 each
Enemies of the church--50 each
Rare gems or minerals--(equal to the number of digits in the monetary value, with the qualifier that the items sacrificed have to be worth at least 10% of the giver's net worth)...


-IIRC, Dragon Magazine #52 had an article that included something like this. One of EG Gygax's Sorcerer's Scroll articles also had something like this, with the value of the sacrifice multiplied by the level/hit dice of the victim.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Cebrion
Black Hand of Oblivion
Black Hand of Oblivion


Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 3573
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not sacrificing animals doesn't mean one is a vegetarian, and the crook is not a tool for killing, but one for guiding. Not exactly light-handed on the symbolism is the crook. Wink
_________________
- Moderator/Admin/Member -
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rasgon
GreySage


Joined: Aug 03, 2001
Posts: 2773
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 7:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a tool specifically for shepherds, and I think it's likely that if Rao adopted that iconography, it must have been because he knew his followers would understand it (i.e. there were many shepherds among them). Animal sacrifice seems appropriate among such a people. Context is key here: a shepherd's crook doesn't kill in itself, but it doesn't exist in a vacuum.

I could see some followers of Rao as Jainist types committed to harming no animals unless strictly necessary, but I think that would be a later theological development and not universal.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
NorkerMedic
Apprentice Greytalker


Joined: Jul 30, 2017
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Fri Aug 18, 2017 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like Rasgon's idea about ancient pastoralists worshipping Rao and ancient agriculturalists worshipping Pelor.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
jamesdglick
Grandmaster Greytalker


Joined: Jul 09, 2003
Posts: 1127
Location: Clarksville, TN

PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2017 6:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

NorkerMedic wrote:
I like Rasgon's idea about ancient pastoralists worshipping Rao and ancient agriculturalists worshipping Pelor.


No sun, no crops.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Cebrion
Black Hand of Oblivion
Black Hand of Oblivion


Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 3573
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2017 11:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rasgon wrote:
It's a tool specifically for shepherds, and I think it's likely that if Rao adopted that iconography, it must have been because he knew his followers would understand it (i.e. there were many shepherds among them). Animal sacrifice seems appropriate among such a people. Context is key here: a shepherd's crook doesn't kill in itself, but it doesn't exist in a vacuum.

I could see some followers of Rao as Jainist types committed to harming no animals unless strictly necessary, but I think that would be a later theological development and not universal.

I am not advocating that either. Raoans can eat whatever they want. It is the shedding of blood at all as a religious right that seems inappropriate for Rao, not that an animal is being killed (though there is no explicit animal tie to Rao either - see below). The thread is about accepting sacrifices, and there is a big difference between a accepting a sacrifice (i.e. a killing "in the moment" of a religious rite) and accepting an offering ("Here's a veal shank for Rao and his servants, Father Zen.") I just don't see Rao as having blood sacrifice as a feature of his religious ceremonies. It is appropriate for other faiths though.

Citing the crook as a tool for herding, and herders generally eat the animals they are herding, so "crook = animal sacrifice" is beyond a stretch. Rao's crook no more equates symbolically with "I kill/eat animals that I herd, and my religion's symbol is tool for herding, so my religion practices animal sacrifice" anymore than Zilchus' symbol equates to "I kill/eat animals that I buy, and my religion's symbol is hands clutching a bag of gold, so my religion practices animal sacrifice." It is simply not what either symbol stands for in any way whatsoever, which is the point. I do not see Rao as a god who receives blood sacrifices of anything. I see him as a god who receives (non-blood sacrifice) offerings. Offerings are meant to help the church in a manner pleasing to the deity, and that could include offerings of food in the form of an animal, but without also including any actual blood sacrifice during the act of making the offering.

Spiritually speaking, Rao is getting nothing from the purposeful killing of an animal during a religious rite, while Erythnul, demon lords, etc. are very much getting something from the purposeful killing (the more gruesome, the better) of almost anything during their religious rites. Even nature gods can draw a symbolic/pathetic link from the sacrifice of an animal to the circle of life, or subsistence of life, but there is no similar link for Rao. Even gods who use weapons as symbols use them almost solely as symbols of might, with usually no indication of blood sacrifice of any kind despite the fact that the application of such symbols is to mete out death in some form. For example, I don't see Heironeous using blood sacrifices in any rite, but it might actually be a real religious rite for clergy of Tritherion to put to death an object of retribution, though this is more a final punishment than a blood sacrifice (poh-tay-toh, poh-tah-toh? Laughing). I just like there to be a good reason for most things, and in this case there really isn't a very good reason to link blood sacrifice to Rao.

Anyways, how about Blibdoolpoolp? Perhaps her clerics wear giant lobster claws and slowly cut apart bound sacrifices with their razor sharp edges, then feed the still twitching chunks to followers/themselves/favored pets.
_________________
- Moderator/Admin/Member -
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Canonfire Forum Index -> World of Greyhawk Discussion All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

Jump to:  

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Canonfire phpBB2 theme by Jakob Persson (http://www.eddingschronicles.com).
Powered by phpBB © 2001 phpBB Group
All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Stone textures by Patty Herford
Ported for PHP-Nuke by nukemods.com
Forums ©


Canonfire! is a production of the Thursday Group in assocation with GREYtalk and Canonfire! Enterprises

Contact the Webmaster.  Long Live Spidasa!

PHP-Nuke Copyright © 2005 by Francisco Burzi. This is free software, and you may redistribute it under the GPL. PHP-Nuke comes with absolutely no warranty, for details, see the license.
Page Generation: 0.28 Seconds