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Religion in Allansia

To the average denizen of Allansia the argument of whether or not they believe that the gods exist is moot, so far as they are concerned they do. More importantly the gods do not care whether people believe in them or not, they are all part of the whole of Allanas, and as such have their assigned roles to play. It is this characteristic that makes Allansia what it is, the gods do not crave attention as this is the way that Allanas made them. The gods restrict their activities to their own area of concern, and leave each other pretty much alone.

The religious system in Allansia is a personal thing, people will tend to follow the deity most suitable to their own lifestyle and situation. As all of the gods are in fact parts of Allanas herself, it is common for a particular individual to follow more than one of the gods at any one time. However they tend to have one god that they turn to frequently, usually the one that is close to their own personality or profession.

As most of the gods do not crave the attention of Allansia’s denizens, there is little rigid worship. Instead people give their praise only when needed, and give thanks when they feel the need to do so. Their method of giving praise can vary from one person to the next, it depends on the individual and their customs. So someone might not say a prayer before a meal in their home. However after walking through a desert, and finding food they may spend several hours thanking all the gods, or perhaps those who they feel are directly involved.

Due to the very personal relationship between the individual and the gods there is little centralised worship. This gives rise to small groups with similar ideals or goals and this has given rise to the priesthood, a collection of devotees of one of the gods. There is however a tendency for people to group together when praying, even to different gods. This has given rise to the construction of buildings or monuments for this purpose, these take many different forms.

Creation

The basic creation story for Allansia is that Allanas created the land, the sea, the sky, the heavens and finally other gods, to fill the land with creatures, these gods being the gods of nature. After the other gods had finished their creations Allanas was disappointed at their lack of free will. So she created creatures imbuing them with free will and intelligence. Due to their free will, the creations of Allanas were able to cause suffering and pain to one another and from this more gods were born. To give her creations' guidance Allanas created the gods of emotion. It was with the help of the gods of emotion and nature her creations threw off their association with these new gods.

The new gods that were in part influenced by Allansia’s denizens also gained a little of their free will, and their dreams and desires. So they grew less timid when people began to follow them, rewarding those who strayed from Allanas into their service. They found that as they gained more loyal followers they reached greater power, they built their forces and bided their time. So was orchestrated the only massive war the face of Allansia has ever seen. After years of battle in the heavens and the earth, Allanas managed to neutralise these evil gods. She was, however, unable to destroy them completely, and so they still live and give power to any who will accept it.

The afterlife

Whilst everybody knows the gods exist and that there is some form of afterlife, nobody knows precisely what this actually is. The range of theories is limitless, but the most popular one being that you become an aspect of one god or another. Due to the personal nature of religion in Allansia, many people believe many things.


The gods of Allansia

Allanas: Queen of the gods.
Allanas is the Queen and mother of the lesser gods, it was she who created the world. She created the gods of nature to populate what she had created, starting with forests, then moving on to the birds and beasts. It was Allanas herself who set down the first peoples of the earth. Creating them from within herself, and giving then the intelligence that the lesser gods were incapable of endowing their own creations. It was due to these that her peoples could be truly different from the beasts that came before them, and so came the gods of hate, pain and suffering. To give her creations' guidance, then came the Gods of her peoples, the gods of emotions.

The gods of nature

Tarsalis: God of Trees.
Tarsalis is strong, timeless and patient. The forests he created are made up of thousands of his creations, giving home to the beasts and birds as well as many plants and even some of the creations of Allanas.

Arlan: God of Plants.
Not as mature as Tarsalis, Arlan is almost flighty in comparison. Her creations cover every part of the world, from the most common of grass to the most beautiful of flower, all plants show something of her.

Herne: God of Beasts of the Land and Air.
Herne is the mighty hunter, the powerful runner, and clean kill. The beasts were created to fill part of the emptiness that was left, once the land had been created.

Zenas: God of Water and Water creatures.
Zenas is both the running river, the rippling pool and the open sea. Zenas created the creatures of the river and sea, giving also a home away from home to some of Herne’s creations

The gods of spirit

Narwain: God of Love
Narwain is the fairest god of all, not beautiful by any standards, but wholesome of face and pure of mind. It is she that helps separate the creation of Allanas from those of Herne, by allowing them to fall in love.

Mercil: God of Truth and Honour.
Mercil is responsible for the drive of Truth within the goddesses' creations, their need to not only have honesty in their dealings, but truth to their surroundings. A follower of Mercil may be a judge, a great scientific thinker or equally a knight.

Mira: God of Art and Beauty.
Whether a painting, music or craftsmanship Mira sees beauty in all things made in the heart, and expressed with the soul. It is she that gives the wish and ability to create things of beauty to the creations of Allanas.

Fenris: God of Glory.
It is Fenris alone amongst the gods that gives her people the need to compete, and equally tell others of their accomplishments. Whether their accomplishment be the best crop in the village or their triumph over a great foe.

Leone: God of Mercy.
It is Leone that is responsible for the health and happiness of all of her creations. Leone is by far one of the most active gods, with his faithful being present in most cities offering their services to all.

Aspects

Each of the gods has what are called aspects. These aspects are parts of the god, and the aspects are their hands in the world. The power of an aspect is somewhat random, but the more pressing the task, and the closer to a place of power for that god that they are encountered, the more powerful they will be. The form an aspect might take is similarly random, but will always be linked to the task that brought it to Allansia.

The appearance of one of these aspects is generally rare, but they are revered for their religious significance, especially by those who feel closer to the god of that aspect. Aspects are frequently distinguishable from each other and may be seen or associated with a person or place. If in these cases the aspect remains on Allansia for extended periods the aspect may well be named and referred to by the local populace. Frequently more powerful aspects gain greater meaning of their own, and act as patrons to many activities and professions. The names of such higher aspects, and their function, can frequently vary drastically from one area to another. It is advised that characters select any higher aspects they may hold, and name them as they see fit based on their purpose. Higher aspects are given power by their continued connection with Allansia, and as such they may become slightly autonomous from their parent god.

The gods of ‘evil’

These gods were created by Allanas, in response of the actions of her creations. These gods crave the attention that other gods see little use for, and so those wishing to gain their favour use complex rituals and prayer intended to please them.

Eldarnis: God of Pain.
Bitter and twisted Eldarnis is now only concerned with causing pain, by whatever means necessary. Eldarnis favours the suffering of the creations of Allanas most of all.

Sheras: God of Hate.
She is the one that causes Man to hate Man, for her own goals. Sheras can cause the best of friends to quarrel and fight if this is her whim, she of course revels in this.

Meya: God of Despair.
Meya revels in fear and hopelessness, he is happiest when all those who would oppose him are fearful of his power and unable to act, petrified by their own fear.

The gods of evil, unlike the other gods, have no real aspects in this world. They do however have their devoted followers, whom they reward with immortality, giving them new forms when the ones with which Allanas blessed them cease to function, effectively becoming undead. Their followers are frequently made powerful by their gods, being given abilities beyond the normal individual, such as the ability to create undead, summon strange beings, or other powers.


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