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The Prophet Sanraan|
Estelsoor is a schismatic religion from Estellon, meaning it split of from Estellon long ago in history. As early as the foundation of the Allorn Empire nearly 20,000 years prior to the modern day, there was a conflict between Talea and Sanraan, her younger brother, over who had the highest legitimacy to claim hegemony over the Elves. Talea enforced a rule of strength, military arms, and magical means, while Santaan preferred a rule of law, politial scheming, and peace. Because of its far stronger military element, Talea's Estellon faith won out over Sanraan's Estelsoor, the followers of which were expelled to the Western Firelands which would later become the Suvial homeland. Sanraan himself was also banished from the Allorn Empire, though he chose to try and stay as close to the Empire as possible by settling on its border, having to move further away each time as Talea marched further west. When exactly Sanraan re-united with his followers in the Firelands is unclear, though it likely occurred before Talea entered her long slumber, as a decision was made not to prosecure the followers of Estelsoor in the Firelands due to his supposed disappearance. Accounts differ here between Estellon and Estelsoor faithful, the former claiming Sanraan died of shame and inability to claim the Allorn Empire as his. Estelsoor worshipers however have a different version of events, one that dictates that as soon as he came to the Firelands to formalize the dogma under his prophetic vision, that he sailed on a raft to a land "far West of Dragons", because the Estelsoor faithful were frequently harassed by Armina of Dragon worshiper, her followers, and the Red Hunters of Caius. Sure enough, several years after Sanraan departed, all Red Hunter attacks ceased, and peace reigned in the Firelands between the Dragon and Estelsoor faithful to this day. Estelsoor was prosecuted no further than the western borders of the Allorn Empire as it aided the Allorn leaders' narrative to project weakness and a pitiful existence onto those wretches in the west. It both discouraged looking into Estelsoor dogma by Allorn citizens, but also lent itself to their legend of superiority. As such, the Estelsoor faithful were able to survive most of Allorn history with minimal contact with the Allorn Empire, and with no natural enemies in their homelands. The Suvial Elves as they would eventually become known would thrive to even greater heights after the Cataclysm, when the Allorn Empire collapsed, and theirs stayed intact. In the modern day, Estelsoor is a majority religion of the Suvial, though some other Elven minorities have also started following it, especially since the collapse of the Allorn Empire and the revived Allorn Empire's tyrannical approach to minorities has lent some credence to Sanraan's ideological superiority over Talea's.
Estelsoor is a Religion centered around the idea of inner balance, and one that identifies itself strictly in contrast to Estellon, which is very much perfection focused, while Estelsoor is less about what value others place on the self, but what peace with one's own internal demons one can achieve, and then to use that inner balance to apply it to the rest of the world also. Unlike Estellon, Estelsoor is very much focused on virtues.
- Bravery: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to be brave in the face of adversity, but not to use bravery as a vehicle for violence and repression of other free souls.
- Calm: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to be calm and analytical, to act in good conscience with all known information, and to admit wrongdoing to self (but not others).
- Temperance: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to be temperate with their desires, for it is in desires and the vices that the corruption of self lies.
- Ambition: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to be ambitious politically, socially, and mentally, to create the most tranquil and cohesive version of themselves.
- Diligence: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to be vigilant for signs of inner corruption in others, and to steer them from the path of temptation, lust, gluttony and laziness.
- Forgiveness: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to turn the other cheek, even when facing the abuse of the Estellon in history. Let them assume their superiority with glee.
- Charitable: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to be charitable, for only the giving soul can find inner peace when it is not deaf to the suffering of others.
- Deceitful: Estelsoor as a religion has survived by playing the weaker part of a culture war. Lying for self preservation is as such permitted to outsiders.
- Harmony: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to achieve harmony with their desires, to temper their vices with knowledge and awareness, and praise their skills with humility.
- Synchronization: Estelsoor faithful are demanded to find a balance between the Void and Exist, and also to serve that balance in the interest of harmony in society.
- Sanctuary: Estelsoor faith prescribes a patronizingly protecting ideology to its followers which preaches the idea that the Nelfin are somehow uniquely more capable of guiding the world than others.
- Cahalsar: Estelsoor faithful are repulsed by the Cahal, and find the Cahalic Affliction an expression of the most debased over-reliance on Exist Magic that can exist, aiming to cure them.
- Narrative: Estelsoor is a religion that starts with Estel creating everything in the eyes of the Estelsoor faithful, followed by Estel birthing her children through immaculate conception, after which she fell asleep, dreaming the other Estelsoor (and Estellon) Pantheon into existence. Unlike the Estellon Pantheon, the Estelsoor Pantheon is not a challenge for the faithful, but an example to live by, and also the guardians of the pillars of creation (Water, Fire, Air, Stone, Life, Cosmos, Death). The Estellon Pantheon is acknowledged by Estelsoor faithful as "divine", but not their version of divine, they simply exist to serve Talea, who is a misguided Prophetess.
- Canon Evil: Canon evil in Estelsoor are actually the Theurgist Spirits. Spirits are believed to endear one's soul to the vices, to induce lust and adultery, gluttony and overeating, greed and cheating, laziness and wroth. To many Estelsoor faithful, capturing and cleansing the world of Spirits is a way of harmonizing the world by removing the seducing aspect of vice from the population. Kathar in such a sense are the worst servants of evil.
- Identity: Estelsoor has no real concept of sex or gender, nor does it have a view on sexual orientation. If anything, Estelsoor encourages the faithful to experiment with all these kinds of things, and generally just kind of do whatever they feel like. Though less from a self-indulgent angle, this is instead because gender-identity and self realization are part of inner harmony.
- Conversion: Estelsoor are discouraged from converting away, but the faithful are generally forgiving to those who do, and are also forgiving to those who come back. There is fittingly a term for those who are "seduced" to Estellon in moments of anger or self doubt called a "Wayward Wanderer", who should always be welcomed back when they have fallen to regret and self realization, as the process is an admirable one that should be supported.
- Sins & Taboo: Estelsoor Sins are invariably the opposites of the Tenets described above, though there is no real formal punishment for Sinning but the fear of not reaching inner Harmony, as only those with inner Harmony are able to achieve a state of Nirvaan, and can pass into the afterlife of Estelsoor (or be reborn to try again). The fact that Suvial currently cannot die because of Avinla's petrification, is a hugely important issue in their religion, and causes ongoing anxiety about the state of their inner Harmony.
Gods and Goddesses
The Pantheon of Estelsoor were dreamed up by Estel, but considered more authentic and valid than Estellon Gods because they chose to follow Sanraan. Estel is worshiped through the worship of her gods and goddesses, however the prophet Sanraan is not. Sanraan always depicted himself more as a mentor or a teacher, and rejected direct worship, instead requesting that worship was aimed at the gods and goddess who were more powerful and capable of acting as symbols to his ideological beliefs. Unlike the Estellon Gods, the Estelsoor Gods are still alive and among mortals, with the exception of Avinla who sacrificed herself to protect her people, and in doing so cursed them to be denied death and the afterlife. Avinla is considered far more important and more powerful than the other gods and goddess, so in that manner she can also be seen as the Queen of the Estelsoor pantheon. Estelsoor does not have a formal priesthood, in fact because of the near forever presence of their entire pantheon, there is very little room for actual priests. Instead, Estelsoor has so called Diviners, people who are intimately familiar with the ideologies of Sanraan, and are able to skillfully argue their points, or re-enforce faith and spirituality. They might even spend a lot of time around temples to help others send offerings, or historically take care of the dead, though this has proven a pointless task given recent events. It is common for the faithful to worship the whole pantheon where appropriate. There is no real concept of patron gods.
Avinla, Mother of Fire
- Identity: Avinla is the mother of the Suvial Altalar, the patron Goddess of the lands of fire, the creator of the essence of life, and the gatekeeper of the afterlife.
- Themes: Avinla's strongest theme is fire and magma, though her underlying themes are preparedness, contemplation, analysis and execution, and notably of state espionage and subterfuge.
- Depictions: Avinla is always regarded as Prophet Sanraan's second in command, who led the other Gods and Goddesses in shepherding the faithful in their new homeland.
- Worship: Avinla worship is performed through the rites of the fire scale, which is to summon (or create) fire in a bowl and dance ritually around it in song and prayer.
- Interactions: Avinla never once directly interfered with the lives of the Suvial, but often provided crucial information that the Suvial lacked in state building.
- Worship House: Avinla's temple is the House without Shadows, an insanely well lit temple with eternally burning flames as large as Unionist Temples on the roof in the Suvial homeland.
- Altar: Avinla's Temple is usually a rose-quartz tablet or table upon which the fire bowl is placed, usually low to the ground, and surrounded by reed woven mats.
- Cult: Avinla's Cult are the Sun-Star Seekers, who believe ancient Seraph knowledge is capable of un-freezing their Goddess and returning her to her people, while also ending the Kathar.
- Current: Avinla did not disappear following the Cataclysm, but was petrified after decades of begging from the Suvial to cease the Void-Outs, halting the last and final Void-Out.
Amanur, Singer of Death
- Identity: Amanur is the father of the Suvial people, the patron god of death and the dangers of the ocean. He does not govern the afterlife, but deal death to send mortals to it.
- Themes: Amanur's themes are the deep dark oceans, and all living things within, predators, carnivores, natural disaster, monsters and the wide undiscovered unknown.
- Depictions: Amanur is always depicted with his trident, and his three arms, one for each cause of death: Natural, Disaster, and Beast. Unnatural death in violence is not acknowledged.
- Worship: Amanur's worship is done by setting paper craft boats into the rivers and oceans with offerings of fruit and flowers, depending on the wealth of the person giving offerings.
- Interactions: Amanur lives in the Oracle of Serattap, at the mouth of the Indumaar River, where he steers the oceans and fair winds around the Suvial homeland to keep oceans calm.
- Worship House: Amanur's largest temple is the Indumaar River Temple, where the faithful bathe themselves in his protective waters, and thousands of flowers drift downstream daily.
- Altar: Amanur's shrines are always built on the side of water, usually with a staircase leading into the water to perform all kinds of rituals or offers to the blue deep.
- Cult: Amanur's cult is called the Cult of the Drowned, who have a habitual dislike of Morrlond and his Nautalar and Daphalar, combating them as corruption of the seas.
- Current: Amanur still remains at the Oracle of Serattap, and is instrumental to ensure that the frequent earthquakes and eruptions don't cause tsunamis in the Suvial lands.
Anusayaar, Weaver of Stars
- Identity: Anusayaar is the creator of all things in the cosmos that do not belong to life and the sea, the creator of the stars and the Celestial Bodies and the Sun.
- Themes: Anusayaar's themes are the stars, the cosmos, the moon and the sun, truth, awareness, honesty, but also metaphorical aspects of peace and beauty.
- Depictions: Anusayaar's depictions always importantly show the starry night sky in her hair, while she carries the starcaster on her torso, with which the stars are made.
- Worship: Anusayaar worship is done mostly through the act of celestial reading, trying to read fortunes from the positions of the stars, and the movements of celestial bodies.
- Interactions: Anusayaar rides across the sky on her chariot of flaming horses, heralding the sun-rise and sun-down, clearing bad weather on the land and soothing volcanos.
- Worship House: Anusayaar's largest temple is the Temple of Starsight, a massive complex that has thousands of years of celestial recordings and data stored in it.
- Altar: Anusayaar's shrines are usually built on top of mountains, a pile of carefully arranged stones. In Regalia, cairns made by Old Gods faithful are used.
- Cult: Anusayaar's Cult is the Cult of the Forever Stone, one that is obsessed in trying to figure out the nature of Crystallum in Astronomy learning.
- Current: Anusayaar is still seen, every day, twice, as her chariot races across the sky in the Suvial lands, none have ever reached her as high up as she is.
Amondi, Child of Spring
- Identity: Amondi is the manifestation of spring, the guardian of nature, the grower of plants and responsible for the fertility of the Suvial lands.
- Themes: Amondi's themes are butterflies, roses, flowers, abundance, joy, festivities and in particular, exceedingly long hair below the waist as a sign of fertility.
- Depictions: Amondi is always depicted in a manner that describes her as "fae", even if this term has no literal meaning in the Suvial language or Estelsoor faith.
- Worship: Amondi worship is done through the processions of spring, which involves dancing, dress-up, and music, while holding a procession in nature to celebrate it.
- Interactions: Amondi frequently interacted with the faithful, providing them a bounty of the land to herald a good year, and offerings of mercy during bad years.
- Worship House: Amondi's largest Temple is the Grove of Dew Plenty, the largest open-air temple that has a large Yanar and even Maquixtl population residing.
- Altar: Amondi's shrines are usually overgrown mossy cobble structures in the forest, which the faithful believe house the Fae of the forest and plantlife.
- Cult: Amondi's cult is called the Cult of Evergrowth, believing in the need for a harmonious living with nature, and nature merging with architecture.
- Current: Amondi occasionally still shows up in the Suvial lands, but is in deep sorrow, for the loss of nature from the Void-Outs into an apathetic melancholy.
Yasho, Harpy of Summer
- Identity: Yasho is the manifestation of summer, the mother of all birds and avian things, and temperance of the summer heat in the lands of Fire.
- Themes: Yasho's themes are awareness, knowledge, insight, understanding and the sciences and natural world. Her feathers supposedly contain infinite knowledge.
- Depictions: Yasho is always depicted with her large feathered wings and the crown of the avian animalia, with the sun close at hand or behind her.
- Worship: Yasho worship is done by capturing doves or other birds, caring for them, whispering them prayers, and then releasing them in the open air.
- Interactions: Yasho has frequently assisted the Suvial with state matters, guiding their hand through the unknown, but has been more reserved as of late.
- Worship House: Yasho's largest Temple is the House of Sanraan, the last place in the Suvial homeland he called home, now empty save for its guardian.
- Altar: Yasho's shrines are usually dream catchers shaped like the sun, decorated with bird feathers and hung in a window from which it can see the sun.
- Cult: Yasho's cult is the Sirhidra Cult, which fanatically tries to physically revive the Avarr, thinking it will bring them closer to Yasho.
- Current: Yasho still resised in the House of Sanraan, but she does not permit anyone to enter, only occasionally blessing offerings by the door.
Maya, Ceremony of Autumn
- Identity: Maya is the manifestation of autumn, the ruler of ceremony and protocol, and the manifestation of the cycle of decay and aging in the land.
- Themes: Maya's themes are formality and class, the social order and divisions in society, and policing the right and freedoms of the people to the law.
- Depictions: Maya is always depicted with her feathered crown of justice, as she is an arbitrator and protector of legality in Estelsoor.
- Worship: Maya worship is usually done by invoking the incantation or blessings of Maya before engaging in stately or bureaucratic work for good fortune.
- Interactions: Maya was extremely intensive early on during the forming of the Suvial state(s), but currently only acts as a Supreme Court for the Suvial.
- Worship House: Maya's largest Temple is the Supreme Court of Garabaal, which doubles as the Supreme Court and final arbitrator building for the Suvial.
- Altar: Maya doesn't have any formal shrines, though it is common to stamp Maya's seal onto documents written by Maya's faithful in the shape of her crown.
- Cult: Maya's cult is the Cult of Justice, which is a group of law-obsessed fanatics who fret over the correct interpretation and execution of the law.
- Current: Maya still resides in the Court of Garabaal, and is the final arbitrator of court trials sent up to her when mortal courts cannot decide.
Sagara, Mountain of Winter
- Identity: Sagara is the manifestation of Winter, the lord of the passing time, the knower of regret and loss, and the soother of anguish and defeat.
- Themes: Sagara's overwhelming theme is the contemplation of winter, and soothing anxiety and mental troubles with guidance and mentorship.
- Depictions: Sagara is always depicted as perhaps the largest Elf that ever lived, he is truly colossal, and as tall as a mountain seen from afar.
- Worship: Sagara worship is done through group or solo hiking trips up mountains to contemplate on life or the past year, and reach the inner self.
- Interactions: Sagara roamed the Suvial lands frequently, seeking out communities locked in grief, to help them overcome and move past their loss.
- Worship House: Sagara's largest Temple was destroyed in one of the Void-Outs that he survived, but it destroyed his massive cavern home.
- Altar: Sagara's shrines double as Anusayaar's shrines usually, who is often depicted as his compatriot, stargazing while seated on his shoulders.
- Cult: Sagara's Cult is the Cult of Forever Sworn, who travel the land as ascetic monks to try and give mental release and peace to those suffering.
- Current: Sagara was frightened so by the Void-Outs that he has abandoned his walking days, residing purely in the most northern of mountain chains.
Arken have a special place in Estelsoor faith, not as actual gods, but more like demi-gods. Though, it is important to note that Estelsoor faithful don't just do whatever Arken want them to, there is some subtext involved. Arken are perfect expressions of the Void and Exist, and as such are also very pure expressions of much of the Magic which the Estelsoor faithful are usually reliant on. However, Arken are also responsible for many Spirits, and on their own imperfect expressions of over-reliance on one over the other. Essentially, they express disharmony in their very existence. It is by this fact that the Estelsoor faithful try and encourage, if not directly lead (and sometimes even deceive) Arken into working with Arken of the polar opposite dimension. History is littered with Arken working together on specific smaller projects, and the Estelsoor faithful consider their ability to somehow create the circumstances in which this happens a divine inspiration, and the most harmonious expression of Void and Exist togetherness. Estelsoor faithful would not throw themselves at Arken to try and please them, but would try to work to gain some level of trust and familiarity and good rapport to try and influence them into co-operation with other Arken of a different Dimensional Alignment.
- The Avinla Temple in Regalia is often doubled as a general worship place for Estelsoor. Despite Estelsoor's heavy Suvial coding, it is in fact not Suvial exclusive. Estelsoor does not put one specific Elf race as more important than the others.
- Estellon priests and adherents alike tend to depict Estelsoor as a very lazy and inactive religion, and to a point this is correct. Estelsoor faithful spend a lot of time meditating, self reflecting, and talking about their issues, all things which do not lead to a betterment of skill and ability which the Estellon faithful praise.
- Avinla's petrification being a shocking and troubling event cannot be understated. There is a general urgency among all faithful to undo the petrification even if they know the Void-Outs could continue. At the same time, many also feel entirely powerless to affect the situation, and as such try to just forget about it.
MonMarty on 03/21/2023.|
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