New Powers

From World of Charun

Bhaaru, the Head-Hunter
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Bhaaru, the Head-Hunter

Contents

What makes a god?

Forces, planar powers, or “gods”, that appear or interact with mortals are often ancient or alien entities whom some conceive as evil because their purposes and actions are self-interested, usually mirroring the mortal minds and souls. Often they are ancient and powerful creatures of the old, or beings from the outer planes. Their priests are granted powers through the being, often in return for sacrifices and other deeds that feed the creatures needs. Some of these ancient creatures gain worship through fear, where mortals pay them respect and sacrifices in an attempt to keep the “god’s” wrath away from them.

Mortals seem to need greater powers to worship, and the more visible the power is the more real it is experienced. A village may thus worship a gargantuan spider dwelling in a deep cave nearby the village. The spider may be a mindless insect, but a sect could be built around it with powerless priests conducting sacrifices to the monster. These sacrifices would probably keep the spider fed, thus keeping it from hunting the villagers and their cattle. Thus the villagers would keep the “god’s” wrath from them through sacrifices – a proof of the monster's divinity. It must be said, however, that there is no immediate moral dividing line between the morality of the New Powers as a group, and that of the Old Powers. Amrun of the Sceptre is a clearly moral New Power, whereas Zimara, Garagor, and especially Kiazzar are entities who are not only immoral, they are cosmically malevolent beyond mortal comprehension.

There are several New Powers that enjoy the worship of mortals in the Fourth Age - beings that are not real gods and unable to grant any forms of divine power to their followers. There is a tremendous difference, however, between the New Powers and the Old Gods that tends to make the newcomers attractive to humans: they are understandable. The Old Gods are an amalgamation of abstract philosophical concept and motive power beyond mortal comprehension -- they are distant and poorly-personified. The New Powers, on the other hand, are great intelligences who exist in the same fundamental realities as their worshippers-- though they are (at least!) an order of magnitude more powerful than any mortal, they can enter the mortal realm. One can, in fact, if one is very fortunate, talk to them. Some of them are, indeed, willing to enter into agreements that benefit both parties, and which offer arcane powers in return for services rendered.

This tilts the balance of both power and culture in Charun away from the Mórail and towards the Humans and Saurians. As faith has changed, so have labels - the ancient Mórail encouraged the term "sorceror,"a term with purely evil connotations, for those worshipping the New Powers. As time has gone on, the more neutral term "mystic" has become preferred, and now the former term is found only among old writings and occasionally proferred as an insult by devout Mórail.


The Law of the Mortal World

Up till the end of the Third Age it was not possible for outsiders to enter the mortal world, with the exception of lesser creatures forced in through summoning rituals for a brief period of time. If killed, the summoned outsider would simply be sent back to it's plane of origin, and be banished from the mortal world for a period of time. Mythology claims that it was a divine seal forged by Thilias in the shape of a sword, the Truthbringer, for his brother Brunir the Overlord that hindered those wishing entry. It is further said in the myths that it was the destruction of this sword that partly led to the end of the Third Age, along with opening the gates to the mortal world. Others simply claim that the old myths have no bearing and there are other reasons not comprehensible by mortals behind the arrival of the New Powers.

In the Fourth Age it is possible for powerful entities to enter the mortal world at will. The transition is damaging enough to kill a weak creature, and drain a powerful one. Entering the mortal world is a dangerous task, since an outsider entering at free will can be slain and permanently killed - even if away from one's plane of origin, unlike those summoned through magic. This in combination with that travelling back can not be done immediatly, since the strength needed to do so must be regained, results in most of the new powers only appearing in secure locations. They are known to appear before their followers, usually when called by a devoted priest in a well-guarded temple, where they can feed on their worship and safely enjoy any sacrifices while they have their strength restored for the jorney back.


Worship

There were no ancient traditions of worship when the new powers entered the mortal world. Most cults, temples and covens had their own ways of worship, often decided by the leader, or high priest (usually to suit his own needs and agendas). Today, however, a millenia later the most prominent faiths are organised and traditions have been established.


Granted Powers

Some of the New Powers are able to grant the mystics functioning as their priests arcane powers. These powers are detailed in this section:

More about: Mystical Powers


New Powers

There are thousands and yet thousands existing and potential new powers in the universe. Some are still unheard of, while others have worldwide followings. The one thing diffrentiating between lesser, intermediate and greater new powers is fame, not the number of followers or their might - but simply how well known their existence is. They are all detailed below:


Lesser New Powers

There are many potential new powers that haven't yet been approached by mortals, while others may have merely one worshipper feeding its demands in return for his magical power. It is impossible to list all those thousands here and it is alright for a player to create his own master and its traits. The one thing all of them have in common is that their existence isn't known to anyone (yet), besides to the worshipper. A player character choosing a lesser new power is to pick the "Obscure Deity" entry during the character creation process.


Intermediate New Powers

There are many intermediate new powers that rarely have large followings or temples - usually being limited to small cults or individual worshippers. Their existence isn't common knowledge, but rather something that is met by a "you said who?" if talked about to regular people.

More about: Intermediate New Powers


Greater New Powers

This section lists the most prominent new powers. They are the most (in)famous of the new powers, and even though some of them haven't got huge followings, the chances are that most people encountered have heard of them. Information about them is fairly easily gained through spending some time in an average library containing religious litterature.

More about: Greater New Powers


Saurian New Powers

Saurian religion dates to primordial times. It is mysterious, ancient and revere deities not found with other races. It is only in the Fourth Age, however, that Saurian worshippers have found their prayers to be answered.

More about: Saurian New Powers



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