Thursday, February 27, 2014

Cleric Sage Studies III

This is only two more studies, but the secret with these things is not to push too hard and become drained.  It is exhausting creative work to come up with a framework for study after study, and between all the classes with sage skills I have a lot of this to do.


Amateur:  define morality, distinguish good and evil
Authority:  name and exact location of principal worshipper, recognize ritual, know myth
Expert:  judge belief, know god’s general purpose, recognize intervention
Sage:  know god’s immediate purpose

Gods are distinguished from demi-gods as follows:  gods are not knowable in the sense of possessing personalities, failings or compulsions; they do not have a ‘location,’ nor any corporeal form that can be conceived.  Gods are outside the ordinary construct of existence, even that of the outer planes.  Therefore, knowledge in this study relates to greater ‘truth,’ rather than the movement or conflicts occurring between lesser immortals.  Gods do not need to worry if their cults survive or if their worshippers are persecuted, and are therefore more concerned with a wider view of all existence.  Another way to think of it is that demi-gods occupy the planes of existence; gods create the planes of existence.

I have very few gods.  There is the Christian god, the Mohammedan god, Shiva ... and beyond that, perhaps one or two of the old gods of Cthulhu.

Defining morality means knowing absolutely whether or not something is right or wrong; the other players, or characters, and their opinions don’t matter.  The cleric KNOWS for a fact that something is wrong.  Distinguishing between good and evil can be accomplished when encountering a dilemna between moral paths (not physical ones).  The cleric, of course, is not constrained by their knowledge.

The principal worshipper of any god is of course a public figure, unlike the leader of a demi-god’s cult.  The location is up to the moment, as the cleric  has insight into where they would be at a given time of year, or according to rituals that manage the lives of such persons.  Recognizing rituals includes wider knowledge of why it is being performed, what time of year it occurs and what the ritual is meant to accomplish.  Know myth is to call upon a story about the god that may relate to something that is occurring now.

Judging belief is to determine or detect the amount of piety in a follower of their god.  Knowing the god’s general purpose would be for the long term, perhaps the next ten years, as changes occur in an area; knowing the immediate purpose might reveal a prophet that is just coming to light, the imminent occurrence of a war or pogrom, or similar changes to the religious landscape.  Recognizing an intervention would be any moment where the god’s direct influence has, say, changed a die roll, caused something to appear or otherwise changed the ongoing fabric of reality in some specific way.

Heraldry, Signs & Sigils

Amateur:  royal heraldry, regional heraldry, standard motifs
Authority:  artisan’s sigils, noble heraldry
Expert:  decipher coded sigil, heraldry of noted families, recognize glyph
Sage:  heraldry of secret societies, meaning behind glyphs

Indicates primarily what the cleric would recognize regarding the images that appear in dress, upon buildings, on items or elsewhere.   The knowledge does not enable to cleric to automatically find such things, but only to interpret them once they have been seen.

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