ETHERUS, SANTHARIAN GOD OF EXCESS

MYTHOLOGY - INTERPRETATIONS - SYMBOLS/COLOURS

God of Excess, Desire, Lust and Love, often also refered to as the God with the many faces or - following the interpretation of the Order of the Lones - the vicious Spirit of Seduction or simple: the Treacherous. Etherus is one of the Twelve Gods or High Spirits (Aolía) who sprang from the Dream of Avá the Beautiful according to the elven myth as related in the Cárpa'dosía. Together with Armeros (God of War) and Foiros (God of the Sun) Etherus is one of the three Gods dedicated to the element of Fire. The fifth month of the Santharian Calendar, the Month of the Singing Bird (elvish: Alé'veván) is dedicated to Etherus solely.

Etherus, God of Excess

View picture in full size Picture description: Etherus, the God of Excess, in the form of a lascivious juvenile man. Image drawn by Enayla.

Mythology. From the beginning of time Etherus was the most unpredictable of the Gods. When the High Goddess, Avá the Beautiful, ordered the spirits to shape Her Dream in the mirror of her mind, which for the mortals is known as reality, Etherus corrupted the designs of the other Gods. As Urtengor created the landscape and the gardens of bliss, Etherus made seas flooding the lands and volcanos destroying vast territories. Together with Queprur He laughed as destruction was their greatest joy and Arvins approved with their actions. It is even said that Etherus and Urtengor fought each other, which resulted in the gigantic Death Marshes and Barren Lands which now can be found at the continent of Nybelmar west of Santharian lands. According to the Cárpa'dosía Avá Herself had to interfere into the divine struggle and to calm them. It is also told that Avá loved Etherus most from all Her Spirits as He was naive and spontaneous in all He did, even if it destroyed the works of the other Gods.

Etherus was also the one who convinced the first Children of the Gods Jeyriall and Armeros, the Titans, to join his intentions, which was also the reason why He was called the Treacherous later on. Etherus told each of the Titans that he should seek to increase his power over the other Titans so that Avá would look with blessing upon him. And so a fierce battle of the Titans began adding more chaos to the world than Etherus himself was capable for. As Avá saw this She was grieved, but She knew also in Her heart that the Titans were made out of love to the Mother of All and the creations She was responsible for and did not destroy them. Neither did She punish Etherus and so it happened that all Children of Avá who were inspired by the Breath of Avá also have the will and wanting of Etherus in their souls: the impetus to exceed the essence of their existence, be it through the means of the body or the spirit.
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The Interpretations of Etherus. Etherus was always known as a very special God, who in many ways acts unlike the other eleven Gods guiding the destiny of the world. Interpretations of the essence of Etherus among the tribes and people who believe in the twelve Deities of Aér'aí'chán differ greatly. But not only the scholars dispute upon Etherus, but also the commoners, which is obvious when viewing the different kind of temples dedicated to Etherus.

An Etherian Banquet

View picture in full size Picture description. A richly filled banquet as part of an Etherian orgy. Image drawn by Seeker.

Many such temples are built as comforting and multi-colorful rooms dedicated to love-making and excessive feasting. Both are seen as acts of worship and glorification of the God. Very common among the "priests" of Etherus is the ritual of enjoying the effects of the Ethelian Weed, a herb who in the interpretations of the Etherians frees the body from its earthly bondage and brings it closer to the pure Dream of Avá. It happened more than once that people died in such orgies in order to sacrifice themselves for their Gods.

Other interpretations strongly reject reducing Etherus on sexuality only and view the excessive impetus in the Children of Avá as the transgression of self of which sexuality is only part of. "Temples of the Transgredients" devoted to Etherus can be found in Santhala and in Bardavos (the anicent Thaehavos), the city of artists. The Order of the Transgredients mainly concentrates on forming the creativity in one's self, on preparing the mind for higher tasks which can only be achieved when leaving older virtues behind.
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Symbols/Colours. The symbolic animal of Etherus is the bird, mainly the so-called Aecilian. This proud eagle species feasts on the Ethelian weed. It also reaches great heights which no other birds are able to stand and flies majestically. However, it is a fact that the enormous Aecilian Birds often die when crashing seemingly unmotivated into mountain rocks, thus ending their proud lives in a single moment. It is still not confirmed if such deaths are the result of the effects of nourishment of the Ethelian weed, but it is very likely.

The colors of Etherus are mainly pink, red or orange (everything which slightly reminds of nude flesh), but as already mentioned most temples are multi-colored.

At the temple of Etherus in Carmalad at the east coast the remarkable poem of the ancient writer Dar'Seideous is inscribed:

"Perhaps He will prove the world's destruction
This lone God of Fire.
He the voice of seduction
And Lord of all desire
Wears His many faces fair.
Each more beautiful then the last
But who can trust the God of Lust
Or pay the price He asks?"
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