One of the most common
religions of the desert continent is called "Aeoliran". It is a belief that
there is a godly presence within the Void,
immortal, mighty beings descended from the Fae who are said to inhabit the
miraculous Void as well. Aeoliran is
a polytheistic religion, where the beliefers worship ten different Gods,
representing aspects like Light, Dark, Creation, Destruction, Life, Death,
Guidance, Health, Spirit and Love.
Prevalence. The people of Aeruillin are isolated from much of Caelereth, especially the southern tribes, who have little or no direct trading relations with the northern continents. This has led them to develop their own beliefs and religions in the course of time. Avá and Her Dream, the common elven belief in Sarvonia, or the myths of the twelve Aviaría, in which the humans of the north have based their religion are but legends to most of the Aeruillian people.
Aeoliran or the Myth of the Void Fae (as Sarvonian scholars refer to it) is heavily practised throughout most of the northern and western areas of the desert continent, although other beliefs do filter through, and some nomadic tribes in this area have their own religion (i.e. the Azhorhia). Some towns in the north are quite zealous in their belief, rulers and governments almost forcing the people to be of the Aeoliran religion, with grave punishments for those who are not (for example, the Ordions have been known to indenture someone into slavery for blasphemy against the Gods of the Void).
However, over the past fifty years or so some of the cities have softened their religious policies, especially the important trading port Shan’Thai, who was suffering economically because their stance meant they were avoided by most traders. Over-zealous citizens often attacked their boats, as they were not of the Aeoliran faith. In the more liberal East and South Aeoliran tend to mix freely with those who worship different Gods (the best example being the city of Qelkanacor, a place which is a safe haven for outcasts of any kind, has become somewhat of a total mix of so many different faiths, so it is widely renowned as the “City of Tolerance”).
Belief Outlines. The core of the Aeoliran belief is in the entities of the Void, which encircles Caelereth. Most people within Aeruillin know of, and many believe, in the Fae, creatures of legendary powers that supposedly inhabit the Void.
Aeoliran religion divides the Fae into groups, these groups being...
From this belief came the ten Gods that are commonly worshipped
throughout much of Aeruillin.
The Aeolirans see their Gods in a very personal light. They believe that the Gods will leave the Void when they wish, to walk in Aeruillin and visit the people and take delight in the world that they created. They see their Gods with faults, limits and imperfections, perhaps more mortal than those of other religions, however, they are recognized as higher beings and a realistic goal for people to attain to and strive to be like in everyday life – for no-one can be better than a God!
There is belief in the "Ardulá" (Tharian = rebirth/reincarnation) – the Goddess of Death, Sheára, will judge the "Xán" (Tharian = souls/essence) of a person upon their arrival in her heavens, if they are deemed worthy by her, then they are to become one of the Xarnaelé (High Faeries). This means that the faithful have achieved a state of purity so high it is hard to better. However, if Sheára judges it not to be, the Xán is returned to Earth to be placed into another life – Sheára chooses, depending on the purity. However, should the Xán be too tainted, then the Lady of the Heavens will have no choice other than to destroy the Xán completely, meaning no new life will be given to it. Purity is not judged on how holy the person was during his/her life, or how often someone prayed and fasted – but how the faithful looked to do good in everything, in a way that would please the Gods.
Origins. The foundation of the Aeoliran religion is somewhat hazy. Some believe that the first to tell of the Gods of the Aeoliran was a Veeké who came forth from the Void, who was called Jakata the Wise, to teach the people of their creators and tell of tales of the Fae. There are indeed writings by someone called Jakata all over Aeruillin and are believed to be true by many. Within the depths of the great library of the Hjoria are said to be the originals, and true proof of Jakata's existence. However, the Hjorian people are so worried that these works may disintegrate with the slightest disturbance, that they may not be touched, and seen only by a select few. So, these records cannot be truly verified, only believed through faith.
Others believe that the Aeoliran religion is and always has been part of life, from the creation of Caelereth. This is more widely accepted.
Gods Overview. The ten Aelorian Gods can be summarized as follows:
Nakashi, High Goddess of
Nakashi controls the power of Light, is a symbol of purity, and it is believed amongst her followers that she alone decrees when the sun shall rise in the morning. Nakashi works closely with her husband, Polmaen, the High God of the Dark, forever attempting to turn Dark to the Light. This is her main objective in her existence. There is nothing above or equal to Nakashi, even Polmaen, as it is believed that the Light shall always triumph over the Dark. [More...]
Polmaen, High God of
Polmaen controls the power of the Dark, and it is believed amongst the people of Aeruillin that he alone decrees when night shall descend, in accordance with the wishes of Nakashi, his wife, the High Goddess of the Light. Polmaen, despite having power over the Dark, is not evil. It is however, an eternal struggle for him to remain with the good, for the Dark wishes to bend his will to their ways. Polmaen is responsible for dealing with the evil forces of Caelereth, a great and unimaginable task. [More...]
Arkon, High God of Creation
Arkon controls the Element of Earth, being one of the four lesser high Gods. All the beasts and plants are deemed to be of his creation. It was Arkon who allowed the creation of a personal beast for each God, who they would forever have as a companion and a helper in their work. He is a role model for young men and lovers, due to him being the promoter of living life to the full. [More...]
Pariya, High Goddess of Destruction
Pariya is one of the four lesser High Gods. She has power over the Element of Fire. She symbolises destruction, but also a new beginning, as after the fire has died down, new life shall come forth. It is said that she can control the ferocity of the sun, and thus in many pictures is seen working closely with Sheára, concerning the Seasons. [More...]
Mermaria, High Goddess of Life
Mermaria has control over the great Element of Water. She is one of the lesser High Gods. Her followers hold deep respect, more so than many other Gods (bar perhaps Polmaen), for her. They see her as the ultimate Giver of Life, as it is she who will fill the clouds with rain, determining whether their crops will fail or be successful, or if their well shall be dry or full, and her precious Water is also the main constituent of all life upon Caelereth. Should Mermaria withdraw the gift of Water, then all life would die. Due to her ability over this element, the very essence of life, she is said to be able to change her form. Mermaria is seen as a solitary Goddess – she prefers to spend more time alone in her watery palace within the waters than with the other Gods in Asharvéa. [More...]
Sheára, High Goddess of
Sheára is one of the lesser four High Gods, along with Pariya, Arkon and Mermaria. She has power over the Element of Wind. She is revered as the Goddess of Death, as they believe that when they die, their Xán (Tharian = essence/soul) shall be taken by her Wind to the high heavens, where they shall remain and be judged by her for the Ardulá (Tharian = rebirth/reincarnation). Sheára is believed to control the skies, so her worshippers aim to keep her constantly appeased. The seasons are also under her control, and although influenced by the other Gods, notably Pariya, she alone has the final say. So, should Sheára be displeased by the attitude of the people, she may bestow upon them a harsh, overbearing summer, which would cause people to suffer, should she be pleased, she will allow them a pleasurable summer, in which people will delight. [More...]
Léarin, Goddess of Wisdom
Léarin is one of the Lesser Gods, and wields the Element of the Mind. She is said to know all, but tell nothing. Many look to her as a source of inspiration and guidance and she is often on the mind of those who are about to make a difficult decision. Some believe that in knowing and seeing all, her mind can control time itself, should she be needed to. Being that she is ageless, she is often depicted as a child. Léarin is often ignored by many of other Gods, who do not understand her, save Nakashi who she will converse with, and sometimes tell of what she has seen. She is a reminder of how powerful the mind, thought and wisdom are. [More...]
Har’wyn, God of Health
Har’wyn has dominion over one of the four lesser elements – his is the Body. He is responsible for the health of people, his priests train to do his work, taking in sick within their temples and healing to the best of their ability. He is a symbol of the joys of marriage, his wife is the Goddess of Spirit, Jenévere, although he was almost stolen from her by the wily charms of Kashmina, Goddess of Love. The God of Health is a popular God, often chosen to be the personal protector of a family. [More...]
Jenevére, Goddess of Spirit
Jenevére is a popular Goddess, worshipped widely with great enthusiasm by many. She represents one of the lesser elements, the Element of Soul, this is perhaps the most obscure, dealing with emotions and morals. She is often depicted with her husband, the God of Healing, Har’wyn. She is good and kind, an example to all. She is said to give a little of herself to every life, not in a material form, but as a silent muse buried deep within every person, helping us to decipher right from wrong. [More...]
Kashmina, Goddess of Love
Kashmina represents one of the four lesser elements. Her power resides over that of the Heart. Her main concern is with the desires, wishes, whims and wants of all people. It is also believed that should she observe two people who have a similar desire for each other she will seek to join them together in love. However, the ways in which she does this are not always predictable, neither are they the best for the people involved, she can be scheming and cruel. She is not as popular as many of her counterparts, although she has a strong following amongst young girls, many of whom join a special cult dedicated to her, to become a “Sister of Kashmina”. [More...]
Each family within Aeruillin of the Aeoliran faith chooses one of the Gods over
all the others to be their personal protector. Allegiance to the particular God
is shown by a shrine either inside, or more likely, at the front of their
house. It is often decorated with the symbolic colours of the God, and also a
pictoral representation is commonly placed within the centre. Sometimes the God
will change according to the families needs and wishes – a common example is
following the death of a loved one, the family mourning the deceased often
changes its individual shrine for worship to Sheára,
the Goddess of Death, for obvious reasons. However, it is not advisable to
fluctuate too freely, for fear of the Gods seeing themselves as a convenience
only to the person, and are not truly devoted, so would let their wrath be
The temples of every God are always open to those who wish to worship and give offerings. Priests are always on duty, to help perhaps with those whose faith is faltering, or those who need help and advice. There are often conditions to be met if wanting to enter a priesthood, for example, only women may enter into the service of Pariya, being that the Goddess of Destruction detests men.
There is a special day (sometimes days) devoted to each God, with specific activities that take place upon each one. They are:
The Festival of Sorrow
This festival is also sometimes called the "Day of Redemption". It is a quiet, solemn affair, not embracing any sort of gaiety and happiness that is present in the days that are held in honour of the other Aeruillin Gods.
The main festival for Arkon is called the Festival of Beginning. It is truly a joyous affair, celebrated on the day that the priests and priestesses of Arkon decree, which could be at the beginning of summer or in the middle of winter, although there is a trend for it to be on warm, hot days!
The Festival of Life (Mermaria)
This festival is celebrated on the first day of the rainy season, when the storms begin in earnest. It is also customary on the first day of each month to stand facing an ocean for a short while, and spend time remembering the Goddess of Life, in her solitude within the oceans of the Void.
The Days of
Unlike the other Gods, who tend to have a special day devoted to them, Sheára has days devoted to her concerning the welcoming of each season, and also various rituals that are performed for the dead or dying.
The Festival of Reflection (Léarin)
The Festival of Reflection is devoted to Léarin, and takes place upon the third day of the third month, and starts on the third bell.
The Festival of Cleansing (Har'wyn)
This festival is a time when the people reflect upon their body, and spend much time in worship.
The Festival of Celebration (Jenevére)
The Festival of Celebration is held in honour of Jenevére. It is, arguably, the most loved festival of all, being that it generally constitutes an excuse for a large party.
The Festival of Love (Kashmina)
The Festival of Love is the day for Kashmina. It is a time when courting couples everywhere declare their love, and also people set firm in their minds their desires and wishes, and set about in order to fulfill them.
Information provided by Artemis