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  1. Charles

    Greg Stafford Condolence Thread

    Reading through this and elsewhere, I’m struck by two things: how many of us had deeply personal experiences with Greg; and how he remembered each of us and quite a bit about us and who we knew.
  2. Charles

    Greg Stafford Condolence Thread

    My condolences to his family, though what words will make a difference? Greg gave me several of the most important moments of my life. When he asked me to work with him on one of my little corners of Glorantha, when he published the result as a joint article; when I asked him to tell a story from memory and then he thanked me because it worked better than the story he had just read aloud; when I received a authoring credit with him (let’s be honest, mine was a tiny tertiary credit). The hours (days? weeks?) reading his creation of Glorantha. The vast amount of time online reading others’ interpretation of his vision and arguing the details. And the friends that I made around the world due to him bringing us together. Greg, your going leaves a big hole in my world. Safe Travels.
  3. Charles

    Vamargic Eye-necklace and cave trolls

    Generally the sourcebook and the guide override earlier sources. Of course, it’s not impossible there’s a mistake...
  4. Charles

    Esrolia, Grandmothers and Imarja

    I don’t believe that the Grandmothers’ behaviour in Esrolia really has anything to do with Imarja. Ernalda is known for being manipulative. In fact, like Orlanth’s violence, it is not only admired but celebrated among the Orlanthi (Esrolia is still part of Orlanthi culture, even though they reject Orlanth as a ruler). I’ll have to look up the events and dates in E:LoTTG (later) for the exemplar of this. It was only when a Grandmother took her manipulations to such extremes that she started destroying the land, that the Priestesses and Ernalda took action to stop her. Not because of her treatment of her relatives but because she burned the crops and fields and thus rejected an even more core value of Ernalda.
  5. Charles

    Esrolia, Grandmothers and Imarja

    Continuing from where this diverged in another topic
  6. Charles

    About slavery

    I think the discussion has moved so far, it should go into a new topic 😀
  7. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    Cannot? I’m not sure that I can agree. My idea is that the role of a priest is to lead religious ceremonies and rituals of (hopefully) large numbers of worshippers, where the number of worshippers is the key determinant of success. Other factors affect the success but are less important than that number. So a sociable but magically subpar priest that attracts the whole community will be more effective than a strong magician that can only get a few to attend. OK, I get that I’m making an extreme example. And communities will usually balance their concerns and choose someone that is effective in both of these dimensions (and likely many more dimensions) to be their priest. In Orlanthi religion, only a very few worship only their initiated deity and never any other. ‘Everyone’ sacrifices to and worships Ernalda and Orlanth regularly, even if initiated to, say, Lankhor Mhy, and during the Sacred Time ceremonies and rituals, there is worship and sacrifice to all the major deities and everyone takes part to ensure the world continues. Of course, there are the unresheathed Humakti, “but anyway they’re already dead”, and maybe one or two disciples (using a Hero Wars term) or other weirdos who do not take part, “but they are our weirdos”. So most clan level priests will find themselves leading important events where there is no initiate of the relevant deity present. And this is completely normal and usual.
  8. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    Agreed. I'm home now and can check maps Greenstone is a temple on Malani lands. Having said that, there is the possibility that the Malaini are the clients of the temple rather than the other way around So basically no truly independent temple with a large priesthood in Sartar...
  9. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    Do you mean the Clearwine and the Colymar? I immediately eliminated that, but didn’t remember or have the time to look up Greenstone. On the other hand, I’m moderately sure that Old Wind is independent
  10. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    This looks like RuneQuest to me, hence my comment. Apologies if we have crossed wires. In many cases, I feel that the linkage is the other way around than RuneQuest or HeroQuest model: it is the appointment to a community supported position that allows a person to develop their magic. BTW, I’m not a huge fan of the idea of ‘independent’ temple complexes scattered all over Sartar with large priesthoods (that is independent of a clan or a tribe). There are a very few, and most (all?) of those are well known from the literature, largely listed in S:KoH (starting from page 113). Basically, there’s Lankhor Mhy and Chalana Arroy in Jonstown, Ernalda/Greenstone, Orlanth/Old Wind and (possibly) Ernalda and Orlanth in Boldhome. All the other holy places in Sartar are attached to clans or tribes and few of them are temples with a permanent priesthood.
  11. Charles

    About slavery

    Most people only have magic for livelihoods, so it’s less difficult to enslave them. Confiscation and destruction of items, separation from children (hostages), destruction of shrines and temples, ritual cutting of tattoos and patterned scars, prevention of worship, laming, blinding, amputations and execution of troublemakers, the aged and the disabled. Drugging may be used for a while to stop worship and magical renewal (but not for too long as it is relatively high cost). Slave bracelets will only be used on extremely valuable prisoners and hostages.
  12. Charles

    Orlanth the Abuser

    Some myths should be creepy. And the Orlanthi are often (usually?) an extremely violent people, so it should be no surprise that some of their myths show that. What we have not seen much of are the myths of manipulative Ernalda. The Making of the Storm Tribe hints at it. Further hints are given in the history of Esrolia, where the manipulations of the Grandmothers become so extreme that they hurt the land and it’s capacity to grow. Only at this point does the goddess withdraw her blessings.
  13. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    The answers depend on whether you follow the social and magical models implied from the literature or the models presented in RuneQuest. In my opinion, the models in RuneQuest are there for gaming purposes first and matching the literary model second. And RuneQuest is better for that. To me (a literary Gloranthaphile rather than a gamer), an Orlanthi priest is an appointed position. A godi is a vocational position. Often a godi will be appointed priest. And often not, as it’s the social connections that matter. A priest is fully supported by their congregation and therefore the ‘mad’ godi that tells them uncomfortable things will not be supported over the popular schmoozer who can just manage the ceremonies without stumbling. Of course, when it matters, the social winds will blow another way. And if you look in our world at the established Christian churches, a substantial minority of priests are in their positions not for the religious worship of God but to take advantage of their social position. And their elevation to bishop is not necessarily related to their theological ability or religious fervour but to other factors.
  14. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    yes to all of these options. Going further a woman can initiate to Dar, without specifying Vinga at all opinions, of course
  15. Charles

    Distinction between Sartarite Carls and Cottars?

    my understanding / feeling / opinion is that in a poor clan, there is only one priest and one priestess. The clan chieftain is the priest of Orlanth. His wife, more often than not, is the priestess of Ernalda, particularly if the clan can't afford to support 2 separate families/households as nobles. In richer clans, they may well be able to afford 2, 3 or even more priests and priestesses and then other arrangements become practical. The chieftain has to initiate to a a god that grants rulership and that will be usually be Dar (Orlanth), including many women chieftains; occasionally Orendana (Ernalda); with a fraction of a fraction worshiping Elmal. I suspect that other husbands of Ernalda (Heler, Argan Argar) may be able to find religious means to rulership, but this would be a story arc rather than a rule/well known path. Most of the gods of the Orlanthi are not jealous, so initiating to another friendly deity of the pantheon is a non issue. During the Lunar occupation of Sartar, many clans appointed chieftains (and even kings of tribes) that did not primarily worship Orlanth. But all of them would have to initiate to a deity that grants rulership. And if pressed, they could truthfully say "I worship Dar not Orlanth" without risking divine retribution as religiously, Dar is Orlanth.