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Lodril in Sun County


pachristian

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24 minutes ago, pachristian said:

Pardon me if this has been asked before: Do peasants in Sun County, Prax, worship Lodril? Or is the entire population dedicated to Yelmalio/appropriate cohort goddess?

Every man in Sun County is a member of the cult of Yelmalio, and in fact Sun County is a theocracy where membership and standing in the Sun Dome Temple is required to do things like own land (which all at least nominally belongs to the temple). Some of them will also join an associated cult that serves a useful and necessary purpose, most notably that of Lokarnos.

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5 minutes ago, Runeblogger said:

In my Praxian/Pavic campaign set in 1619, all of Duke Raus' peasants in Ronegarth worship Lodril. Which is pretty handy for the Verkarthani PC in the party.

Yes, but Ronegarth is not Sun County, right?

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1 hour ago, pachristian said:

Pardon me if this has been asked before: Do peasants in Sun County, Prax, worship Lodril? Or is the entire population dedicated to Yelmalio/appropriate cohort goddess?

Do we mean RQ initiation to Lodril?

Because I think that Lodril is certainly worshiped (in a variety of roles) but I think that initiates to Lodril are fairly uncommon and probably focused more on identifying more with the heat of earthly fires than with the solar light.

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The Thelxinoë of the Graclodont set.

Eight Arms and the Mask

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Where do the Sun County folks originate? Are they originally Kethaelans/Kerofinelans, for the most part? If so, the agricultural importance of Lodril/Veskarthan is probably not that great. However, if there's a large Pelorian-derived contingent, you'd assume the Lodril-Oria duo would be important for any commoner farming village/plantation.

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16 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Where do the Sun County folks originate? Are they originally Kethaelans/Kerofinelans, for the most part? If so, the agricultural importance of Lodril/Veskarthan is probably not that great. However, if there's a large Pelorian-derived contingent, you'd assume the Lodril-Oria duo would be important for any commoner farming village/plantation.

They're mostly Kethaelan/Kerofinelan I'd wager if we're talking the Praxian temple, since they came from the EWF (assuming I didn't fail my history check). Maybe a few Pelorians, but they're probably so mixed in it doesn't matter. Yelmalio and Ernalda seem to be their dominant gods, and the structure of Sun County society doesn't really lend itself to Lodrili villages anyways.

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There's about as many Pelorians as there are Kralori or Teshnans (i.e. a handful, at most). You can meet one of them in The Corn Dolls, importing cutting-edge agricultural techniques (latifundia!) to Sun County.

Lodril is not a significant cult, though I imagine Yelmalio's naughty uncle Lodril features in Sun County folk myths as an exemplar of What Not To Do, always getting into the sort of lecherous drunken self-indulgent beastly troubles that foolish peasants are tempted to lapse into, but which fine upstanding Yelmalion soldier-farmers like us would never dream of tainting our pure souls with. Ahem.

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More broadly: a theme I'd use in Yelmalion folk mythology is that the ideal heroic champion is the Good Soldier Son, like Yelmalio. While his father is wise, benevolent and patriarchal, he doesn't necessarily need to know what's going on in the barracks, on the march or on the battlefield (Yelm, & the Count / my revered Dad); some Uncles are foolish, lascivious and beastly (Lodril, & all those hazia-smoking skirt-chasing lazy drunken backsliders who don't embody YO virtues); other Uncles are aloof, austere and too otherworldly for their own good (Dayzatar, & High Temple Light Priests and non-combatant Acolyte types in general).

Ernalda is the wifely/motherly goddess of domestic prosperity and happiness back home on the farm, but just as the Count gets to shag a river nymph, so we all might feel certain natural temptations, and after all, what happens on campaign stays on campaign: just because we have the Truth Rune doesn't make us blabbermouths, and a good phalangite covers for his comrades.

These are the thoughts that are rattling around my noggin this morning.

Edited by Nick Brooke
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And we’ve all ignored half your question, because we’re like that.

The main women’s deity in Sun County is Ernalda, the faithful wife of Yelmalio. Sun Dome men frankly don’t know much about women’s religion, and indeed there are cult geases specifically intended to stop them dressing up in women’s clothing and spying on secrets that weren’t meant for men’s eyes (and yes, I’m thinking Clodius and the Bona Dea incident here, so shoot me).

So it’d be reasonable to assume a small number of Asrelia, Ty Kora Tek, Maran Gor, Babeester Gor and Voria shrine cult things going on, along with Grain Goddesses and Eiritha-type cattle cults and local Nymphs of the river, fields and hills, plus of course some whacked-out hippy Aldryami survivals from the Summer of Love (“where did *that* come from!?”), but none of them are as powerful or empowering as the equivalent Goddess Cults back in Sartar.

(Centuries of patriarchal oppression in a desert fringe with weak Earth powers and a dependency on the River & irrigation & hydraulic despotism rather than the generous sharing of the Earth’s bountiful harvests will do that to you)

I am sure the women of Sun County have some amazing stories they could share, but our perspective up until now has always been that of the ignorant, excluded male oppressors, plus the occasional woman who essentially sides with the patriarchy (by enlisting in YO) rather than sticking with her sisterhood. Which is completely understandable, if somewhat regrettable.

TL/DR: the power of women’s cults in Sun County is secret, hidden, non-obvious; its  backbone is the Ernalda cult, rather than Dendara or Entekos or any such Pelorian nonsense; but it split off from whatever the Dragon Pass mainstream looked like eight centuries ago, and you’re fooling yourself if you think you know what they’re doing in those secret, hidden, occult, women-only underground fertility- and snake-oriented temple services that you’d be struck blind if you snuck into - and rightly so!

Afterthought: some of the Bronze Lords (recent immigrants from Dragon Pass, in your grandparents’ time) might have brought familiar Ernaldan womens’ ways with them. There will still be all the furtive, covered-up, veiled local stuff going on, and the Bronze Ladies are probably left out of that. Or sworn to secrecy when they find out the local religion isn’t exactly the same as the bare-boobied snake cult from back home. Culture clash is fun, initiations always convey unspeakable secret knowledge to be kept from the uninitiated, and oppressed Ernaldans in a Yelmalian patriarchal theocracy won’t turn out looking much like Yanioth.

YGWV, and all that.

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15 hours ago, pachristian said:

Do peasants in Sun County, Prax, worship Lodril?

Generally not, as Yelmalio is the main cult.

Some might, though. There is nothing to stop them worshipping Lodril.

15 hours ago, pachristian said:

Or is the entire population dedicated to Yelmalio/appropriate cohort goddess?

Generally, men worship Yelmalio and women worship Ernalda.

There are exceptions, of course. Some women worship Yelmalio or Yelorna. Some men worship Lokarnos. Some men and women worship Chalana Arroy and, very occasionally, the other Ligthbringers.

I think it is more the case that someone not worshipping Yelmalio or Ernalda should have a reason for that.

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Simon Phipp - Caldmore Chameleon - Wallowing in my elitism since 1982. Many Systems, One Family. Just a fanboy. 

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41 minutes ago, Nick Brooke said:

Afterthought: some of the Bronze Lords (recent immigrants from Dragon Pass, in your grandparents’ time) might have brought familiar Ernaldan womens’ ways with them. There will still be all the furtive, covered-up, veiled local stuff going on, and the Bronze Ladies are probably left out of that. Or sworn to secrecy when they find out the local religion isn’t exactly the same as the bare-boobied snake cult from back home. Culture clash is fun, initiations always convey unspeakable secret knowledge to be kept from the uninitiated, and oppressed Ernaldans in a Yelmalian patriarchal theocracy won’t turn out looking much like Yanioth.

YGWV, and all that.

Oppressed Ernaldans in a Yelmalion patriarchal theocracy IN PRAX. The Yelmalions in Dragon Pass have the bare-boobied snake cult and probably are as shocked as other Sartarites by the low status of Ernalda in Praxian Sun County.

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4 minutes ago, Jeff said:

Oppressed Ernaldans in a Yelmalion patriarchal theocracy IN PRAX. The Yelmalions in Dragon Pass have the bare-boobied snake cult and probably are as shocked as other Sartarites by the low status of Ernalda in Praxian Sun County.

Oh, absolutely. Among other profound differences. (Praxian Yelmalians would find all the grey-skinned helots and the hot/cold dynamic with other local temples and regional dynasts utterly bewildering)

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How did we get onto Ernalda and the status of women?

The answer to my question is that Yelmalio is universally worshipped among the men of Sun County, and Lodril and other solar gods are only worshipped for specialized situations. Lodril's specialized magic, to warm the earth, is not particularly useful in Prax or the Zola Fel valley, so there would not be a practical reason to import the cult. Ergo, there are probably a few shrines to Lodril, but either no dedicated worshippers, or so few that it does not matter.

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23 minutes ago, pachristian said:

How did we get onto Ernalda and the status of women?

Maybe because of your question.

23 hours ago, pachristian said:

Or is the entire population dedicated to Yelmalio/appropriate cohort goddess?

Yelmalio's appropriate cohort goddess is Ernalda, but Sun Country Ernaldans are very different to Sartarite or Esrolian Ernaldans.

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Simon Phipp - Caldmore Chameleon - Wallowing in my elitism since 1982. Many Systems, One Family. Just a fanboy. 

www.soltakss.com/index.html

Jonstown Compendium author. Find my contributions here

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1 hour ago, pachristian said:

How did we get onto Ernalda and the status of women?

Because you asked about the “appropriate cohort goddess,” and didn’t seem to know much about religion in Sun County. I’m sorry if you didn’t care for what I shared.

(smh)

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5 hours ago, pachristian said:

How did we get onto Ernalda and the status of women?

The answer to my question is that Yelmalio is universally worshipped among the men of Sun County, and Lodril and other solar gods are only worshipped for specialized situations. Lodril's specialized magic, to warm the earth, is not particularly useful in Prax or the Zola Fel valley, so there would not be a practical reason to import the cult. Ergo, there are probably a few shrines to Lodril, but either no dedicated worshippers, or so few that it does not matter.

This raises some questions: does "Lodril" have an independent existence in Orlanthi lands as a separate deity from Veskarthan, or are they two terms merely treated as synonyms for the same deity? Chaosium's texts seem to imply the latter, but it sometimes gets a bit weird (like why would Caladralanders need to "heat their soil", it's a subtropic humid coastal mountain terrain).

EDIT: I realize that Caladralanders are probably outliers, but I wonder whether there is more similarity between them and mainstream Orlanthi, or whether mainstream Orlanthi are more similar to Solar Pelorians in their view of Lodril (keeping in mind that there are lots of Pelorian Orlanthi)

Edited by Sir_Godspeed
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45 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

EDIT: I realize that Caladralanders are probably outliers, but I wonder whether there is more similarity between them and mainstream Orlanthi, or whether mainstream Orlanthi are more similar to Solar Pelorians in their view of Lodril (keeping in mind that there are lots of Pelorian Orlanthi)

That's my understanding, based on The Guide.  Calandrans are basically Orlanthi in terms of culture & general religion who view their patron deity as Veskarthen

As a guess, the weirdness is very much experienced by worshippers.  I can't imagine devotees of Turos, Lodril, and Keskarthan would all get along, even if they acknowledge they all worship the same god with a relatively consistent personality.  But the mythology and stories they all tell are so different.  It's not that they're necessarily incompatible, but it's like finding out your god has a double life.

 

(I'm not terribly surprised Lodril is a bit of a two-timer, but hey...)

 

Edited by Nevermet
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7 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

This raises some questions: does "Lodril" have an independent existence in Orlanthi lands as a separate deity from Veskarthan, or are they two terms merely treated as synonyms for the same deity?

I know Prax is not a typical Orlanthi land, but I seem to remember that the 'typical' Lodril worshipers in Prax are the Agimori.

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On 3/22/2021 at 8:25 AM, Grievous said:

They like it hot. 

I don't think heating the soil is the only purpose. There is one (or many) active volcano in Caladraland. This would be an ideal place for worship and to protect the land against enemies of the fire or earth pantheons. It also allows them to weaponize the environnement against invasion, or perhaps a flood in the later hero wars 🙂 . I'm not entirely certain about this but in think there are Mostali using the heat from the Vent as a tremendous power source. 

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On 3/21/2021 at 7:10 PM, Sir_Godspeed said:

This raises some questions: does "Lodril" have an independent existence in Orlanthi lands as a separate deity from Veskarthan, or are they two terms merely treated as synonyms for the same deity? Chaosium's texts seem to imply the latter, but it sometimes gets a bit weird (like why would Caladralanders need to "heat their soil", it's a subtropic humid coastal mountain terrain).
 

Volcanic rock crumbles into high quality soil.  That's why their Earth god is a Volcano god.

 

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There are most definitely local differences between Lodril and Veskarthan (beyond just the name), but overall I think most Caladralanders would hear about Lodril and just say, "So that's Pelorian Veskarthan," and ditto a Pelorian would hear about Veskarthan and say, "So that's Caladran Lodril." To most people in-universe, the two would be recognized as different names and faces (and perhaps even some different attributes and powers) for the same god. They're both spear-wielding (phallic), volcanic gods who make the earth fertile, so most would agree with the identification.

On 3/21/2021 at 5:55 PM, Nevermet said:

As a guess, the weirdness is very much experienced by worshippers.  I can't imagine devotees of Turos, Lodril, and Keskarthan would all get along, even if they acknowledge they all worship the same god with a relatively consistent personality.  But the mythology and stories they all tell are so different.  It's not that they're necessarily incompatible, but it's like finding out your god has a double life.

 

(I'm not terribly surprised Lodril is a bit of a two-timer, but hey...)

I mean, if the Greeks could accept that the Arcadians worshiped Zeus as a god of lycanthropy as legit, I'm sure each of them would just look and the other and go, "Weird, but you do you, I guess."

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3 minutes ago, Leingod said:

I mean, if the Greeks could accept that the Arcadians worshiped Zeus as a god of lycanthropy as legit, I'm sure each of them would just look and the other and go, "Weird, but you do you, I guess."

Yep.

Confusion, and whether there is solidarity or hostility will depend on context

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It's just interesting how Chaosium so consistently chooses to gloss the volcanic god as Lodril, even in a Sartarite or Esrolian context (where, culturally, the likelier name would be Veskarthan or something, surely?), while they, for example, never gloss Dendara as Ernalda, or Oria as Esrola, even though, runically, it seems like Chaosium's interpretation (and I might be reading incorrectly between the lines here) is that they are equivalents (much to the confusion of some, iirc.)

I'm not saying it's *wrong*, it's just interesting trying to guess at the editorial strategy and to which degree it does and doesn't overlap with in-universe practices.

Sorry, this is quite off-topic now.

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