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What's the meaning of Reaching in Temple of the Reaching Moon / Storm?


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This may be quite obvious for native English speaker, but for me - being from Germany - I had my issues with the term Temple of the Reaching Moon right from the beginning.

So far I see the following meaning of Reaching:

  • achieving a goal
  • arriving at a location
  • gaining/winning an object
  • outreaching something (a person? a location?)
  • reaching out to grasp something
  • joining up
  • probing into something

The first two are my current favourites, but all the others (or even a combination) could be correct too.

So I would like to hear your opinion about, what the denotation of the term Reaching could be in this context.

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"Reaching out to grasp something" seems closest to me, but the title is intentionally ambiguous. The Temples of the Reaching Moon strengthen Lunar influence in places where it would otherwise be weaker. They're symbols of the Empire's expansion, and of its willingness to defend its frontier against intrusion. The Moon is reaching out to enfold you in her many-armed embrace. Submit, barbarian.

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I think grasping and probing are the most likely meanings. The Temple represents the reach of the Red Moon, places where the Goddess's light is eternally present, as it would be if you were on the Moon itself. Her hands diving into Glorantha and presenting the manifold wonders of Moonlight, bringing the Moon to the viewers at home. 

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The temples of the Reaching Moon impose a different magical reality inside their area of effect. They extend the weird overlap of Lunar surface effects with the mundane reality of Glorantha to the rather distant places where that interface of the Silver Shadow is nowhere near.

Thus, "Reaching" has a possessive element for me.

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I would say the definition of "reach" in the Temple of the Reaching Moon comes from one of (or both of) the following definitions from Wiktionary:

Quote
  • The power of stretching out or extending action, influence, or the like; power of attainment or management; extent of force or capacity.
  • Extent; stretch; expanse; hence, application; influence; result; scope.

So "reach" can mean both the act of extending one's power and influence, and the territory seized thereby. They euphemize it a bit by calling it "reaching," which doesn't have to mean something inherently violent, but it really is the same essential thing as if it were called the "Temple of the Conquering Moon."

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It might be worth noticing that the German word "Reich" or at least the related verb is a cognate of "to reach".

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5 hours ago, Oracle said:

This may be quite obvious for native English speaker, but for me - being from Germany - I had my issues with the term Temple of the Reaching Moon right from the beginning.

So far I see the following meaning of Reaching:

  • achieving a goal
  • arriving at a location
  • gaining/winning an object
  • outreaching something (a person? a location?)
  • reaching out to grasp something
  • joining up
  • probing into something

The first two are my current favourites, but all the others (or even a combination) could be correct too.

So I would like to hear your opinion about, what the denotation of the term Reaching could be in this context.

The use of "reaching" in "Reaching Moon" and "Reaching Storm" is part of English idiom.  Within English idiom we refer to situations where a criminal is "beyond the reach of the law", or explorers are "outside the reach of civilized comforts".  So too you might refer to the "reach of Empire", i.e. what is within an Empire's reach, or beyond it.  In this sense it is all about "grasp" as in the definition above, but there is a subtext of an "area of effect" involved too.  Speaking about reach actually anthropomorphizes the empire, as humans have "reach" (and spears extend that reach, for example), but Empires either have as many pairs of arms as they have citizens, or none at all, as an Empire is an abstract concept.  "Reach" as a word has its origin in Germanic languages, specifically West Germanic.  When the Lunars build a Temple of the Reaching Moon, they extend the glow-line and thus consolidate the power of the Red Moon in a region, thus the Lunar Empire reaches out and seizes new land with these temples, bringing them under their political control beyond what would be possible in a mere occupied territory. 

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I always thought that Temple of the Reaching Moon was a direct reference to the corresponding Lunar phase, a celebration of the rising power of the Lunar empire.

Edited by Corvantir
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On 23rd September 2016 Jajagappa posted this:

Actually, in winning over Saird, Holay, Tarsh, ... you have a population that is still heavily Orlanthi in the hills.  The Lunars were never a dominant portion of the populace here - even in the lowlands, much remained a mix of Earth worshippers, DH colonists (i.e. Lodril & Oria), other native folk (e.g. dog folk of Saird worshipping Jajagappa, the Vanchites with their own weird and eclectic mix).

Argrath does need to find a unifying power and has broken the Temples of the Reaching Moon (at least those of Tarsh and Saird).  The goddess of the Reaching Moon is Yara Aranis.  From GtG p.741, we know the following about her:

Yara Aranis: The Six-Limbed Goddess of the Reaching Moon first fought against Argrath as the guardian of the Lunar borders and later served him during the Hero Wars as the Six-Limbed goddess of Saird.

So one aspect is the winning over (courting???) of Yara Aranis to Argrath's side.  Clearly big quest there - maybe because Argrath is Illuminated, he's more readily able to do this.  And could be aided by Lunar converts to his cause, certainly.

The other aspect to consider is that the Temples of the Reaching Moon represent a 'chaining' together of magic from one temple to another to extend the Glowline.  Now, nothing in KoS or GtG suggests that Argrath creates an equivalent of the Glowline.  But, he readily adopts other magical styles, so it would be natural for him to look to 'chain' his temples together to draw magical power together for greater effects.  If you look at the map in GtG p.297, not only does it show the temples of the Reaching Moon, it shows the great Storm Mountains.  The natural 'Storm' thing to do would be to use these mountains as the centers for the Temples of the Reaching Storm and chain them together, and then as you pump more worship/magic into those temples, to extend the radius of their influence (or find additional, old Storm mountains to incorporate into the pattern).

I think reusing the Temples of the Reaching Moon themselves would be less likely - they are not centers of storm power, sitting in lowlands as they do.  But some would certainly become temples to Yara Aranis, perhaps broken free from her Lunar chains.

 

David Scott posted this:

We have a description of the usual temples in the Guide on page 297. I don't think the lump of Moon rock is needed, although undoubtably there's some in the temple. As the temple's circular central hall contains a "live" magical representation of the heavens with the Red Moon at its centre, it's this Full Moon that is the axis mundi for the effect. It is actually heaven on earth, as above so below. I've always imagined that the hall is much like the Pantheon, with the Full Moon always visible through the ceiling hole, a direct reflection of the true sky in the hall below. Like standing in the Crater. The inside of the hall is also on the Moon as well.

 

On 25th Charles posted:

 

 My memory is that Yarra Aranis was created by Moonson to suppress the nomads. Later she was somewhat repurposed to support the Glowline and later still the Glowline was used to repress and convert Storm worshippers.

So my guess is that Agrath quested, likely with his Lunar Illuminates, to get inside one of her more important temples and gave Yarra Aranis to chance/choice to fulfill her original purpose of killing nomads. Likely this involved a quest challenge against the most senior priestesses of the Yarra Aranis hierarchy. Somehow Argrath offered something that they truly desired or needed as part of the challenge. Or put them in a position where the consequences of not accepting the challenge were worse than losing the challenge. Or, possibly, tricked them into accepting what seemed to be a relatively innocuous challenge - though I think this option is a bit of a cop-out.

 

Soltakks posted this:

It might be that Yara Aranis hates Sheng Seleris more than Argrath, after all she was created to fight Sheng Seleris.

When Argrath and Sheng Seleris part ways, Sheng Seleris kills the Red Emperor and become Emperor himself and becomes even worse than the Red Emperor. At this point, Yara Aranis would probably be a bit annoyed at Sheng Seleris, who has just killed her father and ruling god, so it would make it easier to recruit her against Sheng Seleris.

However, turning the Glowline into the Reaching Storm is a major HeroQuest as it changes the very nature of Yara Aranis.

 

I think it is one of those glorious circumstances where it all depends on the players.😜

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1 hour ago, Ali the Helering said:

On 23rd September 2016 Jajagappa posted this:

...

David Scott posted this:

...

On 25th Charles posted:

...

Soltakks posted this:

wow, that's some pretty deep research. 👍

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16 hours ago, AndreJarosch said:

The german RQG rulebook translates "Temple of the Reaching Moon" as "Tempel des Reichenden Mondes". 

Which exactly made me think about this question again, because I have no idea, what this should mean ...

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In my Glorantha I try to reflect the puns from English to Catalan.

Reaching Moon = Lluna imminent

With "imminent", I meant "impending".
And when the Moon was at its full power, "imminent" would become immanent.

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