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Puckohue

Building a shrine

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Just now, Puckohue said:

What does it take to build a shrine to, let's say, Orlanth? In RQG terms preferably.

You'll need to start by Sanctifying the grounds. Preferably on the site of some ancient, and relevant, myth.

You'll need an idol, image, or the like of the deity to reside in during holy services. (RQG p.283)

Foes will be attracted to the site, so you'll want to Ward the grounds. 

To keep it going, you'll need to Summon a Cult Spirit to become the wyter of the shrine. That will also help with the shrine's defense.

You'll need to have a priest or god-talker lead regular Worship services there, at least once per season, where 75–225 lay members and initiates gather to participate in the services. (RQG p.284)

Given the need for 75+ worshippers, this is obviously a community effort, but the results are: you can replenish Rune points, you can gain one special Rune magic spell, you connect with your deity, and you can the blessings/protections from the temple wyter.

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One thing you'll observe with just that short list, is that you, as the First Priest of the shrine, need is a fair investment already in Rune points. 

1 point (Sanctify), 1-4 points (Warding), 1-3 points (Summon Cult Spirit), and probably 1 point for Divination (as a key task in your first worship service). Minimally that's 4, but a 1 point Warding is not going to stop a determine Lunar magician and you may even want two Wardings (outer perimeter and the altar), and a weak wyter may not be enough to aid you against foes. More likely you'll want/need 8-12 Rune points to get a shrine up and going.

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Personally, I think if it's not a significant outlay it's insulting to the deity

Making a shrine should be big event. In the old games there was this nasty thing where players were making shrines in inns simply to get back spells. This, depending on your campaign, might not be in the spirit of the game. 

Now, there might be a simple travelling shrine in a utilitarian manner if you think that's right. In defence of this, most religions (including pre-reformation Christianity) is 'transactional'. This means you won't worship a god if you don't get anything practical in your view out of it.

So I guess what I'm driving at is whether the shrine should be respected or not depends on what you feel is right
 

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18 minutes ago, ChalkLine said:

Personally, I think if it's not a significant outlay it's insulting to the deity

And if not the deity, the neighbours who wield much more power than any deity in the territory,

 

18 minutes ago, ChalkLine said:

So I guess what I'm driving at is whether the shrine should be respected or not depends on what you feel is right

Hmm, I see the possibility of reputation for temples. I like it. Could be used for any building. taverns and inns come to mind..

Edited by Bill the barbarian

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I think it should take an event of significance.

For example, if a local hero helped villages to fight off a band of chaos monsters attacking the village, and the hero led the villagers in prayer to give heartfelt thanks to their god for giving them the strength to save themselves and their families, all that emotion and feeling, they might suddenly find they had relearned all of their rune magic. If they then build a memorial to that event and hold a service ever cult holy day to remember their sacrifice and achievement, the shrine would be maintained.

Edited by EricW
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Start by regularly worshipping there, using Sanctify or as a Spirit Cult. Ideally it is a site with some known link to the deity, or the appropriate buildings or other permanent elements are constructed. 

The difference between a Site and Shrine is really having a large enough congregation regularly worshipping, and being actively maintained. Once you have a congregation and the site is maintained, it should function as a Shrine and allows replenishing rune points and POW gain rolls etc. 

I don't think every Shrine has a wyter, some are part of other communities rather than separate communities themselves etc. But if you need to, once the congregation is large enough, perform a ceremony that creates (or attracts, or installs, or affirms) a new wyter, and you have a relatively permanent shrine, that is likely to survive losing a maintaining God-Talker. 

 

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In my Red Cow campaign (HQ), the PCs discovered a spot in the Staglands where healing magic was a bit easier. The CA player declared that it must be a Chalanan holy site, and set about trying to figure out what Chalanan myth happened there. One he found a myth he that he thought had happened there, he decided to build a shrine there. It's turned into a major plot thread in the campaign. He had to get the support of the clan ring for the project, and one of Queen Ivartha's household indicated that the queen might support the project with resources. But other clans will not be happy about the Red Cows just trying to annex part of the Staglands, and the Telmori will obviously oppose it, which is a problem since they don't respect the White Lady. So there's a lot of diplomacy happening. Most people have told him he needs to do a quest to prove that the myth took place there, and if the quest succeeds, they will think providing the resources for an actual shrine. The big challenge is figuring out whether the Red Cow Tula will get extended into the Staglands or if the shrine is just going to be out there on its own. The former is more controversial, but the latter is more risky. 

Obviously HQ makes the issue of creating a shrine much more about the story and less about the mechanics and technical requirements, but this might at least give you things to think about as you're doing campaign planning. 

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In my game, set in Pavis (1612-1614, so far), I had presented the Morning Star and Evening Star as a paired spirit cult. Morning Star was presented as the patroness of beginnings (and coffee), Evening Star of bringing things to an ending. The players, particularly our party’s aspiring shaman, and another who is an aspiring priest of Pavis, decided to run with this. They got permission from the Pavis Temple to set up a small shrine/dining area, atop the wall, near the Pavis Temple. The Pavic character let it be known to his (many) contacts and friends in the city that he would be there certain mornings at sunrise, having coffee. People quickly understood that that was a way to get direct, informal, access to the Pavis temple/government. Likewise, our aspiring Shaman let it be known to her community, that here was a forum where issues could be (informally) raised and discussed before they were officially brought to the city council. It was excellent political playing by both players. They created a similar evening event, to balance the cult. Now after roughly a year of game time, they have a recurring “congregation” that honors the Morning and Evening stars - without it being a ‘cult’ yet. On their “to do” adventure list, they are now planning to recover some sacred relics of the stars, to bring to the morning coffee shop and evening salon, effectively creating an already attended temple. The Pavic Priest is also working to strengthen relations with the Sun Dome (he considers Orlanthi uncivilized and unreliable), and plans to use the Morning and Evening Star cult as a bridge cult, creating a minor cult in common for groups that are otherwise separate - the Sun Dome, Pavis, the River People, Orlanthi of Pavis County. After all, who could object to meeting over a cup of coffee to try to talk out issues? Minor cult magics will be a bonus, and an incentive for people to regularly participate. The biggest challenge will actually come from the character’s priests; who may get nervous if the cult of morning and evening gets too tied to Pavis, or the PC getting too much influence. But that’s the subject of another type of adventure.

(And yes, I know your version of Glorantha may not have coffee. Too bad for your characters.)

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1 hour ago, pachristian said:

In my game, set in Pavis (1612-1614, so far), I had presented the Morning Star and Evening Star as a paired spirit cult. Morning Star was presented as the patroness of beginnings (and coffee), Evening Star of bringing things to an ending. The players, particularly our party’s aspiring shaman, and another who is an aspiring priest of Pavis, decided to run with this. They got permission from the Pavis Temple to set up a small shrine/dining area, atop the wall, near the Pavis Temple. The Pavic character let it be known to his (many) contacts and friends in the city that he would be there certain mornings at sunrise, having coffee. People quickly understood that that was a way to get direct, informal, access to the Pavis temple/government. Likewise, our aspiring Shaman let it be known to her community, that here was a forum where issues could be (informally) raised and discussed before they were officially brought to the city council. It was excellent political playing by both players. They created a similar evening event, to balance the cult. Now after roughly a year of game time, they have a recurring “congregation” that honors the Morning and Evening stars - without it being a ‘cult’ yet. On their “to do” adventure list, they are now planning to recover some sacred relics of the stars, to bring to the morning coffee shop and evening salon, effectively creating an already attended temple. The Pavic Priest is also working to strengthen relations with the Sun Dome (he considers Orlanthi uncivilized and unreliable), and plans to use the Morning and Evening Star cult as a bridge cult, creating a minor cult in common for groups that are otherwise separate - the Sun Dome, Pavis, the River People, Orlanthi of Pavis County. After all, who could object to meeting over a cup of coffee to try to talk out issues? Minor cult magics will be a bonus, and an incentive for people to regularly participate. The biggest challenge will actually come from the character’s priests; who may get nervous if the cult of morning and evening gets too tied to Pavis, or the PC getting too much influence. But that’s the subject of another type of adventure.

(And yes, I know your version of Glorantha may not have coffee. Too bad for your characters.)

Seems like "proto God-Learnerdom" to me!!

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30 minutes ago, Lord High Munchkin said:

Seems like "proto God-Learnerdom" to me!!

I could see that. But it also has plenty of precedents: Argrath forming the white bull society. The Lunar Empire seeking to marry Pavis into the pantheon. In Mary Stewart’s Merlin trilogy, Ambrosius uses the cult of Mythras as a unifying agent for his soldiers. 

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Trickster drinks all the morning star coffee - a minor quest which leads to the creation of an Eurmal shrine which teaches “hasty exit”.

Edited by EricW
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I suppose that apart from the issue of the magic, there should also be some discussion of the physical form of the shrine.  Clearly some form of physical representation apart from the idol needs to be present.  For example, without walls and a gate, a valuable idol may be stolen despite a warding being in place.  Some cults may also want to place a roof over their shrine, and in all likelihood, the priest or shaman who tends the shrine will want to live nearby.  After all, a shrine may eventually become the focus of a temple (or at least the entry hall).  In imperial cultures, most shrines are built to an approved design when in major population centers. 

There is also the issue of sacred time sacrifices.  IDK if other people follow the KoDP method, but shrines can provide a whole tribe with blessings in return for a yearly sacrifice.  I have always thought that was a good idea, and one worth following.

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