Forsilvra :: Winds of Change
Old 05-24-2013, 02:23 PM
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Default [01.0] Quintism

The Religion of the Five
Quintism is practiced in the South, in the province of Ahestere, the islands of Caelain and Lacharn, and the capital island, Forsilvra.


Creation
It is said that when the world was new, and the land still raw, that there were gods even then. They sculpted and formed the land, they created the sea and the sky, and, in time, they created creatures to inhabit their land. They watched them grow and change over centuries, and, in time, humans appeared.

Humans were a completely new sort of creature, and the gods were not sure how to handle them. They did not seem content to be born, grow old, and die, as the other animals did. But they also feared everything about their world, as though they looked on it with different eyes than all the rest. The gods, taking pity on the poor, terrified creatures, assigned their own children to watch over them.

And so it was that the humans came under the watchful eyes of the Five. The gods gave them fire to keep them warm through the cold nights. They led them to fresh water, and guided them to sources of food. Through time, the humans grew more self-sufficient, but they still remained thankful and faithful to the Five that showed them the way.

Time immemorial has passed since those humble beginnings, but the faithful have never lost sight of the Five; indeed, their faith has been strengthened with each passing generation. They still worship the Five, and the children of those gods, who themselves enrich the lives of those who recognize them.

Religion in Forsilvra
Those cities that remain faithful to The Five generally have one main temple. There five main branches, radiating out from the center like the spokes of a wheel, and at the end of each of these halls is an altar to one of the Five. Interspersed along the walls of the main hub of the temple are alcoves which contain altars to the Sons and Daughters.

Smaller towns will generally have a more modest building with altars to each of the Five, with perhaps another smaller room containing the altars to the Sons and Daughters.

The altars are always housed under the same roof; equality is maintained for all even though cities may prefer one god or goddess over another.

Other buildings which may be contained on the grounds of the temple are housing for the priests and priestesses (separated by gender), storehouses for supplies, and in the largest of cities sometimes there is an orphanage.

The faithful go by many names: Quintists, Children of the Five, and Followers of the Five are the most prevalent.

Joining The Church
The usual age for someone to join their local temple is twelve. It is considered honorable to have a member of the family serve The Five, and social status has very little to do with one’s ability to join. The admission of the child must be voluntary, and parental permission is almost always necessary; this is obviously not possible in the case of an orphan, but it is a rule put in place to restrict the possibility of a child running away from home to join the temple.

There is no process set in stone for joining; it varies by temple, and is one of the duties of the Chosen to decide the criteria for who they will accept. Usually there is some sort of interview with the parents, to deem whether they are sending their child for the right reasons. Sometimes the child is interviewed next, and often there is a sort of apprenticeship, where the child is allowed to stay at the temple for a week or more as a trial period. This allows the child a chance to back out if they are unfit, and also gives the Chosen and the Acolytes an opportunity to determine the chance for success, and take appropriate action.

Before becoming an Initiate, the child must spend an entire day in prayer for each of The Five. They are stationed at each altar, and must remain in silent and intent prayer from the rising of the sun to the rising of the moon. During the whole of that day, the child is to fast, although he or she is brought water every few hours. On the sixth day, the child must pray at each of the Sons and Daughters’ altars, two hours each. On the seventh day, if all is well, the child becomes an Initiate, and is allowed a day of rest and reflection.

Positions Within The Church
Keeper of the Five - Also known simply as the Keeper, this is the highest position in the church. Always held by a man, the Keeper serves to act as an envoy between the Five and the people of Forsilvra, passing blessings down and educating the masses about the Five and the Sons and Daughters. It is he who is the final voice in who becomes a member of the Chosen. He is also in charge of every temple, although he rarely leaves the temple on the Island of Forsilvra, where he serves as the King’s religious advisor. The Keeper of the Five is chosen from a pool of five male Chosen, and is decided by a vote of all of the Chosen.

Handmaiden of the Five - Also shortened to Handmaiden, the Handmaiden is the highest ranking priestess. She serves directly under the Keeper, and they perform many of the same duties; however, she is not allowed on the King’s council, and she more closely serves the temples while the Keeper is busy. It is she who mainly travels to the different temples, assuring that they are being conducted properly. She also serves to help the Keeper in any capacity necessary.

The Chosen - The highest ranking priests and priestesses. There are four in each temple, two men and two women. They are hand picked by the Keeper and the Handmaiden, and are in charge of running their respective temple. It is their job to accept Initiates, and to deal with them if they prove unsatisfactory. In the larger cities, they are also the ones to keep charge of the orphanage. It is also their privilege to preside over weddings, blessings, and other ceremonies.

The Acolytes - The middle ranking of priests and priestesses. They are the go between for the Chosen and the Initiates; they take instruction from their superiors, and delegate to their inferiors. They are allowed to preside over the lesser ceremonies, and are in charge of caring specifically for the altars. More trained than the Initiates, they work more closely with the altars themselves, and are usually the ones that temple goers seek out for guidance and help. They are the ones who train Initiates.

The Initiates - The lowest and most populated rank of priests and priestesses. They are the ones who really keep the temples running; they are in charge of keeping the temples clean, of distributing alms, and of taking care of the stores and the orphans.

The Guards - Sometimes an Acolyte, instead of being elected to be a Chosen, will be selected to become a Guard. These priests or priestesses have proven themselves to be pious and faithful, and then receive additional training in various methods of combat. Once trained, they are restrained by a number of rules: they may not use violence unless acted upon first; they must never seek to kill, but instead restrain or incapacitate their enemy as peacefully as possible; they must be ready to give their lives for those they serve. They are stationed at every temple, although the number of guards depends on the size of the town or city. There are specially trained Guards for the Keeper and the Handmaiden, as well as for the Chosen.

Conduct of Church Officials
General Behavior - Priests and Priestesses of any rank in the Quintist Church are expected to conduct themselves with honor, dignity, and respect. In all things they must keep in mind the teachings of the Five. They are must refrain from violence, hate, and greed. They forfeit any claim to land, title, inheritance, or dowry that they have have been entitled to. It is expected that they treat all those with whom they come in contact with the kindness and mercy. While sexual encounters are not necessarily encouraged, they are not forbidden, with the stipulation that any and all partners be consenting.

If any are discovered to be conducting themselves in an unsatisfactory manner, a complaint lodged to a Chosen will be dealt with in a serious, discreet manner. Punishments are always in line with the teachings of Quintism, and are decided by the joint ruling of the Chosen of the given temple. Punishments include an increase in chores, temporary restriction of meal rations, or mandatory solitary meditation and prayer, but may be as serious as demotion. In very serious situations, the Handmaiden and/or the Keeper are involved, and only they can remove someone from service altogether. In the unthinkable scenario of murder, the guilty party is turned over to the pertinent authorities.

Exiting Service - It is true that the very vast majority of those who choose to enter service within the Quintist Church remain true to their commitment for the rest of their lives. However, there are rare situations in which a Priest or Priestess may find themselves called in a different direction, and the Church is respectful of that, knowing well that the Five are always at work in sometimes unpredictable ways. A Priest or Priestess, upon deciding to leave, are asked to make the decision with as little haste as possible, and conversation and meditation with a Chosen is common practice and quite expected. If, after such discussions and prayer, the person still wishes to leave, they are sent off from their temple with the fullest blessings of the Church. They leave behind them not only their way of life, but also their title. When applicable, either due to age or nobility, a member of the person's family is invited to come to the temple to escort them home; in other cases, a member of the temple will personally escort the person back to their family homes.

Marriage - All members of the Church are allowed to marry, from the lowest Initiate to the Keeper of the Five. It is entirely optional; there is no change in status or honor, neither gain nor loss, for choosing to do so. While Priests and Priestesses are some of the lucky few who are allowed to marry for their own reasons, they make the sacrifice of any inheritance that may come with their spouse. Any lands, titles, political or monetary gains, inheritances, and dowries, that may be gained by the match, are forfeited by both parties.

It must be remembered, at all times and without exception, that the Priest or Priestess's responsibilities to the Church are to come first. If ever there arises a situation where it is clear that this is no longer the case, the offending official will be stripped of their title and removed from the Church permanently. Their families, if applicable, will be informed of their disgraceful departure from service, and then the Church will absolve themselves of any further responsibility.

Family - As Priests and Priestesses are allowed to marry, so it follows that they are also allowed to have families. Housing is provided by, and is in close proximity to, the temples, so that the working member of the Church may continue in their responsibilities. If applicable, employment may be sought by the spouse, to ease the financial burden on the temple. Children born into these families are not expected to become members of the Church by default; they are provided a diverse education at the temple, and when they come of age it is expected that they find employment or apprentice in a trade, and their education prepares them for such an outcome. If a child, upon growing, decides to join the Church in an official manner, they are put through the same initiation process as any other applicant.

This varies slightly when the children are born to the Handmaiden of the Five, or the Keeper of the Five. Their elevated status means the children are almost always raised with the education a noble child would receive, so as to be better prepared for life at court. Frequently it is the case that, especially with slightly older children, they are sent to ward with the family of the Keeper of Handmaiden, although this is not by any means required.

Last edited by Kiera; 08-23-2013 at 08:45 PM.
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Old 05-24-2013, 02:28 PM
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Default Deities

The Five
Sons and Daughters of the Old Gods, they have watched over humans since time began.

Mihra - Goddess of the Sun. It is she who walks across the sky to bring light and warmth to the world, always chasing her brother, Enkil. She is the one who gave the humans fire, but like any woman she is prone to capriciousness, and forest fires and lightning are attributed to her anger. Her favored human form is as a pleasant young woman with long, golden hair, eyes the colour of a summer sky, skin clear and sunkissed. She is most often associated with the colour yellow, is often represented with any breed of cat, and is said to favor lilies.

Enkil - God of the Moon. He forever chases his sister, Mihra, across the sky, trailing his cloak of stars behind him. He is calm and quiet, and he reigns over the waters of the world. His favored human form is as a tall, thin man, dark of hair and pale of skin, with eyes the deep blue of the ocean depths. His colour is blue, he’s associated with fishes of all types, and is represented by night blooming flowers, like jasmine.

Veles - God of the Earth. From his stronghold deep beneath the surface, he is the one who orchestrates the seasons. He is an inconstant god, however; his happiness brings fertile ground, but his rage takes shape in earthquakes and volcanoes. Veles usually takes the form of a strong, stocky man, ruddy coloured and with a voice like the booming of thunder. He’s represented by green, by the bull, and also by poppies.

Fujin - God of the Wind. He is a mischievous god, and the one responsible for the rains; he steals water from Enkil and carries it high in the sky to where he cannot reach, and then he releases it to fall on Veles. He is to be thanked for the rains that bring crops, but he is also responsible for misusing the others, creating tsunamis, wild fires, hurricanes, and blizzards. His preferred human form is a handsome young man, strong and virile, tall and beautiful. His face is pleasing to the eye, but his eyes and smile are often cruel. He is associated with the colour red, is said to prefer reptiles of any sort, and frequently is associated with orchids.

Amelie - Goddess of Death. She is perhaps the most feared of all the Five. She controls no element, but instead is a bringer of both mercy and plague. When she’s feeling kind, she releases the very old and the very sick from their pain. When she is feeling cruel, she unleashes sickness and injury, sometimes working closely with Fujin. No one is safe from her grasp, and she is the most inconstant of all, changing her mind at a moment’s notice. She usually takes the form of a young, thin woman, her hair long and brown. Her face, while beautiful, is marred by an expression that is perpetually conceited and all around haughty. Her colour is thought to be black, her animal of choice is said to be any kind of bird, and roses are the flower associated with her.

Children of The Five
The sons and daughters of The Five, of pure divine blood. Their powers are more specific and somewhat lesser than their parents, but to neglect them is to call down serious consequences.

Akna - Goddess of pregnancy and childbirth. She is said to watch over pregnant mothers, and she does her best to protect them from Amelie.

Enyo - Goddess of war. It is her voice that the soldiers hear as a call to war, her cries that drive them on, and her blessing that is said to determine the winner.

Sylvanus - God of lust. He is the the embodiment of temptation, prayed to both by depraved sex addicts as well as nervous newlyweds.

Armea - Goddess of the arts. She is the one who inspires painters, singers, and writers, but she is fickle, and is known to abandon her patrons on a whim.

Tabai - God of the hunt. He is a mischievous god, sometimes blessing the hunt and other times favoring the prey.

Shai - Protector of the Lost. She is invoked to protect those who have become lost, be it a child who has wandered off or a husband who has lost his way in life. It is said that she will only shelter those with a good heart.

Sokar - Stealer of the Lost. The foil to Shai; he preys upon the lost, leading them further astray. He is most easily drawn to people who have an impure heart, one stained with greed, malice, or evil.

Last edited by Kiera; 08-18-2013 at 12:41 AM.
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Old 07-14-2013, 03:52 PM
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Default Timeline of Events

The Quintism Timeline
  • Year 1: With the Crowning of the first king, Jondé Fontenot, Quintism is named the religion of the royal family.
  • Year 2: Jondé Fontenot names the four Chosen to be the first to occupy the temple in Forsilvra. He charges them with the duty to find the first Keeper of the Five. Two months later the first Keeper is named. Keeper Simon Marquis is announced and his ceremony is performed. He choses Judith Allaker for his Handmaiden.
  • Year 3: Construction of the Temple of Quintism begins
  • Year 6: Construction of the temple is complete. The Road of Five between the castle and the temple is paved.
  • Year 24: Keeper Marquis approaches the King about building temples in cities who request locations of worship.
    • The request to build new temples is approved by the King.
  • Year 25: The Caelish request temples. Construction begins in both Eglos and Valldeveles.
  • Year 32: Construction in Eglos and Valldeveles finished and four Chosen were appointed for each temple.
  • Year 42: Keeper Simon Marquis perishes at 64 years old. Before he dies he names a list of eligible successors.
    • Keeper Tristan Charles is appointed and his ceremony is performed. Handmaiden Annabelle Morrison is chosen.
  • Year 60: Keeper Tristan Charles dies suddenly after complaining of chest pains at the age of 55.
    • The chosen pick from the remaining candidates from Keeper Marquis’s list.
    • Keeper Lawrence Frankston is nominated and his ceremony is performed. He keeps Handmaiden Morrison in her position.
  • Year 75: Keeper Frankston dies at age 60 after naming candidates to replace him.
    • The youngest Keeper has been named. Keeper Morris Evans.
  • Year 76: Keeper Evans chooses Norah Maine as his Handmaiden.
  • Year 127: Keeper Morris Evans dies at 72 years old.
    • A new keeper is chosen from the list of eligible priests. Keeper Elston Keefer is announced. After a few months the Keeper chooses Emily Thane as Handmaiden.
  • Year 175: Keeper Elston Keefer passes away after falling down the stairs at age 70.
    • Keeper Norris Curatress is named as successor at the age of 25 and chooses Tarrah Daulton as his Handmaiden.
  • Year 201: Saul Ignatius is Appointed as one of the four Chosen of Abain
  • Year 203: The church sends out a team who ventures to Eglos on an archaeological expedition and they discover old scrolls/texts which speak of the gods/goddesses
  • Year 205: The Keeper and Committee of Doctrine decide to destroy the scrolls. They charge Saul Ignatius with the destruction of the scrolls.
  • Year 223: The Keeper of the Five is found dead at the age of 73. Foul play is suspected but cannot be proven and after an investigation his death is assumed to be due to old age.
    • Keeper Douglas Howsier is named the successor at the age of 34. Julianna Doubois is chosen as Handmaiden.
  • Year 224: A number of Chosen and other priests disappear, some turn up dead. This goes on for several years and investigation turns up no leads.
  • Year 230: As a result of the events over the past years Keepers and Handmaidens have their own specific guard detail. Temples are given a fleet of protectors and the Chosen are guarded by a select few.
  • Year 231: Plague breaks out in the north.
  • Year 239: Keeper Howsier dies of plague.
    • Osiris Linnet is named next The Keeper. Nymeria Forthwind chosen as Handmaiden.
  • Year 240: Keeper Linnet convinces Lyonesse Foulkes to join the church.
  • Year 241: The Royal Celebration of the end of the Plague.
    • Game start.
    • October 10: Saul Ignatius leaves Caerthynas and travels to consult with Keeper Osiris in Belleile.
    • October 27: Nymeria Forthwind passes away due to an undisclosed illness.
    • October 28: Saul Ignatius is granted an audience with the Keeper. He comes to Keeper Linnet with the missing scrolls of the gods found during the archaeological expedition in Eglos on the Isle of Ayron as a sign of good faith.
    • October 28: Saul Ignatius makes an attempt on Keeper Linnet’s life and is detained. During questioning he admits to ridding the Quintism ranks of men and women he considered to be nonbelievers.
    • October 28: Keeper Linnet orders Saint Lyonesse to take the newly obtained scrolls and store them along with the documents that have yet to be verified.
    • November 3: Saul of House Hughes is stripped of his title and is beheaded for the murder of 17 priests and priestesses along with the admitted murder of Keeper Norris Sheldon, the suspected murder of Keeper Elston Keefer, as well as the attempted murder of Osiris Linnet. His body is not burned and his head stays on display as a warning.
    • November 6: Keeper Linnet performs the ceremony and names Saint Lyonesse Foulkes as Handmaiden.

Last edited by Kiera; 02-17-2014 at 04:07 PM.
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