The gods Ethnicity in Divine Tyranny | World Anvil

The gods

Welcome to Divine Tyranny! In a world where all-powerful gods live among mortals and play with their life for their own entertainment, Archivist Cécile is doing her best to go unnoticed. Unfortunately, the warring water and forging gods are now interested in the archives... Come read about Cécile and the world in which she lives!
Introduction to the story | Cécile | The Archivists | Novel upcoming

Table of Contents

Gods are all-powerful entities that constantly quarrel with each other and involve poor mortals in their deadly conflicts.   Your only hope is to pray enough that they are satisfied but not enough that you catch their attention as a devotee: nothing good can come out of that, take my word for it and not that of those idiot priests! Yes, they're all wearing pretty robes and jewellery, but I ask you, do they talk about how short their lifespan is?
 

The gods

 
Gods have enormous magical reserves, as it is what makes them gods in the first place. And despite what the gods want us to think, the skills that go with that power only develop over centuries of experience and at different speeds depending on the personality and assiduity of each god.   The highly advanced form of mind magic they practise allows the gods to gather magic from the prayers of their mortal—or even immortal—followers, with us all sacrifice a small amount of our own energy each time we pray.   Gods have a natural corporal body in their own plane of existence, but they can turn bodiless or take whatever appearance they wish, provided that they have enough magical energy for it. While in the mortal realm, they often stay bodiless, as seeing their real appearance could damage our feeble mortal minds.   They can also choose to possess mortals to better interact with us—but then, they have to be careful not to use too much power or that will destroy their borrowed flesh in horrifying ways. Even in the best of cases, direct touch from a god will very often leaves a visible marks on mortals: the brand
 
His blinding gloriousness, the all-powerful sun god Q, inhabits the heavenly body of the sun when he visits the mortal realm. All can then feel his glorious eyes watching over us. Our lord Q sees everything. Our lord Q knows everything. Our lord Q stands in judgement of our sins!   Our most glorious lord Q is ancient, one of the very first gods to walk the earth, which is why he has such a powerful platform as the primary sun god overseeing all the other weaker and lesser sun gods. The godly name of our lord is not for our ears to hear. Instead, the letter Q has been chosen to represent him among us, as it is a circle representing the body of the sun with an arm to represent a ray descending towards the earth. His simple name also reflects this ancient status of one who has no need to differentiate themselves from other gods.   Our lord is above the petty squabbles of the other gods and is often called to arbitrate over their quarrels. Our lord is, however, not above scorching his mortals when they fail in their daily devotions, so you better join our most glorious Church, pay your tithes, and make your devotions!
 

The god realm

 
The gods live in another plane of existence parallel to the world in which we mortals live. In that plane, the gods have a common gathering place, an immense palace complex where they have parties or where they debate complex topics together.   Otherwise, the gods each have their own small territories they can control and transform at will, and this is their main home. The appearance of each territory is deeply personal and can reveal a lot about their owner, but us mortals are not always privy to that information. In addition, the gods all go through phases, often redecorating every few centuries.
The bedroom of his blinding gloriousness, our lord the sun god Q by AmélieIS
 
Our most holy prophets have reported visions of his blinding gloriousness, our lord Q. His palace is built entirely out of gold to better reflect his magnificent rays. Our lord likes to lie in a bed made of still alive and growing laburnum trees—the trees of the golden rain!—with the eternally-fresh, golden, poisonous flowers of the trees serving as decorations. And most thoughtful of our lord, the softest and shiniest silk bedsheets and bed curtains imaginable veil his blinding glory to preserve his mortal visitors' minds.
 

Hierarchy

 
There is a strict hierarchy between gods, and it is important for them to follow rules of etiquette and show proper deference and respect to their superiors if they do not want to be smitten into the ground. The hierarchy is based on: pure power level, skills, past accomplishments during divine conflicts, and winning specific games going on in the mortal realms, such as establishing an important Church or gaining the allegiance of an influential kingdom.   Beyond receiving deference, being at the top of the hierarchy means for a god that they get included in all big decision making, that other gods do not mess with their mortal toys, and that they get weaker gods to serve them either directly in their divine palace or as emissaries in the mortal realm.   This hierarchy also carries on in the mortal realms, with weaker gods having to follow the direction of the main patrons gods of each country. In our country, the most powerful gods are even gathered in an unofficial local gods' council that rules us all behind the scene.
Hierarchy by AmélieIS with images from Pixabay and Vecteezy
 
His blinding gloriousness, our lord Q, has hundreds of lesser gods bowing to his most divine person and carrying out his will in the god realm as in the mortal realm! Choose our lord as your main patron and you cannot go wrong! What use is sacrificing your time and magic to someone weak who could never fulfil your wildest dreams even if they wanted to do so?
 

Local gods' council ruling the country:
  • the water god,
  • the forging god,
  • the architecture god,
  • the war god,
  • the trade god,
  • the sun god Q god.

  • Minor gods living in the country:
  • the god of plants,
  • the god of pestilence,
  • the healing God,
  • the food gods,
  • the shadow god,
  • the hunting god.
  • Sustenance and death

     
    Gods are immortal. They do not age and can heal from almost anything given enough time. What they're trying to keep hidden—but that we at the royal archives have discovered—is that it's possible to injure them with enough magic. If the injury is bad enough, they could even take centuries to fully heal! However, while fighting and injuring each other is seen by gods as all fun and games, that type of grievous injury is not given to another lightly.   Powerful gods rarely need to go through such troubles to force others to submit, and so those injuries are only reserved for the most severe of enemies. It then shows both a deep enmity and deep respect or fear for that enemy's power.   In those cases, the agreed-on procedure is to decapitate the enemy and to consume their heart fresh and raw on the battlefield, so as to absorb part of their power, and to burn the rest of their body. Those gods are then considered "dead" until their "resurrection" into a fully corporal entity.   Because of their immortality, gods do not truly need sustenance. However, eating can bring them more magical energy and empower them. It is also highly enjoyable for them to do so. For these reasons, powerful gods regularly have big banquets together where the weakest of the gods are used as waiters.   Gods also get magical energy from the prayers mortals direct towards them. Despite what they want us to think, there is no requirement for their to receive that, and they will not suffer from its absence. However, us archivists have been speculating that prayers feel different to them than food. It seems that receiving magic from others in such a way is much more like a drug the gods have become addicted to— and woe are those who deny it to them!
    A divine heart by ksyfffka07 on Pixabay
     
    Surely you must have heard the multiple legends concerning our most glorious and blinding lord Q! Over the long history of the world, our lord has fought many battles and consumed many enemies with his might! Do you really want to put all of your efforts into someone else when they might get devoured by the sun at any time?
     

    Relationships with mortals

     
    Mortals worship gods, "as is proper". Depending on the mortals, this worship is either done in glory of their patron gods or out of a desire to appease them because of fear that they'll destroy mortals' life otherwise—a very valid concern. For the gods, the main goal of any interactions between them and mortals is for them to gain more power from the mortals. This is accomplish either by the mortals spreading the influence of the Gods' Churches so as to ensure them more devotees, or more directly by the mortals doing more prayers or more powerful sacrifice.   A god just boldly asking for more prayers out of mortals is not enough, unfortunately for them and fortunately for us. This will indeed be seen as too demanding by us, mortals, and many are likely to reduce their devotions out of spite and look for the protection of a new patron god. This is a great offence, of course, but if done slowly and sneakily enough, the gods are unlikely to take note of the loss of one measly mortal. By the time they realise something is up, it's already too late and their Church is significantly weakened.   A common divine reaction in such a case is a desire to smite the entire country to the ground. However, despite being all-powerful, there are some limitations on what the gods can and cannot do in the mortal realm—at least in theory: the gods' rules   Indeed, while they can easily elevate or destroy mortals' lives on a small level, grand gestures such as destroying a whole kingdom are more controversial and is likely to have other gods intervene, either because their own toys are endangered by the action, or simply out of spite. Destroying a kingdom should be done properly, through manipulating its inhabitants or enemy kingdoms, not by simply scorching the whole place.   Despite what some of the gods might pretend, all of them love their games with us. It's their most engaging pastime, and it's simply unimaginable for any of them not to keep up to date with what is going on in the mortal kingdoms and which god is winning what game as a result of a mortal king taking a sudden decision. The only reason not all gods have their own Church is lack of power to compete with the other gods, not lack of desire.

    Come join our most glorious church! The veneration of his blinding gloriousness, our lord Q, must spread all over the world! Come donate your gold for a good cause, and you will see your own small lump get added to a magnificent temple elevated to the exultation of our of lord!
    Church dedicated to his blinding gloriousness, our lord the sun god Q by AmélieIS
    Advertisement for the glory blindness of the sun god, our lord Q by AmélieIS
     

    Opinion from the archives

     
    The gods are all around us and it is completely impossible to avoid them or their influence, no matter how much you try. Sincere worship is foolish, as you're only likely to waste your magic and time without any chance to get noticed by your chosen god. But even if you're "lucky" enough to do so, this will only last for a while as the god take advantage of you, before they discard you without warning and letting you to suffer the consequences.   On the other hand, directly opposing the gods like that Pierre Ysabeau is doing is even more foolish as it will only makes his end come more quickly and a lot more painfully.   Sensible people all do like me: pray to the major gods of your country as is expected, and send them just the right amount of magic to be noticed neither for its strength or its weakness. And then go on to live your life with the freedom to disdainfully look down on your foolish fellows and to devote your time to more worthy practices.
         
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    Cover image: The bedroom of his blinding gloriousness, our lord the sun god Q by AmélieIS

    Comments

    Author's Notes

    Surprising no one, the cannibalism has been added in honour of Qurilion XD   Written for the anti-god league!


    Please Login in order to comment!
    Dec 22, 2021 18:57

    All hail me! :D


    Creator of Araea, Megacorpolis, and many others.
    Dec 23, 2021 11:40 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

    All hail the glorious sun!

    To see what I am up to: my Summer Camp 2024.
    Dec 23, 2021 02:11

    Gotta love a good gods fight :P Looking forward to more gods articles ;)

    Check out my On the Shoulders of Giants article: Satlonia
    Dec 23, 2021 11:40 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

    Thanks :D I'll have to make up some more gods next!

    To see what I am up to: my Summer Camp 2024.
    Aug 5, 2022 01:24 by Lilliana Casper

    Oh lovely, cannibalism. Nice touch there, with the sun god quotes, I thought it was hilarious. I like the way this article was written, as always, and I am now certain: all polytheistic gods are awful. Great work here, it was awesome!

    Lilliana Casper   I don't comment much, but I love reading your articles! Please check out my worlds, Jerde and Tread of Darkness.
    Aug 7, 2022 07:33 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

    Thanks a lot :D Qurillion is an awesome sun god and I had to show people worshipping him properly :p

    To see what I am up to: my Summer Camp 2024.
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