Cycle of the Ages Myth in Nys | World Anvil

Cycle of the Ages

The cycle of the ages is a belief according to which two entities contend for the future of Nys, alternating dark and civilised periods. In the most credited version, they would be the Abyss and the Moon Goddess, but common variations concern the latter not being the main opposition to the former.  

Summary

According to the legend, two entities exist, a good one and an evil one, in eternal conflict for supremacy over the universe. While the evil one is widely believed to be the Abyss, there is no consensus on the good one. Many identify it in the Moon Goddess, but many others refuse it. Whichever the case, the two entities cannot face each other in a direct confrontation for supremacy, because of their nature. They are unable to move from their respective places, so they have to rely on choosing champions and gaining people's support to prevail on the opponent.   When an entity's influence overwhelms the other's one in a region or a whole kanva, it transforms the area according to its characteristics. In particular, the Abyss corrupts the world, perhaps with the goal of devouring it, while the Moon Goddess protects it.   When an entity succeeds in influencing the whole world of Nys, or when its supremacy is contested, a new era begins. Last time it happened when Damparo killed the archdemon Etrem ruling over Nys in the Second Era.   To break the cycle, it would be necessary for either the good entity or the evil one to prevail on the other at the point of ending its existence. The event would have massive effects on the whole cosmos and a final era, commonly referred to as the Fourth Era or the New Aeon, would begin, enlightened by all things good or thoroughly corrupted.  

Historical Basis

According to the Nogry Węsz legend, the Dark Lands have been in a prosperous state at the beginning of the current era, but have regressed into chaos. Moreover, legends recount a mythical forgotten first era, when a single empire ruled in peace over Nys. These two tales lead scholars to believe the world is locked in a neverending cycle, where good and evil battle for hegemony.   Ancient ruins and artefacts from a clearly civilised people are witnesses of a fallen glory past the Second Era. In the same way, the Dark Lands constitute an alarm bell of what might happen to Nys if people let their guard down, pointing out the Abyss is not yet defeated.  

Variations & Mutation

Someone argue the Abyss is a much more abstract entity than the Moon Goddess, whose role instead resembles Etrem's. They believe there exists another unknown good being opposing the Abyss. They think it could be possible for a demonic champion as powerful as Damparo to kill the Goddess, whereas defeating this unnamed God would not. Needless to say, the Moon Church considers this version a heresy.   The main argument in favour of this version is that there seems to be no evidence of the Goddess in any ancient ruins, including those (few) discovered in Doujate, the region where her influence is more present.   People who refuse to recognize the Goddess as the supreme good, often believe in Uphi instead, a forgotten god from before the First Era, said to have created the universe. Others look at other mythical beings, but there is still no proof of their existence. The Moon Goddess appears to be the only known benevolent entity in the whole universe (or at least the most powerful one).   Other variations concern the possibility of breaking the cycle. Many believe it is impossible to defeat the Abyss, even for the mightiest champion any good entity could choose. The Church strongly opposes the position, and rumour has it they are preparing what they call the Very Last Crusade.   A popular belief is that common people actions are as significant as the champions ones. If they do not side with the good, there is no chance of fighting the Abyss back. Analogously, the Abyss cannot conquer Nys if people believe in the Moon (or the good in general). This fact could be the reason for the unsuccessful abyssal crisis during the nineteenth century. Though no new champion comparable to Damparo emerged, people fought with fierce determination, causing the demonic invasion to fail.  
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Cover image: Nys Logo by Fabrizio Fioretti

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