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Abbot of the Unceasing Tide

The Order of the Unceaing Tide, being the institution responsible for training the Andokh Renar, is poised to exert influence from one end of the world to the other. As its leader, the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide has the ultimate authority over that influence. Known in the Dokhar language as the "Ngom Aladokha Ru," it did not actually begin as a position of esteem. Originally, they were only responsible for the Abbey of the Unceasing Tide. When the Order's leadership was killed in the destruction of Lo Dokh, the Abbot of the time stepped up to fill the role, and the change eventually became permanent.
— from To Rule The Waves: The Dokhar Diaspora, by Andoloros Bag Dolmoron

Qualifications

Before becoming Abbot of the Unceasing Tide, the sole formal qualification is to be fully trained as one of the Andokh Renar, in all aspects of their arcane arts. However, by convention and tradition, only persons capable of reaching the deepest rooms of the Abbey of the Unceasing Tide, its Dark Rooms, and who have been judged to have achieved a degree of mastery in their arts, are considered for the position.

Requirements

Formally, a person only needs to have achieved the position of an Andokh Renar to then become the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide. In practice, only those who have achieved higher ranks within the Order are only ever considered for the position. Specifically, one of the lesser Abbots—the "Ngom Ru"—from an abbey in a major settlement are chosen for the position.

Appointment

The standard process of ascension to the position is to have been chosen by the previous Abbot of the Unceasing Tide to succeed them, to be revealed upon death. In the rare event that a successor was not chosen, or the High Abbot is forced from their position, a convention of lesser abbots is called at the Abbey of the Unceasing Tide to make a selection.

Duties

On the broadest level, the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide is entrusted with directing the Order of the Unceasing Tide, being its ultimate and absolute leader. This also makes the High Abbot the Order's foremost priest, and making them responsible for the spiritual health of both the Order, and the Dokhar League as a whole. Additionally, they are meant to guarantee the sanctity and quality of the Order's incoming acolytes.

Responsibilities

Originally, the position of the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide was to run the Abbey of the Unceasing Tide, and personally educate the acolytes being trained to become Andokh Renar. However, ever since the Order was restructured following the loss of Lo Dokh and the War of Shadow, and the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide was made the Order's leader, these responsibilities have been conventionally delegated.   As the leader of the Order, the High Abbot has responsibilities both bureaucratic and ritualistic. They lead the Order as a political organization, setting its agenda and plotting the course to achieve it, while also overseeing the Order's financial well-being and maintaining its standing in society. They have a number of aides which assist in these tasks, but it ultimately falls to them. The the Order's highest priest, the High Abbot performs its most sacred rites and ceremonies. Sometimes these are done in isolation, others in large company; sometimes in secret, others in public.

Benefits

The Abbot of the Unceasing Tide enjoys a life of splendor and luxury. They hold one of the most esteemed and respected positions in Dokhar society, and receive a massive stipend for their personal expenses. Furthermore, they have only the same sacred restriction placed upon any of the Andokh Renar, none of which forbid conventional pleasures—so long as they do not interfere with the High Abbots duties.

Accoutrements & Equipment

While they generally hold on to the ritual drums they had previously upon as keepsakes, attaining the role of the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide brings with it very specific ritual equipment. Instead of their old Kharo, the use one which was made from the largest known sea monster ever encountered, which had been employed by Dorakh Mul during the War of Shadow. The body of the drum is made from one of its bones, and the membrane from the lining of its largest stomach.   The High Abbot also possesses two sets of ceremonial clothing, made from the leather of the skin of the aforementioned beast: a flowing, many layered robe, soft despite its material nature; and set of armor, which is as strong as metal. The High Abbot uses the former during ceremonies in a time of peace, the latter in war. They always fit whoever holds the rank perfectly, despite having been filled by many different persons with many different body types over the centuries.

Grounds for Removal/Dismissal

In the event that the Abbot of the Unceasing Tide has broken the vows they took upon becoming one of the Andokh Renar, or has been derelict in the duties of their role, their fitness for the role may be challenged by any fully trained Andokh Renar. When this happens, three lesser abbots—chosen by the accuser—accompany the High Abbot to the deepest part of the Abbey of the Unceasing Tide, the Pool of Sacrifice. The High Abbot then ritualistically bathes in the Pool. If they emerge, they are declared innocent; otherwise, it is assumed their life has been claimed by the Tide for violations, and their chosen successor in considered invalid. If the High Abbot is declared innocent, the accuser is forced to bathe in the Pool, only to emerge if the accusation was made in the earnest belief that the High Abbot was guilty.   Additionally, if a High Abbot believes that they have become unfit for the role—due to age, sickness, or some other factor, they may resign. However, their chosen successor is also considered officially invalid, because their faculties were deficient at the time of choosing, but will likely be given preference when the convention of abbots is called.

Type
Religious, Clerical
Alternative Naming
High Abbot
Source of Authority
Theoretically, Wisdom, and possession of the deepest connection to the Tide in the known world.
Length of Term
Indefinite
Related Locations

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