The Divine Union
The Divine Union is an organised religious group in Haldrim. Due to Haldrim's theocratic structure, the religion carries central importance in the customs of the kingdom. They worship and venerate the union between The Father, Barad, and The Mother, Hesta, though these gods are not often referred to by name. Under the creation myth of Haldrim, the Speaking Races were born of the Mother and Father, rather than from Titans as many other myths claim.
Beliefs and PracticesThe central belief is that the Father, god of the Sky and Sun, was the first to ignite the fire within the Hearth of the Mother, thus giving birth to the Speaking Races, and providing them with fire, and thus warmth and food.
HearthMost Haldrimian houses are constructed around a central hearth, or fireplace. This hearth serves both as a place of worship, and a place to cook food and socialise. Each time the hearth is used for cooking, a sacrifice of a combustible portion of food (traditionally animal fat, though in impoverished regions this is often substituted with vegetable peels or stems) is made to the Mother.
MarriageWedding ceremonies are deeply important in Haldrimian culture. The union between two individuals reflect the Divine Union of the Mother and Father. During such rituals the groom is tasked with transporting a blue flame, lit from a Hearthflame at a temple or shrine, and using it to kindle the hearth at the newlyweds' new home (or home that they will live in together). In these cases
FuneralsFunerary pyres are used, and are lit with a red flame from the Hearthflame at a temple or shrine, transported from a temple. The burning of a corpse is believed to ascend it to the heavens to live with the father.
Orders and SectsAlthough the worshipers of this faith consider the marriage between the two gods more important than the individual gods themselves, some sects and orders of the faith lean towards the worship of one or the other.
Order of the Sacred FaithLed by Grand Inquisitor Tomas Santemada, the Hammer of heretics, the Light of Haldrim, the Savior of his country, the Honor of his Order. This is an order of Paladins and some Clerics who strive to uphold the Laws of the Father. They often travel to remote towns and territories of Haldrim, and conduct inquisitions into the religious practices of the local populace, weed out heretics and lead people to the Sacred Faith. Due to its distance from Haldrim proper, as well as its cosmopolitan influence as a port city, Inquisitor Santemada takes particular interest in Titan's Gate. He often travels the road through the Maw himself, accompanied by his High Hammers, a group of Paladins sworn to his service, and his Illuminators, a group of Augurs blessed with the ability to seek out evil magics and fiendish influence. The High Hammers are tasked with punishing the following sins:
- Heresy: Incorrect teachings and beliefs concerning the True Gods
- Apostasy: Loss of faith/conversion to forbidden gods
- Blasphemy: Speaking against the True Gods
- Anathema: Dealing in/practicing the forbidden magics
Flamekeeper SectPriests and Priestesses who protect and serve the people of Haldrim, providing sanctuary to the faithful and teachings to all those willing to listen. They erect great temples in honor of the Divine Union, each constructed around a central Hearth that contains the sacred Hearthfire. They are in charge of lighting the wedding and funeral torches from their Hearthfire, which is in turn lit from the Eternal Hearthfire. This fire is housed in the Pyrion Temple, situated in the foothills of the Broken Spine. When a new temple is constructed, or a Hearthfire is extinguished, a new Hearthfire must be obtained from the Pyrion Temple, and transported through Ignition Pilgrimages. These Pilgrimages have become increasingly more perilous with the fall of the Southern Sanction, and pilgrims must now traverse dangerous mountain passes to avoid the desecrated forest.
- Religious, Organised Religion
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