Lesser Idols, A Primer in Zheng-Kitar | World Anvil

Lesser Idols, A Primer

The semi-divine beings who inhabit the material, capable of granting power to those who need or ask for it

Almost Gods

  As a unique breed of divinity all their own, Lesser Idols sit below the ranks of the Spirit Kings, Elemental Lords, and Elemental Saints as beings that hold a spark of divinity but in no ways resemble divines in the way most other beings recognize them. Instead, they exist as beings who are not completely divine, but carry some tiny fragment of it within them - such as a creature who, while supremely powerful, cannot typically sustain clerics, paladins, inquisitors, and normal such ranks of faithful, as they instead tend to rely on more personal encounters to build their flock, such as making deals with creatures near death or in dire circumstances.   In this way, Lesser Idols typically have a much closer relationship with those that serve them - typically communing with them personally, giving them tasks personally, and actively working their will through them and taking an active role in the lives of those who have agreed to worship them(Or have made deals to do so). This typically sees them much more suited to witches, warlocks, and others who seek power in unorthodox ways outside the bounds of normal divines.  

Tangible Divinity

  To this end, Lesser Idols are also incredibly well known for being the most tangible and mortal among all the types of divines in reality - whereas a being like the Spirit Kings, Elemental Lords, or even the fairly relatable Elemental Saints are wholly divine but on a level so far removed from mortals and the material plane that the mere act of finding them and meeting them in person is a notion completely foreign to most people - beings that one knows of, but has accepted that "meeting" them is beyond all mortalkind.   Lesser Idols, on the otherhand, are very much real, and tangible - it is no stretch or crazy thought to imagine meeting a Lesser Idol, for they could be no more than a wizard who studied for so long as to attain immortality through his studies, gaining so much magical power that they figured out a secretive ritual to imbue themselves with a "divine spark" - and thus became able to collect a small following of faithful. They are real, and very much based in the material plane - and are all those who, like the Elemental Saints, come from the ranks of mortal creatures or beasts and even monsters who are born with or accrue extraordinary power to become something 'more' - something capable of bestowing divine power unto others. As such, they are those that mortals, given a proper inclination and ability to do so, could find on travels throughout the world - such as Father Ferrolis, who is well-known to inhabit the reactor-core of the legendary warship Bushūbunáo, The Salvaged Supercarrier, capital of The Gāngtao Migrant Fleet.   In this way, Lesser Idols are Gods that one can touch, see, and interact with - real beings on the material plane that, while powerful, have yet to abandon their mortal coil and enter the realm of the truly divine beyond the reach of mortalkind.  

List of Lesser Idols

  Below is a list of all Lesser Idols current known and active on and around the continent of Zheng-Kitar - more information on these beasts or creatures can be found on their respective pages, linked below.  
Azaliah the Purifier
Character | Nov 13, 2022

The invincible commander of the armies of the Celestial Host, fallen and trapped forever within the City of a Thousand Smiths.

Myth | Jun 18, 2021

The Husk of Light and one of the legendary engines of destruction.

Cao Lu
Character | Oct 12, 2022

The infamous tyrant who once conquered all of Zheng-Kitar beneath his banner of oppression and suffering.

Character | Jan 23, 2023

The Horseman of Death and Master of the realm of Gehenna, lord of the five rivers and survivor of the Cosmic Gloam.

Character | Jan 5, 2023

The mysterious machine god entombed in the moon of Yethema far above the surface of Ea, relic of a time long past and herald of a dead people.

Character | Dec 8, 2021

The mysterious figure that rules over the city of Axiom.

Father Ferrolis
Character | May 3, 2021

The screaming spirit of the greatest ship to sail the seas of Zheng-Kitar.

Myth | May 3, 2021

The Husk of Air, and one of the legendary Engines of Destruction.

Jilixia Worldthrone
Character | Sep 20, 2023

Granddaughter of the Demon Queen and sadistic bully, torturer, and public enemy of all Zheng-Kitar.

Myth | Aug 26, 2022

The Husk of Earth, and one of the legendary engines of Destruction.

Kyra Aenai
Character | Apr 19, 2023

The towering god-queen of the High Lamia, last of her line.

Lesser Idols, A Primer
Generic article | Nov 13, 2022

The semi-divine beings who inhabit the material, capable of granting power to those who need or ask for it.

Character | May 3, 2021

The ancient, ineffable being from whom the rot of reanimation spreads, and from whom the first undead were born.

The Enenra
Myth | Mar 1, 2023

The demon of choking flame that steals the breath of children and slays all in its path.

The Judazhai
Myth | Mar 1, 2023

The titanic dragon-snake that slumbers eternal, bringer of the end when it wakes.

The Wanderer
Character | May 3, 2021

The lumbering titan that roams the furthest reaches of the Shenchuan Tundra.

Mysterious Beings of Power

The ranks of those who count themselves as Lesser Idols, while rare, come from an enormous variety of moralities both good, evil and in between - Lesser Idols can have agendas that can run the spectrum from good to evil to neutral, but are united in their mystery, such that they accept and promote other lesser beings to accept their power to achieve some unknown goal for them. While some may be more open with these goals than others, the exact means and reasons which they seek followers and to spread their power can range from seeking freedom from a prison they are locked in, spreading their faith further and defeating specific enemies, to even goals as mysterious as going to certain places and performing strange, ritualistic tasks...or even fetching odd magical items from across the land and giving them back to the idol themselves.   So, while some followers of Lesser Idols may get lucky and find themselves in service to a patron of relatively non-evil morality, they will almost always still find themselves in a relationship infinitely more mysterious but altogether more personal than those of clerics and paladins and the like - in service to a being of unfathomable power who often offers things in exchange for carrying out their holy or unholy will in the world at large and acting as agents for them.   Such it is that those who come to worship a lesser idol are either sought out by the Idol in question and are given a bargain in a situation they cannot refuse(Such as being near death and being given a deal to be returned to life in exchange for service), or instead sought out the Idol themselves to recieve a boon in exchange for service or worship, such as wishing to bring a loved one back from death or to protect them from an impending death. Few followers of Lesser Idols do so out of true and actual faith, and instead do so out of pacts, bargains or deals - recieving something in exchange for being given something...a fact which makes Lesser Idols beings that even athiests or nonbelievers can understand and even support, as the notion of "Quid Pro Quo" is fairly universal, and simple - an eye for an eye, and help for help...


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