Saturday, May 13, 2017

A Divine Omisson

One of the most appealing aspects of Jorune was the absence of one of the most poorly developed aspects of most role playing game - artificial religion.

Jorune did not offer a pantheon of Gods, nor a thinly disguised Terran religion appearing unchanged over 3,500 years. There was no automatic assumption of religious organization or conflict, but there were suggestions of a deep spiritual life – of a respect for what they know to be true without justification and privilege of a priesthood or sacred class.

There is a type of Christianity. The Mundells, who teach that Jorune is God's punishment for leaving earth, but there is no mention of a surviving book to justify other beliefs for activities.

Shanthat at a Cle Eshta
The native Shantha have a belief in "Sho Caudal", or the Isho Wind, from which their awareness comes and to which it goes, and that belief extends into other awareness, including plants and, to some extent, stone - particularly isho bearing crystal. Cracking crystal to gain power is viewed much the same way as killing animals for meat. Sometimes, that is what you do. Although they have presented as vegetarian, surviving on a mossy water plant grown in their dark, undermountain cities, I don't know that that is true of all Shantha. The different groupings are not just based on color of isho, but there are physical differences that are associated with each ca- (or kie-). There will be a nice chunk on this in the second issue of the new Sholari magazine - "The Name of the Planet".

David Ackerman's Crugar
Iscin races revere their creator, the bio-scientist Theodore Iscin of the original Earth Colony who created their various species in a lab, now lost, somewhere in the Gauss Valley. Crugar particularly have demonized the opponent of Iscin, the bio-scientist Karl Bomoveris. This was the man who created a Shantha killing virus and who, according to Crugar tradition, murdered Iscin and scattered his creations to the wild. Bronth tell a slightly different tale and Woffen agree with the Bronth version, which puts the blame for Iscin's death on the first Crugar, Chowndra (which has become a Woffen insult when facing down Crugar). It is not clear if Blount have a religous thought stream, yet. And no one knows the Tologran view of spiritual reality. Yet.

Thriddle seem to have a paranoid worship of information in any form. They document, archive, hire querrids to do field work they do not want (or are too afraid) to do. They know the true history of Jorune going back to the Lamorri invasion. They live in the old Lamorri base that is the Mountain Crown in the middle of massive collection of artifacts as a closed museum, and issue thousands of reports, many in readable languages in scroll or book format. But it is not clear if that works into a belief system we would call "spiritual". Or maybe we do not yet appreciate the nature of their alien social construct. We have recently learned that Thriddle are not an homogeneous mass - there are lumps in the gravy. Factions vie for power, or to maintain secrets, from each other, but definitely from the other intelligent races that have grown into a savage competition for control of the planet.

Ramian seem to find what we would consider a religious satisfaction of being the last one standing after combat with an intelligent race or a beast. Sometimes with each other. The last one alive seems to be of great importance to them and is the closest we can come to a Ramian spiritual belief. So far.

Thivin have only been known on Jorune for a short while and their belief appears to be simple. Work. Work much. Work hard. Work good. Breed. Work more. Get paid. Work more. A Thivin who daydreams is rear, but should get some attention. What happens when master weapon smiths come up with a new idea? And is that spiritual?

Tologra are the most recently revealed race and we know almost nothing of their society or thought. Maybe a Querrid will report back from Sharden. Soon. I'm sure are already Querrid's on assignment in that distant land.

Cleash. And their chemically enslaved Scarmis. And the non-enslaved free Scarmis. We cannot even describe how they think, much less their thoughts on metaphysical concepts or realities. And it would most likely not be a comforting thing to understand. Maybe.

It is a the shallow imitation of Earth based belief systems that has been the dragging anchor of many other world settings. It isn't a thinly disguised soap box from which to preach a poorly conceal prostletization of all-too-familiar contemporary schools of religious thought.

It is a nice Rorschadt of open spaces where the reader and player can insert their own thoughts and call them "Jorune".

Which is another reason I go back to my favorite Jorune as often as I can.

And I have made my own Jorune to return to.

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