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Offline Davin Ragal

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Selune
« on: August 04, 2016, 02:52:50 AM »
Selune the Beauty


Beauty is everything in life

The Divine

Realm

Eldanar

Alignment

| Lawful  Good
| Neutral Good
| Chaotic Good
| Lawful  Neutral
| True   Neutral
| Chaotic Neutral
| Lawful  Evil
| Neutral Evil
| Chaotic Evil


Spheres of Influence

Love, Beauty, Passion

Persona

Selune is a very popular goddess in Entar’s pantheon, but also fairly controversial. Anyone wanting to enter into a long term marriage would contact one of Selune’s priests or priestesses to perform the service, but there are rumours of more extreme ‘pagan’ worshippers, who often perform orgies as a form of worship. However, despite this, Selune is worshipped by artists and sculptors as well, due to her love of beauty. These artists also worship Daidlin, due to his direct patronage of art.

Selune is supposedly a kind goddess, a lover of romance and art, but she is often seen as vain, an idol that none could ever possibly compare too. Despite this, her priesthood often sets out on missions to ‘beautify’ the area around their temples, and many gardens in major cities are funded entirely by her priests. Also, in a weird support of her love of romance, many temples offer a matchmaking service that is very popular across Entar.

Selune is also the goddess of passion, however, and as many know, passion can turn the kindest man or woman into a vengeful or obsessed being. There are tales of seduced men, and woman destroyed over protesting Selune’s nights with their husbands. None have been confirmed, but many are careful to never insult Selune’s right to any sentient being on the planet. However, she also supports other’s passion. The thin line between passion and love is walked by her, and it is sometimes hard to know whether she would interfere with a raping, or watch the passion of one of the parties demurely.

It is believed by many that Selune approves of beauty in everything, and to worship her, one must make an attempt to create beauty in everything they do. Therefore, many people who serve her make an attempt to beautify their homes and the places around them as well. Her patronage of love is best typified by many pagan cults of hers that engage in ceremonial orgies as a form of worship.

So, while Selune is best typified as a kind and loving goddess, Selune is also known to be harsh on those who stamp out on beauty, and the cults and priests that support her are often violent and aggressive against those who do. Also, her love of passion can warp that image of her into a matriarchal dominator, controlling the lives of those under her, which would be every loving being on the planet.

Power

Selune’s magic is immensely powerful, as she can draw on anything beautiful to fulfill her bidding. Her faith magic is mainly passive, though aggressive users of it are not unheard of.

The main focus of her magic is transformation. Why destroy something when you can make it beautiful instead? This is a philosophy observed by most users of her magic, and to go against it with her faith magic is equal to treachery.

Therefore, while the exact specifics of the magic vary, but the transformation of non-sentient, and inorganic objects is a common theme. As to this effect those who practice the faith magic are rarely combatant. Those who enter conflicts are usually limited to manipulating the objects in their immediate environment, but this generally takes great effort especially under the strain of combat. It is harder for them to affect anything in contact with another being, or to affect something in motion, but there are varing degrees of power within the faith, most choosing not to enter combat in the first place. With effort, an Avatar of Selune could raise their hand and turn an arrow flying at them into a harmless quartz pebble, which they would then hurl back at the aggressor as a beautiful carved dagger. This is an example of the upper echelon of power, reserved for one that represents a messenger of Selune in flesh.

Other examples of this transformation affecting conflicts include the transformative power of Selune turning shoddy equipment into exquisite, mastercrafted gear, as well as inciting passionate emotions in her followers to rally them.

However, rumours of another, much more dangerous type of magic exist. This ‘Magic of Passion’ is best described as being a direct outlet for the user’s emotions. Those who claim to have seen this in use describe it as being attacked by waves of emotion. They claim that the caster’s aura increased a thousand fold until it was visible with the naked eye. The magic is supposed to get weaker when the caster is in pain, and most powerful when the caster is aroused, physically or mentally.

And yet, Selune's greatest power lies outside of the arenas of sword and shield. There is almost no limit to what her influence over love and beauty can do for people all over Entar, whether it be fixing a lover's scorn, soothing a warrior more wounded in the mind than in the flesh or turning wrecked, derelict objects or even houses and streets into their lush, magnificent counterparts. Where Selune's faithful goes, smooth, delicious surroundings and a general aura of happiness and comfort follows.


Iconography

Avatar

Selune is generally depicted as a stunningly beautiful female, though her race varies greatly depending upon who is worshiping her. Most of the time, however, it is in the form of a high elf. She has ringlets of cascading and luxurious red hair dropping to her waist, held back with a crimson ribbon in her hair. Clothed in flowing robes of light pink and red, she is almost always depicted as having a calm expression on her face, with arms outstretched towards the viewers. Many pictures depict her in an alluring pose, as if summoning the viewer to come and sample the delights of the goddess of love. However, there are many in which she holds a mischievous, even vengeful look. She is almost never holding a weapon, and if she does, it’s a long, bladed spear, and it is usually accompanied by a more vengeful picture of Selune, one depicting something like a scorned lover.

Symbols

A dove in flight, and falling rose petals.

Colors

A light pink and deep, crimson red.

Sacred Objects

Flowers are very special to Selune, and many followers of Selune carry flowers or engravings or embroidery of flowers on their person. Roses are most popular, as they are a symbol of love to many people, and carvings and rose bushes adorn many of Selune’s temples. Also, most art is sacred to her followers, and good art is regarded in the highest esteem.

Sacred Texts

Sacred Texts of Selune are almost non-existent, and her rules exist as a set of ideals rather than written laws in a tome. However, the Church of Selune puts forth several tomes which they claim are real. The most prominent of these is the Book of Xerianes, actually a creation of the Bladewarriors and adapted by the Church to properly fit the ideals of Selune. The popularized version is short and succinct, mainly stating the ideals of Selune rather than in depth philosophy.

Real copies of the tome are rarer, and filled with inherent contradictions and many illegible passages where it seems the writer was taken with a religious fervor. They are, when they are found, hidden by the Church of Selune, who do not wish to anger Selune by destroying them, but would rather that the censored copy was released to the masses. Any cult owning a copy of the real tome is very popular, and there have been instances where a cult has totally taken control of an area away from the Church.


Followers

Favor

Selune supports those who create beauty, such as artists and sculptors. Builders and architects are also supposed to be favoured if they work hard to create beauty in what they do. Favour also rests upon those who protect beauty in all its ways, but those who use Selune’s name as a purpose for defending something walk a very fine line. After all, Selune above all understands that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.

Love is the world’s greatest treasure… at least to Selune. Those who cherish it, protect it, and exemplify the values of a loving, kind relationship with the world are most likely to fall under Selune’s favour.

However vain she may be on occasion, Selune is known to love beauty in people as well as art. However, what is beautiful to her may be hard to say. In the end, those who are beautiful on the outside are of less interest to her than those who are beautiful on the inside, though many clerics propose that this is actually not true, as many are chosen based on their looks.

The benefit of her favour most often lies in inspiration at critical moments, and also in the little things. The artist who suddenly decides to be bold and create something new, the housewife who decides to buy a new dress and the dancer who does a perfect routine are all things that would result from her favour.

After that there is the more ignored side of her favour, the side of her passion. There are cults who perform fertility and love rites sometimes almost every night, in worship of the goddess of passion, the goddess who will look down upon their wild orgies with satisfaction and favour.

As many know, though, it is hard to typify Selune into a form. She is always changing and adapting, one day supporting one ideal, other days discarding it entirely for something else, the way that she views love should be. Love should never be static to her, more filled with passion all the time. The old love of a couple that has been together for ages might bring a smile to her face, but it will never bring out the laughter of watching two young humans kissing for the first time. This also means, however, that her favour can rest upon those who commit rape out of passion just as easily as her disfavour. Again, those who worship Selune with passion walk a very fine line.

Disfavor

Selune absolutely despises those who destroy beauty or love in any form. That is what creates the contorted tenants of her religion. So while one might cut down a tree to make a beautiful chair, instead of praising you, Selune might curse you for having cut down the tree and defiled its beauty. Those who do will often find themselves cursed, and people will look upon them and see the true soul of that person clearly displayed on their face. Selune can tear apart those who have torn apart other’s love and lives, and will do so without mercy.

Selune is the goddess of love, and she takes pity upon those who are rejected in their obsession, but will not take retribution on those who reject it, as it is still not true love to her. However, one-sided love, where one party is merely taking advantage of the love of the other; causes her great ire, and that is one of the things that incurs her greatest wrath.

Strangely enough, passion can destroy love, and many say that Selune contradicts herself with her every footstep. But it never appears to bother Selune, and her take seems to be one of taking the middle road. Yes, passion may destroy love, but it can also create it. Those who outright destroy passion or love with no new passion or love created from the destruction, however, receive no mercy from her.

Finally, while she looks with pity upon those with no love in their life who seek it desperately, she despises those who regard it as foolish, and those who reject an offer of ‘true love’ have become scum in her eyes, destroyers of love. Many have regarded Selune as a relatively peaceful and vain goddess, but those people more often than not find themselves at the wrong end of her wrath.

The Faithful

Selune is worshipped by many different groups of people. Lovers praying for chances to meet, artists and architects, and even some dancers and fighters worship her. However, she has a very split base of worship among the artists and architects, as they also worship Daidlin, as Art is his domain. First, and most prominent of the groups that worship her, is the Church of Selune. An Entar spanning institution, they hold weekly services in their temples. The temples themselves are works of art, mosaics and statues line the walls and the floor, and some of the largest are architectural wonders. In the back of each is a garden with decorations depending on the location. In the far northern communities, rock gardens and hardy flowers make up the display, but in the more southern communities shrubbery mazes and flower beds are common. The church, however, can be at times power-hungry and in their quest to beautify Entar they have developed several money gaining plans. The most popular… and controversial… is a matchmaking service. The church will take applications from many different people, and then match them up with people who are ‘compatible’. True clerics of Selune are generally fairly good at the job, and many happy couples have resulted from the service. However, corrupt clerics have been known to take bribes to match up people with others who they aren’t necessarily ‘compatible’ with.

The next service that the church provides is the marriage of couples. A usually fairly expensive affair, the church will do it can to make your wedding the show of the year. However, due to scorn from the masses who often point out that they should also respect the love of the common people, they also offer small services for a small price, often run by low level clerics in the church.

It is important to note that the Church of Selune generally ignores the fact that Selune also supports Passion, and many suspect that the only reason Selune allows them to exist is that their matchmaking service generally creates enough passion and love to offset their refusal to accept that particular aspect of her nature.

But, there are many who regard the church as a cover for a group whose only interest is money. While there are quite a few legitimate clerics in the church, many still see them as a corrupt institution. The Bladewarriors of Selune are a private organization, and they exemplify the other side of beauty, the beauty of combat and whirring steel. Warriors in this group wield the long bladed spears that Selune is pictured as carrying, and use a distinctive twirling style of fighting, putting momentum behind their every blow. However, they are known to tie dark red ribbons onto their shoulders arms and spears, exemplifying the values of beauty in combat. Many say they are like a ‘deadly red whirlwind’. Their agenda, however, is just as hidden as the Church of Selune’s. However, in most recorded incidents, the Bladewarriors are seen to protect beauty in all its forms. Good or evil does not seem to matter to them. A Bladewarrior has been seen to prevent the removal of a beautiful drawing in blood on the wall, and then turn around and destroy the creator because he destroyed the murdered woman’s dress in the process. Their rules are a lot more complex than can be described, but it is generally understood that they also support Selune’s patronage of love. It is generally advised to be very careful around members of this organization, as some are more or less tolerant than others. This group also tends to tone down the tenants of passion that Selune supports, but they do encourage passion in the defense of beauty and in the Bladewarrior’s private lives..

Beyond that, cults who declare that they stand for the ‘primal’ Selune are common in Entar. They present a problem for the Church of Selune, because they are inherently more popular than the services in the temples. The reason is simple. Most radical cults practice orgies as a form of worship to Selune, a direct contradiction to the Church, which proclaims a more ‘traditional’ love. Cults are also popular among artists and architects, who, while leaving out the orgies, will still create works of art to present in worship to Selune. The cults of artists also worship Daidlin, and they are near indistinguishable from Daidlin's worshippers. The everyday cults of Selune mainly focus on the passion and love that Selune endorses, while the artists cults focus more on the beauty.

Prominence

Selune is a very popular goddess, and worship of her is widespread, especially in artist communities. She is also often seen as a pagan goddess, however, and many people shun worship of her for that reason. The Church of Selune has done it’s very best to bring people into the worship of her, but she still remains more popular in the Northern kingdoms than the south, though she has seen a revival in the Southlands.


Quote

“Beauty is inherent in everything. You just have to look, and you’ll see it, and like a wave cresting on the shoreline, you will be exposed to the wonders of the world for a moment before you fade back into the dull simplicity of life.” – Uncensored version of the Book of Xerianes.


Credits

  • Original Concept and Write-up: Elphinstone
  • Revised Edition: Davin Ragal & Zyrphath
« Last Edit: September 21, 2016, 08:42:59 AM by Zyrphath »

Online Zyrphath

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Re: Selune
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2016, 11:04:14 AM »
Selune's concept appeals to me, but I take issue with one of her primary combat traits, namely the whole transformation thing. Turn an arrow into a pebble and throw it back as a dagger? I would understand if Selune herself were capable of this feat, but beyond that I find it a bit over the top. Not to mention how hard it would be for a player character to apply such powers fairly.

I have no suggestion for a remedy as of right now, but I will hold off on the approval until we can tweak it into something that is easier to balance.
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Offline Davin Ragal

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Re: Selune
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2016, 03:03:27 AM »
I have made some changes, namely that followers tend not to be combatants, those who are find it nigh impossible to manipulate anything in contact with another being, and will be unlikely be able to manipulate anything in motion.

The example you gave is now mentioned as something an Avatar could potentially do.

Online Zyrphath

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Re: Selune
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2016, 08:45:16 AM »
Added a few details to the power section both to expand on the combat-related powers, as well as to emphasize the non-combat parts. Coupled with the changes you added in the last edit, my issues are entirely gone and the doc can be regarded as approved for my part.
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