Die Reichskirche

Cap

Lord of Altera


'One people, one country, one God!'

Die Reichskirche, translated to Common as 'the Imperial Church', is the religious organization of Anhald dedicated to the worship of Ignis Synnove, the one true God. The symbol of the church is a white shield with three black crosses, representing God, the Angels, and Man in their hierarchy.



THE CREATION OF ALL

In the first short seconds of time, there was nothing but Ignis Synnove, who always had existed and always will exist. And then there was perfection. The limitless realm Ignis Synnove made, that could not be defined or understood.

Ignis Synnove made the angels to serve and obey, and in exchange for their service made a second realm, a lower plane that was as close to good and perfect as an imperfect being can understand.

Ignis Synnove said to the servants ‘Know that I am the perfect being and my power is limitless. You will call me God and serve me. In return, I give you the Sublime.’

The angels became victims of sin, and God cleansed their sin so that the Sublime remained pure. The sin manifested into the demons, who were the enemy of God. But God was merciful and did not destroy the demons, and so created them their own realm which was as close to evil and unbearable as an imperfect being can understand

God said to the demons ‘Know that I am the perfect being and my power is limitless. You will call me God and fear me. In return, I spare you in my mercy, but Damn you to this base realm.’

And so the demons feared God in their Damned place, and the angels served God in their Sublime place, and there was harmony. Between the two lesser planes existed the remnants of the angels’ sin, which manifested into souls that were not evil as the demons were and not good as the angels were.

God took pity on the souls who had no place to call their own. They would not be sentenced to the Damned Plane as the demons were, because they were not evil. They would not be welcomed to the Sublime Plane as the angels were, because they were not good. God made them the Mortal Plane, and set his angels to judge them.

The angels made the souls a form in their own image, and the souls became man. The angels took the greatest men into the Sublime to live as the angels did. They took the lesser men into the Sublime to serve themselves and the greatest men, just as God had made the angels his servants. They Damned the worst men, who were so evil that they could not be trusted as servants.

God saw that the angels had made man their own form. God said to man ‘Know that I am the perfect being and my power is limitless. You will call me God and thank me. In return, I give you three gifts and three responsibilities.’

The first gift and responsibility given by God was free thought. Man may use his free thought and choose to serve God, and then join the greatest souls in the Sublime plane. Should man not use his free thought, then he is neither good nor evil, and will serve the greatest souls who live as kings in the Sublime. But man may abuse his free thought and choose to be evil, and then be Damned with the worst souls.

The second gift and responsibility given by God was light. Light was man’s glimpse into the Sublime, where the greatest lived as kings. Should man love light, then he would know to use his free thought to serve God. But should man scorn light, then he would not know what to do with free thought, and be drawn to evil.

The third gift and responsibility given by God were the beasts. The beasts were man’s servants on the Mortal plane. Man may respect the beasts, and use them and consume them no more than he needs, and then he would have the understanding of respect needed to enjoy the Sublime plane. But should man not respect the beasts, and overwork them and consume like a glutton, then he would not understand respect and be drawn to evil.

With these gifts, the Mortal realm of man was complete, and forever on he was to live and be judged on his use of God’s gifts. Harmony was found in God’s creation.



ON THE PLANES OF BEING

The world man knows exists on the second of four planes of existence. The hierarchy of the planes are-

- The Divine Plane
- The Sublime Plane
- The Mortal Plane
- The Damned Plane

The Divine Plane cannot be comprehended by man. Only the higher minds of the angels and demons can understand Ignis Synnove’s realm of unlimited beauty and power. Man is not permitted to ever join Ignis Synnove in the Divine.

The Sublime Plane is the angels’ world, of beautiful light and fire. The souls of man ascend to the Sublime to live alongside the angels if they are good, or to serve the angels if they are wicked. This plane has no sunset, forever bathed in light. Heavenly versions of all the beautiful and and pious places of the Mortal plane can be found here.

The Mortal Plane is man’s world. It is flawed and exists to test man, to judge what souls will ride eternal through the Sublime as kings and what souls will serve as slaves. In day, the Mortal plane bridges into the Sublime. This is the sun. In night, the Mortal plane bridges into the Damned. This is the moon. The sun of the Mortal Plane is also interpreted as the judging eye of Ignis Synnove, or the form Ignis manifests itself in on this plane.

The Damned Plane is the demons’ world. It is home to the most wicked souls who cannot be bent to serve in the Sublime, and the demons who were banished from the Sublime for refusing to serve Ignis Synnove. This place has no sunrise, forever dark. Hellscape versions of all the dark and wicked places of the Mortal plane can be found here.
 
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Cap

Lord of Altera




ON THE PHYSICAL FORMS OF ANGELS

The angels are said to take a mortal form, and it is said that they may walk amongst man to gift boons to the faithful and punish the wicked. Although angels are said to be servants of the Divine, they do not have the limitless power of Ignis Synnove. All angels, understandably, are depicted as Anhalder men and women. Foreigners in the church sometimes imagine them as their own race.

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The Grey Lady is depicted as a small old peasant crone. She hunches over and hobbles about with a cane. Despite being an angel, she is often associated with witches. It is said that making eye contact with her means you will die within the year.

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Theodra is depicted as a brunette woman in a chain hauberk, armed with a longbow and a quiver of magically flaming arrows. She is most often seen as a companion of Crusade or alongside Sallana. Legend says that if infidels threaten to destroy Anhald, Crusade and Theodra will ride in on white horses to rout them.

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Vermella is depicted as a brunette child, usually a girl, in a red cloak with a doctor’s tools. She is not often shown in holy books or churches due to a lack of worshippers. It is illegal to depict her as a Caparii like foreigners do, as it is seen as comparing the Divine to demons. She is sometimes seen as a follower of Sallana.

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Crusade is depicted as a man in full plate with a helm concealing his face. It is said that if the visor is lifted, all that is inside is a blinding white light. He carries a magically flaming sword and is most often seen as a companion of Theodra. Legend says that if infidels threaten to destroy Anhald, Crusade and Theodra will ride in on white horses to rout them.

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Jax is depicted as a brown haired man in a merchant’s clothes. It is said that if Jax walks among men and is confronted, he will give the one who finds him a golden coin and disappear as soon as they are distracted.

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Silas is depicted as an elderly priest, bald except for his beard, in a white or grey monk’s robe. He is usually seen carrying a book of Ignis’ commandments bound in white leather and a blue rose, the only colour he has on him. Peasants say that attempting to read Silas’ book makes you go blind.

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Korog is depicted as a bearded black haired craftsman, carrying a mason’s tools and a blacksmith’s hammer that can break through the strongest stone. Symbols of Korog are carved in key foundation stones by masons. This is done to ask for his blessing for safe construction and a sturdy building.

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Sallana is depicted as a beautiful black haired noblewoman, who is followed around by cherub-esque children. Theodra is often depicted as a servant or companion of Sallana, as they are both associated with family.

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Shalherana is depicted as an elderly nun in a white or grey nun’s robe, like Silas. Unlike Silas, she is depicted with more colour, usually carrying a basket of fruits and vegetables. It is said that her basket conceals a sword inside.

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Rahas is depicted as a brown haired and clean shaven nobleman. He carries a scales and a dagger, and it is said that he takes the form of a man to hunt and kill heretics. Some depictions show him instead as a headsman.



ON THE PHYSICAL FORMS OF DEMONS

The demons are said to take a mortal form as well, but to trick man into betraying God. Whereas the angels are always depicted as human, the demons are always depicted as being beast races or monsters.

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Jishrim is depicted as a mischievous greyling in black robes. He is associated with spiders and snakes, and it is said that if Jishrim touches you, they will escape from the sleeves of his robe and poison you. He is said to haunt the houses of sinners, and the poison from his vermin turn men into heretics.

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Skraag is depicted as the skeleton of a man or elf, wearing plate armour and riding a black horse with empty eyes. He carries a lance, and the scalps of the dead hang from it like ribbons. Other depictions of him show him as a standard bearer instead of a lancer, carrying a flayed skin and dangling human skulls on a pike. Soldiers say that he rides battlefields after the fighting is done, to collect the souls of infidels.

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Visage is depicted as a Caparii or an actual goat-man, who plays a flute that lures the weak minded to heretical thoughts. Peasants fear the deep woods, where it is believed that Visage dances around fires. Anyone lured into his dance by the magical flute playing is killed and sacrificed in pagan ceremony. Visage is said to shift forms into any race, but can be told apart by an eye shaped mark on his forehead regardless of appearance.
 
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Cap

Lord of Altera




MARRIAGE

A marriage as officiated by the church is a two day affair. On the first day, the engaged couple pray alone for a healthy family and loving marriage. They go through their day as normal until noon, when they must retire to the church to be alone with no others except a priest to govern their prayer. Guests invited to the wedding are expected to join them at nightfall, and the prayers last through the night.

The actual binding marriage occurs at dawn, equating the rise of a new family to that of the Sun. The rest of the day is given to celebrations, which are chosen by the couple and their guests instead of the church. However, the priest will remain present until the last guests have left. Typically, friends of the couple will leave first, followed by their family, their liege lord (if attending), and finally the priest.



FUNERALS

A funeral is not a sad day for a true believer, because it is passage from this world to the next. It is believed that only through burning the bodies of the dead can you free their soul from their mortal form, allowing it to ascend to the Sun or be Damned. Because of this, funerals for the pious can only be held during the hours of daylight, and funerals for the sinful can only be held during the night.

The body is to be burned in the clothing worn at the time of death, so long as it is in good condition. Warriors who die in battle are burned in ceremonial armour if they are wealthy, or the armour they were slain in if they are poor. Wearing the armour an ancestor was slain in is considered honourable among knights. It is also forbidden to hide wounds or marks of illness, because it is dishonest. Cleaning is acceptable, as is veiling the face if it is unrecognizable.

Burned with the body are the closest personal effects of the deceased, including but not limited to- weapons, portraits of their family, jewellery, holy symbols, and prized gifts. It is forbidden to burn family heirlooms or books, as they are more useful intact. The burning of these material possessions symbolizes the deceased taking them with them to the Sublime plane. The ashes of peasants are scattered in a place with meaning to the deceased, or kept in an urn by the family. Noblemen are stored in crypts.



DUELING

To be legally recognized, all duels must be officiated and approved of by a priest. A legal duel should take place during the hours of daylight, ideally starting at dawn to give the combatants as much time to fight as necessary. Postponing for the night is not unheard of. If the challenger withdraws his challenge at any point during the duel, it does not end until the challenged accept his withdrawal.

The combatants must be given a choice of any arms they request by the host, with the exception of bows. It is polite but not required to take the same weapon as your opponent. The challenger chooses first, to allow the challenged an opportunity to take a useful weapon to counter. The duel commences when both combatants inform the priest officiating their duel that they are ready and that priest declares the beginning of the duel.

Duels made without legal recognition from the church are murder, and a duel that began at night is illegitimate. If an illegitimate duel does not end in the death of either opponent, it will be tried as assault. Dueling after a priest expressly forbids it is heretical.
 
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Cap

Lord of Altera
taking a 4th just in case

started compiling all the religious lore i've written and decided it should be posted
 

Sir Arc

Lord of Altera
Mystic
Sir_Arc
Sir_Arc
Mystic
Yay! this looks lit, this is basically what I love (first comment other then cap)
 
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CyberChaosV2

Lord of Altera
Wasn't ever really interested in ignis, couldn't wrap my head around worshipping one and renouncing others if the rest were literally right there, but I really like how that's addressed, might lead me to play a follower of ignis at some point, great job cap!
 

RagingLunacy

Lord of Altera
Lover
Hollicynthea
Hollicynthea
Lover
Oh dear... When Visage is respresented as a Caparii but Vermella isn't allowed to be because it's seen as a demonic representation.
 

Tot

Lord of Altera
Legend
MemeLordTot
MemeLordTot
Legend
- Jax is depicted as a brown haired man in a merchant’s clothes. It is said that if Jax walks among men and is confronted, he will give the one who finds him a golden coin and disappear as soon as they are distracted.
Better get my gold coins and smoke bombs ready . . .
 
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