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  • marin
    started a topic Abrahamic Pantheon?

    Abrahamic Pantheon?

    Discussion moved here from the Scion: Origin thread.

  • Thrythlind
    replied
    I generally assume God is real and doesn't correspond to anything described in the rules. But I only bring that up when it's the subject already.

    Also I'm one of those Christians who has this crazy idea that it is not so wise to put blind faith in a book that has been through hundreds or even thousands of mortal hands over the course of thousands of years.

    That said. I'd be happy to see a pantheon of angels and saints. We have some precedence for saints as it stands in the fact that the Celestial Bureaucracy has the capability to transform mortals into scions.

    The Celestial Bureaucracy and the Abrahamic religions share a tendency to exalt heroes who had no particular divine heritage to start with and were simply men and women that were paragons of appropriate behavior.

    I'm reminded of an Oh My Goddess fanfic where Belldandy was referring to another Goddess and commented "though she prefers to be called a Saint. The Christians are funny that way." Said goddess/saint was Joan of Arc.

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  • ZealousChristian24
    replied
    True, true, perhaps I overreacted.

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  • Ajax
    replied
    El wasn't much more than a whipping boy living in a tent by the time of the Ba'al Cycle. He was afraid of Yam and gave him the kingship. He was afraid of Baal wanting a palace because he was afraid of Yam. He got the crap beaten out of him by Anat. He was afraid of Ba'al (again). He was afraid of Mot. So, if you are going to postulate any sort of Yahweh on Ba'al throw down, El would probably have been up on his mountain hiding in his tent and waiting fearfully for someone else to show up and beat him up or extort something from him (which he would promptly give them, if they would just leave him alone).

    I think you could pretty easily have a Cannaanite pantheon and address the Abrahamic issue in a sidebar, just like you can when dealing with the Loa in the Orisha write-up. Just don't mention Yahweh, put him the pantheon, etc. Just keep things tied down to the Cannaanite myths, leave out anything that appears in the Old Testament related to how the Israelites dealt with the people they were trying to displace. Like, say, how you don't have to gut the Epic of Gilgamesh and slice and dice a Sumerian pantheon to get the whole Utnapishtim and the Flood thing out of there, take out the Egyptian gods since Moses threw down with them, etc. etc. Just don't talk about it and telegraph that you aren't talking about it.

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  • ZealousChristian24
    replied
    In all honesty, I think our Onyx Path Overlords should just not even touch the topic, save maybe a sidebar adresssing how they're not addressing it. Mostly because the group in Companion sucks, and because I simply fear any answer on this subject will just lead to tears and flame wars; Oh, so many flame wars.

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  • JackalopeVegas
    replied
    Originally posted by That Other Guy View Post
    In fact, it's much easier for me to just post the link below for reference - it's an essay entitled "Monotheism in Traditional Yoruba Religion", and it's far better articulated and sourced than I could hope to be. Here's the summary for the tl;dr crowd

    http://organizations.uncfsu.edu/ncrs...ade_yoruba.htm

    -------------------

    Early researchers were biased and prejudicial in their analysis about the Yoruba concept of God. What we have learned by examining the concept of God by the Yoruba is that the Yoruba religion is monotheistic. From various names given to Olodumare, a clear picture of God emerges. He is seen as the Lord of the sky, the Creator of all mankind, the Giver of life and He is seen as invisible. Because of the invisibility of God, the Yoruba make no concerted efforts to erect a shrine of Him or any kind of "physical representation" (Opoku, p. 18). Although, the deities are revered, they are created by God to serve specific functions just as the angels are created to serve God.
    Thanks for the link. This changes my opinion on Shango, as in the info, Shango resembles more like Zeus and Odin, as that he's also called a God of Thunder and usually does what he does to make sure that trouble doesn't harm the people. (Sorry for the grammar length.) If his title reflects his storm purview, then it might be more palatable for some players to use a Scion of Shango in their games as well.

    Going back on topic, in my opinion, the Cannanite pantheon reflects the statement quite well. I believe that in the Book of Isaish(?), there was a situation where there were some Israelites still worshipping Baal. It was there that a test happened and Baal lost to God. Looking back on Caananite lore, Yahweh (the war god) defeated Baal for El's throne. His next life choices decimated the pantheon that the Caananites worshipped. I could see Yahweh as a god who became paranoid about the other pantheons, who would see his actions as a possible sign of aggression. This would lead into an Overworld version of the Cold War where everyone is waiting with baited breath for the other shoe to drop. The other gods of the former pantheon would band together and probably do guerilla tactics and/or plead the other pantheons to intervene on their behalf. And whatever happened to El after his defeat to Baal? That is what I see for this pantheon.

    As for those who think this is not viable, I understand. Just keep in mind, that having a world where the old gods exist, but isn't known to the Vatican, Mossad and the Ayallatollah, and isn't being reacted to badly, by people like the Westboro Baptists, etc., seems equally as unreal (at least to me.)

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  • Squee
    replied
    The subject of the Abrahamic faiths certainly ought to come up in gameplay. It has in any game I've ever been involved in, either running or playing. At some point someone is going to ask "So, is God real?". And then the ST has to decide how the question is going to be answered in the course of the game.

    Honestly I've never seen Aten used in any game I've been in (or used him myself) as an explanation about God. In my opinion there are far better ways to address it.

    But, that being said, I don't believe that my alternatives or the ones that I've seen used in gameplay as a player would satisfy someone wanting an Abrahamic-as-written presence in the game. Or that they'd fly in an official written-in-book format.

    In the interests of not de-railing the thread I'd be happy to PM with anyone who's interested in some of the in-game-answers to whether the Abrahamic faiths are 'real' and what they're doing if so. But I don't think any of them would satisfy all (or in some cases any) of the criteria Thrythlind mentioned earlier and some of them (if you happen to be a real-life devout follower) could be quite offensive. Obviously each was tailored toward the beliefs and feelings of the RP group.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    Originally posted by Thrythlind View Post
    That said, White Wolf is rather blatantly unfriendly to the Abrahamic faiths, so it is unlikely we'll get a good rendition.
    I wouldn’t go that far. I know of a number of fans who are rather blatantly unfriendly to the Abrahamic faiths; but the actual staff that writes the books? If they’ve got a chip on their shoulder with regard to the Abrahamic faiths, they tend to be more subtle about it.

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  • ZealousChristian24
    replied
    Originally posted by samcwic View Post
    I don't care what they do with monotheism, just as long as they don't bring back the Order of Divine Glory. To put Abrahamic faiths in your game is one thing, to call it a sham is quite another.
    Yeah, they were kind of the opposite of my favorite thing in Companion. At least the Yankee Pantheon can be said to have class!

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  • samcwic
    replied
    I don't care what they do with monotheism, just as long as they don't bring back the Order of Divine Glory. To put Abrahamic faiths in your game is one thing, to call it a sham is quite another.

    Leave a comment:


  • Thrythlind
    replied
    The Abrahamic Religions are something every existing pantheon has dipped into for one reason or another. Even the Chinese and Japanese have made minor dips into it. It is probable that both Odin and Zeus have impersonated the Christian God at least once or twice. That is practically Aten's entire schtick (admittedly because the gods tied him to that mythology rather than his own efforts). Canonically, the monotheistic thing is also being driven by a cult of mortals who are aware of Fate and trying to use Fatebinding to comerge all the various pantheons into one universal pantheon under a single god that they could control and thus be the secret rulers of the universe.

    My personal take on God in any work of fiction or gaming is as follows:

    God, as in the Creator of everything, exists.

    Nothing with stats, limits or any sort of definition is God.

    Nothing malevolent is God.

    No particular mechanic is related to the will of God.

    Whether God is involved in any particular event is up to personal interpretation.

    All afterlifes are just a higher plane of mortal existence with a true afterlife beyond that.

    Whatever the game says, souls are indestructible. When souls are "destroyed" somehow, that person's soul has simply moved on past the bounds of that reality.

    This is my personal opinion and not something to bring up unless someone asks or the topic is already being discussed because it will just provoke needless arguments about things.

    That said, White Wolf is rather blatantly unfriendly to the Abrahamic faiths, so it is unlikely we'll get a good rendition.

    If we did, I would suggest it be limited to Saints, Prophets, Angels and Demons....not God.

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  • Dataweaver
    replied
    I’d go further and say that there’s no way to include all myths without some contradictions that can’t be resolved through compromises — with the caveat that it isn’t strictly necessary that the setting(s) be rigorously consistent. Some of us don’t mind if there’s the occasional clash between two mythologies, as long as we can tell entertaining stories that involve both.

    Indeed, you often can’t even get a fully consistent picture within one mythology; and I’m more interested in that than I am in having a fully consistent multi-mythology framework. Let each mythology be true to itself for the most part; and if the specifics of mythology A don’t mesh well with the specifics of mythology B when you look closely at both, so be it.

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  • ChewyGranola
    replied
    Hey hey I'm not intending to criticize anyone who wants these kinds of discussions. I have enjoyed reading the thread. I'm not knowledgable one way or another to have an opinion. That's why I posted what I did. Just a friendly reminder that the goal is to have a rip roaring good time, right? So by all means, discuss away. I just don't want anyone to lose sight of the fact that fun is the objective.
    From what I can tell, there is no way to include all myths without some compromises from everyone. It's messy and complicated, but that's ok. I find that I can wrap my head around the metaphysics better when I think if the world without trying to put the puzzle together. I hope that makes sense.

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  • Darksider
    replied
    I believe you would be misusing the term Academic Circles. That being said, yes we would prefer that everyone gets to have fun.

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  • TwitchTheRat
    replied
    Originally posted by ChewyGranola View Post
    Anyone read the Iron Druid series? It's a great example of an all myths setting. The main character is a Druid, plus he has interactions with vampires, werewolves, the Irish gods, Nordic gods, Mary, Angels, Demons, Bacchus' servants, witches that serve the Zorya, Coyote, Etcetera. no one worries about they why, they just are.
    The Iron Druid books are a ton of fun to read, and there are some portrayals of the gods that I absolutely love!
    Originally posted by ChewyGranola View Post
    I personally feel like that would be a great way to run Scion. Leave the discussions for academic circles and concentrate on big exciting mythic adventures with anyone or anything from any mythology ever showing up when appropriate. Keep it fun and simple.
    I think there are some really great academic circles right here on these forums, and we want them to have lots of fun also, right?

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