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 Post subject: Kion Religion
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2018 2:51 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 12:50 am
Posts: 485
Location: Tampa, Florida (temp.)
A couple PCI products released in 2018 (ARCANIS 5E CAMPAIGN GUIDE but especially in CHILDREN OF THE SKY: THE KIO SOURCEBOOK) explain that most Kio eschew worship of the Gods of Men in favor of reverence of the Creator with the explanation that they see the Creator as being supreme above the Gods.

From a theological perspective it makes sense, and if Arcanis were like religions on the real Earth, that view seems reasonable. In a world of divine magic, however, where worship of the Gods of Men can grant magic spells whereas the Creator cannot, it does not seem very pragmatic. Learning divine cants grants the ability to heal wounds and cure diseases and well as other useful abilities, but the healing alone is the pragmatic focus here because sorcery cannot do that. By strongly discouraging Kio from worshipping the Gods (to the point of making them outcasts), kion culture is denying itself the ability to provide healing to its own people, or from an alternate viewpoint, making itself reliant upon other races for those abilities. Either view seems self-defeating. This self-defeatist perspective seems especially strange because CHILDREN OF THE SKY presents the High Kio (purebloods) as being obsessed with long lives.

Thus, while I would understand a religion that emphasizes the Creator over the Gods and teaches that the Gods are lesser and should not be as valued as the Creator, it is difficult for me to understand why, in a world with divine healing magic, an entire culture would refuse to let their members learn the healing gifts of the Gods on the theological grounds as they are presented.

David Thomas Chappell
Sestius Ovidius val'Mehan Comma and Khamat - psion patrician diplomatic legate and his Myrantian tutor
Quintus Ovidius val'Mehan - patrician military tribune
Amadi val'Abebi - Monk of Althares
Talathos - choleric Kelekene dabbler

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 Post subject: Re: Kion Religion
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2018 1:19 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:47 am
Posts: 2486
Location: Central Alberta
Cody's thoughts.

First, I should point out that just because something is irrational it doesn't mean people will not do it anyway. I know a 6 foot python is not going to come out from under my bed in Edmonton, but as an ophidiophobe I still look because I have an irrational fear.

Second, you forget that Arcanis is NOT Forgotten Realms.
Clerics don't pray for spells each day per Arcanis cosmology (especially per ARG), but cast chants. These are pre-written spells given BY the Gods that anyone can cast of they have faith in the Gods. Think of this like if aliens come down from the stars and give us extremely precise (and very eccentric) rules on how to harness dark energy far above our knowledge. Anyone who follows these instructions will gain great energy, but only if you follow these instructions precisely.

For the Kio, their religion tells them that the Gods are unworthy of worship, and Divine magic requires the component of faith to cast and if you instill culturally that the Gods aren't worthy, you can't cast spells even if you want. You have culturally made it so you can't follow the alien's instructions, and thereby cannot access that great power.

Now, some people fall to the faith in these lesser Gods, and those can (and have) embraced them despite the carrots and sticks which prevent it in their society. These people are shunned for breaking the mores of the society and gain a flaw for their trouble.

Now, the True Bloods have a distinct interest in maintaining that the kio do not worship gods and direct such energy in generating and honouring THEM. If the kio embraced the Pantheon, then the True Kio lose influence (if they believe that power is finite and anyone who gains power lessens their own). As such, they would continue to come down from their mountain and reinforce their authority as near gods in their own right (not exactly, but functionally).

Also remember, just because they can't cast cants, doesn't mean they can't magically heal. There are non-divine ways of doing this such as alchemy, and the kio embrace arcane magic. Leaving that aside, the kio seem to have a very strong aversion to "cheating" and "crunches" like magic in many ways. They want to temper themselves into the perfect creature, and if it doesn't come from within them they seem to shy away from it.

Cody Bergman
Legends of Arcanis Campaign Staff
Initial Author Contact/Adventure Vetting

Haakon Marcus val'Virdan, Divine Holy Judge of Nier
Ruma val'Vasik, Martial Crusader and Master of the Spear
Jorma Osterman, Arcane Coryani Battlemage

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 Post subject: Re: Kion Religion
PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:21 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 1:06 am
Posts: 2070
Location: Portland OR
I agree with a lot of Cody's points.

From what we have in Children of the Sky it appears that Kion culture is not based on the cultural tropes that emerged in the Axial Age (which can broadly be distilled down into the Golden Rule of treating others with the same empathy you yourself want to be treated with). They remain a (warrior) culture dedicated to excellence (which can broadly be distilled down into prove yourself superior to all others, and caveat emptor to everyone outside your family/clan). In this sense the Kio have more in common with the kiowa or the samurai then they do with feudal Europe or aloof "Tolkienian" pseudo elves.

Dante is right that a society is giving up a lot by ignoring the (especially Corpus) Tradition/s of divine spell casting. But if you you believe the gods of the Pantheon of Man are essentially bigger versions of the Sorcerer King, then you aren't going to be able to wield the Cants anyway. You don't have the necessary faith. Given that the True Kio recently showed up for the Coronation of King Geonay, it stands to reason that the Kio can see an alternative example of Higher Powers that most would follow. The True Kio seem to move at the "speed of plot" and may not really be statable in the ARP system (and might require Divine Ranks in D&D) like the high elorii and the valinor. Personally i believe the High Kio have access to a variety of powers and abilities (and technologies) beyond those enjoyed by playable characters. I assume the High Kio have something cooler than Mend Wounds (or Cure Wounds/Healing Word) on tap if they need it.

I also don't think that anything Cody or have written means that Kio have no recourse to divine magic. There are representatives of the Mother Church in the League. Some are missionaries. Some are Inquisitors. It says in numerous places that the Kio are willing to pay lip service to the PoM when its convenient to them. So if you have the means, I assume you hire someone to cast healing spells if you really need something. No PoM "clerics" around? Probably an Undir Shaman or an elorii Lifewarden could also help...

Eric Gorman

AKA Ambassador Tukufu, man of letters, tomb raider and Master Sword Sage
. . . and Sir Szymon val'Holryn, Order of the Phoenix
Formerly Sir Jaeger val'Holryn. Weilder of the Holy Avenger: Thonanos. Gave his soul to help free King Noen

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