View Full Version : By Haelyn & Haelyn

12-28-2001, 06:24 AM
Is it just me, or do temples seem to play second fiddle to the regents in most games?

It always seems that the landed regent commands the temple to perform action, and dictates to them how things ought ot be. It is my considered opinion, that this tradition should be rethought.

Any regent worthy of his crown and padded cushion ought to fear his temple! The church should have real authority, and it has been my experience that players seldom take this approach.

Haelyn's temples are especially powerful in poitics, and the simple act of angering the clergy could result in excommunication - a powerful and disasterous outcome for any regent.

Regents can certainyl bandy around the temples, but they chould not be permitted to simply make demands upon the faith - especially the Haelyn temples in Anuire, Erik in the north, and so on.

Watch the movie "Elisabeth" with Cate Blanchet (or whatever her name is...) She challenges the predominant catholic church throughout, but does not place demands upon them. Indeed, even when her greatest detractors had to be 'removed" from negotaitons, it was her spymaster who did the work, without her knowledge!

The point, Temples have the power, the people, and the God on their side. The regent has the crown, the birthright, and the blessing of the church. He had best keep faith if he wants to keep his crown.

Arch-Sorcerer Gargamel
12-28-2001, 03:33 PM
Historically, rulers have exerted as much influence over the church as the church has over the rulers. For the first few centuries of the church, local rulership usually appointed bishops and abbots to their respective positions. The church hierarchy was filled with aristocracy for the longest time, often direct relatives to the rulers. Not even the Pope was immune to this practice, particularly the popes appointed by whoever happened to be the Holy Roman Emporer at the time after about the 10th century.

The church should wield influence over regents, often controlling them in some manner. But, a good regent will be able to shrug off this control and reverse it. Always up for a good intrigue.

12-29-2001, 05:29 AM
The lack of temple authority was one of the reasons for the reworking of the temple structure in my campaign.

Riegan Swordwraith
01-01-2002, 06:14 AM
But unless the landed regent is an anti-thesis of the religion itself,the temple should not interfere with politics.The only time the church should get involved in "wordly" affairs is when their is a direct threat to the church and the religion.Unfortunately in a lot of circumstances the church gets involved in things that it should seperate itself from.That is the influence of man.If you are a Regent and you make fair requests of the church,especially when it is something the church is supposed to be doing anyways,then as the landed regent you need to flex YOUR power.

Lord Eldred
01-01-2002, 06:43 PM
In my campaign, things seem to revolve around the church. While the church does not have direct control, it does have a member on Council. And since my campaign has rule by Council, the one vote and influence has a great effect on what is done and not done.

01-02-2002, 12:37 AM
In the campaign I run, I just try to keep priests as authoritative as they deserve. The Western Imperial Temple, for example, easily ranks among the most powerful and influential Anuirean regents in my campaign. On the other hand, the Church of Storm's Height lacks the political clout to dictate policy.

There's also the matter of what regent is involved. I had a guy playing the Duke of Tuornen who fell into a really bad position. He was highly vulnerable. He made matters worse by antagonizing the Archprelate of the WIT. It got so bad he was excommunicated and lost his domain not too long after. The church's influence can vary depending on the strength of a given monarch.

01-02-2002, 01:39 AM
A couple of negative agitates ought to keep the regent busy. With the preists free agitate every turn a regent will at least have to spend the resources to counter the attack on his rule. That should be enough to at least get the regent's attention.

Abbess Allessandra
01-03-2002, 04:26 PM
Orginally posted by Lord Eldred

In my campaign, things seem to revolve around the church. While the church does not have direct control, it does have a member on Council. And since my campaign has rule by Council, the one vote and influence has a great effect on what is done and not done.

...and since the provinces themselves are united under Haelyn it poses quite a bit of opportunity for enemies of Haelyn's to strike at us. My character is also a target for the other sects and religions since she is well known. The other side to that is she is kind of numb to that fact. She still thinks she is just a simple priest doing Haelyn's. The reality of her post is just starting to take effect on her. She is learning that politics always accompany religion. Does anyone disagree, agree, difference?

Riegan Swordwraith
01-03-2002, 07:14 PM
I am about to make myself very unpopular.....But as long as mortal man runs it,organized religion is the bane of any society,for good and bad.It is in my opinion that the church,no matter what church it is,should not interfere with wordly affairs except where it directly involves the deities tenents.But unfortunately the churches ran by man always seems to put their own ambitions before their deities'.

I would find it very uncomfortable to live next door to a nation run by people full of self-delusion who mixes what they want for that of a God.I do not try to harm the church,and I do not ask undue requests from it in my domain.But when I ask for something I do expect it to fulfill its obligations,just as I would a guild,or a sourceholder.

01-03-2002, 11:53 PM
Riegan: I admire you for your boldness and commend you for standing up for your opinion regardless of popularity. I myself am a man of God first and foremost and my opinions disagree with yours. Yet, I respect your conviction and right to your own opinion.

Abbess Allessandra
01-04-2002, 02:46 AM
Well said, I do not consider you an enemy but remember this church is run by a woman not a man. So far she has not fallen to her own wants as a church leader and taken advantage of anyone. Maybe she will change as she becomes wiser.
I personally would rather have the country we play in as a neighbor than the Spider or Gorgon, wouldn't you?

Riegan Swordwraith
01-04-2002, 04:49 AM
Abess Allesandra,when I said"man" or "men" I was refering to mankind in whole.

But to both you and Lawgiver,I do not beleive that all Priest-Regents are power-hungry egocentrics.I always save my distrust or disdain to those who deserve it.If I gave you the impression that I have disdain for men of the cloth,please forgive me.It is just I heard you speak as if being a holy man,or woman as the case may be,that makes you above mortal law.And in a way that is true,however only in times where it indeed does violate the tenants of your faith.In my eyes,being Holy does not make one inviolate.

Once again I shall appologise for preaching.....And thank you for your words of kindness.

Abbess Allessandra
01-04-2002, 01:51 PM
That seems to be the obstacle with type written words. Sometimes the tone is very hard to comprehend. I accept your apologies and find your thoughts on the concept interesting. Have you ever played a character of religion?

Abbess Allessandra
01-04-2002, 01:56 PM
[quote]Orginally posted by Riegan Swordwraith
It is just I heard you speak as if being a holy man,or woman as the case may be,that makes you above mortal law.And in a way that is true,however only in times where it indeed does violate the tenants of your faith.In my eyes,being Holy does not make one inviolate.[quote]

Riegan, that is one of the biggest issues my character faces on a daily basis. Sometimes she has to turn her head to things that happen knowing she cannot change them or at least tried to. Then she has to wrestle with the idea of getting her deity totally cheesed at her. At other times she fights so hard against the others that her head spins trying to make them see they are not doing what is right. Of course right here means by the deity's law not her own. She is not above mortal law and as I learned when we are not in a country where Haelyn is the main religion of study there are problems.

Riegan Swordwraith
01-04-2002, 04:46 PM
I have played clerics and paladins,but only two have made it to a respectable level.One was a priest of Pelor in the Greyhawk setting.The other was also in Greyhawk but he was not a cleric.He was a ranger who became one of Ehlonna's Champions.(Ehlonna is the Goddess of Unicorn's,animals,and the forrests).At first he just had a tatoo and a unicorn horn that he used.Then he had two tatoos and the horn was basically absorbed into him,which meant he had those powers innately.In his latest incarnation he has all the powers of a unicorn,and is infact a "were-unicorn".However he can only do it once,and that is when he is summoned by some mack-arse female Pally whose mission is most dire.Then he totally become the unicorn and become an NPC.No he isn't evn just a unicorn,he will be a heavy warhorse of unicorns.Both of these characters I played till 9th level when the campaigns petered out.

But yes I have played men of the cloth and understand the difficulties of doing so.

Abbess Allessandra
01-05-2002, 01:28 AM
How cool was that? Wow! We have had some pretty amazing things happen in our campaigns as well. Did you hate to part with that character?

Elton Robb
01-05-2002, 05:23 AM
I would play a priest regent . . . of Rournil.

Respectfully Yours,
Elton Robb

Riegan Swordwraith
01-05-2002, 07:20 AM
Well In haven't had to give up the character yet,as he is till human.But the campaign just went under cause a couple of guys moved off or quit playing.I really cannot complain to my character's fate(his name was Connall MacCuhaill),as it was his choice(sort of).He had sacrificed his life to destroy an ancient Sueloise artifact that basically causes intense fires to burn across the Flanaess.It was powerful enough to destroy Oerth if left unmolested.Any way he died destroying the thing.One of the old gods was helping us.He asked if I would want to stay with my deity or return to life.I decided that there was much work yet to be done and decided to live.This is the my price.(I didn't know at the time what was going to happen.....forgot to ask that part!!!:))

Lord Eldred
01-06-2002, 03:43 PM
It is natural for organized religion to have problems given that humankind has a major flaw, the inability to be perfect. Thus all organized religion will be imperfect. Even in the game world, the Abbess Allessandra deals with her imperfection and won't do everything right. The greatest danger is when the leaders believe they are perfect or they become greedy or they believe everyone else must believe what they believe!

Abbess Allessandra
01-07-2002, 03:30 PM
I think that greed is the farthest thing from Allessandra's mind. Don't you agree?

Lord Eldred
01-08-2002, 01:58 AM
I would agree. It is more like confusion, self doubt... Should I go on?

Abbess Allessandra
01-08-2002, 03:02 AM
No you don't need to go on. She feels how is it possible that this priest has been chosen to do these things that have been set forth? The reality of it all has never settled with her. Even when soldiers ask for blessings she is still a bit surprised. We have been at this now in game time 4 years with the domain actions since we started so she is only about 23. Very young and vulnerable still. So yes self doubt works.

Lord Eldred
01-08-2002, 03:10 AM
A little self doubt may be necessary to hold back greed!

Abbess Allessandra
01-08-2002, 03:14 AM
I think that I am doing ok. I have a lot to do and too many adventures keeping me from doing it.

01-09-2002, 10:04 PM
Church should have some degree of authority over the landed and non-landed regents, but the other way arround is also true. You can expect a priest of the WIT, MOC, LPA, IHH, NIT, OIT, etc... to have a lot of influence over their faithfuls and the other regents, but you can't expect the landed not to have any influence over them either. Small churches though are likely to have less influence, or churches with little influence in a country; like I wouldn't expect a lot of influence from the LPA over the Baron of Ghoere... but I would expect him to have lots and lots of influence over the Patriarch of Elinie and the Count(?) of Coeranys.

Abbess Allessandra
01-10-2002, 01:43 AM
I see your point and support it. I don't have a lot of trouble from the other regents in the provinces since they join the alliance with the understanding that we allow the other religions but Haelyn is who guides us. I have seen how my influence goes nowhere in a land that is not allied with us.

Riegan Swordwraith
01-11-2002, 05:17 AM
I agree with you fully Temujin.Especially when it comes to a lawful church such as Haelyn's.It also depends on the Priest Reegent and the other landed and non-landed Regents.A strong Priest and a weak say Baron means the church will have a strong influence.A weak bishop and a starong Duke the church will have less influence.A strong cardinal and a strong Prince it becomes a test of wills and commitments.

Master Dao Rin
01-25-2002, 05:28 AM
I definitely make sure my players treat their temple rulers with respect, and encourage them to work out their regent anality on the guilds ... :)

Temples usually vehemently oppose 'taxing' of its holdings, and players learn to work with them rather than against them IMC. After all, how did the humans reach their heights without the power of the priesthood?

Lord Eldred
02-18-2002, 07:37 PM
Surely not by the battle spells they can cast since many of the wizard camp argue they should not be allowed to cast them.

Green Knight
02-20-2002, 08:40 AM
Some temples involve themselves more in worldly matters than others. The temples of Haelyn are a prime example of this. How could they not be, when their god is all about nobility, rulership and justice? It also depends on the personality of the temple regents - some are more interested in matters of the flesh than in matters of the soul.

In my Ruins of Empire campaign, OIT is possibly more powerful than the Lord of Diemed. There is little he can do without interference form the church. In fact, he seems to be spending more time checking the church's power than he does pursuing the Medoere affair.

Lord Eldred
02-22-2002, 11:04 PM
Given the title of the realm in which I rule, you can probably guess how I feel about our temple leadership :)

Abbess Allessandra
02-25-2002, 01:11 PM
Ok I will write that one down and take it as a compliment!

Lord Eldred
02-26-2002, 12:19 AM
I was talking about the Bishop my lady! You seem to be awfully full of yourself to think I was speaking of you! ;)

Abbess Allessandra
02-27-2002, 02:32 AM
And just where is he? I suppose he is going to take lightly to you sending servants to mass and not bothering to show up yourself? (but of course since you play the Bishop you can make him do whatever you want to can't you?)

Abbess Allessandra
02-27-2002, 02:33 AM
He and his wife have probably been growing hybrid herbs in the Khinasi lands. hahaha

Lord Eldred
03-01-2002, 12:55 AM
I have been praying with the Bishop every Sunday my lady!

Abbess Allessandra
03-01-2002, 01:43 AM
Uh huh sure you have. Whatever you say Lord Eldred.

Lord Eldred
03-01-2002, 02:04 AM
Are you implying that I lie? I am hurt!

03-04-2002, 10:06 PM
I think in Haelyn's case in Anuire, the temples vary like any religion. You have Avan and Boeruine controlling the temples more or less becase they are very forceful personalities, great warriors, and powerful nobles, which epitomize the religion. Hence they are the ones in charge.

One reason is the fact that the Empire of Anuire was ruled by the descendants of Roele, who was the brother of their god, which gives sort of a "Divine Right of Kings" aspect. The Emperor was usually a powerful figure, like King Henry VII of England, who dominated the church instead of being dominated by it. In the case of Anuire it makes sense.

The Rjurik though on the other hand have no control of the Druids, and in fact the regents can do little to influence them. In fact the Druids (Oaken Grove or Emerald Spire) wouldn't have a had time removing a faithless regent. A regent would lose all his popular support and likely get a score of challenges from one of his jarls. This is a case of the church having more power than the state. Erik has about 95% of all worship in those lands. Oh, a regent could try and go with another religion, but likely wouldn't last from internal and external challenges. Individual deeds are important in these lands.

The relationships are somewhat cultural in my opinion.

Abbess Allessandra
03-06-2002, 02:08 AM
No, I am just saying you are way too much into medicinal herbs. Maybe you forget alot.

On the other note, I am still learning about the other religions as we run into them and so far only one has been friendly towards Haelynism.

Arch-Sorcerer Gargamel
03-06-2002, 10:15 PM
Who needs priests, anyways, I'll just talk to Ruornil himself.

Lord Eldred
03-10-2002, 01:38 PM
What makes you think Rournil would give you the time of day Gargamel? You think awfully high of your self don't you :P

03-11-2002, 03:23 AM
Perhaps he has been spending some time in the baths with our bishop, El?

04-18-2002, 07:52 PM
Who plays second fiddle to whom tends to depend on the realm size and the temple size. A great deal also tends to depend on how agressively the temples employ their power.

The larger temples do have more actual power than many Birthright countries. In the campaign I play in the PCs running Endier and Tuornen take great care to keep the huge mega-temples in their borders (WIT the MOC and the Celestial Jewel) happy so they they don't cause trouble in their domains.

As Supreme Heirarch of the NIT, Boeruine, Dhosone and the Siren consult me on matters of faith and magic and many temporal matters dealing with their provinces in which the NIT is the dominant faith. The NIT currently stretches from northern Boeruine and Talinie, through the Five Peaks, Dhosone and the Siren's Realm. I also have plans to expand into the Giant Downs.

The NIT has built fortificactions on behalf of local rulers. We provide temple armies to help defend their borders against incursions and provide them with money, advisors and experts to that they can improve their provinces. We sing the ruler's praises to their people (agitate) cast realm spells for them and bless the land so that they can gain additional funds. The NIT has been a very good friend to them and all of them know that we could be an even more unpleasant foe if we have a reason to be. (See the Excominucate realm spell for the ultimate in religious sanction on the ruler.)