Anuire » Northern Marches » Haelyn's Bastion of Truth


Haelyn's Bastion of Truth
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Supreme Hierarch, James Ardannt


Capital

Government












Alignment: Lawful Good.
Status: Haelyn's Bastion of Truth is a small temple that has been pushed back by the Northern Reformed Temple of Sarimie. The southern towns have been lost. The current ruler has stemmed the tide, but the challenges remain great. The Bastion's survival is at stake.

[top]Regent

The Supreme Hierarch, James Ardannt has stemmed the tide of retreat and is holding his own against his rivals. He seeks to restore the balance of Fitzalan's teachings.

[top]Teaching and Doctrine

Haelyn's Bastion of Truth is an offshoot of the Northern Imperial Temple and draws its theology and organization from that temple. Owing to the distances involved and challenges in Dhoesone, Haelyn's Bastion of Truth is organizationally independent.

Haelyn's Bastion of Truth is devoted primarily to Haelyn as the patron of Anuire. Haelyn is revered throughout Anuire as a paragon of kingship, courage, chivalry, command of armies, and stern yet merciful justice. The temple teaches that its followers must emulate Haelyn as a defender of the innocent and laborer for the good of the whole community.

Like most temples of Haelyn, Haelyn's Bastion of Truth holds that a society can thrive only by adhering to a strict rule of law. However, it was Fitzalan's principle message that the law is empty without the temperance of mercy. As such, the Bastion has always taught mercy has essential to an understanding of justice. Many priests of Haelyn's Bastion of Truth are Neutral Good. While they embrace the nobility and the law, they require that true justice is based on reflection of what is right, not a rigid devotion to the letter of the law. Mercy, Fitzalan believed, was a deliberate act.

Likewise, the northern tradition teaches that laws exists to regulate a person's temptations to place his own needs before those of society as a whole. In this they are in common with many other sects of Haelyn. But Haelyn's Bastion of Truth has elaborated on this principle through Fitzalan's demanding work ethic. Fitzalan saw work as a method of establishing the self discipline to lead a moral life. The benefits of labor nearly always extend beyond one's own advantage and help the broader society. Fitzalan saw the errors of the Orthodox Imperial Temple, their rigid interpretations of doctrine, their emphasis on rituals, and their attachment to an unchanging function for each individual as a spiritual laziness. Justice is based on reflection of what is right, after all, and this requires the labor of the mind and heart to achieve a right end. Blind obedience to a code created by other men is a stagnation of the law and produces errors.

In Haelyn's Bastion of Truth, the teachings of Fitzalan's spiritual message is considered more important than his teachings on work. Bhàtair Armara, an early father of the Northern Imperial Temple who was instrumental in bringing the doctrines of Fitzalan to Dhoesone, did not teach Fitzalan's work on personal conduct as a separate doctrine but only as a means to fulfilling his spiritual message.

More conventional teaching in temples of Haelyn, that it is the responsibility of the ruler to guide the endeavors of his people, is also the more common doctrine in Haelyn's Bastion of Truth as well. Fitzalan himself was of the knightly class and addressed himself to them as much as to the priesthood in his work. Like Haelyn, Fitzalan saw the nobles as the natural rulers of the people, and the priests as the teachers of both noble and common. The king, count, lord, and knight should take Haelyn as their model, and govern with the spirit, dedication, labor, and sacrifice of the paragon of kings.

Nobles of Fitzalan's age, especially in the core of the old Empire, were proud and flaunted their wealth and power in a way that Fitzalan believed interfered with the right execution of their duties to govern well. Instead, Fitzalan called for nobles to embrace humility, grace, and stewardship and the first principles of their rule.

Fitzalan understood that a certain pride was beneficial, for it held the noble to the core principles that he was proud of. Fitzalan reminded his followers that properly understood, pride was courage attached to right principles. Displays which stem from pride aided the ruler in holding the people in awe by their majesty and dignity. Too much pride was a problem for Fitzalan and he wanted to bind the best senses of pride to the best achievements of a dynasty and of the active and effortfull practice of Haelyn's law. Humility was the principle called to that purpose for not only does humility keep pride in its proper bounds, but tends to reinforce the social order without the need for ancient laws that enforce an unchanging function for each individual despite merit, justice, or effort.

Fitzalan had seen since Deismaar that occasionally minor houses had, through effort and wisdom, elevated their bloodlines, across the generations while great houses had sometimes squandered the great bloodlines won by champions at the great battle and were no longer fit for the high station they held. Permanent succession by inheritance of an unchanging social system did not seem to Fiztalan like Haelyn's teaching on social order. Instead, Fitzalan allowed that families and individuals might rise and fall according to their merit. A great individual in an otherwise mediocre house might hold high office, while a house that proved its merit across the generations had proved its worthiness for greater title and distinction.

Stewardship has always been important to temples of Haelyn, but for Fitzalan, the principle proved to be a major springboard for his teaching, using work as a source of discipline to higher enlightenment and emphasizing the community obligations of everyone.

Fitzalan had railed against the rituals of the Imperial Temple because the people did not understand them. They were extravagant and complex, Fitzalan went so far as to say, "convoluted". So he stripped the temples of those rituals were didn't clearly edify he people and instruct them. Soon after, Janna Many-Tongued began to reintroduce rituals based on her didactic model of flowers and gardening. Janna believed that rituals were indeed useless if they did not reinforce the teachings of the temple, and so made it very clear what each of the rituals she created is intended to teach.

Though slightly less important in Haelyn's Bastion of Truth than in the Northern Imperial Temple, every child recruited as a new temple disciple quickly learns the scents associated with the Five Perfumed Virtues: honesty (gardenia), prudence (sage), thrift (heather), cleanliness (violet), and work (rose). Youthful acolytes memorize the hundred and eight varieties of flowers in the Yearlong Garden and their associated legends and symbolism.

Once inducted into the priesthood, a novitiate journeys to an upland monastery, the Honeysuckle Abbey and learns to concoct the Heavenly Aromas used in the Seven Annual Ceremonies, Leafturn, Harvest Moon, Snowfall Contemplation, and Dormancy) and the Five Rites of Life (Birth, Induction, Breaking of the Voice, Marital Union, and Sweet Passage).

[top]History

Founded shortly after the cataclysm at Mount Deismaar, the Imperial Temple of Haelyn once existed as a unified religious order. However the temple splintered in the wake of the Anuirean Empire's fall, as dissenting priests debated how best to serve the Lawmaker. While there is still a sense that there is one Imperial Temple of Haelyn, there is clearly no central leadership in the temple, but rather several distinct leaders and their movements and followers. Haelyn's Bastion of Truth is an offshoot of The Northern Imperial Temple which are the names for the temples run by the successors of Fitzalan the Blessed, which still adheres to Fitzalan's fatalistic ethic of work and humility combined with Janna Many-Tongued gospel of gardening and floral spiritualism. Followers of Fitzalan or Janna might be found anywhere, but the successors of Fitzalan have political and religious power only in Dhoesone, Talinie, and Boeruine, while they might influence followers anywhere.

Talinie, across the Tael Firth, after the fall of the Anuirean Empire, fell into a period of civil war known as the "Wasted Centuries." In the 290's MR a theologian emerged to unify the temples of Talinie calling for reform of the Imperial Temple. His country was wracked by a civil war, and after the War of the Candles, in which lawpriests and warpriests of Haelyn fought a war that included a dispute over how many candles were properly used in various ceremonies, Fitzalan decried the emphasis on ceremonies and the disregard of the central doctrines of the faith. For three decades, Fitzalan developed, revised, and taught his method, writing books, teaching, and preaching reformation.He preached a spiritual message of humility, grace, and stewardship combined with an guide to personal conduct that emphasized work and fatalistic submission to the world as it is.

Fitzalan had emerged from the knightly class and his message was an evolution from Haelyn's teachings of chivalry and service, so had a natural appeal to the nobility. His guide to living by the law of Haelyn also appealed to the lawpriests as well, and a single unified church began to emerge on the ashes of the two sects which had fought the War of the Candles. Only the laboring people still clung to the Orthodox Imperial Temple and its formalized rituals which Fitzalan criticized as empty forms which had lost their meaning. Fitzalan's doctrines of service did not appeal to the laboring classes in the same way that the Orthodox rituals did.

Fitzalan reorganized the church in Talinie and formed a rival organization to the Imperial Temple that rejected the teachings coming from the schools in Aerele and the interpretations of the leaders at the Avelerine Cathedral. Eventually, the leadership in Aerele felt compelled to act. In 315 MR, the Imperial Temple began to officially debate and criticize Fitzalan's positions. Fitzalan, whose homeland had been ravaged by religious wars, was strident in his demands that the message of the temple was vastly more important than the ceremonies. He argued that the complexity of the ceremonial prevented the people from understanding Haelyn's message and left the people in darkness. The leadership in Aerele was proud of the beautiful rituals employed and regarded their sophistication as a testament to the civilization, good order, and right example that Anuire enjoyed as a result of Haelyn's teaching. It was inconceivable that these very signs of goodness should be a source of ill.

Some leaders, such as Blaede Vathormane of the Imperial Temple's largest knightly order, the Holy Order of Haelyn's Aegis, urged conciliation and reconcilliation between the two factions. Fitzalan refused to compromise his interpretation of Haelyn's message, and Aerele refused to accept Fitzalan's ideas. The leadership in Aerele took a more and more orthodox tone refusing to acknowledge problems in the church and regarding Fitzalan's new temple as a rebellion, and using Haelyn's teaching on rebellion as their inspiration. In 327 MR, Fitzalan was arrested by the Inquisition of Righteousness and Justice in Aerele. Blaede objected to this move calling it, "the act that will severe the Imperial Temple forever."

The common people cared less for doctrine than the priests or nobles, and were more concerned with mysticism and a bit of comfort in their hard lives. The new northern branch of the Imperial Temple received an important boost during Talinie's early history from the mystic preacher Janna Many-Tongued. When smelling roses, she would sometimes fall into transports of ecstasy and cry out heavenly visions. Attendants carefully transcribed her episodes and circulated them as the Aromatic Scriptures. Janna's ecstatic teachings interpreted Fitzalan's spiritual message using flowers as metaphors to explain different parts of service to Haelyn, and gardening as a direct example of how work produces rewards of its own. Janna spent her long life preaching a gospel of gardening, and of raising beautiful and sweet scented flowers as a tribute to Haelyn. An encounter with the father of the young Baron Edrand I, Jarod Dannis, resulted in a romantic attachment that had the result of making Newelton into a garden city and establishing flowers as the Northern Imperial Temple's primary symbols. This mystical, softer approach to Fitzalan won over the people and produced genuine unity in the new realm.

One of the followers of the new Northern Imperial Temple, and a lieutenant of Janna Many-Tonged, Bhàtair Armara brought the teachings of Janna and Fitzalan to Dhoesone. In the northern barony Bhàtair found many who embraced this interpretation of Fitzalan and its respect and devotion to nature as an opportunity to serve Haelyn as a steward of the land. Since many Anuireans in Dhoesone had come to respect if not necessarily adopt the druidic teachings of Erik, this reformed Temple of Haelyn was widely embraced. Bhàtair stayed for six years in Dhoesone, making Nolien, on the coast, his base to evangelize the country. A new cathedral was built in Nolien on the architectural ideas that followed from the new teaching, surrounding the church with gardens in which to meditate on the law, society, and justice.

Even today, the Bastion is based in Nolien, though the church has lost its influence among the people of the city, who reject Fitzalan's call to serve Haelyn through selfless labor and stewardship of the land. Instead the cathedral stands as a beacon of service in a town devoted to commerce, selfish acquisition of wealth, and disregard for the costs to nature of ruthless extraction of wealth from the land. So it is in more and more of Dhoesone. The teachings of Fitzalan saw work as a method of establishing self discipline necessary to a moral life. As a farmer must tend his crops, preparing the ground, sowing the seeds, and protecting the plants from weeds and blight, so must a person tend his moral nature with equal care. This created a people with a profound and enduring work ethic. As elites do, the nobles and merchants valued this work ethic sometimes more for its ability to milk still more wealth from their laborers than as a spiritual virtue. This corruption was always a struggle in the Bastion as Fitzalan's spiritual message is often overlooked in favor of more attention to his teachings on hard work and personal conduct.

This vulnerability was exploited as temples of Sarimie came into the country. Some two decades ago a most ruthless guilder, Mheallie Bireon brought her Northlands Exchange into Dhoesone, and on its back followed Larra Nielems' Northern Reformed Church of Sarimie. The towns especially embraced this doctrine of wealth and fortune unfettered by service and stewardship. Haelyn's Bastion of Truth lost ground among the Anuireans in Dhoesone just as the Oaken Grove lost ground among the Rjurik. Recently these temples have reformed themselves and the advance of the temples of Sarimie has been halted. Günther Brandt took over the Oaken Grove as a Brecht who knew the doctrines of Sarimie from the inside and could refute them with authority. James Ardannt came to lead the Bastion with a commitment to restoring the importance and even emphasizing Fitzalan's spiritual message.

Today the Bastion has lost its influence in the southern towns, and retains the more rural provinces of the north east. The Oaken Grove has always been dominant along the Northbyrn River. The Bastion of Truth has always gotten along reasonably well with the Oaken Grove, primarily attending to their own cultural group, but under James Ardannt and Günther Brandt, both temples have increased cooperation and embraced the doctrine of Holn's Companionship. Even so, to recapture the southern towns, some crisis will have to strike the people to prove the folly of their adherence to the doctrine of Sarimie. Whether this is an open guild war, or a sidhe war on the guilds, James does not relish its approach, since the devastation would be terrible.

[top]Major Centers of Worship

Nolien is the original center of the Bastion in Dhoesone, and the home of its oldest and most beautiful gardens.
Sonnelind is the capital of the Barony of Dhoesone and has been the administrative center of the Bastion as well as the location of the law school.
Hidaele is the location of Honeysuckle Abbey.
Sidhuire is where the Violet Temple is located. the Bastion breeds warhorses here.

[top]Important NPCs

James Ardannt, Supreme Hierarch
Richard Luddham, Chancellor
Illiam Harbanus Presbyter of Nolien
Shaemus Guthrie Abbot of Honeysuckle Abbey
Voirrey Dhariel Captain of Cavalry
Simon of Haelyn, roving Inquisitor in Dhoesone.

[top]Plots and rumors

[top]Domain Holding Table


Domain Table: Haelyn's Bastion of Truth
ProvinceLawTempleGuildSource
Dharilein, Dhoesone (1/4)FD (1)JA (1)AD (1)CD (4)
AD (0)
Giant's Fastness, Dhoesone (1/5)GTh (1)JA (1)Gth (1)DD(5)
FD (0)
Hidaele, Dhoesone (2/3)FD (1)JA (1)BA (1)CD (3)
BA (0)
Nolien, Dhoesone (3/2)FD (2)LN (3)SH (3)CD (2)
SH (0)JA(0)
Ruidewash, Dhoesone (2/5)FD (1)JA (1)AD (2)DD (5)
AD (0)LN (1)
Sidhuire, Dhoesone (2/5)FD (1)JA (2)AD (2)DD (5)
AD (0)LN (0)
Sonnelind, Dhoesone (4/3)FD (3)LN (3)MB (2)DD (3)
MB (1)JA (1)AD (2)
Abbreviations: FD=Fhiele Dhoesone (Dhoesone); GTh=Gaelin Thuried (Upper Anuire Traders); AD=Adaere Doneim (Northern Imports and Exports); SH=Storm Holtson (Stjordvik Traders); BA=Bannier Andien (Andien and Sons; MB=Mheallie Bireon (Northlands Exchange); LN=Larra Nielems (Northern Reformed Church of Sarimie); JA=James Ardannt (Haelyn's Bastion of Truth); GB=Günther Brandt (Oaken Grove of Erik); CD=Clumine Dhoesone; DD=Daeric Dhoesone.

  • Law: The baroness holds half the kingdon's law, the guilders hold the rest.
  • Temples: The Oaken Grove of Aeric, Haelyn's Bastion of Truth, and the Northern Reformed Church of Sarimie all compete for the devotion of the people.
  • Guilds: The realm is beset by conflicts between the guilds, although they join forces to oppose the baroness.
  • Source: Clumine and Daeric are cousins and rivals.



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