Northern Imperial Temple
Anuire » Western Coast » Northern Imperial Temple
Alignment: Lawful Good.
Status: The Northern Imperial Temple of Haelyn is intertwined with the state of Talinie, so playing the regent of one is playing the regent of the other.
= Regent =
The Supreme Hierarch, Thuriene Donalls came to power as the bearer of the Rose Scepter with a renewed zeal to combat moral laxity and empty ritualism. Her mother, Thalia Armara united church and state into one organization.
The Northern Imperial Temple is devoted primarily to Haelyn as the patron of Anuire according to the Principles of Fitzalan. 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.
However, the Northern Imperial Temple has many in its ranks who are blind advocates of Fitzalan's teachings on work, who are inflexible in their own way no less than the old orthodox temple, and have failed to grasp the heart of Fitzalan's spiritual message. Fitzalan did not intend that his work ethic would become the principle focus of his teaching, but for many in the northern temple, it has. Fitzalan's elevation of mercy and benevolence, however, bears the seeds of this blind inflexibility. Such mercy is most good in the individual and specific cases, but when it becomes a universalizing virtue, in effect a rule to be interpreted before other rules, it can become a source of intolerance and inflexibility. When benevolence and mercy become the first principles, when they become universal principles, and when they are energized by a powerful moral sensibility, the result can often be an uncompromising fanaticism. Fitzalan himself is sometimes called a zealot, and it is unclear how much responsibility he has for some of the rigidity and even cruelty that exist in the Northern Imperial Temple as a result.
Within the church there is a counter strain of thinking, which is perhaps best summed up in the words of Bhàtair Armara:
"Those who are convinced both of the primacy of benevolence among moral obligations, and of the primacy of morality among all things are a danger to the people. For it is this combination which summons in the character a sense of infallibly. This is a requirement for men seeking good to visit enormous destruction to human happiness."
The Northern Imperial Temple contains within it several radical sects that take extreme positions on one aspect of Fitzalan's teachings. Among these are Dominionism, which argues for a radically theocratic state run exclusively according to the Book of Laws interpreted by a Fitzalanian point of view. This sect disdains nobles who are devoted only to Haelyn as a paragon of kingship and the source of chivalry.
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 the Northern Imperial Temple 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 famailies 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 which didn't clearly edify he people and instruct them. Soon after, Janna many-toungued 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 it is very clear today what ritual is intended to teach.
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 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).
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. The Northern Imperial Temple and its offshoot, Haelyn's Bastion of Truth are the names for the organization run by the successors of Fitzalan the Blessed, which still adheres to Fitzalan's fatalistic ethic of work and humility combined with Janna many-toungued 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 Talinie, Boeruine, and Dhoesone while they might influence followers anywhere.
Before the founding of Talinie, during the "Wasted Centuries", each individual province was supposed to be governed from the City of Anuire, where temporal and spiritual matters would be decided by Imperial Officials. But without the Empire, small contentious factions of priests and nobles banded together to fight every other faction in a war of all against all. Several priests created attractive and innovated approaches that won followings and secular champions. Continued violence over matters of politics and faith eventually saw the rise of two rival interpretations of Haelyn's message, one based on the lawpriests revering Haelyn first as the Lawmaker, and a second sect based on warpriests, understanding Haelyn primarily as the Lord of Noble War. This conflict is known as the War of the Candles because each sect preferred a different number of candles be lit on Haelyn's altar.
A great zealot, Fitzalan the Blessed, emerged in this conflicted environment to preach 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 and empty forms without meaning. Fitzalan's doctrines of service did not appeal to the laboring classes in the same way that the Orthodox rituals did.
As the nobles and priests began to adopt the teaching of Fitzalan, a unified sense of a people began to grow in what was to become Talinie. This sense of identity started in the temples with the idea of a Northern Imperial Temple, distinct from other rival movements and organizations. The nobles quarreled frequently and sometimes petty wars occurred, occasionally spiraling into great conflagrations across the provinces. The War of Greensward Succession was one such war, in which the various counts fought to place one of three candidates as count of Greensward. Jarod Dannis was one such warlord, and the Count of Ice Haven who emerged as a brilliant commander and talented statesmen. Jarod won a major battle in his province and compelled his rivals to accept his son as the lord of a new realm containing all of their provinces.
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 reconciliation 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 execution of Fitzalan shocked the people of Talinie, who regarded Fitzalan as a learned teacher and holy man, even if they didn't embrace his teachings. The arrest and execution did serious harm to the cause of the orthodox interpretation in Talinie. Throughout Anuire, three responses had developed to the schism. One was to embrace Fitzalan's teachings, as the nobles and priests of Talinie had done. Another was to oppose them, as was more common in Anuire. The third was to seek reconciliation and compromise. Among the people, this last position was the most common, and for a time, Blaede Vathormane of Haelyn's Aegis was a very popular figure. So it remained until someone could win the people over to Fitzalan's teachings with mysticism, ritual that taught Haelyn's message rather than obscured it, and loving compassion.
The temples had been united by Fitzalan, and state was united by Jarod Dannis, it only remained for the people to embrace the new unity. 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 shout of heavenly visions. Attendants carefully transcribed her episodes and circulated them as the Aromatic Scriptures. Janna's ecstatic teachings interpreted Fitzalan's spiritual message used flowers as metaphors for explaining 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.
Fitzalan and Janna's successors in the Northern Imperial Temple continued through to Thalia Armara, a direct descendent of Janna's lieutenant, Bhàtair Armara. When Thalia was declared Supreme Hierarch of the temple, she had already been Thane nearly all her life. This united both the state of Talinie and the Northern Imperial Temple, making explicit and alliance implied for generations.
|Calant, Boeruine (3/4)||AB (3)||TD (2)||Bor (3)||AI (4)|
|Dhalaese, Boeruine (3/4)||AB (3)||LB (3)||GTh (3)||AI (4)|
|TD (0)||Bor (0)|
|Fhoruile, Boeruine (3/4)||AB (3)||TD (2)||Bor (3)||AI (4)|
|Rivien, Boeruine (6/1)||AB (6)||TD (6)||Bor (5)||AI (1)|
|Seasedge, Boeruine (6/0)||AB (6)||LB (3)||Bor (5)||AI (0)|
|Tariene, Boeruine (6/0)||AB (6)||TD (5)||Bor (4)||AI (0)|
|HTC (1)||SH (2)|
|Freestead, Talinie (2/5)||TD (1)||TD (2)||SH (2)||TA (5)|
|Greensward, Talinie (2/5)||TD (2)||TD (2)||BA (2)||TA (5)|
|Ice Haven, Talinie (3/4)||TD (2)||TD (3)||BA (2)||TA (4)|
|Lindholme, Talinie (5/2)||TD (3)||TD (4)||BA (3)||TA (2)|
|AB (2)||SH (2)|
|Seaport, Talinie (1/4)||AB (1)||TD (0)||SH (1)||TA (3)|
|Serimist, Talinie (2/5)||TD (1)||TD (2)||BA (3)||TA (5)|
|Winter's Deep, Talinie (3/4)||TD (2)||TD (2)||SH (3)||TA (4)|
|Abbreviations: TD=Thuriene Donalls (Talinie) (Northern Imperial Temple; LB=Linnias Baccaere (Hidden Temple of Cuiraécen) ; Bor=Arien Borthein (Boeruine Trading Guild); SH=Storm Holtson (Stjordvik Traders); BA=Bannier Andien (Andien and Sons); GTh=Gaelin Thuried (Upper Anuire Traders); AB=Aeric Boeruine (Boeruine); TA=Torele Anviras; AI=Arlen Innis.|
- Law: Thuruene Donalls holds the law in Talinie with only a little interference from her liege, Aeric Boeruine. It is the temples hold the law, not the state.
- Temples: The Northern Imperial Temple is universal in its position.
- Guilds: The puppets of Storm Holtson and Bannier Andien fight a vicious underground war to control Talinie's trade.
- Source: Torele Anviras has returned from a mysterious absence to assume control of the realm's sources.
, 01-20-2009 at 11:57 PM|
Last edited by , 10-23-2011 at 02:09 PM
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