AOT Worship spell

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Guernicus
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AOT Worship spell

Postby Guernicus » Sun Oct 16, 2011 9:08 pm

Hello,

My first post here to say I've finished to read Age of Treason and I am really impressed ; this book is amazing ! Each page, you can feel subjects have been thoroughly thought. The setting is very interesting, detailed and evocative, even if I'm sure I've not understood everything, as english is not my native language ( I have to make several readings). New rules are very cool, specially about Alchemy and Enchanting.

I hope to see lots of supplements for this world.

My question is about the Worship (divinity) sorcery spell : How can it be possible to "Worship" a god through Sorcery ? In my understanding, Divine magic and Sorcery are widely alien to each other and work very differently. Why is this "Worship" spell necessary ? Why it is not a divine spell ?

Thank you.
Titus
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Re: AOT Worship spell

Postby Titus » Mon Oct 17, 2011 5:27 am

That is part of the interesting twisting and blending that this setting does with the magic systems. A priest does not even have to be devoted to the god (no Pact) to be able to perform the worship ritual. They can only do the minor worship services, a.k.a - Minor Rites, where people can get blessings. To perform Major Rites does require the Call (specific deity) divine spell. At Major Rites, pacts to the god can be made, POW dedicated to the god, divine spells and gifts received.

The idea of divine magic and sorcery magic being widely alien to each other is a Gloranthan cultural artifact, presented primarily from the perspective of the Orlanthi people. "Those godless, atheists of the God Learners (2nd age) or the west (3rd age) use evil magics called sorcery." I think in the western religions of Glorantha, there is mixing of wizardry (sorcery) and worship.
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Guernicus
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Re: AOT Worship spell

Postby Guernicus » Tue Oct 18, 2011 8:57 pm

Thanks for your answer.

So a secular sorcerer who found a grimoire with Worship (Divinity) / Sanctif is able to learn these spells and to use them to invoke ritual blessings from this Divinity. As only Sorcery is concerned so far, this sorcerer does not have to follow the divinity religious path nor subscribe to any of its dogma, right ?

So Worship (Divinity) / Sanctify give a low and temporary access to the god power. And, as their are Sorcery, their magic are not channeled from the divinity but comes from the very fabric of the universe . From this point of view Worship/Sanctify Sorcery could be seen as a kind of benevolent demonology or theurgy ?

Sorcerers who specialize in this area can work as ordinary "contractor" priests

On the other hand, there are full priests with Pact; who can directly channel divine magic from their gods. And can use the Call spell to offer Major rites.

Have I understood well ?
Simulacrum
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Re: AOT Worship spell

Postby Simulacrum » Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:20 pm

You are correct - Titus certainly explained as well as I could have done.

While Divine Magic comes from the gods to their devoted adherents via a Pact, the rituals by which people generally conduct their religious observances are man-made, and therefor equate to sorcery rather than Divine Magic.

Incidentally, it is modelled on [a generalisation of] real world ancient pagan religion where priests can be professional "fixers" between people and gods, without being devoted to one of them in particular; and where cults nevertheless spring that have their own dedicated priesthoods.
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Guernicus
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Re: AOT Worship spell

Postby Guernicus » Wed Oct 19, 2011 7:39 pm

Very interesting.

What is the standard attitude of the devoted priests towards the "fixer" priests ? Do they consider them as concurrents, enemies, assistants, allies ? Or do they simply ignore them ?

Thanks again.
Prime_Evil
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Re: AOT Worship spell

Postby Prime_Evil » Wed Oct 19, 2011 8:45 pm

Perhaps it might be helpful to think of the difference as being similar to the modern distinction between a doctor who is a general practitioner and one who is a specialist in a particular field of medicine?

As explained on p49 of AoT, most ordinary citizens have a transactional attitude towards religion - they participate in religious rites because they expect that they get something out of the deal. This attitude is rare in the modern era, but was very common in the ancient world. It tends to blur the line between magic and religion more than most RPGs permit, but very much captures the spirit of ancient religion.

Incidentally, here's a quote from Joscelyn Godwin's Mystery Religions of the Ancient World about the way that Roman citizens regard religion that might provide a useful reference point for the way that ordinary cult participants view their activities:
The established religion of Rome was rather like the traditional Church of England: a solemn but unmystical affair, respectable yet undemanding of personal enthusiasm or spiritual effort. It supported the institutions of the family and the State by stressing rectitude in the performance of sacred and secular duties alike...Piety towards the gods was reflected in filial piety, the microcosm of the family corresponding to the macrocosm of Rome and the megacosm of a rather small universe. Such a religion considers the gods unphilosophically, intimately, as beings slightly larger than life who sometimes respond to human appeals. It seeks its rewards in this life, considering death to be the end, to all intents and purposes, of the individual's existence.

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