Church of Lasant
The Church of Lasant, also known as the old religion, is the official church and religion of Lasant.
Lasant’s official pantheon consists of Sidarch, Hiropeh, Ielda, Avillion, Exene, and Avatrunei. According to classical Lasani teachings, these six deities rule the cosmos, and all others are either servants or foes of them. In the queendom of Mernè, the worship of any gods but these is outright forbidden. In the queendoms of Deaux and Arfàn, the ban only extends to evil gods.
The old religion explains that creation was ordained by all six gods together, for the sake of the mortals, who were in the earliest days as mindless animals, roaming the void. In order to prepare for the elevation of life into sapience, the three male gods created the natural world. Sidarch crafted the sun, stars, and earth; Avillion spread plants and animal life over Meier’s surface; Avatrunei ordained the sky, clouds, seas, and seasons. Then the goddesses Hiropeh, Ielda, and Exene granted gifts to some mortals, raising them above the animals. Hiropeh gave them a sense of right and wrong; Ielda gave them the ability to know love, friendship, and mercy; Exene gave them intelligence and the capacity to reason.
The last gift of the six gods was civilization, and rulers to watch over it. The revelation that these rulers have been dragons has been taken in stride by the Church, which now teaches that the dragons were created alongside humanoids, to protect and watch over them.
Prayer involves solemn chanting, mostly in Celestial. Prayer services, along with official translations into Common, are standardized throughout Lasant. The better churches also offer the service of a communal share language spell cast before prayer for an appropriate donation. When the attending cleric can provide it, it is customary for those who can afford the donation and cannot speak Celestial to receive the spell at least once a year, if not more.
Births, weddings, and deaths are all sacred rites, as are the baby blessing on the 36th day of an infant’s life, an adulthood ceremony (usually held at 15 for humans), and the Rite of Wisdom (held upon entering old age; 53 is traditional for humans).
The Church’s clergy has a hierarchical structure. Its leader is the Queen of Lasant, which means Vymacosuenta. In practice, the Church is run by the Paramount Council, which is appointed by the Queen and responsible to her directly.
Ranks within the Church of Lasant are:
- Queen of Lasant
Clerics associated with the Church of Lasant select one of the gods in the official pantheon to take as their patron. It is from this deity that the cleric receives spellcasting abilities and other class features. However, church services glorify all six deities in their own appropriate ways, and clerics of any of the pantheon gods may perform such joint services. There exist separate rites and services intended for only one god at a time; these require a cleric of the approprate god.
Paladins, like clerics, select a single deity to take as their patron, but are ordained by the Church as a whole. They cannot, however, conduct pantheon services.
Inquisitors serve a single deity exclusively. They are ordained specifically by the clergy of that deity, and have no more connection to the other gods of the pantheon than a layperson.
Oracles have no place in the old religion. They are not by any means banned, but since they are not ordained, they have no official standing. Their divine powers are often treated with hostility.
Adepts following the old religion do not select a single patron deity, but pray to all six. They cannot lead services unless no cleric is available.
The Church of Lasant does not deny the existence of other gods. Kyon and Hylaeos in particular are frequently worshiped in addition to the official pantheon. As long as the rites, dogmas, and virtues of the church are upheld, and no outside god or goddess is placed above those in the pantheon, such worship is legal in places like Silverstream.
After death, the old religion teaches, the soul goes to the courtroom of Avatrunei, there to be judged for its deeds in life. Depending on the verdict of the Eternal Judge, whose judgments are always fair and right, the soul is sent on to its final fate. Adherence to the rites and tenets of the Church is important to obtaining a favorable verdict from Avatrunei, according to the Church itself.
Overall, the church teaches the sort of positive values held by the six gods it represents: righteousness, honesty, chivalry, obedience to authority, kindness, and so on. The church teaches that men and women each have their roles in society to play, and that the deities treat all mortals based on their deeds, not the circumstances of their birth.
Evil and chaos are both seen as extremely negative forces, to be condemned. It is not possible for neutral evil, chaotic neutral, or chaotic evil individuals to be in good standing with the old religion. Such people are bound for a terrible judgement from Avatrunei, and should be shunned. The old religion teaches that some people are simply evil, and can never be reclaimed.
The Church of Lasant’s primary holy texts are a series of books called the Divine Lasani Scripture. It is written in Celestial. The Scripture is not fixed; the wording, included texts, and translations are updated by the central Church every six years.
The Triune Religion is considered heretical by the Church of Lasant. The Church does not buy in to the Triune’s theology, and sees it only as a cult worshiping three unrelated goddesses, one of whom is dangerously chaotic and one of whom is outright evil.
Until recently, the Triune Religion would have been completely banned in Silverstream, along with the rest of the queendom of Arfàn. However, worship of the Triune is growing so fast that the secular authorities decided that the law had to be changed. Triune worship is no longer illegal, but the Church still considers it heresy, and teaches that those who worship Saralek will surely be sent to Hell.
For this reason, tensions between the old religion and the new religion are extremely high.