White Hand/Religion in NEQ

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Knight Random
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White Hand/Religion in NEQ

Post by Knight Random » Sun May 18, 2003 7:20 pm

It may seem a bit late to bring this subject up, but while looking over the old board I noticed that my episodes about the White Hand caused some controversy due to their treatment of Christiantiy. I certainly didn't intend it as an attack on Christianity and the Catholic church in any way, in fact I am a committed Catholic myself. To be honest, I always assumed that Allaria was Christian in most threads. I probably got this idea from MSG's thread, although it is true that his conception of the EAS world is more Earth-like in many ways than the "normal" EAS world. Also, the beginning of the story that Emry says "May God be with you on your quest," and there are also a number of threads that involve Fred in the Christian Heaven and Hell.

To be honest, religion of any form is not very significant in most EAS episodes, even though religion is a central part of any society. What I was trying for in that thread was a balanced look at what the Christian religion might be like in the NEQ world, which touched on both the good and the bad--admittedly a very hard thing to pull off. Also, the main reason that I made it such an important element was that there were already religious elements in the plot (IE Vincent's rantings and the implication that the scroll was created by angels). JH's and Ib's episodes hinted at a White Hand that was more monastic in nature, and I wanted to explain why that was.

So that was my logic there. Maybe it was a mistake, but I certianly didn't intend to attack Christianity or offend anyone.

BTW, how do you spell Qrom? This seems to be the name of the main god in most of the threads I've seen where Allaria isn't Christian, but I've seen is spelled about three or four different ways in various episodes. Of course, this is a quasi-medieval civilization where rules of spelling would presumably be looser, but you'd think they'd try to standardize the spelling of their gods' names.

JH
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Post by JH » Sun May 18, 2003 7:36 pm

I don't think that you need worry about offending anyone. I can't recall ever seeing anything that suggested that anyone was offended.

Religion hasn't featured much, but where it has come up different threads seem to have had very different ideas. In some threads Allaria is seemingly Christian, and that might fit in well with the Arthurian legend influence of having knights sworn to uphold noble ideals. In other threads, there are various gods, mostly made up ones. Aqualaria sometimes also has made up gods, or sometimes a Goddess. In one or two threads it follows the old Greek gods.
JH

Knight Random
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Religion

Post by Knight Random » Sun May 18, 2003 8:00 pm

I'm almost certain that someone--IB, maybe--thought that it was offensive. Although maybe just because he thought that it didn't fit in the EAS world.

Anableps
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Religion

Post by Anableps » Sun May 18, 2003 9:47 pm

I was not offended, and from what I read I do not think that anyone else was either. From what I remember, there was some concern that an episode with Christian themes would prevent use of themes involving alternative or speculative religious systems, but as there are many counter-examples in other branches, it was agreed that there is a lot of freedom in the NEQ on this topic.

Y

Qrom, gods and religions

Post by Y » Sun May 18, 2003 11:53 pm

Hey there!

So far nothing has offended me in particular, although there have been negative jabs at monastic culture in general and I did not see any treatment regarding their positive qualities... and there was one episode where an author had Fred try to kill Jesus (come to think of it, this episode DID offend me). As Knight Random brought up the subject I ask all you authors to not put in Jesus, Mohammed, the Bhuddha, or any of the Patriarchs into your stories unless you plan on doing a respectful treatment (I say this not because I am a believer in each of these faiths... how could I be? But because I was raised to value religion and to respect even those with whom I have theological disagreements). If you want to take jabs at the abuses of religion, of fanatics, of con-men out to make a buck (of which our real history is full) use a fake religion to do it! Have fun with it, with the treatment you wish to create - I myself enjoy philosophical conversations between our characters and I have used aspects of the Greek mythos, elements of Christian thought (without refering to Christian facts), and random pagan symbols.

This, I think, is the risk one takes when using a real-life religion in a fantasy setting. If the religions are made up then one can say anything about a particular religious culture (ie monotheism vs polytheism, celibacy vs freedom to marry, sacrifices taken by humans vs. human sacrifices, etc). I find it easier to simply treat everything like a fantasy, one set in an unreal world made up of various bits and pieces of human history and with creatures that have never been (elves, orcs, homunculi, etc).

As to Qrom, this is a direct borrowing from the work of Robert E. Howard. The God of the Mountains, the god worshipped by the Cimmerians (including Conan) is named Crom. In a few episodes I have used Crom, Qrom, even Qurom. Is Fred a duplicate of Conan? No. Is Allaria the same as Cimmeria? Not by a long shot! But I prefer the savage feel of the Conan worldview to the more sterile (ie civilized) feel of a world filled with structured European monarchies (sorry all you medievalists).

The world of King Arthur has been mentioned, but even in those myths (a few I have read and more I have seen depicted on film) are rarely civilized. They present a savage world where demons can be summoned by the right incantations; where dragons are real and are really EVIL; where women can be temptresses and men can be viciously cruel; where trust must be earned, and even then betrayal is a reality.

THESE are the elements of great storytelling in my opinion. And with that I say: By Qrom, where is my ale!?!

p.s. as to spelling systems... even in the real world they were not globally standardized until --to my knowledge-- the advent of the 19th century!

JH
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Re: Qrom, gods and religions

Post by JH » Mon May 19, 2003 7:10 pm

Y wrote: there was one episode where an author had Fred try to kill Jesus (come to think of it, this episode DID offend me).
I think as moderator I deleted or heavily edited that one, but I can't recall for sure. If you, or anyone, can tell me the episode number, I can edit it if it still needs it.
JH

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