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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Part of my ongoing series on the mythology of my world, where my goal was to take "classic" D&D gods and remake them into more complete religious ideologies people might actually want to worship. (See Wee Jas, Corellon Larethian, Nerull, Erythnul, Hextor, Lolth, The Deep Ones)

    Also, intended to be readable in any order, and for it to be easy to transplant individual parts into other settings.

    Olidammara, The Laughing Rogue

    "I disagree. You want to bring back someone that you’ve lost. You might want money. Maybe you want women. Or, you might want to protect the world. These are all common things people want. Things that their hearts desire. Greed may not be good, but it’s not so bad, either. You humans think greed is just for money and power! But everyone wants something they don’t have."
    - Greed, "Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood"

    "The world doesn't belong to you! It belongs to ME!"
    - Last words of Auleric the Swift, Paladin of Olidammara, before his legendary self-sacrifice.

    Expanded Domains: Celerity, Chaos, City, Family, Greed, Halfling, Illusion, Knowledge, Kobold, Luck, Lust, Protection, Travel, Trickery
    Portfolio: Adventure, Bards (different type than Corellon though), Beggars, Birthdays, Competitive Altruism, Daring, Desire, Gifts, Greed, Heyokas, Humor, Laughter, Materialism, Mischief, Music, Potlatches, Rogues, Romance, Street Performers, Thieves, Tricks, Vagabonds, Wine
    Theme: http://listenonrepeat.com/watch/?v=F...f_World_Lyrics, http://listenonrepeat.com/watch/?v=z...d_[Lyrics]

    Knowledge (Religion) DC 10:
    Olidammara is the god of desire, associated with celebration, adventure, greed, romance, mischief, and scoundrels. He is a hedonistic trickster deity who encourages his followers to live life to the fullest, and revel in the joys the world has to offer... even if it means you sometimes have to take what you want without permission. His open encouragement of greed and mischief makes his followers unpopular in some societies.

    In art, Olidammara is depicted as a split-faced figure with a twisted smile. One side of his visage is dark and mirthful, the other bright and serious. His symbol is the twisted mirror, representing self-interest as well as the sacred role of humor.

    It is said that Olidammara invented wine as a gift for Moradin... which kept the Soul Forger distracted from his mischief.

    Knowledge (Religion) DC 15:
    Olidammara has a bit of a bad reputation, sometimes reviled as the "god of greed." If you ask Olidammara's followers, those stodgy priests of other deities are all just brainwashed by the divine establishment. What kind of real good god just wants you to be an ascetic, prostrating yourself before them, giving everything of yourself but getting nothing back? Olidammara actually wants to give his followers things. Real things! You deserve things! The world is yours for the taking! Seize the day and keep it! Heck, steal it if you have to. Any man who takes the effort to steal something himself (instead of systematically) probably wants it more than you anyways. And those stealing systematically make thievery necessary, because hey, there isn't enough good stuff to go around when guys like that are involved. Olidammara especially likes when you steal valuables from the wealthy, because then "nobody gets hurts, except for those insurance crooks."

    To Olidammara's faithful, greed is not a sin, for it is desire that makes anything precious and sacred in the first place. Behind greed is a love of the fine things in life. Indulge your greed! Protect the fine things in life! Greed is greater than just a love of trinkets. Your mind and body are yours, so take care of them! Your friends are yours, so take care of them! Your society is yours, so take care of it! Your world is yours, so take care of it! In possessing all things, you will do right by all things, for only a fool would harm their own possessions. Possess it all, cherish it all, and take responsibility for it all! Fight for that which is precious to you. True strength comes from having something to protect. To one faithful to Olidammara, joy does not come from within, but rather it comes from that which you surround yourself with, so make everything around you good.

    Some temples do collections via gambling, with parishioners betting on what curve the storyteller is going to throw in next to modify the parable they're preaching. It keeps the stories morphing while it also requires that the faithful actually know the dogma and the material. It also funds the temple in a way that's difficult to account for, allowing certain acquisitions to be explained away.

    In fact, temples of Olidammara often pride themselves on "nobody falling asleep" during their services, which are often laden with music, entertainment (including things like ledgerdemain "magic" shows), games, and raucous storytelling. Pranks, too, are sacred, because things need to be stirred up from time to time to give life its proper spice.

    Knowledge (Religion) DC 20:
    Olidammaran scripture is updated far more often than most, or at least rarely quoted directly. Clergy are encouraged to mingle amongst temple visitors and relay Olidammara's teachings in plain language. Essentially, the exact opposite of old school Christianity requiring sermons to be given in Latin; Olidammara wants you to spread his message in the contemporary local style.

    A core idea in Olidammaran dogma is that Olidammara does not like to be sacrificed to... at least not in the sense most other gods do. Indeed, his only hard and fast law is that none should ever bow to him. One re-telling of a classic myth phrased it thus: "Keep your stuff! I'm not the kind of god who wants you to be ascetic and just worship and sacrifice to him for nothing in return. Screw that noise. I don't want your lame mortal stuff anyways. I'm up here in the heavens with my sweet God bling, man. You wanna do right by me, just gimme a fun adventure story to tell. Go be the trickster hero of an epic poem or something. Teach someone something without letting them know it was you. Or whatever's your style. Hey man if I already knew the story I wanted to hear I would have written it myself."

    Olidammara's gospel warns against merely intuiting your desires. Perceptions, even of ourselves, get all wrapped up in social norms, and as a god of humor he's all about subverting—and seeing past—the mess of habit and ingrained thought. An Olidammaran must look into the twisted mirror and find what they, personally, are truly greedy for.

    For instance, while Olidammarans often emphasize that greed can be virtuous, being a miser is not, for a miser acts out of fear rather than desire. Following your desires, they say, doesn't mean -hoarding- everything. That's not how real greed works. The problem with misers is that they aren't greedy enough to spend all that money they've got! Gotta circulate that stuff to get anything that isn't a bunch of yellow pictures of old guys. Who wants a bunch of bad yellow pictures of old guys? That stuff only has value in circulation. They don't understand real greed. They are like a dragon, afraid of losing their pile of useless lucre that they sleep on to feel safe. That's not greed. That's insecurity. That's fear. Be brave! Get things! Deck ALL of the halls! Give the BEST present so that you look better than your friends!

    In fact, Olidammara encourages holidays and celebrations that involve competitive altruism (such as potlatches) or focusing on a single person's desires (such as birthdays, a day all about you!). He also encourages followers to give away everything they own upon their deaths so that they'll treat your memory right (otherwise, what would your money be doing for you? Nothing! Gotta think of the self-interest!).

    Despite what might on the surface appear to be fairly similar ideals, Olidammara often quarrels with Bahamut. He understands but disagrees with Tiamat, and tries to help her work through her paranoia issues. Heironeous sometimes tries to chew him out or set him straight, but Olidammara just laughs and likes to mess with him.

    Knowledge (Religion) DC 25:
    Olidammara is actually way older than some might expect, for he was born the first time a god felt desire, making him literally as old as want. One of the oldest known shrines to any god of the modern pantheon, known as the Burned Circle, honors Olidammara as an enlightened figure. Also noteworthy is the fact that Olidammara seems to show up in almost every culture of almost every intelligent race in the world, though worship of him is rarely dominant anywhere. In mythology, the other gods are occasionally surprised by his depth of experience, control, and wisdom, which seems like such a contrast with his youthful exuberance and mischief. Scholars can't seem to agree on what the first desire was (and Olidammara doesn't ever talk about his age, it is only ever implied), so there is some theological speculation of how old he really is... some even placing his birth back at the moment that Nerull first sought to create disparity. Despite his age, he's still only an intermediate deity, since he has never expanded his portfolio. He jokes that the one he started with keeps him too busy already.

    Olidammaran faith has its roots in heyoka (ritual clown) traditions. To simply call a heyoka a fool does not do justice to their role. Heyokas carry the medicine of chaos. The heyoka is a sacred thief, robbing people of their over-seriousness, their anxieties, their preconceptions. The sacred role of the heyoka is to be a mirror, his backwards behavior exemplifying the very opposite of normal in order to give us a clearer understanding of how to act ourselves. In their antics we see our own imperfections revealed so that we might reflect, get unstuck, and evolve spiritually. Through showy displays of satire and blasphemy, heyokas create a cultural dissonance from which anxiety is free to collapse on itself into laughter.

    Olidammara's black-and-white face represents the black and white paint of a heyoka. His split visage represents a twisted reflection in a sacred mirror.

    Knowledge (Religion) DC 30:
    The oral traditions of the Lokarrh proclaim that Gruumsh's first inspiration for a world without need for Corellon or Moradin came from one of Olidammara's heyoka performances. They also say that during Gruumsh's ill-fated rebellion, Olidammara sided with Corellon and Moradin, but his antics always screwed things up for his side, causing Corellon to lay suspicion on him and bring him before a council of judgment. A tipsy Moradin exonerated him, saying that you can't blame a ritual clown for being an oaf.

    Nevertheless, some suspect that Olidammara is far more capable than he lets on, for he is a wise and ancient trickster. After all, some say that humor is a path to learning, and so Olidammara is at his core one of the gods of Knowledge.

    Organization: The Motley Temple

    "Well, if you want to stay, you'll have to offer a donation to spruce the place up. Alms for yourself, really."
    - Adlyn Altner, priestess of the Motley Temple.

    The Motley Temple is named because it is decorated entirely with relics plundered from a variety of religions, kingdoms, and eras, supposedly all from legal dungeon delving. It is a proud patron of adventurers, but is often suspected of also being a base for a thieves guild. The knights of Heironeous shake the place down from time to time, but always come up with nothing while the head priest gives them her best winning smile and a rude gesture.

    Many shake their heads and talk about it as a "hive of scum and villainy" populated by unscrupulous vagabonds and adventurers. The adventurers themselves, however, can find all of their needs met here, and an effective base of operations... so long as they make the appropriate donations to the temple's decor. The Motley Temple is frequented by middlemen who can connect you with just the magic item you want or find a place to offload a dragon's hoard, healers who can fix up that pesky petrification problem, oracles who can put you on track to your destination, a board full of job notices, or whatever an adventurer might need.

    The religious services of the Motley Temple are highlighted by raucous storytelling, gambling, song and drink. Parishioners often bet on what curve the storyteller is going to throw in next to modify the parable they're preaching. It keeps the stories morphing while it also requires that the faithful actually know the dogma and the material if they want to get in on the game. It also funds the temple in a way that's difficult to account for, allowing many of the temple's acquisitions to be conveniently explained away. As a base of operations for adventurers, the temple's entertaining services also often include shows of martial, magical, or roguish skills, or stories of dungeon delves.

    Organization: The Disciples of Yuehai

    "You, who sang down the walls of the Spired City and slew the Bright Emperor. Are you worthy of my desire?"
    - Yuehai the Wanderer

    When asked, "who is the strongest fighter in the world?" many would reply "Yuehai, the Wanderer." A legendary crusader of Olidammara, Yuehai is greedy for only one thing: The challenge of a worthy opponent, met in single combat. The legendary wanderer traveled the world, mastering the world's fighting styles and besting the champions of each region he visited. He traveled to lands so distant that none had heard of his homeland, all in search of opponents worthy of his blade.

    Being an elf, Yuehai takes the long view. If a city had no challenges for him now, perhaps they may in the future. Plant a seed, and it will grow. So, wherever he went, he acquired disciples, each of whom he trained and sent back into the world to found their own schools or pursue their own desires. Dojos sprang up from those who had benefited from his tutelage along the path of his travels. Here, they spread his ideas about the philosophy of combat, to be used for whatever ends they please.

    The core of the philosophy is straightforward. In war, as in all things in life, every step of your method must cut through to correct answer in the same movement. It is not enough to learn how to parry or swing, or master a difficult maneuver. In battle, your every act must cut the enemy in the same movement, whether you dodge, parry, strike, grapple, or be struck yourself. It is essential that every act serve the primary goal, as the only true measure of skill is effectiveness, and the only true measure of effectiveness is victory.

    If you fail to achieve victory, it is futile to claim that your style was sound and that you acted with propriety (That's the way of the scrub, after all). There is no such thing as an unearned victory in war; the man who wins is always a cut above, and to make excuses is to remain forever weak. The battlefield knows not your petty scruples, only the man who is left standing. The true master must first master the void, emptying himself of all superficial desires save the one that is truest to him. Only then will he have the clarity of the void. Only then, with a mind unclouded, can he seize his greatest desire. Only then will a warrior have true sakki, the killing intent. And humor, of all things, can help you do that, because humor helps you to see your own superficial flaws and contrived seriousness for what they really are.

    Yuehai is said to have left to travel the planes centuries ago, but legend has it that someday he will return to challenge the world's heroes. Some of the students of his teachings aspire to be ready to challenge him when he reappears, and many become wanderers seeking strength abroad themselves. But there are any number of reasons for one to desire to be strong...

    Code of Conduct: Paladins of Olidammara

    "Everyone's gotta go sometime. Lives are like money. They exist to be spent. You just gotta make sure you spend yours on something nice."
    - Auleric the Swift

    This code of conduct applies to those who would call themselves paladins of the faith, not just any follower of Olidammara.

    - Do not bow to anyone. Well, okay, if you want to tip your head as a greeting or as a bit of romantic flair, that's all fine and well and stylish. But no prostrating yourself before a guy like you're going to kiss his feet! Definitely no prostrating. Not even to the gods. Not even to your pal Olidammara. Especially not, even! Bow only to yourself. Die before accepting any master who would require you to kiss the dirt. Bowing like a magician to a round of applause is fine. You can bow to show off. Bowing in submission is not! Got it? Good!

    - Be true to yourself. Put no master before yourself. Find out what you are really greedy for and pursue that desire.

    - Have a sense of humor. Do not be somber and boring. Definitely don't be depressing, because then you'll be depressed and that's not in your interest at all. Liven things up! I don't really care how you do it. Keep a few tricks up your sleeve.

    - When a dance partner offers you a hand, take the dance. When the house rises in song, let your voice join in.

    - No vows of poverty or temperance or celibacy or any of that stuff. Why would you do that to yourself?

    - Do not be a miser. Those guys really ruffle my feathers, they get greed all wrong. Keep as much for yourself as you can meaningfully spend on yourself, no more. If you get more than that, you can spend it on yourself by giving it to others who can make things around you better, and remember all that stuff around you is yours too whether the law says you own it or not. That money does you no good rotting in a warehouse somewhere, unspent. It has to be out there in the world doing something. I mean, maybe I could understand if you could swim in it like Scrooge McDuck, but I saw a guy try that once and it totally didn't work.

    - Give away all your stuff when you die. Don't just keep it all in an estate. That's not even good for your kids. Have you seen those spoiled kids? You don't want that, do you? Heck, they probably don't even want that, even if they don't know it yet.

    Worshippers are still wondering who Scrooge McDuck is.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Olidammara, the Laughing Rogue

    High quality Olidammaran holy symbols (e.g. not the wooden ones) are these cool little twisted mirrors. Different sects twist them up differently for various reasons. It's difficult for me to find a really good example (googling mirrors mostly gives me things that are flat and circular or rectangular), but think something like this:


    or


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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Olidammara, the Laughing Rogue

    This makes Olidammara a lot less sinister then the version I recall reading in the PHB. I like it.

    How many gods are you going to be doing? I ask because I had a neat idea of redoing the Deck of Many Things to have each card be a different deity, and I am wondering if I could use your write up as the basis of the concept, as it seems more fleshed out. Plus it makes it easier then building a pantheon from scratch.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Olidammara, the Laughing Rogue

    Quote Originally Posted by Mith View Post
    This makes Olidammara a lot less sinister then the version I recall reading in the PHB. I like it.

    How many gods are you going to be doing? I ask because I had a neat idea of redoing the Deck of Many Things to have each card be a different deity, and I am wondering if I could use your write up as the basis of the concept, as it seems more fleshed out. Plus it makes it easier then building a pantheon from scratch.
    The Three Kings, Rulers of the Gods
    - Corellon Larethian, god of blood, seed, and nobility
    - Moradin, god of earth and labor
    - Gruumsh, god of sky and revolutions

    A Very Dysfunctional Family
    - Heironeous, god of honor
    - Hextor, god of duty
    - Nerull, god of separations
    - Jehenna, goddess of karma

    The New Gods
    - Erythnul, god of evolution
    - Joramy, goddess of fire
    - Vecna, the secret god

    The Heirs of Io
    - Bahamut, god of connections
    - Tiamat, goddess of dominion

    And More
    - Sehanine Moonbow, goddess of dreams
    - Lolth, goddess of fate and ambition
    - Olidammara, god of desire
    - Wee Jas, goddess of transitions
    - Obad-Hai, god of growth
    - Boccob, god of wisdom
    - Kord, god of pain
    - Pelor, the sun
    - Maglubiyet, god of hope
    - The Deep Ones (Procan, Sekolah, etc), gods of life, salt, and madness

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Olidammara, the Laughing Rogue

    23 gods. Well, that's convenient as far as a number of cards matching the original Deck.

    Just to be clear, you would be OK with me developing this revised Deck using your work? I will plan to post it on here for review as well, since it will likely take a different theme then the original Deck, and hopefully be a lot more interesting then the original DoMT.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Olidammara, the Laughing Rogue

    Quote Originally Posted by Mith View Post
    23 gods. Well, that's convenient as far as a number of cards matching the original Deck.

    Just to be clear, you would be OK with me developing this revised Deck using your work? I will plan to post it on here for review as well, since it will likely take a different theme then the original Deck, and hopefully be a lot more interesting then the original DoMT.
    Sure. Just remember to credit me for my work.

    Next god writeup will probably be one of the following: Wee Jas, Corellon Larethian, Moradin, Hextor, The Deep Ones. Any preferences?

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Olidammara, the Laughing Rogue

    I will have no problem crediting your work.

    Wee Jas sounds like an interesting write up.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    - The Deep Ones entry would cover what happens right after Nerull creates disparity: The Creation War. It also establishes stuff like what aberrations and psionics are. Pelor, Moradin, Corellon, and Gruumsh's roles in the creation of the world are mentioned.

    - Moradin and Corellon are the Twin Kings of the gods and rulers of the pantheon (There used to be a third king, but they kicked Gruumsh out when he rebelled). Each represents a major aspect of nature as well as a major aspect of civilization.

    - Wee Jas is the goddess of transitions and transmutations, originally a sort of "business efficiency manager" of the gods. She took on the role of psychopomp after Nerull went off the rails, and is quite possibly the main reason that he hasn't been able to end this celestial era yet.

    - Hextor is the general of the gods who defended the pantheon from his father Nerull during the Age of Winter, slew the Forgotten One, and generally cleans up messes for the Twin Kings. He may have PTSD.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Potential titles to add to deities:

    Obad -Hai is the God of Summer (He rules during the growing periods, and dies at the end of Summer.)

    Nerull is the God of Winter (He kills Obad - Hai every Fall (Samhain/Halloween)?)

    Wee Jas is the Goddess of the Equinoxes (She buries and raises Obad-Hai every Fall and Spring)

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Mith View Post
    Potential titles to add to deities:

    Obad -Hai is the God of Summer (He rules during the growing periods, and dies at the end of Summer.)

    Nerull is the God of Winter (He kills Obad - Hai every Fall (Samhain/Halloween)?)

    Wee Jas is the Goddess of the Equinoxes (She buries and raises Obad-Hai every Fall and Spring)
    Cool

    Obad-Hai is actually a new god every year (we just keep giving him the same name). He looks different every time and everything. Think kinda like...



    Anyways, this means that Obad-Hai is always young, and a bit of a wild man. A deific Tarzan. He's a primal badass, and much of his life is spent in combat with Nerull. The length of the seasons is determined by how long he lasts. The fact that Obad-Hai always loses is no indictment of his badassery; a fight to the death with the god of death is not what one would call a fair fight. Nerull just kinda goes "Oh, I can win by killing the other guy? That sounds easy." Remember that during the Winter Age, the gods and all their hosts together failed to ultimately defeat him. Obad-Hai is holding him off in single combat. Some think that if the Three Kings ever reconciled and really got their **** together they could take out Nerull, but even if they could get along they might not want to personally risk themselves in such a confrontation with a guy who churns out death effects by the millions.

    Harvest festivals show gratitude to Obad-Hai. They have an air sort of like those scenes in movies when one of the heroes takes a bullet for you, and he's propped up and bleeding out and says "Did... did I do it? Is everyone safe?" And everyone's in tears and says "You did it man. Everyone is happy and super safe." And he smiles and closes his eyes.

    At another holiday (possibly the winter solstice?), you're supposed to be very loud and distracting while Wee Jas sneaks out, evading Nerull's watchful eye, and steals Obad-Hai's corpse so she can plant a new Green Man somewhere.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by LudicSavant View Post
    Nerull just kinda goes "Oh, I can win by killing the other guy? That sounds easy." Remember that during the Winter Age, the gods and all their hosts together failed to ultimately defeat him. Obad-Hai is holding him off in single combat.
    To quote TFS Cell: "Oh that is just hardcore!"
    Come check out my setting blog: Ruins of the Forbidden Elder

    Inspired by LudicSavant, I am posting deities: Erebos, The Black Sun

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    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Jendekit View Post
    To quote TFS Cell: "Oh that is just hardcore!"
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooS673vtNtQ

    Obad-Hai holds off Nerull partly by overcharging his abilities so hard that he's creating wave upon wave of crushing growth faster than Nerull can kill it.

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    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Another idea: A symbol for Obad-Hai is the triskele, or Celtic Triple Spiral:



    It symbolizes Obad-Hai in his ascent in the spring, his full power in the summer, and his descent in the autumn, and how the cycle always continues. As for Obad-Hai being a new God each time, does each incarnation have the memories of the previous incarnation, making this more a cyclic rebirth of the same deity, or is it a completely new deity every season? On one hand, it points out how badass Obad-Hai is if he gains enough power and skill every season to be able to fight Nerull, only to fall at the very end. But on the other hand, does he keep experiences over the long term? Thus, allowing him to plan far in advance for the next campaign as it were.

    Basically, to be more concise, is Obad-Hai more of a position that each new Green Man serves for a season before dying, with the next Green Man being the new Obad-Hai, who has instinctual knowledge of the office, but has to learn other things anew? Or is it the same individual in a new body each season?

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    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Mith View Post
    Another idea: A symbol for Obad-Hai is the triskele, or Celtic Triple Spiral:



    It symbolizes Obad-Hai in his ascent in the spring, his full power in the summer, and his descent in the autumn, and how the cycle always continues. As for Obad-Hai being a new God each time, does each incarnation have the memories of the previous incarnation, making this more a cyclic rebirth of the same deity, or is it a completely new deity every season? On one hand, it points out how badass Obad-Hai is if he gains enough power and skill every season to be able to fight Nerull, only to fall at the very end. But on the other hand, does he keep experiences over the long term? Thus, allowing him to plan far in advance for the next campaign as it were.

    Basically, to be more concise, is Obad-Hai more of a position that each new Green Man serves for a season before dying, with the next Green Man being the new Obad-Hai, who has instinctual knowledge of the office, but has to learn other things anew? Or is it the same individual in a new body each season?
    Oooh, I'll definitely have to look into the triskele. Thanks a ton for the suggestion

    As for your questions: According to most myths about Obad-Hai, it is not the same mind in a new body. Obad-Hai actually dies. He doesn't get resurrected (If humans can figure out a way to counter resurrection magic, Nerull sure as hell can), a being inherits his portfolio. He does not naturally have the memories of his predecessors.

    However, we're talking about gods with access to powerful magics and superhuman capabilities. He could, for instance, magically archive his experiences for his successor to know, allowing collusion between multiple lives when it comes to planning in advance for the next campaign. Even with such a memory transfer though, they would be the memories of foreign minds. For example, in Avatar: The Last Airbender, Aang might be able to get advice from past Avatars, but he isn't them.

    Additionally, a number of the other gods would be more than happy to help him out with long term planning and generally providing him support.

    The way killing gods works in this world is covered in the Erythnul entry:

    Quote Originally Posted by LudicSavant View Post
    Mainstream theology has it that divinity cannot be created or destroyed. However, it can be divided, devoured, hidden, given away, and so forth. So, you can kill a god, destroying their body and identity, but you can't destroy their portfolio or their divine essence. The energy has to and will go somewhere. In the case of Joramy and Erythnul, they inherited parts of the old god of fire (which, like all of the portfolios, had a good deal more than just fire in it).

    Now, usually when you destroy a god's body they die... or, at least, lose their identity. The trouble with Erythnul is that if you split her into two pieces, both pieces will still be Erythnul.
    Oh, also: The first Obad-Hai was best friends with the Forgotten One (the old god of fire whose name was erased from history by order of Corellon Larethian. Even the memory of his identity was erased from dreams by Sehanine Moonbow). They had a symbiotic relationship... you know, the whole idea of fires facilitating new growth.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Turning the conversation back to Olidammara: Olidammara banks on the idea that the selfish choice is also the good choice.

    After all, science says that nice guys finish first.

    In the Olidammaran worldview, this extends all the way down. Humor, daring, and true self-interest is seen as virtuous, and it is other faults (like fear and bias) that hold people and societies back.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by LudicSavant View Post
    "The world doesn't belong to you! It belongs to ME!"
    - Last words of Auleric the Swift, Paladin of Olidammara, before his legendary self-sacrifice.
    For I have purchased it with my ... wait, I was supposed to have another line there!
    - (Only heard by whatever supernatural being collected his soul)

    Nice job making Olidammara, the god of thieves, knaves, and scoundrels, into an embodiment of so many worthwhile virtues. Not that scoundrels and knaves aren't full of worthwhile virtues, but they tend to get shoehorned in to being "I will take all your money and sell you to the glue factory" types, which isn't as much fun.
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    Rockphed said it well.
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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Rockphed View Post
    Nice job making Olidammara, the god of thieves, knaves, and scoundrels, into an embodiment of so many worthwhile virtues.
    Thanks!

    I really wanted to give him moral virtues that are pretty different from those our culture might be used to hearing about. Indeed, many of Olidammara's virtues (materialism, worldliness, self-interest, romance, desire, hedonism, subversive humor) are frequently classified as sins in the western European cultural background. And various things that he considers bad (such as asceticism, chastity, temperance, submission) are often considered virtues in said cultural background.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    For what it's worth, I made a cleric of Olimdammara in a game and, when talking to the DM about what that meant, wound up with the below. I don't know if it would fit in with your ideas or not, but if you like it, well, I'm glad to share it.

    The clergy break into CN, CE, and CG branches of theology, each debating a bit but also accepting one another as valid. The god does not want to restrict his followers. All state that skill is a measure of virtue. The more skilled you are, the more you can gain for yourself, the more you can spread joy and mirth, etc. For those saddened when their stuff is stolen, well, they should've been skilled enough not to lose it in the first place.

    For the CN, they tend to speak about gaining it for themselves and their own. Decorate the halls, get money to spend on your friends and those you enjoy, spread pleasure and freedom. If you can persuade others to see the joy, great, but if not, well, freedom is what he values, and no reason to get upset about it if they reject it. They see the CG and CE as being too focused on side issues.

    For the CG, they tend to gain for others, but also appreciate the good. Perhaps a pickpocket gang is made from an orphanage, so the young kids can provide for themselves while praising a god that understands them. Those who are stolen from can use the experience to motivate them to gain more skill. Help all reach the ideal of Olimdammara. They see the CN and CE as too focused on their own freedom/pleasure and not that of others.

    For the CE, they tend to focus on their own pleasure. Steal, wrench, etc. for your own good. People need to have skill to have joy and freedom, and you will make sure you are the epitome of it so others can't take it from you. In this you show honor to your god. They see the CG and CN as dishonoring their god by not focusing on personal desire.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by JeenLeen View Post
    For what it's worth, I made a cleric of Olimdammara in a game and, when talking to the DM about what that meant, wound up with the below. I don't know if it would fit in with your ideas or not, but if you like it, well, I'm glad to share it.

    The clergy break into CN, CE, and CG branches of theology, each debating a bit but also accepting one another as valid. The god does not want to restrict his followers. All state that skill is a measure of virtue. The more skilled you are, the more you can gain for yourself, the more you can spread joy and mirth, etc. For those saddened when their stuff is stolen, well, they should've been skilled enough not to lose it in the first place.

    For the CN, they tend to speak about gaining it for themselves and their own. Decorate the halls, get money to spend on your friends and those you enjoy, spread pleasure and freedom. If you can persuade others to see the joy, great, but if not, well, freedom is what he values, and no reason to get upset about it if they reject it. They see the CG and CE as being too focused on side issues.

    For the CG, they tend to gain for others, but also appreciate the good. Perhaps a pickpocket gang is made from an orphanage, so the young kids can provide for themselves while praising a god that understands them. Those who are stolen from can use the experience to motivate them to gain more skill. Help all reach the ideal of Olimdammara. They see the CN and CE as too focused on their own freedom/pleasure and not that of others.

    For the CE, they tend to focus on their own pleasure. Steal, wrench, etc. for your own good. People need to have skill to have joy and freedom, and you will make sure you are the epitome of it so others can't take it from you. In this you show honor to your god. They see the CG and CN as dishonoring their god by not focusing on personal desire.
    Neat! Thanks for sharing :)

    My version of Olidammara doesn't emphasize skill as much, though some of the sects certainly might (The Disciples of Yuehai, for instance). For many of my Olidammarans, skill is another subject of desire... or a tool to gain what you desire.

    Corellon and Lolth both have a lot to say about skill and exceptional individuals. In Lolth's case, it's because of the way fate works; no matter what kind of destiny she hands off for you, it won't matter if you don't have the strength to seize the day when opportunity knocks. This is why she's so intent on making her followers stronger.

    For Kord, mastery of the mind and body is a path to enlightenment.

    Spoiler: Kord
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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    You know, the talk about Obad-Hai gave me an idea. The sinister cult of a dead god is sort of a staple in fantasy. How about a cult dedicated to bringing back a former Obad-Hai in some way? One could even mix in a kind of nostalgia. "The year of the Long Summer was the best year in living memory, and that Obad-Hai was the best there ever was."

    Or how about a hero cult, of warriors trying to prove themselves worth of becoming the next Obad-Hai? After all, people taking on mythological roles such as Sacrifical King, Harvest Queen, Spring Princess, etc. aren't exactly unheard of.
    I solemnly swear,
    To devote my life and abilities,
    In defence of the United Nations of Earth,
    To defend the Constitution of Man,
    And to further the universal rights of all sentient life.
    From the depths of the pacific, to the edge of the galaxy.
    For as long as I shall live.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    You know, the talk about Obad-Hai gave me an idea. The sinister cult of a dead god is sort of a staple in fantasy. How about a cult dedicated to bringing back a former Obad-Hai in some way? One could even mix in a kind of nostalgia. "The year of the Long Summer was the best year in living memory, and that Obad-Hai was the best there ever was."

    Or how about a hero cult, of warriors trying to prove themselves worth of becoming the next Obad-Hai? After all, people taking on mythological roles such as Sacrifical King, Harvest Queen, Spring Princess, etc. aren't exactly unheard of.
    Love it! I've been pondering a few ideas in this vein myself. Here's one from my current draft:

    Previous incarnations of Obad-Hai have devised a magical system of archiving their memories to pass on to their successors, allowing collusion and planning between iterations. The Obad-Hai of 127 years ago not only did not use this system, but destroyed the records and broke the chain of memories. For the last 126 years, subsequent Obad-Hais have been trying to piece together why their predecessor might have done this... and what he got up to during that time.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by LudicSavant View Post
    Thanks!

    I really wanted to give him moral virtues that are pretty different from those our culture might be used to hearing about. Indeed, many of Olidammara's virtues (materialism, worldliness, self-interest, romance, desire, hedonism, subversive humor) are frequently classified as sins in the western European cultural background. And various things that he considers bad (such as asceticism, chastity, temperance, submission) are often considered virtues in said cultural background.
    Ah, see, I saw the virtues of self-sufficiency, free-will, and equality. He is the sort of God that made sure mortals had free will. He is much more interested in people being interesting than anything else.

    Put another way, while Heironious might be the patron of paladin's who ride off to put down evil overlords, Olidammara is the patron of those who rise up to support said paladin's quest.
    Quote Originally Posted by Wardog View Post
    Rockphed said it well.
    Quote Originally Posted by Yuki Akuma View Post
    We should change the collective noun for crocodiles to "an abundance of crocodiles".
    Dragontar by Serpentine.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Rockphed View Post
    Ah, see, I saw the virtues of self-sufficiency, free-will, and equality. He is the sort of God that made sure mortals had free will.
    That certainly fits too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rockphed View Post
    Put another way, while Heironious might be the patron of paladin's who ride off to put down evil overlords, Olidammara is the patron of those who rise up to support said paladin's quest.
    Oh yeah, of course. The Paladin's helping you out, so you should help him help you out!

    Spoiler: Some extra random ramblings on Olidammaran philosophy
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    According to Olidammaran philosophy, altruism and self-sacrifice can be selfish... and there's nothing wrong with that, because in their eyes the alternative to selfish altruism is masochistic altruism.

    A selfish man might be altruistic because it will improve their reputations, or their legacy, or their relationships, or the quality of the community they live in, or even because of that warm fuzzy feeling you get from knowing that you made a difference, which Olidammarans point to as something to be coveted and sought after greedily.

    Basically, altruism can serve your desires and goals. The alternative is that your altruism works against your desires and goals, and that just doesn't make any sense to them. "Why would you do it that way?" they'd ask, puzzled. Being good to others shouldn't come at the cost of making you miserable and dissatisfied with your own life. That's just unnecessary and masochistic, in their view.

    To an Olidammaran, a selfish man may well sacrifice their life for a cause; it just means that the cause had greater value to them than extending their lifespan (just look at all the people who say things like "eh, who wants to live forever anyway?"). For example, a man who puts the welfare of his family before his own might value the legacy he leaves behind, or the collective endeavor of the social group, more than he values his own personal comfort. Or, perhaps knowing that his family is okay is the most important psychological factor in his own personal comfort! A guy who just wanders around helping people might just plain enjoy helping people, and find a deeper joy in that than they could find by surrounding themselves with piles of gold coins.

    Even if the thing that makes you happiest is, say, becoming a rich merchant prince with a beautiful palace, an Olidammaran might suggest that nice guys can finish first. According to Olidammaran philosophy, fostering trust and mutual well-being will generally allow you to have more successful long-term business and survival strategies.

    On the other hand, when push comes to shove, if you have to take what you want without permission (such as thievery), that's generally fine with Olidammarans too. Sometimes people just can't get along, and need to assert their own desires over others to have any chance of achieving them. To an Olidammaran, everyone's got the right to pursue their own happiness, in whatever form happiness takes for them.

    It's a take on the issue that's far removed from some medieval ideologies of selflessness based in submission, self-flagellation, innocence, retributive justice, asceticism, and penance. All of these things have little value in Olidammaran philosophies.

    Revenge? Sure, if a bear is trying to maul you you might kill the bear, but you wouldn't be doing it to punish the bear, you'd be doing it to stop the bear from mauling you, because it's your desire to not be mauled. The point of punishment isn't about what people "deserve" it's about getting them to behave the way you want.

    Asceticism? They think those guys are missing the point: All that worldly stuff is there for you to use it!

    Submission? There is no Divine Right of Kings or anything like that in the Olidammaran view. If they want something, they can get in line! Everyone has agency, and there is value in that independent agency. One shouldn't be merely an extension of somebody else's will.

    Penance and innocence? The Olidammaran goal isn't "tip the scales just enough to be on the Good Person side instead of the Bad Person side." The goal is to achieve your desires as well as possible, to optimize your goal-seeking as far as possible. You don't want to just tip the scales, you want to put so much weight on the side you want that the scale collapses from the weight! It's not about the side you're on, it's about the direction you're going in.

    Elaborating on that; they generally don't believe in evaluating whether you are a "good person" or a "bad person" as a whole; an Olidammaran would say "who cares?" What matters is whether what you decide to do, right now, will make the world a better place. What you did in the past can't be changed; the future still lays ahead of us.

    PS: As the god of humor, Olidammara may possess the ability to break the fourth wall, hence Scrooge McDuck.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    I can picture Olidammara's second manifestation to his followers:

    "No! Stop It!"

    Basically this

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by Mith View Post
    I can picture Olidammara's second manifestation to his followers:

    "No! Stop It!"

    Basically this
    Yeah, that's totally Olidammara. "Stop sacrificing to me!"

    I've been thinking about the way all of the knowledge deities fit together in my version of the pantheon. Just as the Three Kings are different aspects of society and nature, many deities are different aspects of the quest for information. For instance...

    Wee Jas: Culture (the retention of knowledge through generations and the keeping of records)
    Boccob: Inquiry (understanding through direct observation and analysis)
    Erythnul: Evolution (memetics and subtle, emergent behaviors and adaptations; Instinct)
    Joramy: Argumentation (refinement of ideas through challenge; debate and criticism)
    Olidammara: Humor (Wit, guile, satire, reframing norms, play; a primal sort of learning)

    Also, each of the Three Kings crafted parts of the soul. Moradin, the Soul Forger created Memory as the core of experience, a module everything else could be attached to. Corellon then added Imagination, so that creatures could conceive of experiences they had not actually had. And then Gruumsh added Emotion, so that each would be driven to explore their own spiritual path.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    So is this still a thing? If so when are we going to see the next god?
    Come check out my setting blog: Ruins of the Forbidden Elder

    Inspired by LudicSavant, I am posting deities: Erebos, The Black Sun

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Real life's been throwing curveballs, so I guess I ended up taking a bit of an extended holiday break from this. That said, the pantheon is going to get finished, it's just been delayed a bit. Lolth is next. Not sure when.

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    Quote Originally Posted by LudicSavant View Post
    Cool

    Harvest festivals show gratitude to Obad-Hai. They have an air sort of like those scenes in movies when one of the heroes takes a bullet for you, and he's propped up and bleeding out and says "Did... did I do it? Is everyone safe?" And everyone's in tears and says "You did it man. Everyone is happy and super safe." And he smiles and closes his eyes.
    "Such a man might be thought wealthy, indeed."

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    Default Re: My pantheon's take on Olidammara

    I'll be using this guy in my setting or at least his basis. It has been my favourite intention to add a trickster god to this setting and I love how much you've extended his lore. Your work here has really inspired me. Thanks! As for a new god write-up, I'd be really stoked to see Bahamut, as he's one of my favourite published gods.
    Quote Originally Posted by digiman619 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Hogsy View Post
    You guys are like fairies who grant wishes.
    80% of me is really touched that you said that. 5% of me is pondering about the phrase, as wish-granting wasn't a huge part of their portfolio, and the remaining 15% is desperate to tell you not to take gifts (ESPECIALLY magical ones) from faeries. Those tend to be far more costly than you realize.

    Spoiler: My Homebrew
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