Orikrindian pantheon (pt 3)

Next installment of the Orikrindian pantheon. This one focuses on the sea goddess and her half-mortal son.

One thing I want to note is the pervasiveness of the pantheon. These gods are recognized not only in Orikrindia itself, but also across eastern Ei. Some in Quarios also worship these gods, especially Orikrindian immigrants (such as Elucuna, of course). They did, however, originate with the native inhabits of Orikrindia (the island, rather before the “nation” itself was a thing), so they are referred to as gods of Orikrindia in Aeniith itself (as I will continue to call them in meta-documentation too). Worship practices do vary per region. My descriptions here apply to traditional methods in Orikrindia.

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Lumaya

Lumaya is a goddess who has domain over water. Primarily, she is associated with the sea, although her influence extends over all bodies of water. She is said to be the younger sister of Hestaya and Moltirin.

In Orikrindian depictions, she has pale blue skin and hair of seagrass. Sometimes she takes the form of a seal, and it is for this reason that Orikrindians, unlike some neighbors, do not eat the flesh of certain species of seals.

One of the powers of Lumaya are her eyes, which appear like swirls of abalone and are thought to be able to enchant those who stare into them. This is the origin of Orikrindian belief that gazing into the sea for too long can be dangerous to mental health.

Lumaya has temples by the edges of the sea. They are usually decorated with items that reflect the local maritime life and culture: carved driftwood, sea glass, shells, pearls, and other findings from nearby the temple. The priestesses of Lumaya are known to be “sponsored” by the national navy of Orikrindia.

Prayers to Lumaya are offered especially during certain very strong tides. She is revered by all mariners, who usually have an altar to her in their homes. Since most mariners in Orikrindia are men, this is probably the one female goddess that is worshipped mostly by men in Orikrindia. The devotees of Lumaya are some of the most vocal and open, possibly due to the island nature of Orikrindia as a country. Naval military successes are frequently credited to Lumaya’s blessing.

Epithets: Halumaya (Lumaya the Great, lit. ‘Great Water’), Ti-Hendessaya Cacalsaya (’The Infinite Sea’), Tu-Hemas Heltasye Plesstolsye (’the Lady of the Cerulean Voice’), Co-Lyosyal Tun-Golinorisi ‘The Grief of the Weak’), Syalanyas Culimyenya (’Queen of Journeys’), Tu-Syalanyas Yalunt Tellened (’The Queen of Star-eyes’), Tu-Hemas Estolis (’The Blue Lady’).

Giessembe (demi-god)

This is the child of Lumaya, Giessembe, who has control over bodies of fresh water. He is often depicted as a small child, a demi-god, who was conceived by Lumaya with a mortal man. The story of their meeting and relationship is told in the Ori epic poem Ti-Clespes Endessonisye na Bestini (’The Jewel of the Great Sea and the Earth’).

Giessembe’s name means ‘calm fresh water’, with embe being the word for any general body of fresh water.

In Orikrindian legend, Giessembe was sent to prove himself as an adult divine being, since he was weak as a baby, despite being a half-god. He was challenged by Apyolus, god of fire, to quell the fires of the mighty Cetispeltaya, a volcano whose summit cut through the fabric of the heavens. To accomplish this, he asked his mother to cause the sea to evaporate into clouds above the world, and a great rain fell for ten days without cease, and filled the fresh water streams and rivers. He then called on Moltirin to cause the trees of the forests to lie on their bellies so that his waters could flow freely around the world. Peltas (of the Twin Gods) was asked to make time flow quickly along the rivers so all the waters would surge across the land. Thus was Giessembe able to seep his waters down inside the earth (with the help of Hestaya) and extinguish the mighty volcano from the inside out.

Giessembe used his method of extinguishing the fires as a living hymn and tribute to the gods who had helped him, impressing Apyolus so much that he granted Giessembe the greater powers that were due him as a fully grown demi-god.

Epithets: Tu-Plenis (’The Half’), Tu-Prastanes (’The Clever’)

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Mintaka

Orikrindian lore and legend

I want to do a new segment about Orikrindian lore and legend (which may expand to other cultures), small little blurbs about ideas that have been floating around my head for a while. They don’t really have a home yet so we’ll see what becomes of them.

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Today’s is about the Song of Esala. The word is not originally Ori, but comes from a nearby language from the mainland of Ei to the west. The word was originally Ashal, but changed over time and to fit Ori phonology a bit more closely.

The Song of Esala is a song that is supposedly divine in nature, or at least somehow supernatural. It is said to be heard in the wilderness when one is completely alone and can neither see, hear, nor sense in any way another person. It is at this time that one may hear the Song of Esala. What Esala is or means is not clear. There are competing etymological theories, variously saying that it is the name of a person, a place, or a concept.

To hear the Song of Esala is a disturbing experience. The listener will think they are going mad and may run even deeper into the wilderness, always avoiding the proximity of any other person. It is thought that this leads them to wander permanently and live like a wild person until a certain, unspecified time before their death, during which they will be released from the hold of the Song and “wake up” from their fervor or delirium. This time is usually months to years after first hearing the Song.

The Song is thought by some in Orikrindia to be a curse of the goddess Moltirin put upon those who have displeased her in some way. Others, however, consider it a kind of intense blessing given by the spirits of animals in the wild that have found a soul that they deem kindred to their own and wish to draw it in amongst themselves. This view is the predominant idea in Behr Gehen (country of the Ei Lands, west of Orikrindia). Those who return from being held by the Song are considered holy and are given special treatment upon their return to society.

Whatever the nature of the Song of Esala, it is a part of folklore that is commonly understood as one of the many risks of venturing into the wilds alone for lengths of time, both across Orikrindia and the Ei Lands.

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Mintaka

Working on the pantheon of Orikrindia. This is part 1, the first three members.

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Orikrindian pantheon

Apyolus– Father God – God of Fire, Lava, Volcanoes, War, Season of Summer, the Sun (Worshipped as Force of Creation, as a Progenitor of all life, a driving mechanism of all living things)

Epithets: Ti-Hasterya Apyasye (The Light of Fire), Ti-Lyaya Iyutreseya (The All-seeing Sun), Yalus (Eye), Tetuya Huseya (First Father), Ti-Hupuse (The Knowing), Yoris (Watcher)

Apyolus is worshipped as a creator of life, a driver of existence. Without Apyolus it is believed all things would be as dead and empty husks, existing the likeness of life but without the crucial spark of consciousness.

The priesthood is Apyolus is all-male and open to those who have fathered at least one child. Their temples tend in be in cities, at the feet of volcanoes, and in the southern most reaches of Orikrindia. In the summer is the Festival of Fire, wherein people make material sacrifices to the fire in hopes of gaining such boons as: fertility/children, health good crops, warmer weather in winter, renewed physical and mental vigor.

Hestaya: Mother Goddess – Goddess of the Mountains, Air, Wind, Cold Weather, Snow, Ice (Worshipped as a stable force in the world, a protector, defender) –

Epithets include: Ti-Nimaya (the Mother), Ti-Nimaya Balnyeya (the Great Mother), Nimaya Coruni (Mother of Stone), Corus Cacalsas (Undying Stone), Crestenya Astersye (Kindler of Light [e.g. lightning via storms])

Prayer to Hestaya:

‘The solidness of the mountain

of stone

of ice

the movement of wind

the forbidding power of storms

the threat of winter

the protective blanket of snow covering the earth,

this our Mother

the Mighty

and the True

the One Who Covers,

The Kindler of Light

The Mother of Stone,

Undying and Eternal

Her light will find you

In the dark

Her stones surround you

Where no enemy can pierce’

Moltirin– Goddess of the Forest:also matron goddess of mysteries, vengeance, the past, memory, rebirth/reawakening, justice, lost things, women who have died in childbirth, dead children, men who have died in battle, storms, and those who have been wronged.

Associated with: birds of prey (especially ravens and vultures and other carrion creatures), wolves, snakes, spiders, vines/plants/trees, the color green/black/grey

Epithets: Ti-Roruya (The Dark), Cyentas Nastas (Wise Aunt), Emas Tin-Mulyurana (Woman of the Forests), Cyeltenalenya (Revenger), Murlinis (Raven)

Moltirin is equally feared and loved. She is the sister of Hestaya, who is married to Apyolus.

She inhabits all forests and is a very mysterious figure, rarely responding to the entreaties of humankind. When she does, though, it is with ferocity and sincerity. Moltirin may take the form of a young or very old woman. Prayers to Moltirin are given by those who have been wronged, those who are lost, who are pariahs, those whose honor has been destroyed (either by themselves or others). She is a protector of women and children, occasionally protecting them via deception or violence. She keeps the souls of those who die within her woods, as well as the souls of the drowned. These spirits are said to wander the places where they died, as it is there that they are with Moltirin.

Devotees to Moltirin often live in forests as hermits or wise women. They, like their goddess, are both feared and respected. Many work as apothecaries as well, specializing in both healing substances and poisons. In Orikrindia, one might visit a Woman of the Woods (as they’re typically called) to procure a less-than-legal concoction for whatever need.