The dwarven religion began with a self-proclaimed incarnation of the dwarven god Moradin. The incarnation's name was Tharkun, and he claimed that he was born of a mortal mother, but was indeed the son of Moradin. Tharkun claimed that he had been sent here to aid the dwarven people in a terible conflict that was soon to arise, and it happened that he was right. Shortly after Tharkun's rise to fame among the dwarven people, while the leaders of the dwarven people (at the time) were contemplating how to deal with Tharkun, the darker dwarves from deeper underground, the duergar began attacking. Once this reached the ears of the leaders they accepted that since Tharkun's prediction was true, there must be some validity to what he said.
Once the leaders were willing to take Tharkun's advise, Tharkun would become an advisor to the generals of the dwarven armies, joining in as well, as all dwarves do. Eventually all dwarves would see how talented he was in combat, and how well he seemed to know the battlefield even without much experience in battlefield situations.
Even to this day, most every dwarf and many non-dwarven, military strategists believe that it is thanks to Tharkun that the dwarves prevailed over the duergar. Once the war was over, all the dwarven people turned to Tharkun for guidance, asking for what else he was meant to teach them. At that point, Tharkun would begin to teach of his father, and his father's brother's and sisters, and about the importance of family and honoring them in your life even after they pass on. This is ultimately what created dwarven civilization as we know it, and developed into their religion as we see it today.
Creed & BeliefsEdit
The dwarven faith is based upon the life and teachings of Tharkun, which were written down and bound within the book known as the Tharkun Records. Above all else, the Records preach that to be a true dwarf, you must:
- achieve a pure kinship with all brother and sister dwarves
- be able to protect and take care of yourself if you are able
- and your family should be a top priority.
These are the three and only tenets of Dwarven Ancestralism. While there are several other teachings and lifestyle choices within the Records that most dwarves try to emulate, these practices are not actually demanded of its followers like the three are.
Among the dwarves and their faith, there are seven deities, each with their own domain, and each powerful in their own right. Among the gods, Moradin is the dominant deity. He is seen as a wise older dwarf, and first spoke to the dwarven people through his incarnation Tharkun. The other six deities are all viewed as his brothers and sisters, with the exception of Abbathora, who is his wife. The following is a list of the dwarven gods and their domains:
- Moradin Lawhammer, greater deity of law and order, smithing, forging, and wisdom, chief deity of the Moradinsammon (god)
- Abbathora Wisemother, greater deity of healing and mercy, wife of Moradin (goddess)
- Berronar Truesilver, intermediate deity of honesty, safety, and records, patron deity of female dwarven clerics (goddess)
- Clangeddin Silverbeard, intermediate deity of loyalty, oaths, and the faithful, patron deity of male dwarven clerics (god)
- Thard Braveaxe, intermediate deity of war, battle, valor, and bravery, patron deity of dwarven paladins (god)
- Dugmaren Brightmantle, lesser deity of scholarship and invention (god)
- Dumathoin Metalbearer, lesser deity of exploration, mining, gems and ores (god)
Clergy & TemplesEdit
Dwarven paladins and clerics are charged with maintaining and advancing the dwarven race in all walks of life, honoring their ancestors, and serving the god in which they dedicate their life to specifically in the best way possible. They perform a wide range of public ceremonies (marriages, blessing new ventures, crowning monarchs, and the like). They also educate the young, arrange communal defenses, and sponsor expeditions to settle new lands. They also keep detailed genealogies and historical archives. Every temple or shrine to a dwarven god include an anvil and a forge that the clerics keep perpetually burning. The anvil can be a simple decoration or part of a working smithy, but it often serves as the temple altar.
Actual temples dedicated to Dwarven Ancestralism hold statues for each of the gods, and the great ancestors of the past which are honored as Paragons among the dwarven people. Dwarven temples are usually only located within settlements of around 400 dwarves or more.
Within each dwarven home, there is always a small room, usually towards the front of the house, which is basically a shrine to ancestors, with a single statue to a particular god with that family identifies more personally. This room usually has a small fire source which is lite when praying. In the middle of the room is the statue to their personal god, with small stone tablets surrounding the walls with the names of family members written across them.