marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

all together now

Recently read some books with some world-building I hope does not continue.

Polytheistic worlds -- though whether the gods appear on stage doesn't matter -- and the gods first off, are entirely random.  You have, say, the Horse God and the Justice-Bringer and the Lord of the Mountains, so there's no thematic pattern.  

Then you have, as you so often do, priests solely dedicated to one god.  Possible.  Followed by rivalry between the priests, and then (implicitly or explicitly) between the gods.

Without context.

Now, the habit of treating religions as collections of myths may exaggerate this tendency, but certainly gods tended to have connections.  Familial, most of all, but also alliances, history, etc.  Normally you worshiped every relevant god and were respectful of them all lest you get punished.  Rivalries about which gods should be worshiped generally concentrate on the introduction of foreign gods.  The presence of actual deities could introduce other factors, but it would turn on the gods' characters.  Clashing for the sake of clashing strikes me as implausible.  Do they not even have slogans for the worshipers to explain why this god and not that one?

And of course, the metaphysics get complicated.  DO these gods have anything to do with the mountains, the horses, the administration of justice?  What happens if the Justice Bringer takes over?  Does the sea level go down?
Tags: world-building: deities, world-building: metaphysics, world-building: religion

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