In the north, it is said that Valïa was born of an illicit union between The Guardian Paladin in her female aspect, and Eldar, and that the birth of “the child god” forever sundered creation, allowing evil into the world for the first time, and all manner of dark and fell beasts to walk the earth. Only the Father God’s sacrifice closed the rift, but not before the damage had been done. Thus, the Paladin religion maintains, the birth of the god of the common man forever bound their rulers to watch over and protect them; and to this day, that is how the Valïan religion works, north of the equator.
The Valïan Church on the continent of sylantia and in Cascadia and the ACSK is primarily a subsidiary of Paladin church operations. While the Paladin ystävat1 minister to their flocks of nobles, their Valïan Brother (or sister) counterparts are ministering to their servants, laborers, farmers, ostlers, blacksmiths, drivers, and so on. You may not find a Paladin temple in every village, but you will find a Valïan monastery, just as you will find a Valïan monastery attached to nearly every Paladin temple.
The Valïans also run the only charity hospitals, homeless shelters, and hospice care facilities, all funded by their Paladin overlords, as well as by the lavish donations of the Urilians and their wealthy parishioners.
Valïanism in Sudaan
In Sudaan, the Valïan religion looks superficially similar to its northern denomination, but even the origin myth is different. There, Valïa is not considered the unfortunate after thought of two gods. In Sudaan, Valïa has always been there. His teachings of love, tolerance, and compassion for all living things is the backbone of Sudaani culture. It created “the imperial father/mother” archetype, and it constantly tasks those better off in society with the burden of taking care of those less fortunate.
The Sudaani version of the religion is also far more pragmatic in matters of war. In the north, the religion is entirely pacifistic, probably in large part to keep the common masses under the control of their Paladin overlords (though that might be just a tad too pessimistic). In the south, it is understood that humanity is under constant threat, and that those threats must be answered. Warriors are treated with honor. They are considered “tainted by the blood of their enemies,” and so are honored for the sacrifice they have made for the betterment of humanity.
A unique branch of Valïan religious service are the curiously talented “seers.” Seers are priests, but they do not minister to parishioners the way the Brothers do. Rather, they are observers. They remember everything they have seen or heard perfectly. An eidetic memory is the first requirement to enter the seer priesthood. After that, considerable training is required to perfect the memory and recall it in a way that can be memorialized, usually for legal purposes.
Valïan seers just might be the most powerful priests on the planet, or share that billing with the Urilian judges. The testimony of a seer has, time and time again, decided matters of law. In short, if a Valïan seer testifies that it happened, it happened in exactly that way at exactly that time. Refuting seer testimony is considered to be practically impossible.
- Plural of ystäv, which means “vicar”, or parish priest, a Paladin priest who serves in ministry. ↵