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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3644 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  01:44:14  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TKU

Well, there are IIRC other systems of afterlife on Toril besides the standard Faerunian one with Kelemvor, although his reach does seem to be pretty far. I think it makes plenty of sense for that a lot of these multiversal pantheons to not cede authority entirely to Kelemvor. The Seldarine does seem to generally have jurisdiction over Elven souls except where they worship gods outside of the Seldarine, and Lolth seems like she also has broad authority over evil elven souls (drow specifically but not exclusively) that the Seldarine doesn't want a part of.

I expect there's some sort of mechanism or agreement between the gods to sort them out similar to Kelemvor's in practice though, with variations from pantheon to pantheon.



Whatever it is, if a drow rejected Lolth internally, it's stupid that she gets to claim their soul. It has little to no narrative impact (little to narrative is written about the souls of the dead, because the living make the world) and it just reeks of "original sin" kind of narrative: "if you don't seek salvation in God, you automatically go to Satan" or something; in this case it'd like "if you don't worship another god, you automatically go to Lolth, because you were born drow". It also poses the question of drow who weren't born in Lolthite society. For example, a drow born in an Eilistraean community who doesn't want to have much to do with religion, so they neither worship Lolth nor Eilistraee nor anyone else. Would Lolth have a claim of them just because they're drow? That's stupid.

As for the "evil elf" thingy, this implies the presence of someone who judges whether someone was good or evil, and that's a really wonky, really arbitrary kind of thing. We judge actions based on our morals, but any decently written evil character will never see themselves as evil, because no one ever sees themselves as evil in reality, unless they're on the verge of changing. Lolth herself shouldn't see herself as evil. "Hurr durr, I'm evil" is absolute dog levels of writing.

Edited by - Irennan on 09 Jan 2022 01:49:54
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Azar
Senior Scribe

764 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  03:31:20  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan

it just reeks of "original sin" kind of narrative: "if you don't seek salvation in God, you automatically go to Satan" or something


^ A devastating point.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.

Earth names in the Realms are more common than you may think.
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TKU
Learned Scribe

USA
118 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  04:44:48  Show Profile Send TKU a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan
Whatever it is, if a drow rejected Lolth internally, it's stupid that she gets to claim their soul. It has little to no narrative impact (little to narrative is written about the souls of the dead, because the living make the world) and it just reeks of "original sin" kind of narrative: "if you don't seek salvation in God, you automatically go to Satan" or something; in this case it'd like "if you don't worship another god, you automatically go to Lolth, because you were born drow". It also poses the question of drow who weren't born in Lolthite society. For example, a drow born in an Eilistraean community who doesn't want to have much to do with religion, so they neither worship Lolth nor Eilistraee nor anyone else. Would Lolth have a claim of them just because they're drow? That's stupid.

The loaded choice of terminology you use to label my argument doesn't change anything. You could just as easily apply that point to the whole Kelemvor situation itself. 'Worship a god or Kelemvor will figure out what to do with you'.

And I would assume, as I mentioned in the post you are quoting, that there would be a similar mechanism to the one outside of the Seldarine/Dark Seldarine afterlives, where Seldarine/Dark Seldarine deities can 'claim' souls of dark elves based on similar criteria. So the children of Elistraeen's would go to Eilistraee and the children of Lolth's worshippers would go to Lolth.

Those individuals who would normally be judged 'false' or 'faithless' though-I imagine they'd go to Lolth to decide whatever she wants to do with them instead of Kelemvor.

quote:
Originally posted by IrennanAs for the "evil elf" thingy, this implies the presence of someone who judges whether someone was good or evil, and that's a really wonky, really arbitrary kind of thing. We judge actions based on our morals, but any decently written evil character will never see themselves as evil, because no one ever sees themselves as evil in reality, unless they're on the verge of changing. Lolth herself shouldn't see herself as evil. "Hurr durr, I'm evil" is absolute dog levels of writing.



Well yes, you'll notice I used it in quotes. Not a personal moral judgement on those that fall under Lolth's jurisdiction, but an observation that Elves whose actions or attitudes cause the Seldarine to write them off leaves them open to be claimed by the Spider Queen. We know of at least one such instance where a surface elf who found himself falling under the Spider Queen's domain because he acted too much like one of hers.

At least in instances where she is better written, IMO the Spider Queen does come off as a bit more complex, and there are at least some ambiguous aspects to her fall that might evoke some empathy. I think that she does genuinely believe that what she subjects the drow to is for their own benefit (it isn't) as it turns them into a reflection of herself. In that way her religion is sorta set up as this perpetual loop to justify itself and her. As long as she's the foremost member of the Dark Seldarine, and as long as her worshippers thrive and conquer, she, her methods, and her actions can never be wrong in her eyes and she will never, ever self-question though.

'lolrandom chaos for chaos' sake, I'm bored' Lolth though, the direction her portrayal leans in more and more these days I agree 100%.
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3644 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  05:08:54  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TKU

The loaded choice of terminology you use to label my argument doesn't change anything. You could just as easily apply that point to the whole Kelemvor situation itself. 'Worship a god or Kelemvor will figure out what to do with you'.


Hence why it's good that they're doing away with the faithless. Though Lolth's case is different, because the takeaway here is that drow are inherently destined to her, even if they reject her, until they worship another god.

quote:
And I would assume, as I mentioned in the post you are quoting, that there would be a similar mechanism to the one outside of the Seldarine/Dark Seldarine afterlives, where Seldarine/Dark Seldarine deities can 'claim' souls of dark elves based on similar criteria. So the children of Elistraeen's would go to Eilistraee and the children of Lolth's worshippers would go to Lolth.




Why, though? Where do we read that the Seldarine are automatically entitled to unclaimed elves, or Lolth to unclaimed evil elves&drow? I'm genuinely asking, because I was under the impression that all souls went to the fugue. Also because it sounds very random that a drow who rejected Lolth gets taken by her. Because said drow rejected her, they made it clear--at least to themselves, and therefore to whoever judges this, I believe--that it isn't Lolth the one they want to be tied to.

If anything, though, I'd believe that this kind of thing was left up in the air for people to decide. In the case of drow, though, since Ed said that a lot actually would want to accept Eilistraee's message, even when they find themselves powerless to do so, I'd say that Eilistraee has far more claim on those drow than Lolth has.

quote:
Those individuals who would normally be judged 'false' or 'faithless' though-I imagine they'd go to Lolth to decide whatever she wants to do with them instead of Kelemvor.


But who judges them as false or faithless, then? Because "would be judged" implies that someone recognizes them as false or faithless before Lolth gets them. It's not like the Realms have some built-in algorithm that judges people.

quote:

Well yes, you'll notice I used it in quotes. Not a personal moral judgement on those that fall under Lolth's jurisdiction, but an observation that Elves whose actions or attitudes cause the Seldarine to write them off leaves them open to be claimed by the Spider Queen. We know of at least one such instance where a surface elf who found himself falling under the Spider Queen's domain because he acted too much like one of hers.


Who was this elf? I only know of Kymil Nimesin, and he worked with Lolth. In this case too, I'm not sure where we read that Lolth gets to claim unclaimed evil elves.

quote:
At least in instances where she is better written, IMO the Spider Queen does come off as a bit more complex, and there are at least some ambiguous aspects to her fall that might evoke some empathy. I think that she does genuinely believe that what she subjects the drow to is for their own benefit (it isn't) as it turns them into a reflection of herself. In that way her religion is sorta set up as this perpetual loop to justify itself and her. As long as she's the foremost member of the Dark Seldarine, and as long as her worshippers thrive and conquer, she, her methods, and her actions can never be wrong in her eyes and she will never, ever self-question though.


Lolth has been expressely written as trying to keep the drow ignorant of their status and limited in their achievements since forever, though (since the 2e The Drow of the Underdark). Which is okay--not intersting IMO, but ok. My point was more that even the worst people out there believe to be doing something right, or to be morally entitled to be doing what they're doing (the vast majority of evil acts stems precisely from this motivation) which doesn't necessarily mean also benefitting for someone else, not even from their PoV. It's also why an external mind is required to judge if someone was evil or not.

The only instance in which she can comes off as somewhat sympathetic is in Elaine's Evermeet. "Lolth" and "complex" aren't words that mesh well together, tbh; she was written as a critter to be slain to begin with, and what followed just tried to justify how she became that, not to change it.

Edited by - Irennan on 09 Jan 2022 16:18:54
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LordofBones
Master of Realmslore

1426 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  14:14:23  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I mean, looking at it objectively, Lolth's most accomplished mortal servant isn't from Faerun. Eclavdra is Oeridian; I kind of see Lolth viewing her Faerunian servants as being from the planar equivalent of the boonies. Eilistraee and Vhaeraun are still essentially single-sphere powers.
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Zeromaru X
Great Reader

Colombia
2249 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  16:10:17  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

I brought this question up before, but I forgot the answer: wasn't one justification for the Wall of the Faithless that there are far worse things than even the Evil gods out in the multiverse, so reinforcing the faith is crucial for the defense of The Forgotten Realms?

...or something along those lines, anyhow.



The only explanation we have for the Wall of the Faithless is this:

quote:
Originally posted by James Lowder

there's a fundamental difference between recognizing that powers exist and deciding that they deserve your worship. The same with espousing faith and failing (even unintentionally) to live or honor that faith. Lots of room for people in the Realms who fall outside the myriad flocks of the faithful. (That's why I created the wall in the first place for Prince of Lies.)


Source:
https://m.facebook.com/groups/335373333286538/permalink/2079705012186686/

So, yes. The Wall exist because the author of the novel was extrapolating Christian/Monotheistic stuff into the Realms...

Instead of seeking change, you prefer a void, merciless abyss of a world...

Edited by - Zeromaru X on 09 Jan 2022 16:17:01
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  16:41:58  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I don't see that as an extrapolation of any monotheistic religion. Sure, it's a place of divine punishment, and it's easy to see that as a parallel for the Christian Hell... But the Wall was limited to a very specific type of offender; it's more a parallel of the Greek Tartarus, where the gods sent their enemies and those that had particularly pissed them off. And Tartarus most certainly doesn't come from a monotheistic religion.

I agree, though, that the Wall has always been problematic. I'm not sure I agree with handwaving it out of existence, though.

I would personally spin it as saying that initially the souls of the Faithless wandered about unclaimed. Jergal originally ignored them. When Myrkul came along, the place was starting to get crowded, with all of these souls aimlessly shuffling about and getting in the way of those who were waiting to be claimed. Myrkul decided to stick them all in one place, and built the Wall. Being an evil sort, he designed the Wall as a sort of eternal punishment. Cyric liked it, too, and left it in place. Kelemvor didn't like it, but it was the system that was in place and it worked, so he initially left it alone. Later, after some time in office, he decided it wasn't the best solution, and so he had it dismantled. So what happens to the souls of the Faithless? I'd say they get reformed as planar types that match their alignment, but that aren't divine servants.

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CorellonsDevout
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USA
2676 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  17:57:43  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
@Irennan: I am not sure about unclaimed elven souls, but Ed did say in a Tweet that most elven souls go to Arvandor, as the call is strong: https://twitter.com/TheEdVerse/status/1178691605093605376?t=wnNMpuSs8LW2AFhJ32_ljw&s=19

And don't quote me on this, but it does seem like most elven souls go directly to Arvandor, rather than the Fugue Plane (I remember a scene in Evermeet where a couple elves nearing the end of their lives felt the pull of Arvandor and just kind of...let their spirits go). I am not sure whether that is the norm, though.

(Sorry, on mobile, and I didn't want to try and quote your comment directly).

Sweet water and light laughter

Edited by - CorellonsDevout on 09 Jan 2022 17:59:10
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Zeromaru X
Great Reader

Colombia
2249 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  19:31:38  Show Profile Send Zeromaru X a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan


Setting aside MToF, do we have any source on this? I haven't read anything that states that the non-human deities are privileged in this regard (in FR), but maybe it's said in a book that I didn't read.



I don't remember exactly where I read that, but as CorellonsDevout mention, I've always read that elves go to Arvandor, even before the MotF. Likewise, dwarves go to whatever it is Moradin lived in 2e. The Fugue Plane was a retcon introduced in 3e

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I don't see that as an extrapolation of any monotheistic religion. Sure, it's a place of divine punishment, and it's easy to see that as a parallel for the Christian Hell... But the Wall was limited to a very specific type of offender; it's more a parallel of the Greek Tartarus, where the gods sent their enemies and those that had particularly pissed them off. And Tartarus most certainly doesn't come from a monotheistic religion.

I agree, though, that the Wall has always been problematic. I'm not sure I agree with handwaving it out of existence, though.



The Greek Tartarus was the prison of those who committed direct offenses against the gods, not a jail for the disbelievers.

Instead of seeking change, you prefer a void, merciless abyss of a world...
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3644 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  20:23:33  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by CorellonsDevout

@Irennan: I am not sure about unclaimed elven souls, but Ed did say in a Tweet that most elven souls go to Arvandor, as the call is strong: https://twitter.com/TheEdVerse/status/1178691605093605376?t=wnNMpuSs8LW2AFhJ32_ljw&s=19

And don't quote me on this, but it does seem like most elven souls go directly to Arvandor, rather than the Fugue Plane (I remember a scene in Evermeet where a couple elves nearing the end of their lives felt the pull of Arvandor and just kind of...let their spirits go). I am not sure whether that is the norm, though.

(Sorry, on mobile, and I didn't want to try and quote your comment directly).



Thanks for the link (also, dw, there's nothing to be sorry about). That quote leaves me confused tbh, because on one hand it seems that elves automatically go to Arvandor, but on the other hand, if Ed talks about "pull", then it implies a judgement with the Arvandor option holding a lot of weight. The spirit thing is also elf-only, I believe, which leaves other races up in the air.

Edited by - Irennan on 09 Jan 2022 20:26:14
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CorellonsDevout
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USA
2676 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  20:49:34  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I interpret "pull" similar to a "calling", like they're being led somewhere (in this case Arvandor).

Sweet water and light laughter
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TKU
Learned Scribe

USA
118 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  21:45:13  Show Profile Send TKU a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan
*snip*


You'd still be stuck with getting stuck on the Fugue plane without having a deity willing to claim you. At some level, you are going to be 'judged' by one or more deities with possible repercussions regardless.

Yes, the Seldarine are entitled to elven souls (though if you worship a god outside the Seldarine or lose your soul to a devil/demon etc obviously those are exceptions)

CorellonsDevout mentions the pull of Arvandor-elves who give in to that yearning, their souls depart and their bodies just die. This is mentioned as happening to one of the Elven Princes. Demihuman Deities mentions this as well more in depth.

But yeah. Elves when alive fall under Corellon's Jurisdiction, and when dead Moonbow's. So Lolth's influence over Kymil indicates that the Seldarine had washed their hands of him.

So the Elven souls don't seem to be in the same 'system' as human souls in Faerun generally are. Drow souls seem to be exempt from being drawn passively to Arvandor, but I don't think it's a matter of 'only drow elven souls go to the fugue plane' Lolth has set up her own little Pantheon and her 'Arvandor' in the Abyss, and as per Ed, she (and Eilistraee IIRC) are involved in reincarnating drow souls. I think there's enough to extrapolate that there's a parallel system to the one the Seldarine use.

quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

I mean, looking at it objectively, Lolth's most accomplished mortal servant isn't from Faerun. Eclavdra is Oeridian; I kind of see Lolth viewing her Faerunian servants as being from the planar equivalent of the boonies. Eilistraee and Vhaeraun are still essentially single-sphere powers.

The Demonweb pits have portals to tons of places, and the Dark Seldarine have access to all of the places Lolth does through them. Kiaransale apparently helped Lolth conquer the material plane world of Guldor, for instance. It's entirely possible (almost certain, I'd go as far as) that Vhaeraun and Eilistraee have presences on many of those worlds. They could very well be on Caer Sidi, the Spiral Desert, Truegard, Red Forest etc, we just don't get a good long look into those locales.

quote:
Originally posted by Irennan
Thanks for the link (also, dw, there's nothing to be sorry about). That quote leaves me confused tbh, because on one hand it seems that elves automatically go to Arvandor, but on the other hand, if Ed talks about "pull", then it implies a judgement with the Arvandor option holding a lot of weight. The spirit thing is also elf-only, I believe, which leaves other races up in the air.



I believe it's been stated that if a human were to worship one or more of the Elven deities, their soul would also go to Arvandor in one of the 3rd edition FR sourcebooks, and presumably transform into an elven spirit (since elven and non elven petitioners are indistinguishable in Arvandor)

Edited by - TKU on 09 Jan 2022 21:50:55
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Azar
Senior Scribe

764 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  23:23:47  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TKU

I believe it's been stated that if a human were to worship one or more of the Elven deities, their soul would also go to Arvandor in one of the 3rd edition FR sourcebooks, and presumably transform into an elven spirit (since elven and non elven petitioners are indistinguishable in Arvandor)


That's touching. I wonder if Jander Sunstar would have passed on to Elysium (Lathander's realm) had he not become a vampire...or even despite his vampiric status.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.

Earth names in the Realms are more common than you may think.
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TKU
Learned Scribe

USA
118 Posts

Posted - 09 Jan 2022 :  23:50:51  Show Profile Send TKU a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Azar

quote:
Originally posted by TKU

I believe it's been stated that if a human were to worship one or more of the Elven deities, their soul would also go to Arvandor in one of the 3rd edition FR sourcebooks, and presumably transform into an elven spirit (since elven and non elven petitioners are indistinguishable in Arvandor)


That's touching. I wonder if Jander Sunstar would have passed on to Elysium (Lathander's realm) had he not become a vampire...or even despite his vampiric status.

It did work that way IIRC. If an elf worshipped Lanthander, their ultimate destination wouldn't be Arvandor, they'd go to Elysium. Although the exact mechanics of that like much of this afterlife stuff being discussed I think could be speculated on-Does Moonbow direct their soul to the Fugue plane, or straight to Elysium? Does the soul stay in Arvandor for a while before a representative from Lanthander files the necessary paperwork? Things get a bit messy when you are talking about crossing over the various afterlife systems.

Edited by - TKU on 09 Jan 2022 23:51:26
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
3644 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  00:13:03  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
@TKU

Thanks for the sources. I'll go reread them, then return to this thread.

@CorellonsDevout

quote:
I interpret "pull" similar to a "calling", like they're being led somewhere (in this case Arvandor).


Ok, but consider this: the elf in the question worshipped Silvanus, and Ed said that there was a pull to Arvandor. This means that the elf is contended by the Seldarine and Silvanus. Since a soul can go to the realm of a deity from the Faerunian Pantheon only through Kel (AFAIK), there should be some kind of judgment involved. This is why I found that quote to be confusing--even if we assume that Arvandor has a system of its own, Silvanus doesn't, which means that a soul should be judged according to 2 systems at the same time, which means that it might be judged according to set of criteria that are incompatible with each other. That's confusing.

Edited by - Irennan on 10 Jan 2022 01:20:14
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CorellonsDevout
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USA
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  00:51:32  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Mmm, well, if we go by that Tweet thread, Ed also said that most souls go to Arvandor, regardless of who they venerated in life. So for an elven soul/spirit to go Silvanus (for example), I imagine they would have to be extremely devout to him in order to not go to Arvandor.

I do remember reading in Player's Guide to Faerun that all petitioners in Arvandor look like elves, just as all petitioners in Dwarfhome take on the form of dwarves, even if they weren't dwarves in life.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

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35998 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  02:13:33  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Zeromaru X


The Greek Tartarus was the prison of those who committed direct offenses against the gods, not a jail for the disbelievers.



Would you not say that in a world where proof of the gods is tangible that disbelief would be an offense against the gods? Especially since their power comes from belief?

And either way, it's still a closer fit than the Christian Hell. In the Realms, a person can be good and kind, never causing harm to another, and if they're Faithless, into the Wall they go.

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TKU
Learned Scribe

USA
118 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  02:29:20  Show Profile Send TKU a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan
@CorellonsDevout

quote:
I interpret "pull" similar to a "calling", like they're being led somewhere (in this case Arvandor).


Ok, but consider this: the elf in the question worshipped Silvanus, and Ed said that there was a pull to Arvandor. This means that the elf is contended by the Seldarine and Silvanus. Since a soul can go to the realm of a deity from the Faerunian Pantheon only through Kel (AFAIK), there should be some kind of judgment involved. This is why I found that quote to be confusing--even if we assume that Arvandor has a system of its own, Silvanus doesn't, which means that a soul should be judged according to 2 systems at the same time, which means that it might be judged according to set of criteria that are incompatible with each other. That's confusing.


I think in this situation they wouldn't be judged by two systems simultaneously, but that one would have priority over the other. The Fugue plane seems to be pretty low on the list, with Kelemvor's court at the very bottom, since the gods seem to want to avoid 'unclaimed' souls a great deal. The multiplanar/racial pantheons seem to have a higher priority that you'd be sorted through first. So if anything it would be sequentially, and only if the higher priority afterlife rejected you.

We already kidna see this with fiends. If you sign a pact with a devil (either in life, or on the fugue plane) you aren't even getting a chance to see Arvandor/Kelemvor/etc.

quote:
Originally posted by CorellonsDevout
I do remember reading in Player's Guide to Faerun that all petitioners in Arvandor look like elves, just as all petitioners in Dwarfhome take on the form of dwarves, even if they weren't dwarves in life.


Thank you, that's the one. I don't have a lot of my old sourcebook collection anymore, so tracking down specific information to verify things I read (or think I read) can be a real pain.

Edited by - TKU on 10 Jan 2022 02:32:31
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Azar
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764 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  03:13:30  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Would you not say that in a world where proof of the gods is tangible that disbelief would be an offense against the gods? Especially since their power comes from belief?


Problematically, this way of thinking (essentially, "You are either with me or against me.") is fitting for the Evil gods and even some of the harsher Neutral types, but it seems wrong for any god that ostensibly is aligned with Good. Then again, if there were some overriding concern - such as the suggested cosmic threats - then maybe there could be some justification.

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.

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TKU
Learned Scribe

USA
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  04:02:15  Show Profile Send TKU a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well the overriding concern with the cosmic threats (faithless souls being stolen by demons for use in the blood war, gods losing power from mortals turning from them) were there, which I think 'helped' keep it in place even though Kelemvor didn't want it, and presumably the good gods as well. In Neverwinter Nights 2 IIRC it was revealed that it was a sort of gambit backup plan to keep the dread of Myrkul alive in mortals in case he died so he'd have a basis to potentially come back. Now in the game Kelemvor refuses to let the wall be destroyed, but it's possible that in light of that revelation (that the Wall of the Faithless, possibly the single biggest cosmic injustice was a scam so Myrkul could have insurance in case he died) there might have been a bit of a change in the support for the Wall. Even among the less....morally-inclined gods who might be willing to let mortals pay the price if it got them what they want I am sure there were those who wouldn't like the idea that they were giving a rival or enemy (and I'm sure Myrkul had many) a route to come back.

Perhaps that's the reason why the wall is no more? (better reason than the one WoTC has given so far at least IMO-which is to just pretend it never existed)
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CorellonsDevout
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  04:28:44  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ed has also said that ending up on the Wall is a rare occurence, and is more of a bogeyman (though real) than a common fate. Yes, it is a wall, which means enough souls have gone in to making it to make it a wall, but this has likely been over great swaths of time.

I am not justifying the Wall (I too am glad it is gone, though I also would have preferred an in-uninverse explanation, and what happens instead, rather than just an errata), I am just noting it probably isn't a common fate, especially with Kelemvor as judge.

Sweet water and light laughter
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Scots Dragon
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  13:51:11  Show Profile Send Scots Dragon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
I am not justifying the Wall (I too am glad it is gone, though I also would have preferred an in-uninverse explanation, and what happens instead, rather than just an errata),


The errata in question was added in 2017. It's not even part of the new round of changes.
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Scots Dragon
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United Kingdom
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  14:03:49  Show Profile Send Scots Dragon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Zeromaru X

The Greek Tartarus was the prison of those who committed direct offenses against the gods, not a jail for the disbelievers.



On that note the fact that there's already five different flavours of hell including the aforementioned Tartarus with a couple extra kinda sucky places, makes me think that the Wall of the Faithless is pretty redundant in the face of those. What sin is covered by being False or Faithless in an evil manner that is not given sufficiently punitive consequences by those?

Is being Faithless and less religious such a sin that a good person couldn't wind up in one of the positive afterlives simply because they didn't sufficiently pay service to a specific deity?
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deserk
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Norway
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  14:21:29  Show Profile Send deserk a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As an atheist, I don't remotely have a problem with the Wall of the Faithless, and I think to ret-con it is incredibly cheap. Being a Faithless in a world like the Forgotten Realms is pretty idiotic, especially since there are a vast array of gods for just about anyone to align with, not to mention most gods are not that demanding in terms of what qualifies as worship. And based on what Ed has said on the Wall, it doesn't seem like it has been ret-conned out of existence, merely that it doesn't function exactly how the books have told us.

In my experience, players who choose to play Faithless do so often do so as an excuse to not bother to learn about the setting and it's gods, and not to mention inserting the talking points of RW atheism, which is pretty dumb in a world where the gods are as real as the natural world.
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CorellonsDevout
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  22:16:42  Show Profile Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
@Derserk, that is a very good point, and I agree. I just haven't been a big fan of the Wall. But I do agree with you.

@Scots Dragon: I thought the errata was 2021, or 2020 at most, as that's when it was all over the internet. What changes have since been made?

Sweet water and light laughter

Edited by - CorellonsDevout on 10 Jan 2022 22:21:15
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HighOne
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172 Posts

Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  22:53:32  Show Profile Send HighOne a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by CorellonsDevout

Ed has also said that ending up on the Wall is a rare occurence, and is more of a bogeyman (though real) than a common fate. Yes, it is a wall, which means enough souls have gone in to making it to make it a wall, but this has likely been over great swaths of time.
That's how I've always thought of it. In a world where the gods are manifestly real, the number of truly "faithless" people is going to be exceedingly slim. I also see the wall as a punishment reserved for those who are exceptional in their faithlessness -- in other words, people who made an active, lifelong decision to reject the gods, not your ordinary farmers and fishwives who fell short in their devoutness.
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Azar
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Posted - 10 Jan 2022 :  23:15:22  Show Profile Send Azar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In this case, it is important to define the distinction between "belief" and "faith".

"Yes, I believe those entities exist, but I don't have much faith in the likelihood of them showing up to fix so-and-so problem."

Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong.

Earth names in the Realms are more common than you may think.
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Delnyn
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USA
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Posted - 11 Jan 2022 :  00:47:02  Show Profile Send Delnyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would like to tweak Azar's distinction between belief and faith to a distinction between skepticism and rejection. Maybe we could replace the word "atheism" with "misotheism". Consider the souls of ur-priests or active members in the Athar. These people actively oppose and shun the gods, regardless of portfolios and alignment. They go out of their way to screw with priesthoods. These souls would be the most likely candidates for the Wall.

The following is homebrew FR and not canon: I incorporated the Guide to Hell lore about Ahriman and Jazirian in my FR campaign. Jazirian no longer has a Realms presence. There goes the main check on Ahriman. The Wall is quite bluntly a scorched earth measure the pantheon accepted as a secondary measure without Jazirian. The Wall denies these Faithless souls to Ahriman. He is stuck in the bottom of Nessus, which suits the pantheon just fine.

All this said, the Wall does not really come into play in my FR campaigns at all. Its departure would not be missed.
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HighOne
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172 Posts

Posted - 11 Jan 2022 :  01:21:41  Show Profile Send HighOne a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Delnyn

I would like to tweak Azar's distinction between belief and faith to a distinction between skepticism and rejection. Maybe we could replace the word "atheism" with "misotheism".
Yes, "misotheism" would probably be a better way of thinking of it, especially since I have a hard time imagining atheism even existing in the Realms. Not only are the gods manifestly real, but I imagine the proactive, good-aligned gods would do everything they could to spread ample evidence of their own existence, even if it means visiting someone in person. After all, what would be a better use of their powers than saving someone from a horrible fate?

Edited by - HighOne on 11 Jan 2022 01:42:35
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HighOne
Learned Scribe

172 Posts

Posted - 11 Jan 2022 :  01:31:45  Show Profile Send HighOne a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh, and in my own head-canon, the Wall is just a construct meant to scare people. There might be a few souls sent there for temporary punishment, but no one spends all eternity there. The concept of eternal punishment just doesn't really resonate with me. I prefer hope and redemption.
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