The Faceless God
The faceless god is the god of creation and destruction. All things are born of her and all things come home to her. She is the one who eventually will destroy all so that it can be reborn and the great cycle can repeat.
There are many faces of the god to worship; a mantra for every aspect of life. Part of being a worshiper is to know your place in the cycle and be humble enough to accept it. It is recognized that for some finding their role and is more difficult than others.
Worship is dominated by finding harmony within the cycle. Meditation, chants, and prayers that are supposed to bring one more in line with one’s center dominate the normal worship. It is said While there is no set days or times, at least weekly attendance at the temple is expected with the most devout (and usually well off) going daily.
The true name of the Faceless God is not known to any but the true people of Shal’d. Her true name is never written down or told to an outsider, lest terrible misfortune befall all of Shal’d. Even the god’s holy symbol is never shown to outsiders; instead a blank teardrop is the most common form of the holy symbol with the true symbol somehow worked within it. While many have tried to take apart these holy symbols, no one has figured out how the true symbol is worked into them. This has led to the nickname of the crying god.
While the order has both men and women in religious positions, there have only ever been a few men who have become high priests. Most of the elves that remain in the city are part of the order.Alignment: None. Unlike many of the western god’s the question isn’t between good or evil, but in knowing one’s place in life. Rebellion against this proper order is the gravest of sins.
The Cast System:
People are expected to socialize primarily within their own cast. They have the freedom to socialize down, but generally that is only accepted within a family. Marriage is always within your own cast, and inter cast relations are banned. Children will have a separate cast from their parents determined by the cast which their parents have.
Generally speaking more weight is given to those are special than the artisans. The artisans are given more weight than the laborers, and the laborers more weight than the Luma cast. While these are held to pretty strictly, there are always those who buck those. While there are no laws in Shal’d that require they follow the cast system, there are
Luma Cast: These are the people who handle the dead and waste materials. They are the ones required to keep the society clean. The work is hard and the life expectancy is short. The Luma tend to be treated poorly by others unless they are related. The children of the Luma are Artisans.
Laborers: The laborers are those who bring the difficult and relatively unskilled labor to bear. They are often city guards, long shore men, helpers for artisans (such as wagon drivers). Their children are Luma.
Artisans: The brick layers, smiths, ship wrights, bakers, tailors, farmers, merchants, and etc. These are the skilled labor and they apprentice the children of the Luma. Their children are Laborers.
Special: Sometimes the faceless god shines down upon someone and gives them special gifts. These people are given roles according to their abilities and are recognized by the order at their adulthood ceremony.
The special roles include things like artists, musicians, story tellers, teachers, priests and priestesses, and leaders. There is suspicion amongst some that these roles are not handled out by divine inspiration, but by power and influence. In truth both are probably true.
Gender: The society is primarily matriarchal, with preference towards women in most situations. This stems from the belief there is something holy about the ability to bring life into this world. Women represent renewal and change. However, cast preferences are stronger than gender preferences.