Quick Scroll: Symbol Worship Advocates Deity Plane
NG Greater Deity
Favored Weapon: club
Domains: Earth, Good, Healing, Luck, Protection
Tenets: Fluidity, Impartial, Introspective, Methodical, Observant, Patience, Peace, Privacy, Slothfulness, Time
The holy symbol of Baris is simply a large, grey moonstone hung from a necklace. The necklace’s quality and type of metal is of no significance. Though, the symbol must be attuned to Baris. He does that himself. Once the moonstone is touched by Baris, a picturesque vision of a turtle, a heron, or an alligator forms and reforms on the surface of the moonstone. The animal is Baris’s vision for his advocate’s future.
A turtle normally signifies someone who is rooted in a community, willing to stay and endure the hardships of such a choice. A heron denotes a person more willing to move about, a free spirit. Someone who will take Baris’s word to new areas and spread his kindness. And there is the alligator, which is the rarest of the three. In fact, there has not been a alligator in over 150 years. The alligator is the animal that portrays the inner strength of Baris. These people are destined to be great leaders because they hold the potential for great patience and strength.
Worship of Baris is relatively common as everyone is welcome in the Church of the Gentle Hand. A soothing name for the structures his people build, yet the churches are not actually churches in the sense of the word, rather they are monasteries. These buildings are normally set in obscure, remote locations that are difficult to reach. The reason for such locations is two-fold. First, the leaders of the Barian religion believe that one must endure hardship and difficulty as a follower of Baris. If you are unwilling to put forth the effort to locate and venture to a fingerprint of Baris, then you are not ready to fully accept him. One must come to understand patience.
The second purpose is for protection. The believers of Baris do not engage in combat unless it is absolutely necessary. It is easier to avoid conflict. And they do so by hiding their religious structures from the common person. These solitary buildings are where the monks of the Barian religion spend their time contemplating all manner of the world. They do this in peace before they head out into the Darkened Ocean of Prosperity.
Once outside of the monasteries, the monks find groups of like-minded people. Communities erupt around a single monk and peace prospers. Daily rituals and prayers are common but the followers do not congregate at a central location to pray, rather they do these things in the privacy of their own homes, learning how to tolerate those that exist around them. Peace exists while there is no resistance to their beliefs. It is when opposition presents itself that things turn grey.
In most cases, monks and the communities that surround them try to work things out with words and gestures of kindness. But violence comes swift to others and with it exploitation and eventually annihilation or those that follow Baris. Yet it is in the few cases where monks understand that peace can only be kept through occasional violence that Barian communities pull through. These monks tend to show great organizational skills. And with their intimate knowledge of their people, they are able to fend off would be ravagers.
Finally, conversion is important to Baris. So once his monk sects have settled and are comfortable, he asks them to reach out to others. He has let these followers know that using a hammer on clay is not as effective as using your hands. His followers have taken his word to heart and now believe that their purpose in life is to shape the world into a peaceful paradise that all can enjoy. But forcing people into that world will never work, so they spend their time molding those that are filled with the most “water”. The more fluid people converted means the more chances that their water dampens others – a saturation of sorts.
Advocates, Direct Followers, and Minions
rare: arden, human, kobold
Baris is a careful, methodical thinker. He tends to listen more than he speaks. He truly respects other people’s opinion and uses their thoughts even if he does not initially believe or even like what they have to say. He understands that others have differing opinions and that his opinion may not be the most appropriate.
This type of thinking allows him to get along with many other beings, including some daeva. Unfortunately, not everyone sees Baris as a part of their team. Vazuet got to where he is by improvisation and taking action. He thinks that Baris takes too much time to make decisions and that in the most recent past his inaction has caused larger issues to evolve. Baris understands Vazuet‘s frustrations and tries his best to listen to the excitable youth. But in the end, Baris tends to value Vazuet’s opinions with less weight.
Baris is a huge believer in self-examination. And he is currently using this tool to evaluate his reactions towards Vazuet. In time, he will likely realize that Vazuet is still a young deity, but has great potential to benefit all people. He did, afterall, sacrifice himself for the survival of the humanoid race on Thepa.
Aside from Vazuet, there are no real issues between Baris and other elohim, so Baris takes part in all heavenly conversations. He does not do much of the talking though. He prefers to listen. But when he does choose to voice a thought, his soothing words are calm and never rushed, even quiet, and all the while exhibiting a distinct sense of strength. Each word is chosen with precision, specifically designed to interact deeply with his intended target.
Baris does spend a lot of his time in the heavens, but he does not neglect Thepa. He prefers to give his advocates tools and visions to further his cause. Baris always treats his followers with great patience. He knows that they need time to learn and that many times, one lifetime is not enough to learn a lesson. It is one of the reasons he keeps his trinket handy.
The hourglass he carries with him is a constant reminder that he has time to think and that others need it as well. The hourglass never completely empties. If you look at the bottom side, it appears to fill. If you look at the top side, it appears to empty. Nothing in existence can turn Baris’s hourglass upside down aside from Baris himself. It is actually part of him. He ripped it from his soul upon his ascension. This common fact is another thing that demands respect from the other leaders of both the heavens and the hells. Baris is willing to maim himself.
First Artwork provided by Sandara
Second Artwork provided by Joseph Garcia
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