I am working on some ideas for a tale, and could use your input, please.
Why would someone want to worhip a god (or goddess) of evil or darkness? What benefits could such a god offer? Worldly power while alive, I suppose, but what about in an afterlife? If he or she is all about pain and torment, what punishments would be handed out? A nice day at the beach? :rolleyes:
At least some of the priests need to leave an impression of something many days dead, foulness, and/or corruption.
I have not decided yet, and it will make a difference, I know, whether this god will be active and "real" , or just a chunk of stone the priests want you to bow to.
Thanks for your help !
August 23rd, 2005, 07:49 PM
If you're writing a story and the idea of an afterlife clashes with the idea of having people worship dark gods for worldly power, why include an afterlife?
I'm guessing this would be better suited to the writing forum though...
August 23rd, 2005, 07:54 PM
I think you should post this in the writing forum. You will probably get a better response there.
Well, as you can see, I moved it for you. :)
August 23rd, 2005, 09:31 PM
I guess most people could worship the evil deity out of fear. If they fail to offer the proper sacrifices or perform the proper rituals, they know they'll suffer for it.
August 23rd, 2005, 10:09 PM
Perhaps they worship evil for the dominance they are granted in return. Dominance / power over the normal populace. Or wealth, which equates to power anyway.
Or so many virgins.
A degree of immortality.
An afterlife of dispensing agony instead of receiving it.
August 24th, 2005, 01:18 AM
Power - or even the suggestion of power. Forbidden knowledge. Secrets. A fondness for black.
Some would say that evil is all in how you look at it. Maybe this god is misunderstood. Maybe this god got bad press by the other gods or jealous priests.
Or maybe there's a story about eternal life. If you're desperate enough, wouldn't you do almost anything for it? Only what does eternal life mean? Freedom from death - or an eternity trapped in a private hell for one?
What if your god of darkness is actually a god of justice? Weighing all the sins in a lifetime, setting traps for the unwary.
August 24th, 2005, 02:00 AM
Maybe there aren't any other suitable gods around to be worshipped. Maybe this is who everyone else is worshipping, and if you don't the crops might fail. Or, in true form for an unnervingly large number of religions, this is the path to power and influence and being considered important by those "pretty little minions".
August 24th, 2005, 04:34 AM
Dark sects such as satanism often reflect man's desire to break from the supposedly unnatrual shackles of morality and organised religeous dogma. This translates into dominance over others, for without restraint through empathy, it becomes easier to assert power over those restrained by moral fortitude. This is often accomapnied by dark rites which supposedly encourage more power, wealth etc. to those who perform them. Hatred, envy, lust, manipulation thrive in this environment (which may well be its downfall) however, it is not true to say that it is inherently immoral. See here:
Although I certainly don't subscribe to the power hungry propaganda promoted by Levay and his yobs, there is an element of common sense here (eg. vital existence, instead of spiritual pipe dreams). Unfortunately, like the Nazis, common sense can be subverted to very unpleasant causes.
So I think the motivation for worshipping a dark or "evil" god would be fuelled by a rebellious nature, indulgence and anger/indignation. I don't know a lot about the theology of this lot, but I don't think they subscribe to an afterlife and presumably they all don't intend to wind up in hell...? I suppose, if you achieve all your carnal pleasures on earth, what's the need for Paradise. Maybe they expect their satanic rites to extend their lives.
August 24th, 2005, 05:54 AM
Why not the offer of immortality? Fanaticism of belief would prevent them from accepting a final death, or something along the lines that they will be resurrected when their god/deity walks the Earth.
August 24th, 2005, 06:34 AM
Actually, if you're supposed to worship a God of Pain, then pain would be the reward. It would be masochist religion. Perhaps, it's a reversal of the fear of pain? Those who try to avoid it are seen as unenlightened? You'd hurt yourself in rituals, as practise for life.
Practical justification: Pain can't be avoided, so it has to be embraced. You have to come to an understanding of pain, so it fear of it won't inhibit you in life.
Elitism: Pain is unpleasant, because it's a test. Not everybody can step over the threshhold. The weak will be left behind.
Ideological justification: Pain is life, and life is pain. When you crawled out of your mother's womb, it hurt her, and in turn the expulsion into a bright, cold world hurt you. Pain is very often an ingredient to pleasure (sex, eating spicy foods...). Only the unlightened try to avoid it. To avoid pain is to avoid life.
Punishment: A religion based on pain would be fast, fierce, passionate. So punishment would entail the inhibition of action: imprisonment, buried alive, inducing coma, slow withering death ("go out with a whimper, not with a bang"). Anything that's an attribute of the unenlightened.
Note that "pain-treatment" might make a good punishment for traitors/unbelievers, as the punishment bears an inherent chance at repentence/conversion (pain is only a punishment for the heretic).