Re: The Glorantha Digest V8 #311

Date: Sun, 18 Mar 2001 15:29:46 -0600 (CST)

Peter Metcalfe instructs

> >PL> >Orlanth himself is a mixture -- he is a god who knows some dragon
> > > magic,
> > > He is a god who fights dragons. The only time he was their friend
> > > was when he was beguiled.
> >Surely he gained some dragon knowledge then?
> Knowing Orlanthi, he would have forgotten it.
> _I_ say it was Orlanth [that broke the dance], because
> he loves trouble, and could not bear to understand the
> draconic way by his very nature.
> KoS p191.

I suppose if a god can "learn" new things by heroquesting, it can "forget" them, too.  

> >The cult of Orlanth Dragonfriend still exists, at least in
> >theory, right?
> There are no practitioners of it and AFAIK worship of it
> is impossible since Alakoring freed Orlanth from Arangorf.

So the EWF wasn't just destroyed and "erased," but it actually became impossible for people to follow its paths and use its magics? Would it be possible for humans to learn Auld Wyrmish in 1625 or has that ability gone out of the world (barring, of couse, some heroquest or other)?  

> > > Kolat may rule over spirits but Orlanth does not.
> >Orlanth rules over Kolat, doesn't he?
> Direct rule over spirits is still alien to him.

Maybe it's better to say that, like a tula and a clan, the Storm Tribe contains daimons and gods (theists) and spirits (animists). From far away, you can only see the clan; close up, its separate natures are visible. Although it seems odd that a god that accepts no outside restrictions on his behavior would allow a thing like "world views" to limit his explorations. Although, as he "discarded" draconic knowledge, I suppose Orlanth could have lost, forgotten, or given away any other (mystic, animist, sorcerous) knowledge he learned.

Which brings me to: I assume that mysticism isn't much known amoung the Orlanthi. Tarumath is a mystic path, I think; it there any information on this?

> But some parts are more prominent than others, both from the
> worshippers
> PoV and from the cosmological PoV. Saying that the Goddess is a
> theistic deity with a transcendent self is more accurate than saying
> the Goddess is everything.

Agreed, some parts (like Theism) are more prominent. For purposes of explaining that essay and how it would apply to Gloranthan culture, however, I can't think of a better way. Can you? Besides, I suspect that no one outside the Lunar Way (and precious few inside) really understand how the Goddess "works." She satisfies their needs, whether for a Mother, a Ruler, a Trancendental Flame, or an Enemy; that's as much as they need to know. A syncratic understanding of all her parts is probably part of learning the Great Goddess's Secret. Unfortunately, it leaves the student with little capacity to pass on this understanding to others or use it in any external way. It's no doubt very liberating, though, if it doesn't liberate you from all consciousness. The Goddess Smashes All Boundries! That's what the Storm Tribe hates -- and they call themselves free....

Peter Larsen

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