Lathander

From AmiaWiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Lathander

Error creating thumbnail: Unable to save thumbnail to destination
Title(s) The Morninglord
Power Level Greater Deity
Subservient Deities
Symbol(s) Sunrise made of rose, red, and yellow gems
Home Plane House of Nature
Alignment Neutral Good
Portfolio Athletics
Birth
Creativity
Dawn
Renewal
Self-perfection
Spring
Vitality
Youth
Worshipers Aristocrats, Artists, Athletes, Merchants, Monks (Sun Soul), The Young
Domains Good, Nobility, Protection, Renewal, Strength, Sun
Favored Weapon {{{favored_weapon}}}
Superior
Primary Allies
Primary Foes

Cleric Alignments

LG NG CG
LN TN CN
LE NE CE
Amia Domains Good Nobility Protection Renewal Strength Sun [1]
Lathander (lah-than-der) is a powerful, exuberant deity who is popular among commoners, nobles, merchants, and the young. Although occasionally given to excess, abundant enthusiasm, and vanity, he is an optimistic and perseverant deity who blesses new ventures and destroys undead with his mace Dawnspeaker. Lathander is a vibrant power that enjoys doing physical things for the sake of doing them.

Whenever humans embark on a new journey, enter a contract, or start a political or romantic relationship, chances are good that they whisper a prayer to Lathander, deity of dawn, renewal, and vitality. Though he is among the oldest of the Faerûnian pantheon, the Morninglord nonetheless retains the cheery optimism of youth that makes him the perfect symbol of beginnings. Ever willing to pass over the defeats of today to focus on the victories of tomorrow, Lathander preaches a doctrine of proactive good works and constant reevaluation of society's traditions and mores. He also urges the destruction of undead, which he views as vile corruption that mocks creation and true life.

Critics suggest that Lathander's aggressive altruism often gets in the way of his good sense. His vanity and enthusiasm cause him to discount the consequences of his actions. He simply hopes for the best and attacks a problem head on, regardless of the ramifications. Never was this character flaw so clearly illuminated than during the Dawn Cataclysm, a catastrophe second only to the Time of Troubles, in which Lathander attempted to reshape the entire pantheon in his own image and thereby triggered a major divine struggle. His ultimate failure resulted in the destruction of several deities and powerful outsiders, led to the collapse of a half-dozen theocracies, and presaged the fall of Myth Drannor.

Despite the failure of the distant past, Lathander's faith remains extremely popular and powerful today, especially among idealistic young nobles (though seldom their parents). They claim to be personally tasked by the Morninglord to see to the affairs of their lessers, as though their fortuitous accident of noble birth granted them a writ to serve as Lathander's mortal representatives. For many young aristocrats, a foray into Lathanderism represents a last act of rebellion before accepting the responsibilities of the nobility. Those of truer heart, however, remain in the church and often end up making a profound difference in their community. Commoners appreciate such treatment, making the Morninglord popular among all social classes.

Clerics of Lathander pray at dawn. Most holy services take place just as the light of the sun breaks the horizon, with secondary gatherings occurring at highsun and sunset. Ceremonies are joyful but dignified and feature singing, offerings, and ritual drinking of well water touched by the light of dawn. On midsummer morning and on the morning of the vernal and autumnal equinoxes, Lathanderian clerics perform the Son of the Dawn, a popular and complex musical ceremony that attracts even nonworshipers to the Morninglord's cathedrals. Lawful clerics often multiclass as paladins.

History/Relationships

Lathander's friendly demeanor makes him almost as popular among other deities as he is among the mortals of Toril. The deities, however, tend to have longer memories then their followers; many appreciate Lathander's calls to action and altruistic rants but try to keep him from doing too much damage to the status quo. He gets on well with other idealistic deities such as Eldath and Llura, or with those, such as Lurue and Siamorphe, who prefer to focus on the pleasurable and good things in life. The Morninglord's command over creativity brings him into friendly contact with Oghma, Milil, and Gond, and his unflinching hatred of the undead has made him a fast ally of Kelemvor. Chauntea seems to appreciate his exuberance more than any other member of the Faerûnian pantheon, perhaps because it brightens her ancient soul. She and Lathander believe that their fates are intertwined, and while their romance has faded and flared intermittently over the centuries, they always seem to return to each other.

Lathander somewhat naively holds evil deities such as Bane, Cyric, Loviatar, and Talos personally responsible for the majority of Toril's ills. He particularly dislikes Shar, whom he views as an eternally corrupting force, the foul cancer at the heart of every shadowy intrigue against him and his church. Lathander believes that the Dawn Cataclysm occurred because spies of the Lady of Loss secretly corrupted his efforts, and he is hatching plans to ensure that does not happen again. Helm harbors ill feeling toward the Morninglord that date back to the Dawn Cataclysm, when Lathander indirectly caused the destruction of Helm's lover Murdane, a lesser deity of reason and pragmatism. No doubt the Vigilant One would be chagrined to learn that Lathander has, since the Time of Troubles, been working on some of the incantations and machinations that brought about that catastrophe so long ago. Oghma, Chauntea, and Lliira know of Lathander's plans, but so far, each has remained silent. With the return of Bane, many progressive deities believe that direct action must be taken to destroy evil once and for all, and that no unintended consequences of Lathander's plans could be as threatening to the world as simply standing by and doing nothing.

Clergy and Temples

Clerics of Lathander tend to be ebullient utopists, "morning people" in every sense of the phrase. They encourage social, cultural, and political progress as agents of personal liberty, artistic expression, and racial harmony. Lathander's clerics sponsor athletic and artistic competitions to showcase the talents of the community, and they often finance the recovery of lost treasures or important symbols to give the people hope and encourage further good works. The tenets of Lathanderism urge respect toward one's fellows and the natural world and intolerance for evil or those who unwittingly aid evil through slothful inaction. Militant followers stand at the vanguard of efforts to clear civilized lands of harmful beasts or purge the taint of the undead from the world.

Powerful members of the church protect their communities from malign extraplanar interests by acting as exorcists or fiendslayers. The church recognizes no central authority; the head of each temple is afforded similar respect by followers everywhere. Clerics refer to one another as Dawnbringers.

The ostentatious cathedrals of Lathander, with their abundant statuary and gaudy stained-glass windows, reflect the order's great wealth. All temples include a mass hall that faces eastward, allowing the congregation to watch the first rays of the rising sun. In crowded or walled cities, temples are built for height, with ceremonies held on the third or even fourth floor of the structure. When such construction is impossible, a complex series of mirrors channels the sun's rays. Lathanderan architecture is dominated by elaborate fountains that often spill into shallow moats of holy water winding throughout the temple complex.

Within the last year, Lathander's most trusted servants have received word of their deity's secret plan. Dawnbringers refer to a mysterious event known as the Deliverance, which will have important consequences for the world, especially for those who are antithetical to Lathanderian beliefs. No mortals know the details of the Deliverance, but the prospect of the Morninglord taking a more active role in the affairs of Toril fills his already excitable worshipers with an almost unsettling glee. They have initiated an aggresive proselytizing effort to encourage others to join their church before it is too late.

Dogma

Strive always to aid, to foster new hope, new ideas, and new prosperity for all humankind and its allies. It is a sacred duty to foster new growth, nurture growing things, and work for rebirth and renewal. Perfect yourself, and be fertile in the mind and body. Wherever you go, plant seeds of hope, new ideas, and plans for a rosy future in the minds of all. Watch each sunrise. Consider the consequences of your actions so that your least effort may bring the greatest and best reward. Avoid negativity, for from death comes life, and there is always another morning to turn a setback into a success. Place more importance in activities that help others than on strict adherence to rules, rituals, and the dictates of your seniors.