We’re nearing the end of the #My30DayWorld challenge, and though we’re many days behind we are still going to finish. Today, Æsc unveils one of the principal deities of t’Avallin. The Legacy of Ash began as a role-playing setting for us, slowly evolving into fantasy fiction as the characters and cultures we created began to take on lives of their own. We hope you’ll follow us over the next few weeks as we reveal a little more about our world and the characters who bring it to life.
Last time we wrote about the misunderstood races in the world of Celduras.
This post will cover day 26. We’re doing them all on our Legacy of Ash Facebook page as well, so head over and give us a like.
4/14: What deities dwell in your realm? Are they involved?
Meet one of the principal deities of t’Avallin – the Saightari know her as Amalathnë, while to the Sidhra people she is Avai Solethra.
The goddess is known by many titles: Mother-of-All, Great Mother, World Mother, and the Many Who Are One.
Most frequently depicted as an eight-armed turu vaara (a kind of demon), she is the daughter of the mysterious god Mournoch, and sister to Ysran, who was slain in the war against the Vanjatt (titans).
The Mother-of-All is associated with crops, domestic animals (horses in particular), family, procreation, and bounty.
Her token is a sheaf of wheat or a small dish of grain, horses painted with stylized wheat sheaves, or a wreath of woven grain-stalks worn as a crown. On holy days worshippers set out *majarit* as offerings – special loaves marked with her symbol.
Amalathnë is the mortal enemy of Kurcæ, the vulture-winged god known as Flesh-blight.
The goddess possesses eight distinct aspects, creative and destructive, each known by their own name:
• Naharaat (literally “the ashen one”) is often portrayed as a skeletally thin hag, and is associated with the crow and the Broken Days, the interstitial periods between calendrical cycles. Naharaat is frequently depicted in a catacomb bearing a horse skull or “cursepole” – a standard fashioned from a crucified crow. In cold, dark temples, supplicants endlessly chant Naharaat’s hymn-of-a-thousand-names in an attempt to appease the implacable crone.
• Leshka, the Sacred Harlot, who takes what lovers she will, mortal and divine alike.
• Rava, the Guide. It is said that a legendary horse led Rava to the cave where Darawa imprisoned the goddess Sthene. Accordingly, the horse is considered Rava’s sacred companion, and she is depicted bearing a noose and a goad. In Ravan sanctuaries, oracles speak fortunes to supplicants, and shamanesses travel beyond their bodies in trances fuelled by drugged smoke.
• Nimaia is She-Who-Becomes. This quiet, meditative aspect is deeply personal and is seldom depicted publicly.
• Ghameht is the embodiment of Terror. “Blood-Drinker” is depicted naked, draped in a bloody tigerskin, and standing atop a mound of her enemies’ heads. Wielding her axe and a thunderbolt (often depicted as a trident), Ghameht was the first to strike a blow against the Vanjatt.
• Anga Mata is the cosmic ocean, deep and silent, encompassing a universe of mysteries.
• Sephtar is the aspect of sensuality, beauty, desire, lust and passion. The lover of Reah, her name means “Born in the Fires of Thought”. Rain, youth and summer nights are all sacred to Sephtar’s followers.
• Kyeri the Fruitful bears symbols of prosperity & wealth. Guardian of one of the crocks holding the Nectar of Knowledge, she is the epitome of grace, aristocracy and wisdom. Kyeri is often depicted astride her wise white elephant.
Amalathnë is just one of dozens of Asourai gods and goddesses revered across t’Avallin. They are not known to manifest directly or in avatar form, but worshippers are in no doubt that their respective wills influence mortal actions.
The Challenge Will Continue…
Thanks for reading about the world Æsc and I have built. We’ve fallen a bit behind in the questions, but we will answer them all and we’ll post more about the Legacy of Ash and the continents that make up the world of Celduras. This has been day 26, but look out for our next set of questions.