pon reflection, it can be said that the development of Arcanum and its peoples can be mapped through the rise and fall of it religions. Throughout the ages, it has been the fervent belief in higher powers that have propelled us into the most torrid, as well as the most enlightening, events in our history. And why shouldn't this be the case? Is it not our intellect and our passions that set us apart from our bestial counterparts? The value we place in our deities, whatever form they take, is merely a reflection of our greater desire to give form and pattern to our existence, to see beyond what is in the here and now, to give it meaning to the haphazard events that happen around us everyday.
In my book, The Pagan Gods of Arcanum, I have attempted to describe, in detail, the diverse religions practiced by the various races in Arcanum prior to the era often known as the Age of Legends. With the rise of the Panarii religion and its widespread acceptance among almost all of the civilized races, the importance of the ancient pagan religions has been largely overshadowed. By describing these gods and the people who worshipped them, I hope to shed light not only what has come before, but on who we are now and what we might one day become. Whether creatures of magick, or children of technology, we must never forget that some lessons are best learned by looking behind us.
I am often asked whether or not I have my own religious beliefs. I will say only this; I've studied the old gods extensively, visited their temples, even made offerings at certain altars where they are still intact. From what I've seen, I can with all verity say that these ancient beliefs are not to be trifled with. Tread lightly among them.
Aldous T. Buxington
Professor of Religion
THE LESSER GODS
I have classified the pagan gods into two categories: The Lesser Gods and the Greater Gods. I shall begin with a discussion of the Lesser Gods, as they are more specific to the various races of Arcanum, and serve to aid in the understanding of the Greater Gods, which shall be described afterwards. There is a Lesser God for each of the known sentient races, and they invariably embody those virtues within us that make our peoples unique.
The Lesser gods are further classified into three distinct groups: Noble, Neutral, and Darker. The nomenclature is my own, and is based on the general characteristics of the god described.
THE GREATER GODS
The Greater Gods are very interesting in that they seem to be common to all of the known races of Arcanum. Names and spellings might differ slightly depending upon specie and region, but the general belief in these more powerful beings is practically unchanged between them.
There are only four Greater Gods, as they seem to embody larger philosophical and religious concepts. They are as follows: