Covenant of the Patriarch Spirit
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The Covenant of the Patriarch Spirit is a monotheistic religion notably practiced by the Polvora Empire.
Followers of the Covenant believe that the Patriarch Spirit is the only true god and the creator of all things. It is believed that he is not from Erudite having come from parts unknown. Some theologians believe that he's the same entity as Ouroboros, but the Patriarch does not directly intervene with the affairs of the universe, preferring to watch over it instead. If he must intervene, he sends messengers called the Ayud in his place.
In reality, the Patriarch is in fact the god Patrius, although he presented himself as an all-powerful being on par with Ouroboros in order to preach the idea of humility, to recognize that entities greater than mortal comprehension exist in the universe.
The Ayud are powerful spirits that willingly protect individuals by watching over them and guiding them to a destined path. Theologians believe the Ayud to be definitive, real entities, but no one has yet to figure out how to communicate with them. Whatever destiny the Ayud has for an individual is entirely up to interpretation based on their actions.
Ayud often leave imprints of themselves wherever they have protected their chosen individual. This imprint is only perceivable in the form of feelings of tranquility when one stands in the area. Reportedly, this calming effect has led to truces between bitter enemies and the ending of wars.
Armonia is the first known Ayud to make himself known to the physical world. He arrived on Khyorgan by crashing down to the surface on a meteor.
Gaiztoak is an Ayud that was exiled by the Patriarch after speaking out against him. Today, Gaiztoak has taken on the form of a spectral businessman, making deals with living individuals in exchange for their soul.
Interpretations on the Patriarch's intentions vary among sects. Some believe that he advocates the balance of the world while other believe that he desires order. These differences in belief have caused internal strife. The most well-known sects are those that formed as a result of the Great Schism shortly following the War on Khyorgan when the true identity of the Patriarch was discovered to be a god named Patrius.
Patrius himself remains conflicted over the opposing views of his followers. He fears that taking sides would increase the bloodshed and betray hundreds of years of culture, so he has decided to only intervene with threats which he considers to be common enemies in hopes that they can better tolerate one another.
Orthodox members believe that Patrius is not the one true God, but merely another servant of the true Patriarch like Armonia was - one who should be respected, rather than worshiped. As such, they view worship of Patrius to be equivalent to that of paganism or idol worship. Orthodox members still hold the belief that the one true Patriarch is still the all-powerful, omnipotent deity that is beyond mortal form, and that he watches from beyond the universe.
New Adventists believe that Patrius is in fact the Patriarch that Armonia described long ago, and that he has chosen to take on a tangible form to be closer to mortals. They do not necessarily believe that the Patriarch is infallible and perfect, but rather a being that does his best to serve humanity. New Adventism, while still largely monotheistic, recognizes the divinity of other gods, but do not actively worship any besides Patrius.
The Covenant as it is known today originated when Armonia crashed down to Khyorgan in the area just north of the Picos Mountains. This area is today known as the Ayud Crater. From here, the religion spread across much of the Amacata Desert and most notably, the Gibral Peninsula where the Polvora Empire would adopt it as their official religion.
When Armonia spread the word of the Patriarch, he preached him as an all-powerful, omnipotent being beyond mortal comprehension. As such, he was revered to be the one true god.
In the early Renaissance era, theologians discovered the identity of the Patriariach. It was confirmed to not be Ouroboros, but in fact the god Patrius, one of the members of the Council of Divines, a group of gods born after the Shattering. Despite Patrius being an extraordinarily powerful entity in his own right, this discovery led to some doubts of the Patriarch's divinity among his followers leading to an eventual schism of the Polvoran populace.
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