A Christian pantheon?

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The Chronicler
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A Christian pantheon?

I am running a campaign where all the players originates from Earth. Apart from two believers in the old Norse gods, they are all devout Christians. One problem with that is that there is absolutely no information in the Planescape books about the God of the Worlds largest religion, or any of it´s abrahamic cousins.

At the beginning the lack of contact with their God after they entered the Outer Planes made for a lot of fun as the Christian characters got both frustrated, doubtful and somewhat humiliated. Before leaving Earth the Christian characters were adamant in their belief that theirs was the only deity in existence (they are members of a secret order descendent of the Knights Templar). The pagan characters are previous members of a governmental paranormal agency in imperial Germany that was trying to tap into divine energies for their own purposes. Mainly Christian, but one agent had the idea of giving the Norse gods a shot. When he died (in battle) he arrived in Valhalla and was sent back to Earth with the somewhat daunting task of reclaiming Northern Europe for the asatru.

He ended up as a captive of the Christians who, even when he demonstrated his new abilities, refused to believe he was sent by the Allfather. Instead they thought he had been decieved by some demon claiming to be the Norse god in question. Now that they have arrived in Sigil, and for example met a valkyrie, they have finally accepted that there are other gods, but I´m now faced with the challenge of fleshing out the Christian god, and figuring out what place He has in the multiverse. So far I´ve portrayed Him as an illusive and secretive god that some planars fear almost as much as Asmodeus (it is claimed by some that He is amassing an enormous army with the aim of conquering the entire Multiverse).The only way of entering His realm is by dying and transmigrating there.

Any other ideas?

There is also another issue I have to deal with. What about Satan? The Christian characters believe they are soldiers fighting against this dark adversery of their god. Should Satan be another prince of Baator? Asmodeus himself in another shape? Or the deposed leader of Hell?

I have had another idea that I would like some feedback on. What about creating a Christian pantheon consisting of two gods? Mainly the Father of the Christian Trinity (I haven´t sorted out what to do with Christ or The Holy Ghost yet, but I´m open for ideas) as well as the Jewish and Muslim God, but with Satan or Iblis as a divine adversary? It would perhaps be more in line with the Zurvanistic heresy of the Zoroastrian faith than these three religions, but at least there is a much stronger element of this kind of dualism in the Christian faith than in Judaism and Islam where Lucifer or Iblis/Shaytan is either given little thought or no autonomy whatsoever.

The good thing with imagining Satan as a deity is that I wouldn´t have to mess with the hierarchy of Baator as it is presented in the Planescape books. Satan would be just another deity residing in Baator with followers on certain planets on the Prime. He would also be able to give his worshipers full access to spells.

What do you think?

Rolro
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Christian god could be the

Christian god could be the secretive ruler of Chronias

Jem
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Monotheism is a Dead Topic

It tends to excite posters quite seriously.

If you search the mimir.planewalker.com archive you will find a few threads on the subject, and you will probably understand why this popular but touchy topic has been declared off-limits.

To my knowledge, this is our only Dead Topic here. Sorry!

elderbrain
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Yeah, a lot of bitter

Yeah, a lot of bitter disagreement on how to handle this subject. your best bet is to discuss it with your players and make a decision tailored to your group, and aiming not to offend/alienate any of them. Don't expect any "official" or semi-official Planescape answer - there isn't one. A pity we can't help more, but it's a real touchy, personal area for lots of people and there's no point having another inconclusive flamewar on the subject. Wish you luck, though...

Quickleaf
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Check out Li Po's Hermitage

While unfortunately I echo the sentiment that this is a touchy topic, I do have a great reference for you.

Check out Li Po's Hermitage: http://www.pathguy.com/lipo.htm#planescape

Ed, the website owner, is a Christian gamer with a great sense about how to incorporate aspects of the Christian faith into a Planescape game. You'll need to search around a bit, but it is really a great resource for any Planescape game!

sciborg2
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Wow, Li Po still has his site

Wow, Li Po still has his site up. GREAT RESOURCE.

I figure most transcendent deities (Yaweh, Isvara/Krsna/Brahman, the Great Spirit, etc) who are the very ground of reality would probably be beyond the limits of the setting as far as having a home plane is concerned.

However if you go with the Gnostic idea, then you'd shift the positions around to the point Christ and Yaweh might be separate beings & the Holy Ghost Sophia ends up being transcendent. This is a HUGE subject, check out Elaine Pagel's book about Gnostic Christians (should be required reading anyway IMO) or some of the gnostic stuff at the Sacred Texs website:

http://www.sacred-texts.com/

The Chronicler
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Thanks for the advice

I get why it´s not possible to have a official Planescape stance on the inclusion of the God of the abrahamic religions in the setting. But I guess quite a large number of planescapeplayers have included Him all the same. Especially if Earth plays a part in the campaign.

I don´t think any of our players have a problem with including the deities of living religions in the game. They regularly have to suspend their belief in the laws of natural science when we´re gaming, so doing the same with regards to religious beliefs seems quite easy.

The Gnostic approach is interesting I guess, especially marcionism. If the God of the Old Testament is wicked, as Marcion claimed, then perhaps I could simply conflate a version of Satan with the lesser creator god, the Demiurge. I believe that would be a lot more provocative though. And also a lot less likely to evoke the feeling of familiarity that is so important in gaming, even (or maybe especially) in a rather alien setting such as Planescape.

Quote:
Christian god could be the secretive ruler of Chronias

I think that´s a very good idea. And maybe I should just leave it at that, and not include Him directly in the game. Though I kind of like the idea of a God that sees himself as the universal ruler of all existence and is planning to rid himself of all the "lesser" creatures claiming to be deities. It is always nice to have a distant threat looming over the campaign setting, even if it is never put into play.

Clueless
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What Jem mentions is right -

What Jem mentions is right - this is considered a Dead Topic because threads on it almost always start out solidly intellectual and devolve into chaos, pain, agony and potential bans.

Forum rules here:
http://mimir.planewalker.com/forum/forum-rules-please-read

I'll be reposting those here in the new forums shortly.

We had a detailed discussion of it (the one and only time we managed it) here:

http://mimir.planewalker.com/forum/god-planescape-please-dont-light-me-fire
http://mimir.planewalker.com/forum/judeochristianmuslim-material-ddplanescape

Since this is a dead topic, I'm going to close this thread though I encourage you folks to take it to PMs or another forum if you have things you want to hammer out for your own campaign settings.

Topic locked