Help with Ilviran Dualism

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9ofSwords
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Help with Ilviran Dualism

#1 Post by 9ofSwords » Sun Jan 14, 2018 7:01 am

I need some help understanding Ilviran Dualism

HMR, Ilvir 1, states:
The predominant school of Ilviran theology postulates that each being has two souls, one that stays in the body after death, and one that leaves the body and goes to an afterlife in Araka-Kalai. The first soul controls the mundane aspects of human life and the second is the creative intelligence, stimulated (or even created) by the deity.

And then:
Mortal life is a prelude to a cycle of reincarnations as these blessed creatures. (Ivashu)

So which soul is it that gets reincarnated? The soul left in the body, or the one in Araka-Kalai?

If it's the soul left in the body that get's used by Ilvir to create Ivashu, then it's not clear why there are ethereal Ivashu out harrying souls on their way to the afterlife [HMR, Religion 18]

If it's the soul from the Afterlife that Ilvir reincarnates, then there isn't much of an afterlife for Ilvirans — if you're lucky, you're not there for very long.

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Re: Help with Ilviran Dualism

#2 Post by phderiksson » Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:14 am

I do not know exactly what the author of Ilvir religion had in mind. But for me it is an essential core in all of the major religions.
In christisnity it is the trinity.
  • God the father,
    the son and
    the holy spirit.
Or in man:
  • the body
    the soul and
    the spirit.
But dual spirits is the core of most religion. Se also the Hun and po are types of souls in Chinese philosophy and traditional religion.
Last edited by phderiksson on Sun Jan 14, 2018 7:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Krazma
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Re: Help with Ilviran Dualism

#3 Post by Krazma » Sun Jan 14, 2018 1:37 pm

9ofSwords wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 7:01 am
So which soul is it that gets reincarnated? The soul left in the body, or the one in Araka-Kalai?
The latter. For a somewhat expanded discussion, see Araka-Kalai 23.

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Re: Help with Ilviran Dualism

#4 Post by 9ofSwords » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:18 pm

Krazma wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 1:37 pm
For a somewhat expanded discussion, see Araka-Kalai 23.
I have the 1st ed. of Araka-Kalai, not the latest. Page 23 is a map.
I'm guessing you're referring to the Doctrine of the The Dark Order and the The Ladder of Creation.
I don't see anything about Dual Soul theology stated there that is substantially different from HMR.

If the soul that travels to the afterlife is used for reincarnation, then that leaves me wondering what happens to the soul that stays in the body? What's to be done with it?
phderiksson wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:14 am
See also the Hun and po are types of souls in Chinese philosophy and traditional religion.
Some answers might be gleaned from the link phderiksson supplies above, and from Wikipedia: Soul Dualism

Indeed, it would appear that something like Chinese hun & po, or the dual soul ideas of Uralic peoples may have been the inspiration for Ilviran Dualism. IMO however, these beliefs have greater significance for the living than for the dead. The relation between the 2 souls seems to govern health, psychology, etc. Either one of the souls might temporarily leave the body, with consequences, but not necessarily death. If both souls leave (or are forced out) then death is certain.

I don't see how development of these concepts could be isolated to Ilviran theology alone. If a fully developed Ilviran Dualism is The Truth, then it would have consequences for the rest of the Harnic pantheon, and possibly for Savoryan and Fyvrian Shek-Pvar. There could in fact be many kinds of souls where each deity specializes in one or more. For example, various cultures believe in a shadow-soul, which would be Naveh's domain.

For an idea as to the possible complexity of various soul conceptions, check out these diagrams summarizing Estonian beliefs: http://www.folklore.ee/folklore/vol4/hing.htm

I'm quite certain that Ilviran Dualism and other pieces of Ilviran theology were devised just to give a gloss of esoteric complexity to the religion. Back in '87 it looked a lot more realistic than what many other game worlds provided. After all, if you had Ilvirans play any role in your campaign it was probably either because they might be able to summon and control Ivashu, or for the similarities between Ivashu and various Lovecraftian horrors. Both perfectly good reasons in my book, but I'd be curious to hear from anyone who developed Ilviran theology further.

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Re: Help with Ilviran Dualism

#5 Post by Krazma » Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:16 pm

9ofSwords wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:18 pm
I'm quite certain that Ilviran Dualism and other pieces of Ilviran theology were devised just to give a gloss of esoteric complexity to the religion. Back in '87 it looked a lot more realistic than what many other game worlds provided. After all, if you had Ilvirans play any role in your campaign it was probably either because they might be able to summon and control Ivashu, or for the similarities between Ivashu and various Lovecraftian horrors. Both perfectly good reasons in my book, but I'd be curious to hear from anyone who developed Ilviran theology further.
I've never found the Lovecraftian angle some people have attached to Ilvir to be very credible or appealing, personally. If you play a lot of Call of Cthulhu, that may seem "obvious" to you, but there are other conceptual frameworks.

To me, Ilvir makes more sense as an analogue of some of the Celtic deities. I personally utilize the "Pre-Harnic Jarin pantheon" document from the HRT page as a foundation for a lot of the Ilviran and Siemist lore in my game. (I would add, too, that at one point, it would have been difficult to tell the two religions apart.)

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