- This is a work in progress
The faith originated in the Borderlands in the Age of Heroes where the splinter Bordermen clans reigned supreme. These clans initially worshiped the Old Gods of the Forest. Over time, the Bordermen began to give names to a select few gods which they found were the more significant and more powerful ones.
Part of the religion's beliefs was a faith focused on the worship of animal gods. The deified animals were the hawk, wolf, snake, whale, moth, owl and the dragon. Bas reliefs found in ancient Bordermen ruins have led scholars to believe that these deified animals were actually totemic representations of several Old Gods, some of which are still worshiped today. Of these bas reliefs; six are depicted as male and two as female.
Beliefs and practices
Burial and reincarnation are important factors in the religion. If a borderman is deceased, a proper burial is needed so that he can enjoy the afterlife in its full extent. When a person has died, they are traditionally mummified and put in decorated sarcophagi.
A common prayer exchanged by followers of the religion is "In the ashes of the wake", with the responding line "We rise", or sometimes "I rise". If one person begins this prayer, others are usually expected to join in. The prayer involves clutching the right hand over the heart and bowing.
Priests of Barran the Exalted are called Dreamwalkers. They anoint devotees using lava from Red Mountain, which is considered sacred in the religion. Infants are ceremonially "burned" during a baptism rite by being briefly exposed to non-lethal lava, which is magically modified by the priests. Adults may also be anointed with lava in this fashion, when receiving a blessing from one of the Dreamwalkers.
During the blessing ceremony, the following exchange occurs as the priest pours holy lava over the adherent's head:
- Dreamwalker: "Ol mu shun [name] nol pah thok, vos sen/kon kos kiin ontzos ko yolos, ko kii, ko goraag, ful tol nust aal kos orkiin kotin jul/miil. Ko faal Kii do faal Vopraan,"
- Response: "Zu'u alok"
- Dreamwalker: "As we cleanse [name] from all filth, may the boy/girl be born again in the flame, in the ash, in the lava, so that they may be reshaped into a man/woman. In the Ashes of the Wake,"
- Response: "I rise"
- "Lingrah krosis saraan Strundu'ul, voth nid bahlaan klov praan nau. Naal un zaan, mu ofan nii nu, naal suleyk do Yol, naal suleyk do Kii, ahrk naal suleyk do Keizaalsewuth. Meyz nu Asterion, Jersebildiik. Dahmaan daar rok."
- "Long has the Storm Crown languished with no worthy brow to sit upon. By our breath we bestow it now to you in the name of Fire, in the name of Ash, and in the name of the Borderlands of old. You are Asterion now, the Defender of the East. Hearken to it."
In the Wastelandic religion, all followers of the faith are considered equals. Men are seen as great warriors and leaders, and the women are seen as those who give birth to these great warriors, and so are considered of equal importance.
As with other major religions in Westeros, the religion has several basic social rules against incest, kinslaying, and bastardy. It also upholds the laws and hospitality, which hold sacred the good behavior of a guest and host towards each other.
Revered and Worshiped Gods
The God of the Dead and the chief deity. Barran is portrayed as a wolf-like figure and is revered as the Ancient Spirit of the Woods and Master of Life and Death. He is the patron deity of men, warriors, fathers, children, the sick and old, the dead, and masculinity. His titles include Lord of the Wastelands, the Grey God, the Spirit of the Woods, and the God of the Living and the Dead. Alongside his wife Alfdur, he rules over the Eternal Grounds.
The Goddess of Wisdom and the wife of Barran. Alfdur is portrayed as a hawk-like figure and is revered as the Mistress of Feminine Might. She is the patron deity of women, mothers, scholars, war, and spiritual ascendance. Her titles include Lady of Wisdom, Sister-Hawk, Goddess of Feminine Might, and the Mother Goddess. She rules over the Eternal Grounds alongside her husband, Barran.
Also known as Old Knocker, is the God of Mysteries and the Secret Arts. He is rarely worshiped and is often portrayed as a snake. He is revered as the trickster-god, and is infamous for his deceptive practices. He is the patron deity of thieves, criminals, the accused, liars, and traitors. His titles include Master of Deceit, the Plotter, Lord of Treachery, and King of Debauchery.
The God of War, Slaughter, and Victory. Aeyr is portrayed as a dragon and is revered as the Lord of Battle. He is infamous for his fiery temper and love for war. He is the patron deity of warriors, kings, generals, the wounded, soldiers, and the lost. His titles include Lord of War, The War-lord, Battlemaster of the Gods, and God of the Brotherhood.
The Wastelandic god against adversity. He is the brother of Barran and the God of Labor, Work and Commerce. Stuhn is portrayed as a whale. He is the patron deity of workers, laborers, slaves, merchants, craftsmen, stonemasons, and builders. His titles include the Craftsman, Lord of the Forge, Craftsman of the Gods, Father of Workers.
Esgyn, "Kiss at the End", warrior-queen of Aeyr the Beast and Goddess of Seasons, Weather, the Oceans, and the Elements, is one of the most important deities in the pantheon. Esgyn is portrayed as a moth. She is the patron deity of travelers, sailors, messengers, animals, hunters and pilgrims. Her titles include Breath of the East, Lady of Change, Mistress of Storms, Spirit of the Weathers, and the Shifting-God.
Norasil, also known as the "God of Ransom", is the son of Barran and Alfdur and the half-brother of the missing god Nafaalilargus. He is the God of the Passing, Transitions, and the Afterlife. He is portrayed as an owl. Norasil is the patron deity of the dying, sick, wandering spirits, the undead, stillborn, and ghosts. His titles include God of the Near-Dead, the Collector, the Harvester-God, Messenger of the Gods, and the Master of the Void.
Meddahtet the Terrible is a deity that is almost never worshiped. Aside from the other members of the pantheon, Meddahtet is not portrayed as an animal, in fact he is often portrayed to represent utter nothingness and misanthropy. He created and rules over the Ten Pits of Meddahtet, a hypothetical "hell" or limbo for those that have committed evil against the bordermen. Meddahtet is rarely portrayed at the bordermen bas-reliefs and most are often oblivious to his position in the pantheon.
The bastard son of Barran and a mortal woman, Nafaalilargus was born a formless, faceless, and nameless entity who was exiled from the immortal plane by a jealous Alfdur. As a result, the entity took the face of a demon, the form of a monstrous dragon, and the name "Nafaalilargus".