Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Ten Fictional Modern Faiths

These are 

-Fictional in the sense that I made them up. No guarantee that others have not had the same idea before.
-Modern in that they are set in the real, contemporary world and no more supernatural or world-breaking than anything else is.
-Faiths in having customs or beliefs shared among a group, related to the divine. Many of these religions would be considered sects or denominations of nonfictional faiths.

Attention has been paid to tying these faiths to aspects of real-world histories and belief systems, and to their most notable aspects. This is to facilitate recognizability and ease of integration in play.

Serena Malyon

  1. Elatenism, an Abrahamic faith that holds Biblical Moses and the Pharoah Akhenaten to be the same prophet of the sole god. Its temples and churches typically feature a brass or copper idol depicting God with a notably coptic inflection, and uses Passover as its new year. An early schism in its modern founding was led by its original leader from his own organization, leading to the creation of a more explicitly Christian branch based in Alexandria but drawing tithes primarily from Europe and the United States.
  2. Khaganal Sinirism, a politically-involved faith associated with certain cultural groups in southwestern Russia. Though known externally for being the avowed faith of multiple attempted political assassins, Sirinist life is domestically notable for burying their dead in dried river beds, for complex traditions related to the interpretation of dreams, and for cryptic references to Buddhist meditation practices. The characteristic political cause of Sinirists seems to be advocation for strict term limits, which has earned reprisals not only from the current Russian governments but multiple neighboring states.
  3. Arcadianism, a self-titled pagan faith with no formal structure. Acknowledges many deities but centralizes Pan, and mourns his death as a result of a cosmic struggle with Christ. This is notably marked by heavy drinking and ritual screaming on the first day of winter.  Distinguished from most forms of Paganism in that it ascribes notable power to Christian rites, and is denigrated by some pagans as "Self-hating Christianity." [Insert quip here]
  4. Mathasian Negationism, which western theologians often sweep away as a dualistic form of Hinduism. Based in certain monasteries in the state of Karnataka in India, it boasts of clergy which are said not be alive at all. Upon rare occasion in which outsiders have been allowed to inspect these clergy, it has been observed that they speak, move languidly, and eat a kind of vegetable paste. To explain this, the Mathasians simply refer to historical precedent, and to the mercy of gods.
  5. Kititulo No Teishutsu, a strident and nonliteral association of Lovecraftian Mythos, Babylonian spirits and deities, and traditional Shinto practices. Expressed in humanistic, optimistic, humble digital comics describing the fictive hierarchy of such beings. This faith without hierarchy beyond clout and appreciation for literary and artistic ability is intensely interested in the relationship between obscure deities while not stating outright that they literally exist. This plus a jocular tendency in writings, as well as essential texts lacking translations or lacking sufficient translations between Japanese, English, and Spanish render the faith ("KNT") opaque to all but the most interested.
  6. Reformed Baalism, a self-styled "Abrahamic faith without Abraham." Bases its cosmology in the Baal Cycle and worships both Baal and the god of the Old Testament. Baalist apologia claims that Baalites described in ancient myth were slandered for commending miscarried children to their god, for family planning, and for martial virtue. Currently has no notable temporal community, but has successfully managed to lobby their way onto mainstream lists of Judeo-Christian faiths and denominations.
  7. Gaiic Christianity, which hold the Earth to be the fourth part of the trinity quaternity, and that the crucifixion of Christ was to redeem Her-- "for God so loved the world." Tension currently exists among the Gaiic parishes along two axes. The first regards support or condemnation of a nonpartisan group that leans heavily on the suggestion that pollution is literally sacrilege, and that the vast majority of the world is damned to Hell for its complicity. The second is the strained relationship between church heads in Annaba and its bishops in Europe and Canada.
  8. Koreshan Judaism, that holds Cyrus the Great to have been the final messiah, and that foretells his eventual return at the end of all things. Mystics of this faith tend to emphasize the tripartite phases of all things, and debate the cosmological significance of Cyrus's rebuilding the Temple. Koreshan temples are notable for political participation, endorsing candidates for secular office and issuing bulls on how its members should participate in their communities.
  9. Tulayhawatism, which contends Muhammad to be the penultimate prophet, succeeded by Tulayha of the Banu Asad ibn Khuzaymah tribe. This faith reveres the Quran as well as the Atttestations of Tribes, an account of the occult teachings of Tulayha as well as a revisionist version of his relationship with the elder prophet. Based in Nahavand until the Iranian Revolution, the traditions of the original priesthood have split between separate followings in Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan. Though these branches generally hold each other to be righteous, the values and rites upheld by each have slowly drifted out of sync.
  10. Etilism, a Christian "heresy" known for its argument that the true role of Christians is not to make themselves more Christlike (impossible, bland) but to make Christ more human-like (achievable, based). This ranges from ceremonial litanies that exhort God to indulge in hedonistic vices to depicting Christ as a severe sinner or in the act of relieving himself. The Temptation of Christ is considered the holiest part of the new testament and Satan (though not Lucifer or the Devil) is said to be an angel of mercy.

7 comments:

  1. I know it's not your intention to offend but the term "Judeo-Christian" is contentious with some groups, be careful about how you use it...

    Etilism is kinda genius tho. I legit might start advocating for this now. Retroactively make Christ more humanlike and more flawed so that salvation can be more approachable by all!

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    1. Is this new? Ive never heard of any controversy over the term Judeo-Christian from anyone, Christian or Jew

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    2. The term was first popularized for broad-minded reasons, but has sometimes been used thoughtlessly in ways that don't make sense, or thoughtfully to exclude Muslims from the aegis of public good.

      I take Captain Crowbar's advice to be in good form, but I do think that "Judeo-Christian" is a term the Reformed Baalists are claiming for themselves. If someone wishes to read into that, they would not be wrong to do so.

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    3. It is, at the very least, terrible at being a category: it leaves out the other Abrahamaic religions (Baha'i, Mandaeism, Druze, Rastafari, Islam, etc.) and so is bad at being a religious category, and is bad at being a cultural category because its used to mean "The Christianized European Cultural Sphere" which is a whole lot more Greco-Roman than it is Jewish, and has traditionally been a decidedly unpleasant place for a lot of Jewish folks.

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    4. You know, I think I could Identify a few very popular authors as adherents of Etilism :P

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