when did non elves start getting invited into Eilistraees priestesshood?

Since the Chosen of Eilistraee is a religious oriented player group, naturally there is a place to have theological discussions. That is in-game religions; please leave real-world religion out of it. Debate the fine points of a certain dogma, how a church can enforce worship while staying true to its tenets or simply why one deity is better than another one is. All are free to talk about it here.

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Orin
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Re: when did non elves start getting invited into Eilistraees priestesshood?

Post by Orin » Thu Feb 15, 2018 7:29 pm

With respect to simply non-human priests, I think that - perhaps - the story of the first non-human priest might be the story of the first Darksong Knight - or Eilistraeean paladin. As Shir'le spake above, there may totally be lore that contradicts this, but it's an idea worth sharing.

When I think of this question, I think of my own personal avatar within the FR. A person who was drawn to Eilistraee by beauty and longing in his own heart. Who then found that the Goddess and her clergy shared MANY of his own very strongly held personal beliefs. Always being kind, aiding all, loving big, resisting and vanquishing evil with a swift and merciful hand and carrying food around for the hungry and the weary alike. They also noted that the Dark Lady seemed so very alone in her struggle for her people. It was natural for them to want to convert, or at least establish themselves as a firm ally of the church and the faithful.

This person undertakes many dangerous actions in the name of Eilistraee and in accordance with what her wishes would be. They free slaves, they journey into the Underdark, even though they are sort of claustrophobic and afraid, to seek out drow still trapped by the yoke of Lolth's evil and bring them Eilistraee's message. They come up with mad cap plans to rescue those that would be otherwise killed or cursed by the minions of the spider queen. (I have many of these.) They also take great delight in thwarting and destroying those that worship Lolth, which in itself is kind of insanely brazen. All of these things together...create a person who would easily find the Dark Dancer's favor and perhaps even her boon in the form of, at first, simple blessings, but over time perhaps even more. At least that's what I think.

Oh, AND he sings to her every day, because no one can really stop him and she hasn't seemed to mind thus far.

All of THAT being said, I'd like to address the subject that Irrenen was talking about at the end here about redemption. One of the things that I think people don't always understand about the drow, which is what REALLY drew me to stories about them in my youth, is that they are - with respect to the communities under the rule of Lolth's church, a race of the abused.

Especially males, but really all drow that live in a community ruled by the spider queen are sufferers of abuse, neglect and a lack of love from those that should love them most. They abuse their children, they abuse each other and they are all abused BY Lolth. It's actually stated in her characteristics that Lolth has kind of abandoned trying to retake Arvandor because she is having too much fun making the noble houses murder each other constantly. The intrigue and plots of destroying lives is too decadent a delight for her to care about furthering any real agenda. In short, cities like Menzoberanzan are prisons. Prisons of stone and of the mind where the innocent are tortured until they are no longer that. It is hell, and she keeps them trapped in hell, knowing no other way to exist than to play her cruel game. All for her own amusement and satisfaction.

When dealing with someone living in such a situation, telling them that they need to be redeemed is like telling someone who is on fire that the smoke that is coming off of them is bothering others. You can't simply tell them that they are evil and they don't need to be, you have to also show them how wonderful and freeing life can be if they leave their old ways behind. You basically have to speak to them the way we in this world would speak to a person who is living in an abusive situation. By treating them as the victim. A dangerous victim, to be sure and one that might try and kill you, but a victim none the less. It is for this reason that the person described above would be very good at getting drow (especially males) to return with him to the surface. For he, like a very famous drow who changed his stars, knows what it is like to be a child and stand next to his mother's chair while she tells him how much of a piece of garbage he is, just for BEING a male.

Eilistraee doesn't feel that the drow of the Underdark need to be redeemed, because in HER eyes, they don't. They need to be saved. They need to be rescued from the horror of living in that society. They need to be shown that they don't HAVE to live that way. She wants, more than anything I think, to scoop up every drow living in such a situation into her arms and give them her love. That warm, pure, vibrant love that they have been denied their entire lives. That love that she herself was denied her entire existence. The love of a mother.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

Irennan
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Re: when did non elves start getting invited into Eilistraees priestesshood?

Post by Irennan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 9:54 pm

[quote="Orin":c8vvtbt4]With respect to simply non-human priests, I think that - perhaps - the story of the first non-human priest might be the story of the first Darksong Knight - or Eilistraeean paladin. As Shir'le spake above, there may totally be lore that contradicts this, but it's an idea worth sharing.

When I think of this question, I think of my own personal avatar within the FR. A person who was drawn to Eilistraee by beauty and longing in his own heart. Who then found that the Goddess and her clergy shared MANY of his own very strongly held personal beliefs. Always being kind, aiding all, loving big, resisting and vanquishing evil with a swift and merciful hand and carrying food around for the hungry and the weary alike. They also noted that the Dark Lady seemed so very alone in her struggle for her people. It was natural for them to want to convert, or at least establish themselves as a firm ally of the church and the faithful.

This person undertakes many dangerous actions in the name of Eilistraee and in accordance with what her wishes would be. They free slaves, they journey into the Underdark, even though they are sort of claustrophobic and afraid, to seek out drow still trapped by the yoke of Lolth's evil and bring them Eilistraee's message. They come up with mad cap plans to rescue those that would be otherwise killed or cursed by the minions of the spider queen. (I have many of these.) They also take great delight in thwarting and destroying those that worship Lolth, which in itself is kind of insanely brazen. All of these things together...create a person who would easily find the Dark Dancer's favor and perhaps even her boon in the form of, at first, simple blessings, but over time perhaps even more. At least that's what I think.

Oh, AND he sings to her every day, because no one can really stop him and she hasn't seemed to mind thus far.

All of THAT being said, I'd like to address the subject that Irrenen was talking about at the end here about redemption. One of the things that I think people don't always understand about the drow, which is what REALLY drew me to stories about them in my youth, is that they are - with respect to the communities under the rule of Lolth's church, a race of the abused.

Especially males, but really all drow that live in a community ruled by the spider queen are sufferers of abuse, neglect and a lack of love from those that should love them most. They abuse their children, they abuse each other and they are all abused BY Lolth. It's actually stated in her characteristics that Lolth has kind of abandoned trying to retake Arvandor because she is having too much fun making the noble houses murder each other constantly. The intrigue and plots of destroying lives is too decadent a delight for her to care about furthering any real agenda. In short, cities like Menzoberanzan are prisons. Prisons of stone and of the mind where the innocent are tortured until they are no longer that. It is hell, and she keeps them trapped in hell, knowing no other way to exist than to play her cruel game. All for her own amusement and satisfaction.

When dealing with someone living in such a situation, telling them that they need to be redeemed is like telling someone who is on fire that the smoke that is coming off of them is bothering others. You can't simply tell them that they are evil and they don't need to be, you have to also show them how wonderful and freeing life can be if they leave their old ways behind. You basically have to speak to them the way we in this world would speak to a person who is living in an abusive situation. By treating them as the victim. A dangerous victim, to be sure and one that might try and kill you, but a victim none the less. It is for this reason that the person described above would be very good at getting drow (especially males) to return with him to the surface. For he, like a very famous drow who changed his stars, knows what it is like to be a child and stand next to his mother's chair while she tells him how much of a piece of garbage he is, just for BEING a male.

Eilistraee doesn't feel that the drow of the Underdark need to be redeemed, because in HER eyes, they don't. They need to be saved. They need to be rescued from the horror of living in that society. They need to be shown that they don't HAVE to live that way. She wants, more than anything I think, to scoop up every drow living in such a situation into her arms and give them her love. That warm, pure, vibrant love that they have been denied their entire lives. That love that she herself was denied her entire existence. The love of a mother.[/quote:c8vvtbt4]

Holy wow, it's like you took the words right from my mouth. That's what I always say when people go around throwing out redemption in relation to Eilistraee, as if she was one of those "atone for your sinz!!1!11!" kind of deity. They entirely miss her point.

Also, a bit late, but welcome to this small sanctuary!

Orin
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Re: when did non elves start getting invited into Eilistraees priestesshood?

Post by Orin » Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:37 pm

Thank you! I'm enjoying engaging with folks on here. It's a lot of fun. Also, thanks for your words. It's nice to know a kindred spirit.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

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