Nature Deities; Fertility and Destruction

Lightning meets a volcanic cloud of ash
A volcanic eruption meets a lightning storm in Chile

Recently, one of the PCs in my ToKiMo campaign died whilst trying to remove a diamond from a statue’s eye. Save versus disintegration can be a bitch. The loss was particularly tough on this player, because she had overcome a lot of challenges with that character, and was working towards some very lofty goals. In choosing her new character, the player opted to take control of a minotaur hireling which had been working with the party for awhile. She told me she would like to be a druid once she gains enough experience to take a class level, which meant I had some work to do. As of yet, my setting did not have any nature gods. So after a lot of fiddling, I came up with this pair. They will serve as two of the most powerful gods in the ToKiMo campaign world. The statblocks below are compatible with my deity system.

Opsenula

The All-Mother, Nature The Giving, The Lady of New Life


Major Deity (Divine Rank 10)
Holy Symbol A pear with a child depicted within it. The species of the child often depends on the species of the cleric wielding the symbol.
Home Plane Arborea
Alignment True Neutral
Major Portfolio Wisdom, Nature, Fertility, Food, Growth, Life
Minor Portfolio Children, Parents, Calm Weather, Flowers, Fruit, Agriculture, Gifts, Sex, Druids, Creation
Absolute Portfolio Rain, Childbirth, Mothers
Domains Animal, Plant, Weather, Earth, Healing, Water
Worshipers Rangers Druids, Farmers, Parents, Midwives
Clerical Alignments LN, TN, CH, NG, Rarely NE
Favored Weapons Clubs, Staves

While many gods can create life, Opsenula views it as her mission. She has given birth to many species, heroes, and even to gods. She seeks out those who are worthy, and lays with them. She can remain pregnant for decades, centuries, or even millenia. When she gives birth, she releases an entirely new species into the world. Sometimes it is a plant or animal species. Other times it is a new species of intelligent creature. When she lays with other gods, occasionally she will give birth to entirely new gods. Always these new beings will represent some worthy aspect of their parent. She almost always appears as a pregnant woman with flowers and fruits growing amongst her hair.

Dogma Opsenula revels in all life, especially new life. She teaches that acts of creation are sacred, and that children are one of life’s greatest gifts. She also teaches that the cultivation of the land, and the production of food, are sacred pursuits. Civilizations where the people are separated from their sources of food sadden her, and she encourages all of her faithful to have a hand in growing and harvesting her gifts.

Clergy and Temples Opsenula’s temples are commonplace. They can be found in nearly every major free city, though among city dwellers she is not the most popular of deities. Those who live off of the land are the most likely to revere her. It is rare to find a farming community without at least a shrine to the goddess known as Nature The Giving.

Ashnos

Stormrage, Wintergaze, Nature’s Vengeance


Major Deity (Divine Rank 10)
Holy Symbol A volcanic eruption. The eruption is often stylized to resemble a tree.
Home Plane Arborea
Alignment True Neutral
Major Portfolio Strength, Nature, The Hunt, Predators, Death, Rebirth
Minor Portfolio Meat, Natural Disasters, Weeds, Venomous Creatures, Poisonous Animals, Druids, Destruction, Decay, Fertilization, Competition
Absolute Portfolio Floods, Volcanoes, Wildfires
Domains Animal, Plant, Weather, Strength, Repose, Fire
Worshipers Rangers Druids, Barbarians, Trappers, Hunters
Clerical Alignments LN, TN, CN, NE, Rarely NG
Favored Weapons Fire, Axes

Ashnos appears as a naked man who stands 9 feet tall. Twin orbs of fire serve as his eyes, and a small hurricane twirls leaves and branches around his head as though they were hair. The earth shakes around him with each step he takes. Ashnos is not an evil god, but he is often mistaken as such for mortals who fear his power, and the indiscriminate way he wields it.

Dogma Ashnos teaches that the forces of nature rule the world. He finds cities and industry offensive. Those who worship him should live in small communities, or better yet, out amongst the natural world. And while Ashnos praises the struggle to survive, he also teaches that death must be accepted. Clerics of Ashnos may refuse to perform a resurrection spell on principal.

Clergy and Temples Ashnos’ temples are rare. Those who revere him do not often build permanent structures. The few temples which do exists are often in natural caves, particularly those which are near volcanoes. Other places of worship may be outdoors, where the nearby trees and stones have been painted or carved to resemble symbols holy to Ashnos.

History

Opsenula and Ashnos are as old as any gods. They remember a time shortly after the Logos brought the gods into being, when the gods themselves were all that existed. They took part in the creation of the multiverse, and in the formation of the first worlds of the material plane. In that ancient, time, the two were wedded lovers. Opsenula’s plantlife grew over the surfaces of the worlds, and Ashnos’ floods and volcanic eruptions fertilized the soil, allowing new plantlife to grow and flourish.

Opsenula gave birth to the first of the intelligent species, and she loved them. But Ashnos saw how they destroyed the natural world around them, and shaped it to suit their own whims. This angered him, and he called down lightning from sky to burn them, and rose the waters of the sea to drown them. When Opsenula saw what her husband had done, she became enraged, and attacked her him. The two battled until Opsenula saw that some of her children had survived. She laughed at her husband, for despite his rage he could not erase the mortal races from existence. Shamed, he moved to correct his error, but Opsenula struck a mighty blow against him, and Ashnos collapsed. The vowed that should he ever attempt to destroy all of her children, she would do battle with him until one of the two was destroyed.

In the eons since, the two god have remained apart from one another, only occasionally meeting to battle with one another, or to engage in passions which have resulted in numerous minor nature deities.

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4 thoughts on “Nature Deities; Fertility and Destruction”

  1. Are you using the standard Golarion creation myth?
    Also the idea of rival gods being former lovers interests me, And it’s something I’m playing with in the setting of the fantasy novel I’m writing.

  2. In my home campaign, I modeled druidic faith somewhat after the real thing.

    Druids are practitioners of “The Old Faith”, a religion originating with the earliest human culture. Rather than gods, druids worship nature in its most raw, elemental, and un-personified form.

    I think it’s an interesting twist on traditional priests and is a good explanation for why they can’t turn undead.

  3. Ashnos seems like he’d be a good god for Golarian goblins to worship. Fire and wreckin’ stuff, aw yiss.

    On that note I did convince a friend of mine (finally!) to run We Be Goblins for us. He’s planning on making a segway from that into one of the adventure paths set in Varisia for some accidental heroism.

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