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Tales Of Moonsea - The Herald of Chaos
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  Tales of Moonsea

Oghma
Cleric Alignments: Any

Oghma: The Lord of Knowledge, Binder of What is Known (Greater Deity)

Symbol: Blank Scroll
Home Plane: House of Knowledge
Alignment: Neutral
Portfolio: Bards, inspiration, invention, knowledge
Worshipers: Artists, Bards, Cartographers, Inventors, loremasters, sages, scholars, scribes, wizards.
Cleric Alignments: Any
Domains: Charm, Knowledge, Luck, Travel, Trickery

Favored Weapon: "Mortal Strike" (longsword)

ollowers of Oghma (ogg-mah) tell an interesting tale regarding the earliest days of existence. Not long after Shar and Selune created Toril and gave birth to Chauntea, the world's animating spirit, a traveler ventured to the world from a distant realm. He came upon a chaotic landscape of indistinct, shapeless concepts yearning to be given solidity. To each of these concepts he gave a name that would define it in the eons to come. Such was the power of these names that the concepts transcended their elusive existence, bound to physical form in the material world. Thus, did Oghma, the Binder of What is Known, give order to chaos and claim an honored place among Toril's oldest deities. Oghma's dominion over the realm of ideas continues to this day. The Lord of Knowledge sits in judgment of all ideas, deciding whether they will be allowed to spread, or whether they will die with their originator. In this regard, the Binder exercises a great deal of caution, for the experience of countless ages weighs heavy on his heart. He prefers a doctrine of ideological conservatism, hoping that no new thought disrupts the delicate balance he has nurtured since the beginning of time. Despite this, Oghma exudes an outwardly cheerful demeanor, using his good looks, skillful debate, and peerless charm to sway even the most ardent opponents to his way of thinking. Radical deities such as Lathander and Lliira, who frequently oppose Oghma's rigid adherence to the status quo, view his orations as hidebound and manipulative. Nonetheless, all but the most vile and loveless appreciate the fine lilt of his voice and his delicate, skillful performance on the yarting (a type of guitar). Oghma's legendary musical skill and geniality define mortal impressions of the deity. He is the patron of bards, and most consider him the source of creative inspiration and the protector of accumulated knowledge.

Served by sages, wizards, bards, and any who base their lives on the exchange of knowledge or song, Oghma is honored by members of every race, social class, and creed. Clerics of Oghma pray for spells in the morning. Every day, they perform two rituals known as the Cornerstones of the Day. The first, the Binding, is a morning ceremony of writing mystic symbols during silent prayer. The second, known as the Covenant, is an evening ritual sharing works of wisdom, song and new knowledge. Clerics celebrate Midsummer and Shieldmeet as holy days, since these occasions traditionally mark new agreements or pacts, when many written contracts, deeds, and bonds are drawn up. When a child follower of Oghma achieves his or her twelfth year (or equivalent for nonhuman worshipers), local clerics perform a private ceremony known as the Naming. They reveal to the youth his or her "True Name", a secret signifier that represents that being's true essence. One's True Name is used only in personal prayer to the Lord of Knowledge and should not be shared with anyone. Oghmanytes believe that knowing one's True Name gives power over that person, and hence do not mention it even to their closest friends or relatives. Oghma's clerics often multiclass as bards and sometimes as wizards or loremasters.

HISTORY/RELATIONSHIPS: Most Oghmanyte myths date to the earliest centuries of human existence. Some claim that Oghma gifted the world with written language, others that the Binder is responsible for all concepts. While such theological pedantry incites endless debate among the scholarly classes of Faerun, nearly everyone agrees that Oghma is ancient and has been widely worshiped since before the dawn of history. Together, Oghma, Denier, Milil, and Gond are known as the Deities of Knowledge and Invention. The Binder has a somewhat patronizing relationship with Deneir and Milil, whom he treats as his servants in the preservation and promulgation of knowledge. He appreciates Gond's enthusiasm and creativity but frowns at the Wonderbringer's constant desire to push technology further and further, putting innovation ahead of introspection. Oghma dislikes Mask, Cyric, and Bane, viewing them as the most credible threats to his beloved balance.

DOGMA: Knowledge, particularly the raw knowledge of ideas, is supreme. An idea has no weight, but it can move mountains. The greatest gift of humankind, an idea outweighs anything made by mortal hands. Knowledge is power and must be used with care, but hiding it away from others is never a good thing. Stifle no new ideas, no matter how false and crazed they seem; rather, let them be heard and considered. Never slay a singer, nor stand by as others do so. Spread knowledge wherever it is prudent to do so. Curb and deny falsehoods, rumor, and deceitful tales whenever you encounter them. Write or copy lore of great value at least once a year and give it away. Sponsor and teach bards, scribes, and record keepers. Spread truth and knowledge so that all folk know more. Never deliver a message falsely or incompletely. Teach reading and writing to those who ask (if your time permits), and charge no fee for the teaching.