~Love's Maiden, The Great Mother, Our Lady of Pleasure~
|Symbol:||A Beautiful Female Face With Sparkling Blond Hair|
|Portfolio:||Passion, Lovers, Love, Beauty, Art|
|Domains:||Good, Healing, Protection|
|Weapon:||Maiden's Kiss (Short Sword)|
Breakdown of ReligionEdit
The Goddess of love and passion, she is something of an enigma in her goals, for while love is the binding force that many would attribute to solid relations and pulling force between individuals, it is just as often (if not more so) found to be a fluid organic force, leading people in all manner of directions, often against logic for love itself. Nymowna holds dear the many aspects of love, and wants her followers to follow their instincts and impulses, so long as the overall condition of love is not forsaken. She loves the devoted, the romantics, and the committed. She seeks to quench couplings without connection, infidelity, loveless marriages, and crimes of passion.
In her own way, Nymowna is also a staunch advocate of heroes and adventurers. The romantic hero is one of the varied ideals of Nymowna upholds. The church of Nymowna also supports and oft times sponsors archaeologist - traveller - trader - adventurers to seek out lost or rare works of art so that they may be enjoyed by the greater public.
The Church of Nymowna is as varied and multifaceted as tempestuous nature of Love and passion itself, but the largest portion of Nymowna's followers consider themselves to be a part of the relatively traditionalist "Adherents of the Maiden." Several divergent groups exist within the Adherents, with their own particular emphases on Nymowna's many interests, but aside from occasional disagreement. The most noteworthy of these groups is the "Plesura Libares" regarded by the more traditional Adherents with some amusement, and just as often, considerable alarm. The young but fast growing movement of worshippers emphasizes pleasure to great extent, along with the liberty to pursue this, often disregarding social mores.
Role of the Church in the communityEdit
The clergy of the Adherents of the Maiden are held in high regard with matrimonial matters, and are often found conducting ceremonies for marriage. The clergy are also sought out for evaluations of artwork, advice on keeping healthy relationships, and making sure that various festivals are portraying the right feeling of romance.
There is one leader of the church of Nymowna at any time, the Magnessa of Nymowna, whom has de facto always been a female. Chosen through vote of the Nymowna's Six, coincidentally the advisors of whomever the current Magnessa may be, each representing one of Nymowna's major facets of love: Kama (physical love), Ludis (playful love), Diligere (affectionate, friendly love), Pratus (practical love), Manis (possessive/highly emotional love), Amae (altruistic, spiritual love). The six are held to be equal, and all have a say if they choose to make a case to the Magnessa on policy. When any of the six retires, they typically choose their replacement.
A varied group even within the traditionalist Adherents, adventuring Nymowna worshippers can be rather simplistically split into two groups.
Prelates of the Lady (Clerics)Edit
The prelates, typically seen as benign advisors on affairs romantic and otherwise, act as healers when need be. It is notable that their bedside manner is stereotypically viewed (but well deserved) to includes embarrassing relationship questions and unsolicited advice on that same topic.
The Maiden's Blades (Paladins)Edit
A much smaller group, roughly 1 for every 20 clerics, the Blades are the militant wing of Nymowna, standing ready to fight for love, against the oppression of romance, while looking dazzling and radiant at the same time. Some whom have seen enough of the world stay on at temples as guards.
The temples of Nymowna are most often found in towns of large size and some villages. Smaller locales will have shrines dedicated to Nymowna. Many times a large city will not have a temple of Nymowna due to their tolerance of prostitution, which leads to a boycott by the Adherents.
Their architecture is classical, with heavy use of marble or some other local stone if not available, and incorporating the more beautiful aspects of local architecture where appropriate. Universally, each temple has a representation of Nymowna, as the physical ideal of the local female set in either a large gold disc or a large marble slab, set in the very large chapel that is a constant in well established temples.
In addition, the temples take one of the defining features of their locale and set it as a principal element to catch the eye, such as a grand flower garden in rural areas, a mighty statue in a mining community, or an impressive tide pool on a coastal town.
Relations of a priest to the templeEdit
The temples have a small group of "settled" clergy whom live at the temples and provide the backbone to the parish and maintain the temple and its premises. The "unsettled" clergy are in almost continual pilgrimage from one temple to the next and back again, to experience the world and prevent stagnation in ideals of love and passion. Occasionally the clergy will switch their status, provided the temple will not be understaffed, or there is a willing replacement for the post.