Dark Soldier’s Fantastic Fictional Religions!

After I found some awesome info on building fictional religions, I thought I would share some of the ones I have planned for the Dark Veil books!

Followers of the True King

The followers of the True King believe that many years ago, a powerful sentient being arrived from the sky along with four other beings: Mother Autumn, Father Frost, Mother Earth and Father Summer. This sentient being, known as the True King, created the planet and placed the four other beings as rulers over the planet. However, many years later, a being by the name of Laecon, Father Frost’s protoge, made war with the True King and took control over the entire planet in a 400-year-war, including the four other beings.

Nobody has heard from the True King since, but the True King’s followers believe that the King will return to make war and defeat King Laecon once and for all.

Followers of the Universe 

These people believe that the sky, the sun, the moon and the stars are the body of a giant one-eyed goddess. During the night, the goddess is open to prayer and suggestion. During the day, the goddess begins her work from suggestions the night before or her own will. This goddess is fickle, and it is often hard to tell if she will actually listen to the people’s suggestion. The more open her eye is (the moon being her eye), the more interested she is in listening.

When a person dies, if they are good enough, they will become one of the stars in the sky, a part of this goddess.

They are firm believers in allowing change. Like the tides, they flow with the situations of life, as they do not believe that people can change their situation.

Followers of the Dark Veil

This, depending on who you ask, is either an offshoot or the precursor to the True King religion. The Dark Veil believers believe that there is a being even older than the True King known as the Dark Veil. Their ways are mysterious, their gender and appearance unknown. The Dark Veil, according to this religion, created the True King. The True King wanted to make their own creation apart from the Dark Veil’s universe. Therefore the Dark Veil allowed the True King and four other gods to do their work. But the True King would also reap the suffering of a corrupt world.

Many believe that the Dark Veil has a direct contact with King Laecon, who fought against the True King in a 400-year-war. Laecon has no problem with toting this belief everywhere he goes.

Followers of the Great Void

These people believe that there are gods, but that they are uninterested in their creation after they create them. They believe that all bad things that happen are a result of their feuding amongst themselves. As such, their only consolation in the world is to either accept the bad things of life or to die – to go into the void of nonexistence and never return.

They avoid having children and will often recruit orphans. Angsty teenagers often try to join but the priests insist that they consider their decision a while before doing so.

“Ohmmmm”: A Discussion on Constructed Literary Religions

So I keep on doing this thinking thing. It seems to be getting me into trouble. Still, it helps with world-building for the Dark Veil saga. But I think it’ll help out all the rest of you who are world-building, too. So give ear to my speech – or rather, my text.

Let’s say you’re making a religion for your high fantasy novel, or just any fantasy novel. Most of them do have one, whether its true or not. But how does one go about doing it? For the Dark Veil saga, with the creation myth. I based it loosely off a mixture of Judaism and Egyptian mythology. Strange mix, since the two don’t really like each other too much from what I understand. Apparently keeping an entire nation in bondage for four hundred years and then attempting to destroy them multiple times afterwards brings about really long grudges. Anyhow, I needed a god, a hierarchy of created beings, and some spiritly servants of this god (which seems to be a recurring theme). Then I had to make a period of peace which would all fall apart awfully. Then I had to make some way for a salvation process.

But after your whole creation myth is done, what do you do? There’s got to be more to this religion than a simple myth to start it off. Sadly, I hadn’t even thought of such a thing until just recently when I saw a Tumblr post on the concept. So, exactly what else is involved with making a religion? To both summarize and continue the thoughts of this post, here is how I would respond:

1. Worshippers and a way to worship
Think about it. If you have a god or gods, they must have some way of being pleased, even if they don’t require that you try to please them. In Earth religions, that involves worshipping in some way or another. You have to pray or sing or chant or sacrifices goats or bow towards some general direction at some specific time. There has to be something of some sort to do. Otherwise, it’s just a belief system and not really a religion.

2. Worship leaders
We can’t just have these crazy worshippers wandering around aimlessly! What kind of a religion is this? So we have to have someone to make sure everything is going smoothly and all are worshipping the right way. (This is why lots of religions get upset at Christians. It seems like chaos, with all this lack of a distinct prayer time and precise way of worship. But there is order in disorder, trust me. Pastors and stuff.)  There should probably even be order among the orderers. My mind goes to church again – not just leaders, but bishops, senior pastors, assistant pastors, music directors and deacons! And they are typically wearing something to differentiate them from the regular worshippers. You can basically choose anything you so desire for these sorts of things. Sadly, I do not have this down for the Dark Veil saga. But I will, eventually.

3. Holy Holidays
Celebrations are in order! Whether it’s celebrating someone’s birth, death or the beginning of a season, most if not all religions have a holiday. Thankfully, this is the one thing I had before I saw the post. In the Dark Veil saga, I have one holiday set in stone so far: the Day of the Phoenix, celebrated during the winter equinox. It is believed in their religion that a phoenix’s yearly cycle is based on the arrivals of winter and spring. The Day of the Phoenix, then, is actually the celebration of both its death and rebirth. Alongside many odd traditions, they celebrate by burning a dead tree in order to use its ashes as mulch in order to plant a new tree once Spring comes around. Your holy days can be much simpler or more complex than this, but holidays are a great idea for a religion.

4. Disagreements
Nobody’s going to agree on absolutely everything. That’s the beauty of human interaction. So the worshippers and/or leaders are probably going to disagree on something somewhere in their holy text. For instance, in the Dark Veil saga, there is some debate as to whether the “four prophets” prophecy is a reference to four literal people who will save the nation or a reference to four time periods of salvation for devout followers of the faith. Those who believe in the “time period” are more willing to go to battle, while those who believe in the literal translation would rather wait for a literal prophet to save them. But religions are often divided into sects on such matters. So what divides your religion?

For all the other fun stuff, check out the post I reference at the very beginning of the post. What are your thoughts? Was this helpful? Let me know in the comments section!