AMMON-RA, God of the Sun   - "The One True Faith"

(SJW, 25 November 2011)

Order of the Shield of Light & Templar Order of the Spears of Light - (Pandaria, Greater)

1st Level

2nd Level

3rd Level

4th Level

5th Level

6th Level

7th Level

Bless

Augury

Animate Dead

Cure Serious Wounds

Atonement +

Aerial Servant

Astral Spell

Command

Chant

Continual Light

Detect Lie +

Commune

Animate Object

Control Weather

Create Water

Detect Charm

Create Food +

Divination

Cure Critical Wounds

Blade Barrier

Earthquake

Cure Light Wounds

Find Traps

Cure Blindness

Exorcise

Dispel Evil

Conjure Animals

Gate

Detect Evil

Hold Person

Cure Disease

Lower Water +

Flame Strike

Find the Path

Holy Word +

Detect Magic +

Know Alignment +

Dispel Magic

Neutralize Poison

Insect Plague

Heal

Regeneration

Light

Resist Fire

Feign Death

Prot. from Evil 10ft r.

Plane Shift

Part Water +

Restoration

Protection from Evil

Silence 15ft r.

Glyph of Warding

Speak with Plants

Quest

Speak with Monsters

Resurrection

Purify Food +

Slow Poison

Locate Object +

Sticks to Snakes

Raise Dead

Stone Tell +

Symbol

Remove Fear

Snake Charm

Prayer

Tongues +

True Seeing

Word of Recall

Wind Walk

Resist Cold

Speak with Animals

Remove Curse

Cure Critical Wounds

Greater Command +

Banishment +

Fire Storm +

Sanctuary

Spiritual Hammer +

Bestow Curse +

Flame Strike

Righteous Might +

Heroes Feast +

Holy Aura +

Hold Undead +

Continual Light

Speak with Dead

Destroy Undead +

Wall of Fire +

-

Sunbeam +

-

Smite Evil +

Cure Serious Wounds

-

-

-

-

-

Turn Undead

Destroy Lesser Undead +

-

-

-

-

-

-

Sunburst

-

-

-

-


Special Spell Descriptions   (Spells marked + added recently).

LEVEL ONE
Hold UndeadAs AD&D Cleric 2nd-level spell Hold Person, but only undead creatures are affected. [SJW]

LEVEL TWO
Continual LightAs AD&D 3rd-level Cleric spell.
Smite Evil
Casting: Standard (4s,VSM); Range 0; Area: n/a; Duration: one attack; Save: n/a.   Next attack, if versus an opponent of evil alignment, is at x2 and does extra damage of +1 per level or a minimum of Charisma bonus (if positive). [SJW adapted from D&D3 Paladin ability]
Turn Undead
As AD&D Cleric 2nd-level spell Hold Person, but only undead creatures are affected, and will flee for 1 turn. [SJW]

LEVEL THREE
Cure Serious WoundsAs AD&D Cleric 4th-level spell, but cures 3d8 hit points and any serious injury.
Destroy Lesser Undead
As AD&D Cleric 2nd-level spell Hold Person, but only skeletons or zombies are affected, and will be destroyed. [SJW]
Sunburst
– Casting: Standard (3s, VSM); Range: 60ft + 10ft/level; Area: 20ft radius; Duration: 1second; Save: ½ (DEXx5) or Neg (INTx5).   The effect of this miracle is a blazing flash of holy golden light, in a sphere fully 40ft across. This inflicts d6 damage per level on any undead in the area (DEXx5 halves) and all creatures in or closely facing the flash must save (INTx5) or be blinded for 1 minute .

LEVEL FOUR
Cure Critical WoundsAs AD&D Cleric 5th-level spell, but cures 4d8 hit points and any critical/grievous injury.
Flame StrikeAs AD&D Cleric 5th-level spell.
Destroy Undead
As AD&D Cleric 2nd-level spell Hold Person, but only undead creatures are affected, and will be destroyed. [SJW]

LEVEL FIVE
Greater CommandAs D&D3 spell (C5).
Righteous Might
As D&D3 spell (C5).
Wall of Fire
As AD&D 5th-level Druid spell.

LEVEL SIX
BanishmentAs D&D3 spell (C6).
Heroes Feast
As D&D3 spell (C6).

LEVEL SEVEN
Fire Storm
As AD&D 7th-level Druid spell.
Holy Aura –
As D&D3 spell (C8).
Sunbeam –
As D&D3 spell (C7).

OVERVIEW
The Ammonites are an aggressive, chivalrous sect which values acts of valour, healing and good deeds. Glorious quests are frequently performed by it's Paladins to prove the superiority of the One True Faith to the heathen. Defending the weak and helpless, hunting down creatures of darkness and chaos and slaying evil are their favoured activities. This is the primary religion for nobles of feudal societies in Pandaria and nearby. Many knights and other honourable warriors follow this religion.

Deity:

Ammon-Ra, the Golden, Lord of Light, God of the Sun 

Sphere:

The Sun. Protection & Healing. Fighting Evil. 

Alignment:

Lawful Good

Symbols:

Disc/Sphere (gold) or Cross (red).

Holy Days:

Midsummer & Yule (June 22nd & December 25th)

Services:

Weekly (Sunday), at Sunrise, Noon and/or Sunset (minor services are also held daily).

Sacrifices:

Valuables, especially Gold items

Weapons:

Priests - Blunt only (maces, flails, hammers, club, staff); Paladins - Any (but only sword, spear & lance are cult).

Armour:

Any armour (preferably golden), any shield

Skills:

One Cult Weapon, Shield, Oratory, First Aid, Ride

Traits:

Brave, Pious, Just, Honest, Generous 



I. MYTHOS AND HISTORY

A. Legends

Legend states the god Ammon-Ra showed His glory as the One True God in the most ancient of days. Two rival kingdoms, named 'Moph' and 'No' in the scriptures, each worshipped their own separate ruling deities of the Sun, Ra and Ammon, respectively. Evil demons of darkness and death assailed both nations at once, intent on engulfing the entire world thereafter. But Lo! The scriptures teach that, with the words "Demons, this is a trap. We are not two gods - but one!", mighty Ammon-Ra then miraculously revealed Himself to be both of those supreme gods! Greater even than the sum of His two aspects, He released aweful Divine Power and blasted those dark and evil invaders -  His Holy Light searing them away utterly. Afterward, with awesome Divine Potency, He then fathered many gods and received worship as Lord of All from both kingdoms. His missionaries then spread as far as they could reach across the remaining world to enlighten all peoples of the debt rightfully due to Him, their saviour. 

Ammon-Ra's favourite grandson and heir Wesir (Osiris) was slain by his less-favoured brother Sutekh (Set), out of jealousy. After he was briefly raised from the dead but then killed again and dismembered, his wife Aysee (Isis) undertook a years-long quest and eventually bandaged together all the scattered pieces of his body. Her devotion and mercy so moved Ammon-Ra that He allowed her the power to effect Wesir's resurrection. Sutekh's murderous acts were found to have been incited by the evil dark god Melkor (Morgoth/Morgath), who receives eternal enmity therefore.

In the Gods War, mighty Ammon-Ra defeated so many of Melkor's orcish vassal godlings that their minions became weak with fear in His glorious light. His radiance revealed the dishonourable deeds of Loviatar's cowardly assassins and He pursued them and other vile evils relentlessly.

During the Great Battle at the beginning of time, the Law goddess Maat (Ma'at) was beset by evil Chaos. Heroic Ammon-Ra heard her cry for aid and led the lawful gods to her rescue. Healing and taking her to wife, He accepted the Lords of Law as allies and a dowry of some lesser deities for His angelic command. However some subordinates, being evil of nature, rebelled and sought to take the magic of Maat and Aysee for themselves. This wicked coven, led by devious Asmodeus and dragon-mother Tiamat, was cast down into Hell and cursed by Ammon-Ra as "devils" thereafter. 

B. History

Since time began His faithful missionaries have spread from the old kingdom of Sheba, carrying the light of the One True Faith far across the known world, notably to the kingdoms of Pandaria - Melderyn, Kaldor and, to a lesser extent, Rethem - as well as Kanday, Leonia, Algandy and numerous Little Kingdoms of Chaubrette. The praises of Ammon-Ra have been sung in gratitude for His saving the world from evil chaos and darkness. In the 'Hymn to Ammon-Ra', he is described as "Lord of Truth, Father of the Gods, Maker of Men, Creator of All Animals, Lord of Things that Are, Creator of the Staff of Life". Unceasingly, His crusading Priests and Paladin Templars have visited divine wrath upon creatures of darkness, evil and undead in every place they are found. Echoing His own words, they fall upon their enemies with holy zeal and the battle-cry "There is Only One!".

Two thousand years ago (1100BT) a vast army of darkness, goblins and their ilk, sought to invade the old kingdoms. They were saved by the "Fury of Ammon", a thousand-mile curtain of roaring sun-fire, which consumed many of the enemy and sealed the borders of Sheba. It lasted for 500 years (until 600BT), by which time the forms of worship within had become markedly different from elsewhere.

The Vermian Crusades were waged two and a half centuries ago (725-750TR), when the Patriarchs of several lands, led by Arch-Priest (later Saint) Mungo of Midgard, declared anathema the Gashians who had invaded neighbouring Dinaria. Goodly knights (and many less goodly, seeking redemption) united and, after a long campaign, eventually drove out the devil-worshipping easterners (though thereafter the lands gradually fell back to barbarism).

Sixty years ago (922-942TR), another Gashian invasion prompted the then Patriarch of Pandaria, Arch-Priest Hugo the Bald, to declare the so-called New Vermian Crusades. The invaders were finally defeated but it took 20 years, due to in-fighting between Crusaders seeking to seize land for themselves. 

Most recently, in the wars less than five years gone, devil-legions of Gash have once again invaded and taken control of much of Dinaria. Another Crusade has been mooted, but the Ammonite Church within Pandaria has problems closer to home. Worship of the dark moon-goddess Hecate has arisen within the Thardic Republic to such a degree that the True Faith has been outlawed there, the temples burned and priests exiled or slain. 

C. After Death

Souls of the faithful are rewarded in the Seven Heavens for their good deeds during life, as they bathe in the blissful illumination of Ammon-Ra Himself. Eventually the cycle of reincarnation returns them to the world to face new challenges. To ensure that their souls reach the proper destination, and their bodies are not profaned or cursed with undeath, physical remains of the departed are commonly cremated on a pyre under the Sun. The ashes are then buried or interred in catacombs in holy ground. More important worshippers will often be 'laid in state' for a while, until opportunity for them to be miraculously raised from death has passed (typically until the second Sunday after death - but perhaps more or less, depending on the season and the availability of sufficient incense). The most exalted may have their physical remains 'laid to rest' in the catacombs - however space for this is limited and so it is only possible in exceptional cases, such as for those who in life were great heroes (or great benefactors). It is sometimes possible, though rare, for priests to converse with the departed souls via these remains, or even for arch-priests to recall them to physical existence by resurrection.   

D. Symbolic Associations

The Sun-Disc (or Orb), shining and golden, or alternatively a red Cross, are the Holy Symbols of Ammon-Ra. His priests and templars wear white robes or surcoats, representing their moral purity, wherever practical. The ram and the hawk are sacred animals of the ammonite faith. The spiral  ram's-horn and hawk's-head surmounted by a sun-disk are thus also regarded as holy, symbolizing divine fertility and vigilance respectively.

II. NATURE OF THE RELIGION

A. Reason for Continued Worship

Ammon-Ra is worshipped by many of the nobility of feudal societies in Pandaria, and those who serve or aspire to join the nobility. Those who hold dear the ideals of chivalrous knighthood and/or heroic adventure also frequently favour this religion. The tenets of this faith support and justify authoritarian and elitist attitudes common to the feudal ruling classes. 

B. Social/Political Position and Power

The Orders of Light are very influential in the goodly feudal nations, because of the respect, grants and tithes bestowed upon them by the ruling class. In Pandaria, the Church of Ammon-Ra is a rich and powerful landowner due to the many estates and other gifts bequeathed by nobles keen for their immortal souls to gain the rewards of heaven. Many Ammonite clerics and templars are members of the nobility by birth, albeit lesser sons, and by taking holy orders in this way often become Priests and Paladins commanding considerable resources of the Church. 

C. Particular Likes and Dislikes

Creatures of darkness, abominations of the undead, and dragons are all traditional enemies of the Ammonite Crusaders. Healers are accorded utmost respect (though pacifist, they are still Ammonites, of a sort) and Paladins are sworn to protect them (though such protection is not always appreciated). Women are also highly respected by the Faith: honoured, protected and treated chivalrously (if of noble rank, certainly) - though rarely accepted in the Faith due to it's feudal, male-oriented, militaristic ethos, and are normally restricted to the laity. Non-humans, and humans of barbarian stock, are not often found within the ranks of the Church. Humans of ignoble birth are permitted but do not usually rise far in the hierarchy. 

III. ORGANIZATION

A. Inter-Temple Organization

Historically founded by separate missionaries, generally each nation has it's own separate Ammonite Church (though the lands within Pandaria have a somewhat closer association). Normally each national church has it's own Patriarch, or Primate, who rules his own temple and others of that kingdom with absolute divine right - just as Ammon-Ra Himself rules. As the favoured religion of the ruling classes in most feudal societies, the individual Churches of Ammon-Ra are virtually the state religion in most of these kingdoms, typically enjoying tax-free status. However there is no recognized authority between them other than the god Himself - and He seldom intervenes.

In Pandaria, the Church of Ammon-Ra is unified across the kingdoms of Melderyn and Kaldor and the principality/duchies of Rethem (though the Church is much weaker in the latter). Previously this unity also extended into the Thardic Republic, but during the recent wars the Ammonite Faith there was declared illegal and almost all temples destroyed and lands seized, rendering the Church's status moot. 

B. Internal Temple Organization

Each temple is ruled by it's own High Priest, who has absolute power over all members of the faith, subject to the blessing of the national Patriarch of course. Most temples house two distinct chapters, respectively clerical and military: the Order of the Shield of Light for Initiates/Priests and the Order of the Spears of Light for Templars/Paladins (the latter often having a separate chapter house in the temple grounds). Thus beneath the High Priest in the hierarchy are a Chief Priest and a Chief Paladin, in command of the lower-ranking clerics and templars respectively. Beneath the Chief Priest are the Priests, of varying seniority and positions such as almoner, then Deacons (initiates) and Acolytes. Subordinate to the Chief Paladin are the Templars, organized in military fashion with sergeants and other ranks as necessary. The Chief Paladin is also superior to the individual Paladins who, at his discretion, may be assigned to temple guarding or other duties - however they are most commonly given permission to operate in pursuance of Holy Quests semi-autonomously (and sometimes even granted command of their own detachment of templars). 

C. Holy Places

The Holy Land of Sheba, formed of the two ancient kingdoms wherein Ammon-Ra's legendary deeds were done, is the centre of His power in the mortal realm - but it lies far away from the lands of Pandaria. There He reigns supreme, amidst a pantheon of foreign hybrid gods, His minions and offspring. In the region of Pandaria these are largely unknown and instead He is served by an array of local Saints (see below, "VIII. A. Saint Cults"). Each has at least one holy site dedicated to veneration of their deeds, martyrdom and/or relics.

D. Holy Days

The High Holy Days of Ammon-Ra worship are Midsummer's Day (June 22nd) and Yule (December 25th), these respectively being the time of His greatest power and the time His return promises to dispel the darkness of winter. The laity give Him worship once a week, at services held on Sunday; the clergy worship every day, when at temple, holding services at sunrise, noon and sunset too.

IV. THE LAITY - ORDINARY WORSHIPPERS

A. Requirements

Ordinary worshippers form the bulk of members of this religion. They are simply required to attend services with reasonable regularity, tithe one tenth of income to the church, and make occasional sacrifices as appropriate to their social status. The nobility of Pandaria's feudal lands generally favour the Ammonite church with their worship and patronage but commoners are also permitted to worship and many do, as it pleases their lords. All races 'under the Sun' are permitted to worship - this grudgingly includes dwarves and elves but typically excludes goblins and their ilk (although rarely an exceptional individual of part-orcish stock may be accepted).

B. Restrictions

Worshippers are expected to work loyally in service to their allotted lord. In their life they should obey restrictions laid down by the prayer of The Negative Confession (sometimes known as the 42 Negations, or Declaration of Innocence), from the Book of Going Forth By Day (also called the Book of the Dead). When they fall short of this ideal, transgressions must be confessed to the priests and forgiven by paying suitable penance.

C. Benefits

Worshippers come under the protection of the Church and Paladins are sworn to defend them - an important benefit in a violent world. The poorest worshippers may receive alms from time to time. The better-off can purchase training in cult skills [normally £200/week]. Well-established worshippers in good standing may also request miraculous interventions from their priests - for appropriate donations, of course [£400xLevel2]. 

V. THE CLERGY - PRIESTS, INITIATES & ACOLYTES

A. Requirements

Those who seek to take Holy Orders in the service of the Church must first become acolytes. Only those who show above-average devotion to the Faith, and who are free or given personally by their lord or master, will be accepted. They should be known to their sponsoring priest as respectable worshippers for at least one full year. Normally acolytes must be young male humans - though older, part-human or female supplicants may be admitted in special cases. Acolytes undergo several years religious instruction, physical training and menial servitude to prepare them and assess their worthiness for initiation. 

Those worthy to be initiated as clerics of Ammon-Ra must have a modicum of mental rigour, must not lack physical strength nor health nor comeliness, nor be an idiot [Wis 9+; Str,Con,Cha,Int 6+]. They must be competent [1cc-worth] in at least one cult-favoured weapon of a suitable type (i.e. blunt) [Mace, Flail, Hammer, Club, Staff] and at least one other cult skill [Shield, Oratory, First Aid, Ride]. They must have allegiance to goodness and order [LG] evident from their personal traits, preferably cult virtues [Brave, Pious, Just, Honest, Generous]. In training they will also have had opportunity to learn various other priestly skills [Singing, Insight, Celestial (the temple tongue), Ancient Sheban & Hieroglyphics].

During their initiation ceremony, new clerics are gifted with a weapon, shield, armour and holy symbol. (In practice, prospective initiates are required to provide these to the presiding priest beforehand. Cheap items - clubs, staves, less than ring-mail armour - are not normally acceptable. Hence those of poor background can find themselves limited to acolyte status). 

Progress through the hierarchy of the Church, into the ranks of the Priesthood, is marked by similar ceremonies at each stage of authority, reflecting spiritual development: 0.Acolyte; 1.Initiate; 2.Lesser Priest; 3.Priest; 4.Superior Priest; 5.High Priest; 6.Superior High Priest; 7.Arch-Priest. [Each rank corresponding to the maximum miracle level they can invoke.]. The Patriarch for a nation is appointed from amongst the highest-ranking priests at the time the position falls vacant, by their mutual agreement, and held for life. (That is, if the Patriarch dies and is raised/resurrected a new appointment must be made, though it is normally a formality to re-appoint the returned Patriarch if he is still of at least equal highest clerical rank.) 

B. Restrictions

Clerics of Ammon-Ra must work for the Temple, as instructed by their superiors within the hierarchy of the Church. This normally involves conducting thrice-daily services and ceremonies, overseeing maintenance/repair of arms & armour, obtaining temple supplies, distributing alms, collecting tithes and performing training and minor miracles for deserving worshippers. Alternatively they may also be sent out from the Temple on other duties, such as attending outlying churches, chapels or shrines. 

Sometimes Priests and even Initiates may be allowed a roving mission to pursue the aims of the Church in a similar manner to Paladins upon Holy Quests. This is in order not only to smite evil but also provides spiritual guidance to any mercenaries or others with whom they may associate.

Adventurer clerics are still working for their Temple, however, so any earnings or donations received are property of the Church. They are permitted to use these monies to meet expenses while away on such missions, but are duty bound to give the Temple (or an outlying church/chapel) the remainder at their earliest opportunity. Private wealth - from estates, chattels or family - remains their own, subject merely to the normal 10% tithe. 

Initiates & Priests may only wield blunt weapons (typically maces) but may wear any sort of armour. They are expected to cultivate the cult-favoured traits and therefore should avoid behaviour of the opposite kind. They must also practice the favoured martial skills, preaching, riding and first aid.

C. Benefits

The ceremony of initiation creates a link to the astral realm. Once initiated, a cleric thus gains access to spiritual Power [initially Wis/2] and has the right to invoke wondrous miracles [Wis x5% chance], typically via interceding saints, in service of the Lord of Light.

Ammonite clerics who are sufficient in the favoured cult traits [all five 20%+] can gain the special ability to Detect Evil at will, through undertaking a Quest just as paladins. (Some do so as part of their initiate training).

Food and board is provided to clerics (and templars/paladins), in return for service, from any chapel, church or temple. 

Ransoms will be paid for priests or initiates by their temple, at a moderate rate (100 gold pieces [£2000] per Rank, subject to local variations and circumstances) unless the individual has deposited greater funds. Rescue, perhaps by questing Paladins, is preferred in many cases. Any ransoms paid from temple funds must be repaid, from private wealth (i.e. estates, etc). 

Priests may be raised from the dead, at the discretion of their High Priest. Typically this will only be done if they have previously requested it and made sufficient donations (from private wealth), or are especially favoured, or, conversely, need to make penance in order to redeem their soul.

Priests frequently act as advisors to individual members of the nobility, particularly in matters with spiritual relevance. Resolution of disputes between nobles remains strictly the prerogative of their feudal overlord, however.

Clerics may purchase training in cult skills at half the normal rate [i.e. normally £100/week], but there is no reduction in donations expected for miracles obtained from the temple [i.e. still £400xLevel2].

VI. THE TEMPLARS - PALADINS

A. Requirements

Those believing they have vocations as holy warriors must first join the Church as temple guards, called Templars. Most remain as such. Only those showing the utmost devotion and potential can progress to join the ranks of the ultimate holy warriors - the Paladins. Paladins have the privilege of undertaking the most dangerous and hence most glorious Quests.

To be accepted as Templars, supplicants must satisfy conditions similar to those of prospective acolytes. Initially they undergo years of martial and physical training, and receive copious religious instruction in addition to their guarding duties. 

Candidates for initiation into Paladinhood must have superior appeal, be of above average mental and physical strength, at least moderately intelligent and fit, and not too clumsy [Cha 15+; Wis 13+; Str 12+; Int,Con 9+; Dex 6+]. During their years as Templars they must have shown fanatical devotion to the Faith, have spirituality and allegiance similar to priests [Holiness, LG], have proven their competence [1cc] with Sword, Spear or priestly weapon and at least one other cult skill [Shield, Oratory, First Aid, Ride] (they may also have learned other priestly skills). Moreover they must demonstrate all the favoured traits, being Brave, Pious, Just, Honest and Generous [to 10%+]. To be finally initiated, Paladins must also complete a Holy Quest (see below, "C. Benefits").

There are no formal social class limitations but, as for clerics, prospective Paladins are required to supply their own arms and armour, and additionally a mount, to a befitting standard. Those of poorer backgrounds can find this a surpassing challenge.

B. Restrictions

Templars are normally required to spend all their time guarding the Temple, or on similar duties as assigned by the Chief Paladin. Those of Paladin rank are permitted to undertake holy quests, largely as and when they see fit - obtaining the Chief Paladin's permission is normally a mere formality. 

Law and good deeds are the meat and drink of the Paladins. If they ever knowingly perform an act which is chaotic in nature they must seek a Priest of the Faith, Superior or higher in rank, confess their sin, and do penance as prescribed by the cleric. If a Paladin should ever knowingly and willingly perform an evil act, he loses the status of paladinhood immediately and irrevocably. All benefits are then lost and no deed or magic can restore them. All Paladins must be committed to law and good and always remain so or absolutely lose all of the special powers which are given to them.

The following strictures apply to Paladins: They may never retain more than ten magic items, which may never exceed: one suit of armour, one shield, four weapons (bow & arrows are considered but one); any four other magic items. They will never retain wealth, keeping only sufficient treasures to support themselves in a modest manner, pay henchmen, men-at-arms and servitors, and to construct or maintain a small castle. Excess is given away, as is the tithe. An immediate tithe (at least one tenth, but usually much more) of all income - be it treasure, wages or whatever - must be given to whatever charitable institution of the Church the paladin selects. Paladins will have henchmen of Ammonite faith and none other; they will associate only with characters and creatures of good allegiance; Paladins can join a company of adventurers which contains non-evil neutrals only on a single-expedition basis, and only if some end which will further the cause of law and good is purposed. Paladins will take service or form alliance only with lawful and good persons who, if possible, are clerics or warriors of noble status.

Paladins should behave with utmost chivalry and honour at all times: issuing challenges before combat, not striking foes that are prone or unawares or surrendered, defending weak and helpless innocents, and so forth. Exempted from this are creatures of darkness, undead, demons and especially devils - who can expect to hear nothing before their destruction but the battle-cry "There is Only One!".

C. Benefits

The Holy Quest, which a Paladin completes to become initiated, attunes them to the heavenly plane and allows the miraculous power to Detect Evil at will. When initiated a Paladin gains spiritual Power [initially Cha/2], with which to perform these miracles. Paladins are granted these miraculous effects at will, instantly and automatically [free action, once/round], without need for the rituals which clerics perform, but at the usual power cost.

Further such abilities can be gained by Questing, however the Paladin must permanently sacrifice Power equal to the level of miracle gained. [Miracles up to one level per 20% in all cult traits & skills can be gained]. These Holy Quests are usually revealed through prayer or visions, and are almost invariably of a heroic and martial nature. The Paladin chooses the miracle sought, and this typically determines the form of Quest to be undertaken. Miraculous abilities frequently chosen by Paladins include Protection From Evil, Cure Wounds (of various sorts), Turn Undead & Cure Disease. Questing Paladins also have the following alternatives to cult miracles: Holy Steed (3rd level) - may quest for a magical warhorse, up to once per ten years; Holy Sword (4th level) - may quest for a magical 'holy avenger' sword; Holy Miracles (5th level) - may invoke miracles in clerical manner.

As for clerics, templars and paladins can receive food and board from any chapel, church or temple, and a moderate ransom if necessary. Paladins and templars may also purchase extra training in cult skills at half normal rate, and miracles for normal donations, as for clerics. Slain Paladins will normally be raised from the dead, or even resurrected, if they have requested this and donated sufficient funds beforehand (hence frequently donating as much as 90% of their available wealth when tithing).   

VII. CULT MAGIC

A. Special Spells

Turn Undead: (C1) C: Standard (4s,VSM); R 0; A: 30ft in front; D: 1turn; ST: Neg (WISx5). 
Undead in the area of effect must save or flee from a holy symbol boldly presented by the caster.

Sunburst: (C3) Std (3s, VSM); R: 60ft + 10ft/lvl; A: 20ft r.; D: 1s; ST: ½ (DEXx5). 
The effect of this miracle is a blazing flash of holy golden light, in a sphere fully 40ft across. This inflicts d6 damage per level on any undead in the area (halved if they save); and all creatures in or closely facing the flash must save (INTx5) or be blinded for 1 minute .

B. Divine Intervention

Ammonite Priests and Paladins receive divine aid with surprising frequency [Holiness%]. However, when they do they are expected to perform a Holy Quest. Divine intervention can take many forms, from minor miracles right up to manifestations of angelic beings or even saints.

VIII. SUBSERVIENT RELIGIONS

A. Saint Cults

Over the millennia, many heroes and martyrs of the Ammonite Faith have been declared as Saints, receiving veneration virtually as minor deities in their own right. Some are even allied deities from other worlds or pantheons, respectfully declared subservient to Ammon-Ra within His own realm.

These include: St.Mykal & St.Jorge, the Dragonslayers; St.Anubis, Protector of the Dead; St.Mabella of the Crawling Curse; St.Bemonté Chaos-Killer, Martyr of Shiran; St.Tionery, Patron of Administrators; St.Sigmar, the  Light Bearer; St.Ukko of the Lordly Griffins; and many more.

Some saints grant unusual powers to their particular devotees - but also impose special restrictions or requirements upon them.

For example: Luwey Bemonté, about his 20th year, was among the Ammonite clerics despicably driven from the Shiran Temple by evil Morgothian fanatics during the Balshan Jihad in 564TR. He fought heroically for many years, harrying the Theocracy of Tekhos which followed, as leader of the unjustly outlawed 'Silver Priests'. After Tekhos' death, High Priest Bemonté's Ammonites re-entered Shiran in 589TR, rebuilding and reconsecrating the Temple. There followed many years hard fighting as Bemonté defended his new church with ruthless strength against constant attacks by Chaotic enemies, during this time famously vowing to “never soften the sinews with that dousing element” (water). Thus strengthened, he crushed all these attackers and earned the epithet 'Chaos-Killer'. In 609TR, elderly Arch-Priest Bemonté was martyred by murderous Morgothians seeking to desecrate the Temple - but when they approached the altar, his vengeful spirit appeared in holy light and burned their bodies to ash where they stood. Then his relics - bones, mace, mail, rod and chalice - were interred in the catacombs, by a shrine which thereafter produced miraculous holy wafers, confirming his sainthood. Saint Bemonté is said to grant exceeding strength to adherents of his famed vow.

IX. OTHER RELIGIONS

A. Associated (Preferred)

Healers: The Healers hold to an alternative version of Ammonite faith. As pacifists, they disapprove of the aggressive Ammon-Ra crusaders. Followers of Ammon-Ra allow this, believing the Healers simply worship an old-fashioned aspect of Ammon which dates from before He revealed the need to fight and destroy evil.

B. Friendly (Goodwill)

Law: Ammon-Ra is married to Maat, a Lady of Law, embodiment of the principle of Order. Their marriage sealed an eternal alliance between Ammon-Ra and the unchanging Lords of Law.

Valar: The Elvish Powers are viewed as individualistic but not truly chaotic. Just as elves are treated as nobles in human lands, the elven gods are respected as peers and oft-times goodly allies of Ammon-Ra.

C. Neutral (Tolerance)

Hecate: Until recent years, this lunar goddess has been of little concern to the faithful of Ammon-Ra. But the recent sudden rise of her fanatical worship, primarily within the Thardic Republic, has led to the imprisonment or slaughter of priests, burning of temples and outlawry of the True Faith. The Ammonite Church has no prescribed reaction to these unprecedented outrages. Most believe the Hecatian mage-priests and their followers to be possessed by demons or devils - hopefully only temporarily.

D. Hostile (Antipathy)

Chaos: Followers of Ammon-Ra uphold the theological requirement to oppose chaotic acts and creatures. Paladins' vows forbid them to associate with such. Chaotics are normally only actively hunted if their chaotic nature is combined with evil, however. 

Melkor/Orcish: Orcs and their ilk are branded 'creatures of darkness', as are other vassals of Morgoth, the Black Enemy, including werewolves, vampires and undead. All these are routinely hunted down by Paladins performing Holy Quests.

Loviatar: Assassins of the Mistress of Pain are held in utter contempt and executed whenever caught. Their deeds and purposes are always dark and dishonourable, but shrivel to nothing when revealed in His glorious light. 

E. Enemy (Hatred)

Demons: Demons personify the antithesis of Ammonite righteousness - some argue such creatures only exist in order to be destroyed by the Pure.

Devils: Traitors to the Faith, these vile creatures and their minions must be rooted out and destroyed wherever they lurk.

X. MISCELLANEOUS NOTES

A. Divine Genealogy




B. Divine Retribution

Initiates of Ammon-Ra, including Priests and Paladins, who offend against strictures of the One True Faith may find that invocations they make for miracles will fail, until the sins they have committed are confessed and penance duly made. More serious transgressions could result in Flame Strike, perhaps every day, until a surpassingly dangerous Holy Quest is undertaken by way of atonement.