Yelmalio vs Elmal

Submitted by WoeRie on Sat, 01/06/2013 – 08:25

Glorantha Discussions

I’m a bit confused with Yelmalio and Elmal. If I look in the Sartar book (and Heortling Mythology) it points out that some Sartar clans worship Elmal, but reading in Wyrms Footnotes (which is the latest source) it shows all Elmal sources as Yelmalio. Though I assume that both gods are more or less the same, this still looks strange for me. So, which source is right from an Orlanthi point of view? Thanks in advance..

Enlightenment 😉

Submitted by Charles on Sat, 01/06/2013 – 09:23.

Start with The Birth of Elmal (or, Why I screwed up your Glorantha).

Yelmalio is originally a Pelorian god. He is variously said to be Lightfore, the planet that traverses the sky when Yelm is traversing the underworld at night; or the light of the sun, without the fire. Both can be true at the same time. And there is much more to Yelmalio than even most Yelmalio worshippers know.
Elmal is the Orlanthi god of the sun and horses, who left the Fire Tribe to join the much greater and more honorable Storm Tribe.
As the Dara Happans and Orlanthi interacted in South Peloria and Saird, many Elmal worshippers found that there were more attactive aspects of worshipping Yelmalio, not least the giving up of the idea that they were worshipping a second class god, the “Loyal Thane”.
This change in belief spread to Sartar and there was a mass conversion of many but not all Elmal worshippers to Yelmalio.
But back to the differences and similarities between Yelmalio and Elmal. They are different. They are the same. Both are true. There will be many Elmal worshippers and Yelmalio worshippers quite willing to fight to the death to maintain their belief that they are different. There may be some Yelmalio worshippers (and may be, possibly, some Elmal worshippers) quite willing to admit that they are the same god, with different worshippers and different forms of worship.
The key message. If you look for a single core truth about gods and/or cultures in Glorantha, you will often come to erroneous conclusions.

Submitted by WoeRie on Sat, 01/06/2013 – 12:52.

Many thanks for the detailed explanation (and for the link). I think I understood the similarieties and differences of these two gods, now… and how they are viewed by the different cultures.

on the subject of “truth”

Submitted by Charles on Sat, 01/06/2013 – 11:10.

It is worth looking at the page where Greg answers questions about Illusion. Towards the end of the page he notes:
Orenoar is Truth. As all the myths tell, she is no longer of this world. In other words, we can not know absolute truth, only subjective truth.
Orenoar was the original Truth Rune or its creator or both.

Submitted by Adept on Mon, 03/06/2013 – 18:28.

I feel rather occluded having read Greg’s text about the nature of [[Illusion]]. Food for thought, certainly, but I feel a magician with the illusion rune doesn’t actually have access to such all-powerful powers. All of magic can ultimately be illusion, but the specific effects of a magicians connection to the illusion rune probably are much more limited.Greg replies to the question of an illusionist having created a death sword, and it then actually being (temporarily) as much a death sword as that created by a Humakti. This is all well and good, but I would probably say that most illusion rune magicians can’t actually do that. Illusion rune isn’t the omni rune that enables you to duplicate the powers of any other rune.

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