Although the Lunar Empire bears less resemblance to the society presented in GRoY than folk often assume, one thing that has been present in Peloria since Time began is the split between the urbane Dara Happan culture and the rural peasantry. Any discussion of Peloria needs to recognize the distinction between the urbane city folk along the Oslir River (or in Glamour) and the mass of peasants who have always grown rice and barley (and for the last several centuries maize as well).
There are about 5.4 million people in the Lunar Heartlands and about 80% of them are rural peasants. Although many peasants have embraced the Lunar Way (in particular the Seven Mothers), they still retain much of their traditional peasant culture. They are “semi-free” at best, bound to their professions and working land that belongs to others (usually temples or the Yelmic/Lunar nobility). Many are “property” of these groups. They live in villages overseen by officials appointed by their rulers. Villages are highly collective; there are strong pressures to conform and little room to deviate from custom (except through the Lunar Way).
Think Egyptian fellah, Russian serfs, or Japanese heimin.
Pelorian peasant culture is notoriously sensual, carnal, and sometimes cruel. Open debauchery and drunkenness is quite common, especially when compared with the Dara Happan norms. The Lodril cult is famed for the great drunken mobs that swarm the streets on his holy days. Worship always includes intoxicating drinks, and often involves sacrifice to a giant phallus (the symbol of the god). Oria the Grain Goddess is the other main traditional cult. She is viewed as licentious by the Dara Happan rulers – although she is Lodril’s consort, she has as many lovers as he. Almost every peasant is a lay member of Oria, but comparatively few (maybe 1 in four women) are initiates.
Lodril and Oria are traditional and provide comparatively little opportunities for spiritual development or other opportunities. The Seven Mothers have stepped into that role. Virtually everyone is a lay member of the Seven Mothers in the Lunar Heartlands, and perhaps a quarter or more of the peasantry is initiated into the Lunar Way. Seven Mothers initiates have greater legal rights and recourses than others, moderating the harsh edges of peasant life and providing spiritual outlets.
Something also worth keeping in mind – until relatively recently, the peasants actually spoke a different language from their rulers! Now they can both speak in New Pelorian, but in the past, few Dara Happans could speak with a rural peasant beyond a few basic commands.
Is the Yelmalio cult a thing in late Third Age Peloria? Or is he exclusively a frontier god? Within the Heartlands, Yelmalio is usually just a subcult of Yelm. But in the Lunar Provinces (which are culturally different), Yelmalio is an important frontier god.
Is Oria just the local grain goddess in Peloria? Or is she equivalent to someone else like Ernalda or Esrola? The Grain Goddess. Same as Esrola.