The Lunar Empire has brought peace to Peloria for the last century and a half. The Red Goddess religion facilitates spiritual and individual development for those able to do so, while maintaining the traditions of those who need them. By all accounts, the Lunar Heartland in the 7th Wane is accounted one of the most civilized, peaceful, and safe places in all of Glorantha. And yet, the Red Goddess is a cosmic threat. She is every bit as dangerous as the possibilities created by Nysalor. If anything Her Way is even more dangerous as many have already begun to experiment with the most dangerous potentialities. Lunar heroquesters – most notably Jar-eel the Razoress – have explored forbidden paths and plundered the Other World as ruthlessly as any God Learner. Some philosophers suggest that this is Gbaji – not an entity, not a cult, but an approach to the cosmos facilitated by Illumination.
Like with the Gbaji Wars, those who oppose the Red Goddess will adopt her own methods to defeat her and change the world in the process. This is the oldest story in Glorantha, and is the story of the Hero Wars.
Like Prometheus, the Red Goddess has given mortals nuclear fire.
Maybe it is not the Red Goddess herself that is the threat.
Thinking there is a “final victory” at all involved in this is debatable. She waxes. She wanes. She wins. She loses. That’s the nature of the moon.The Storm rages, destroys, clears the stage for what comes next. And then there is calm. Until the next storm.
There is no “good guy” or “bad guy” here. Just a cosmic cycle that – in large part because of the exploratory heroquesting started by the Red Goddess – is going to summon armies and heroes who will fight over causes of their own.
I don’t think the Red Goddess is being “manipulated”. She opens a door and points at a path – one with great spiritual rewards for those who can carefully walk it with respect and humility, but one that poses terrible dangers for those that do not.
Like all apotheosised beings, I am not sure the Red Goddess has a Master Plan beyond her apotheosis. She shows a Way, she Turns, she Waxes and she Wanes.
Her followers, on the other hand, have plenty of plans.
But like Orlanth (and Arkat for that matter) she is part of the divine realm now. There’s no Prof. Diggs behind the Moon.
Has also been four centuries since she ascended. A lot has changed, but she has not.
Any more than Orlanth has a master plan at play here. The Destroyer hates Chaos and upholds the Cosmic Compromise, and gets summoned when either get pushed. That’s not a plan – good Malkioni can see that as a predictable cosmic phenomenon.
What matters are the what their mortal followers do with all of this.
I want to know more about the White Moon followers and the Arrolians, to me any religion linked so closely to an Empire is unsound and they indicate a more humanist (possibly?) path than that of the Lunar Empire?
Like the New Hrestoli, the Arrolians have been under the Ban for a century. Cooped up in their bubbles – remember that Riverjoin had no communication with Eastpoint for all that time.Like all the Fronelan communities under the Ban, I expect that Riverjoin and Eastpoint became echo chambers. Interesting to see what they became.
Jar-eel is a big time exploratory hero quester. Maybe for the non-illuminated, the Lunar Way is relatively institutionalised, but they are the followers not the leaders. For those with their eyes open, Jar-eel is showing possibilities not imagined since the Goddess Quest.