Monday, December 28, 2009

Temple Theology, Encounters and Events


Temples can often use some tables to help a DM to handle encounters and mood setting for a series of encounters at a temple, and quickly have some ideas for characters and what's going on while player characters are visiting a particular temple. There are some questions to think about and some atmosphere to consider as the DM sets about sketching out a Temple Profile.

What is the temple's general philosophy and dominant theological stance? These things can be of primary importance in a campaign when determining how priests, priestesses, other clergy and staff respond to others--not merely of different religions--but even of the same religion, but with differing views philosophically and theologically. They can determine--or significantly influence many aspects of the economy, politics, social and religious life, as well as diplomatic relations, and even foreign relations and warfare.

Historically, religions are generally very conservative, and fully support the status quo. Most religions, if not immediately at their founding and development, soon grow to become closely linked and interwoven with whatever the ruling government is to maintain its own protection, power, wealth and status, as well as influences over the entire population. Most religions are relatively slow to change philosophies, theology, and social and governing structure. Most are quite hostile to those seeking change, as well as radical ideas and new ways of theological interpretation. Most religions gladly embrace and cherish various traditions and rituals that have specific patterns, directions, styles and forms that have been in place for generations, even centuries. Having said that, throughout history, in whatever region, there have always been various religious believers that have not embraced the whole official dogma, and have insisted on doing things their own way, with their own particular interpretation, forms, and style.

Temple Philosophy and Theological Stance
01-25%: Temple is Staunchly Conservative, Strict Theology
26-35%: Temple is Staunchly Moderate, Flexible Theology
36-45%: Temple is Staunchly Liberal, Open Theology
46-70%: Temple is Generally Conservative, Strict Theology
71-80%: Temple is Generally Moderate, Flexible Theology
81-90%: Temple is Generally Liberal, Open Theology
91-95%: Temple Officially Embraces Position; though secretly embraces heresy.
96-00%: Temple Openly Embraces Heresy

Temple Events and Encounters
01-05% Routine Religious Services
06-10% Preparing Religious Services
11-15% Prayer and Meditation
16-20% Physical Labor and Training
21-25% Outreach and Charity Work
26-30% Social Services Work
31-35% Philosophical/Theological Debate
36-40% Sponsor New Artist/Artistic Project
41-45% Sponsor New Craftsman/Building Project
46-50% Experience Academic/Research Discovery
51-55% Welcome Arriving Religious Dignitary
56-60% Conduct Religious Court Inquiry/Trial
61-65% Experience Divine Blessing
66-70% Experience Spiritual/Magical Disaster
71-75% Experience Criminal Event
76-80% Time of Great Awakening
81-85% Special Seasonal Preparations
86-90% Special Seasonal Celebration
91-95% Great Caravan of Pilgrims Arrive
96-00% Divine Creature/Divine Event

Stay tuned to this article, as I plan on expanding this article tomorrow and providing more details and discussion.

Semper Fidelis,



  1. Excellent post, squire.
    I recall seeing about 50 billion awesome posts by you on ENWorld and I am glad to see you have a blog going and picking up speed.