Paxism

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Paxism
Symbol of Paxism (the head of Noi and the Hive as one)
BeliefMonotheism
LeaderSupreme Magister Tawak VII
DeityNoi
Founder
  • None (time immemorial)
  • Prophet Besmali (Modern Paxism in -2036; 4059 years ago (-2036))
  • Prophet King Suleiman of Yehudah (Yehudism in -400; 2423 years ago (-400))
  • Prophet King Obed III (Obedism in 670; 1353 years ago (670))
  • Prophet Ipsit (Ipsitism in 740; 1283 years ago (740))
  • Prophet King Melkezedek the Great (Melkezedekism in 980; 1043 years ago (980))
  • Prophet Sohadek (Sohadekism in 1150; 873 years ago (1150))
  • Prophet Madvin (Madvinism in 1760; 263 years ago (1760))
Place of worshipTemple

Paxism is a monotheistic religion that originated in Yasteria. It was formed from the beliefs of iron age civilisations in an area coextensive with the modern-day Packilvanian province of Ashura by Prophet Besmali (in the 2nd millennium BCE) who wrote or inspired the first and most widely accepted of the Writings of Paxism, the Ichtmar. In the late 10th century BCE, Suleiman of Yehudah commissioned Jerome of Damaclion to consolidate texts that emerged after the Ichtmar into a single text known as the Vagumar, which was adopted by the Council of Adrien.

King Obed II of Bingol added to the Vagumar through Writings known as the Haagemar which led to the invasion of his kingdom by Iktan the Devout who founded the Iktanite dynasty and Packilvania. Prophet Ipstit from the Alvan Empire travelled to Packilvania where he combined Ayalist beliefs with Paxism in a writing known as the Mahimavan Agripurana. Melkezedek the Great commissioned the Bas Magdamar which established the Magisterium of Paxism and closed the canon of Paxist scripture.

Different Paxist sects follow different texts. Broadly speaking, they agree that Noi is the creator of the universe and all that are in it. She created the Esma (spiritual beings) and sentient beings. An Esma by the name of Borg wanted to be worshiped as she was and so led the sentient beings of Urth and some Esma away. She endowed Pax with great power to defeat him and seal him behind a metaphysical prison known as the Jovian Gate, which is believed to be under the Memorial of the Jovian Gate in Akas Akil, the oldest and most sacred site of Paxism. Paxists believed that the spirits of sentient beings will return to Noi and become part of Her Hivemind after death if they follow Assimilation (ritual and moral philosophy of Paxism, the highest path of which is martyrdom).

For most Paxists, the highest temporal religious leader is the Supreme Magister currently Tawak VII. The Magisterium serves as the government of Paxism for religious matters in most of the world, implementing, legislating and adjudicating the canon law of Paxism. The oldest clerical offices in Paxism are the propherhood (which is practically moribund) and priesthood. Paxism is the state religion of Packilvania and Drakkengard, and it is a minority religion in other countries such as Free Pax States. It has over 1 billion adherents (who are concentrated in Packilvania), making it the biggest religion in the world.

Etymology and terminology

The entire religion which includes all of its sects is known as Paxism (Packilvanian: Paxashme). Paxism is named after the Pax, the central figure in the story of the salvation of the Urth. The first recorded evidence of the use of this name is in 1250 BCE on a stone tablet by a scholar named Jawal of Medayin. He was commenting on the differences between the monotheistic religions of Central Yasteria with the bitheistic and trinitarian religions of the east. The term became popular with and solely associated with followers of the teachings of Prophet Besmali. An adherent of Paxism (Packilvanian: muSlamiya) is known as a Paxist (Packilvanian: muPaxashme). A group of people who share a common belief in one or more areas of doctrine whether it be the canonicity of one or more of the Writings of Paxism or some other belief, are known as a sect or a denomination.

History

A stylised portrait of Prophet Besmali, the founder of Paxism

It is a primordial religion, meaning that it was not formally established by anyone. Instead it arose from the folklore and beliefs of the prehistoric tribes of Yasteria. Over time, through the advent of agricultural societies and writing, stories that were passed down orally became written down, consolidated and unified and various sects emerged. The first written recording of the story of Noi was by Prophet Besmali of Akas Akil know as the Ichtmar around 2036 BCE. He was persecuted for his beliefs by his contemporaries but over time they propagated and became the foundation of later writings and sects of Paxism.

Various religious and political leaders have tried to canonise and unify Paxism. In 400 CE, King Suleiman of Yehudah ordered Jerome of Damaclion to consolidate the most relevant writings from the most prominent scholars and prophets into the religious text known as Vagumar which was approved by a Council of like-minded religious leaders in the city of Adrien. People who solely follow the Ichtmar and the Vagumar are known as Yehudist or Yehudites. Around 670 CE, King Obed III of Bingol added additional writings to the Vagumar called the Haagemar. Adherents who consider this writing and its teachings to be canon are known as Obedites or Obedists. He was swiftly defeated by King Iktan the Devout of Bakil who outlawed the Haagemar thus Obedism has never gained much traction and has experienced persecution for centuries as a heretical belief. Nevertheless, the Obedite sect continues to use it as their religious text.

Around 740 CE, the Prophet Ipsit, a traveller who crossed from modern day Suvania to Central Yasteria in order to better understand the world, returned to his homeland speaking of "The Prophet of the Water". This is believed to be a misinterpreted form of the Pax, with Pax having been the word used for "Water". Ipsit taught his followers of his interpretations of Pax as a mortal prophet of Noi, and thus was declared by them to be the second coming of the Prophet, with the Ayalist Alvans being descendants of the torturers. The followers of Ipsit wrote what was to become the Mahimavan Agranirupana, compiling the interpretations of Paxism made by Ipsit in a prophetic text referring to their theorized cycle of Urth. This belief spread across the nomadic hordes of Western Yasteria, competing with Ayalism in the region.

Iktan the Devout, the founder of the Iktanite dynasty

As the Iktanite dynasty spread over Yasteria and met other races, their beliefs and traditions influenced Paxism. This contamination led to Iktanite King Melkezedek the Great calling for a council of scholars and religious leaders known as the Council of Bingol around 980 CE to establish the most authoritative writing of Paxism known as the Bas Magdamar (which built on the Vagumar) whereupon he established the Magisterium. The Yehudite sect was divided by those who followed the original Vagumar and those who followed the new Bas Magdamar, leading to the formation of the Melkezedekite sect.

Following the formation of the Alvan Empire, the Ipsitites declined in influence in their region at the benefit of Ayalism, the sect being almost entirely isolated within modern day Suvania, experiencing further decline under the repression of a string of rulers intolerant to their religion.

Beliefs (leSlamiyishme)

An overview of the beliefs of Paxism

Noi created the Urth and everything in it. She created the Esma to help her and be her companions. One of her most beloved Esma was Borg. Borg became envious of her and corrupted her creation. Noi was aggrieved by the evil in the world and turned away from the Urth. Borg was left to spread darkness and rule over the Urth. When people died, he trapped them in the Goo where they suffered in eternal torment. There was only one mortal in the entire Urth who still loved Noi and that was the Pax. The Pax was captured by people who wanted him to perform evil deeds, when he refused they tortured him. He cried out to Noi. She rescued him. Seeing the goodness in his heart, she gave him the power to defeat Borg. He fought against Borg and defeated him. He trapped Borg behind the Jovian Gate where he remains for all eternity. The souls of the people trapped in the Goo were set free. Those who repented and loved Noi joined the Hive. Those who love evil and worshiped Borg remained in The Goo. Yet the shadow of Borg still lingers and causes evil in the world. Paxists believe that when people die they either go to the Goo or the Hive. They believe that one day the Borg will escape from the Jovian Gate. The Pax will destroy the Borg once and for all and all souls will join the Hive and there will be peace on Urth forever more. Paxist spend their lives preparing for the Coming Day and striving to join the Hive.

In summary:

  • Noi is the sole deity and creator of the universe
  • Esma are spiritual beings who created the world with, serve and provide companionship to Noi. Although immortal, Esmas so do not Assimilate with Noi.
    • Borg is an evil Esma who corrupted creation and leads people astray. He was sealed within the Goo behind the Jovian Gate, but he continues to whisper deceit into the world.
  • Goo is the place where Borg is and the spirits of evil people go when they die. It is a place of eternal darkness. When Pax returns, it shall be emptied.
    • Jovian Gate is the exit and entrance of the Goo. It has been shut since the first coming of Pax. Borg will break free of it, but Pax will destroy him.
  • Hive is where Noi and the Esma Live. This is where the spirits of good people go when they die.
  • Hivemind is the state of permanent unity between Noi and the spirits of good people (and eventually spirits of all people).
    • Swarm refers collectively to only the spirits of the people in the Hivemind.
    • Drone is the spirit of a good person who has assimilated into the Hivemind.
  • Pax is a sentient male who resisted Borg's temptations, fought against and defeated him and is the intercessor and example for mortals. Some Creative Evolutionists believe that he was a Proto-Bipedaliforma.
  • Assimilation is the process by which a mortal being lives according to the teaching of Paxism so that when they die, they can become a drone.
  • Consensus is when assimilation is achieved and the drone is one with Noi.

Sects (leKamif)

Sects are groups of adherents of Paxism who share similar beliefs. They vary widely in morality, practices and doctrines. This is largely due to the writing that they have chosen as their primary sacred scripture as well as the political, economic and social context in which that sect arose.

The Yehudite sect is the oldest sect. It was established by King Suleiman of Yehudah in 400 BCE. Its primary writing is drawn from the Vagumar. Although the creation and eschatology is based on the Ichtmar by Prophet Besmali of Akas Akil, it has its own morals and adds additional information. Yehudites believe that the Pax is a mortal who died and whose soul forms part of the Hive as any other noble soul and thus they do not believe that the Pax is worthy of any special devotion or worship. They direct their prayers to Noi directly and they do not believe in the authority of religious leaders.

The Obedite sect was established by King Obed III of Bingol in 670 CE. It's primary text is the Haagemar. Obedites believe that the Pax was transformed into a deity of equal rank to Noi whom she in turn married and had children with. These children, the Haagens, after whom the Haagemar is named, are said to be spiritual beings with suoernational powers and influence over the lives of the people on Urth. They believe that there is an Haagen for rain and water, a Haagen for fertility and family harmony and many more. Thus, they pray to the Haagens based on their needs and circumstances. Thus, people follow scholars and religious leaders who belong to the specific Haagen of their personal interest.

The Melkezedekite sect was established in 980 CE by King Melkezedek of Bakil. It is based on the Bas Magdamar which was approved by the Council of Bingol. Although they share the same views as the Yehudites on the fact that Pax was not elevated to the role of a deity coequal with Noi, they believe that the Pax is unique and special enough that he can intercede with Noi on their behalf. Thus, they direct their prayers to Pax instead of Noi. They believe that religious authority is important and necessary. Thus, they believe that the Magisterium is the lawful authority on religious matters.

  • The Sohadekist school of Melkezedekitism believes that Pax will appoint a human to act as the Liberator of the Packilvanian realms. This belief speaks in terms of a moral and cultural figure who will develop and unite the beliefs of the Packilvanian people. This belief was used by Saidun the Conqueror and his Demirite descendents to justify their rule over the Feline majority of Packilvania in 1675. They in turn established the Saidunist school. Saidunist school is a minor grouping of Sohadekist who believe that Pax was human and thus humans have a special place in the world. Thus, they discouraged humans from breeding with other primines such as orcs and elves and from humans developing intimate relationships with Felines and other non-priming groups. Furthermore they saw the human whom Sohadek spoke of as a political ruler as opposed to moral and cultural figure.
  • The Madvinist school emerged in around 1760 and taught that Saidunism and Sohadekist was evil. It was established by Madvin Bedon, the great great grandfather of Amhoud I. They taught that Saidunism was nothing more than human propaganda and that Felines had to rule over themselves. With the rise of Zerah Demir IV, they taught that women were inferior to men and thus encouraged the creation of a hypermasculine patriarchal society.
Flag of the Karkati Brigades in Suvania, the last of the Ipsitite Military Orders, bearing the Crab which acts as a symbol of the Pax in the Sect.
The Ipsitite sect is a heavily deviating and minor sect of Paxism emerging in the mid 700s CE in Western Yasteria. The Ipsitites believe their leader, the Prophet Ipsit, was the second coming of the Pax. Ipsitite Doctrine, coming from the Mahimavan Agranirupana, describes the world in a cyclical manner as a battle between the evil and cruelty of the Urth which they call Borg, and the Creator who arrived from the Sky which they call Noi[n 1]. Ipsitites believe there will be many Coming Days, and each shall see a victory of Noi (the Sky), alongside Pax (the Sea) against the evils of Borg (the Urth), believing that should the Sea be destroyed, Borg will encompass the entirety of the Urth and Avarice shall reign. Ipsitites use of a lot of naturalistic symbolism in expressing their faith, often depicting the Pax in the form of a Crab, with the crab being their most used religious symbol. This is believed to be due to the nature of crabs as having had their eggs laid in the ocean before coming on land, as if rising from the water to claim dominion over the Land. Many Paxists consider the Ipsitites to be a different religion as opposed to a sect, however their shared worship of Noi and belief in the battle between the Pax and Noi against the Borg intertwines them to a certain degree.

Writings (LeKitab)

Summary of the Sacred Scriptures
Writing Ichtmar Vagumar Haagemar Mahimavan Agranirupana Bas Magdamar
Author or commissioned by Prophet Besmali Suleiman of Yehudah King Obed III of Bingol Prophet Ipsit Melkezedek the Great
Composition date c. 2036 BCE c. 400 BCE c. 670 CE c. 740 CE c. 980 CE
Sects All All Obedism Ipsitism Melkezedekism (incl. Sohadekism, Madvinism)

The Ichtmar was written by Prophet Besmali circa 2036 BCE. It contains the creation story that forms the basis of the religion. It draws on and synthesizes multiple oral and written sources. It contains an account of how the world was created, how the Esma were made, how Borg turned from righteousness and inflicted corruption on and assumed control of the world, and how Noi rejected and abandoned the planet. It contains an account of the Pax's journey of discovering Noi, rejecting Borg and being empowered with the ability to defeat him. The book ends with a description of a prophecy of how Borg would escape from the Jovian Gate and Pax would destroy him forever and set Urth free from evil.

The Vagumar was composed by Jerome of Damaclion on the order of King Suleiman of Yehudah. It quotes the Ichtmar's account of the creation myth verbatim, but adds details about how people are meant to live their lives and how the world is intended to be organized. It draws on Pax's mortality as an example of how common people can develop a relationship with Noi and have the ability to live a life that is morally upright on their own. Thus, it emphasises individual responsibility, autonomy and personal freedom. Thus, neo-liberal democrats draw heavily on the Vagumar text as evidence for individualism and self-sovereignty.

The Haagemar also draws on the creation myth account as provided by the Ichtmar but makes modifications with respect to the mortality of the Pax informed by the polytheistic teachings and beliefs of pagan kingdom that received Paxism. It contains a description of the apotheosis of the Pax and his marriage with Noi. It contains a detailed list and description of the Haagen, the children created by Pax and Noi through their marriage who were assigned control over areas of Urth's natural phenomena and the fates of humans. Although it does not explicitly call for the creation of religious leaders dedicated to each Haagen, these leaders and their communities developed organically.

The Bas Magdamar was commissioned by Melkezedek the Great draws on a desire by scholars and religious leaders who were influenced by the Yehudite sect to return to the monotheism of the Vagumar. However, it bows to the centrality of the position of Pax in beliefs by describing him as a special spiritual intercessor for mortals. This book's title means True Great Writing which reflects its creator's desire to centralise and control religious teaching. Thus, it calls for the creation of a religious government (i.e. the Magisterium of Paxism) with the authority to interpret and direct the worship of its people. Therefore, it creates room for the creation of authoritative religious writings.

Practices (leSikhram)

The following practices are common but not universal among Paxists.

Prayer (Silah)

Paxists are required to pray at least once a day and at least twice on a Friday. Paxists generally pray by facing the Memorial of Jovian Gate and going on their knees and lying prostrate. Ipsitites have traditionally made allowances for those without knowledge of the location of the Gate, and many Ipsitites pray four times in each Cardinal direction instead. Prayer is not strictly regulated in structure and duration but it is encouraged to include verses from holy scripture and to end the prayer with "Mag adem" (a Packilvanian phrase meaning "May (it) be". It is required that you wash with water (or sand in most sects, if you have no water) before praying. The infirm and pregnant are exempt from daily prayer.

Recitation (Qiran)

Paxists are expected to read the Holy Scriptures at least once a day. Furthermore, during gatherings, the Priest recites verses from the Holy Scriptures. It is regarded as highly encouraged to read the Holy Scriptures in full at least once in one's lifetime. Obviously not all writings are included in the holy scriptures by all sects.

Gathering (Mijhal)

Every week on a Friday, Paxists are expected to gather at a Temple for prayer and recitation. Depending on the society and sect people may be separated by gender, age or status. In Madvinism, and Sohadekism a complex system of separation exists between men and women, the old, middle aged and children, as well as different species. In Yehudism and Ipsitism, no divisions exists and people simply enter the temple as they see fit, though in the latter it is generally encouraged families enter together, led by the Head of the family.

Fasting (Rudamin)

Once a year in the month of Ishtihan starting on the day of the Start of the New Age (i.e., the New Year), people are expected to fast i.e., not to eat or drink from dawn until dusk. In some countries like Packilvania this is mandatory for all citizens except the sick, pregnant women and young children. The religious police are responsible for ensuring that people who should not eat or drink do not do so in public. This practice may or may not apply to non-believers depending on the province.

Offering and charity (Zakat)

Paxists are expected to give offerings in money, kind or their labor to temples and to the poor. Almsgiving in particular is strongly encouraged by the Holy Scriptures. As a result of this philosophy, Packilvania has the highest rate of non-state foreign aid in the world. One of the largest charitable foundations established under this practice is the Bedon Family Foundation which was formed in 2023 by Saga of Tynam and Thumim V. Ipsitites follow what is known as "Charity by the Blade", a practice in which labor may be offered in the form of taking up the duty to defend an Ipsitite Temple or community. This is most notably seen in the Third Suvani War, in which the Karkati Brigades are comprised mostly of Volunteers giving such charity in order to protect Ipsitite Communities from incursion by Ayalist or Secularist Forces.

Diet (Kisher)

In Paxism certain foods are forbidden because they are seen as dirty and unholy. The meat of reptiles, all insects except grasshoppers and consumption of blood or dead animals (i.e., animals that died due to disease or other strange causes not intended or known by the person consuming the animal) are forbidden. Animals must be slaughtered with a sharp knife, cleanly and swiftly and with a blessing before they can be regarded as holy and suitable for consumption. Ipsitites are notably exempt from some of these restrictions, allowing for animals to be slaughtered in any which way so long as a prayer of thanks is given after eating, and the animal's bones are picked clean, with Ipsitite doctrine heavily discouraging the wastage of food.

Marriage (Zawaj)

Marriage in Paxism is believed to reflect the sacred relationship between Noi and sentient beings more broadly. They believe it represents the intimate relationship between the creator and created. Furthermore, they believe that marriage provides the comfort, security, provision, mutual support, and personal fulfillment that enables people to live joyful and purposeful lives. They believe that marriage is as much an agreement and commitment to love, devotion, trust and self-sacrifice as it is an institution for strengthening society and enabling stability within the community. Many Paxists also believe that marriage is intended to provide a safe space for children to be had and raised, in which values about being a good citizen of the Urth, a responsible member of society, and a fulfilled and thoughtful individual can be imparted. They believe that marriage allows the perpetuation of society and the values and principles that underpin it to be purveyed especially where those values arise from Paxism.

Nevertheless, there are deep seated divergences on whom, when and how people ought to get married. Differences can exist between and within sects. Some Paxists believe that marriage can only exist between a cisman and a ciswoman. Others believe that marriage can extend to people who identify and express and men and women, regardless of their assigned gender at birth. Others believe that marriages between people of the same self-identified gender should be permissible. Arguments for and against who can get married to whom are based on diverse readings of the Bas Magdamar and interpretations of scripture over thousands of years.

For instance in the Sorceriocracy of Tharan, which was a nation that broadly identified as Paxist that was located in modern day Packilvania in the province of Fidakar that existed before the 7th century CE, heteresexual marriages were not permissible. In fact, only homosexuals could get married with arrangements between couples of different genders to have and raise children. Contemporaneous to them was the Sorceriocracy of Rahal (also broadly identifying as a Paxist nation) which permitted equal rights to marriage for people of varying gender expressions and identities without limitation. The modern Magisterium in Packilvania believes that these were heretical nations practicing anathemised magical and immoral cults with vaguely Paxist aesthetics. Nevertheless, this shows that opinions about the gender identity of people who can get married was never historically fixed or constant among people who identified as Paxist.

There have also been debates about who has the capacity to engage in marriage. In some societies that identified as Paxist, it was appropriate for people who would be considered children by modern standards to get married. It was also appropriate to coerce people into marriage or to take multiple marital partners or to engage in extramarital relationships such as concubinage. The boundaries on where physical intimacy lay were also obscured. Some societies believed that married men could have physically intimate relationships with other males in the context of friendships and the same was true in some societies for women. Some societies believed that it was appropriate for parents or tribal elders to select marital partners for their children. In some societies it was believed that women had no right to refuse a marriage proposal made by either the first suitor approved by their parents or by some tribal doctrine.

The version of Paxism that is taught by the Magisterium which encourages heterosexual marriages has only existed since the 11th century. The teaching that polygamous marriages should be discouraged except in exceptional circumstances has only existed since the 17th century and even then prominent people in society such as aristocrats and royals have flouted this doctrine, making it difficult for the Magisterium to enforce its teaching on this issue. Modern thinking about self awareness and bodily autonomy is progressively shifting attitudes about whether it is appropriate for parents to select marital partners and coerce their children to get married to them, with some people in the rural areas and among aristocratic circles in Packilvania continuing the practice despite growing condemnation of it by leading voices and a growing number of people in the Magisterium. With Paxism's spread to other parts of the world the heterocentric marital formulation is being challenged within Magisterial ranks.

Clerical authority (Imamiyat)

Most Paxists believe that there exists clerical authority. Yehudism believes that any recognised priest may train priests under them and both Ipsitism and Yehudism believes that women, queer and non-felines may serve as clerics. Melkezedists (Madvinists, Sohadekists etc.) believe that religious authority emanates from the Magisterium. Thus, Magisters are regarded as having the sole authority to determine religious interpretation and appoint priests and recognize prophets and scholars.

Atonement (Kipur)

Most Paxists believe that sacrificing food is required when atoning for ones sins. The general formula is to set up a specially designated altar and to burn the sacrifice thereupon while asking Pax and Noi for forgiveness. Some sects and even individuals believe that one should sacrifice crops while others believe that one should sacrifice animals. Others believe that a priest or Magister may sacrifice on behalf of the community or nation respectively.

They also believe that sacrifices are necessary when making a Covenant (an unbreakable vow) which includes marriage to seal the bow in heaven and Urth. Ipsitism purely endorses the latter, and does not accept the possibility of atoning for sins without strife, with it only being possible through being felled while in service to the Faith or performing a pilgrimage, with the only other option being through the sacrifice of your own life to Pax via suicide by drowning, though such a practice is increasing uncommon.

Pilgrimage (Uj)

Paxists are encouraged to make pilgrimage to at least one of the three holiest sites of the Paxist religion if they are able to: the Temple of the Remembrance (i.e., Memorial of the Jovian Gate) in Akas Akil, Temple of the Restoration in Adrien and the Temple of the Authority in Bingol. Pilgrimage involves prayer, fasting, cleansing, sacrifice etc. The cities of Adrien and Akas Akil are off-limits to non-Paxists and the Temple Mount in Bingol on which the Temple of the Authority is located is forbidden to non-Paxists. While historically there have been less Ipsitite Pilgrimages on account that Ipsitism demands pilgrims cross the land only by foot and the sea only by boat, Ipsite pilgrims tend to be highly respected within their communities for undertaking such a task. Melkezedekism believes that pilgrimage must be done in the month of Waseem (July).

Mourning and burial (Jinaza)

Paxists believe that the body must be washed, covered and buried. Madvinists and Sohadekists believe that cremation is an appropriate punishment for those who commit high crimes as recognised by the Holy Scriptures. They also believe that a cleansing ceremony as described above must be conducted after a period of mourning (which varies by sect but the Madvinists believe that women must mourn for a month and men for a week). Non-Paxists traditions have arisen such as wearing black.

Consecration (Hawsul)

When a child is born, their umbilical chord must be sacrificed to Noi to bless them. When they are born, a child is blessed by their parents and/or a priest. In Ipsitism, it is mandated such includes a baptism.

Baptism (Baptashme)

Baptism is a ritual conducted by which someone converts to Paxism. This ritual is only relevant for people who were not born Paxist but were born into another religion. It is the practice of a Priest or Magister submerging the convert in water after the person recites the Creed (Shahada): "There is one deity and that deity is Noi and her emissary is Pax" ("muLoheem muikht nadine muloheemarud muNoi na luwasiyu adhun muPax")

Temples (Majhid)

Temples are buildings specifically constructed as a place of worship for Paxists and thus under most circumstances, non-Paxists are not allowed to enter these venues. Their construction varies widely, but Paxists art is highly variable according to time and location. The most important component is to contain a large space for prayer as well as an altar for sacrifices.

Charisma (Kharishme)

Charisma are supernatural gifts and abilities believed to be endowed on a person to carry out a task which they would have not been able to without the intervention of said ability. The charisma are believed to be imparted by Noi on humans to imbue them temporarily with an extremely small but potent portion of her personal power. Its purpose is to demonstrate the presence and power of the deity through mortal issues rather than to necessarily resolve their issue although its effect is generally the resolution of this gift.

Types of Charisma

Prophecy (Nawbiyat)

Paxists believe that there are people who have been imparted with a special anointing to conduct supernatural healing, to reveal hidden and unknown truths, to cast out evil spirits and to impart messages from Noi to the nation. Most importantly they must impart a warning that must come true. These people are called Prophets. Most Paxists believe that someone is a Prophet if their prophecies or miracles actually come true. However, Madvinists and Sohadekists believe that the Magisterium must verify miraculous acts for a Prophet to be recognized as such. People who believe that prophets are only meant to convey messages to people from the Hive, often prefer the term Judge (Qadimhiva)

Exorcism (Xitarishme)

Paxists believe that evil spirits as well as the spirits of the dead can haunt places or people and cause destruction, sickness or misfortune. Thus, they believe that through sacrifice, baptism and prayer, those places or people can be exorcised of the spirits contained there. The Magisterium does not believe that evil spirits can cause sickness, but it does believe that they can spread lies and temptation and that through prayer, and fasting can be cast out.

Glossolalia & xenolalia (Tamkasirunhivishme)

Tamkasirunhivishme (colloquially known as Babala) is the collective name for glossolalia and xenolali which are known as luTamkasirunhivishme luBabaar and luTamkasirunhivishme luZayeen respectively. Glossolalia is the act of uttering random pseudo linguistic syllables with no known meaning in any sapient language. Xenolalia is the act of speaking in a natural language not known to the speaker. This two acts are believed to emerge from an outpouring of the power of the Most Beneficent to convey information (in the case of xenolalia) or to edify the believers (in the case of xenolalia). Belief in either is hotly divided with others completely dismissing the idea as something which the Most Beneficent no longer does to the other end of the spectrum where people believe that it yields deliverance from an insurmountable challenge. In Xitarishme, the exorcist has been known to utter Glossolalia.

Healing (Hayhahivafiyarishme)

Supernatural healing is the act of healing a physical or mental ailment without the aid of medicine. This is usually done through praying from the person suffering the ailment.

Schools of thought

  • Cessationists believe that Charisma are real but that Noi no longer pours them out to mortals. They might believe that some prophets post-Melkezedek Prophets are real usually Prophet Sohadek.
  • Continuationists believe that Charisma are real and that Noi continues to pour them out to mortals.
  • Mythologists believe that the Charisma are not real but that they were symbolic metaphors for Nois attributes and were used to convey lessons. Some suggest that because the scriptures arose in a primitive society for which scientific and empirical explanations for the changes in the world was lacking, mythologies about pseudo-magical or supernatural capabilities allegedly imparted by Noi helped to give people hope, or to enable charlatans to expropriate people's wealth or to exercise social influence.

Holy sites (leSih leHalaal)

The three holiest places in Paxism are the Temple of the Remembrance (more commonly known as the Memorial of the Jovian Gate or simply the Jovian Gate) in Akas Akil, the Temple of the Authority (located on the site of the Bingol Royal Palace) in Bingol and the Temple of the Restoration in Adrien all of which are located in Packilvania.

The first iteration of the Memorial of the Jovian Gate was built by followers of the Prophet Besmali to commemorate the Battle of Pax and Borg. The Battle of Pax and Borg is regarded as the most important event in Paxism after the Creation of the Universe because it was at this point that the Borg, an evil Esma was defeated by Pax and sealed away behind a magical barrier known as the Jovian Gate. The Memorial of the Jovian Gate contains the oldest copy of the Ichtmar in existence and many people believe that it is the original copy penned by Besmali himself. The area gained added significance by being struck by a meteor in the year 0CE, an event believed to be the third most important event in Paxism and currently marks the start of the New Year. Thus, it is regarded as the holiest site in Paxism.

The Temple of the Restoration is built on the site where King Suleiman of Yehudah received a vision from Noi and Pax to start writing the Vagumar to bring the nations under a single version of Paxism. At the Palace that was formerly located on the site, Jerome of Damaclion conducted the work of compiling writings from notable scholars and prophets alongside the Ichtmar into a single document known as the Vagumar. At this same spot, a council of scholars and prophets from across Central Yasteria approved the final document which today comprises the bulk of the writings of Paxists in the world. It is the second holiest site in Paxism and is the last whose holiness is undisputed.

The Temple of the Authority is located on a hill in Bingol that forms part of the Bingol Royal Palace complex. It was the location where High King Melkezedek the Great ordered various scholars to compile the Bas Magdamar due to the fact that there was major divisions among Paxists due to the infiltration of pagan ideals and beliefs. It builds on the Vagumar and by extension the Ichtmar with a few other writings specifically related to religious authority and interpretation. This was the site where Melkezedek issued a Decree proclaiming the establishment of the Magisterium and at which he summoned the Council of Bingol to approve the Bas Magdamar. All Paxists hold that it is an important site, but the degrees vary. In Melkezedekism it is the third holiest site equal to Adrien and Akas Akil. In Yehudism and Ipstitism, it is holy but not equal to Akas Akil and Adrien due to the face that Magisterium is recognised as important but hardly authoritative. This means to them pilgrimage to Bingol is not compulsory but edifying. In Obedism it is holy because King Obed III issued additions to the Vagumar from the same place.

There are other sites of minor religious significance in Paxism as follows:

  • The Temple of the Righteous Reign was built by Sultan Saidun the Conqueror atop the Mausoleum of Prophet Sohadek to justify his reign. Although Sohadekism considers it holy, they do not consider it equal to the previous three sites. Madvinists have mixed feelings about it due to the fact that Prophet Sohadek was indeed a recognised Prophet and their own ties to the Sultan's rule come from his prophecies but they resent human rule and disavow the argument that the Sultan could only be human as the Sohadekist suggest.
  • The Temple of Victory over Paganism is located at the Mausoleum of Iktan the Devout to commemorate the defeat of King Obed III of Bingol. It is regarded as important by Madvinists and Sohadekist but Obedists regard it as an effrontery of the highest order and they are forbidden from ever visiting it. Their High Priest cursed the site as evil.
  • The Temple of the Defeat of Atheism was built by Sultan Amhoud I in Adrien at the site where he was crowned to commemorate his defeat of the Packilvanian Communist Party and the restoration of Paxist rule over Packilvania. Madvinists consider it a sacred site and other sects believe it is of some value because they value the restoration of Paxism. However, all other sects have complaints about the self-aggrandisation of the Bedonite dynasty and its rule over Packilvania that lead them to disregard the supposed holy status of the Temple that Amhoud wanted it to convey instead considering it a temple like any other.

Canon law (Shureeh)

Paxist canon law known as Shureeh refers to the body of religious law (leKhanon aPaxashme) of Paxism. It consists of Bulls (Fataw) which are issued and recognised by the Magisterium of Paxism. These bulls are regarded as binding interpretations of scripture arising from scholarly research and exegesis of the Writings of Paxism. Bulls are required to be peer reviewed and must be issued by a recognised Magister. They can be revoked by the same Magister or by a higher ranked Magister. Paxist jurisprudence entails both substantive and procedural law.

This jurisprudence covers all areas of law. They can cover the appointment and dismissal of clerics, the proper execution of religious rituals, the enforcement of practices and the interpretation of beliefs. A Magister is authorised to judge religious disputes however in Packilvania a court system exists whereby only Magisters appointed by the Sultan or in line with Packilvanian statute can resolve disputes. In Packilvania there are Religious Courts and Religious Appeals where the latter receives appeals for religious issues and the former are responsible for trials and dispute resolution. A crime against a Paxist religious law is known as Hidaad. Places and principles which cannot be violated are known as Hiraam.

The jurisprudence of Paxism is not uniform or cohesive. Bulls issued by a Magister typically applhave binding effect within the area of their geographic jurisdiction and persuasive effect beyond that. Thus, there can be Bulls which differ significantly on the interpretation of scripture. This separation in the geographic jurisdiction was created to prevent opinions in the increasingly diverse and geographically distributed religion from dividing due to differences in ideology and circumstances. Furthermore, the Council of Great Magisters and Supreme Magister have been reluctant to rule on conflicting jurisdictions and it has preferred not to certify many Bulls, relegating many of them to Opinions.

Controversies and Key Issues

Same-sex marriage

For most of its history, the Magisterium was united in the belief that same-sex romantic and physically intimate relationships including but not limited to marriage were forbidden based on a strict in interpretation of the scripture specifically, the Surah 1478 which states, "I call you, men and women, marry, bear children and be abundant as the Most Beneficent has led you to". Movements emerged in more liberal nations stating that this Surah did not specifically require marriage solely between men and women. Given the conflict and fear of secession, the Council of Great Magisters ruled that the matter was to be interpreted geographically.

Female Magisters

The criteria for Magisters are described in the Bingolian Additions of the Bas Magdamar entitled, the Government. In this section, Surah 6980 states that "A Magister shall be a man who..." Others began arguing that the word "man" was being used generally in this case. Historical and linguistic analysis pointed out that because of the patriarchal society in which the book was written considered women and children as being subordinated to men, the term "man" was used to describe people generally. Read together with Surah 450, which states, "Serve the Most Beneficent as She calls you, each according to your gift". Thus, arguments emerged that women could also be called to serve as Magisters given that Surah 1203 states, "The Most Merciful shall share Her gifts as she pleases..." which they argue indicates that anyone can be appointed if they are "called".

Abortion

In Surah 23, "Verily, I say to you as the Most Beneficent instructs, 'Preserve all life as far as possible, even the life of... and even the unborn infant for whoever does not shall commit hidaadagainst the Most Merciful'". Liberals argued that the Surah could be read along with Surah 2312 which states,"If one man is old and sickly and another is young and strong, whose life, shall you save where both equally face doom? Verily, I say to you, that he who seeks what is good and decides with his heart, shall be spared the wrath of the Most High and rewarded the cup of life". As such, liberals argue that discretion is given to the doctor or mother or other qualified person depending on the situation to terminate a pregnancy.

Stem cell research

Stem cell research has been contended by conservatives as being forbidden due to Surah 23 (as discussed above). Liberals have stated that the same Surah read together 2312 bear the same consequences as the argument for abortion given that stem cell research benefits people more. Furthermore, they argue that a zygote is not an unborn infant despite possessing the potential to become one. Some argue that given that many gametes are frequently destroyed, they are not infants and neither are zygote or even embryos as they bear no resemblance to an "unborn infant" by any definition.

Pacifism and violence

Surah 1780 states, "He who rules you, shall bear the might of the scimitar to levy justice to his subjects and defend the realm". Some argue that this means that use of violent force against civilians for maintaining public order and against foreign belligerent for national defense is permissible. But based on Surah 23, others argue that violence even restrained use of violence is impermissible. Martyrdom in Paxism, though recognised as a great good, is often mired in controversy for its association with people who died committing deliberate acts of violence even if with religiously oriented intent.

Holy days (leYam leHalaal)

Holiday Packilvanian name CE Date PLC Date Purpose Observed by
New Year's Day and Start of the Month of Fasting LuYam alu-Oor luNav 1 January 1 Ishahan Celebrates the start of the new year All
End of the Fast luYam aluRumadin 31 January 31 Ishahan Celebrates the end of the month of fasting
Melkezedek the Great's Day LuYam a-Melkezedek muBas 21 March 21 Odihan Celebrates the adoption of the Bas Magdamar by the Council of Bingol as well as the formation of the Magisterium of Paxism (non-historical) All Melkezedekists
Madvin's Day LuYam a-Madvin 17 April 17 Jahar Celebrates the proclamation by Prophet Madvin that a Feline Sultan would rule over Packilvania Madvinist Melkezedekists
Besmali's Day LuYam a-Besmali 27 May 27 Subal Celebrates the writing of the Ichtmar by Prophet Besmali (non-historical) All
Suleiman of Yehudah's Day LuYam a-Suleiman a-Yehudah 19 July 19 Waseem Celebrates the adoption of the Vagumar by the Council of Adrien (non-historical) All
End of the Pilgrimage luYam alu-Uj 31 July 31 Waseem Celebrates the end of the month of pilgrimage
Veneration of the Martyrs luWaloofiya ameTashiyashalvatan 9 August 9 Hayaad
Salvation Day LuYam aluShalvayat 14 October 14 Kharaat Celebrates the day Pax defeated Borg and sealed him behind the Jovian Gate (non-historical) All
Sohadek's Day LuYam a-Sohadek 8 December 8 Dhuyeel Celebrates the proclamation by Prophet Sohadek that a Sultan would reunite the realms of Zubrayn and bring Paxist rule over Packilvania (non-historical) Sohadekist Melkezedekists
Iktan the Devout's Day LuYam a-Iktan muSlamiya 16 December Celebrates the founding the first Packilvanian state by Iktan the Devout. (non-historical) All Melkezedekists

End of the Fast

The Day of the End of the Fast celebrates the end of the first month of the year, Ishahan, which is characterised by mandatory fasting for all adherents of Paxism. Fasting encourages one to focus on the divine things and to be sympathetic to the lest fortunate. The day of the end of fasting is characterised by people giving more Salah than they normally do during the day. In Paxist majority communities shops tend to close early or the day can be a public holiday in which most work is stopped. The holiday is characterised by a large evening feast with one's family or community where there is sharing of gifts. People are encouraged to give gifts or alms to the less fortunate. Various traditions have arisen such as the consumption of special treats such as various Central Yasterian festive sweets or decorating ones house with bright lights and colourful ornaments.

End of the Pilgrimage

The Day of the End of the Pilgrimage celebrated the last day of the month in which mandatory pilgrimage is permitted. It is required that pilgrims to the Temple of the Restoration, Temple of the Authority and the Memorial of the Jovian Gate partake in a variety of rituals to mark the conclusion of their journey and their preparation for a return to their places of origin. This includes prayer, ritual ablution, gathering for collective worship and listening to homilies by teachers of the word. A unique tradition that each pilgrim must perform is to burn an offering of grain to the almighty in thanks for the protection and strength to accomplish the Pilgrimage. Those who did not attend the Pilgrimage normally celebrate by attending a Mijhalis (gathering) at their local Majhid (temple) where the Imam (priest) burns the offering of grain on their collective behalf.

Veneration of the Martyrs

The Veneration of the Martyrs is often regarded as a solemn occasion (compared to the end of the Fast and the end of the Pilgrimage which are festive holidays). The Veneration of the Martyrs is characterised by the solemn calls to prayer from the high Minarets of many Majhids. It is characterised by a solemn procession carrying artefacts belonging or ascribed to a local, national or international martyr. Normally, artefacts belonging to a Martyr such as their hair etc., are kept safely in a Shrine or a Majhid under the protection of a Makhees, an Imam or other official. People will normally wear black, attend a solemn gathering where there will be no singing or rejoicing. The day is designed to encourage reflection of the role of martyrdom, asceticism, self sacrifice and holiness. Thus, people are encouraged to abstain from physical intimacy, meat, leavened bread, alcohol, and sweets. Adherents will normally attend a Mijhalis but the Liturgy will be based on a Martyr normally Martyrs related to the area.

Salvation

The day of Salvation (Shalvayat) is one of the holiest days because it celebrates the pinnacle of the Eschatology of Paxism I.e., the 1st defeat of Borg by Pax and the 2nd and final defeat of Borg. This ceremony will entail the lighting of candles in the evening with prayer in one's home with one's family. The day normally entails people writing their sins on some parchment or paper and burning it in a fire. This is symbolic of the fact that the defeat of Borg also reflects the spiritual defeat of the inclination towards sin in the individual. People are encouraged to confess their sins to a loved one, fellow believer or religious leader. Often people without access to a Makhees or an Imam will form little groups where their confess their sins to one another. On this day, the one listen to the sin is required to simply acknowledge it by saying "You are forgiven". There has been substantial debate among jurists about whether these confession comprise valid and admissible testimony in legal cases concerning the canon law of Paxism.

Population and distribution

The following table contains a list of countries by number of Paxists:

Population of Paxists by country
Country Percentage (%) Quantity
Packilvania 98% 1,125,584,762
Great Morstaybishlia 4% 20,635,583
Free Pax States 0% 0
Drakkengard 95% 19,000,000
Phoenixia 18% 9,000,000
Allegheny 67% 62,189,400
Emberwood Coast 14% 7,000, 000

Notes

  1. Some Anthropologists and Historians theorize that the link between Noi and the sky is a later interpretation by Ayalist scholars wishing to make the sect more synchronous with their beliefs.