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Shu-Dereth

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Shu-Dereth
Related to Fjorden
World Sel
Featured In Elantris

Shu-Dereth is one of the major religions on Sel.[1] Shu-Dereth is an offshoot of Shu-Keseg. It was founded by Dereth, a disciple of Keshu. However, Shu-Dereth differs from Shu-Keseg in the way that it focuses on the equality of obedience, rather than the equality of mind. Shu-Dereth is based on the worship of Jaddeth, a God who is said to slumber in the earth, waiting for a time when the whole world worships him to return and rule the world. Followers of Shu-Dereth are known as Derethi, and the religion's holy book is called the Do-Dereth.

Dereth’s ideas were originally rejected in his native JinDo; however, they were embraced by the Fjordell. Shu-Dereth has been the official religion of Fjorden since the conversion of Wyrn Wulfden the First and has spread to all of the eastern nations[2]. Since that time, the leader of Shu-Dereth takes the name Wyrn as a title upon his ascension to the position. Wyrn acts both as Jaddeth's prophet and regent during his entrapment in the earth.

Fjorden’s militaristic society stratified and organized Dereth’s teachings into an almost martial level. As a result, Shu-Dereth is a highly militaristic religion, and is based on a regimented ranking, known as the Great Chain.

The Great Chain[edit]

The Great Chain is the chain that links all living members of Shu-Dereth to Wyrn and then to Jaddeth. Masters were always called hroden, and but there were two different ways a servant could serve a master. One way was to swear to be someone's odiv, which was irrevocably binding. Krondet was a less binding oath, where one listened to the counsel of their hroden, but were not morally obligated to do what they say. In the priesthood, everyone in the Great Chain were odivs and bound to do what someone higher in the chain commanded.[3]

  • At the bottom of the chain are the common people; they serve the arteths and the dorven.
  • Dorven are the lowest level of the priesthood, they served the arteths and the gradors.
  • Arteths are the lowest level which may lead a chapel by themselves, they served the gradors.
  • Gradors are the level of the priesthood directly above the arteths, they generally lead the chapels in the larger cities.
  • Ragnets are the level directly below the gyorns, they generally oversaw a region of Derethi followers.
  • Gyorns served Wyrn directly, they were the highest available level of their priesthood other than some of the gragdets. There are only twenty of them, and are among the most important people in the Fjordell Empire. They often serve as ambassadors for Wyrn to foreign nations, such as Arelon and the Rose Empire.[4] They customarily wear red armor.[5]
  • Gragdets were the leaders of monasteries, they were outside of the direct chain, although some of them had positions of authority of the gyorns (The gragdet of the Dakhor monastery for example).
  • Wyrn was at the head of the church, and was able to serve Jaddeth directly, the Wyrn had direct control over all members of Shu-Dereth.

Beliefs & Prophesies[edit]

  • Shu-Dereth interpreted Keseg’s teachings of unity for all mankind to mean that all men must be united beneath the rule of one nation. Dereth taught that once all men bow before a single monarch, proving their unified nature, God would come to live amongst them.[2]
  • The derethi believe that the souls of men who hated Jaddeth during life become become Svrakiss. The Svrakiss are considered to be evil entities barred from entrance into heaven and having the power to take over the bodies of living men and control their actions.[6]
  • When someone who followed Shu-Dereth had bad luck or a difficult time, they believed that the Svrakiss were to blame.[7][8]
  • The Day of Empire was a day prophesied by Wyrn when the whole world would be converted to Shu-Dereth and Jaddeth, the Derethi god, would return to Sel.[1]

Monasteries[edit]

Entering Derethi priests joined one of many monasteries. They each serve as religious training as well as train them for various tasks:[9][10]

Dakhor Monastery
A mysterious monastery with violent stories attached to it. They train the Dakhor monks.
Fjeldor Monastery
Trains spies.[9][10]
Ghajan Monastery
One of many monasteries that train warriors. Hrathen trained here after leaving Dakhor.[10]
Rathbore Monastery
Trains assassins.[9] In general very few individuals may make use of Rathbore-trained assassins, gyorns and Wyrn being some of them.[10] Potential members may be required to kill someone before being admitted, as Fjon was required to kill Hrathen before being admitted.[11]

Notes[edit]

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