Blaeringr wrote:It's up to your GM.
Regarding paladins: the rulebooks do not specifically state that paladins need to follow a deity, and the warrior of the holy light archetype has a line "focus on the holy light that shines within their souls" that seems to hint that paladins draw on a non deistic source of divine power.
Considering that, what is the source of a paladin's paladiness? Is it possible to have a dystheist (I hesitate to use the term atheist at all in a setting where the existence of deities is readily demonstrable) paladin? If they do adhere to a certain deity's religion, does that deity become the divine source of their paladiness, or merely a supplement?
Follow up: if a paladin repeatedly breaks their deity's paladin code in a way that they still conform to the generic paladin code, or for some other reason a paladin is expelled from their church while still remaining faithful to the generic paladin code, do they still remain a paladin?
Quick example: Torag's paladins follow this tenet "I am at all times truthful, honorable, and forthright, but my allegiance is to my people. I will do what is necessary to serve them, including misleading others if need be." A paladin who refuses to lie, and who through his honesty embarrasses his people, and perhaps creates a diplomatic incident, could be considered to be in conflict with Torag's teachings. If a paladin of Torag repeatedly embarrasses his people in this way so that his status in Torag's eyes is diminished, and the politicians and priests cast him out, is he still a paladin?
Since political leaders are always so well behaved, I know this will rarely come up, but on the off chance that it does...