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Ideas about Erastil's curious bachelorhood


Pathfinder Campaign Setting General Discussion

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Sean K Reynolds wrote:

The 8th Dwarf wrote:

Maybe Erastil gets married to a mortal worshiper, staying faithful and growing old with them and when they die he starts again. That way he knows the joys and sorrows of family life thousands of times over. He has experienced Orc raids, pestilence, weddings, evil overlords and so on.

So... he's the Highlander?

I remember reading that an earlier draft of the script didn't have the "immortals can't have children" bit stuck in, and the opening scene was originally going to be Conner at a funeral for his son who had died of old age.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Keep in mind he's a god of hunters, and protecting his family.

At the very least, if Rovagug did something to his family, he would be out hunting down Rovagug's kids and taking care of them, permanently.

But there's no personal grudge in any of the lore.

I actually like the idea of a personal avatar living, dying, marrying, over and over, spreading his faith across Golarion, bringing in traditional values, keeping him at least partially current with the times and peoples...and not incidentally spreading around some of that deific bloodline to make heroes.

==Aelryinth

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Maybe he's married to a deer or some other non-humanoid entity. A bear maybe? All of his divine minions (herald + servants) are non humanoid (deer, horse, eagle, boar, treant). Its entirely possibly that his family is of the Animal (extraplanar) type.


...we're talking about Erastil, not Lamashtu.

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Icyshadow wrote:
Son of the Veterinarian wrote:
Kevin Andrew Murphy wrote:
So far as I read it, Erastil is exceedingly straight because he is. He probably started as a young stag lord god eons ago playing the field and rutting with any goddess who tickled his fancy and a few who just seemed like a good idea at the time.

Fairly close to my own opinion.

I suspect that as a former Stag god he still thinks in terms of what's good for the herd. It's the responsibility of the stag to protect his herd and the responsibility of the females to raise the young, just altered now that his worshipers are mostly human now.

It's possible that he's not married because deep down he considers all of his female worshipers part of his herd.

No offense, but isn't that kinda taking the word stag out of the meaning that Kevin had for it?

I was actually going for both meanings, but I think it's just carrying the metaphor too far. For example, raven goddesses and their priestesses may be expected to dress in black, hang around graveyards and battlefields, make dark prophecies, and say "Nevermore" a lot and it's fine, but if they start snacking on eyeballs, perching naked in trees, and crapping on those below? The metaphor gets overextended.

As I see it, Erastil started as a god who felt a strong kinship with stags, but was not an uplifted stag. Biggest counterexample? Old Deadeye is also the god of hunting, who has people running around with bows, and this has zero to do with the way that deer eat. Erastil does not make vegetarianism a sacred commandment or even an expectation, despite deer being herbivores. Salt licks are probably not his communion wafers.

Qadira

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Hey I noticed that you mentioned Lamashtu as the main goddess that deals with childbirth but there is one other goddess that deals very much with that subject: Pharasma. It's noted in the Urgathoa article as a way she strikes at Pharasma. Maybe Erastil and Pharasma have some connection?

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Icyshadow wrote:
...we're talking about Erastil, not Lamashtu.

Yes, but Erastil is a prehuman deity, and is likely not resembling a humanoid in his "natural" appearance. Many animals exhibit family gatherings: lions, wolves, birds, dolphins, ants, prairie dogs, fish, etc.

Some of those creatures also "farm", ants in particular.

All of the carni- and omnivores hunt / forage.

The only part of his portfolio NOT represented by an animal community is Trade, and if we started talking about apes, some of them trade a bit in the wild.

I'm just saying, its not out of the realm of possibility that the Stag God is a literal animal-like creature married to a similar animal-like creature.


Liz Courts wrote:
The 8th Dwarf wrote:
As long it is the original highlander you are talking about... Yes!
There can be only one...movie.

Don't be ridiculous. A Highlander sequel would be awesome and I have no idea why they never made one.


Aelryinth wrote:

Keep in mind he's a god of hunters, and protecting his family.

At the very least, if Rovagug did something to his family, he would be out hunting down Rovagug's kids and taking care of them, permanently.

But there's no personal grudge in any of the lore.

I actually like the idea of a personal avatar living, dying, marrying, over and over, spreading his faith across Golarion, bringing in traditional values, keeping him at least partially current with the times and peoples...and not incidentally spreading around some of that deific bloodline to make heroes.

==Aelryinth

Yeah, that idea appeals to me as well. Heck, if you didn't let player characters weasel it too much you could even use it as excuse for celestial sorcerer bloodlines or the like. Generations pass without incident, some kid gets healed by one of Dead Eye's clerics at a young age and BAM.


The Block Knight wrote:
Dotted for interest. I can't believe I never noticed this oddity sooner.

+1


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Interesting dicussion.
After reading some texts, I follow these theories:

1. Old Deadeyes Wife was killed in the past, most likely in the great battle against Rovagug.
As a special twist: Baalzebul has the body of a dead deity named Azhia (unknown if male or female, but the names seems more female). Mayby this is/was his wife...

2. A female cleric (in Seeker of Secrets) from the pathfinders has found evidence of a matriarchial order, which ruled the temples of Erastil in old times. She herself was part of a small coven run by mostly unwed crones who betrothed themselves to Old Deadeye.
This could explain, why Erastil has no wife. He was wed with the priestess. Only the male priesthood had changed this in later years.

Andoran

Mikaze wrote:

I'm still a bit fond of the idea of him and Fandarra be ex's, with the cause of the breakup ironically being because Erastil moved on with the times while Fandarra didn't.

Along the lines of KAM's Ragnarok theory, this is a very real possibility after the war with Rovagug...

I rather like that theory too. And we do know that they're said to have relations in the past, in at least some ancient traditions.

Andoran

Maybe Old Deadeye did have a wife way back and long ago, maybe she was a mortal being. Who he loved dearly with all his heart, but as mortals will be mortals her life ebbed and flowed and who was he to rob her of the right to her mortality, or perhaps she was a druid who turned it down in favor of the great cycle. After her passing a vow was made never to marry again and he long awaits her spirit to return to him.

Maybe some reincarnated druid out there is his wife her spirit unable or not quite ready to pass on just yet.

Or maybe he is a strong family god because he never got to be with his true love, maybe she was taken from him by an accident beyond his control pushing him to hold what he couldn't have so highly.


Kevin Andrew Murphy wrote:

But leaving Old Deadeye's wife in the cage with Rovagug like Sam Winchester in the pit with Asmodeus?

Instead, I think the most reasonable thing is that Erastil's wife died long ago in the "before time" or else was one of the early casualties of Rovagug, which would also work because it would give him something to do for the fight. Asmodeus may have forged and locked the trap and Sarenrae may have done the big fighting, but it would have been Erastil who tracked the beast, set the snare, and organized the hunt. Then again, if Erastil was a veteran of another war, another time, and a far more terrible Ragnarok, it would also be in character for him to organize the hunt so these children don't suffer more. And he'd still be grieving for his wife even if this wasn't the beast that killed her.

Though I think it also doesn't matter that much except as an argument among priests. It's better to keep it nebulous in the world, though on the GMs side of the screen, I'd still be running Erastil as the old widower and be thinking of him as Odin/Wotan post-Ragnarok after the loss of Frigga/Fricka.

1st: Awesome Reference!

2nd: That fits him nicely.

The Druid fits as well.

Personally I see him being either the Odin style or the Married to a Nature Goddess. So I will probably have him married to a Nature Goddess in my own Setting. Though this might be because he is one of the few gods that I will keep no matter what.

In fact I am building his Avatar right now and really hope the Mythic Adventure Rules are worth the money.


Marriage is for having children. Maybe he's impotent now, or at least sterile. "Old Deadeye," indeed.


I'll presume you didn't mean it that way, but some people might take offense to that first sentence.

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

I'm sure allenw means "if Erastil believes marriage is for children, if he is impotent or sterile, then he doesn't see the point in marrying."


Sean K Reynolds wrote:
I'm sure allenw means "if Erastil believes marriage is for children, if he is impotent or sterile, then he doesn't see the point in marrying."

Precisely. We're talking about Erastil's motivations, after all.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Liz Courts wrote:
The 8th Dwarf wrote:
As long it is the original highlander you are talking about... Yes!
There can be only one...movie.

Well it did win the Academy Award for the best movie ever made.

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