Clerics and scrolls with opposed alignment descriptors


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A cleric can't prepare spells opposing his or the alignment of his deity.

But what about using a spell completion Item?

Quote:

To have any chance of activating a scroll spell, the scroll

user must meet the following requirements.
• The spell must be of the correct type (arcane or divine).
Arcane spellcasters (wizards, sorcerers, and bards) can only
use scrolls containing arcane spells, and divine spellcasters
(clerics, druids, paladins, and rangers) can only use scrolls
containing divine spells. (The type of scroll a character
creates is also determined by his class.)
• The user must have the spell on her class list.
• The user must have the requisite ability score.
If the user meets all the requirements noted above, and
her caster level is at least equal to the spell’s caster level,
she can automatically activate the spell without a check.

Is the only part about I could find in the rules and its the correct type, its on his class list and he has the ability score (we assume).

So technically he could?


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Alienfreak wrote:
So technically he could?

Regardless, attempting to circumvent his deities restrictions on which spells he's allowed to cast is a good way for a Cleric to end up on his deities bad side; Clerics have to worry about violating the tenets of their religion and winding up ex-Clerics, which this almost certainly lead to.


KrispyXIV wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:
So technically he could?
Regardless, attempting to circumvent his deities restrictions on which spells he's allowed to cast is a good way for a Cleric to end up on his deities bad side; Clerics have to worry about violating the tenets of their religion and winding up ex-Clerics, which this almost certainly lead to.

Since when is it a "deities restriction"?

If I answer to a True Neutral deity and play a lawful neutral cleric and try to use a Protection from Chaos it leads the deity to making me an ex cleric?
Also it would do the same to an neutral evil cleric of its order?

What makes you assume its not just a technical difficulty of granting the spells to you?

What should the deity care about you using a PtC?

The only reference I can find to that is "cleric can’t
cast spells" and not "is not allowed to" or "is forbidden to"...


Alienfreak wrote:


Since when is it a "deities restriction"?

If I answer to a True Neutral deity and play a lawful neutral cleric and try to use a Protection from Chaos it leads the deity to making me an ex cleric?
Also it would do the same to an neutral evil cleric of its order?

What makes you assume its not just a technical difficulty of granting the spells to you?

What should the deity care about you using a PtC?

The only reference I can find to that is "cleric can’t
cast spells" and not "is not allowed to" or "is forbidden to"...

If you are a lawful neutral character, you are probably opposed to chaotic magic in general; trying to cirvumvent this really indicates your listed alignment is probably not accurate.

But you do appear to be right; Clerics can't cast spells opposed to their alignment OR their deities, and its not really expounded upon.

But yeah, any Cleric trying to circumvent a deity based restriction on their spellcastng by clever use of items would probably find themselves lacking a divine sponsor in my book. Thats pretty clearly a violation of their expected code of conduct.

Their own personal issues with spells? Probably not.


KrispyXIV wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:


Since when is it a "deities restriction"?

If I answer to a True Neutral deity and play a lawful neutral cleric and try to use a Protection from Chaos it leads the deity to making me an ex cleric?
Also it would do the same to an neutral evil cleric of its order?

What makes you assume its not just a technical difficulty of granting the spells to you?

What should the deity care about you using a PtC?

The only reference I can find to that is "cleric can’t
cast spells" and not "is not allowed to" or "is forbidden to"...

If you are a lawful neutral character, you are probably opposed to chaotic magic in general; trying to cirvumvent this really indicates your listed alignment is probably not accurate.

But you do appear to be right; Clerics can't cast spells opposed to their alignment OR their deities, and its not really expounded upon.

But yeah, any Cleric trying to circumvent a deity based restriction on their spellcastng by clever use of items would probably find themselves lacking a divine sponsor in my book. Thats pretty clearly a violation of their expected code of conduct.

Their own personal issues with spells? Probably not.

You seem to mistake a Cleric for a Paladin. That one has a Codex he can't violate and will get punished for it.

Deities have Dogmas. Like being a Lathander cleric and creating undead? Well... I guess thats a violation of the "code of conduct" the god has due to his Dogma.

But a Mielliki cleric fighting the invasion of a wood filled with unicorns and other "beasts" by Baatezu and using a Protection from Law Scroll he found earlier while doing so?
Why should the deity care...

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Basically for a cleric, a spell that's forbidden to them by alignment is something that I treat as not on their class list. i.e. for a Good Cleric, Dispel Good is not on thier list.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Alienfreak wrote:

But a Mielliki cleric fighting the invasion of a wood filled with unicorns and other "beasts" by Baatezu and using a Protection from Law Scroll he found earlier while doing so?

Why should the deity care.

All I can say is... you don't know Mielliki very well. A proper follower of her would have no truck with demonkind... period.


LazarX wrote:
Basically for a cleric, a spell that's forbidden to them by alignment is something that I treat as not on their class list. i.e. for a Good Cleric, Dispel Good is not on thier list.

Thats actually a good way of handling it but its still a house rule :)


Alienfreak wrote:

You seem to mistake a Cleric for a Paladin. That one has a Codex he can't violate and will get punished for it.

Deities have Dogmas. Like being a Lathander cleric and creating undead? Well... I guess thats a violation of the "code of conduct" the god has due to his Dogma.

But a Mielliki cleric fighting the invasion of a wood filled with unicorns and other "beasts" by Baatezu and using a Protection from Law Scroll he found earlier while doing so?
Why should the deity care...

Clerics get the same deal. From d20pfsrd:

"Ex-Clerics
A cleric who grossly violates the code of conduct required by her god loses all spells and class features, except for armor and shield proficiencies and proficiency with simple weapons. She cannot thereafter gain levels as a cleric of that god until she atones for her deeds (see the atonement spell description)."

Deities care because Clerics are personally empowered representives of the deity in the material plane. Iomedae does NOT care for her representatives making longwinded excuses for why such and such actions were necessary to accomplish a goal; they should have use the tools she provided to accomplish the task, and not rationalized some horrible blasphemy which almost certainly could have been avoided.


LazarX wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:

But a Mielliki cleric fighting the invasion of a wood filled with unicorns and other "beasts" by Baatezu and using a Protection from Law Scroll he found earlier while doing so?

Why should the deity care.
All I can say is... you don't know Mielliki very well. A proper follower of her would have no truck with demonkind... period.

So a follower of Mielikki would never come into the situation of having to save a forest from Baatezu who kill every living being in the wood to make it "peaceful" so they can maybe... search for an artifact?

Mielikki:

Quote:


Sphere
Forests

Portfolio
Autumn
Dryads
Forest Creatures
Forests
Rangers

I can perfectly see that happen...


You're ignoring the fact that they can prevent said invasion without the scroll of protection from law.

The fact that its convenient and easy is irrelevant; things, especially matters of faith, are not always about what is convenient and easy.

The ends matter just as much as the means, in this case.


Note: If you're looking for the guy who does what he sees as his deities work without worrying about whether or not its technically blasphemy, thats the Inquisitor. They get lots of leeway with toeing the line on that sort of stuff.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Alienfreak wrote:

So a follower of Mielikki would never come into the situation of having to save a forest from Baatezu who kill every living being in the wood to make it "peaceful" so they can maybe... search for an artifact?

That sounds like "I had to burn the forest down to save it." defense.

Following a diety means that your patron has drawn lines for you. Cross them at your own risk.


KrispyXIV wrote:


Clerics get the same deal. From d20pfsrd:

"Ex-Clerics
A cleric who grossly violates the code of conduct required by her god loses all spells and class features, except for armor and shield proficiencies and proficiency with simple weapons. She cannot thereafter gain levels as a cleric of that god until she atones for her deeds (see the atonement spell description)."

Deities care because Clerics are personally empowered representives of the deity in the material plane. Iomedae does NOT care for her representatives making longwinded excuses for why such and such actions were necessary to accomplish a goal; they should have use the tools she provided to accomplish the task, and not rationalized some horrible blasphemy which almost certainly could have been avoided.

Compare:

"A paladin who ceases to be lawful good, who willfully
commits an evil act, or who violates the code of conduct"

with

"A cleric who grossly violates the code of conduct required
by her god loses"

So in the first case we have a perfectly defined case "evil act" (if you can clearly define such that is) while in the second we have "GROSSLY violate the code of conduct"...
Where exactly do you see an explanation for that "code of conduct"?

Maybe you can quote it. A cleric of a lawful good deity is allowed to perform chaotic evil acts. Otherwise it would be clearly stated. And if casting a lawful spell is a lawful act (as per rules) you may still do it.
Otherwise there would be written:
"A cleric who ceases to be one step away from his deities alignment, who willfully commits an act of an alignment opposed to his own or his deities, or who violates the code of conduct"

Then you would be right about your case.
Your argumentation is that because a cleric doesn't have the heavy armour proficiency he grossly violates some code of conduct if he gets it from a feat just because he wasn't provided by her with that.

What!?


LazarX wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:

So a follower of Mielikki would never come into the situation of having to save a forest from Baatezu who kill every living being in the wood to make it "peaceful" so they can maybe... search for an artifact?

That sounds like "I had to burn the forest down to save it." defense.

Following a diety means that your patron has drawn lines for you. Cross them at your own risk.

You compare apples to oranges.

Mielikki has the Portfolio of FORESTS and weirdo BEASTS. So if you are a cleric of her and burn down a wood and slaughter every beast within you may have a problem with her.

But if you are a cleric of Lathander and burn down that forest to prevent the Baatezu from destroying Toril with that Artifact...
How exactly would that be against any of his Portfolios/Dogmas/Conducts


Alienfreak wrote:


What!?

My argument is that intentionally circumventing a restriction clearly and explicitly linked to your deity (because your alignment IS tied to theirs), is almost certainly grossly violating their code of conduct.

If a cleric resents the rules set forth for them by the deity so much they're looking to circumvent them, that cleric is probably not the right person to be following that deity.

Its not spelled out, because its definately less black and white than it is for paladins; that is not free reign to do whatever you want. It can actually be more restrictive than you're implying; for instance, I could totally see a situation where you could use a chaotic spell in a way where it grossly violates your chaotic deities code of conduct.


KrispyXIV wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:


What!?

My argument is that intentionally circumventing a restriction clearly and explicitly linked to your deity (because your alignment IS tied to theirs), is almost certainly grossly violating their code of conduct.

If a cleric resents the rules set forth for them by the deity so much they're looking to circumvent them, that cleric is probably not the right person to be following that deity.

Its not spelled out, because its definately less black and white than it is for paladins; that is not free reign to do whatever you want. It can actually be more restrictive than you're implying; for instance, I could totally see a situation where you could use a chaotic spell in a way where it grossly violates your chaotic deities code of conduct.

You always assume a deity WILLINGLY puts that restriction in place. But wouldn't that imply there are some True Neutral deities who don't care about those rules (because they are no part of that opposing alignment game after all) and allow others to be their followers?

Probably its just a restriction how MAGIC STUFF works and they can't grant spells to people who have the wrong "Aura"?

Which rule complements your position? Mine is just as likely. And no deity would care if you could circumvent those restrictions they probably even dislike themselves?

It is by far more likely that the "code of conduct" is how the deity is positioned and wants things to be... and what it is responsible for... what it hates... what it likes.
Thats maybe even the reason that "code of conduct required by his deity" isn't written out what it is?


Alienfreak wrote:

But if you are a cleric of Lathander and burn down that forest to prevent the Baatezu from destroying Toril with that Artifact...

How exactly would that be against any of his Portfolios/Dogmas/Conducts

Because he's a good deity and its pretty evil to burn down an innocent wood, and you COULD have chosen a course of action to stop them that didn't involve doing so.

It just would have been more difficult; thats not an excuse for not pursuing it.


KrispyXIV wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:

But if you are a cleric of Lathander and burn down that forest to prevent the Baatezu from destroying Toril with that Artifact...

How exactly would that be against any of his Portfolios/Dogmas/Conducts

Because he's a good deity and its pretty evil to burn down an innocent wood, and you COULD have chosen a course of action to stop them that didn't involve doing so.

It just would have been more difficult; thats not an excuse for not pursuing it.

A good cleric is still allowed to conduct evil acts. He is no Paladin, I may remind you.

And how is burning down a wood an EVIL ACT? And how can a forest be "innocent". Probably some of those weirdo nature beasts come out of the forest once in a while and eat some human babies in the night just because they are so yummy?
Is making a house out of a tree EVIL then, too? And what about cutting stones?

Hell... there must be a lot of ex-clerics around :)


Can you name for me a single good deity who would allow their representatives to do an evil act in their name?

Because I'm not aware of any.


KrispyXIV wrote:

Can you name for me a single good deity who would allow their representatives to do an evil act in their name?

Because I'm not aware of any.

Which one doesn't?

Unless you are paladin of course. Then it is stated that its not allowed.

You are implying that if an evil cleric ever comes across a raider and slays him so he can't set the children filled kindergarden ablaze instantly looses his cleric status because it as a GOOD ACT to do so?
Or an evil instantly loses his cleric class if he ever gives a penny to a beggar because it is a GOOD ACT to do so?

Honestly?


Alienfreak wrote:
KrispyXIV wrote:

Can you name for me a single good deity who would allow their representatives to do an evil act in their name?

Because I'm not aware of any.

Which one doesn't?

Unless you are paladin of course. Then it is stated that its not allowed.

You are implying that if an evil cleric ever comes across a raider and slays him so he can't set the children filled kindergarden ablaze instantly looses his cleric status because it as a GOOD ACT to do so?
Honestly?

It's not a good act if the evil cleric isn't doing it selflessly.

And it would universally be a "gross violation" of a clerics code of conduct to perform an evil act if they follow a good deity; the same if an evil deity following cleric did something good... With the caveat that you can't do something good incidentally. Good acts are done intentionally, and generally for the benefit of others. You can't "accidentally", do good, though you could accidentally benefit someone else.


KrispyXIV wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:
KrispyXIV wrote:

Can you name for me a single good deity who would allow their representatives to do an evil act in their name?

Because I'm not aware of any.

Which one doesn't?

Unless you are paladin of course. Then it is stated that its not allowed.

You are implying that if an evil cleric ever comes across a raider and slays him so he can't set the children filled kindergarden ablaze instantly looses his cleric status because it as a GOOD ACT to do so?
Honestly?

It's not a good act if the evil cleric isn't doing it selflessly.

And it would universally be a "gross violation" of a clerics code of conduct to perform an evil act if they follow a good deity; the same if an evil deity following cleric did something good... With the caveat that you can't do something good incidentally. Good acts are done intentionally, and generally for the benefit of others. You can't "accidentally", do good, though you could accidentally benefit someone else.

So a piece of copper to a beggar is enough for an evil cleric to lose his cleric status?

Because it GROSSLY violates his gods code of conduct?


Alienfreak wrote:


So a piece of copper to a beggar is enough for an evil cleric to lose his cleric status?

Because it GROSSLY violates his gods code of conduct?

If it's legitimately an act of kindness of no personal gain to the cleric and his deity doesn't have some provision for liking beggars? Totally. 100%. That cleric likely just intentionally and willfully violated the tenets of his (evil) religion.

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When a scroll is created, the author of said scroll casts the spell into the scroll itself, expending the spell slot and essentially "sealing away" the magic.

Thus, the "evil energy" has already been released into the world. The evil act of casting evil magic has been committed. At this point, the scroll of (insert evil spell here) is now just a tool. It may be a tool created by sinister powers, but it is, itself, no more evil than a +1 scimitar made by CE drow.

Therefore, I believe that a cleric can certainly use scrolls of whatever he wishes, so long as they are not employed in such a manner as to oppose his deity's code of conduct.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because a cleric cannot prepare or cast spells of an alignment opposed to his deity, those spells are therefore not on his class spell list, which means using scrolls for those spells is considerably more difficult (requiring Use Magic Device or similar methods).


Fatespinner wrote:

When a scroll is created, the author of said scroll casts the spell into the scroll itself, expending the spell slot and essentially "sealing away" the magic.

Thus, the "evil energy" has already been released into the world. The evil act of casting evil magic has been committed. At this point, the scroll of (insert evil spell here) is now just a tool. It may be a tool created by sinister powers, but it is, itself, no more evil than a +1 scimitar made by CE drow.

Therefore, I believe that a cleric can certainly use scrolls of whatever he wishes, so long as they are not employed in such a manner as to oppose his deity's code of conduct.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because a cleric cannot prepare or cast spells of an alignment opposed to his deity, those spells are therefore not on his class spell list, which means using scrolls for those spells is considerably more difficult (requiring Use Magic Device or similar methods).

As a spell completion item, this is incorrect. The "evil energy" is only partially locked into the scroll and still needs to be released. You are effectively casting the spell in the scroll/staff/wand when you activate it, so it would fall under the same restrictions. Also, clerics don't have opposing alignment spells removed from their spell list, they just can't cast them or activate spell trigger/completion items that produce that spell effect. It roughly amounts to the same thing, but if there was a circumstance where some item could only be activated by a person with Blasphemy on their class list but it didn't actually cast the spell, a LG cleric would not be unable to do so.

Can't, of course, is very different than shouldn't.


Fatespinner wrote:

When a scroll is created, the author of said scroll casts the spell into the scroll itself, expending the spell slot and essentially "sealing away" the magic.

Thus, the "evil energy" has already been released into the world. The evil act of casting evil magic has been committed. At this point, the scroll of (insert evil spell here) is now just a tool. It may be a tool created by sinister powers, but it is, itself, no more evil than a +1 scimitar made by CE drow.

Therefore, I believe that a cleric can certainly use scrolls of whatever he wishes, so long as they are not employed in such a manner as to oppose his deity's code of conduct.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because a cleric cannot prepare or cast spells of an alignment opposed to his deity, those spells are therefore not on his class spell list, which means using scrolls for those spells is considerably more difficult (requiring Use Magic Device or similar methods).

I am not sure about your note part:

Quote:

alignment,

however, may restrict her from casting certain spells
opposed to her moral or ethical beliefs; see chaotic, evil,good, and lawful spells on page 41. A cleric must choose
and prepare her spells in advance. [...]
Clerics meditate or pray for their spells. Each cleric
must choose a time when she must spend 1 hour each day
in quiet contemplation or supplication to regain her daily
allotment of spells. A cleric may prepare and cast any spell
on the cleric spell list, provided that she can cast spells
of that level, but she must choose which spells to prepare
during her daily meditation.

Technically (I think) a cleric could prepare a spell opposed to his alignment but not cast it...

Shadow Lodge

Alienfreak, you might be happier playing under the rules variant that ignores alignment. Otherwise, perhaps you should consider taking the rules in their most restrictive interpretation - if, for no other reason than that's what rules do. They set limits.

Loopholes make for a weaker game.

Again, ignore alignment completely, and you get a game you like AND get to avoid getting flagged for inappropriate language. It's a win-win!

As to the difference between Paladins and Clerics:

Paladins get punished for violating their deity's wishes ONCE.

Clerics get punished for violating their deity's wishes repetitively or explicitly.

That's the difference, as I see it. Any interpretation of cleric that allows for anti-deity behavior on a regular basis is just another quest for a loophole.

And, as others have said, if you want a divine caster without a deity, those classes exist.

Finally, if you're looking into what each specific deity stands for, that information should be available in your campaign guide as well. The Inner Sea guide gives a half-page to each major deity, pretty much setting the tone for what works and what doesn't. It may also help to imagine that the deity in the game world is a real, living, breathing thing. One who gives magic out to further its own agenda. If you, your GM, and the other players at your table agree that the deity stands for your casting those spells, then go for it. You'll probably wind up with an alignment adjustment over it, due to the impact of frequent use of aligned spells, but still.


mcbobbo wrote:

Alienfreak, you might be happier playing under the rules variant that ignores alignment. Otherwise, perhaps you should consider taking the rules in their most restrictive interpretation - if, for no other reason than that's what rules do. They set limits.

Loopholes make for a weaker game.

Again, ignore alignment completely, and you get a game you like AND get to avoid getting flagged for inappropriate language. It's a win-win!

As to the difference between Paladins and Clerics:

Paladins get punished for violating their deity's wishes ONCE.

Clerics get punished for violating their deity's wishes repetitively or explicitly.

That's the difference, as I see it. Any interpretation of cleric that allows for anti-deity behavior on a regular basis is just another quest for a loophole.

And, as others have said, if you want a divine caster without a deity, those classes exist.

Finally, if you're looking into what each specific deity stands for, that information should be available in your campaign guide as well. The Inner Sea guide gives a half-page to each major deity, pretty much setting the tone for what works and what doesn't. It may also help to imagine that the deity in the game world is a real, living, breathing thing. One who gives magic out to further its own agenda. If you, your GM, and the other players at your table agree that the deity stands for your casting those spells, then go for it. You'll probably wind up with an alignment adjustment over it, due to the impact of frequent use of aligned spells, but still.

The difference between Paladins and Clerics per rules is, as Fatespinner has pointed out, that a Paladin may not:

-Become unlawful by alignment
-Comit evil acts (this includes using evil spells which is an evil act per rules)
-Violating the rules of coduct of a god (this depends on the the god and which rules he and his clergy lives after)

A cleric may not:
-GROSSLY violate the rules of conduct of a god (this depends on the god and which rules he and his clergy lives after)

So if you are a Paladin of Lathander and your companion has an Undead who uses them in combat to your favour you most likely are required to destroy it, because Lathander hates all undead and thinks they have to be destroyed. And if you don't you violate his conduct because you did let an Undead help you.
But if you are an Cleric of Lathander you maybe even have an Undead help you because it "only" violates the rules of conduct. If you start creating Undead it would most likely GROSSLY violate his conduct and you would be in deep trouble.

Using common sense to see the difference between two wordings (violating and grossly violating plus explicit use of the word evil act and the nonexistance of the word "act" in the cleric description alone) is not wanting to play WITHOUT the rules at all. Its just rather sticking to the Rules As Written and maybe in this event even Rules As Intended (because both stick together here rather well).
Stretching the rules and making every penny you give to a beggar an gross violation of any evil deities conduct is rather more far from the rules than my interpretation, I guess.

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I removed a post using unacceptable language.

Shadow Lodge

Alienfreak wrote:
Using common sense to see the difference between two wordings (violating and grossly violating plus explicit use of the word evil act and the nonexistance of the word "act" in the cleric description alone) is not wanting to play WITHOUT the rules at all. Its just rather sticking to the Rules As Written and maybe in this event even Rules As Intended (because both stick together here rather well).

Didn't I say already that it would either take more than one act or an explicit act? I'm pretty sure I said that.

Alienfreak wrote:
Stretching the rules and making every penny you give to a beggar an gross violation of any evil deities conduct is rather more far from the rules than my interpretation, I guess.

Again, when did I ever say that clerics get only once chance?

On the other hand, is it not your position that ONLY A SINGLE grossly violate act counts? Because by arguing against my 'little acts add up' position, that is essential what you mean, is it not?

Anyway, I think the spell would cast. Game effects apply, and all that. Make a habit out of doing things your deity doesn't appreciate and your powers go away. That's pretty clear, too. Also if you make a habit out of using aligned powers, your own alignment shifts. That's also RAW.

So, what's the topic, again?


mcbobbo wrote:


Again, when did I ever say that clerics get only once chance?

On the other hand, is it not your position that ONLY A SINGLE grossly violate act counts? Because by arguing against my 'little acts add up' position, that is essential what you mean, is it not?

Anyway, I think the spell would cast. Game effects apply, and all that. Make a habit out of doing things your deity doesn't appreciate and your powers go away. That's pretty clear, too. Also if you make a habit out of using aligned powers, your own alignment shifts. That's also RAW.

So, what's the topic, again?

You are wrong here.

You change alignment if you act more towards an alignment which is not your own than to your own.

So a cleric who would cast Summon Monster for celestial creatures [good] about 5 times per day and uses an Animate Undead which is an [evil] spell about 5 times in his career won't get his alignment changed.

Even if you use a [evil] spell once per day and about 3-5 [good] spells per day you won't change alignment because you do more evil spells than good ones. That would be rather stupid because if you would be Lawful Evil then you would end up using 5x the good spells per day and instantly shift back to good.

You would have to try hard to generate more acts opposing your alignment than matching yours in any case. Because it is harder to do things opposing it than the ones matching it.

The topic is if he can. And I guess since its on the class list (he can prepare them according to the rules but not cast them) and its a spell completion Item he could use them.
The "your deity hates you because you gave a penny to a beggar" thing is purely subjective and up to your DM because it is not supported by the rules even a bit. And I guess if you play with such an DM you already know you shouldn't do such things ;)


Why are people looking for a short easily exploitable list of loophole filled tenants?

Clerics lose their powers if they do something that grossly violates their code. Whether or not you violate the code is (ultimately) determined by the GM.

Now some people are going to whine about "oh no that's subjective! I can't number crunch that! That can't be RAW!" But these people are wrong. The mechanism is the judgement of a God/Goddess. What better game mechanic could there be to represent this than having the GM judge you?

For the beggar example, if you're evil, you can most certainly give a pauper a penny if you get something out of it. Heck, you might be validated if your wish is to 'appear' good. If I was CE, I'd give a pauper platinum in plain sight, so the other hobos would revile him and try to murder him for his new found wealth.

Unless as an Evil Cleric I my faith said I can't give anything away things for free. In which case I would have to trade something.

The argument of 'It's the only way' doesn't bend the restrictions of your faith. Burning down a forest is most certainly an evil act, because you don't know everything that was in that forest, and obliterating a wide swath of nature and everyone/everything in it with the hand wave of "well, they were probably evil too" doesn't justify your acts. If you're a good cleric, and do this, even if it was the only way to succeed it still is evil and you must atone for it.


Sekret_One wrote:

Why are people looking for a short easily exploitable list of loophole filled tenants?

Clerics lose their powers if they do something that grossly violates their code. Whether or not you violate the code is (ultimately) determined by the GM.

Now some people are going to whine about "oh no that's subjective! I can't number crunch that! That can't be RAW!" But these people are wrong. The mechanism is the judgement of a God/Goddess. What better game mechanic could there be to represent this than having the GM judge you?

For the beggar example, if you're evil, you can most certainly give a pauper a penny if you get something out of it. Heck, you might be validated if your wish is to 'appear' good. If I was CE, I'd give a pauper platinum in plain sight, so the other hobos would revile him and try to murder him for his new found wealth.

Unless as an Evil Cleric I my faith said I can't give anything away things for free. In which case I would have to trade something.

The argument of 'It's the only way' doesn't bend the restrictions of your faith. Burning down a forest is most certainly an evil act, because you don't know everything that was in that forest, and obliterating a wide swath of nature and everyone/everything in it with the hand wave of "well, they were probably evil too" doesn't justify your acts. If you're a good cleric, and do this, even if it was the only way to succeed it still is evil and you must atone for it.

What part about "rules question" did you miss, just as Krispy?

This is not about how you see "good and evil" and how things should work out when you DM or how you project your morale viewpoints onto the game rules.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Alienfreak wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Basically for a cleric, a spell that's forbidden to them by alignment is something that I treat as not on their class list. i.e. for a Good Cleric, Dispel Good is not on thier list.
Thats actually a good way of handling it but its still a house rule :)

All rules are house rules, only certain house rules have more RAW backing than others. My reading is a valid consequence of RAW. If you can't cast the spell because it's effectively off your list, that means you can't make such an item, nor can you use it without Use Magic Device. (and quite possibly atoning for the consequences later)


LazarX wrote:
Alienfreak wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Basically for a cleric, a spell that's forbidden to them by alignment is something that I treat as not on their class list. i.e. for a Good Cleric, Dispel Good is not on thier list.
Thats actually a good way of handling it but its still a house rule :)

All rules are house rules, only certain house rules have more RAW backing than others. My reading is a valid consequence of RAW. If you can't cast the spell because it's effectively off your list, that means you can't make such an item, nor can you use it without Use Magic Device.

Thats incorrect per RAW.

The spells are still on the Cleric Class List and nothing prevents them from preparing those spells in a spellslot, you just can't cast them according to RAW.


Alienfreak appears to be correct. There is nothing stopping clerics from using scrolls, wands, staffs, or other items to use spells outside of their own castings. The argument that it is somehow a gross violation of their deity's code of conduct is hogwash, and easily provable otherwise. A neutral good deity will have clerics that are both lawful and chaotic, and a lawful cleric using a scroll of protection from law to ward against the mental domination of a lawful creature wouldn't be breaking any (non-existant) tenants.

This is similar to a Paladin who can legally wield an unholy weapon (the weapon enhancement) if they accept the fact they gain a negative level while wielding the weapon. The paladin may even have legitimate reasons for doing so, just as fighting a fallen angel, or because the weapon has other features that are needed (a +5 unholy weapon can be used to pierce the DR of a powerful fiend, for example).

By observing how the rules function, it seems far more likely that the inability to cast the corresponding spells comes from the cleric and not the deity, as a lawful good cleric of a neutral good god cannot cast a chaotic spell. It seems more logical that clerics cannot easily cast things so far from their own spiritual path.

Making up excuses, misinformation, and being antagonistic as LazarX has been doing to Alienfreak is shameful. We are discussing a rules question on the rules questions board, and as written, yes you can do so. Anything else is not part of the game.


Spell Completion:
"All that's left to do is perform the finishing parts of the spellcasting."
Seems pretty clear to me that in this case the cleric is in fact casting the spell, so this should be impossible for prohibited spells.

Spell Trigger:
"Spell trigger items can be used by anyone whose class can cast the corresponding spell."
More of a gray area, but it seems to me that the obvious interpretation would be that a cleric belongs to a class which cannot cast spells of the opposing alignment.

As to RAW in general, it is the job of the DM to interpret the rules in a fair manner which reflects their intent, not to read the text in the strictest and most context-free way possible. Otherwise you have dead creatures taking actions because nothing explicitly says they can't.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ashiel wrote:
Alienfreak appears to be correct. There is nothing stopping clerics from using scrolls, wands, staffs, or other items to use spells outside of their own castings.

Except of course the rules. Specifically as to a caster interacts with items that use spells that are not in your spell list. And if you can prepare and cast those spells, they're not in your list.

I've stated time and time again if a cleric really wants to use spell trigger items and scrolls of forbidden magic, he needs to invest in UMD skill to do so. THAT IS ALLOWED by the rules text. A GM would have to judge each usage as to whether atonement is something that would need to be done afterward.

Protection from Law to fight an crazy Angel, maybe. Unholy Blight to do the same... then you're in touchy territory.


LazarX wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Alienfreak appears to be correct. There is nothing stopping clerics from using scrolls, wands, staffs, or other items to use spells outside of their own castings.
Except of course the rules. Specifically as to a caster interacts with items that use spells that are not in your spell list. And if you can prepare and cast those spells, they're not in your list.

As written a cleric can prepare any spell on the cleric spell list. Period. A cleric, however, cannot cast spells opposed to their alignment. A Lawful Neutral cleric can legally prepare a Protection from Law, but cannot cast the spell. If during this time they were subjected to a helm of opposite alignment, they would suddenly be able to actually cast the spell they have prepared.

You are, factually, making things up LazarX, and it's very annoying to see people making stuff up on the Rules Questions board. This is not "the rules how you want them to be" it is the "rules as they are". According to the core rules, a cleric never loses the spell from their spell list. They are just prohibited from casting them.

Quote:
I've stated time and time again if a cleric really wants to use spell trigger items and scrolls of forbidden magic, he needs to invest in UMD skill to do so. THAT IS ALLOWED by the rules text. A GM would have to judge each usage as to whether atonement is something that would need to be done afterward.

You've stated time and time again, but you are factually wrong according to the rules. Atonement and such aside, there is nothing preventing a cleric from using items to do so. If you want further evidence, they could do so in 3.5 as well. Compare the cleric and wizard entry, where the wizard entry specifically notes that they cannot use items such as scrolls and wands to cast their opposed spells, while clerics suffer no similar restriction.

Quote:
Protection from Law to fight an crazy Angel, maybe. Unholy Blight to do the same... then you're in touchy territory.

This is the same thing. How amazingly biased we appear to be. Logically there is no difference between a lawful good cleric using magic circle against law and magic circle against good. Or even animate dead or contagion. The only difference is that one is Chaos and one in Evil. In D&D terms, both are on equal footing.

Now of course, since D&D alignment shatters to pieces if you don't take intent and cause into your reasoning with any sort of action that is arguably aligned, I would look at how and why the cleric was doing such things. If the cleric popped a Magic Circle vs Law to fight an evil Monk who was disrupting the peace, then that seems justifiable because it is also arguably a lawful action to stop him. Likewise, using animate dead to create soldiers to stop a hobgoblin horde from sweeping through a village (if only to buy time for the villagers to escape) would have to be neutral because of the selfless way that the lawful good cleric did so (not for his own power but to save the lives of others).

Unlike Paladins, clerics are not held to such extreme standards. You can indeed have a cleric in an order that is a bit of a fringe case. A cleric can make mistakes, and can act outside their alignment somewhat if they need to. Clerics are far less likely to have alignment issues than Paladins, since a cleric can remain a cleric as long as he or she is within 1 step of her deity's alignment; and can always be a cleric of something else if the cleric has a change of heart.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
LazarX wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Alienfreak appears to be correct. There is nothing stopping clerics from using scrolls, wands, staffs, or other items to use spells outside of their own castings.

Except of course the rules. Specifically as to a caster interacts with items that use spells that are not in your spell list. And if you can not prepare and cast those spells, they're not in your list.

I've stated time and time again if a cleric really wants to use spell trigger items and scrolls of forbidden magic, he needs to invest in UMD skill to do so. THAT IS ALLOWED by the rules text. A GM would have to judge each usage as to whether atonement is something that would need to be done afterward.

Protection from Law to fight an crazy Angel, maybe. Unholy Blight to do the same... then you're in touchy territory.

fixed errored text in original post

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ashiel wrote:

As written a cleric can prepare any spell on the cleric spell list. Period. A cleric, however, cannot cast spells opposed to their alignment. A Lawful Neutral cleric can legally prepare a Protection from Law, but cannot cast the spell. If during this time they were subjected to a helm of opposite alignment, they would suddenly be able to actually cast the spell they have prepared.

You are, factually, making things up LazarX, and it's very annoying to see people making stuff up on the Rules Questions board. This is not "the rules how you want them to be" it is the "rules as they are". According to the core rules, a cleric never loses the spell from their spell list. They are just prohibited from casting them.

I'd watch casting about accusations if I were you. Clerics do not prepare spells from a spellbook like wizards. They petition their dieties for them. If they are forbidden from casting those spells, do you really thing the powers are going to grant them for use??? Can you not see the logical dissonance in your claim?


Accusations? No my friend, observations. I can see you believe their to be a logical dissonance, but there isn't. As written they can do so. That part is factual (see we're on the Rules Questions board, not the "How Do I Think it Should Work" board).

As for deities granting spells, that's also not entirely correct. Clerics can - again factually - cast spells without being attuned to a particular deity, or even worship multiple deities in a pantheon. Clerics are workers of spiritual magic, just as adepts are. A cleric that has chosen to follow a specific deity cannot cast spells opposed to their deity's alignment or their own (for clerics without deities it is merely opposed to their own alignment). This is fact.

The argument that it is the deity that causes this issue is demonstrate-ably false. A lawful good cleric of a Neutral good goddess cannot cast Chaotic spells, even though all the neutral good, chaotic good, or neutral clerics can cast chaos spells all day long without so much as a hiccup.

Likewise, I really could care less about whether they prepare their spells with a spellbook or not. If there was a distinction it would have noted it as the wizard class did (the wizard was barred from using wands, scrolls, and staffs).

You are just making stuff up. You don't have to like it, but don't be spreading misinformation around. It makes us look bad.


LazarX wrote:
I'd watch casting about accusations if I were you. Clerics do not prepare spells from a spellbook like wizards. They petition their dieties for them. If they are forbidden from casting those spells, do you really thing the powers are going to grant them for use??? Can you not see the logical dissonance in your claim?

Lazar, I dont know there's much point in arguing this further.

The section of the Cleric rules which discusses becoming an ex-cleric is being ignored/understated grossly (in a flagrant or extreme manner) here; if its not clear that purposefully and intentionally circumventing deity/alignment based restrictions on spellcasting is a gross violation of your clerics religious code of conduct, I dont know what else can be said.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
KrispyXIV wrote:
LazarX wrote:
I'd watch casting about accusations if I were you. Clerics do not prepare spells from a spellbook like wizards. They petition their dieties for them. If they are forbidden from casting those spells, do you really thing the powers are going to grant them for use??? Can you not see the logical dissonance in your claim?

Lazar, I dont know there's much point in arguing this further.

The section of the Cleric rules which discusses becoming an ex-cleric is being ignored/understated grossly (in a flagrant or extreme manner) here; if its not clear that purposefully and intentionally circumventing deity/alignment based restrictions on spellcasting is a gross violation of your clerics religious code of conduct, I dont know what else can be said.

You're absolutely right. Stick a fork in me because I'm done.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
KrispyXIV wrote:
LazarX wrote:
I'd watch casting about accusations if I were you. Clerics do not prepare spells from a spellbook like wizards. They petition their dieties for them. If they are forbidden from casting those spells, do you really thing the powers are going to grant them for use??? Can you not see the logical dissonance in your claim?

Lazar, I dont know there's much point in arguing this further.

The section of the Cleric rules which discusses becoming an ex-cleric is being ignored/understated grossly (in a flagrant and extreme manner) here; if its not clear that purposefully and intentionally circumventing deity/alignment based restrictions on spellcasting is a gross violation of your clerics religious code of conduct, I dont know what else can be said.

I think some people take the phrase 'Grossly' to mean repudiating or significantly changing your deity's credo when you preach. Under that interpretation, unless you switch what god you are worshiping, it's darn near impossible to violate their code.

To me, if you willfully do something your deity doesn't want you to do (Such as a celibate priest sleeping with someone, or a healer priest torturing someone, or an evil priest rescuing orphans for no personal gain), then you've grossly violated their code.

A minor transgression might be lusting after a woman (if you're a celibate type), or even watching an adult show, but it's not grossly violating your celibacy oaths. To me, however, if your deity says 'YOU WILL NOT CAST BLAH', and you cast blah (however you do it, whether it's UMD, or scrolls, or whatever), then you've done something they told you not to do. And you sure as heck didn't do it by accident. I'd put that down to an atonement spell at least.

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