Are there any Black gods (especially good ones) in Pathfinder?


Lost Omens Campaign Setting General Discussion

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Varisian Wanderer wrote:
The Bonuwat people are the ones that worship Desna and Gozreh as Shimye-Magalla.

Shimye-Magalla would be a really good one to develop as a distinct Mwangi god. The bit about her being nothing more than a Desna-Gozreh hybrid could be written off as a conceit of arrogant Sargavan colonists.


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The Black Butterfly - an empyreal lord who has been mentioned before as possibly an avatar of Desna is literally black.

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I like to think that with the exception of those few ascended mortals who became gods, the majority of gods don't have a specific true form. As such, their depiction in art, statues, and altars (as well as manifestations to their worshipers) reflects the local ethnicity (or even species). As such you have Abadar depicted as Taldane, or Tien, etc and likewise I could easily see Pharasma depicted to suit the local population mix.

That said, it would be very cool to have some more artwork of gods depict a wider range of ethnic groups where it would make sense to see that. :)


Actually i quite like the idea of Gozreh being a african themed god. The way it make business it's very orisha-like. I will enforce this thinking in my campaing.

Liberty's Edge

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Draco Bahamut wrote:
Actually i quite like the idea of Gozreh being a african themed god. The way it make business it's very orisha-like. I will enforce this thinking in my campaing.

This is, in fact, canonical. I mean, he's listed as a Mwangi god.

Just for the record.

Silver Crusade

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Jeven wrote:
Varisian Wanderer wrote:
The Bonuwat people are the ones that worship Desna and Gozreh as Shimye-Magalla.
Shimye-Magalla would be a really good one to develop as a distinct Mwangi god. The bit about her being nothing more than a Desna-Gozreh hybrid could be written off as a conceit of arrogant Sargavan colonists.

I would totally support this. Heck, she could be like some sort of spiritual child of Desna and Gozreh, or a being that arose from the combined faith of the Mwangi who tied those two gods together.

Hopefully when Dehrukani and Holomog get explored further, we might see some new Mwangi and Garundi gods making their debut. Or possibly see some more spotlight time on those Empyreal Lords like Jalaitatali.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I think it's worth mentioning that the Serpent's Skull AP (3rd book, I think) has a great article on the Wendo, a group of spirits that are based on an African theme, and are distinctly Garundi. In my campaign, most of the divine casters are Oracles, which I imagine are granted their powers by the Wendo, regardless of whether they are juju Oracles or not. It adds a nice, non-Euro flavor to the campaign. It's not a direct answer to the OP, and there really isn't any artwork of the individual Wendo, but why not pay your respects to Mfuello the Journeyer, or Adamde Baaka, The Jungle Spirit?


Erik Mona wrote:

To be perfectly honest there are not enough of them in the setting right now, and the ones that ought to have Garundi features ended up a goth woman with white hair, a fey-looking white dude with half a face, and a nature spirit with a pretty inhuman form.

Honestly, this has a lot to do with the pantheon and the campaign setting being designed concurrently, so the gods had largely taken form before the ethnicities of the campaign setting began to gel.

When we get around to detailing the rest of Garund we will have more of an opportunity to address this issue, but for now we don't have a lot of great options for what you are looking for.

That being said, I can easily see the folk of Thuvia imagining Abadar as a dark-skinned Garundi, and so on, so there is always that somewhat unsatisfying tactic to fall back on before we address the issue in print.

Thank you for your answer. I appreciate the fact that someone stepped in directly from Paizo to address this. I've also been noticing that the Garundi seem to be taking a slow shift from more African American/Ethopican feeling to more Morroccan/North African Arabic/dark Keleshite in the art, and this includes the Golarion wiki, is there a reason for this, just curious. I also noticed this in the few pics I've seen in for the Egyptian pantheon drawings.

On a side note I would not mind seeing some strong gods from the places in the south, the kingdom who is arming up again to fight Geb who had the women turned to stone, along with the other kingdom that muse based Aasimar are from.

It would also be nice to see more good Garundi/Wwangi gods, especially male (I noticed many settings seem to fall back on black female gods when they do attempt them - and while there is nothing wrong with this I'd like to see at least two males preferably)

I am surprised to see no Mwangi warrior gods, and am hoping to see one from the Zulu like country in the south (the one that has Zulu in the name)

Last but not least and this is my own creation a Garundi god based on how they colonize other lands, forming their own enclaves and their systems where newcomers are treated honorably for a month then starting on the lowest rung of the social ladder if they stay in that same area.

The Great Father - Garundi god of colonies
The Great father is the patron god of Garundi who form colonies in places not of their original homelands, he represents the honor given to those who follow after him and represents the traveling spirit of the Garundi. He stresses the importance of family and the belief that all Garundi are family and welcomed guests. But as with any family those who overstay their welcome must begin to earn their keep and forge their own way to repeat the cycle of welcoming any later Garundi arrivals to the community.

The Great Father's Domains: Family, Honor, Wind, Travel, Perseverance and Community

Shrines dedicated to The Great Father are raised immediately after an established Garundi community is formed. His churches are created after the community reaches a certain size to indicate that the community was successful and prosperous. Clerics and Paladins of the Great Father are known to make pilgrimages around the world to Garundi communities settling in the areas where churches of their deity have sprung up. Paladins are more frequently found in fledgling communities that have only had shrines set up. The Paladins living amongst the new communities to help defend them and vouch for them during the occasional cleric visit.

The Great Father are Neutral Good, respecting the lands that they have migrated to, but putting the wants and needs of the community before everything. It is also said that he is accompanied by orishas who represent different family members in a new community. The most famous of these Orishas is his companion/wife Nia who is also NG, her domains are Family, Travel, Healing and Compassion. Wives of Garundi households are the ones who make the first meeting of a new family arriving to a community. It is Nia's tenets that they follow:

"Always welcome our people with open arms"
"A warm house and warm smile are the best cures for the wary"
"Welcoming a traveller is no different from welcoming a new child into the world"

The Great Father's weapons are a long twisted traveling stick that is still alive and has leaves or flowers growing from it for his Clerics while his Paladins use the Garundi blades known as Flyssas, a fine weapon for protecting fledgling settlements.

Appearance; While both being old deities both The Great Father and Nia have an appearance of being in perfect shape in their late twenties early thirties, but their grey hair worn in long dreads are a contrast to show their true age. They are primarily worshipped by young couples and families who strike out to start a new Garundi community far away from home.

As with many of the other gods The Great Father's enemy is Rovagug who for him represents the destruction of communities and families. Clerics and Paladins of The Great Father are merciless in their dealings with followers of Rovagug, especially if such enclaves are nearby Garundi colonies, turning a mostly defensive approach into offensive or demanding that the new colony move to greener pastures if the enemy number of Rovagug followers are too great. Both Clerics and Paladins of The Great Father are known for destroying Rovagug cults on their travels if they are able but they are not willing to fight a losing battle as they know their importance to the new Garundi communities they must protect.

I'd also look into the Orishas, Shango and Olorun

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olorun
Olorun

Shango
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shango

Silver Crusade

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Not to put words in Erik's mouth, but I want to say that what you're seeing there is actually the range that has always existed for the Grundi rather than an actual shift. Even back in the earliest days of the setting as it is now, the Garundi seemed to cover a wide range all the way from dark-skinned Seelah to the lighter folks you might find in Osirion(and Osirion itself seems to have a pretty wide range in skin tones in its Garundi populace alone, looking at Mummy's Mask).

That said, there have been pieces of art that were a tad pale and Caucasian in features for characters that were probably intended to be Garundi or Mwangi in the past(Serpent's Skull ran into this problem in a couple of spots, I believe) and there were some issues getting the right artwork for the right ethnicities to match the regions where they were the majority(Heart of the Jungle, some of the Alkenstar artwork). I believe things have improved though, particularly looking at Mummy's Mask, which has been wonderful for representing the ethnicity native to the region.

Mummy's Mask also introduced the first appropriate artwork for Ekujae elves.(well, half-elf, but still!) :)

Amaziah Hadithi wrote:
On a side note I would not mind seeing some strong gods from the places in the south, the kingdom who is arming up again to fight Geb who had the women turned to stone, along with the other kingdom that muse based Aasimar are from.

YES. Dehrukani(Mwangi/azata nation!) and Holomog(Amazon dino-riders!) have been on my NEED MORE NOW PLZ list ever since they were first mentioned. :D


*Correction

The Great Father's Clerics staffs and staves are usually a twisted branch which is a walking stick, usually a formation of twisted tree branches that are still alive from a fruit tree. The staff still fruits and provides the clerics and any accompanying them with additional sustenance when none can be found. The fruit any type that have strong enough branches that can be used as a walking stick. Most of the time these are native Garund fruit trees.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Draco Bahamut wrote:
Actually i quite like the idea of Gozreh being a african themed god. The way it make business it's very orisha-like. I will enforce this thinking in my campaing.

This is, in fact, canonical. I mean, he's listed as a Mwangi god.

Just for the record.

Okay. I was just saying that i have approved it. The only interesting thing missing is that the Orishas really like gifts and offerings. If Paizo do a Mwangi pantheon, they could take a lot of ideas from the Yoruba and make gods that don't overlap with existing gods and can be great companions for Gozreh. Like a Volcano god/godess, the trickster nature, the tides, the undersea, the smoke, resourcefullness etc...

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Draco Bahamut wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Draco Bahamut wrote:
Actually i quite like the idea of Gozreh being a african themed god. The way it make business it's very orisha-like. I will enforce this thinking in my campaing.

This is, in fact, canonical. I mean, he's listed as a Mwangi god.

Just for the record.

Okay. I was just saying that i have approved it. The only interesting thing missing is that the Orishas really like gifts and offerings. If Paizo do a Mwangi pantheon, they could take a lot of ideas from the Yoruba and make gods that don't overlap with existing gods and can be great companions for Gozreh. Like a Volcano god/godess, the trickster nature, the tides, the undersea, the smoke, resourcefullness etc...

The Wendo fit this trope rather well. They may not be "gods" but they are certainly mighty outsiders. Perhaps Gozreh is an ascended Wendo?


Mikaze wrote:

Not to put words in Erik's mouth, but I want to say that what you're seeing there is actually the range that has always existed for the Grundi rather than an actual shift. Even back in the earliest days of the setting as it is now, the Garundi seemed to cover a wide range all the way from dark-skinned Seelah to the lighter folks you might find in Osirion(and Osirion itself seems to have a pretty wide range in skin tones in its Garundi populace alone, looking at Mummy's Mask).

That said, there have been pieces of art that were a tad pale and Caucasian in features for characters that were probably intended to be Garundi or Mwangi in the past(Serpent's Skull ran into this problem in a couple of spots, I believe) and there were some issues getting the right artwork for the right ethnicities to match the regions where they were the majority(Heart of the Jungle, some of the Alkenstar artwork). I believe things have improved though, particularly looking at Mummy's Mask, which has been wonderful for representing the ethnicity native to the region.

Mummy's Mask also introduced the first appropriate artwork for Ekujae elves.(well, half-elf, but still!) :)

Amaziah Hadithi wrote:
On a side note I would not mind seeing some strong gods from the places in the south, the kingdom who is arming up again to fight Geb who had the women turned to stone, along with the other kingdom that muse based Aasimar are from.
YES. Dehrukani(Mwangi/azata nation!) and Holomog(Amazon dino-riders!) have been on my NEED MORE NOW PLZ list ever since they were first mentioned. :D

Read up on the Candaces of Meroe, I think the lady warriors might have been inspired by them and if they haven't they should be. One of them and her army took on Alexander the Great and his forces.

You can read about her here
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candace_of_Mero%C3%AB


Amaziah Hadithi wrote:

Read up on the Candaces of Meroe, I think the lady warriors might have been inspired by them and if they haven't they should be. One of them and her army took on Alexander the Great and his forces.

You can read about her here
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candace_of_Mero%C3%AB

Or at least took on Alexander in the legends written long after the fact.

The real Alexander never made it that far nor as far as I know is there much evidence of Nubian lady warriors or even warrior queens. Apparently there are bas-reliefs showing one of the kentakes (=Candace=Queen) armored in battle. Of course, it's never sure that such aren't symbolic or propaganda.

edit: None of which means they couldn't been inspired by the legends.

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thejeff wrote:
Amaziah Hadithi wrote:

Read up on the Candaces of Meroe, I think the lady warriors might have been inspired by them and if they haven't they should be. One of them and her army took on Alexander the Great and his forces.

You can read about her here
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candace_of_Mero%C3%AB

Or at least took on Alexander in the legends written long after the fact.

The real Alexander never made it that far nor as far as I know is there much evidence of Nubian lady warriors or even warrior queens. Apparently there are bas-reliefs showing one of the kentakes (=Candace=Queen) armored in battle. Of course, it's never sure that such aren't symbolic or propaganda.

edit: None of which means they couldn't been inspired by the legends.

Actually, the earliest forms of the Alexander legend place the Amazon Queen in Kashmir or thereabouts, which - interestingly enough - is also the location of the Kingdom of Women in both Chinese (the Journey to the West features this locale) and Indian legend (Strirajya). The Ladakh region adjoining Kashmir has a tradition of polyandry and female autonomy, though it is not a matriarchy.

The "Queen Mother" of Meroe seems to have been confused with the Indian queen; in part this is because in the tradition of "wonder tales" all matriarchies/matrilocal societies are rolled up into one. Maybe the men writing them couldn't imagine that multiple and distant societies would have the same notions of female equality?

As to the "Amazons" of Garund, we may connect them as an idea to the all-woman royal guard of Dahomey.

Paizo Employee Associate Editor

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Not exactly gods, but Nnendi Okorafor's books have made want to see a Pathfinder take on masquerades/egungun.

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I've noticed that the three gods in the core pantheon that originate from Garund are all Neutral and represent opposing concepts (sea/sky, birth/death, creation/destruction). It may be a coincidence, or it may say something about Garundi/Mwangi culture and/or theology.


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Mikaze wrote:

Not to put words in Erik's mouth, but I want to say that what you're seeing there is actually the range that has always existed for the Grundi rather than an actual shift. Even back in the earliest days of the setting as it is now, the Garundi seemed to cover a wide range all the way from dark-skinned Seelah to the lighter folks you might find in Osirion(and Osirion itself seems to have a pretty wide range in skin tones in its Garundi populace alone, looking at Mummy's Mask).

That said, there have been pieces of art that were a tad pale and Caucasian in features for characters that were probably intended to be Garundi or Mwangi in the past(Serpent's Skull ran into this problem in a couple of spots, I believe) and there were some issues getting the right artwork for the right ethnicities to match the regions where they were the majority(Heart of the Jungle, some of the Alkenstar artwork). I believe things have improved though, particularly looking at Mummy's Mask, which has been wonderful for representing the ethnicity native to the region.

Mummy's Mask also introduced the first appropriate artwork for Ekujae elves.(well, half-elf, but still!) :)

Amaziah Hadithi wrote:
On a side note I would not mind seeing some strong gods from the places in the south, the kingdom who is arming up again to fight Geb who had the women turned to stone, along with the other kingdom that muse based Aasimar are from.
YES. Dehrukani(Mwangi/azata nation!) and Holomog(Amazon dino-riders!) have been on my NEED MORE NOW PLZ list ever since they were first mentioned. :D

This is for Erik as well. I highly recommend using Mshindo Kuumba for your Garundi and Mwangi artwork, He would do a great job creating some black gods and has done everything from videogame artwork to covers and work for DC comics. If you need some one to do black gods right Mshindo is your man.

Here is his Deviant Art gallery
http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/gallery/

Some art he has that would fit for Mwangis
http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/art/Blood-Of-The-Titans-cover-fin-278317031

An example of a Mwangi type god
http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/art/Anikulapo-Poster-art-273524543

An Osirion Garundi typed character
http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/art/Pharon-color-155228176

More Mwangi type art
http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/art/Sword-and-Soul-Dossouye-cover-146382267

http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/art/Legend-of-Golden-Claw-342172280

An Osirion styled character
http://mshindo9.deviantart.com/art/Pheonix-Rises-133940619

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Great topic and thanks for posting this. I would love to see more characters in the pages of Paizo products and other game publishers feature more people of color. Exalted (White Wolf) was the first game that I can remember which had an African-American character featured on the cover of the core book (Harmonious Jade). Everyone wants to be a hero, which is why we play RPGs, but it would be cool to see heroes that look like me in the pages of the books that I play.


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Erik Mona wrote:

To be perfectly honest there are not enough of them in the setting right now, and the ones that ought to have Garundi features ended up a goth woman with white hair, a fey-looking white dude with half a face, and a nature spirit with a pretty inhuman form.

Honestly, this has a lot to do with the pantheon and the campaign setting being designed concurrently, so the gods had largely taken form before the ethnicities of the campaign setting began to gel.

When we get around to detailing the rest of Garund we will have more of an opportunity to address this issue, but for now we don't have a lot of great options for what you are looking for.

That being said, I can easily see the folk of Thuvia imagining Abadar as a dark-skinned Garundi, and so on, so there is always that somewhat unsatisfying tactic to fall back on before we address the issue in print.

Sorry for quoting your post again but I just want to mention why I am here asking this.

Right now I am awaiting the MMO that you guys are making which is Pathfinder Online. I would really like to be a Cleric, but when I look around the only god that I half find to my liking that I will be able to choose from will be Sarenrae a god of another continent. Even the Egyptian Pantheon which is coming to prominence is not a choice in the videogame, and while I know and understand that minority players really are the minority in a pen and paper game, there are far more of us playing videogames. I've played Pathfinder before, and honestly am fine with "waiting" on things in official text. But with a videogame its different, there should be more choices and options including one good option for people of color. By having to "wait" for Garund to be fleshed out there is a minute chance that one of these "black gods" that -might- get added be added as an official choice in the game. Videogames get far more exposure than pen and paper games and to give an example its no different from how DC comics tends to add more characters of color to their tv shows and videogames even though the comic universe is a bit lacking in comparison. More people play videogames and watch tv. Especially mmos.

And honestly I find my complete lack of choice in the upcoming online game disappointing.

Now on another note to be a good sport if the Pathfinder Society ever runs a Starstone challenge event for official ascension into canon. I'd like to be first called on the list. I want to take this challenge and I will win and I have no problem in doing it in your game universe officially.

Thanks for listening once more. I will leave this alone now.


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Here're some great (to me) depictions of the Orishas (with brief notes on inter-relationships & areas of concern) - 20 in all:

Yoruba African Orishas by James C. Lewis

Carry on!

--C.

<Edit> Fixed the link.


Psiphyre wrote:

Here're some great (to me) depictions of the Orishas (with brief notes on inter-relationships & areas of concern) - 20 in all:

Yoruba African Orishas by James C. Lewis

Carry on!

--C.

<Edit> Fixed the link.

I am an extreme fan of that project, especially a fan of Shango, Osumare and the Rainbow Serpent (a dragon) and Ogun.

If Ogun was in I'd totally make a cleric of his or Osumare

Liberty's Edge

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Psiphyre wrote:

Here're some great (to me) depictions of the Orishas (with brief notes on inter-relationships & areas of concern) - 20 in all:

Yoruba African Orishas by James C. Lewis

Those are STUNNING. Thank you so much for the link!


You're welcome!

(^_')=b

-- C.


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Some people on this thread have listed various gods as having various ethnicities. I don't think this is really accurate.

Aroden, Iomedae, Norgorber, and Cayden Caylien all were once human and passed the test of the starstone to become immortal. So they have a definite ethnicity.

The older gods, though, like Pharasma, Sarenrae, Gozreh, etc. all predate humans. They are not and have never been human beings and if they choose to reveal themselves in human form they can do so in any form they like. So they should not be seen as having a specific ethnicity.

People of any given culture will probably portray these gods as people belonging to their culture. So to a Keleshite, Sarenrae will be envisioned as a Keleshite, whereas to a Mwangi Sarenrae will be portrayed as a Mwangi.

If you have a Mwangi or Garundi character he or she should feel free to revere any of these older gods in their "dark-skinned" aspect. They can even get into arguments with northern clerics about whether or not the god is actually black.

For the record, I think Sarenrae would make a very striking black goddess.


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Peet wrote:

Some people on this thread have listed various gods as having various ethnicities. I don't think this is really accurate.

Aroden, Iomedae, Norgorber, and Cayden Caylien all were once human and passed the test of the starstone to become immortal. So they have a definite ethnicity.

The older gods, though, like Pharasma, Sarenrae, Gozreh, etc. all predate humans. They are not and have never been human beings and if they choose to reveal themselves in human form they can do so in any form they like. So they should not be seen as having a specific ethnicity.

People of any given culture will probably portray these gods as people belonging to their culture. So to a Keleshite, Sarenrae will be envisioned as a Keleshite, whereas to a Mwangi Sarenrae will be portrayed as a Mwangi.

If you have a Mwangi or Garundi character he or she should feel free to revere any of these older gods in their "dark-skinned" aspect. They can even get into arguments with northern clerics about whether or not the god is actually black.

For the record, I think Sarenrae would make a very striking black goddess.

The reason why people list the gods as having an ethnicity is because the Inner Sea World Guide listed them as having them. I thought it was kind of a dumb move in some cases like explicitly stating that Norgorber is Taldan when mystery is the point of his character or Gorum being Kellid because I preferred the theory that he's Half-Orc and has to hide it or else his worshipers would turn on him.

That is where the idea of Sarenrae being Keleshite (Persian) or Gozreh being Mwangi (African) comes from. If you want to reconcile the idea of them having an ethnicity and predating humans, think about this: who created mortals? The idea of natural evolution gets fuzzy when magic and indisputably real gods are involved. Perhaps some gods made mortals more like them: the gods don't look human; the humans look like gods. This idea is supported by the fact that other important races having their own gods who look like them like Calistria for the Elves.


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I had thought the listing of "nationality" was actually a note from which culture/race/ethnicity the deity in question originated/ was historically prominent, and from which was contributed to the overall "pantheon" of the particular region, e.g. Rovagug is listed as "monster" in that his primary/"historical" worship was initially among the monsterous races. NOT that the "nationality" listing indicated the ACTUAL race/ethnicity of the deity. (Rovagug is qlippoth.)

Gorum is Kellid in that, eventhough we're told that he originated from the first conflict between orcs and human tribes (& thus could be seen as the "first half-orc"), it was amongst the human (Kellid) tribes that his worship became most prominent, hence his association with the Kellid culture/ethnicity (eventhough he's really just a godly suit of armor & more like a graveknight than a Kellid or half-orc...).

Look at Desna, for example. She's listed as Varisian for her nationality, eventhough she is most often depicted as an elf with butterfly wings, and her origin implies that she's actually some alien, seemingly butterfly-like entity from the depths of space...

My take on this was that her worship amongst the Varisians is what led to her prominence in the Inner Sea Region, and hence her association with that culture/ethnicity. (For surely she's been worshipped by the elves for a LONGER time, & they predate Varisian culture, IIRC. So why isn't she listed as an elf under nationality?). My reading of it is that she is not actually Varisian (nor an elf), just that they led to the spread of her worship in the Inner Sea (& beyond).

Don't know if any of that makes sense... Looong day.

...Whatever. <shrug> They're gods. They can appear as whatever they please at any particular time. And their wide-range of worshippers will depict them as whatever is felt to be appropriate to the particular worshipper. Just my thought on the matter.

Carry on, I guess.

--C.


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Peet wrote:

Some people on this thread have listed various gods as having various ethnicities. I don't think this is really accurate.

Aroden, Iomedae, Norgorber, and Cayden Caylien all were once human and passed the test of the starstone to become immortal. So they have a definite ethnicity.

The older gods, though, like Pharasma, Sarenrae, Gozreh, etc. all predate humans. They are not and have never been human beings and if they choose to reveal themselves in human form they can do so in any form they like. So they should not be seen as having a specific ethnicity.

People of any given culture will probably portray these gods as people belonging to their culture. So to a Keleshite, Sarenrae will be envisioned as a Keleshite, whereas to a Mwangi Sarenrae will be portrayed as a Mwangi.

If you have a Mwangi or Garundi character he or she should feel free to revere any of these older gods in their "dark-skinned" aspect. They can even get into arguments with northern clerics about whether or not the god is actually black.

For the record, I think Sarenrae would make a very striking black goddess.

The problem is. The art show them all as european looking. Even Gozreh who is a elemental being have a european nose and lips. There is no art showing their "mwangi" or anything other aspects. So it's hard to see the black divinity in them.


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Psiphyre wrote:

I had thought the listing of "nationality" was actually a note from which culture/race/ethnicity the deity in question originated/ was historically prominent, and from which was contributed to the overall "pantheon" of the particular region, e.g. Rovagug is listed as "monster" in that his primary/"historical" worship was initially among the monsterous races. NOT that the "nationality" listing indicated the ACTUAL race/ethnicity of the deity. (Rovagug is qlippoth.)

Gorum is Kellid in that, eventhough we're told that he originated from the first conflict between orcs and human tribes (& thus could be seen as the "first half-orc"), it was amongst the human (Kellid) tribes that his worship became most prominent, hence his association with the Kellid culture/ethnicity (eventhough he's really just a godly suit of armor & more like a graveknight than a Kellid or half-orc...).

Look at Desna, for example. She's listed as Varisian for her nationality, eventhough she is most often depicted as an elf with butterfly wings, and her origin implies that she's actually some alien, seemingly butterfly-like entity from the depths of space...

My take on this was that her worship amongst the Varisians is what led to her prominence in the Inner Sea Region, and hence her association with that culture/ethnicity. (For surely she's been worshipped by the elves for a LONGER time, & they predate Varisian culture, IIRC. So why isn't she listed as an elf under nationality?). My reading of it is that she is not actually Varisian (nor an elf), just that they led to the spread of her worship in the Inner Sea (& beyond).

Don't know if any of that makes sense... Looong day.

...Whatever. <shrug> They're gods. They can appear as whatever they please at any particular time. And their wide-range of worshippers will depict them as whatever is felt to be appropriate to the particular worshipper. Just my thought on the matter.

Carry on, I guess.

--C.

Huh. Guess I didn't think of it like that. I suppose that would mean only the Ascended (Norgorber, Iomedae, Aroden, Irori, Cayden Cailean, and a couple of the Tian Xia gods, can't remember all of them off the top of my head) are actually the nationality listed.

Then again, Zon-Kuthon was listed as alien because he changed after his mysterious wanderings. By your logic he should be Varisian because I think that's who's in Nidal.

Though it could also be that the nationalities listed in the ISWG are merely the closest approximation of what the gods like to appear as. Gozreh isn't really a Mwangi but prefers to manifest as one(or two technically?) for example.

Liberty's Edge

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Mikaze wrote:
Jeven wrote:
Varisian Wanderer wrote:
The Bonuwat people are the ones that worship Desna and Gozreh as Shimye-Magalla.
Shimye-Magalla would be a really good one to develop as a distinct Mwangi god. The bit about her being nothing more than a Desna-Gozreh hybrid could be written off as a conceit of arrogant Sargavan colonists.
I would totally support this. Heck, she could be like some sort of spiritual child of Desna and Gozreh, or a being that arose from the combined faith of the Mwangi who tied those two gods together.

Not bad, but I actually liked the original flavor of "is Shimye-Magalla two gods sharing a face or one composite god? Is it Garundi or Avistani?" " ... Yes."

We need some mysteries for the gods!

In the meantime, of course, we absolutely need some more art of gods who aren't always choosing to appear Caucasian.


Aren't most of the gods beings that existed far before there were humans or ethnicities on Golarion? The only ones that I can recall that were at one time human were Aroden, The ascended,and Nethys. The rest just take forms that are familiar to their worshipers, because, lets face it, they rule over a universe full of planets.

Liberty's Edge

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Mavrickindigo wrote:
Aren't most of the gods beings that existed far before there were humans or ethnicities on Golarion? The only ones that I can recall that were at one time human were Aroden, The ascended,and Nethys. The rest just take forms that are familiar to their worshipers, because, lets face it, they rule over a universe full of planets.

You are correct. For example, there have been hints that when Desna is out in the deep black, she looks a lot more like a giant bug than a fairy-butterfly lady.

The idea makes a lot of sense, but it would still be cool to show other versions. For a 'Real World' example here are the different ways Morpheus of Dream appears to his... clients.

Minkaien

Akitani

Garundi

Avistani

Silver Crusade

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Peet wrote:
For the record, I think Sarenrae would make a very striking black goddess.

Oh I stumbled across artwork that might be perfect for that a couple of days ago. Will edit a link in if I can find it again.

Edit-Okay, I forgot about the borderline NSFW but artful covered toplessness, but still it's a beautiful design. Need to find the original source...

I think that's how I'm gonna have worshippers from Nantambu, Holomog, and Dehrukani view her.

I'd also love to see more Sarenrae art along the lines of Psiphyre's current avatar. :)


Mikaze wrote:
Peet wrote:
For the record, I think Sarenrae would make a very striking black goddess.

Oh I stumbled across artwork that might be perfect for that a couple of days ago. Will edit a link in if I can find it again.

Edit-Okay, I forgot about the borderline NSFW but artful covered toplessness, but still it's a beautiful design. Need to find the original source...

I think that's how I'm gonna have worshippers from Nantambu, Holomog, and Dehrukani view her.

I'd also love to see more Sarenrae art along the lines of Psiphyre's current avatar. :)

looks egyptian 2 me.

never viewed her as white anyway. always thought she had a bronze skin tone myself.....


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Steelfiredragon wrote:
Mikaze wrote:
Peet wrote:
For the record, I think Sarenrae would make a very striking black goddess.

Oh I stumbled across artwork that might be perfect for that a couple of days ago. Will edit a link in if I can find it again.

Edit-Okay, I forgot about the borderline NSFW but artful covered toplessness, but still it's a beautiful design. Need to find the original source...

I think that's how I'm gonna have worshippers from Nantambu, Holomog, and Dehrukani view her.

I'd also love to see more Sarenrae art along the lines of Psiphyre's current avatar. :)

looks egyptian 2 me.

never viewed her as white anyway. always thought she had a bronze skin tone myself.....

While I like Sarenrae alot (she's my fav god currently) she is not either Garundi or Mwangi.

Also its getting a bit old for gaming settings to always -just- rely on female gods (or characters for that matter) who are of color. It would be nice for it to change. Especially in Pathfinder which does try to do its best as far as representation of its countries in respectful manners.

But yet we still have not seen any true black Egyptian gods (but there will be pics of black featured sphinxes around) Alot of the artwork for Garundis tend to not look anything like the original pics of the Garundis either as it seems like more and more artists are putting them in a more Moroccan looking type, while there is nothing wrong with this, it seems as if the original looks are being avoided completely and in some pics they are not even getting a Moroccan look. I expect this type of thing from WOTC but I am surprised that its happening here.

Male black heroic gods, NG, LG, CG, not evil, not corrupt, not apathetic and (sorry ladies) not female. Not wearing armor that makes him look like some Chaos Space Marine. Just a good heroic black male god that gives a damn about his people and is always drawn that way.

Not bronze skinned not questionable, not almost black, but absolutely black and not sometimes, but all the time in all the pics they are in. Iomedae always looks the same, and so does Cayden Cailean, and worth giving a damn about both of them are -always- white, not sometimes white, not every last Tuesday white not "if I really feel like it white". The artist I put in an above earlier post does excellent work on this type of subject and he knows his stuff when it comes to rl African and black gods. Let the ancient civilizations of the setting that look certain ways have at -least- a few -good- gods that look like them. Especially male gods.

I am more than willing to work with anyone who would like to do this and I can provide professional references.

Please


Amaziah Hadithi wrote:
Also its getting a bit old for gaming settings to always -just- rely on female gods (or characters for that matter) who are of color.

You sound like you are referencing a couple of specific settings but of the dozens of fantasy campaign settings I'm at least familiar with I can't place any that fit this pattern.

What are the ones you are thinking of?

Silver Crusade

Of the good deities there are several that aren't even human.
Same for non-evil. Heck there's a living clockwork goddess
And just like they did with the Dragon Empires they will eventually do a bunch books for the Mangwi Expance, when they have an AP situated there.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

While not a god, Old-Mage Jatembe is most definitely black and NG


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Ross Byers wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Are there any Irish/German/Cherokee hybrid gods? >_>
Erastil and his CG counterpart Cerunnos are both vaguely Celtic gods.

Torag would feel at home in the Norse (and pre-Chfistian Germanic) pantheon.


The Sun Rises in the East wrote:
Mikaze wrote:

There are a number of Empyreal Lords on the good side of things. Jalaijatali is probably the most well known at the moment. Most of the rest don't have much info, though they're based on RW African deities(Oro for example).

Hopefully, if Shimye-Magalla gets fleshed out more, she'll lean good.

Isn't she just a Mwangi-ized version of that Elven goddess? (her name escapes me at the moment)

And it would have been nice to see something based on the Yoruba pantheon with its many many gods and demigods.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Yoruba_deities

And a kingdom based on Songhai
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Songhai_Empire

While I agree having the Orishas as Gods would be interesting, and I do enjoy Paizo giving us the options to add already existing mythical concepts in Pathfinder (Archdevils, some Demon & Empyeral Lords, a whole host of creatures, etc), I think that it would not be wise for them to try and add those Gods into the list of "official" deities. Unlike some of the existing pantheons that have been added to Pathfinder (Egyptian Gods, Great Old Ones, etc), there are living adherents to the Orishas today, in the form of Santeria, Voodoo, Candomble, etc. I haven't asked any followers of those religions personally, but my inkling is that they wouldn't much appreciate their gods being used to make money for a bunch of non-followers here in the States. I suppose I could be wrong though. On a tangential note, I also want to see La Santa Muerte be a psychopomp for Pharasma (and given that the religion is about as close a CN religion as I've ever I doubt many adherents would see it as a point of pride or otherwise not care).


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Nog64 wrote:


While I agree having the Orishas as Gods would be interesting, and I do enjoy Paizo giving us the options to add already existing mythical concepts in Pathfinder (Archdevils, some Demon & Empyeral Lords, a whole host of creatures, etc), I think that it would not be wise for them to try and add those Gods into the list of "official" deities. Unlike some of the existing pantheons that have been added to Pathfinder (Egyptian Gods, Great Old Ones, etc), there are living adherents to the Orishas today, in the form of Santeria, Voodoo, Candomble, etc. I haven't asked any followers of those religions personally, but my inkling is that they wouldn't much appreciate their gods being used to make money for a bunch of non-followers here in the States. I suppose I could be wrong though. On a tangential note, I also want to see La Santa Muerte be a psychopomp for Pharasma (and given that the religion is about as close a CN religion as I've ever I doubt many adherents would see it as a point of pride or otherwise not care).

They are worshiped in the city where i live, and this not keep them of appearing in a lame kung-fu-like capoeira movie in the past. Or even battling vampires in a old soap-opera.

But today i want to have the Orishas made to be spirits for the new medium class to ride.


Amaziah Hadithi wrote:


I'm a bit lost on how some of these societies are some of the oldest in the world but yet they have no gods that look like them at all on the level of an Iomedae for instance. What I'm really looking for especially is a good black god that is LG, CG or NG.

Don't confuse the artwork with the divinity. ("The map is not the territory.") A number of deities are specifically described as not being tied to any specific ethnicity, but of course, this isn't possible when you're drawing a single illustration of them.

For example, the iconic Shelyn image you get when you google is a human Caucasian woman, but according to the text "Depictions of Shelyn, regardless of race or ethnicity, show her as a young woman barely out of her youth, with eyes of blue or silver." So she could easily be drawn as a goblin or a gnome -- and often is, in-universe. A black human is no more difficult.


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Orfamay Quest wrote:
Amaziah Hadithi wrote:


I'm a bit lost on how some of these societies are some of the oldest in the world but yet they have no gods that look like them at all on the level of an Iomedae for instance. What I'm really looking for especially is a good black god that is LG, CG or NG.

Don't confuse the artwork with the divinity. ("The map is not the territory.") A number of deities are specifically described as not being tied to any specific ethnicity, but of course, this isn't possible when you're drawing a single illustration of them.

For example, the iconic Shelyn image you get when you google is a human Caucasian woman, but according to the text "Depictions of Shelyn, regardless of race or ethnicity, show her as a young woman barely out of her youth, with eyes of blue or silver." So she could easily be drawn as a goblin or a gnome -- and often is, in-universe. A black human is no more difficult.

While that's true, in a lot of ways it doesn't matter.

We the players respond to the images presented to us. If Shelyn was shown as multiple different races or ethnicities it would matter. If she's only (or mostly) shown as Caucasian, that's what we'll see.
If most of the deities not tied to a specific ethnicity are usually shown as Caucasian, that's how they're presented to the players, even if there's a note saying they don't always look that way.
If they want to convey that they do look different, that needs to be shown. If that's too expensive, then at least having such deities each presented as a different race/ethnicity adds some diversity.

Having all the pictures white and saying "They also appear as blacks, but we're not going to show that" doesn't cut it.

The map really is the territory when it comes to this kind of representation.


You know, I can go with Nethys being half-bleached and half-blackened compared to his mortal appearance, and Sarenrae is bronze-skinned, but Pharasma I think would look really good with darker skin, and I'd be in favor of her skin color being drawn alternatingly.

Dark Archive

What would stop a mwangi from seeing his gods as mwangi? Medieval europeans didn't complain that the bible didn't contain enough medieval europeans, they just depicted biblical figures as persons of their time and culture.


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Jadeite wrote:
What would stop a mwangi from seeing his gods as mwangi? Medieval europeans didn't complain that the bible didn't contain enough medieval europeans, they just depicted biblical figures as persons of their time and culture.

In world, the mwangi likely would, at least for some of the gods - those not strongly tied to particular races/ethnicities.

That doesn't change the fact that the players see all the Caucasian representations.


thejeff wrote:
Jadeite wrote:
What would stop a mwangi from seeing his gods as mwangi? Medieval europeans didn't complain that the bible didn't contain enough medieval europeans, they just depicted biblical figures as persons of their time and culture.

In world, the mwangi likely would, at least for some of the gods - those not strongly tied to particular races/ethnicities.

That doesn't change the fact that the players see all the Caucasian representations.

Nethys has been portrayed as a half burnt caucasian-looking elf and a very dark skinned, golden-eyed pharoah


In regards to Nethys, he's Osiriani... which is Golarion's copy of Egypt. Having been to Egypt, I can say for certain that there are plenty "not black" Egyptians. Not sure that excuses him from looking like a half messed up Sephiroth, though.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

Nethys' problem, though, is that when he was mortal in pre-history, Garund wasn't littered with ethnic Keleshites (RW Arabic / Persian races), but was ethnic Garundi (RW African). His unburned half is probably from the original art being ordered for a "half scorched, half not" deity. The cover for Inner Sea Gods has his unburned half as Keleshite, though, which after the Kelesh cultural revolution when Osirion was under the Padishah's thumb, the older imagery probably gave way to the "norm" that the Keleshite rulers instituted. That's not to say he shouldn't be half Garundi, half crispy corpse, though.

Would make his holy symbol interesting, though. A mask with two black halves... (He's secretly norgorber).

Also, regardless of his artwork, ISG has

Quote:

Though

he is generally depicted as Garundi, some regional
temples deviate from this by showing him as a member
of a prominent local race or as an Azlanti.

Silver Crusade

I'd say we'll start seeing some dark skinned gods once have a book or AP or something that focuses on the Mawangi Expance. We got a Tian Pantheon that way. Also if you look beyond the main gods most of the deities aren't really human looking. Also lots of them aren't even given a nationality.

The main gods do represent the main Pantheon worshiped in Avistan (Europe) so it makes sense that most of them are more white.

Was reading through chronicle of the righteous, and Jalaijatal is stated to be Mawangi in appearance.

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