Lorata has four deities: Kearr, god of light and healing, keeper of saints; Métius, god of darkness and death, lord of demons; Jenh, goddess of the twelve elements; and Aamh, celestial goddess of music and mother of angels.
Each grants magic to their followers, some as a gift, other in exchange for their piety and worship. There are different traditions and ceremonies for life events, some cheerful and celebratory, others solemn and tightly-regulated. Birth, of course, is important no matter what one’s faith.
The most devout followers of Métius practice an esoteric ritual during childbirth. As the child is close to being born, the lights in the room are dimmed, the curtains drawn. There are priests of Métius present at birth, praying and chanting during the labor, and the midwife is trained in the correct prayers and rites. Just as the child is about to emerge, the room is completely blackened, and the key prayer begins.
“Darkness was the original state of the world. From it we shall emerge, and to it we shall return.
Our Lord of Shadows guides us, and in Him we place our trust.
Bloodied we are born, and through bloodshed we are destined to die.
Blood and shadows we cannot deny; through them we live, and in turn we offer them to our Master.
Embrace the darkness, for it will not forsake you even when all the light has burned away.
Fear not the crimson flow, but give of yourself in thanks to the heartbeat you have been given.
There is pain on the path to glory, and victory comes through strife and sacrifice.
Dark is the womb, but warm.
We are delivered from deepest darkness through blood and pain, and it is only when we add our voice to the cacophony of the living world that we are able to open our eyes to the light.”
Unless there are complications with the birth, the baby in born in a completely dark room. The midwife is trained to carefully swaddle the newborn and lay it in its mothers arms, and then the next prayers are recited.
“Child of blood and shadows, your lord and master in this life is Métius. He is the one for whom you shall know pain, for whom you shall bleed, and whose glory you shall seek.
The light that illuminates this world may chase away some shadows, but it also creates others. You shall never be without darkness, without the cycles of day and night.
Walk this earth and conquer your fears.
Learn all that you are taught; know truth but also lies, that you shall not be rent asunder by falsehoods.
As your mother has overcome agony in order to birth you, so too must you conquer adversity.
Honor her, but also Métius, for when your heart has beat for the last time, He will be there, your Guardian of Death.”
And then a single large candle may be lit, so that the mother can greet her baby, and the next part of the ceremony can be conducted.
Check back now and then for more ritual of the gods and goddesses of Lorata. Happy reading!