World of Wu-Yu
Yaj Yeeb is a revivalist religion emerging from urban Goblinoid culture. Wu-Yu is honored in her special aspect as Giver of Madness and Ghost Rider. By her cathartic gift of “madness”, involving emotional displays, ecstatic trance, and even spirit possession, followers are purged of unhealthy feelings and freed from suffering.
The unusual name “Yaj Yeeb” comes from a string of syllables uttered while in spirit-possessed trance by the religion’s founding mother, the priestess Wei-i. After her life-changing experience, she devoted her life to the new way of Yaj Yeeb. She currently resides in the main temple in Guang Tien and travels spreading the good news. Politically, she strongly supports nonviolent protest of inequality and prejudice. Her early work was instrumental in bringing about the Decree of Emancipation, which abolished the serfdom of Goblinoids.
Yaj Yeeb also teaches followers to look for the coming of the Golgul, a rare species of Goblinoid that has not been born in over a thousand years. When it is, it will herald a new age of peace and prosperity for all. The Golgul is pale as moonlight and covered in moon-shaped birthmarks.
Worship is conducted at night, and involves the repetition of the syllables “yaj yeeb kum pu dang za.” No one knows what they mean, but they are believed to banish impurities and ease the way for spirits to enter the worshiper’s body. The moon goddess Bharata watches over to ensure that no evil spirits enter, so worship is avoided on the dark moon of each month.
Those blessed with possession lose the ability to direct their bodies, dance uncontrollably, speak in tongues, feel no pain, and retain no memory of moments of possession. It is common for the possessed to display their immunity to pain by jabbing themselves with sharp objects, climbing a ladder of blades, leaping over fires, walking on coals, or dowsing themselves with boiling water. Those “ridden” (possessed) by spirits thereafter acquire respect and admiration among followers.
The chance of possession during a given act of worship is 01% at Lay Follower rank. It is equal to the character’s POW at Initiate rank, POW x2 at Acolyte rank, and POW x5 at Priest rank. Possession lasts for 1D10 rounds. Priest-rank followers may end possession at will, others may not.
Unlike most priests and urban folk, Yaj Yeeb followers respect shamans and work closely with them.
Myths and High Days
The annual high day of Yaj Yeeb is the Harvest Moon, which is the first full moon after the local harvest comes in. The date thus varies by region. Local followers gather at night for song, dance, and a chance at spirit possession.
A wide variety of myths and ghost stories are told by followers of Yab Yeeb, but the central one is that of The Ghost Ride. It is a variant of the common Wu-Yu myth of the Descent of Wu-Yu. Wu-Yu, the mother of all, was troubled by the many forms of suffering experienced by her children. She withdrew from her consort Thauma and refused his affections. The fertility of the earth began to suffer as a consequence: crops failed, and no new life was born. Finally, the moon goddess Bharata led her to the abode of the sleeping Maha-Meng, he who dreams the world. There, Wu-Yu laid down and entered into Maha-Meng’s dream. What she experienced was a terrifying march of ghosts riding wildly through the night. Upon waking she was filled with an inexplicable sense of lightness and elation. She returned home, shared her bed with Thauma, and life once again flourished in the world. Her rejuvenation is a mystery that cannot be understood, only experienced.
|Primary Deity||Titles and Epithets||Archetypes||Followers|
|Wu-Yu||Mother of All, Giver of Madness, Ghost Rider||Earth Goddess, Night Goddess, Moon Goddess, Trickster||Goblinoids, the low-class and oppressed|
|Other Revered Deities||Enemy Deities/Religions||High Days||Typical worship acts|
|Thauma as consort of Wu-Yu, and Bharata as Moon Goddess, Maha-Meng as Great Dreamer||-||Harvest Moon||Dance, song, emotional displays, spirit possession|
|Ethos||Virtues||Cult Skills||Holy Symbol|
|Endure difficulty, embrace passion, be true to family, let gods and spirits work through you||Perseverance, passion, vision, filial piety||Sing, Dance, Persistence, Artistic Expression, Disguise, Lore(Arcane), Play Instrument||Silver or silver-colored bangles|