Anfylk Religion[edit | edit source]
The fylkin don't just believe in their god, they know her. Their creation is not just a myth, it's a well documented historical fact. Anfylk are, by far, the most religious of the major races.
The god of the anfylk is Anna, goddess of lazy afternoons and other simple pleasures. Her focus is the enjoyment of the simple and uncomplicated things in life. Things like an afternoon nap in the hammock, a good meal among friends or a favourite book in front of the fireplace are all examples of things considered to be acts of worship. Anything that effortlessly brings you joy and peace while requiring little to no preparation or funding may qualify as worship in the eyes of Anna (yes, this may include sex).
This way of worshipping their god is very well suited to the anfylk mentality and their approach to life (almost like it was planned that way). All fylkin are generally open to practicing all kinds of worship, but the different major breeds tend to favor different kinds. Winter fylkin enjoy sitting in front of the fireplace or around a campfire telling stories. The summer anfylkin takes an afternoon nap in the grass under a tree on a hot summers day and the ane of autumn has a pint of beer, alone or with friends.
The spring fylk are slightly different in that they are a little more active in their worship. Their prefered method of praising their god is by dancing or singing. If you have a mate you dance with them and if you are single, or alone, you sing for those who dance - or just sing. With the rice of modern day night clubs and dance music the act of dancing alone has gained popularity among the spring fylk. This is a matter of some controversy as more traditional fylkin hold that dancing all night to the pumping electronic beat requires too much effort, making it unsuitable as worship or even heretical.
Work[edit | edit source]
The above description might give the impression that fylkin are lazy slackers who do their best to avoid any kind of work or effort. This isn't actually the case. Anfylk doctrine holds that in order to truly appreciate a moment of peace and relaxation it needs to be preceded by a periof of strife and effort. Essentially, the best relaxation is the one that's been earned through hard work.
Smoking the pipe[edit | edit source]
The most holy of all forms of worship, among all different breeds of anylk, is the smoking of the pipe. Comfortably relaxed while puffing your pipe is considered the ultimate form of praise and devotion among anfylk.
While all anfylk agree on the act of pipe smoking the opinions about what to smoke differ wildly. Summer anfylk and spring fylk prefer smoking weeds and herbs. Autumn ane smoke dried fruits or mushrooms and the winter fylkin smoke bark and pine cones. Whether their pipe is filled with intoxicating or psychedelic substances or not is matter of taste that differs from fylkin to fylkin. Generally the ingredients mentioned above are mixed with some sort of tobacco, but occassionally they are smoked as is.
Drugs[edit | edit source]
Due to the sometimes intoxacting substances the anfylk smoke this form of worship is viewed with mixed feelings by the other races. Especially the humans are putting restrictions on anfylk smoking within their lands.
Anfylk are mostly allowed to smoke what they want as long as doing so does not disturb or endanger anyone around them. They are however not allowed to trade their smokestuffs to non-fylkin and doing so may be punished severely. Needless to say, black-market trade in anfylk smokestuff is common, profitable and dangerous. It is also something of political nightmare in countries with mixed anfylk and human population.
Coming-of-Age ritual[edit | edit source]
Traditionally a young fylkin is given their first real pipe at a comming-of-age ceremony on their 17th birthday. This is usually a small private event involving only the family and perhaps some close relatives if they live nearby. The ritual is simple and short. If the young one is a boy it is performed by the father and if it's a girl the ritual is performed by the mother.
The parent fills the pipe with the finest smoke-stuff they can afford and light the pipe. They suck on it once and pass it to their offspring. The child sucks on the pipe once and when they exhale the child vanishes with the smoke and the adult remains.
While this ritual has great symbolic value it is also vital to the survival of the anfylk race. It is not until the ritual is completed that a male can father children or a woman bear them. This has a significant effect on families where a parent dies before their child comes of age. A fylkin child can still reach maturity through adopting a new parent but they will be marked by the social stigma of having reached maturity through someone other than their mother or father by blood.
Rather than adopting a new parent, many orphaned fylkin chose to join one of the many religious orders to fully devote their lives to worshipping their god. This is slightly less common in the modern world with the anonymity of large cities. However, many orphaned fylkin still prefer joining a religious order to hiding their shameful secrets for the rest of their lives.
Religious Orders[edit | edit source]
There are few priests and churches among the anfylk. There are however many religous orders with monks and temples. These orders are often specialized in their worship and while they don't limit themselves to it they do tend to favor their specialization.
The monks generally don't spend all of their time in worship. The rule about having to work to truly appreciate rest still applies to them. The religious orders make a point of involving their members in some sort of charity work or other. Most religious orders also help out with staffing of shops etc during weekends when other fylkin are off duty. This is seen as a sacrifice the monks make for their people. They keep things running so that regular folk can devote time to their families and their friends and, of course, to worshippin their god. Then again, the monks have plenty of time during the working week to devote to their god.
Anfylk temples are always open and always welcome anfylk visitors. Not all temples are accepting non-anfylk visitors though. The anfylk do not actively exclude anyone but hold that certain aspects of their faith and their worship, such as the pipe, can not be fully comprehended by non-fylk.
The temples mostly function as a home for the monks and as a centre for worship of the kind the order is devoted to. Temples also function as a refugee for those suffering stress or worry. It's a place for the suffering to get help, to ease their minds and to get help to relax. It is for this reason that anfylk temples can be found even in regions with little to no anfylk population.
Examples of anfylk religious orders[edit | edit source]
This section will contain a short list of some of the more well known and popular of the anfylk's religious orders.
Order of the Quiet Flow[edit | edit source]
This religious order is big among the summer anfylk and autumn ane. Its favoured way of worship is angling in slowly running waters, preferably from rafts or boats drifting with the stream. The order's temples are primarily located on water, either as big rafts or as houses built on poles above the water.
The Holy Order of the Grass and the Clouds[edit | edit source]
This order's chosen form of worship is to lie in the green grass and look at the clouds. It is well liked and respected among all breeds of anfylk, but does not have many members among the winter fylkin. The order maintains only a handfull of temples, all of which are in areas where the afternoons are pleasantly warm all year round. All over the rest of the world (as long as there is grass to lie down in) the order maintains plenty of shrines in beautiful and comfortable locations.