Agartha Version 1
Name: Dismatu (Diss-Mah-Too)
The Dark Taker, The Lady of Fate, The Whispered One
Portfolio: Goddess of death, darkness, night, shadows, the underworld, secrets, language, hidden knowledge, intrigue, fate, winter, the sea, the moon, and water.
Description: Dismatu is described as a beautiful woman of an unspecified race, but only those who die can see her face, otherwise most of her features are shrouded in long grey robes. Dismatu’s favored weapon is a wooden pole that can change its length, it is also used as a pole to steer her boat in the rivers of the underworld. Her messengers are generally carrion birds and bats, but on occasion she communicates more directly through whispers and patterns in water. Her holy symbol is a small grey spiral, or several connected spirals.
Dogma: Dismatu demands that her followers hold no pity for those who suffer and die, for death is the natural end of life. She requires her worshipers to bring down the proud who try to cast off the chains of fate. As the instrument of Dismatu, they must punish hubris where they find it. She also expects all of her worshipers to embrace winter, the sea, and night seeing these things as natural parts of the world and extensions of Dismatu’s will and fate. Her worshipers are to seek out knowledge of the underworld and other hidden information and secrets, but they are not to spread this information outside of their worshipers. For her, knowledge is power, and power is to be coveted in the shadows. Her followers are to never raise the dead, create the undead or reveal all that they know.
Worshipers: Dismatu attracts many worshipers such as those who deal with the dead, embalmers, grave diggers, seers, assassins, surgeons, soldiers, warriors, sailors, conspirators, thieves, the dead, and those who embrace secrets and hidden knowledge. Others will worship her temporarily when a loved when dies, or they hope to survive winter or a long sea voyage.
Clergy: They are secretive and often solitary. They have little love for pleasantries and noise, focusing instead on the harsh realities of survival, even when times are good. Dismatu priests pray just after darkness falls. Those who would become priests of Dismatu must undergo an arduous initiation that climaxes in being buried alive for a time. They seek to fulfill Dismatu’s will by destroying the undead and others who try to defy death. They also provide services such as performing burial rituals and embalmings. They prefer to live near water but will travel to seek out secrets and often they are called to the underworld to do Dismatu’s biding.
Temples: While worship of Dismatu is widely expected her temples are not. Thus temples are rare and the few that do exist are hidden, secretive, and often subterranean. Many misunderstand these temples secretive nature but in reality these temples are merely places of quit worship. They often double as tombs, contain libraries of hidden knowledge, and have many water features. They are dark places with almost no windows and are designed to only be fully lit during the light of the full moon.
Rituals: Most of her rituals deal with the death, she marks the end of each mortal life, and mourners call upon her during funeral rites, in the hope that she will guard the departed from the curse of undeath. Those who work with the dead also utilize many of her rituals. Her rituals are generally quiet, involving the burring of incense, hand gestures, and murmured prayers.
Significant Holy Days:
- Winter’s Peak: The winter solstice is a very holy day for Dismatu, it is when the barrier between underworld and the living world becomes the thinnest. Worshipers celebrate by decorating gravestones and having graveyard banquets. The most devote will even travel to the underworld to learn more of its secrets.
- Solar Eclipses and Full Moons: These two events are also very holy to worshipers of Dismatu.
- The Bell of Secrets: A grey bell said to allow its holder to understand any language and hear noises miles away.