It’s been awhile since i’ve been active, apart from Warlock’s Journal i’ve been keeping busy with warhammer40k. I co-hosted an event that went off awesomely!
So now i am re-aquainting myself with my writing on the Shadow Council and i am currently trying to research the topic of True Names. The proxies of the Shadow Council set out to discover the True Name of a great entity and i wanted to not fall into too much of a clichÃ© even though a true name is very much so.
So far I have learned that many different cultures as far back as the egyptians had alot of true name and name superstitions. In many cultures you would have a ‘public’ name and a private name between you and your deity/deities. From what little i have read so far, the jewish religion have a true name for god and only the high priest is allowed to use it and only on very holy and special occasions.
In all the cultures that have these superstitions a ‘true name’ could be abused as some form of control or gateway to your personage. Some believed it made you vulnarable to curses or magical spells from a distance, some that you could be dominated.
Some cultures also believed it very important to name your child to the gods, so that they would know them and thus protect them. Some believed if a child was not named fairies or feys could attempt to replace the child with a changeling.
While there are numerous accounts of the superstitions of names powers, there is very little on the discoveries of true names. Ra was said to have his true name written on the inside of his stomach to prevent it being learned and used against him and Isis had to poison him in secret to force him to tell her his name under the guise of it being the only way to heal him.
But so far i have not found alot of other examples, other than kabbalist using Gemetria to try and learn Gods true name from the Torah. Which in itsel sounds very fascinating.
So far my research has been superficial google searches, but already an idea is taking shape.
The entity in question is a sentient plane of existance which is manifested as a gargantuan Necropolis, clues to the true name of the entity is scattered throughout the Necropolis. I like the idea of the Gemetria, that you can discover it through scrutiny and study, rather than a physical trial of brawn or brain. Maybe they can all be combined.
I must find me a symbolic number, something that means something to the entity… then i contemplate there should be that amount of clues and i think they should be physical sites to travel to and examine and study. However how should this information come to light? Granted, there always seems to be someone who knows a certain secret. But i want to dig out the story behind this, i want the why’s behind it. If someone knows there are clues scattered in the Necropolis i want to know why and how they came by this information, i believe that creates credability and brings depth to a story.
So, some how the secret knowledge of the clues to learning the entity’s true name is out there somewhere.
I’ll make a list to summarize:
I need a numeric value of importance to the entity.
I need an equal amount of clues, that when put together creates either the name or a final pointer to the name.
I need to know how this secret about the clues could be discovered.
I need to figure out if the secret can be learned by a person, item or other.
All of this is going to be background for the Shadow Council story setting and is not necessary for using the story in a campaign. However, i can easily imagine a campaign that takes your players back to this point in time to re-visit what happened or even to play it out. That is what i find most awesome about my Shadow Council story and concept, you can fit it in anywhere, anytime and you can pick and choose what to play. You could use my story setting as mere backdrop for your campaign and set your goal on the big question “revive or destroy the Shadow Council?” or you can pick a moment in the story and play from there or inject your players into that point in time and pull them back to current time. So that is why i want to include background information such as this.
So off I go to figure out the ins and outs of the true name hunt.
Gork ya later!