The Lord Dahkoar

"Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.”

― Edgar Allan Poe, The Raven

"A Philosopher's Take on the Tenet's of Dahkoar"

Dahkoar Way - Darmahk

   Black poles holding lanterns inside of strange black orbs, keep this street
in the shadows, even during daylight hours. Black sand covers the standard dirt
and clay ground. Standing majestically to the south and built from solid black
granite is the Temple of Dahkoar. Large, ten foot wide steps lead into the
temple through the massive black gold inlaid doors. A wooden water trough rests
against the wall.

   The Temple of Dahkoar Entry

   Obvious exits: north and temple.

Female Malor.
Female Human.
Male Malor.
Male Feline.
Male Dwarf.
Male Trolahk.

Twelve Trader chef drinks.
Seventeen Trader chef drinks.
Fifteen Trader chef drinks.
Wood Sign.

Kaisa makes her way up the marble steps leading to the Temple, using her elevated position as a platform to address those gathered. "Good evening everyone.", she greets warmly, coupled with the polite incline of her head. "I would like to thank you for taking the time to attend my talk. If you have not yet helped yourself to a drink, please feel free to do so and enjoy it, even as I speak."


"Allow me to introduce myself.", the speaker continues. "My name is Kaisa Aveilia, the newest Trader of Darmahk and a believer of Dahkoar. Although I am not yet officially devoted, I am taking this opportunity to make my faith known and to perhaps share it with those who may be seeking to learn more."


"My talk is entitled: "A Philosopher's Take on the Tenets of Dahkoar.", Kaisa begins without further delay. "This speech is meant to be thought-provoking and stirring. I challenge you to set aside any assumptions or biases you may have about the Dahkoar faith and simply consider my discourse with an open-mindedness. I speak to you -not- as a cleric but as a theoretician."


Kaisa continues, her gestures and mannerisms reflecting her background as a teacher, as some in the audience have just recently come to learn. "For those who are not familiar, the tenets of Dahkoar are as follows: divinity, devotion, determination and dominance."


Kaisa doesn't skip a beat as she goes on, "Let us start with the first: Divinity. This tenet states that Dahkoar is the one true god and is preeminent, meaning His power and existence is all-surpassing. Before you roll your eyes at the thought, I would like to further elaborate on this." 


Kaisa clarifies, "The Dahkoarim acknowledge that yes, other gods exist and yes, they are indeed powerful. I have personally come to respect them." She says this with a genuine sincerity in her voice as she looks through the crowd. "However, the tenet of divinity dictates that the Lord Dahkoar is supreme. Some may consider it pompous, domineering or even arrogant but...what if it were true? What if it were not a random, empty claim? Then the Dahkoarim's faith in His divinity is well-founded and true."


"Imagine with me... The beginning of the universe.", Kaisa invites, the faintest hint of a smile touching her lips. "Before time began. Before the birth of Nature. Before the existence of Light. What do you imagine? Nothingness? Emptiness? A void? Darkness?" 


Kaisa gathers some materials and begins working with them.

With expertise Kaisa creates a usable torch.


Kaisa lights a torch.


Kaisa gathers some readily available materials and creates a torch, quickly igniting it and holds it before the crowd. "Light must be created. Light must be crafted. A torch. A campfire. A match. It must always be made or willed into existence. And even if the light should exist, it always casts a shadow so that the darkness is never truly gone."


Kaisa extinguishes a torch.


Kaisa extinguishes the torch. "Darkness, on the other hand, simply is." She takes a step down the marble stairway, then another, until she is no longer on the elevated platform but standing amid the crowd with a certain element of intimacy. "Darkness does not need to be kindled. It does not have to be fashioned. It does not have to be called upon. It just...exists."


Kaisa turns to those around her, reasoning with her audience, "Perhaps it is not too far-fetched to think that Darkness existed before all things. Maybe it's not crazy to believe that Darkness is greater. It may not be such a bogus claim after all. There may be a truth here that some have never considered before."


Kaisa states resolutely. "I, for one, believe that Darkness existed before all things. I believe in the Lord Dahkoar's preeminence and divinity." She then poses a rhetorical question, "What do you believe?" She lets the question linger in everyone's mind before making her way back up those steps and turning to get a clear view of the audience once again. 


Kaisa moves on a little bit more quickly now, picking up the pace. "The next tenet: Devotion. This tenet demands the devotion of His faithful even if it means sacrifice. Some people think that the faithful of Dahkoar are too fanatical. They shy away from the thought of devotion because it implies hardship. Loss. Suffering. But this is a concept we are familiar with." 


"We are already devoting our life to one person or another.", Kaisa continues. "The citizens of Darmahk are devoted to the Overseer because we recognize the greatness of his leadership. Some of you, our neighbors to the north, have devoted yourselves to servicing the King. Many of you are devoted to a guild. And if none of those, perhaps you are simply devoted to yourself."


"The bottom line is this: We are all giving up our lives.", Kaisa states as her brows come to a light furrow. "We sacrifice ourselves for the people we love, the leaders we believe in, the craft we are perfecting. We know what it means to sacrifice. So, it is not strange to find that the Dahkoarim are willing to do anything and everything for the Lord Dahkoar. If you ever believed in someone or something so much - you would sacrifice for them too."


Kaisa continues, "Third: Determination. This is likely the most relatable of the tenets. The Lord's faithful see it their duty to seek out and abolish any weakness within themselves, the faith and society itself. Determination is not just some short-lived resolution. It is not simply a moment of motivation. It is an unwavering desire to grow stronger and better."


"Do you see this character in yourself...?", Kaisa  inquires, eying the crowd curiously. "If you do, perhaps the influence of the Lord Dahkoar on you is greater than you originally thought. The Lord's faithful embody the spirit of Determination."


"Lastly: Domination*.", Kaisa says, nearing her conclusion. "The tenet of dominance declares that the Darkness must be dominant in all things and that all which hinders the Lord's will must be displaced. This may come across as the harshest of the tenets but I would like to deflate any negative assumptions one may have about this belief."


Kaisa prompts, "Think about it for a moment. Dominance can be seen in the world around us. Even when it comes to nature, we have a saying: 'the survival of the fittest'. Some people think it cruel and selfish, but it is actually natural. The strongest and most powerful exert their will."


Kaisa get a butcher knife {poisoned} from the large scabbard {butcher knife {poisoned}}.


"Let me ask you this.", Kaisa retrieves her butcher's knife from her scabbard, examining the poisoned blade.  "Have you ever hunted? Slain a poor rabbit in the forest? Trapped for some crabs in the ocean? Took down one of the animals of the grasslands or the savannah? Many of those animals were peaceful. Unsuspecting. Innocent. Yet we've hunted them. Lured them into our traps for our own gain. We've butchered more than what we need for food. Some of us even do it for sport." 


Kaisa puts a butcher knife {poisoned} in large scabbard.


Kaisa asks the crowd as she puts her blade away, "Have we ever cried that it was cruel? Unfair? Unjust? Heartless? I have yet to come across such an individual." She shakes her head. "No, we don't complain about it because it is part of the natural order of power. It is the law of the universe. It is -not- evil. It is only fitting. We are the stronger race, and we have dominion over lesser beings because we are able to, and we choose to."


Kaisa states the implication, "When it comes to the Lord Dahkoar and his will to dominate, it is His divine prerogative. And we, as lesser beings, follow. He is not evil. He is not cruel. He is not unjust nor is He unfair. He is doing as He pleases as is His divine right. We, as believers of Dahkoar, are taught to reflect this."


Kaisa takes a deep breath as she clasps her hands together, finally wrapping up. "I could ramble on and on but I believe this is enough to spark some thoughts. As you consider my words, I ask that you be open-minded. You may not agree with everything I have said but I hope it may help strip away some biases and misconceptions."


Kaisa says, "This talk was not meant to be a debate, considering I have already taken up a good portion of everyone's time, but if you would ever like to talk philosophy with me, please do not hesitate to mail me or approach me at a later time. I would greatly enjoy hearing your personal thoughts. Your rebuttals. Your perspective. I would love to hear from you. 


Kaisa adds, "Over a cup of coffee. My treat."


Kaisa says, "With that, I would like to officially close my talk. I truly thank you for your attention and your time. "


* During the actual presentation of this talk, this was actually considered a fumble. The fourth tenent of Dahkoar is Dominance, not Domination. (Oh well. Same difference.)