The Blood of Vol is a predominantly human religion that worships no god or deity but instead the divinity that lies within all mortals.
(Warning: The following information is only learned through passing a Religion or History check)
The Roots of the Faith date back thousands of years to the age of giants in Xen'drik and when the elves fled the land to Aerenal they took the faith with them. It wasn't until the Mark of Death started to appear on the flesh of the bloodline of the House of Vol that the religion took the shape we now know.
During the war between elves and dragons, the matriarch of House Vol sought to make peace between the two races by combining the blood of both. The result was her daughter Erandis Vol whose father was a green dragon.
House Vol achieved its objective of peace though at their own bloodline's expense as both dragon and elf saw Erandis Vol as an abomination. The dragons and elves allied with one another under the one goal of killing Erandis Vol and the entire Vol bloodline along with the mark of death.
Eventually every member of the House of Vol was destroyed along with Erandis, the other Elven houses that had aligned themselves with House Vol were spared the same wrath and were instead banished. These banished elves kept their faith and spread the religion to the Human of Khorvaire.
The Blood of Vol is centered on the belief of Divinity Within, which means that the Blood of Vol does not revere any deity but the blood that courses though their own veins. Only by embracing the potential power of their blood may they avoid Dolurrh's gray wasteland and live in an afterlife crafted by the individuals own abilities, a place of eternal happiness.
(Warning: The following information is only learned through passing a Religion check.)
Look not to the skies, nor the depths below, nor even the distant past or future. Seek the divine within, for the blood is the life, and in its call can be heard the promise of eternal life. One has but to listen.
The above is a mantra that is recited at the beginning of many rites and prayers. The mantra is a summary of the religion and a directive to the seekers. It tells them that divinity only exists within the blood of living things, that power comes from within which can manifest as physical strength, the ability to cast magic and intelligence. It also tells Seekers to pray to the divinity within and not to false gods and their prophets.
Followers of the Blood of Vol Edit
Followers of the Blood of Vol call themselves Seekers and come from all walks of life though Seekers are predominantly human. Seekers do not believe in divine beings rather they seek the divinity within themselves believing in the life and godliness that flows through blood itself. The Blood of Vol tends to appeal to those who wish to improve themselves and those who are driven due to the faiths focus on the individual's inner-self. Some followers join the religion because they believe that the concept of a god is unfathomable. Unfortunately the faith is incredibly appealing to death fetishists, necromancers and seekers of immortality.
Hierarchy EditThe Hierarchy of the Blood of Vol is much like the Church of the Silver Flame but the members of the church knows who leads them while the followers of the Blood of Vol do not know their leader at all.
The Crimson Covenant is a group of thirteen individuals mostly comprised of intelligent undead and long-lived mortals each of which has a direct line of communication with Vol herself. The Covenant has kept link between Vol and the day-to-day operations of the faith for many years. Unlike most of the faith, the members of the Covenant know each other and they are protected by Vol's powerful magic.
Abectors are Seekers chosen by The Crimson Covenant to be the head of operations over a temple and sizable community of the Blood of Vol. Some of the numbers of the Crimson Covenant are themselves Abectors, though most are simply Seekers who have proven themselves worthy.
The lowest ring of the hierarchy of the Blood of Vol is the clergy. These are priests and other temple officials that follow the directions of the Abectors and most of these know nothing of the influence of Vol or her true machinations.
The Order of the Emerald Claw is the paramilitary arm of the Blood of Vol and maintains a position equal to that of the Abectors. Their connection to the Blood of Vol is only known by highest ranking members of the Order due to their public profile in Karrnath.
The Blood of Vol and Other Faiths Edit
Much like the Silver Flame, the Blood of Vol believe that all other religions are simply distorted aspects of their own religion, seeing other faiths as misguided fools, who hopefully will come to see the error of their ways and convert.
The Silver Flame: The Blood of Vol sees the Silver Flame as fanatical zealots, from whom one can only learn how destructive faith can become when dictated by another.
The Sovereign Host: A faith one could almost begin to understand, if it was not for the reliance on "gods" that have clearly forsaken their worshipers.
The Dark Six: Suffering from the same faults as the Sovereign Host, though at least the worshipers of the Dark Six admit to it. If nothing else, they make useful allies against the Church of the Silver Flame.
Druidic Sects: We both venerate nature, but the druids look to the natural world beyond, while we look to the natural force within ourselves.
As of Fourth Edition's Eberron Player's GuideEdit
While the followers of The Blood of Vol are often distrusted by members of other faiths because of rumors that they worship the dead, the members are not evil. This is widely misunderstood due to the fact that the teachings are dark and driven. While no longer presumed evil, the members of The Blood of Vol are unaligned and follow these exhortations:
- Believe in yourself: "As the blood is the power, and the blood flows through me, the power is mine."
- Work to improve yourself and your capabilities. A complete understanding of divinity within opens the door to immortality.
- Meet with others of The Blood of Vol to share in the power of each other's blood.
Those of The Blood of Vol are entranced by the meaning of blood, both literal and figurative, as well as heredity. To them, blood is the source of power and the divine, and only through understanding that power is within and not without or through an illusionary otherworldly power can one focus on day-to-day activities and self-improve and ultimately obtain immortality. For if one is strong enough, he may be able to master the source of life and abilities that come from within him and his blood.
- Janilya The Fearless: Faiths of Eberron p.87
- Typical Blood of Vol Priest: Eberron Campaign Guide p.228
- Eberron Campaign Setting, p. 70. Keith Baker, Bill Slavicsek, and James Wyatt (2004). Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-3274-0.
- Faiths of Eberron, p. 75-84. Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, Ari Marmell, and C.A. Suleiman (2006). Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-3934-6.
- Eberron Campaign Guide. James Wyatt and Keith Baker (2009). Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-5099-4.
- Ebberon Player's Guide, David Noonan, Ari Marmell and Robert J. Schwalb. June 2009. Wizards of the Coast