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Dazh

Dazh, God of Fire and Sun

Dazh is the God of Fire and Sun and whose worship is primarily based within the cold, frigid lands of Kislev. It was Dazh who took the secret of flame from the sun and gave it to the ancient warrior chiefs of the tribesmen. Without Dazh’s fire, the long winters of the north would be fatal, and tributes and prayers are regularly offered up to him. In more civilised lands, he rules over the hearths of homes, and is also the patron of guests and the needy. Thus, hospitality to those who call engenders safety for a household, while a poor host or hostess may find that their fire will not start, or that their roof springs an unexpected leak.[1]

Dazh is portrayed as a handsome youth, with long flowing hair and wreathed in fire. He is beautiful to behold and none can look at him directly without being blinded by his divine appearance. He is said to live in a golden palace in the east where he rests every night after travelling the world during the day. In his palace, he is accompanied by warrior-consorts called the Arari, who can often be seen dancing and fighting for his amusement in the northern skies.[1]

OverviewEdit

When the world was first made, it was all in darkness and ice. Dazh saw this and took pity on man. He took his great horse and bore his fire across the sky, giving light to the world. Afterwards, Dazh returned to his golden sky-palace to rest, for the ride was long and tiring. However, he saw the people below were cold and afraid without his fire, yet he could not ride out again until his horse was rested. So Dazh gave the gift of fire to mankind, so they might have some of his light at all times. Dazh is depicted as a handsome young man with golden hair and shining eyes, his body wreathed in fire. Dazh is so dazzling it is impossible to look upon him without being blinded.[1a]

Thus, if Dazh needs to communicate, he sends his firebirds or the Arari as messengers. The Arari are great fire spirits that dwell in Dazh’s golden palace. When they are not serving him, they often dance, producing a colourful display in the northern sky. Dazh is the kindest of all the Kislev Gods and the one most concerned with man’s welfare. In return, he places a great emphasis on proper behaviour. The followers of Dazh are the most dedicated of all the Kislevite priests, and their religion is the most formalised.[1a]

Dazh is a kindly God only by Kislevite standards. He is very much a prince — sometimes generous but above the people, and he is harsh to those who fail to live by his laws. He can be capricious: ruling over the sky is his chief concern, and he can only attend to the affairs of men when he has time. Sometimes, fires are lost to snows or the kindling runs out. Likewise, he travels to the other side of the world every year to pursue his winged love, leaving humans to survive as best they can. Dazh gets on well with the other Gods. Ursun and his children sleep when Dazh is away and awaken to celebrate his return. Tor’s axe is sharpened with the help of Dazh’s fire.[1a]

Dazh is so congenial that some who follow Ursun and Tor consider him to be weak. Of course, they don’t say such things when the night is coming down, and the flint doesn’t want to spark. The only exception to Dazh’s friendliness is in regards to Ulric. As a God of winter, many of Dazh’s faithful see Ulric as an enemy or a rival. Others teach Dazh has no concern for Ulric, for he is a God of earthly matters, and Dazh is a God of the sky.[1a]

Symbology Edit

The symbol of a sun, or a flame, are most commonly used as talismans by followers of Dazh. Gold is a sacred metal to the cult, and higher ranking priests will wear increasingly more gold decoration and jewellery.[1a]

Worship Edit

Every stanitsa has a priest of Ursun, but every house displays a symbol of Dazh. This reverence is upheld both in the oblast and in the cities. Only the most objectionable of foreigners would live in a house without a mark of Dazh above the hearth. Of course, the observance of all his rituals and strictures varies. The nature of Dazh changes, too. In the north, he is seen as a great saviour whose worship can be a matter of life and death. In the south, he is more a figure of hospitality than fire. Every city, town, and stanitsa bears a shrine to Dazh. His holy days are dutifully celebrated throughout the nation, and his high priests have considerable political power due to the ubiquity of their faith.[1a]

Holy Days Edit

"The heart is as a new-strung bow
It knows not its strength ‘til tested
Yet though it wound its target deep
‘Tis the bowman’s flesh that festers

A woman is as a new-cut axe
She needs no strength for rending
Yet though she bests at every clash
She yields at battle’s ending.

A fray is as a blazing hearth
Where life and death are found
Our enemies driven back in fear
Our hearts with brothers bound

Death is like the winter chill
No door can keep it from us
And summer yet may bloom again
Though ice be all upon us.
"
—Oblast Fireside Song

Every day is a holy day for Dazh. He must be welcomed as his flames leap from the hearth to make the morning meal and wished well as the coals are extinguished when the household or temple goes to sleep. The major holy days are the first and last day of the winter snows, when Dazh is bid farewell and thence welcomed back from his ride to the far side of the world, as well as the summer solstice. The summer solstice is the most important and is marked throughout Kislev. On the solstice, Dazh’s power is at its height, and he spends the most time shining his fire down upon the world.[1b][1c]

To celebrate, a great pyre is lit and animal sacrifices burned upon it, typically whole ox, horse, or elk carcasses. In the capital, a dozen head of cattle are slaughtered for the pyre. The faithful also place in the fire pieces of parchment bearing special prayers to Dazh to intercede on their behalf. As the king of the sky, he has connections to all the Gods and so is petitioned for such things as good harvests, good health, and even love and riches. In the farthest northern reaches, this ritual still exists in its original form, with a human sacrifice instead of an animal. Typically, the victim is an unmarried girl, for she cannot grow to be a warrior and does not yet care for children. While a sad event, it is not seen as evil in any way — far worse would be to cause Dazh to hide his face and the whole stanitsa freeze to death.[1c]

Friends and enemies Edit

The cult of Dazh is on genial terms with other main religions of the Old World, although there is some distrust between them and worshippers of Ulric (as god of winter).[1]

Strictures Edit

  • Always offer hospitality, even to strangers and enemies.[1a]
  • Never let a fire go out during the night.[1a]
  • Never set a fire on a dirty hearth.[1a]
  • Offer prayers to Dazh on the first morning that the winter snows cover the ground.[1a]

List of Known Miracles Edit

Note: the following spells have been limited to fluff material only, and the translation thereof.

Dazhinyi Petty Spells Edit

Some factions in the Cult of Dazh teach the following spells.[1d]

  • Blessing of Dazh: The target you touch becomes blessed with Dazh’s favour, reducing damage from fire.[1d]
  • Blessing of Fire: Your prayers summon a welcoming campfire that appears anywhere within range. It does not consume any fuel, does not ignite flammable material, but does emit heat that warms living flesh (and living flesh only). The spell ends if any living creature draws close enough to be damaged by the heat.[1d]

Divine Lore of Dazh Edit

Dazh is the God of fire, the sun, and hospitality. He has been worshipped in the lands of Kislev for uncounted centuries and is believed to have taught early Ungol tribesmen the secrets of fire. Priests of Dazh are warm-hearted individuals who take deep pride in their hearths and homes, and many bedeck themselves in sacred gold. Those who call upon Dazh often prefer heat to cold and may feel uncomfortable when the sun sets.[1e]

  • Brilliance: Your prayers summon a blinding wave of holy fire.[1e]
  • Dazh Szheg!: You call upon Dazh to burn his enemies, and a beam of holy light engulfs your opponents.[1f]
  • Dance of the Alari: You ask Dazh to illuminate the night, and he answers with his warrior-consorts— the Alari. The northern sky lights up with eerie fires as the Alari dance. This illumination is enough light to see by.[1f]
  • Rouse the Coals: You utter a prayer celebrating Dazh awakening from his bed of coals in the east. Your target, if flammable, immediately bursts into flames.[1f]
  • Sacred Guest: You invoke Dazh to bless your time as a guest in another’s home. If your host abuses his position or is a poor host, Dazh curses him. The curse could include: fires failing to light, fires giving no heat, or fuel burning at quadruple rate. The curse lasts until the host apologises to you or prays for forgiveness at a Temple of Dazh.[1f]
  • Wreathe of Flame: Your chants wreath your body in holy flame. Whilst wreath of flame is in effect, you are immune to all damage from fire-based attacks.[1f]

Source Edit

  • 1 Warhammer RPG: Realm of the Ice Queen (2nd Edition)
    • 1a pg. 38
    • 1b pg. 39
    • 1c pg. 40
    • 1d pg. 113
    • 1e pg. 121
    • 1f pg. 122
  • 2 Warhammer Armies: Kislev (6th Edition)
    • 2a pg. 6-7

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