Nibiru Update #17 - Pilgrims of the Core
Wow! That was a crazy climb from the weekend! Just like that, we are halfway through to the next Stretch Goal. For those who have just joined us, you should check out The Pilgrimage (which is a competition that nets you free adventures in exchange for helping us spread the word about the project). You can find more info in this update
Today I wanted to delve deeper into the cults of Nibiru, and (speaking of the Pilgrimage) to give an overview of the largest religious institution in the Skyless World: that of the Pilgrims of the Core.
The Pilgrims believe the station to be a living thing: Its Core, the heart of the world, an immortal entity worthy of worship. Their beginnings are based on the cults of dawn, with a shared belief in the idea that humanity was separated from the divine sometime in the distant past. This fall, however, is reversible. The Pilgrims believe that self reflection, and the acceptance of Nibiru's divinity, can prepare oneself for the last journey—the Pilgrimage, which sees hundreds of faithful leaving their homes behind to travel towards the Core.
What happens there? Nobody knows. No Pilgrims have returned from a Pilgrimage, safe for one of the first thirteen original Pilgrims (whom is said was charged with spreading the word, thus being the founding mother of the religion).
The Pilgrims believe that upon reaching the center of the Skyless World, their faith will be tested, and those who are worthy will become one with the station. Their bodies, lifted and transformed into stuff divine—steel, cable, power and light.
Within the Pilgrims there's several factions, representing different philosophies. There's the Mentis tradition, which reveres the work of the thirteenth Pilgrim, stating that the path to divinity is reserved to those who spend their lives spreading the word.
There's the Corpus tradition, which seeks to replace their bodies with metal parts to gradually make themselves in the image of the station. There's also more obscure traditions, centered around the other original Pilgrims, and some other traditions that have even forbidden, such as that of the Lightbringers. But that's something we'll talk more about in the book (and in the Chronicles of the Pilgrimage adventures!).
The Pilgrims tend to utilize redesigned Hauler AIs (walking cargo holds that are used in Penumbra) as wandering chapels, moving from one settlement to the other to preach their teachings.