Gods in Creation
In the heathen days following
the Cataclysm, knowledge of the true gods and the true creation of Krynn all but
fled the world. The creation stories that did survive are fragmentary and
heavily colored by cultural biases. Even the Disks of Mishakal remain
maddeningly vague about the creation. Tales such as the following still provide
our best knowledge of the origins of Krynn.
Before time and substance,
there was nothing. The High God opened a door from another place and stepped
through into the emptiness. But she sorrowed, for it was a desolate place. And
she lay down in chaos like a woman asleep.
Then Chislev, whom we call
Nature, and Reorx, whom we call Manufacture, happened through the door to see
the High God so distraught. And Chislev said, "Make us a world, Reorx, that the
High God needn't weep." Grieved in kind, the rotund Reorx swung his mighty
hammer to forge chaos into a world. Thus he created a ball of rock. Still the
High God did not rise from grief.
Chislev descended to walk upon
the vast and barren ball of rock. It was more desolate than chaos itself, and
its rough stones sliced her feet. Where her tears fell, rivers poured forth.
Where her feet bled, the salty oceans rose. When Chislev saw the rivers and
oceans, she was glad. She laughed and skipped and danced across the world. Where
she laughed, beautiful meadowlands blanketed the stone. Where she skipped,
forests grew. Where she danced, rocks piled into huge mountains.
But still the world was lonely,
for none lived in it. So Chislev stooped and fashioned from clay every creature
of land, sea, and air. Once all were made, she laughed at their small and still
forms. Hearing her laughter, the figures sprang to life.
The ringing of Reorx's hammer
and the sound of Chislev's laughter awoke the slumbering High God. She, too,
laughed. The sound brought all the other gods through the open door-Paladine and
his six, Gilean and his four, and Takhisis and her six. They all were so struck
by the New World that they began to bicker over who should rule it. Annoyed by
the clamor in the heavens, the High God slammed the door and said, "Silence!"
And they were silent.
In the days before history and
before the world, everything was a jumbled chaos. jumbled and useless it was.
And the High God was flummoxed. He reached into his robe and pulled out the
sticks he had brought from the other place and started whittling. He whittled
one stick-a pleasantly stout stick with a stern expression-but still hadn't
thought what to do with the chaos. He whittled another. Still nothing. He
whittled twenty-one sticks and in the end was all the more flummoxed. So the
High God said, "What should I do with the chaos?"
The stout stick, whom the High
God called Reorx, said, "I'll make a round and sturdy world in my own image." A
lithe stick called Chislev said, "And I will make trees in my own image " A
ready stick called Zeboim said, "I will make oceans for me to live in." A
beautifully carved stick named Paladine said, "I will make dragons in my own
image" And all the other sticks cried out what they would make.
The High God, pleased with all
the ideas, asked the beautiful stick Paladine to create his dragons first.
Paladine did so, clutching the elemental power of chaos in fistfuls and forming
noble dragons in rainbow hues. Though this creation pleased the High God, a
thorny stick called Takhisis was jealous: she wanted to be the first creator and
have the first creation bear her image. So she corrupted the dragons, making
them Evil in her likeness. Disturbed by the folly that had come of Paladine and
Takhisis's squabble, the High God turned to Reorx the Forger for a better
creation. Reorx reared back with his mighty hammer and pounded the chaos as a
blacksmith strikes red-hot iron. Each blow flung sparks into the ether, and each
spark became a star. The other gods watched in awe, certain they could never
forge such wonders. The last mighty blow of Reorx's hammer created Krynn, a
gloriously smooth and stout ball of iron.
The High God applauded, but now
the other gods were anxious to do their creating. They flooded down upon Reorx's
perfect world and proceeded to ruin it with deep gashes, high ridges, puddles
and ponds and lakes and oceans. As though these were not insult enough, the gods
filled the place with grasses, ferns, and trees, and infested it with all manner
of wriggling, flapping, creeping, climbing, and flying beasts.
Reorx's wonderful creation of
simplicity now burgeoned and teemed. Reorx stomped mightily upon the ground,
raising a mountain in his anger. That mountain would later be called Thorbardin.
The High God comforted Reorx,
"This world is for all the gods. They must learn to live and work together. I am
sorry your perfect world is ruined but, see, you are not the only one who
grieves" And there, in a lovely glade, they saw Paladine weeping amidst statues
of his lost dragons. He had fashioned one dragon statue for each of the rainbow
hued dragons he lost. The statues were made of only the finest metals of Krynn:
gold, silver, bronze, brass, and copper.
The High God asked, " Paladine,
have you created nothing more than these statues for my world?" Paladine turned
his sorrowing eyes toward the High God, "Yes, I am sorry. I can create nothing
new. My heart lies with my lost children " Reorx pitied the poor god and said,
"Your creations shall be the greatest of all-five Good dragons for our world"
And so saying, he struck each dragon statue with his hammer. The shuddering ring
of the hammer blow quickened the metal to life, and the five metallic dragons
took to wing above the world.
Before everything else, there
was a machine called chaos. It was infinitely large and infinitely complex. But
it didn't do anything. It just ran and ran. Reorx, great god of the forge saw
this and said "We have a design flaw. This machine doesn't do anything. We need
to make some improvement to the machine-add some accessories so that it will
save labor and make life simpler."
Reorx's first design
modification was to put a giant cog at the center of the machine. With his
mighty hammer, h struck part of the machine to forge the cog. The sparks from
the forge flew up and became stars to light his work. At last the cog was
finished. To make it truly efficient, he had made the cog not only round, but
spherical. All cogs need teeth and grooves, so he made mountains and valleys.
About this time, as always
happens when one starts a big project out of doors, it started to rain.
Irritated, Reorx cut channels into the spherical cog to control water flow. The
channels became rivers. Soon, Reorx realized he needed some storage tanks for
the water, so he hollowed out the basins we now call oceans.
But the waters kept rising.
Irritated, Reorx made sea creatures to drink the water. But water wasn't enough
for these creatures. They began eating the cog. So Reorx made plants for the sea
creatures to eat. The plants crept up onto land and the sea creatures followed.
And so came the flowers and trees, the beasts and birds. Reorx became truly
flustered, thinking he should destroy his cog altogether.
Just about that time, some
other gods wandered over. "What're you workin' on Reorx?" they asked, trying to
sneak a peek at his invention. Reorx, ashamed of his plant-and beastinfested
cog, would not let them see. He said, "Go away. It's not finished." One sly god
named Takhisis looked at the stars that had flown up from the forge and said,
"You aren't using those sparks, are you Reorx? They're just by-products, are
they not? Give them to me" But Paladine said, "Don't give them to her, she'll
only corrupt them. Give them to me instead."
And so an uproar ensued over
what god could have Reorx's sparks. At last, the High God happened over and
said, "If you are going to fight over them-by-products or no-none of you can
have them. I will make them a people to live on Reorx's beautiful world. If you
wish, each of the families of gods-Good, Evil, and Neutrality-can bestow a gift
on these spark creatures. But none can control them."
Paladine, patriarch of the Good
gods, gave the spirits bodies so they could manipulate the world as do the gods.
Takhisis, matriarch of the Evil gods, gave the spirits painhunger, thirst,
disease, and death-hoping that she could enslave them through their desires and
fears. Gilean, patriarch of the Neutral gods, gave the spirits free will so that
they could choose freely between Good and Evil. Once these gifts were bestowed,
the High God set the races of Krynn on the world.
The cog was clearly ruined. It
would still spin, but it could clearly not drive a whole universe the way Reorx
had hoped. He shook his head and sighed, wishing he had left the chaos machine
There was a big nothing called
Void, and in it was a swirling thing called Chaos. Reorx, who made dwarves but
also likes humans, thought Chaos was interesting. He picked it up, borrowed a
hammer Kiri-jolith wasn't using, and pounded Chaos into a round world. "Hmmm…
Maybe it needs some decorations." He took his hammer and made mountains, hills,
and valleys. "Better-but it's all sooty from the hammer. Perhaps if I wash it
with that water Zeboim isn't using . . ." And so the thing came to have rivers
Then he found some seeds that
Chislev had thrown out. "From seeds she doesn't even want, I will grow some
flowers for her" So, he took the seeds and planted them. Instantly, trees,
grass, plants, and flowers sprang up.
"The world's looking better and
better." He found a few of Habbakuk's fish and threw them into his ocean to keep
them from suffocating. He gathered in a stray flock of Sirrion's birds and
placed them on the world for safe keeping. Soon, Reorx's world was thriving.
The gods, seeing their
discarded things put to such good use, grew jealous. They complained to
Paladine, who studied Reorx's world. He said, "You're mad because Reorx made
something good with your throwaways? Well, too bad for you. Anyway, everything's
so mixed up down there, you couldn't get it back if you tried."'
Last modified: Monday, 24-Jan-2005 19:35:20 UTC