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Tuesday, 2 June 2020

Urban Fantasy: The Unnamed and Unknown Gods

Consider this post a bit of an expansion on my previous thoughts on H.P. Lovecraft and his mythos and how it related to my Urban Fantasy setting. However, the long story short is this: Lovecraft's work is amazing and full of great ideas for me to rip off get inspired by but directly using his Mythos undermines many of its key points. In this particular case, its the cliché of evil cults worshiping some weird forgotten God. This draw inspiration from Lovecraft as much as it does from more recent subject matters, such as the bizarre cases of Pepe the Frog becoming equated with an ancient Egyptian God of Primordial Darkness, of all damn things.

Unnamed and Forgotten, Yet Alive

Art by Jon Torres
One could argue humanity fundamentally craves a higher power. After all, in this day and age so many ideas about society and politics are basically elevated to religion, which is about all I will say on the matter before people give me crap. However, this concept is important to understand the rest: the very human desire for a higher purpose, a higher power and possibly even using said higher calling for the purpose of gaining power. These are very human concepts which many individuals crave for a variety of reasons. Our thoughts, ideas and myths shape the world or are shaped by it, as it is a chicken and egg scenario. The point being, this craving and need is a very real, tangible psychic force when it come to the supernatural. This is the first part of the equation.

The second part is a forgotten god. There are countless deities, monsters and demons scattered across all of humanity's history all across the multiverse and different timelines. After all, who remembers whatever proto-deities where worshiped at the tail end of the stone age? Who remember the Gods and Heroes of forgotten tribes destroyed in ancient wars or plagues centuries before the history-defining civilization of an area came to be? Who really remembers or even knows of the pre-Pharaonic gods of Egypt? These Gods are gone, with only small traces of their existence left: a random symbol, an odd reference in a retold myth, mention in historical documents, an archaeological site of some long lost temple. The Unnamed and Unknown Gods are a psychic and spiritual phenomena which occurs when the human mind connect and latches on to some symbol or idea of something mostly lost to the sands of time. Wild theories, occult connections and improper reconstructions of the myths fuel this phenomena. Should it reach critical mass, it will create a Formed Spirit. This entity is an amalgamation of the identity of the past God(s), a twisted chimera multi-headed abomination made of scattered ideas and concepts slowly fusing together to birth a new God.

Sutekh the Destroyer, from the classic Doctor Who
serials 'The Pyramids of Mars'.
But this is not the God of the ancient civilization, even if it retain the trappings. It is a new entity, one fueled by demented human desires. Reality and causality can warp around it. This entity, this malformed God is now retroactively existing, absorbing and reshaping memories and artifacts across time and space. Most importantly, however, the entity now craves worship as it is these misplaced human desires which birth it and fuels it. While the entity itself may be quite alien in mindset or appearance, it draws it energy from the very human desires and needs. Some are drawn from the distant descendants of the people who inhabited the original God's land, their history slightly twisted retroactively to encourage decadent and degenerate cults which seem more at home in lurid pulps of a bygone age and mentality. In truth these people are victims of the time-displacing psychic lure of this newborn God. Other fragments of the proto cult may form around academia, as mentally unstable scholars begin to obsess over symbols and their strange pet theories about the tentacle-faced God of some forgotten Polynesian culture. In more modern times, the social malcontent or those seeking to be deliberately transgressive might 'ironically' begin to worship the entity through some memetic means.

However, all have in common that they are now caught in the retroactive web of the God: for all intents and purposes, the God now exist and has always existed, a monstrous being lurking inside myths and legends, the lurid and demented journals of globe trotting explorers gone mad and the jest of those joking around to mock society.

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