Nordic Sun Cross
|Institution:||Church of Vale|
|Principal area of worship:||Vale|
Manitism (Valois: Manitisme) is a traditional polytheistic religion and way of life, revolving around the Vale Mythology, and embracing Valois values and virtues. Manitism has been often described as a religion that adapts to scientific discoveries, while holding deep roots of syncretism and holding several mythological concepts from Thracian, Roman and Norse mythologies. As such, Manitism is considered as one of the most scientifically friendly religion on Kobol and in the galaxy.
Philosophy and teachings
Manitou is the spiritual and fundamental life force understood by the Montagnais and gives its name to the Manitism religion. It is omnipresent and manifests everywhere: organisms, the environment, events, etc. Manitou is the pure primary energy that composes the universe and created it.
In the most mainstream form of the Manitism faith and philosophy, all lifeforms are considered part of one single living planetary being called Gaïa, who is the Mother Goddess. In this view, the atmosphere, the seas and the Kobol crust would be results of interventions carried out by Gaïa through the coevolving diversity of living organisms. However, Kobol as a unit does not match the generally accepted biological criteria for life itself: for example, there is no evidence to suggest that "Gaïa" has reproduced, even if in mythology, she has. Gaïa is the most common named used to describe Kobol in Vale, but Kobol is also understood to describe the deity herself and the concept of humanity's home planet. Midgard (Miðgarðr) and Jord (Jörð) are also used in certain regions of Vale that do not speak Valois natively.
Related to Gaïa, the Church of Vale suggest that organisms co-evolve with their environment: that is, they "influence their abiotic environment, and that environment in turn influences the biota by evolution process". Vale scientists gave evidence of this, showing the evolution from Kobol of the early thermo-acido-philic and methanogenic bacteria towards the oxygen-enriched atmosphere today that supports more complex life.
The modern scientifically accepted form of the Manitism theology has been called "influential Gaïa". It states the biota influence certain aspects of the abiotic world, e.g. temperature and atmosphere. They state the evolution of life and its environment may affect each other. An example is how the activity of photosynthetic bacteria during Precambrian times have completely modified the Kobol atmosphere to turn it aerobic, and as such supporting evolution of life (in particular eukaryotic life).
Manitism theological scientists usually view the factors that stabilise the characteristics of a period as an undirected emergent property or entelechy of the system; as each individual species pursues its own self-interest, for example, their combined actions may have counterbalancing effects on environmental change. Most scientists sometimes reference examples of events that resulted in dramatic change rather than stable equilibrium, such as the conversion of the Kobol's atmosphere from a reducing environment to an oxygen-rich one, to oppose these views.
Álfheimr (Valois: Álfheim) is an ancient name for an area corresponding to modern-day Switzerland. The name comes from Old Norse, and has been kept to designate the Elf people's home. TBC
The Church of Vale venerates Sól almost as much as they venerage Gaïa. Sól is the solar deity of the Church of Vale, the sun itself. While Gaïa is the Mother, who gave birth to life and humanity, Sól is the Father, who gave to Gaïa what was necessary to create life. Sól has evolved from the Norse mythology from a goddess to a god in Manitism.
There is some debate over the origin of the date December 21 for the cult of Sól. Most theologists and scholars, even in the Church of Vale, agree that the Romans held a festival on December 21 of Dies Natalis Invicti, "the birthday of the unconquered one." Most scholars assume Sól was meant by the unconquered one. December 25 was commonly indicated as the date of the winter solstice at thetime, with the first detectable lengthening of daylight hours. There were also festivals on other days in December, including the 11th, as well as August. In modern Manitist religion, Solfest is celebrated, which has similar roots than Christmas.
According to Manitists, life forms in a cycle. Manitists claim that each living being has a soul, made out of pure energy, the Manitou. For instance, the Church of Vale has explained their beliefs: "Birth is not a beginning; death is not an end. There is existence without limitation; there is continuity without a starting-point. Existence without limitation is Space. Continuity without a starting point is Time. There is birth, there is death, there is issuing forth, there is entering in."
Manitism says that there is no border between infinite small and the infinite big, in the sense that it is only our perspective that alters our vision of those concepts. The Universe as we imagine it was born out of a giant explosion of pure primary energy, that scientists now call the Big Bang, expands from that explosion, and will at one point stop expanding to return to its initial energy form by doing the same path backwards. Thus, Manitism claims that existence or life is cyclic, in a way that there is an eternal return to the initial explosion, which is the perpetual rebirth of the universe. Manitism has also recently declared that each atom is its own universe, where humanity cannot access.
Supporting a form of reincarnation, Manitism advocates an after-life known as Retour ("return" in Valois). It dictates that once dead, our bodies return to Gaïa or the Universe. Our bodies decompose themselves and are "given back" to the planet or the Universe. In Manitism, incineration is well-seen and means an acceleration to the "return". Our soul, this primary energy form that make our brains able to function, leaves the body to fly where need be.
Relations with other religions
To its worshipers, Manitism is the only valid religion of Kobol. All other religions are mistaken, where they have the wrong concept of Gaïa and Sól. Other religions' conception of God is the worship of Gaïa and Sól through a mythological concept. But as these worshipers are falsely believing in their mythological concept, without respecting the deities of Gaïa and Sól, they are considered as heretics and can even be labelled as parasites if their actions are deemed virulent.
Manitism is a major religion in Vale. Manitism was followed by around 82% of the country's population of 85 million (1713 estimate) (70 million adherents).