Of Templars and Religion

Darkcrescent

Knight
Chicago Staff
Marshal
I am also a fan of Spellblade.

..I've been playing 1.5 yrs now and just realized from this thread that "classes" are OOG terms. Maybe I was out sick that day.
 

Dom

Scout
Gettysburg Staff
I like Toddo's idea and say we call the class "sandwich"
 

evi1r0n

Baron
Darkcrescent said:
I am also a fan of Spellblade.

..I've been playing 1.5 yrs now and just realized from this thread that "classes" are OOG terms. Maybe I was out sick that day.
Well considering some of them are common terms a lot of people use them IG and OOG. I have not used templar or adept IG since my first couple events but I still use rogue, artisan, and fighter to describe someone's skill set. I have never called a caster scholar, now that I think about it. Usually mage or caster.
 

jquest716

Newbie
Hey if we are throwing around names to change Templar too I have some,
Warden
Archon
Arbiter
Cavalier
Judge
Exorcist
Tovenaar
Hexblade
 

Gandian Ravenscroft

Knight
Chicago Staff
Marshal
jquest716 said:
If folks think "Templar" ain't okay, I have a feeling this one won't work out too well...
 

Mobeus

Artisan
One of the Major issues that come up with in these types of discussion is this, everything associated with Myth or Fantasy comes directly from religious histories.... Elves, Dwarves, lets talk to the Teutonic People or the Classic Norse Believers... Or the Fae... like the Celts... Or how about Demons, which is in many faith based systems. If we want to ban "crosses" in game as a symbol due to it's Christian overtones, we need to do the same with a hell of a lot of symbols, like Crescent Moons, Stars... etc.

This debate came up regarding a person who had a cross on his character, so what... His character has nothing to do with religion, it is entirely just an easily identifiable symbol.

I frankly don't really mind it being Templar, but if you want to call it something else like Spellsword, or Cookie Monster, power to you if it requires that much mitigation... As long as we know in game there are no religious beings, there are no faiths, and no pushing of your own personal beliefs in game, we can carry on like adults without too many issues. So I feel that his costume violates nothing, and any ill will held over some piece of cloth and a LARP shield with the Cross pre carved into it is misguided.
 

Danny

Newbie
Hi everyone im playing the Templar in question and apologise if the costume has offended anyone, when I was first pitched on the idea of playing this boffer larp I ran out and got the book to make my character and like a lot of other nerds didn’t read the whole thing.

I had no idea the costume might not be allowed in game but was told by another player that there was no religion and have not added any aspect of one in my role-playing so far, I was asked in character what the symbols were and replied that they meant nothing and I had just bought the tabard off a merchant.

I've had nothing but nice things said on the costume and nothing to indicate it was inappropriate but I will be changing the tabard so there will be no arguments about it.
 

Dom

Scout
Gettysburg Staff
My question is;

Is anybody actually coming forward and saying that the tabbard in question is actually offending them OR is somebody complaining and being offended for other people because thy're too mature to allow something so insignificant and not intentionally offensive to bother them?

Last I checked, we are mostly adults here who are capable of thinking and speaking for ourselves and as long as nobody is offended and there is no malicious intent I see no problem here.

If religious symbolism in of itself is the problem here, a lot of rewriting needs to be done.
 

Breten

Artisan
There were a couple of comments, in the thread I mentioned, from people saying he should be required to change it. I'm with Mobeus, and believe if it's not being used it's just some fancy design IG.
 

Gilwing

Baron
Alliance Logistics
Can't find it but the best response given was from another topic where the person said something along the lines of..."You mean those Plus signs on his tabbard". Priceless.
 

Lurin

Duke
Gilwing said:
Can't find it but the best response given was from another topic where the person said something along the lines of..."You mean those Plus signs on his tabbard". Priceless.
While cute and charming, this kinda thing really doesn't help, religious symbols can't simply be brushed off by saying 'oh no, it's just a misshappen plus, or nested triangles cause I love geo-metry. I'm a fairly religious guy and I take real pains to avoid letting that influence my game because I made an agreement that such things would be left out.

Not to be a slippery sloper here, but it's just a matter of time before some plot wiseguy has the idea of a mod when a bunch of liches decide they hate the colony of elven mathematicians that live in their 'high roofed mathtorium' up on the mountain leading to their soldiers (wearing the sign of the plus) are sent on a crusade...er...focused assault to eliminate all undead (or Dwarves, or pick your group here) Preventing things like this from occuring wether someone is Christian, Wiccan, or Rastafarian is why we don't allow real life religious symbol in game regardless of justification. What's funny to some will hit close to home/be insulting to others.
 

Gilwing

Baron
Alliance Logistics
Lurin said:
Gilwing said:
Can't find it but the best response given was from another topic where the person said something along the lines of..."You mean those Plus signs on his tabbard". Priceless.
While cute and charming, this kinda thing really doesn't help, religious symbols can't simply be brushed off by saying 'oh no, it's just a misshappen plus, or nested triangles cause I love geo-metry. I'm a fairly religious guy and I take real pains to avoid letting that influence my game because I made an agreement that such things would be left out.

Not to be a slippery sloper here, but it's just a matter of time before some plot wiseguy has the idea of a mod when a bunch of liches decide they hate the colony of elven mathematicians that live in their 'high roofed mathtorium' up on the mountain leading to their soldiers (wearing the sign of the plus) are sent on a crusade...er...focused assault to eliminate all undead (or Dwarves, or pick your group here) Preventing things like this from occuring wether someone is Christian, Wiccan, or Rastafarian is why we don't allow real life religious symbol in game regardless of justification. What's funny to some will hit close to home/be insulting to others.
Very true Dave, a cross it a religious symbol but a plus sign is not. The symbol is question is a red plus sign. It is not a "t" which is a cross.

Some one has a similar symbol on there IG first aid pouch (the bold "Red Cross" symbol), should that be removed as well? I've also seen it on OOG first aid kits (I understand that).

I played Mythical Journeys several years ago when I used a square shield. I had my name on it with 2 lighting bolts, made from thin electrical tape. Some one came over to me and asked me nicely to remove it because, to them it represented the SS. I was floored that they would even think that, but I removed it with out any discussion. I had the same shield in NERO. Not one complainant.
 
Gilwing said:
I played Mythical Journeys several years ago when I used a square shield. I had my name on it with 2 lighting bolts, made from thin electrical tape. Some one came over to me and asked me nicely to remove it because, to them it represented the SS. I was floored that they would even think that, but I removed it with out any discussion. I had the same shield in NERO. Not one complainant.
To be fair, I saw a picture of that shield online once, and the only reason I even remember it is that someone sitting next to me said "Whoa, nazi shield!" when they saw it. I don't think anyone thought it was intentional, but you get that with lightning bolts sometimes.

Anyways, the whole thing really comes down to intentionally avoiding existing symbols. Much like avoiding naming your character Drizzt or Clark Kent, you should avoid using symbols that are very oog-y or cheesy.
 

Mobeus

Artisan
Overkill to the extreme regarding your slippery slope, seriously... It makes no difference.. Crosses existed before Christianity, Crescent Moons before Islam, Stars before Judaism, and Lightning before Nazis. You can go to extremes to push religious dogma into it if you wish, but there isn't any here to be found, and if you personally are offended by this, when you come up to be part of our chapter, feel free to lodge a complaint that it offends you personally. Making sweeping decisions for an international game of good repute based on a "potential" issue, is problematic at best. It's no different then slippery slopes arguing we as LARPers cannot tell fantasy from reality, and that if we play with mages and magic somehow we will worship demons or become murderers.. Really it's a sloppy illogical way to argue.

We don't have religion in our game, we agreed to this, but limiting our uses of basic geometric symbols because you can make up a situation where it could be parallel to any number of atrocities done in the world via symbols bearing similar references, that is simply an issue of an over active mind.
 

Wraith

Newbie
Gilwing said:
Very true Dave, a cross it a religious symbol but a plus sign is not. The symbol is question is a red plus sign. It is not a "t" which is a cross.
Actually, the equal-length arms on the cross is a Greek Cross, as used here it is specifically the Crusader's Cross, named after the papal banner given to the leaders of the First Crusade by Pope Urban II. It is one of several crosses of the sort that are Christian symbols, such as the commonly seen Maltese cross.

Wikipedia has a rundown of uses of the symbol historically and in modern context.
 
Mobeus said:
(...)Crosses existed before Christianity, Crescent Moons before Islam, Stars before Judaism, and Lightning before Nazis.(...) uses of basic geometric symbols
Irrelevant. Recognizable symbol is recognizable. A meaning has culturally been ascribed to it, therefore it implies that meaning, regardless of what the user's intent is (see also: swastikas).
Mobeus said:
when you come up to be part of our chapter, feel free to lodge a complaint that it offends you personally. Making sweeping decisions for an international game of good repute based on a "potential" issue, is problematic at best.
Nope. We're a national game, with one rules set. See also:
Mobeus said:
We don't have religion in our game, we agreed to this
That's the 'Alliance' part in the Alliance. The argument, for anything, can never be "well in our chapter we do it this way, we don't like the national way." Sure, some places will have different critters, or temporary plot effects, or run their logistics with different procedures for check-in, but "We don't like your rules, so we're not going to follow them" isn't a thing.
Mobeus said:
It's no different then slippery slopes arguing we as LARPers cannot tell fantasy from reality, and that if we play with mages and magic somehow we will worship demons or become murderers.. Really it's a sloppy illogical way to argue.
LOL. I love the irony of your 'anti-slippery slope' argument being a slippery slope argument.

Really, the issue sounds like it's going to be resolved on its own, so it's not a big deal. That is, however, why stuff like this never gets handled 'officially,' instead it ends up coming down to "Well, last time somebody tried to do X, it caused a big stink, so we should avoid it." That's as much enforcement as most of this sort of 'grey area' stuff really needs, so long as it gets wrapped up in the end. It came up, therefore it is an issue, at least to somebody, and it's getting fixed; what is and isn't acceptable is preserved within the group.
 

Mobeus

Artisan
International game... We are Canadians, a different nation Obcidian, thus the game is now International.

Hehehe and the Slippery Slope argument was supposed to be ironic.. that was the whole purpose.

As an Alliance, there is not sweeping rule about specific symbols, only about an encompassing no religion rule, otherwise these conversations would be sated... and even the owner has stated (Paraphrased) how a cross can be fine... whereas a crucifix would not be... and that in entirely understandable.

Chastising and brow beating people who bring up these concepts doesn't cause the issue to go away because"now other people will choose not to do it over a stink..." it can also galvanize people towards realizing this is an argument based on opinion alone... You cannot pander to every faith healer, zealot, or religiously active person, otherwise the whole Fantasy system would fall down as I said... Fae wouldn't be allowed, Demons not allowed, Golems not allowed... How far does this need to go before you just realize having a guy wearing a bit of red cloth in the shape of a cross is meaningless when many other in game mechanics already break that threshold by their very existence.. I would sure feel stronger about it if there was even a mention of anything Christian in the act of wearing it, but it was described in game as "Just some cloth he bought off a merchant" nothing fancy just a reason to wear it.
 
(Edit: Adam (Avaran) [was] right about "National = Large, collective" but apparently he deleted his post? So: )
Mobeus said:
International game... We are Canadians, a different nation Obcidian, thus the game is now International.
Nope. National. We had a (different) Alberta chapter once, and a Toronto chapter, but it's still a national game. International is a bad word around here. "America's hat" jokes aside, it's a big game; most games are not.

Mobeus said:
"now other people will choose not to do it over a stink..." it can also galvanize people towards realizing this is an argument based on opinion alone...
You're basically making my point here. The whole idea is that there isn't a hard line on this. There's not a big list of acceptable symbols, and there never will be. The 'what makes people uncomfortable' line isn't something that's easy to define. When you step over it, the only way that you'll know that you have is when it spawns three threads and hundreds of posts on a national forum. Boom, that's happened. Every time it does, the group learns a little more about the shared culture and avoids doing that again. We build a set of shared expectations, and that's the best we can really do. Stapling every example of things we've learned to avoid or are OK into the rulebook would be futile; it'll never catch everything, and someone will try to use things that got left out as things that are OK, when they simply haven't been tested. What we've learned here is "Big T on a shirt: not OK." Last time (that I can remember off the top of my head), it was about wands. It came down to "I'm uncomfortable with wands vs. the no religion rule, I use wands in my religion," and the resounding response was "so does Harry Potter." We learned "Wands: OK."

Mobeus said:
You cannot pander to every faith healer, zealot, or religiously active person, otherwise the whole Fantasy system would fall down as I said... Fae wouldn't be allowed, Demons not allowed, Golems not allowed...
No one is pandering, Re: your strawman argument. BTW, Demons aren't allowed.
Mobeus said:
How far does this need to go before you just realize having a guy wearing a bit of red cloth in the shape of a cross is meaningless
I'm gonna give this one to you again:
obcidian_bandit said:
Irrelevant. Recognizable symbol is recognizable.
 
Not that I'm not sometimes (often) guilty of, but just as we as a community work to establish what's acceptable in our in game culture, we should also work on having these boards be user friendly and even (dare I say) kind. There's no aspect of the rules that's worth resorting to name calling, calling people out or aggressive and cut-throat debate tactics just to make a point or win an argument.
 

MathGwyson

Artisan
Yikes! Coming to this thread late (odd, since it spawned from a picture I posted)

Summary of below;
- No one is arguing the religion rule should be changed, but changing the name of the class would treat the root cause of the confusion rather than treating just the symptom.
- While it is infeasable to have a list of what symbols are allowed, having a list of what symbols are NOT allowed would be better, although it would be always added to as time goes on.
A short off-the-top-of-my-head list would be;
Crosses (Weather this extends to + signs that are also used as a symbol for medicine still needs clarifying.)
Crescent Moons
Triskeles
Swastikas (clockwise or counter-clockwise, the clockwise ones are not Nazi, but are a symbol of life & abundance, but a lot of people don't know the difference.)
Star of David
Pentacles/Pentagrams
Ying/Yang
Quartered Circle
Ankh
Chalice (usually depicted religiously with a flame, but any chalice can draw accociations to Wicca)
Chandalabra
Oroboros
Caduces (arguably)
Eye of Horus
(Probably many more, this is just of the top of my head - Googling 'Religious Symbols' in google images gives a good overview)

There was a discussion on Runes in another thread and people said they were non-religious, however anyone who *really* knows anything about runes, they were said to have been created by the Norse Deity, Odin. Since Deity=Religion=Bad, I would lump runes in here as well (which is sad for me, I was thinking about taking fortunetelling and using a set of rune cards I've had forever that I never did anything with as prop)

And now on to direct responses;

evi1r0n said:
Taking the "Templar" word out of the equation we are left with a costume that violates the rules. This is unfortunate but it is clearly stated in the rulebook to avoid religions themes and iconography for your character (regardless of the templar contradiction). Your rules marshals/staff should have caught that and addressed it.
No one is arguing that the costume is not a violation of the rules (though Canadians tend to be less uppity about such things, they are STILL the rules.)

The point is that if the class was not called the Templar, the confusion never would have occurred in the first place. Lets fix the cause of the problem rather than treating the symptoms.

I didn't mean to start this topic up, I just happened to post a picture of my character that he was also in =Z.

I'd like to point out, however, the icon on his tabbard is a standard medical symbol, and could be interpreted as a healer's mark. The etching on the shield, however, is clearly a religious cross (longer 'tail/support')
(David mentioned this as well, now that I'm reading the whole thread through.)

So why then would having a background that draws too heavily on religion or religious themes be rejected?
My background draws on 'religious' themes, yet draws them to their logical non-religious IG paralell. Specifically, the Healer's Guild fills a smilar role that the Druids did in celtic society (Healers, Judgest, Astrologers, etc) but without the religious trappings. So my character is very non-religious even though the concept draws from a 'priestly' archetype from real-world history. I never refer to myself as a Druid.


Cavalier, Barrister, or a Gallant?
Cavalier suggest horses? Barrister suggests lawyer. Gallant is okay, though Spellblade or Mage Knight or even Warrior Mage fit better, and gives the (applicable) connotation that they are better at magic than their fighter-type equivalents.


Oooh...I love the way Warsage sounds. I think that's my new favourite, with Spell Brawler coming in as a close second.
+1 for Warsage

Mobius said:
we need to do the same with a hell of a lot of symbols, like Crescent Moons, Stars... etc.
+1. Crescent Moons are symbols of Wicca and Islam, so they are out. I see a lot of people when out and about wearing a Triskele and not realising it's a Druid symbol that represents the celtic trinity and power of 3. (Use google image search if you don't know what a triskele/triskellion is), so I can see that happening easily too.
 
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