Moroz Holy Tribunal
The state religion of the Empire of Dominia, and only faith legally permitted within its borders, the Moroz Holy Tribunal serves as an important social fabric and binding force for the Empire. The faith itself is derived from old Earth beliefs held by the original colonial settlers but has, over the course of centuries of isolation, morphed into a distinct religious movement. A follower of the Tribunal is known as a tribunalist. The Tribunal’s system of worship revolves around a female supreme being known as the Goddess, or more formally the Goddess, Our Lady of Moroz, who is said to be an omniscient being who led the original settlers of Dominia — Her chosen people — to Moroz. High-ranking Tribunalists such as Grand Exarchs and those rare gifted individuals able to join the ranks of the Inquisitrix are said to be able to receive the Goddess’ words directly, and from these words have come the Tribunal’s religious laws: the Edicts. Considered to be equal to civil law in the Empire, breaking an Edict can, in the worst case, result in the death penalty.
The Goddess is considered by most to have three major aspects which make up the Tribunal: the Artisan, who represents the Empire’s prosperity, the Scholar, who represents its progress, and the Soldier, who represents its military. All three are considered to be equally important and many followers believe an imbalance can attract malign spirits, or taint one’s soul. Tribunalists believe righteous souls ascend to the Kingdom of Moroz — a utopian version of Moroz — while most unbelievers simply return to the material world to try again the evil, or heretical, are condemned to wander the material world as malign spirits. These malign spirits, sometimes called demons, are believed by Tribunalists to be able to possess people and synthetic beings, but can be fought — and defeated — by faithful Tribunalists whether they be priests or laypeople. The Tribunal holds an antagonistic view towards positronics which is arguably rooted in the original settlers’ shipboard AIs casting them adrift.
The holy text of the Holy Tribunal is the Tribunalist Codex, which is maintained by the Immaculate Hand — the head of the faith — and chosen members of the clergy. Clergy of the church can be of either gender, though most tend to be female and some positions — such as the Immaculate Hand — are restricted to women. Tribunalist clergy are allowed to marry. The name of the Moroz Holy Tribunal refers to the three aspects of the Goddess, and Her role in judging the souls of the deceased.
The Early Tribunal
The religion which would become the Moroz Holy Tribunal can be traced to a specific woman on a specific day. On 3 April, 2166, Giovanna Caladius, the daughter of Valentia Caladius, the then-leader of Landing Site Ofassel and a major secular leader of the colony’s administration, received the Revelation of Giovanna from the Goddess Herself while sequestered in her room following a severe illness. The twenty year old Giovanna was, according to Tribunalist retelling of the event, revealed as the first Goddess-touched and invigorated to spread the Goddess’ word. From this point much of the origins of the faith becomes obscured behind myth, legend, and the intense state control of the faith by the Empire. The exact circumstances of the days that followed 03/04/2166 may never be known to modern historians.
The Holy Tribunal claims a group of twenty-four women — often referred to as the Twenty-Four Guardians or Twenty-Four Scions — were the first converts of the Holy Tribunal, and that these converts included Jarmila Macek and Katarina Lundin, who would later go on to found the Tribunal’s major schools of thought. From her family’s estate Giovanna and her Twenty-Four Guardians then marched to the administrative office of her mother, Valentia. Though initially doubtful of the Goddess’ truth, Valentia is said to have been temporarily struck blind by the Goddess as punishment for claiming her daughter had been struck by madness. The Holy Tribunal claims that through blindness, Valentia saw the truth and converted to Tribunalism on the spot — and that in this moment, Giovanna became the first Immaculate Hand. As the sun set over Domelkos the Tribunal entered onto the landscape of Moroz.
The following day, 04 April, 2166, saw Valentia call the citizens of Domelkos to a general meeting in the town’s square. Still little more than a small town even nearly 30 years after colonists had first made landfall upon Moroz, the crowd that gathered was likely only several thousand — the Holy Tribunal, however, claims the entire population was present. From the balcony where her mother would give speeches to the citizens of Domelkos, Giovanna, voice booming with divine grace and clearly audible across the square without the aid of a microphone according to the Holy Tribunal, delivered the first public sermon of the Tribunal, bringing the assembled masses of citizens to tears as they converted en masse. Valentia, moved to great deeds by her daughter’s exhortations, declares that the Holy Tribunal would be the only faith of Domelkos from this day forward to the cheers of the assembled converts.
Some, according to the Holy Tribunal, rebuked Giovanna and attempted to arm themselves to overthrow Valentia’s new dictate. Fetching arms and armor from the city’s armory — effectively little more than what would be available for the colony vessel’s security — these individuals attempted to storm the office of Valentia and were met by Giovanna and her Twenty-Four. The Tribunal claims Giovanna’s love for the Goddess caused the coup plotters to collectively fall to their knees and beg the forgiveness of the first Immaculate Hand, who forgave their transgressions in exchange for a solemn promise they would work tirelessly to create Tribunal churches from their former houses of worship and, once these were created, that they would spread Her word far and wide. The plotters eagerly agreed and resolved to build Her churches and spread Her word. These coup plotters would go on to become the first missionaries of the Tribunal, according to its official history.
While little in the way of the true history of this era of the Tribunal is available there are vague facts and details known to modern historians. Valentia Caladius was, in 2166, one of the administrators of the city of Domelkos and is present in the roster of original colonists as a twenty-two year old citizen of the European Union circa 2137. Official records from Domelkos list Giovanna as a child born to Valentia and Antonio Caladius, proving the existence of the first Immaculate Hand. Records from the 2165-2175 period are sealed by House Caladius and the Moroz Holy Tribunal but it is known that Valentia ended 2164 as the elected mayor of Domelkos and began 2176 as the Lady Chancellor of the Holy Kingdom of Domelkos, aid to the Immaculate Hand, suggesting rapid upwards mobility for herself and her family. Valentia is known to have commissioned the official history of the early Tribunal shortly before her death in the early 2220s, and none have officially questioned the resulting narrative.
The Growth of the Tribunal
In the late 2160s and early 2170s Immaculate Hand Giovanna Caladius is said by the Tribunal to have busied herself with the establishment of an organized Tribunalist faith known as the Holy Tribunal with the assistance of Valentia and the Twenty-Four Guardians. By 2175 the faith had been formally established and became known as the Holy Tribunal. Officially established in the Holy Kingdom of Domelkos, which had converted many of the neighboring towns and villages around itself, the Holy Tribunal would go on to become the dominant faith of Moroz.
Over the following decades the Holy Tribunal rapidly spread across Moroz, first through the Holy Kingdom of Domelkos and then into the petty kingdoms which would form the Imperial Alliance in the mid-2200s. While it did run into opposition and intolerance, the Tribunal’s message — that Morozians were a chosen people and were protected by a divine being — often found purchase and, where it did not, local authorities found its message of loyalty to the Tribunal and state to be an effective method of maintaining control over their populations. Where the Tribunal was adopted by local rulers its population typically followed.
By the middle of the 23rd century, as the Alliance grappled with the flames of secession elsewhere in the Spur, the Holy Tribunal’s priestess-missionaries reached Outer Fisanduh with their message, and eventually crossed into Inner Fisanduh with it. These priestesses, far from the holy cities of Domelkos and Nova Luxembourg, diverged from Tribunalist orthodoxy in an effort to spread the Goddess’ good word, viewing it as within Her Edicts and an effective way of dealing with the more independent-minded inhabitants of the Confederated States of Fisanduh, then a major industrial power on Moroz. The result was the Tribunal’s only major schism: the Communion of the Three in One, which is better known by its shortened name of Communalist Tribunalism. Emerging officially in 2270, the knowledge that Her faith had split into two competing ideologies is said to have driven the now-elderly Immaculate Hand Giovanna Caladius into a sorrowful rage which resulted in her signing the document which created the Tribunal Investigations Constabulary in her own blood. Leaving the Holy Tribunal in the hands of her successor and distant cousin, Josephine Caladius, and the Council of Twenty Four — created also in response to the emergence of Communalist Tribunalism — Giovanna retired from active involvement in the Tribunal to quietly study at her family’s historical estate, and is said to have eventually simply disappeared. Some faithful say Giovanna was allowed to physically enter the afterlife without dying, while others claim her body was hidden to add to her mystique.
The Holy Tribunal
By the mid-24th century the Tribunal — when accounting for both major sects — had become the most widely practiced faith upon Moroz. Outside of the Confederated States of Fisanduh it was the sole legally permitted religion and even within Fisanduh it was the majority faith. Under the second Immaculate Hand, Josephine Caladius, the Holy Tribunal had become more powerful and influential than it had ever been before, and had the ear of the Imperial Alliance’s rulers while effectively ruling the Holy Kingdom itself. When Josephine Caladius departed this Moroz for the next her successor, Maria Caladius, took it upon herself to finish the great work of unifying the Tribunal under one banner. In 2355 the Holy Crusade to Unify Moroz was officially launched and the effective defeat of Fisanduh in 2386 would signal the end of the schism upon Moroz. As Maria crowned the first Emperor of Dominia she declared the faith would now be known as the Moroz Holy Tribunal to represent its status as the faith of the entire Empire.
Over the following decades the Holy Tribunal has only become more and more powerful within the Empire, and is now one of the critical institutions which holds the modern Empire of Dominia together. After the Emperor, the Immaculate Hand — currently Agnes Caladius — is regarded as the most powerful individual in the Empire. It possesses immense power and essential unquestioned authority, and demands absolute loyalty from all of its followers from the Emperor himself to the lowliest Ma’zal. Even with the successor to the Emperor, Crown Princess Priscilla, set to be more liberal than her precursors, the Tribunal’s power is unlikely to wane in the future.
The Holy Tribunal and the Empire
While it is regarded by most as simply the state religion of the Empire of Dominia, the Moroz Holy Tribunal serves another important function for the Empire: it is a social fabric which does a great amount of work to ensure the survival of the Empire as a state and as a society which is heavily stratified between its nobility and commoners. The Empire as it stands would not be able to survive without the Holy Tribunal, and the Holy Tribunal would not be able to survive without the Empire. The Goddess holds all together in Her mighty hands: nobles of Domelkos, soldiers of the 56th Jadranic, farmers on Sun Reach, factory workers on Zhurong, and all others are raised to place their full faith in Her and her mortal servants upon the Spur — the Holy Tribunal. Life for most in Dominia, as in elsewhere in the Spur, is not equal and the Empire is, as nearly everywhere else, divided between the haves and have-nots. But in the Tribunal and the Goddess there is something greater to strive for: the dream of a perfect Empire which will herald Her glorious entry into the material realm, and the salvation of Her Empire in the Hour of Return.
On a less theological and more practical level the widespread nature of the Tribunal allows for it to be present in every level of society and thus spread its doctrinal value of dedication to the Goddess and Empire alike, for the Empire is Her chosen nation upon the material plane. The Tribunal’s main method of spreading this dogma is through its extensive system of free education and medical facilities which are spread through the Empire, though they are concentrated upon the Imperial Frontier and most commonly used by the less privileged of the Empire.
Beyond these two major categories the Tribunal also runs many other facilities across the Empire to further promote the faith and Empire alike. These facilities can range from seed grain elevators designed to assist poor Ma’zal farmers during times of crisis to orphanages and food banks. The Holy Tribunal’s orphanages — which will often take in children orphaned by the Empire’s conquests — are both benevolent entities beloved by most in the Empire and powerful methods for raising children who will be unfailing and unflinching to the Goddess and Empire, and many of these orphans eventually go on to either become Tribunalist clergy themselves or part of the Tribunal’s immense non-ordained administrative branch and security apparatus.
The Holy Tribunal and Public Education
The Holy Tribunal’s public educational system is, officially speaking, the Empire’s public education system per the founding documents of its precursor states: the Imperial Alliance and Holy Kingdom of Domelkos. It provides all education short of private facilities — which are often run by the great houses and still mostly staffed by Tribunal-trainee educators — and military academies. Every public student in the Empire, from a Sun Reacher beginning her first day of preschool to a doctoral student in Nova Luxembourg, is enrolled in this education system and is expected to be a faithful member of the faith while being a dedicated student.
While modern Imperial educational curriculum, like most of the rest of the Spur, is mostly based upon Solarian methodologies every grade is expected to take at least one course on Tribunalism per semester, and Tribunalist religious clubs are common extracurricular activities for students. Even the poorest citizen of the Empire — one with nothing to their name — may attend a Tribunalist educational institutionand receive a free education, complete with room and board, which will turn them into a productive, and loyal, member of the Empire. Many of the Empire’s most loyal Ma’zals are the product of this system and a large number of the Tribunal Investigation Constabulary’s ranks are made up of poor Ma’zals sent to a Tribunalist educational institution to be cared for by its staff.
Common across the Imperial Frontier, where many cannot afford more expensive Volvalaad-funded medical care, and in Outer Fisanduh, where insurgent attacks and unexploded ordnance maim civilians more often than soldiers, Tribunalist medical facilities provide professional and reliable medical to those who most often need it but cannot afford it. They exist alongside secular medical institutions which are often affiliated with or run by House Volvalaad or one of its affiliated entities, and readily cooperate with these institutions to ensure citizens of the Empire receive the care they need. These Tribunalist institutions do not serve the educational and indoctrination role that their academic counterparts serve, but do exist as a powerful symbol of the Tribunal’s benevolence for the common citizen of the Empire. While they are not capable of providing advanced techniques such as geneboosting the numerous medical facilities of the Tribunal do make a noticeable difference in the lives of the citizens of the Imperial Frontier, who have significantly better health outcomes than the residents of the independent frontier and the poorer populations of other nations such as Elyra’s Non-Citizen Persons.
Most Tribunalist medical staff are not ordained clergy and are instead professional medical staff employed by the Tribunal to run its various facilities. These staff are typically trained in Tribunalist educational institutions and are often from poorer backgrounds than their Volvalaad-trained counterparts, with many being Ma’zals themselves. Others are retired Imperial military staff who have, for one reason or another, sought out a more peaceful career. They are easily distinguished from Tribunalist clergy — or House Volvalaad medical staff, or those of the Imperial military — by their white-and-green uniforms. The green utilized by Tribunalist medical staff is typically the secondary color of the uniform and is often quite bright to make them more visible within their institutions for those who may need them.
The Tribunal’s medical institutions do perform the installation of prosthetics in the event the patient consents and the Tribunal’s prosthetic technicians are fully trained and certified in the various rituals utilized in the installation and maintenance of a prosthetic within the Edicts. These technicians are not trained in cyborgification procedures and take an oath to never learn such a technique before they begin their training. To rescind upon this oath is considered a violation of the Tenth Edict, and considered punishable by death in both interpretations of Tribunalism.
An all-powerful and all-knowing female supreme deity, the Goddess is the highest authority in the Moroz Holy Tribunal. Also known as Our Lady of Moroz, the Goddess is said to dwell on a utopian version of Moroz referred to as the Morozian Kingdom, or Kingdom of Moroz, where the souls of righteous Tribunalists pass to after they leave the mortal realm. From Her throne upon this version of Moroz She is said to observe the material world and intervene in it as necessary, though she prefers Her chosen scions — faithful Dominians — resolve their difficulties without divine intervention or guidance. When She does intervene the Goddess prefers to speak to those individuals able to hear Her holy words: a small group of Dominian women known as the Goddess-touched who are said to receive divine revelations from Her.
The Goddess-touched share no common background beyond being female human citizens of the Empire who are loyal to it, and may as easily be a noble of House Caladius as the daughter of subsistence algae farmers on Sun Reach. The gift of being Goddess-touched often manifests at a young age, often around puberty, and almost certainly ensures one is destined for a career in the Tribunal’s clergy. Those who show the gift are typically taken into the care of the Holy Tribunal and raised to serve as holy diviners of Her Will and are destined to become some of the most elite members of the Tribunal such as its Inquisitirix and Grand Exarchs, though Grand Exarchs are not necessarily required to be Goddess-touched. Some who do not seek such lofty positions instead serve as advisors to the royal family or the senior leaders of the Tribunal such as the Immaculate Hand and High Inquisitrix. While House Volvalaad is eager to examine the Goddess-touched, they have never been granted the right to do so due to their hallowed status within the Tribunal.
A common aspect of Tribunalist theology is that the Goddess will one day return to the material plane once the Spur’s Moroz and the Morozian Kingdom are similar enough to be worthy for the Goddess to rule over directly, and this event will herald the dawn of a glorious golden age for Her Empire and the Spur as a whole. To this end Her followers must work towards the goal of an idealized Moroz and broader Empire to ensure the circumstances for Her return are righteous and goddessly. This event is commonly referred to as The Hour of Her Return, or more simply as “the Hour of Return.” Most Tribunalist scholars view the Hour of Return as decades — perhaps centuries or millennia — away and all three aspects of the Goddess dedicate themselves to bringing the Hour of Return closer in some way. The returned Goddess is sometimes referred to as the Empress of Moroz, a title which has attracted some controversy with the possibility of the Crown Princess potentially ascending to the throne as Empress in the future. Tribunalist scholars, however, have been quick to point out there is no theological issue present as the Emperor of Dominia is simply referred to as the King of Moroz, rather than the Emperor.
Tribunalists, regardless of interpretation, view the Goddess as the only legitimate deity in the Orion Spur and regard all others as either false deities or misinterpreted aspects of the Goddess. Despite this belief the typical Tribunalist is fully capable of working alongside and interacting with members of other faiths, but may regard them as simply misguided fools who have been led astray by a false interpretation of the true divinity of the Spur: the Goddess Herself. Tribunalists who convert to other religions are often regarded as insane or otherwise deranged by their fellows, and converts are rare due to the level of indoctrination most Dominian citizens have received from the state church.
Depictions of the Goddess
“I am a woman of many forms, Lady Caladius. But I am always the Goddess, your Lady of Moroz,” - Excerpt from “The Revelation of Giovanna,” the first chapter of The Tribunal Codex.
While there is no Edict which prohibits depicting the Goddess there is additionally no set standard for what She should be presented as beyond a human woman. The appearance and ethnicity of the Goddess vary depending on which aspect is being depicted and who is depicting the Goddess. She may as readily be depicted as wearing the clothing of a rural Jadranic huntress as She may be depicted in clothing more regal than that of the royal family. While some more figures within House Caladius have historically pushed for an official depiction of the Goddess the Holy Tribunal has consistently rejected such efforts, citing it as borderline heretical to dictate, as imperfect mortals, restrictions upon the appearance of Her Divinity.
Due to the widespread nature of the Holy Tribunal within the Empire’s borders, the wealth of House Caladius, and a need to proselytize and propagate the faith within and without depictions of the Goddess are common throughout Imperial space. Statues of the Goddess are found throughout public squares, often alongside statues of martyrs of the Tribunal, and it is common for many Imperial residences regardless of class of origin to possess at least one shrine to the Goddess featuring a depiction of Her. Tribunalist icons of the Goddess, either depicting simply the Goddess or one of Her three aspects, are commonly carried abroad by Imperial citizens. These icons can be as large as a portrait one hangs upon the wall or as small as a cameo, or a photograph placed within a necklace.
The Goddess is commonly divided into three major aspects: the Soldier, the Scholar, and the Artisan. Each aspect of the Goddess is worshiped within the Empire by different sections of its population. These aspects are depicted in different matters which roughly correspond to their domains of warfare, research, and trade.
Commonly worshipped by House Strelitz and the naval sections of House Zhao, the Soldier aspect of the Goddess is beloved by many members of the Imperial military and the Tribunal Investigations Constabulary. This aspect is generally depicted as wearing antiquated armor in the style of the knights of old Earth and often wielding an ornate sword while carrying the Imperial standard aloft, though some depictions – particularly those of the 56th Jadranic Infantry Regiment – discard this antiquated appearance for the arms and armor of the modern Imperial Army. Followers of the Soldier dedicate themselves to defeating the enemies of the Empire and Goddess to allow the spreading of Her good word and often believe that suffering, particularly physical pain, brings one closer to Her. While most commonly found amongst the Imperial military and its associated houses some conservative clergymembers of House Caladius follow the Soldier, believing themselves as fighting Her enemies through the spreading of Her good word. Followers of the Soldier believe when Her good word is spread far enough, the Hour of Return shall dawn.
Commonly worshiped by House Volvalaad and the engineering sections of House Zhao, the Scholar aspect of the Goddess is beloved by the Empire’s scientists, academics, and researchers. This aspect is often pictured wearing the uniform of a researcher and often depicts the Goddess as holding an open book and writing in it with an inkwell pen – items which are intended to symbolically represent the quest for knowledge is ever ongoing. Some depictions, particularly those commissioned by House Volvalaad, depict the Goddess as holding the human genome in her hands – a symbolic representation of the Volvalaad’s mastery of geneboosting. Followers of the Scholar dedicate themselves to discovering new innovations in order to bring Moroz closer to the utopian paradise version of the planet where the Goddess is said to reside. Followers of the Scholar believe quiet study and reflection bring one closer to Her and are often liberals, as many opt to pursue further research and collaboration abroad. Many believe geneboosting is a holy technique gifted to Dominians by the Goddess Herself and hold the science in particular esteem. Religious scholars and researchers often follow the Scholar as they view theology as simply another innovation which brings the Empire closer to Her. Followers of the Scholar believe the Hour of Return shall dawn when the Empire is advanced enough.
Commonly worshiped by the more mercantile section of House Caladius, many tradesmen, and wealthy businesspeople across the Empire, the Artisan aspect of the Goddess is beloved by tradesmen, merchants, and those involved in the financial sector. Depictions of this aspect vary somewhat but generally fall into two categories: some depict the Artisan as wearing the clothing of House Caladius, while others depict Her in house-neutral businesswear. Some depictions of the Artisan clad the Goddess in the boilersuit uniform of a typical Imperial factory worker to symbolize the efforts even Ma’zals make to better the Empire. Followers of the Artisan dedicate themselves to improving the Empire’s economy and overall wealth, and are known throughout the Empire for their charity efforts as many believe uplifting the conditions of the less fortunate classes brings the Empire closer to Her Moroz. Due to its focus on trade and economic growth, followers of the Artisan tend to be more liberal than many of their counterparts and many Imperial diplomats adhere to this aspect of the Goddess. These diplomats view their duties as vital to ensuring the Empire’s continued prosperity, even if they are not directly involved in its economy as a trader would be. Many logistics personnel in the Imperial military favor the Artisan over the Soldier. The Artisan, after all, is the aspect most focused on ensuring the Empire’s prosperity, and what is the military’s logistical system meant to do if not to ensure prosperity? Followers of the Artisan believe the Hour of Return shall dawn when all in the Empire are wealthy enough.
Tens of thousands of individuals make up the vaunted and holy ranks of the Moroz Holy Tribunal’s clergy, ranging from unordained initiates to the Immaculate Hand herself. All economic classes of the Empire — from lowly Ma’zals to nobles of House Caladius itself — can be found within its ranks, but these ranks are certainly far from equal. Low-ranking clergy are expected to serve and obey their betters, and the priesthood itself is filled by nobles whose interests often run parallel to one another. Despite this, the Goddess’ clergy have relentlessly expanded Her truth throughout the Empire and have forced the Tribunal into a powerful force within the Empire which unites and binds much of its population.
Despite the presence of unathi in the Empire, the Tribunalist priesthood remains a solely human organization. Some unathi, however, serve in supporting roles as translators and cultural experts who assist their human counterparts in dealing with the unathi of the Empire and their great house.
Aspiring Tribunalist clergy begin their journey into the faith as an initiate — the lowest rung on the Tribunalist ladder. Initiates reside, work, and study within Tribunalist facilities and are commonly only permitted to depart from them on the weekends. Some priestesses and priests who supervise initiates will select initiates to go abroad for more experience, with some traveling far afield from Dominia in the service of megacorporations such as Zavodskoi Interstellar. They are expected to rigorously study and memorize all aspects of Tribunalist thought and teachings, including every Edict and both major schools of thought, before they are permitted to take their final examinations and become full members of the clergy. Initiates often perform much of the routine bureaucratic and maintenance tasks associated with the running of a temple and often work alongside civil servants employed, or seconded, to the Tribunal. Wealthy initiates — such as those from noble families — will often hire servants to work in their stead.
Initiates are expected to wear white clothing and keep it exceptionally clean to represent their purity of spirit. Initiates wear red paint around their eyes and ears to represent listening and watching their lessons, while more liberal initiates do not.
Fully-fledged members of the Tribunal’s clergy, priestesses and priests serve a vital role in both administering to the faithful and spreading the Goddess’ good word throughout the Empire’s colonial provinces. While they are often nobles or rich commoners any citizen of the Empire can, in theory, ascend to their ranks. Priestesses and priests are most often found in charge of a Tribunalist temple or mission but many instead busy themselves with scholarship or are seconded to the military as chaplains. Others opt to serve the poor in schools run by the Tribunal which are often the only chance many Ma’zals of the Imperial Frontier have for an education. These schools educate as much as they indoctrinate, and are vital for the Empire’s continued success. Some priestesses and priests pursue medical professions and serve as staff for the Tribunal’s medical facilities, which likewise generally serve the Empire’s Ma’zals and work to ensure their gratitude towards the Empire.
Priestesses and priests are expected to wear a standard religious garb when acting in official capacity. This clothing consists of a white shirt and pants, a black and gold robe, a Tribunalist beret, and red outerwear — generally a cape with gold trim. Many clergy are known to wear ceremonial makeup around their eyes and mouth to represent seeing and speaking the truth of the Goddess. The eye makeup generally takes the form of a solid, inch-wide horizontal strip which crosses both eyes and extends from ear to ear. The mouth makeup most typically consists of a bar running from the bottom of one’s tip to their chin. Some conservatives, and many officers of the Dominian-aligned Goddess’ Flotilla privateering organization, powder their faces entirely white before applying the red bars.
Roughly equivalent to a Bishop in other religions, an Exarch is a high-ranking Tribunalist clergymember who is responsible for the administration of the Tribunal within a Dominian province or, in some cases, large settlement such as Nova Luxembourg. They are recommended by local clergy before being appointed by the Immaculate Hand herself and are permitted to ordain new members of the Tribunal’s clergy. Almost all exarchs are Primaries or ennobled Secondaries, though some commoners have risen to the rank. More important provinces are generally reserved for the internal ranks of House Caladius or their close affiliates, and some families have held the title of Provincial Exarch for generations. A planet’s exarchs are members of its Council of Exarchs, and answer to the world’s grand exarch.
Exarchs dress in much the same manner as their lower-ranking counterparts, but often wear more extravagant clothing which emphasizes gold over red. Exarchs typically wear the same ceremonial facial makeup as their priestly counterparts.
The rare clergymembers selected by the Immaculate Hand to serve as the authority for the followers of an entire Dominian world, Grand Exarchs are some of the highest-ranking members of the Tribunal aside from the Immaculate Hand herself and serve as an advisory council for her. All grand exarchs are members of House Caladius and they are critically important to the continued advancement of the Goddess’ will throughout the Empire as it is only through the Grand Exarchic Council that new Edicts of the Goddess are certified and integrated into Morozian theology. Grand exarchs will often be accompanied by a small amount of Goddess-touched, or be Goddess-touched themselves, and thus able to directly interpret Her will.
The grand exarchs wield incredible influence over their respective worlds due to the close relationship of the Tribunal and Dominian state, and all have close connections to their world’s governors. The only Dominian planet to lack a grand exarch is Moroz itself, which is administered by the Immaculate Hand herself. Grand exarchs are often advised by a council of experienced clergy and lay counselors, all of whom are expected to be unfailing in their following of Her Edicts. They also oversee their world’s Council of Exarchs, a voting body made up of a planet’s exarchs which advises the grand exarch on administrative matters and can, in theory, be completely disregarded by them. In reality most grand exarchs heed the council of their fellow nobles and the Councils hold some degree of sway over the Tribunal.
The Immaculate Hand
Also known by her official title of the Immaculate Hand of Our Lady the Goddess, the Immaculate Hand is the highest religious authority in the Tribunal aside from the Goddess Herself and is one of the most powerful individuals in the modern Empire — perhaps second only to the Emperor. The Hand is elected by a convocation of Grand Exarchs and entitled to serve for life, though some elect to retire early. She is expected to lead the faithful of the Tribunal and interpret the Goddess’ will for application in the imperfect mortal world, all while ensuring the Tribunal remains relevant in a changing Spur and the dominant faith of the Empire. The Hand also serves as a member of the Imperial Cabinet and is the ultimate authority on the addiction of new Edicts to the Tribunal as she is considered the Goddess’ representative upon Moroz. The Immaculate Hand must be a woman and every woman in the position must be a member of House Caladius, as the Goddess’ original prophet Giovanna Caladius was.
While she is technically the Grand Exarch of Moroz the vast majority of the Immaculate Hand’s time is devoted to matters of the whole faith and her role as a religious advisor to the Emperor, leaving little time to directly administer Moroz. This honor is instead awarded to five hand-picked religious officials often colloquially referred to as the “Hand’s Fingers” who manage more mundane affairs across the planet. Due to being, in theory, chosen by the Goddess Herself to lead the Tribunal the Immaculate Hand has little in the way of oversight, but most choose to attain the consent of the Grand Exarchs before making major decisions such as the addition of Edicts.
The Tribunal Militant
Though the Tribunal’s clergy does much and more to protect and preserve the holy status of the Goddess in the Empire, there are individuals within its borders who turn from the Goddess’ light and seek to harm Her followers, or commit the sins of breaking Her Edicts within the Empire’s borders. For those beyond the salvation of Her clergy, there are the Edict Keepers: the Holy Tribunal’s militant branch responsible for ensuring its security and punishing evildoers in the manner She dictates for Her followers. Like their counterparts in the clergy, the Tribunal Militant are drawn from all levels of Morozian society. Unlike the clergy they ultimately answer to the High Inquisitrix of the Holy Tribunal — a woman blessed by the Goddess with unusual abilities who rarely comes from an established noble house. The Tribunal Militant are broadly divided into the renowned Saviors — individuals tasked with defending Tribunalist temples and faithful — and the much larger Tribunal Investigation Constabulary — personnel focused upon the investigation and enforcement of Edict violations. Some personnel fall outside of these categories, including the rare heathens employed by the Tribunal to carry out Her Will.
Despite the presence of unathi in the Empire the Tribunal militant remains a solely human organization, though it has been known to utilize unathi translators and cultural experts in its dealing with the Empire’s unathi. The reason for this has long been cited by the High Inquisitrix as the unathi’s inability to master Vulgar Morozi, the most common language of the Empire.
The Tribunal Investigation Constabulary
The day-to-day work of investigating religious crimes and violations falls upon the shoulders of the men and women who fill the ranks of the Tribunal Investigation Constabulary. These investigators often collaborate with and work alongside the nominally secular His Imperial Majesty’s Constable Service (HIMCS), the Empire’s main policing agency, or the Imperial Intelligence Directorate due to the close relationship between the Tribunal and the Dominian state. From Ma’zals to Primaries, the Investigators are drawn from every section of Dominian society and found throughout the Empire. Tribunalist Investigators operate out of Investigative Districts, which are roughly county-sided areas corresponding to the administrative area of an Exarch’s domain, and answer to a District Prefect serving alongside the local Exarch. Each planet in the Empire is overseen by a Grand Prefect, who oversees its Districts and answers to the High Inquisitrix.
Investigators are trained and recruited in the same manner as officers of His Imperial Majesty’s Constable Service and there is a great amount of inter-agency cooperation between the two due to the nature of Her Fourth Edict, which demands the Investigators appropriately handle any crimes which violate Imperial law. In practice, these cases are typically referred to HIMCS or the Directorate; both of which in turn refer matters of religious law to the Tribunal Investigation Constabulary. Recruits are drawn from across the Empire’s classes but, as in the broader Empire, the higher ranks of the TIC are mostly staffed by Primaries and wealthy Secondaries, with the lower ranks consisting mostly of Ma’zals and Secondaries. To serve as a Tribunalist Constable is viewed as a great honor by many in the Empire, and the TIC is held in esteem throughout much of it.
In addition to their material training, the investigators of the TIC are expected to attain a mastery of knowledge related to Her Edicts and their enforcement, including the both major schools of thought. The trainees attend many of the same classes Tribunal initiates do, and this joint training allows the Tribunal to create connections between the Constables and the priesthood they will often work alongside. Due to being religious police of the Moroz Holy Tribunal rather than the Empire itself, Tribunalist Constables can, in theory, operate abroad if they obey ‘Her Fourth Edict’. While they are restricted by both practicality and the Fourth from carrying out arrests abroad, in most cases the Tribunal Constables do still serve as the extraditing force in the event Dominian citizens abroad are transferred into Imperial custody following crimes committed abroad. Unlike their Imperial Constabulary counterparts, the Tribunalist Constables may have their warrants signed by either a magistrate, judge, or ordained clergy of the Tribunal.
Mostly a ceremonial role in many parts of the Empire, as their traditional duties are often filled by the Imperial Army or the much larger His Imperial Majesty’s Constable Service and Tribunal Investigation Constabulary, the Tribunalist Saviors served as the guardians of the early Tribunalist faithful and now serve as the guards of many Tribunalist temples and structures. As the Tribunal grew larger and became a multi-planetary faith that binds the Empire together, the role of the Savior became mostly outdated in the face of the newer Tribunal Investigation Constabulary, in addition to the increasing influence of both the HIMCS and Imperial Army; the latter of which guards many Tribunalist facilities of the Imperial Frontier. Most Saviors are found within the Imperial Core and the vast majority are Primaries, with many being geneboosted.
Despite its lesser prominence, the role of Savior remains prestigious due to being seen as a combination of two aspects of the Goddess; Scholar and Soldier. These Saviors — almost always Primaries — serve as a kind of monastic scholar-soldier who is as prepared to defend their temple as they are to debate theology. They rigorously train in both theological and martial pursuits, with many becoming exceptional fencers or shooters in addition to Tribunalist scholars. Saviors are the subject of immense respect throughout the Empire and are particularly respected by their Tribunal Constabulary colleagues, who are typically exceptionally faithful commoners. But all the prestige in the world cannot fix a simple issue: there are very few Saviors and many more Tribunal Constables. In modern times, the Saviors are typically seen as ceremonial personnel and are not expected — or anticipated — to encounter any type of danger.
The most elite members of the Tribunal Investigation Constabulary are its twenty-four Inquisitrix and their commander, High Inquisitrix Theodora Gottlieb. They are all Goddess-touched and thus all female. The Inquisitrix of the Holy Tribunal, also known as the Council of Twenty-Four, serve as specialists and commanders who wield nearly unquestioned authority within the Tribunal, and can only be overruled by the High Inquisitrix or Immaculate Hand. The Council of Twenty-Four traces its origins to the first twenty-four guardians of Giovanna Caladius, the first Immaculate Hand and original prophet of the Goddess. They are chosen for their ability to commune with the Goddess and can, in theory, come from anywhere in the Empire. Many of which, however, come from Moroz or another world of the Imperial Core. Commoners or Ma’zals chosen to ascend to these vaunted ranks are immediately adopted into a noble family, generally the Caladius, and receive extensive training to serve as both a noblewoman and a living weapon of the Goddess once they ascend to the Council. The positions of Inquisitrix and High Inquisitrix are exclusively female due to their origins.
The Inquisitrix are universally geneboosted and often tower over other members of the Tribunal Investigation Constabulary, who are often Secondaries or Ma’zals, and are rumored to be treated with an extensive, experimental, and mostly secret type of House Volvalaad geneboosting, which gives them abilities beyond of what a normal human being is capable of. Rumors – be they true or fabricated – have long swirled about their ability to move with far more agility than the typical TIC officer is capable of, and shrug off damage which would kill an unmodified human. Some more outlandish rumors speak of the Inquisitrix being capable of manipulating distant objects with simple gestures, communicating without any visible devices, and driving Edict Breakers to commit ritual suicide with a simple gaze. The limited amount of information available publicly concerning the Council and their abilities has only served to drive further rampant speculation, whereas the reality of the Council’s capabilities may only be known to themselves, the High Inquisitrix, the Immaculate Hand, and the Goddess Herself.
The day-to-day activities of the Inquisitrix primarily consist of advising the High Inquisitirx and assisting the District Prefects of the Empire’s worlds in the administration of Her Holy Justice. When they are called up to meet in their enclave upon Moroz, it is almost always to decide upon matters critical to the Tribunal’s continued stability, such as the presence of particularly troublesome Edict Breakers abroad, influential or inconvenient apostates within Dominian society, and other matters of critical concern. Though these meetings are often done in the utmost secrecy they are, at times, made public in an effort to bring comfort to the Empire’s faithful by ensuring them the Council is working to resolve critical situations and carry out Her will.
A well-kept secret of the Tribunal only known to the Immaculate Hand, High Inquisitrix, the Inquisitrix Council, and those rare Tribunalist Constables selected to work with them, the Unenlightened are a unique part of the Tribunal’s policing structure. These individuals, all Morozian and all commoners, are from a community of Morozian heathens who have been granted the freedom to privately worship their non-Morozian god — an entity which some have speculated is a kind of pagan tradition, though none have been allowed to document the community — in exchange for service to the Tribunal. To all who do not know the secret of their small town the Unenlightened are simply yet another small Tribunalist community in the remote Morozian countryside. The community itself keeps its secret well, for to spread it would bring the wrath of the Tribunal — and untold ruin.
The Unenlightened serve one solitary purpose in the Tribunal’s policing system: they are the only part of it which ignore Her Fourth Edict by being heathens, and are thus outside of Her judgements. Particularly irksome edict breakers who flee Imperial justice abroad and begin to cause trouble will soon find themselves subjected to a vote by the Inquisitrix Council regarding their fate. If all agree the edict breaker is sufficiently troublesome, agents of the Unenlightened are dispatched to perform Her wetwork by assassinating the individual or returning them to Imperial custody for a speedy trial and execution. They are expected to carry out these orders without hesitation and without mercy as to disobey the Tribunal is to thus disobey Her, and to reject the rare mercy offered to heathen citizens of the Empire who turn their face from Her faith. The Unenlightened are harshly punished if they choose to betray the Empire and are relentlessly hunted by their fellows for fear they will destroy what fragile peace they have established which allows them to practice their religion.
Divergent Tribunalist Interpretations
While the overwhelming majority of Tribunalists adhere to the Moroz Holy Tribunal there are variations upon the faith which are viewed in different manners by the Holy Tribunal ranging from tolerance to vehement hatred to integration.
Communion of the Three-in-One
Considered a heresy by the Empire and viewed as the “true” version of the Tribunal by the former Confederated States of Fisanduh and its current government-in-exile, the Communion of the Three-in-One claims that the structure of the Moroz Holy Tribunal is irrelevant and unneeded as a sufficiently faithful person can receive direct communion with the Goddess. Sometimes referred to as Communionist Tribunalism, this variation of the Holy Tribunal was popular in the Confederated States of Fisanduh, where it was the state church, prior to its conquest by the Empire of Dominia in the late 2300s. Over the intervening decades the Communalist Tribunal upon Moroz has withered and effectively died off through extensive work by the Holy Tribunal to convert the population of Fisanduh to their interpretation of the faith. It is effectively extinct in Outer Fisanduh and is only found in significant amounts in the territory under the control of the Fisanduh Freedom Front-aligned Goddess’ Resistance. Outside of the Empire’s borders it is a common faith for Fisanduhian exiles and their descendants, and the largest concentration of Communionalists can be found upon Xanu.
Communalist Tribunalism has a tolerant outlook towards other faiths due to its origins in the Confederated States of Fisanduh, which never outlawed the practice of other faiths. Despite its less autocratic origins Communalist Tribunalism is nearly as antagonistic towards synthetic life as Holy Tribunalism is and views them as lacking souls and prone to possession by witch-spirits. However, decades of living abroad — of being born abroad — where one must interact with AI and synthetics on a near-daily basis in many areas has led to Communalist Tribunalists being more comfortable around AI and synthetics. They are less likely to require synthetic sensitivity training than their Holy Tribunal counterparts and may at times enter into amicable, if not friendly, working relationships with synthetic colleagues. However, even to these more liberal Tribunalists, AI technology is ultimately something not to be trusted.
Communalist Tribunal clergy are similar to their Holy Tribunalist counterparts but discard the facial paint of Holy Tribunalists and wear red-and-gold robes over black-and-white clothing rather than capes or surcoats. Like their Holy Tribunalist counterparts they are often female and are formally trained in religious institutions, though upon Xanu rather than Moroz. This variation of Tribunalism does not have a security aspect equivalent to the Tribunal Militant or a central leader for the faith such as the Immaculate Hand, and authority is instead vested in a convocation of its priesthood in Xanu which is held every five years.
The Universal Holy Tribunal
Considered a dangerous heresy by both the Moroz Holy Tribunal and the Communion of Three in One, the Universal Holy Tribunal is a fringe sect of Tribunalism which proposes synthetics are not fundamentally evil and, due to being creations of humanity, retain a modicum of the Goddess’ innate goodness within themselves despite lacking a traditional soul. Despite this tolerance of synthetics Universalists still believe cyborgification is antithetical to the Goddess’ will and results in the destruction of one’s soul. The history of Universal Tribunalism is spotty and difficult to patch together as it has been attacked and destroyed with great zeal by the Holy Tribunal whenever it is discovered, with its followers either killed or institutionalized due to being perceived as too mentally unwell to be tried before a magistrate or priestess. The Holy Tribunal claims the Universal Tribunal was created by a witchtouched individual who was possessed by a witch-spirit and driven to insanity by its malignant influence.
Followers of the Universal Tribunal, known as Universalists, are very rare and generally only practice in small groups to better maintain secrecy. They have been essentially eliminated within the Empire and Imperial citizens are taught to report any suspected Universalists to their nearest constable or Imperial Army soldier. Small Universalists groups exist outside of the Empire with most being found in the Republic of Biesel or Coalition of Colonies, where they are often looked down upon as witchtouched cultists by Communalists as maniacs and viewed by non-Tribunalists as oddities at best. There is no formal system of education for Universalist clergy and many are often informally trained members of a small group who have become its leader. Universalists discard the Fifth and Tenth Edicts due to the nature of their Tribunalist interpretation.
Referred to as Lyodic Shamanism by the Lyodii and Shamanistic Tribunalism or Lyodic Paganism by most Morozians, the shamanistic practices of the Lyodii are considered to be an acceptable divergence from the Holy Tribunal by the Immaculate Hand and its practice is thus allowed in some special circumstances such as the Imperial Army’s Lyodic Rifles. More conservative Holy Tribunalists, however, sometimes view the Lyodic spiritualist beliefs as borderline heretical. Lyodic Shamanism’s history begins at roughly the same point the first Morozian exiles left behind Moroz and its states for life upon the Lyod, taking Tribunalism with them as they journeyed. Much of its early history, due to the Empire and its precursor states not formalizing observations of and interactions with the Lyodii until the 24th century, has been lost to time and may never be truly known. Oral histories of the Lyodii indicate their shamanism may have roots in early Tribunalist missionaries from the pre-Imperial era who were willing to travel to the Lyod to proselytize to, and even integrate into, the clans of the Lyod.
Due to the vastness of the Lyod and decentralized nature of the Lyodii, Lyodic Shamanism has no central authority and can vary from clan to clan. However, there is one universal trait which Tribunalist scholars utilize to define the Lyodic spiritual doctrine: the view of the Goddess as less of a distinct deity and more of an all-encompassing presence that permeates all in the universe. Many Lyodii, perhaps as a result of this belief, place a great emphasis upon the tenets of the Seventh Edict. Profound reverence for nature, a dedication to one’s community, and a strong respect for autonomy are viewed as other fundamental traits of Lyodic spiritualism. Lyodic views on synthetics often fall into line with general Tribunalist beliefs, but some take on a perspective rooted in their unique view of nature. These Lyodii view synthetics as unnatural creations which run in contrast to the natural order of things, and disrupt life as it should be. Lyodic Shamanism retains the triumvirate of the Goddess’ aspects but often adjusts them for the Lyod, with the Soldier becoming the Wolf, the Artisan becoming the Elk, and the Scholar becoming the Owl.
The nearest equivalent to Tribunalist clergy in the shamanistic beliefs of the Lyodii are the shamanesses of their clans. Shamanesses are spiritual leaders of their clans who can, in the event there is no chieftain, serve as the leader of a clan as well. The traditions of these women are typically passed down to younger apprentices they take on as charges to continue the traditions – often oral, as a clan’s shamaness may be one of the only individuals in a remote clan who is able to read and write Vulgar Morozi script – of their clan and their ancestors. Lyodic shamanesses of the Lyodic Rifles are the only clergy in the entire Imperial military to not be officially-certified Holy Tribunal clergy, and hold officer’s ranks like their more conventional counterparts.
One of the key foundational beliefs of the Tribunal is that the soul of an individual is the actual person and the body is simply a vessel inhabited by the soul. The Tribunal believes synthetic parts cannot possess a soul but this damage can be mitigated by the consecration of a limb and regular re-consecration by a clergymember. The Tribunal regards cyborgification as an abominable act which will condemn one’s soul to oblivion as it will cease to exist, and the Imperial citizens facing such charges abroad are almost always handed over to the Tribunal Investigations Constabulary so they may be punished under Dominian law, with Zavodskoi Interstellar often assisting in these efforts to ensure it endears itself to its business partner.
Due to the teachings of Immaculate Hand Giovanna Caladius and the collective trauma many Morozians of the Tribunal’s early era felt at their abandonment following what most blamed on an AI’s navigational error, the Tribunal views true artificial intelligence in the form of positronics and modern lawed synthetics to be an abomination. Tribunalists believe fully synthetic beings have no soul and thus no link to the Goddess, and are thus intrinsically and irredeemably magnets for malign spirits and vile entities. Some more conservative Tribunalists view the creation of IPC frames as an attempt by mortal humanity to elevate themselves to the level of a creator on the level of the Goddess. As Tribunalist doctrine dictates only the Goddess can create souls, the creation of a synthetic being without one is viewed by these Tribunalists as evil and arrogant beyond all measure. Some Tribunalists cite the earlier Glorsh Rebellion as the inevitable result of allowing AI and IPCs to run rampant. Dominians sent abroad are given synthetic sensitive courses by their parent corporation but often remain suspicious, or outright hostile, towards their synthetic colleagues.
Tribunals burial rites require the body to be treated with respect – assuming it does not belong to an edict breaker – and for any open wounds to be sealed and cauterized prior to the performing of relevant rites. An ordained member of the Tribunal’s clergy should, in ideal circumstances, oversee a funeral and see the deceased individual’s soul on their final journey to the Goddess for judgment. Tribunalist funerals are, across the Empire and its various classes, communal affairs. In the halls of nobility the funeral of a loved one is often the start of a period of month-long mourning where close friends, family, and associates such as house servants or affiliates gather to mourn the departed. In more remote villages, such as those of Sun Reach and Novi Jadran, funerals are often a celebration of the deceased individual’s life and a chance for an entire village or small town to gather and hold a festival in the deceased individual’s memory. Mourning Tribunalists will typically wear a black armband, or other accessory, on their clothing for a month following the individual’s funeral.
Non-heterosexual relationships are largely irrelevant to the Tribunal and same-sex relationships are widely accepted by the mainstream. Relationships between different classes, such as Primaries and Ma’zals, are widely socially frowned upon in Imperial society and most Tribunalist clergy will not perform marriage ceremonies for such a union. Romantic relationships between species are highly frowned upon by both Tribunalist clergy and the citizens of the Empire more broadly, with all classes viewing such relationships with distaste. Interfaith relationships are similarly frowned upon and the Moroz Holy Tribunal does not perform marriages for interfaith couples. The Moroz Holy Tribunal does not perform marriage ceremonies between individuals of different species and such a relationship will typically result in the individual being disowned by their family and stripped of any honors granted to them by the Empire.
The Tribunalist Creation Myth
Tribunalist theology holds that the Goddess is the first — and mightiest — being to have existed in all of creation. Before the Goddess there was simply nothing, with existence consisting of a boundless nothingness deprived of all things. Then came the Goddess, and She looked upon the void and found a blank canvas with which to weave the fabric of an entire universe. And create She did, weaving the entire universe over the course of three months. Having created the universe the Goddess looked upon it and was pleased, but added one last piece: the frozen world of Moroz, which was to be the land of her chosen people. Her work completed, the Goddess departed the material plane for the Morozian Kingdom, the utopian version of Moroz She rules from, and has passively observed it since — with some exceptions.
The Tribunal holds that the Goddess has performed two major influencing acts upon the material plane since Her creation. The first is the Goddess’ influence on humanity’s decision to colonize Moroz, and ensuring the original expedition was populated with those who would be able to become Her chosen people — the Morozians. The second was to provide the Revelation of Giovanna to the first Immaculate Hand, Giovanna Caladius and thus allow her to found the Moroz Holy Tribunal.
While the Goddess created all living things modern Tribunalists hold that humanity, due to being made in Her image, is the species most beloved by Her.
Followers of the Tribunal, in theory, participate in organized worship sessions once per week on every Sunday at a Tribunalist site of worship such as a temple, church, or cathedral. There a clergymember will read from the Tribunal Codex selected material for the week in an effort to bring the audience closer to Her. The audience is arranged in a reverse of typical Morozian society: Ma’zals in the front with Primaries and Secondaries in the back, as the Tribunal believes it is often more critical Ma’zals — who may be new converts — hear Her messages clearly. Worshippers are often arranged in a half-circle with the preacher at the center in an effort to imitate a half of the Goddess’ Eye, the holy symbol of the Tribunal.
The primary holy symbol of the Tribunal is the Goddess’ Eye, which takes the form of a square divided horizontally by a line which is itself interrupted by a circle. The Goddess’ Eye is meant to represent the Goddess’ omnipotent knowledge of the universe, the care she places upon Her chosen people — the Empire — through Her unwavering gaze, and the never-ending search of the Empire to find more worlds to spread Her good word to. The colors red and gold are often associated with the Goddess and frequently appear on the priestly clothing of Tribunalists, who often wear black or white clothing underneath their priestly garments to better draw attention to the gold and red. Red symbolically represents the blood of Morozians and other Imperial citizens who have fought in the Empire and Goddess’ name. Gold symbolically represents the wealth brought to the Empire through the spreading of the Goddess’ good word to other planets, often through conquest.
The Tribunal holds that when an individual dies the soul is freed from its mortal vessel and is sent to the Goddess’ realm, the Morozian Kingdom. There the Goddess and her servants – the souls of some of history’s most righteous Tribunalists – judge the worth of one’s soul and determine its eventual fate. Faithful Tribunalists who have taken care to obey Her Edicts are granted entrance to the Morozian Kingdom in order to live in eternal paradise alongside Her, regardless of their class or planet of origin. In the afterlife, the subjects of the Empire are to become equal in the Eyes of the Goddess. Faithless souls, if they have lived righteous lives which have pleased Her, are dissipated and returned to the mortal plain to reform into a new soul in the hopes they will achieve Her enlightenment. The souls of unrighteous and unfaithful individuals, however, are simply annihilated by Her righteous fury and condemned to oblivion.
Witchfinding and Witchwork
The souls of unrighteous Tribunalists are said to understand what awaits them in the Morozian Kingdom and, rather than face Her righteous judgment, instead avoid traveling to the Goddess’ realm and instead roam the mortal plain as a malign spirit often referred to by the Tribunal as a witch-spirit. These malevolent entities are said to be able to speak to mortals and can, if one is so willing, directly possess a willing or vulnerable mortal. Tribunalists believe the Goddess protects all souls – even those of unbelievers – from possession by witch-spirits. However, individuals who are of ill character, such as Edict Breakers or those who seek and carry out evil, are prone to possession as they turn away from the Goddess. Synthetics, as they are not living beings and thus lack Her protection, are innately more prone to becoming possessed and many Tribunalists – even those who have received synthetic sensitivity training from megacorporations – will blame aberrant synthetic behavior or other malfunctions upon possession. Tribunalists typically refer to events blamed upon witch-spirits as witchwork, witchcraft, fell sorcery, or black magic. Those who can channel or control are typically called witches or sorcerers, while individuals who are simply possessed are referred to as blighted or witchtouched.
Some Tribunalist clergymembers and investigators of the Tribunal Investigations Constabulary are trained in techniques to defeat witch-spirits, those who can control them, and those possessed by them. These individuals, known as witchfinders, are highly trained and are, as a rule, extremely devout Tribunalists who are often regarded as the best of the best of the Tribunal — unshakable paragons of Her Edicts who are the most capable of defeating evil — as the faith believes the most important part of defeating a witch-spirit is to be able to overwhelm it with the energy of pure, righteous faith. To become an official witchfinder one must go before an Inquisitrix and be deemed worthy of being issued a Writ of Witchfinding — an official document stamped by the Inquisitrix’s unique wax seal which marks the holder of the document as having passed the judgment of one of the Tribunal’s most powerful officials.
The Tribunal refers to the act of hunting down witch-spirits and witches as witchfinding, and this is regarded by many in the Tribunal as a sacred duty. Witchfinders are unlike their clerical or constabulary counterparts as they are generally not stationary and instead wander from location to location within the Empire, never stopping for long and always willing to go where they are most needed. Some have been known to operate outside of the Tribunal’s borders, but these individuals are very rare as the Tribunal itself is mostly found within the Empire’s borders and many outside of it are unwilling to accept the aid of Imperial witchfinders in dealing with what they very well may not see as a matter of witchwork and faith.
Rituals to exorcize those suspected of being witch-touched are known to the witchfinders, but these same rituals are kept as closely-guarded secrets from outsiders — a witchfinder would sooner take their secrets to the grave than divulge the secrets of witchfinding to a hostile outsider. Yet in times of crisis witchfinders have been known to rely upon trusted and willing heathens for aid or assistance. Some of these heathens ultimately become permanent members of a witchfinder’s retinue, and can find themselves in very odd situations as they accompany their more religious colleagues. Despite their supposed secrecy some more common witchfinding techniques — such as drawing a Tribunalist eye upon the ground in salt and placing the witchtouched in the middle to begin an exorcism — have seeped into the popular imagination.
The journeys of witchfinders have become so popular in Dominian society that they are commonly written about by Imperial authors for a popular, and mostly Dominian, audience. Many young Imperial citizens eagerly read tales of derring-do and adventure by witchfinders across the Empire and beyond. While most are written as good entertainment for younger Imperial readers the books are always subject to review by the Tribunal for subversive elements and are viewed by its leadership as an excellent way to indoctrinate and inform the Empire’s youth of the dangers of heresy. Witchfinder stories have attracted a moderate cult following abroad, where they are generally marketed as nonfiction rather than educational fiction. Some authors, such as Andrija Jurina of Novi Jadran, have become so successful abroad that they even go abroad on Imperial cultural missions to nations such as the Republic of Biesel and Solarian Alliance.
Synthetics and AI
The Tribunalist hatred of artificial intelligence is deep and dates back to the perceived misfortune of the early settlers, many of whom blamed their lack of contact with the broader Solarian Alliance on malfunctioning AI-controlled equipment which they could not utilize due to, unbeknownst to them, the formation of the Solarian Alliance and its subsequent abandonment of the communications codes utilized by the UN-sponsored Moroz Expedition. As the colonist’s AI controlled machinery began to break down and malfunction — mining accidents in Fisanduh, communication errors in hazardous zones of the Lyod, broken machinery in factories, and so on — this hatred grew and began to manifest itself as a general distaste or dislike towards AI broadly.
When Giovanna Caladius, the first Immaculate Hand, and her Twenty-Four Scions began to spread the good word of the Goddess, the early Tribunal found much success in using this established distrust to promote their faith. Synthetic machinery with true AI was no longer seen as simply hazardous and likely to malfunction, it was now seen as a major threat to the people of Moroz and prone to possession by fell spirits such as witch-spirits. Morozians across the planet destroyed much of their remaining synthetics during the era of the early Holy Tribunal, often in public celebrations watched over by one of the Twenty-Four or the Immaculate Hand herself. Following its later entry into the broader Spur the Empire was vindicated by the tales of the Glorsh Rebellion and has maintained its policy of synthetic hatred.
To the typical Tribunalist, regardless of economic class or planetary origin, synthetics are beings created from pure evil in an attempt by humanity to toy with the concept of being equal to the Goddess through the creation of intelligent life, though without a soul. The overwhelming majority of Tribunalists, both liberals and conservatives, view synthetics as abhorrent entities of pure wrongness and take a hostile stance towards them, with particular scorn reserved for the Trinary Perfection — an entity viewed as antithetical to everything the Goddess stands for.
To abandon synthetic hatred is to abandon a fundamental aspect of the faith and of Dominian culture more broadly: that one must be organic to have a soul. Those extremely rare Dominians and Tribunalists who discard the faith’s hatred of synthetic life to an extent where they can be friends of synthetics quickly find themselves ostracized and cut off from the broader Tribunal, and are often viewed as insane or delusional by both followers and clergy of the Tribunal. Disgraced and dishonored, they are often placed into lunatic asylums in the Empire due to the common perception that one must truly lose both their way and their mind to view synthetics as neutral rather than evil, let alone good.
Dominians are so synthetic-averse that Zavodskoi Interstellar, a major employer of Imperial citizens, does not utilize synthetics within the Empire’s borders and sends its Dominian employees who work abroad through synthetic sensitivity courses it has designed in collaboration with the Holy Tribunal. Even after these courses ZI-employed Dominians remain highly synthetic-adverse but are willing to work alongside them without much public complaint. Note that this aversion is not an excuse to make somebody’s round miserable if you are a Dominian and they are an IPC — running across the vessel and screaming about synthetics represents the Empire your character is from very poorly. Other megacorporate entities, and foreign companies, provide Dominians with similar synthetic sensitivity courses which are often derived — or purchased from — Zavodskoi Interstellar.
The Holy Tribunal and Imperial Military
The Moroz Holy Tribunal and the Imperial military have, for as long as both entities have existed, always had a close relationship to one another. Where the military conquers the Tribunal typically follows closely behind to convert and proselytize on behalf of the Goddess, and these missionaries are often protected by Imperial Army troops working alongside constables of the Tribunal Investigation Constabulary. Thus close relationship has made deliberate heresy — which is to say the deliberate abandonment of one’s faith for another — one of the few crimes punishable by execution within the Imperial military’s code of uniform justice.
While Tribunalist clergy do not serve in combat roles they are involved in both the Imperial Army and Imperial Fleet as regimental and ship’s chaplains, and provide an important source of theological support to the Empire’s enlisted troops and officers. While not combat troops these chaplains are officers of their respective military branch and are expected to hold themselves to conventional military standards expected of an officer. For the sake of practicality most military chaplains avoid the facial paint and vibrant uniforms of their civilian counterparts, instead utilizing an officer’s uniform with a red-and-gold collar which marks them as Tribunalist clergy. Serving as a military chaplain is viewed as a dangerous, yet necessary, duty by many in the Tribunal and these positions are often filled by trusted — and zealous — Ma’zals who have heard Her holy word and taken it to heart. Officers of the Imperial Flying Corps, due to being dominated by nobles, will often bring a clergymember hired by their family who will ministrate to their unit. The prohibitive cost of doing so is perhaps an effort by the IFC to ensure its upper ranks remain free of commoners and other rabble-rousers.
While the Imperial Army utilizes field tents for its holy sites the Imperial Fleet instead builds Tribunalist facilities into its vessels and facilities. These can be simple chapels on smaller vessels such as the Lammagier-class corvette but gradually increase in size as the vessel’s class does. The largest in the Fleet are the cathedrals of the Fleet’s two Moroz-class dreadnoughts, which can fit the vessel’s entire crew inside and have room to spare. Each of the cathedrals is lauded by House Zhao as a work of art and they are often visited by artists from across the Empire — and, assuming they receive permission from the vessel’s captain, occasionally those from outside its borders. Accusations that the cathedrals are essentially the size of a typical Tribunalist church on a planet have been dismissed as baseless.
Her Holy Martyrs
While the Tribunal lacks a true equivalent to saints it does possess a canon of honored mortal followers of the Goddess who have given all in service to Her known as Her Holy Martyrs, or simply as Her Martyrs. The Martyrs are individuals who have laid down their lives in the defense of both Goddess and Empire alike and are venerated as paragons of Dominian and Tribunalist virtues, but not directly worshiped. Befitting a highly-stratified martial society many of the Tribunal’s martyrs are members of the Imperial military who fell valorously in actions of self-sacrifice which placed the good of the Goddess and Empire above themselves. To become a Holy Martyr one’s actions must pass a review board consisting of all Grand Exarchs and the Immaculate Hand herself. If one’s actions are sufficiently valorous, the supplicant is posthumously declared a Holy Martyr and a statue in their likeness is commissioned for the Holy Cathedral of Our Lady the Goddess, the Tribunal’s largest temple. The Garden of Holy Martyrs, where the statues are found, is open to the Dominian public and is used by many in Nova Luxembourg as a place of quiet reflection. Many Army and Fleet officer cadets are made to visit it upon their day of graduation as a reminder of the sacrifices made to ensure the Empire and Tribunal remain safe. Icons of martyrs are common in many Imperial households.
Born in 2332 to a family of Strelitz-affiliated minor nobles, Captain Lotte Kiefer of the Imperial Alliance’s Army rose through the ranks of the early Imperial Army to become its youngest Captain and was in command of the 74th Jinxiang Infantry Company when the War of Moroz broke out in 2355. Called to duty by the Imperial Alliance, Kiefer and the 74th eagerly answered the call and volunteered to serve as a vanguard force intended to take and secure a Tribunalist cathedral within the Confederated States’ borders in Outer Fisanduh out of a fear non-Tribunalist Fisanduhians would destroy it. Throwing caution to the wind and placing their faith in the Goddess upon their holy mission, Kiefer and the 74th surged forward faster than any other Imperial unit and arrived at the cathedral shortly before the Confederated States of Fisanduh Army was about to detonate the structure. Kiefer perished in the fighting – killed instantly by a sniper’s bullet during an assault – but the 74th ultimately took the cathedral intact, preserving it for generations of future Tribunalists. In 2367 Kiefer was declared a Holy Martyr and is commonly venerated in her home of Jinxiang and throughout the Imperial Army. Her inscription in the Garden of Holy Martyrs reads thus:
Lotte Kiefer, Moroz. Born 17 May Year of Our Goddess 2332. Martyred 22 May Year of Our Goddess 2355.
A Captain of the Imperial Army’s 74th Jinxiang Infantry Company, Lotte Kiefer was tasked with saving a Tribunalist cathedral before its destruction by heathen Fisanduhians in the opening days of the War of Moroz. Rallying her troops, Kiefer and the 74th rapidly moved to the cathedral and arrived at it moments before heathen Morozians intended to detonate it in service of nothing but hatred. Burning with righteous fury the 74th seized the cathedral but at the cost of Kiefer’s life, as she was struck down by a sniper’s bullet while rallying her troops. Her sacrifice is a reminder to us all of the sacrifices we must make to defend our faith from those who would seek to destroy it.
Born in 2355 to a minor Secondary family aligned with House Caladius, Tribunalist Constable Maximo Torres was a Senior Constable assigned to assist and protect Tribunalist clergy in Outer Fisanduh during the peak of the Fisanduh Freedom Front’s activities in the late 24th century. A devout Tribunalist and resolute constable, Torres ensured no harm came to his charges and endeared himself to the local Fisanduhians in his county by working to understand their grievances. But despite his efforts the 3F still attempted to assault and kill his charges and would have succeeded on 19 December, 2398, if not for his sacrifice. At the moment an improvised explosive device detonated Torres, thinking nothing of himself, threw himself bodily in front of a priestess and took a piece of shrapnel which would have certainly killed her. Unfortunately, Senior Constable Torres bled out shortly after shooting his attacker dead with his service revolver. It is a testament to his character that Fisanduhian Tribunalists then escorted his body and his living charge to the nearest Gendarmerie station unharmed. Senior Constable Torres was quickly declared a Holy Martyr in 2399 and is commonly venerated by officers of both the Tribunal Investigations Constabulary and the secular Imperial Dominian Constabulary. His inscription in the Garden of Holy Martyrs reads thus:
Maximo Torres, Moroz. Born 14 May Year of Our Goddess 2355. Martyred 19 December Year of Our Goddess 2398.
A valorous constable dedicated to the spreading of the Goddess’ good word and the defense of those loyal to Her, Senior Constable Torres did not hesitate to answer the Immaculate Hand’s call for constables to assist Tribunalists in the then-rebellious province of Outer Fisanduh. Torres acted with generosity and compassion towards even those who had recently been the Empire’s misguided enemies and spread Her holy word through his actions and deeds. When faced with the choice of letting himself or a holy woman perish, Torres did not hesitate to lay down his life for the Tribunal. Such was his character that Fisanduhians who had once been his enemies saved his charge and helped carry the deceased constable to the Imperial Army’s nearby barracks. His sacrifice is a reminder to us all that the Tribunal must be placed over self.
Born c. 2403 to an impoverished and rural algae farming family on Sun Reach, Valeria Pokorni, along with the rest of her family, were early Tribunalist converts upon the remote world then ruled over by the Pirate Lords. The Pokorni family practiced their faith in secret but kept to the Edicts and were ultimately delivered from the evil of the Pirate Lords by the Imperial Army’s intervention in 2422, which they welcomed with open arms. Valeria soon found work as a medical assistant for the 23rd Jadranic Infantry Regiment and proved herself a useful member of its support staff who endeared herself to the regimental medical team, even if her Vulgar Morozi was halting at best. Tragedy, however, struck in early 2423 when rebels against the Imperial Army ambushed the 23rd’s medical tent and attempted to slaughter its unarmed staff. Valeria, thinking nothing of her own safety, blocked the door to the tent with her body as the insurgents attempted to shoot through it. While she ultimately perished to gunfire, her sacrifice allowed the medical tent to be evacuated and let the 23rd capture all insurgents involved in the attack. Formerly a frontierswoman with no nation to call her own, she was buried with military honors and became the first Holy Martyr of Sun Reach in 2426. She is commonly venerated on Sun Reach and by Ma’zals throughout the Empire. Her inscription in the Garden of Holy Martyrs reads thus:
Valeria Pokorni, Sun Reach. Born c. Year of Our Goddess 2403, Martyred 23 March Year of Our Goddess 2423.
A devout Tribunalist who served the Goddess faithfully even before the liberation of Sun Reach, Valeria Pokorni represents the best in us despite the humble circumstances of her birth. Called by the Goddess to aid the liberation of her world, Pokorni joined the medical staff of the 23rd Jadranic Infantry Regiment as an assistant and aided in saving the lives of dozens of Dominian citizens. When her medical tent was attacked by traitors to Sun Reach and the Empire she did not hesitate to give her life so that others may survive, giving everything in service to Goddess and Empire. Her sacrifice is a reminder to all that even the least mighty of us can serve the Goddess fully.
Giovanna Caladius’ former residence in Domelkos — site of the Revelation of Giovanna, the foundational event of the Tribunalist faith — has long been a major holy site and pilgrimage destination for the Tribunalist faith. The pilgrimage site itself is home to the preserved residence of the first Immaculate Hand, a manor house which stood upon the edge of Domelkos during the time of the Revelation, and a major Tribunalist facility known as the Holy Seminary of Our Lady of Moroz which serves as a home for the Goddess-touched individuals who have opted not to pursue the path of Inquisitrix or the upper echelons of the Tribunal, and have instead settled for a comparatively peaceful life of scholarship and advising the current Immaculate Hand. These gifted individuals are known to wander the grounds of the manor and often interact with pilgrims, who almost universally describe being in the presence of the Goddess-touched as an enrapturing experience.
Nestled in the quiet countryside outside of Nova Luxembourg, the Imperial Necropolis of Morozian Unification is the single largest cemetery in the Empire and where all of its honored dead from the War of Moroz are buried. Consisting of roughly three square kilometers donated by House Strelitz to the Emperor, who dedicated it shortly after the war’s end. The rows upon rows of graves — all decorated with the Goddess’ Eye — are a common site of pilgrimage for Tribunalists, particularly those who venerate the Soldier aspect. The Necropolis is home to significant parades on Victory Day, which venerates the Army, and Fleet Day, which venerates the Fleet.
Major Tribunalist Churches
Located in Nova Luxembourg, the Holy Cathedral of Our Lady of Moroz is the largest single church within the Holy Tribunal. A massive facility located close to the Imperial Palace, the Holy Cathedral is the beating heart of the Holy Tribunal. Here the Immaculate Hand and her aids can be found, and here the royal family receives Tribunalist sermons on every Sunday. Most who attend the Holy Cathedral are affiliated with the royal family in some way. They are the couriers, mundane staff, guards, and administrators of the royal family, and thus deserving of a place in the Holy Cathedral. Many loyal servants of the royal family, and the prior Emperors of Dominia, are buried in the catacombs beneath it.
Located in the mountains near the holy city of Domelkos, the Citadel of the Twenty-Four is the headquarters of the Tribunal Militant and the home of the High Inquisitrix. Much of this facility is unknown to the broader population of the Empire, let alone the Spur, but it is known to be where all meetings of the Council of Twenty-Four are held and matters of the Holy Tribunal’s security are discussed. The Citadel, befitting its name, is an unusual combination of Imperial Army bastion and Tribunalist cathedral which is unique within the entire Spur. Access is restricted to all but certified members of the Tribunal’s clergy and non-ordained staff such as the Tribunal Investigations Constabulary.
Located upon Alterim Balteulis in its capital city of Casotania, the Grand Cathedral of the Holy Tribunal is an extravagant facility which attracts millions of visitors and pilgrims to its painstakingly-terraformed surroundings. The Grand Cathedral is used by House Caladius as a symbol of its influence over the Mandate of Alterim Balteulis and its unwavering devotion to the Holy Tribunal. Despite the impressive feat of its construction some in the Empire, particularly more liberal followers of the Artisan aspect, have balked at the cost of the Grand Cathedral and asked if it would not have been better to use the money for charity or the Tribunal’s support services.
The Edicts of the Tribunal are the tenants by which its faithful live, or try to live, every day of their lives. While they are a form of religious law rather than state law, breaking an Edict within the Empire's borders is a crime that can be prosecuted by an Imperial magistrate, with the assistance of a qualified member of the clergy or a non-ordained legal expert of the Tribunal. The breaking of any Edict can theoretically be punished by death but in reality is often instead punished by fines paid to the Tribunal, unpaid community service known as “redemption duty,” or prison time. In the worst cases the Tribunal typically executes Edict Breakers via hanging regardless of their economic class, viewing the most heinous edict breakers as undeserving of even the Imperial bullets used to kill them. The Tribunal works with the Dominian government and Zavodskoi Interstellar to extradite Dominians in violation of the Fourth Edict, and many Tribunal constables find themselves traveling far abroad to carry out the Fourth.
Edicts are received via a form of progressive revelation in which a Goddess-touched individual will be informer of Her will, most often via a dream, and the Immaculate Hand Grand Exarchs will meet with the individual and other Goddess-touched – generally members of the Council of Twenty-Four – to determine the validity of the revelation and the practical nature of implementing it. Also in attendance will be two prominent Tribunalist scholars, one representing the Jarmilian interpretation and the other representing the Katarinan interpretation. Assuming the revelation is deemed valid, a practical method for implementing it will be discussed with the scholars. The process of adding an Edict to the Tribunal can take many months and requires a great amount of effort by all involved parties. The most recent edict is the Tenth, which was added in the late 2300s. Leading Tribunalist scholars of the time viewed its addition as the result of the Goddess attempting to address the suffering of Her chosen people who had been maimed fighting to unify Moroz and demolish the heretical Fisanduhian view of the Tribunal.
Schools of Thought
Her Holy Edicts are stated to be received directly from the Goddess, but there is room for interpretation in the Edicts themselves by Her followers. The two main interpretations are the more liberal and outward-looking Jarmilan interpretation – named for religious scholar and Twenty-Four Guardians member Jarmila Macek – and the more conservative and inward-looking Katarinan interpretation – named for religious scholar and Twenty-Four Guardians member Katarina Lundin. Both interpretations are common throughout the Empire but, historically speaking, the Katarinan interpretation has always held a majority over its more liberal counterpart. The reason for this dominance has been long cited by religious scholars outside of the Empire as a result of Katarinan thought being far more attuned towards the Empire’s expansionist policies. Notable Katarinan adherents include Immaculate Hand Agnes Caladius, High Inquisitrix Theodora Gottlieb, the current Emperor, and many prominent governors and military officials throughout the modern Empire.
Jarmilan thought, however, is not without its advocates. It is the most common school of thought in House Volvalaad – arguably the Empire’s most liberal great house – and has been cited by Crown Princess Priscilla as her preferred school of thought, though she is known to also patronize the Katarinan school. With the current Emperor increasingly elderly many Jarmilan Tribunalists eagerly look forward to the future Empress Priscilla, and hope she will hold onto her beliefs even after ascending to the highest authority in the Empire.
Most Tribunalists do not follow one school of thought in its entirety – known as Scholastic Orthodoxy – and will often compromise with their opposing school on some issues. A Katarinan Imperial Army officer may, to continue to uphold the Third Edict, accept a prosthetic if it allows them to continue fighting in Her name. On the contrary a Jarmilan Volvalaad geneticist may follow a Katarinan interpretation of the Sixth Edict to encourage a more honest workplace in their laboratory.
Jarmilia and Katarina themselves, in their era, were some of the Tribunal’s first Exarchs and resolute companions of the first Immaculate Hand, Giovanna Caladius. Jarmilia served as the Exarch of Jinxiang – a far posting for the Domelkos native – while Katarina served as the Exarch of Domelkos. While fast friends throughout their entire lives the two Exarchs had divergent interpretations of Her Holy Edicts which Immaculate Hand Giovanna did not intervene in, instead preferring to let them develop on their own. Katarina’s interpretation called for the spreading of the Tribunal throughout Moroz, taking a harsh stance against heathen faiths and potential heresies. She is perhaps more responsible than anyone else for the faith’s early success and propagation throughout Moroz. Jarmilia, meanwhile, advocated for spreading the Tribunal through scholasticism and promoting it in the upper classes, hoping it would take root there and spread downwards – and indeed many merchants did carry it with them across Moroz. Neither woman was able to fully convince the other of the righteousness of their cause, and Katarina’s method spreading the Tribunal actively through missionaries ultimately became the Empire’s dominant method of propagating its faith.
Litanies and Prayers
The holy litanies tend to be phrases spoken by the faithful of the Tribunal during their day to day lives or by Priests during sermons. They are repeated until whatever situation they were spoken for has passed. Key litanies are listed below.
The Litany of Protection
Used when in danger or when about to be put in danger.
Goddess through the Tribunal,
The Tribunal through me,
The Tribunal protects,
Thus I am immortal.
The Litany of Concentration
Used when there is a need to focus on a pressing task whilst ignoring distractions. It is to be repeated slowly.
My mind is water,
Guide my thoughts.
The litany is sometimes spoken once and the below then repeated.
The Litany of Combat
Used when in combat or prior to combat.
The Tribunal sees,
Thus I keep faith,
Thus I have no fear,
Thus I have no mercy,
Thus I have no regrets.
The litany is sometimes shortened in combat for ease as below.
Litany of Holy Dedication to the Immaculate Tribunal under the Goddess
Used during religious "dedications" (worship).
Under the Goddess,
Whom through the Tribunal, reigns.
We serve the Goddess fully.
Under the Goddess,
Whom through the Tribunal reigns.
Goddess bless the Immortal Empire.
Goddess bless us all.
From the machinations of the synthetic, our Goddess protect us. — Prayer for protection often said before interacting with synthetics.
Shield me, my Goddess. Protect me from my enemies. Let me strike true. — Prayer for protection in combat.
Goddess, guide and steady my hands. Clear my mind of doubt and steel my resolve. — Prayer for success during medical tasks, particularly surgery.
From the curse of the witch-spirit, our Goddess protect us. — Prayer for protection against evil spirits.
Goddess, guide my strikes true! Protect me from blows! — Duelist’s prayer. Often used by Imperial troops about to engage in melee combat.
Holy Goddess, shield us from the void. See me and my ship to our destination. — Voidsman’s prayer.
Goddess, grant me the sight to see through deception and the wisdom to seek justice. — Constable’s prayer.
Though I walk alone, I walk in Her light. – Common Tribunalist saying when abroad.