[LMB] SPL: Orthoprax rite of the 5GU?

pouncer at aol.com pouncer at aol.com
Fri Aug 2 17:57:06 BST 2019


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Penric muses that pirates would give a sorcerer found aboard ship a
short shrift -- from thwart to heaving water.  

"Thwart" is an interesting word. Verb.  Bookmark that, please, and let's come
back to it someday.  Today -- "shrift".  

The expression "short shrift" according to Merriam Webster is first noted in
Shakespeare. (of course)  Miles's favorite, _Richard III_ .  The power of
Shax is such that the two word idiom survives even as the root word "shrift"
itself is nearly exterminated.  It means, however, the religious sacramental
rite of confessing, obtaining a penance, and completing that penance. It's
fundamental in Catholic tradition. Protestants looked at the commercialization
of "shrifts" via "indulgences" and threw out (IMHO) baby and dirty bath
water all together - downgrading confession to an "admirable tradition" but
not a sacred rite. Instead, a lot of collective reciting of standard texts: "We all 
fall short" ... Anyhow. 

Ista's pilgrimage was her attempt to get onto the road, regardless of the
reason, but some 5GU pilgrims HAD reasons, and penitence was as good
a reason as any. Make an offering at 5 shrines then go back and sin no 
more ...   We've seen that the Temples do have rites and do ask 
worshipers (believers) to participate in those rites.  (Dousing all the
fires and starting over each season being another such rite.)  And 
when a sinner knows he's done wrong and wants to make things right
but there's no one left IN the world to balance accounts with,  then acts 
of penitence performed for the gods at their temples and shrines is
some useful substitute -- if only for the placebo effect upon the guilty soul.

Or so I suppose.  Anyhow.  "Shrift".   The word traditionally refers ( I think)
to a performance set by the clerics, not chosen by the worshiper.  Penric, as
a divine, might set out a sequence of penitent acts some guilt-racked 
sinner might accomplish.  He may be formally trained in shrift - ing. 

In Richard III, and in use today, the idiom "Short Shrift" implies a short 
time period.  A 3 second or so interval.  Git 'er out, git it over, git 'er done.
But in an environment where a pilgrimage to distant shrines is a common
shrift, a short DISTANCE rather than a short INTERVAL may be inferred. 
Go on pilgrimage to all five corners of the temple, then you're done.  Penric might 
set a guilt racked penitent to chanting. "Thwack me 'til I'm less a blister" over
and over.  However long a time it takes.  But ... 

The distance from thwart to water is very short.  I'm inferring that in a 
cosmos where no Shax has yet introduced the time-based usage of "short"
with "shrift", Penric's usage to consider a short distance can be generalized to
suppose that MOST such "shrifts" include trips of some sort, shorter or longer.



 I'm attempting to make a meal out of a crumb from the latest, I know.

But I'm wondering if anyone else has noticed individual penitential rites and 
practices among the ceremonies of the 5GU's faithful?  (not like Daughter's
Day rites?)   Examples?

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