Atudism

Atudism (originally from Atudean אתד, Atud, "Atuda", via Solarian and Piraean) is the ethnic religion of the Atudite people. It is the oldest of the Abrahamic religions and is closely related to Sotirianity and Irfan.  

Name

(Adolescent) goat -​ '-T-D (אתד) - 'Atud -> Átudai (Áτυδαι) -​ Atudaeus - Atudites - (Slurs/Slang) Tude / Tuje

Sects

Trinitarian Atudism

Trinitarian Atudism developed in the late 1st millennium BCE, though it had its roots in the mid-millennium. It developed out of the traditional worship of three simultaneous gods from the earlier millennium, stating that these gods were, rather, a singular unified trinity. It peaked in popularity shortly before the Solarian occupation, where it had come to be rooted in many local institutions, but failed to gain the widespread popular support. Two distinct branches of Trinitarian Atudism were known from the 4th century BCE: Adonism, predominantly guided by native culture and influences, and Solarism, predominantly guided by the occupying culture of Southern Euclea and particularly the Hellese.

Adonism

Adonism is one of two distinct sects of Trinitarian Atudism. It is highly conservative in its nature, seeking to preserve purity of the Atudites, their culture, their religion, and their people. A traditional rival to Solarism, it was known by the end of the 1st millennium BCE as a radical sect opposed to Solarian rule and influences. For this reason, it was persecuted under the empire. Many in the Atudite diaspora follow this sect, particularly those in Northern Euclea who fled to the empire's border regions and beyond seeking refuge from the emperor's authority.

The name "Adonism" comes from the Atudite word 'Adon, meaning "Lord" or "Master". It is the title by which they typically refer to the trinity. The conservative nature of Adonism shows clearly in their services, where the ancient Atudite names for the three bronze age deities are applied to the "aspects" of the unity. They are known for having preserved the Atudite language among their communities, using it in abundance for religious poetry and law books. This is a double edge, however, as their attitude towards the outside and other sects led to a fair degree of isolation from other Atudites. Although their written language is exceptional, their spoken variant has undergone significant shifts from the original that makes their particular dialect incredibly distinctive among speakers of the Atudite language.

Solarism

Solarism is considered the 'liberal' sect of antiquity. It is the lesser known, but more influential, sect of Trinitarian Atudism. Their name originated as pejorative from the Adonists, labeling them as outsiders and miscegenators. Solarists were noted as more compliant with Solarian rule than their Adonist brethren, and were significantly influenced by classical Hellese philosophy and culture. Despite their compliance with Solarian rule, the Solarists were still persecuted for their refusal to recognize the divinity and divine mandate of the emperor. Despite this persecution, they chose to settle closer to places of greatest Solarian influence to remain close to their adopted culture and philosophy. Their communities reside in these areas to this day.

The Solarist masses are notably different to those of the Adonists. They switch interchangeably between Atudite names and the Hellese equivalents. These equivalents were largely determined by the Hellese themselves upon making contact through interpretatio, but the Atudites living in the region initially offered their own interpretatio before accepting the Hellese version. Living in a much more connected society to the outside world, and to other Atudite communities, and living in a linguistic zone much closer to the phonology of Old Atudite, their dialect of the Atudite language is much more phonologically conservative than that of the Adonists. Having undergone significant influence by the Hellese and, later, Solarian languages, the Solarist dialect lost a few distinctions between sounds that were known in Old Atudite. They also developed some smaller subdialects based where they were- those in Hellese-speaking regions, for instance, never adopted Solarian influences into their speech. Those in Bokela have been further influenced by the local vernacular which developed out of Solarian.

Solarism, though lesser known across the Eucleosphere, is the more influential of Atudite sects. The trinitarian thought and pro-Solarian and pro-Hellese stances were the breeding ground for Sotirian philosophy. It is said thusly that the Sotirian religions were birthed by Solarist Atudism, and from that root is Solarism more influential than any other given sect of Atudism. Solarist scholars and commentators have taken pride in this; shortly after the fall of the Solarian Empire, the poet Ya'ir ben Yehoshua referred to the Sotirians as "Our brothers". The phrase "our cousins" to refer to them persisted throughout the Early Medieval period. Later medieval and Renaissance writers stated their pride in their Sotirian cousins, and frequently attempted to engage them in philosophical dialogue. In the modern day, Solarists pridefully retain their own versions of Solarian languages such as Atudo-Sulario, known in said language as Estudio or Sularo, even when in countries where Solarian languages and peoples are the minority such as communities in Coius.

Qudshism

Qudshism is the most conservative variant of Atudism. Based in the practice of the early 1st millennium BCE, Qudshism rejects the trinity adopted by many in the diaspora. They instead preferred to recognize the distinction between three deities that they had in their worship. There are two sects of this branch as well, Shamerism and Shaloshism. The former is considered the closest living religion to the original Atudite practice, while the latter has developed into a unique situation of tritheism. Its name derives from the Atudite word "Qudshu", common in the region even before any archaeological or textual evidence of Atudism, and meaning "Holiness".

Shomerism

The Shomerists, from the word "Shomer" meaning "to keep" or "to guard" represent the most conservative living sect of Atudism. While they profess the worship of three gods, they typically acknowledge many that Sotirians list as "demons" or "idols" as genuine and powerful. In this sense, they are the only extant group of Atudites that holds to a full and extensive pantheon of gods, but they choose to worship only the three whose name are known to all Atudites. Despite their religious conservatism and strict devotion, they are known for being more socially liberal traditionally than other sects of Atudism. Their presence is concentrated in the historic area around Adunis, having not undergone a diaspora under Solarian rule. They did, however, spread through merchant expeditions and the odd establishment of new communities across the Badawiyan region.

Shomerist society retains the traditional Atudite tribes and emphasizes their social importance. Many new tribes have been birthed since then across much of the northern continent, but these are instead viewed as clans of the larger and more ancient tribes. Lineages are well-kept and recorded, and are under constant supervision to track the development of the tribes. These tribes beyond the land of Adunis are known traditionally as mercenaries, jewelry smiths, scouts, guides, and shepherds. Several famous jeweled daggers across the history of the region are found with Atudite script and names printed upon the hilt.

Unlike other sects, the Shomerists retain the ancient Atudite script for religious and ceremonial purposes. They use the modern script as well, but for mundane purposes. Their dialect of Atudite greatly resembles Old Atudite, with very minimal difference to the standard language of the Solarian era. This is likely due to the atmosphere in which they have flourished, linguistically very close and, indeed, even reintroducing phonological values that were considered archaic by the time of the Solarians. They are also famed as having not forsaken the Atudite language, not even in small amounts- while it had been somewhat retained by other sects, the Shomerists never developed an Atudo-Badawiyan language. They were not well understood by the Eucleosphere until the late 19th century when expeditions to meet them and connect them to wider Euclean Atudite communities came to fruition. Through extensive studying and observation, a great deal about the origins of Atudism and what its presence during the Solarian era looked like.

Shaloshism

Shaloshism derives its name from the Atudite word "Shalosh", simply meaning "three". Originally believed to have been Shomerists in particular regions, they split with the rise of Salam. While the Shomerists retained their traditional faith and ways of life, the Shaloshists adapted to the new circumstance and became tritheists, believing in three simultaneous gods and nothing more, under the influence of the monotheistic faith of the Badawiyans. They developed a unique tradition of Atudo-Badawiyan poetry, using their own dialect of the Badawiyan language, which the Shomerists rejected, to write secular poetry. Their use of Atudite became more limited, though it would appear at times in poetry likewise using the Badawiyan style.

Traditionally known across the Salamist world as scholars and administrators, taking positions such as physicians and viziers, they eventually spread further. Establishing in Mazdaic territories, they would then move to Hyndic lands. From there, more communities would come to be established even further in the southernmost reaches of Coius. Despite this, their largest concentration is still wherever there is desert. Although communities speak Atudo-Hyndic and Atudo-Song, many use Atudo-Badawiyan for communication between groups that do not share the same language. This is the only known instance of Atudites using a language other than Atudite for interlingual communication. In South Coius, they became famous for their rich and vibrant blue turbans.