A Commentary on the Covenants
As dictated by Prelate Dierem of the Temple-School of Julianos
A Covenant, also known as an Illustrious Pact or a Diathaka in the old tongue, is a spiritual commitment between a Divine and a mortal saint, generally considered the one true path to sainthood and the only way to directly interface with the unknowable Divines (as we categorize the Manifestations and Oracular Visions as indirect contacts). The Divines, it is sung, created this world from the blood their blood, giving their life freely to the benefit of the lesser spirits (that is to say, all living things). However, we mortals are blind and unfeeling to the world's gentle directions, spinning feebly in malfeasance and ignorance. We long to touch Aetherius and live in blessed repose beyond the crucible, but ever again we return to earth, dragged down by our imperfections, or fall victim to the predations of foreign or outsider spirits (the Daedra or Dmath).
Our world, deigned a cruel arena by the ignorant, is a Divine engine designed to reforge our unworthy spirits, breathe divinity in our souls and open the path to the heavens. In order to understand the Law and the Will of the world, we must receive guidance in the way of signs, which reveal the world's resplendent workings. These signs come to us in many ways: the Laws of Empire, the Commandments, the Visions and Errands of the Oracles, the cryptic words of the Manifestations. But the one true path, by which the Divines most clearly reveal to us the hidden workings of their creation, is the Covenant of Saints.
A Covenant is never initiated by the Divines themselves, as they are far and removed form the world. It finds root in the hearts of those exceptional mortals who, in earnest desire or great distress, find within themselves a secret aspiration that elevates them beyond lesser men. Called heroes or saints, these nominates find common cause with the Divines, making a pact through which the Divines may directly influence the world. They bring signs and wonders into the world, for us lesser mortals to see and study, so that we in turn may be brought to find Covenant, in this life or the next. A maker of Covenant who fulfills his duties and follows the Law and Will true and with honest intent shall, in death, transcend and sit at the foot of the nine sublime thrones in high Aetherius, forever free of the world's crucible.
But guard yourself against idle Covenant, for it is said that many, who felt called, and made pact with the Divines, were in truth unworthy. These spirits found the blessing and the curse too much to bear, and, breaking under the strain of the Divine, they renounced their Covenant to fade away as spirits of nill, or haunt the world as Un-Saints, dreadful and violent apparitions that mean harm to all living things.
Akatosh commands us to study the Covenants of the past, so that we may take heed and learn the path to sainthood ourselves. Let us pray and meditate on the myriad Saints of Cyrod, to take knowledge of the substance of their lives, and find our mirror there.
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Religious literature relating to the saints. Semi-common book in religious circles.