Campaign of the Month: June 2012
Ceremony of Life
A simple ritual taught to all Initiated members of the clergy (Clerics, Priests and Druids).
Any Initiate (usually a cleric or priest), can sense the presence of any spirit that has arrived inside ground that is consecrated to their deity, and likewise druids can sense spirits within a druid circle. The Initiate can then proceed to raise the spirit with the Ceremony of Life. Note that if there is no Initiate at the sanctified site (which may be the case with ruins or similar areas), the spirit will not automatically be raised there. It is not possible for a spirit to discern whether or not there is anybody present on the mortal plane. Once within sanctified ground the spirit will no longer be at risk of becoming lost, but they also have no choice but to wait at that sanctified location until they are raised.
All spirits present during the Ceremony of Life will be raised. Note that the initiate has no power to deny this ritual to any spirit and cannot differentiate between the different spirits present.
The Ceremony of Life takes 5 minutes, during which time the old, slain bodies possessed by all spirits present for the ritual, vanish from wherever they may be, even if buried. All possessions remain wherever the body had been, unless the body had been looted or otherwise deprived of its possessions. In any case, the person’s possessions are not transported. The bodies of all spirits present at the Ceremony of Life will reform, even if the bodies were formerly destroyed. At the end of the ceremony, the spirit reenters the new body with a new Maker’s Gift. The new body will be identical to the one that faded, except that it will be completely healed of all damage, disease, lost limbs, scars, or any physical affliction. In addition, many curses and ritual effects will also be lost. The newly raised spirit is given the chance to start fresh and anew with their new Gift. This complete and total cleansing is often referred to as Purification. It is believed by worshippers of the Nameless One (the Maker), and by those who belong to The Great Church, as well as most civilized societies of the Free Kingdoms, that Purification also cleanses one of any guilt for crimes or sins committed during the previous Gift. So complete is the Purification, that the newly raised person will also have lost one character level (one level’s worth of EXP points). If the character is 1st level then he loses a point of Constitution instead.
If a body with a spirit tethered to it by the spell undergoes the Ceremony of Life, then the body is healed to the minimum degree necessary to sustain life. Diseases, scars and other maladies remain. A character raised in this manner does not lose 1 level. The person’s condition (i.e. hit points, damage, etc.) after being raised in this manner is as described in the raise dead spell.
An Initiate may use the sense spirit, locate spirit, or summon spirit spells in order to locate a spirit. The raise dead, resurrection, and true resurrection spells will allow the Cleric to resurrect a spirit or tethered body as if they underwent the Ceremony of Life, with the strictures and limitations of the specific spell (i.e. raise dead requires the body), but without the need to be within sanctified ground.