Hierophant

Prev Page: Emperor Arcana <- -> Next Page: Lovers Arcana

V. Hierophant

Image Unavailable

Sincerity is the way of Heaven; the attainment of sincerity is the way of Men.

Overview

The Hierophant Arcana is the #5 Major Arcana, and is a card of wisdom. It is often depicted as a holy man wearing red priestly garb sitting atop a throne of authority, flanked by two pillars- one for law, and one for liberty. The man wears a holy mitre, and with his right hand makes a holy sign; with his left he holds a triple cross staff. At his feet are the keys to heaven. In this way, the Hierophant is unmistakably depicted as a Pope, or more accurately a pontiff: a builder of bridges, linking the world of men with the world of God.

The Hierophant is associated with wisdom, knowledge, discipline, stability, moral authority, philosophy and an understanding of the spiritual. Like the Emperor, the Hierophant is a being motivated by a powerful ideal from which they draw authority. Unlike the Emperor, however, the Hierophant's ideal is based on the mental and spiritual, not the physical. Whilst the Emperor shapes the world, the Hierophant seeks to understand it and the people within it; through this understanding, they gain the power of wisdom and truth. Mythopoetically, the Hierophant represents someone who, having ordered the world around themselves, begins to seek order in their own souls; in doing so they ask questions of things beyond the mere physical, questions of ethics, philosophy and the abstract.

The Hierophant is marked by their sincerity and dedication to a truth, whether this truth be philosophical, scientific, spiritual, ethical or personal. This dedication leads them to question the world around themselves, to seek something greater, and to expand the very boundaries of human understanding. For the Hierophant, this exploration is an ethos, a way of life; as they expand their knowledge, they meditate on their findings, then incorporate it into their soul, enriching it and empowering it. To the Hierophant, the truths they discover are sacrosanct and woven so deeply into their being that they are utterly unable to abrogate them. This understanding is then brought back to their fellows, who may only barely comprehend the invisible world of truth and concept that the Hierophant has made their own. Thus, the authority of the Hierophant is not like the awe-inspiring force of will of the Emperor, or of the warm, nourishing passion of the Empress; the Hierophant has authority because they know when others are ignorant; they understand when others are confused; they remain unyielding when the world itself seems to be chaotic and formless. Fully realised, the Hierophant embodies concepts usually only found in the world of thought: to other people, the Hierophant may seem to be a literal embodiment of justice, or virtue, truth, or logic. The Hierophant in this state is utterly incorruptible, untouched by the sure uncertainties of the physical world.

The Hierophant thus can represent stability: in a chaotic world, such sincerity and conviction can become a powerful touchstone. The Hierophant is also often an educator as they invariably spread their understanding of the world of thought to the people around them. However, this doesn't fully define the power of the Hierophant. The Hierophant has a dualistic nature: the Hierophant themselves can be utterly stable and immovable in their convictions, yet because the drive for truth and understanding is intrinsic to their identity, they can very easily fulfill the role of the iconoclast, the prophet, the revolutionary as their truth begins to challenge the accepted orthodoxy. It is in situations like this where the Hierophant's power is fully realised: although history is full of profoundly wise men who have been killed for posing a threat to a stagnant orthodoxy, actually destroying their knowledge and ideals proves impossible. The ideas created by the Hierophant in their search for truth take up a life of their own; in the end, the Hierophant may give up their power in the physical world, only to dominate what is truly important: the world of thoughts.

This dualistic nature means that it's entirely feasible for a Hierophant's greatest nemesis to be another Hierophant. By nature, a Hierophant lives with conviction, and although the Hierophant seeks to improve his knowledge, not impose it on others or live in self-denial, they can prove incredibly resistant to the opposed ideas of others, which may threaten the carefully cultivated sense of self the Hierophant has compiled through their own exploration. Ultimately, however, the Hierophant will learn to find the inherent truth of the matter and in doing so, grow to be greater than ever.

A reversed Hierophant, few will be surprised to note, often exudes resistance, reactionary tendencies and a sense of dogma. They often utterly refuse to acknowledge the worth of challenges to their perception of the world, and often prove unable to change with the times, especially if this would reshape the world into one they understand less; they may then challenge new ideas purely because they are comfortable with the old ones. Conversely, a Hierophant can instead question so much as to lose themselves; despite having the ability to search for truth, so quick are they to question, demolish and probe that they often have great doubt in their own findings and lack conviction. Sometimes, the Hierophant is like this because of an event where their understanding has failed them; seeking to improve themselves, they question themselves so much as to actually deconstruct their very ethos, leaving them directionless and stuck in the past.

The Hierophant is an Arcana that, on its face, may be taken to represent philosophy, belief and spiritual understanding. Whilst this can and often is true, and manifests in all people to a degree, the Hierophant is at its core an Arcana of understanding. The holy man who writes a dozen treatises on the ideal virtue by which humanity may become perfect is a Hierophant; so too is a scientist who firmly and clearly seeks to understand the world around himself with the scientific method, and in discovering something that invalidates an old belief, unhesitatingly discards the old and embraces the new.

Example Inner Conflicts might be the Hierophant becoming obsessed with finding out something to the detriment of their social and emotional wellbeing; being faced with an upheaval they don't know how to handle; or a crisis of faith in oneself leading to them trying to overcompensate for their perceived faults.

Mechanically, the Hierophant is dedicated to magic. However, within this domain it is balanced and does not strongly favour offense, defense, restoration or support in any one way over the other. Although this flexibility gives the Hierophant great range, they have no inherent specialisations and will have to create their own focuses through cross-Arcana work.

The Hierophant's aptitudes are unambiguously focused around intelligence. The Intelligence and Knowledge aptitudes ensure rapid progression of the Intelligence characteristic as well as many Intelligence-based skills, including mainstays such as the Lores, Logic and Tech Use. This gives the Hierophant a broad utility in the area of skills, and will never be missed. Intelligence and Fieldcraft can also make for more practical skills. On the other hand, Knowledge and Fieldcraft together basically make up the second aptitude of nearly all Intelligence-based skills as well as Perception-based ones.

Arcana Qualities

Characteristic Bonus Aptitudes Magic Characteristic
+10 Intelligence Fieldcraft, Intelligence, Knowledge Intelligence

-- Back to Top --

Arcana Exemplary

Exemplary Base Effect Rank 4 Improvement Rank 7 Improvement Rank 10 Improvement
Mind over Matter Your Major Persona gains an extra Knack slot, which may only be filled with a Magical Knack. Magic Circle: You unlock the Magic Circle Personal Time Action. It is a group action, and may be used once per week. All attendants may select one spell or magical knack you know; for the next three days, they are treated as knowing it. You, on the other hand, treat your Magic Characteristic Bonus (but not Intelligence) as being increased by X for the next three days, where X is the number of Confidant Persona users who attended your circle. You double the duration and range of all Magical knacks. Participants in a Magic Circle increase their Maximum Spirit for the duration of its effects by their S-Link rank with you. You gain 5, plus 1 for every Confidant Persona user who attended the Magic Circle.

-- Back to Top --

Arcana List

Grade One: Imhotep

A brilliant Egyptian polymath and Chancellor to Djoser. Despite his low birth, he was one of only two Egyptian commoners to be deified due to his contributions to medicine, knowledge and astronomy.
Details
Grade: 1 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Two: Omoikane

The Shinto god of wisdom and intellect. He is able to hold many different thoughts in his head at once, and always gives good counsel to the Gods.
Details
Grade: 2 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Three: Kongzi

The seminal Chinese philosopher of the Warring States period. He travelled the land, espousing virtuous living and central rule. His teachings formed the basis of Confucianism.
Details
Grade: 3 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Four: Brhaspati

A sage of Vedic India. He gives wisdom and counsel to the very Gods themselves.
Details
Grade: 4 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Five: Paracelsus

A polymath and famous physician and alchemist of the European renaissance. He was an iconoclast of unthinking European medical rationality and founded the formation of European rationalism.
Details
Grade: 5 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Six: Saint Peter

The rock of the Christian Church and by legend, the first Pope. He was Christ's closest disciple and spent his life spreading his teachings.
Details
Grade: 6 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Seven: Thoth

An Egyptian god with the head of a baboon (or an ibis). He is the god of magic, science, writing and arbitration. The Greeks considered him to be Hermes.
Details
Grade: 7 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Eight: Amadioha

The Igbo god of justice, peace and hard work. He judges the innocent or guilt of those accused of crimes, attacking them with lightning and swarms of bees.
Details
Grade: 8 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Nine: Marduk

Babylon's god of judgment and magic. Once a young god, he defeated Tiamat and Kingu and claimed the Tablets of Destiny, thus becoming the lord of the gods.
Details
Grade: 9 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Grade Ten: Brahma

One of the three great Hindu gods, he presides over creation and has four faces. He is wedded to Saraswati, and created the four Vedas, which revealed the truth of the universe. His weapon is the devastating Brahmastra, which nothing can resist and leaves the earth barren and bare.
Details
Grade: 10 Name: Wounds:
Elemental Attributes
Melee Missile Fire Ice Elec Wind Psi Nuke Bless Curse
Traits, Knacks, Item
Traits: Knacks: Item:
Powers
Spells: Arts: Passives:

-- Back to Top --

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License