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Got a question concerning the Beryls and Shajads


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#1 LanRavin

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 04:13 AM

 Got into a heated debate with my friends. So we need an official ruling. Beryls are good and Shajads are evil? The book says they are beyond such concepts but my friends believe that dark doesn't always mean evil, such as Dark Paladin. The term dark means offensive in this case as opposed to the regular paladin who is focused on defense. They believe that some shajads, such as Noaha, are good and some beryls can be evil. This seems kinda messed up to me. This seems kinda messed up to me, seeing as the beryls are the daughters of light (good), and the shajads are the lords of darkness (evil).

So i need an official ruling so i can rest at peace cause something just isn't clicking here.

Also should people who follow the shajads be able to gain elan with them if they are folowing them for good intentions and vice versa, following beryls for evil? Again really confused and hoping some one can help.



#2 Kalis

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 04:57 AM

Beryls are not good and Shajad are not evil because light is not good and dark is not evil. Edamiel, the beryl of emptiness, is the domain of crazy nihilists and hentai villains.



#3 Ashley the Dragon

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 06:00 AM

 My character is a devout follower of a Shajad, and she's a "good" guy.  They are two sides of a coin, you wouldn't consider the tale of a quarter more evil than the head. Let's face it the Beryls are no angels and even the ones considered good, if taken to extremes, have the potential to do some pretty wicked things. It is the preconceived notion that light is good that is causing the problem. I've had plenty of arguments with friends on this issue.  And there was a time I used to view things in this black and white fashion as well.  It was only feel after I started playing a character, and met other PC/NPC that had elan with a Shajad that I understood the true scope of just how neutral the two sides can be.

So my ruling is that the Shajads and Beryls can be both good and bad depending on how you play them. And of course a good character should be able to gain Elan with a Shajad. As I said before, my character holds a deep love and respect for her god, just because she's fighting for the side of justice doesn't mean she can't follow the higher power she believes in.

 



#4 F3nr1s

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 07:40 AM

 I agree with Kalis and Ashley. There are some Beryls and Shajad, which I would say, are truly good or evil (Azrael would be good, Abbadon would be evil).

But for example Uriel: Uriel means freedom. Rules and Laws prevent true freedom. So, a follower of Uriel could be also a thief, without good motivs.

Or Noah: Everything within Noah is only to get better. Not to kill people or to get world domination, only to get better. An endless circle of improvement. So, you could be an lawful paladin and also a follower of Noah.

Mostly it is "simpler" to play a good guy with a Beryl or a bad guy with a Shajad, but it doesn't mean, it is always so.

I also think, that there is one important aspect in Anima: There isn't a true border between good and evil. Everyone is driven through is own desire, some can be considered good, some bad. This is one thing I try to get my player to understand.

EDIT: Forgotten to say: Beryls and Shajad don't give Elan because your "wishes" are the same as "their wishes", but they give Elan, because you are "similiar" to them through your actions. Like said: Noah gives Elan to people which alway try to improve and to be the best. It isn't important, that you wish to be the best, so you can save an orphanage or to burn the orpranage down, it only matters, that you are "similiar" to him (improve and try to be the best).

So long,



#5 Lia Valenth

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 07:49 AM

I will be agreeing with the people above. The only exceptions is Abbadon. Abbadon is by definition Evil. However, all others are not aligned in such a way. They each take an aspect of emotions, Abbadon chose Evil and thus no other Shajad can be evil because evil already has a champion.

For this reason, among others, a "good" person can get Elan with Shajad and an "evil" person can get Elan with Beryl. The exception being a good person cannot get Elan with Abbadon. There are others that would be difficult, but not impossible.

The best example in my opinion is Erebus. A Wizard will gain Elan with Erebus purely for learning magic, a Mentalist for learning Psychic Powers, a Fighter, Taoist or Technitian for learning Ki abilities and Techniques, and a Summoner for summoning and researching supernatural beings. Rather they are good or evil does not matter, Erubus likes people learning Supernatural stuff. Unless all Magic, Ki, Summoning and Psychic powers are evil to you, you can not argue Elan with Erebus is only allowed to evil people, or is evil in the first place.



#6 ElricOfMelnibone

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 07:51 AM

 Beryls and Shajads don't have most times a definitive evil-good alignment.

Michael and Gabriel are MOST TIMES (especially the latter) bound to good-aligned concepts, and so is (most of the times) Uriel.

On the other hand, Abaddon and Zemial are most definitely "evil aligned", especially the first.

Still Edamiel is certainly not the best entity to have around and the same goes with Barakiel. Even Azrael is somewhat too intolerant (and "intolerant" in my vocabulary is a very "evil" word). So I disagree with Azrael being a perfect example of good. A good god would grant powers against evil creatures, not against "dark" creatures without considering whether they are good or evil.

On the other hand Noah is simply pushing characters toward self-improvement (which seems good enough to me), Meseguis is caring for the suffering and (in her way) just in punishing those who cause pain to others, and Erebus is simply out there suggesting the study of occult and possibly inducing men to face their own fears (which seems good enough to me too).

Light and Darkness are two different ways of approaching problems in the world of Anima. Being Christians bond to the concept of Light in the world of Anima, just like in ours, most people tend to associate light elementals (I'm referring to the world of Anima...) to Angels and "good" creatures, while darkness elementals are associated with evil creatures, even when they aren't. But it's not like the Christian Church itself (in Anima, of course) is the organization making exactly the best things in Gaia...

Anyway, the clear border between good and evil is shaded, which is normal if you consider Anima is a JRPG setting (although created by Spanish) and in eastern culture the Absolute Opposition of good and evil is not present, since both are considered necessary for existence and hence most times (as is actually in truth) coexist within the very same individual.



#7 LanRavin

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 09:47 AM

 So what is the difference between a beryl and a shajad then?

Also as a paladin of the light i try and give every "evil-doer" the chance to turn away from their wicked path but if they continue to willing commit evil, then well "lawfull good doesn't mean lawfull nice"

Also it says in the book that Noaha also embodies the darker side of war and violence and that the weak (those without the will to live or improve) are just obstacles to be overcome. no where dose it say to help others improve, or to better others. Nothing about honor or respect. Just to do what ever it takes to improve yourself. To what end? Just so you can be better then every one else, for bragging rights? I still have yet to be convinced that Noaha is good.



#8 Lia Valenth

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 10:28 AM

LanRavin said:

 

 So what is the difference between a beryl and a shajad then?

Just to do what ever it takes to improve yourself. To what end? Just so you can be better then every one else, for bragging rights? I still have yet to be convinced that Noaha is good.

 

 

What is the difference? The Shajad are Dark Aspected and Beryl are Light Aspected. What does this mean, exactly? Nothing. There is no real difference. In general Beryls are nicer and Shajad are meaner, kind of. I suppose it would be better to say Shajad are sterner than Beryl. This is not always the case though.

Noah is interesting. He does not care the end, only the means. As long as you want and try to improve he will grant you Elan, your ends do not matter. Want to rule the world? Protect as many people as possible? Slaughter as many towns as you can? Defend your homeland from enemies? He does not care, as long as you try to get better.

Also remember Noah isn't just about improving, but improving and using the power you gain properly to whichever end you choose. You lose Elan for, "Abusing power foolishly". Noah is dark aspected because he embodies improvement for improvements sake, as that he does not care about your goal. However people who follow him can be improving for good or bad ends.

Noah is not good, but that is the point: No shajad or Beryl is good or bad (Abbadon excluded) they are merely powers. The people that follow them can be "good" or "bad", but they don't care about such concepts (save Abbadon-ish). Noah cares about people improving. That is it. Trying to apply human reasoning to "gods" is kind of pointless. However if you want to consider them on a scale of good or evil consider them as both good and evil, not one or the other.

As per the part about improving others, he does not care if you do that. What he does care is if you get people to make their own lives better. Proof of this is that he grants Elan for, "Imbuing self-improvement drive to others" and one of his powers he grants is, "The Will to Improve" which makes all those around the person with the power want to, "improve and better themselves".

It would probably be better to think of them as cosmic forces like gravity, death or heat than as beings with human emotions. They do what they do because it is their nature; good and evil, right and wrong, chaos and order, these things mean as much to them as they mean to gravity. (People will probably disagree with me here, as that they are alive, but as gods they are more and less complicated than other beings.)

Abbadon is the best example of this. While he is the embodiment of Evil, he is also not technically evil. Evil requires a moral code that can be enforced, he is merely doing what is in his nature. He is no more evil than gravity when it causes a plane to crash, it is the nature of things. You do not blame gravity for killing the people on the plan any more than you blame the Law of Conservation of Momentum when someone dies in a car crash.



#9 F3nr1s

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 11:19 AM

LanRavin said:

 So what is the difference between a beryl and a shajad then?

I would say, the great difference is: They are on different "teams".

The Beryls are on the light team, with their "leader" C'iel and the Shajad are on the dark team, with their "leader" Gaira. It is like with soccer (or football or any other team-sport), only because there are two teams, doesn't mean that one team is good and the other is evil.

So long,



#10 Sidisessinu

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 12:16 PM

 I see that the only difference between them really is human perception of the ideals they represent. Good and evil are just concepts created by humans to define what, as a society, they deem to be acceptable or unacceptable behavior and/or actions. There have been numerous instances where what one people do is considered a great honor and and the pinnacal of their ideal of good, while to another it is the embodiment of evil.

Take, and I use this as an example only, human sacrifice. To the societies that practiced it, the sacrifice almost all the times was willing and considered it to be a great honor because it was for the betterment of their people. To a society like ours, it is an evil deed that should be abolished without question. So in this case which is truly evil, the one following their beliefs, or the one wanting to impose another set of beliefs?

The answer is neither and both. Neither in that they both view themselves as justified in what they are doing, and both to each one the other is wrong.

Again as I said it is human perception that defines what is "good" and what is "evil."

To me the Beryls and Shajads and nothing more than sentient representations of the concept of yin-yang. They serve more or less as a balance to each other.

But in truth I would say all are grey, because it again comes to human perception. Some of the Beryls and Shajads, Noah and Erebus do not care for the means of how a mortals obtains their ideals, just that they do. While others care for the means rather than the results. There have been deeds done that may have seem noble and just when committed, but in the end turned out to be for some nefarious end. The Beryl that governs the deed done, would probably grant Elan for the deed, not concerning with the results.

Take for example a rich person in a city takes all the homeless and destitute people and provide them with work food and shelter, all paid from their own pocket. In this it would fall under the precepts of Mikael. But the rich person did this as a guise to gain slave labor for a private project or some other purpose, this would most be in line with Jedah. So in this case, most would say the rich person is a great person for doing this at their own expense, a pillar of society" for granting this "gift unto the poor and destitute. No as to enslaving those he "helped," some would say he is a fiend and heartless, but then others would agree with his reasoning. It was little more than a hundred and fifty years or so ago that slavery was an accepted practice in most "modern" societies around the world.

But anyway I'll get down from my soapbox. I'll just say this as I depart, "It is the person's own person views and beliefs that define what is 'good and evil.'Entities that embody certian  ideals and precepts of human nature are only defined as 'good or evil' by the ideals of a society."



#11 MrNefarious

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 10:28 AM

It all depends on how you use their gifts and what you do to appease them.

Here are a couple examples; I am currently playing a Shadow who is a strong follower of Mesiguis. Yes his tactics of revenge are definitely not good, but he still follows a code to keep him from becoming what he hates. He has used the Dark Lady's gifts for good & evil purposes.

In my group we have a Wizard who has a great amount of Elan with Erebus and while this Shajad may be about fear, our Wizard uses the knowledge of this "Evil" god to better understand a world he is not familiar with (long backstory, the wizard isnt from this plane of existance).

All in all each Beryl and Shajad have their good & evil aspects (with 1 or 2 on each side being an exception).



#12 ElricOfMelnibone

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 08:05 PM

 I'd like to point out that even being about "fear" Erebus stil ISN'T an evil god under such aspect, since the purpose of fear itself to Erebus is to improve oneself by SURPASSING one's own fears, which doesn't seem so "evil" to me.



#13 LrdVampyre

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 08:39 AM

I know when I initially read through Anima, I initially lumped Beryls into being "good" and Shajads as being "bad", but on closer inspection and reading what the two groups embody, I have to agree with everyone else so far...they aren't two camps of good and evil.

Beryls are considered good because the church (in Anima) has made them out to be angels, yet they are not wholly benevolent beings.  Their gifts do appear to be mostly 'good', but take for example the Beryl of Emptiness (can't recall the name at the moment).  She isn't exactly benevolent from a human's point of view (I'm kind of partial to my memories and emotions).

The one thing I have noticed, and I could be wrong, is that the Beryls seem to embody principals that apply to groups of people whereas the Shajads seem more inclined towards the individual and therefore the Shajads could be viewed as selfish (which most consider to be a bad trait) and the Beryls are somewhat selfless (which is typically viewed as being a good trait).


Careful what you wish for, you just might get it.


#14 DoomBringerDante

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Posted 02 February 2012 - 03:52 AM

Kalis said:

Beryls are not good and Shajad are not evil because light is not good and dark is not evil. Edamiel, the beryl of emptiness, is the domain of crazy nihilists and hentai villains.

Lol that made my day.

LanRavin said:


Also as a paladin of the light i try and give every "evil-doer" the chance to turn away from their wicked path but if they continue to willing commit evil, then well "lawfull good doesn't mean lawfull nice"

 


Sounds like lawful stupid, no offence.



#15 hellgeist

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 11:54 AM

The way I handle it is like this - Anyone with the intelligence of a child should realize that there is a difference between light and dark. In the light you can see things, in the dark, you can't see things.

  • Seeing things means you know what is there, which means you can think about it clearly, or its obvious and self explanatory - nothing is kept from you.
  • If you don't know whats there, that means your either ignorant of it and have to function on instinct, or its secret - kept from you on purpose, and you have to figure things out.

Quick Reference:
Light - understanable, obvious, structured
Dark - instinctive, mysterious, chaotic

You can put good and evil into any of those things, but light and dark are still different from each other, and very interesting because of that.

~H



#16 ElricOfMelnibone

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 11:44 PM

 Expose yourself to extreme light and tell me how clearly you can see things afterwards...

Your assumption goes against the very principles of some Beryls/Shajads.

Understendable, obvious, structured...yeah, of course...try to apply those to Uriel if you can...or even Raphael which IS INSTINCT since she's mother nature! Or Edamiel? Void, yeah, that's very structured...

On the other hand how would you consider Jedah CHAOTIC? Or even instinctive? Noah, might be little more instinctive and chaotic, still he's also somewhat structured, and his principles are definitely more obvious and understandable than those of most Beryls.

The "Light Faction" in Anima represents: "Create a complete harmony between all, without anyone dominating over another."

The "Dark Faction" instead represents: "Strong dominate on weak rightfully and for their own good."



#17 hellgeist

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 05:58 AM

In my post I simply addressed Light and Dark as concepts. If the writers or translators for Anima dont know their concepts, then its up to the users of their materials to decide whether to preserve real concepts we use in our language and understanding of terms, or a game someone made that has this stuff mislabeled or misrepresented.

Your descriptions of the factions are much more in line with Good and Evil as percieved by modern minds, than Light and Dark. As was pointed out earlier, and is usually pointed out in these kinds of discussions, Light is not the same as Good, and Evil is not the same as Dark - in concept and in practice.



#18 ElricOfMelnibone

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 08:44 PM

I probably expressed myself in a wrong way.

Beryl are not "innately" good (not most of them, at least), just like most Shajads are not innately evil, that's a point I entirely explained earlier.






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