- This page is about the holy text. For other uses, please see Codex (disambiguation).
The Holy Codex was the text gifted upon the Church by Lord Deucalion and Lady Aurora in the 3rd century AF to guide the Church's actions and ideals. Though scribed within a journal originally on display at the Chrysalis Basilica in Shallam, it was later moved to the Temple of Concordia and preserved for posterity. Lord Pentharian and Ladies Lorielan and Tarah bestowed upon the organisations of Good with a new document, the Codex of Light, for They believed the now-replaced Holy Codex to be out-of-date.
I am Deucalion, God of Righteousness.
If you wish to look up the definition of "Righteousness" as recorded by the sages you will see, "n. - doing what is right or good; just; upright; godly." However, if you truly wish to understand these deceptively simple-looking words then you will come to find that they cannot be defined completely by a scholar's pen, nor by any single action, but instead by the course of a person's life, dreams, ambitions, and actions. My realm is that of goodness. As the codex states, goodness is not a relative term that one defines for him or herself, but it instead an eternal absolute, a holistic truth that is unchanging, regardless of the circumstances.
As a member of the Church of Achaea, you will be called to a higher standard in your words, actions, and life for you will be expected to live a "good" life and actively and without apology, seek to end all evil. There are many in the world that wish to walk through life, free to selfishly act however they wish without fear of consequence. It is from the mouths of these individuals that the lie of good and evil being "subjective" is born. But if indeed this was true, there would be no way for you to devote you life to good - for your "good" actions would be "bad" or "evil" to someone else. If such an action was truly defined by the individual - then you would never be able to combat evil" for in the eyes of the evil doer - they consider such an action "good" for themselves. It would be an eternal circle in which absolute truth would have no place.
Know also - that doing the good and righteous thing will be the greater challenge and will often also involve hardship, ridicule, persecution, humility, discipline, and faith. It is not a road to be walked by the timid, for it takes a pure soul and a strong will to do that which is right, even though it may not always seem to be what is easiest or best. However, I shall tell you - the rewards of such a righteous and good life will be greater than those who walk the wide path of evil shall ever know. You will learn the happiness that comes not through seeking selfish power, but in the simple pleasure of aiding another or standing up for what is right, even if it is not popular. You will find the quality of your life much enhanced and your path made clearer once you have devoted yourself to the eternal truth of goodness. It will not be easy, but know that in all you do - the spirit of Righteousness and Light shall walk with you as your strength and comfort.
Deucalion, God of Righteousness
Aurora, Goddess of Light
The Ten Commandments of the Holy Codex
Holy Constituents of the Church of Achaea,
On the following pages, you will find the ten commandments of the Holy Codex. Learn them well and strive to fully understand the spirit of the commands as well as the letter of them. If you incorporate these teachings and commandments into your daily lives, you will bring much glory to the Church. If you do not, you will bring shame upon the church and punishment upon yourself. These ten codes of the Church are not to be taken lightly, for without them, the Church is doomed to hypocrisy, confusion, and apathy.
Deucalion, God of Righteousness
1) Do not kill unjustly
As you fight to banish evil in the lands, there may come a time when you will have to use force against those who will, sadly, not respond to any other actions. There may even come the time that you must lift your weapon with intent to kill for nothing less shall stay your foe from his or her evil path. It is the intent of the action that makes the killing wrong and unjust. To kill in order to destroy evil when it rises against the church or otherwise opposes the forces of good in the land is one thing and indeed can be a righteous act. To kill because you don't like the individual and had an opportunity, or because they bore a title you didn't care for or were affiliated with a group you opposed, or because you were bored, or simply because you could is unacceptable. The gods have blessed you each with great powers and abilities. Use them responsibly for the glory of the church or find that these gifts are as easily removed as given.
Every action brings with it consequence, for better or for worse. If you are bringing righteous retribution to an individual for their actions (let us say, defiling a shrine, or killing a fellow member of the Church), enact such justice only once for each act of wickedness. Do not repay one death with ten. For though the Church must sometimes bring the use of deadly force against their foes, there should be no bloodlust in such killing.
The only exception to this code of conduct may come in times of war, and then only by the direct order and approval of either the Divine Patron of the Church or the Council of the Saints and/or Archprelate.
2) Thou shall not steal
Pretty simple: If it didn't belong to you to begin with don't take it. However, to recover something that was taken from you or a friend is not stealing. It is recovery of stolen property (assuming that property was not originally stolen itself).
Again, exception to this code may come in times where an individual is ravishing the lands with his/her wickedness and at the order of the Divine Patron of the Church, or the Council of Saints and/or Archprelate, permission may be given to remove from said individual his or her weapons of destruction or anything else that they might be using to aid them in their rampage.
3) Thou shall respect the Gods
As members of the Church of Achaea we expect you to always show the gods the proper respect they are due. This does NOT mean you have to agree with everything any god says. Obviously you cannot support every god or goddess since many of their realms are in direct opposition to each other and the Church is very "pro-goodness". However it is possible for you to respectfully disagree with them. Never assume a disrespectful or arrogant tone with any deity of Achaea, for humility is a treasure each of you should invest in daily, especially towards the gods. If not out of a desire to honour the Church with your actions, for your own health and well being!
4) Protect the innocent
"Innocence" is sometimes a difficult concept to define. The scholars define it as, "free from guilt, blameless, harmless". The innocent are not necessarily simply those who support the Church but they are most frequently the ones whom the evil and wicked will try to oppress. If a group or an individual is being threatened with physical, emotional, or spiritual harm, the church shall seek to champion them who are unable to do so themselves (assuming the individual or group wishes such protection). If such protection is refused or abused, the Church need no longer feel obligated to offer it.
5) Seek to end all evil
It is the ultimate goal of the Church of Achaea to put an end to evil of all kinds in the lands. When those whom openly serve evil complain that the Church is "oppressive" you may take that as an indication that you are doing your job well for evil should be oppressed by the Church. However, should you hear the same message from those whom are not openly evil and you know to be neutral or good in deeds as well as words, then have the maturity and humility to examine yourselves and see if there is truth to their words.
6) Always meet honorable combat in kind
Remember, you represent the Church of Achaea and you seek to walk a path that is higher than most of the world around you. All you do and say (or in some cases don't do or say) reflects upon the Church as a whole. Should you have to engage the enemy in combat seek to do so honourably. However, should your honour be abused and un-reciprocated, you are not bound to continue such honourable combat but should you choose to, you will bring even greater glory to the Church and greater shame and to your opponent regardless of your win or loss in the battle.
7) Good is unchanging, absolute, and eternal
It is the popular opinion of those who wish not to be held accountable for their actions that "goodness" is a relative thing defined by the individual. "What is "good" to me may not be "good" to you, and so we must each define for ourselves what is "good". This is a clever and popular lie, but a lie none-the-less. Goodness is an absolute truth and what is good now is good then and what is good here is good there. "Good" may not always be the easiest choice nor the most efficient or socially acceptable but that does not change its nature. If indeed goodness was relative you could not fight for "good" for what you called good another would call bad and you would both be right... if indeed it was all relative. It is not. Do not fall prey to such a lie.
8) Honour your word
Simple: If you make a promise, keep it. Do so even if it is difficult. If keeping such a promise would make you break any other element of this codex then: 1) You shouldn't have made it, and 2) Your original oath to this codex comes first.
9) Defend those who would defend you
Not all mortals of the world will oppose the Church. You will have allies and supporters as well as those who despise you and all you stand for with their waking breath each day. Treat well those who would befriend the church and support it. If not you may soon find you stand alone in your struggles.
10) Holy ground is sacred and is not to be defiled
This refers to ANY holy ground. Do not kill upon holy ground, or in the temple of any god, or in the PRESENCE of any god for the presence of the divine makes any spot on which they stand holy in that moment. If your enemies use this to cower in their temples away from the righteous wrath of the Church, let them cower. It is right for evil to cower from the Church anyway.
It shall be this code, laid down upon this parchment by divine quill, which shall serve to lead and guide those who would be members of the Church of Achaea. As in faith itself, it is the strength the spirit of the law that is most important. However, do not ignore it's "letter" in arrogant believe that you understand its spirit well enough to alter the "letter". The Letter of the Law is for clear guidance, for without clear and absolute guidance, many sheep are lead astray or wander off on their own to be devoured by the wolves. Incorporate each of these guidelines into your lives each day and you will find that your will bring glory and strength to the Church of Achaea. Meditate on them day and night and come to know and better discern the truth behind the words, for each one holds a much greater meaning than simple words can ever give.
Know also, that these truths are available to any who enter this holy place and reads the words written in this book. This means that those who seek to destroy the foundations and credibility of the Church shall also know what it is that you have sworn yourself to. Know that they will constantly seek to create a crack in your armour with your lack of dedication to the truths you have sworn to uphold and protect. Always choose your words and actions (or lack thereof) with wisdom and discernment, lest you bring dishonour to the Church instead of glory.
May you sheathe the Sword of Justice in the Scabbard of Peace. May you wear the Robes of Wisdom and don the Visor of Discernment and Vigilance. May the Sandals of Humility guide your steps and may the Belt of Truth ever hold fast to your waist. May the Breastplate of Righteousness ever guard your heart and may the Shield of Honour protect you from the slings and arrows of your foe. May you shine the Light of Goodness into every dark corner and chase away the shadows of evil and wickedness that lurk there, sending them back into their dark holes, where they cower before your righteous power. May you forever bring glory to the Church of Achaea.