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What is death?

EinhardtEinhardt Member Posts: 53
This thread is in the context of Faerûn, but I consider it off-topic because it doesn't really concern any of the actual game.
What does death mean in that world? In the real world, I see death as a quality or state of living things that ceased to continue its life. I even deny there is such a thing as an afterlife because if you can continue through death, it's not dying. That's just a transformation, like from childhood to adulthood. You still have your life, just not as it were before. It's like how puberty is not death.
However, in Faerûn many people died and were resurrected. So death in this context is significantly different from what I perceive death in real life although they look similar (i.e. receiving mortal wounds or poisoned, etc.) Death in this world is not a big STOP sign that means you can't go on. It's just a potential temporary state, like some kind of disease or disability. It might be dealt with in the future and you might recover or it might not and you remain having this state until it's cured or for some reason unable to be cured anymore (which would be a true death).

P.S. I know that you can't resurrect those who died from old age. I just want to express my doubt if resurrectible death really is death.



  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 15,087
    Death Is Only The Beginning... summoning here @Anduin for obvious reasons :)

  • TeflonTeflon Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 517
  • NimranNimran Member Posts: 4,118
    Anduin said:

    @JuliusBorisov thank you for the invite...

    Death is an important part of life.

    So... perhaps I should begin by stating what life is in the most briefest of terms.

    Life is a process of replication that uses the resources around it to do so.

    All life will eventually die. It is preordained.

    Without death, the resources required to replicate and sustain life would quickly be used up... (Which in turn would kill them causing an interesting paradox...)

    Without death a species cannot improve. The strongest and most adaptable forms of life will replicate (procreate) and pass on its characteristics to the next generation, who in turn if they are successful will pass on their characteristics to the next. Life, through death evolves.

    ...I knew a couple of lucky Finches who evolved beaks to eat nuts...


    Take yourself out of the loop. Say NO to children and YES Lichdom!

    In answering your question a little deeper...

    The Forgotten Realms have souls. A life force outside the norm. You believe in the Gods and pull the forlock, bend the knee and pay your dues, your soul goes to live and serve the one you most revered. However, even though the celestial realms are far larger than the prime material one, to ensure over crowding does not occur, souls regularly return to the prime material plane. A slow process. I see it in terms of plate-tectonics... As one continental plate slowly slides under another into the fiery depths, on the other side of the planet volcanoes spit out boulders and lava to format new continents.

    However... People rarely see it that way, being sort of squishy, worrying about not getting enough oportunities to replicate and wasting time replicating by themselves. Death to these people is something to be avoided. At best a nuisance when fighting multiple dragons single handedly, at worst an expected outcome if you are a Kobold and suddenly find yourself randomly above ground, in a forest, in front of six well armed adventurers.

    Yes... The big picture is only available to Liches. The thinking mans Undead. So think about doing something awful, choose a container for your soul and shove two middle fingers into deaths personified eye cavities!

    I hope that answers your question.

    Meh, ghosts are better.

  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 792
    I've wanted for at least two decades to see a D&D setting that takes into account the massive sociological effects that would occur from stuff like "It is almost impossible to kill a rich person permanently", "Murders will usually be solved since you can speak with the corpse", "Castles make no sense since any of a half-dozen spells, not to mention dragons, make all the money and effort put into stone walls useless", "One 8th level fighter is worth dozens of 0-or-1st-level schlubs", "since the gods are real and reachable, human nature dictates some nation has probably either killed them or beaten them into submission so they serve on command", etc, etc, etc.

    "Cats can kill commoners about half the time in a straight-up fight" is optional. :smile:

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