History of the Cult of the Illuminated
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- RY 732: The astrologer Vax of Chiaroscuro discovers the wonders of drug-inspired visionary experiences.
- RY 737: Vax acquires a pouch of bright morning, and consumes it in a single sitting. He wanders into the vermilion-glass ruins of Chiaroscuro. Days later, he returns, changed, with the Vision of Night: the world as a corrupted place, fallen and awaiting the coming of the Illuminated Ones, who will bring about the Cycle of Day and the Illuminated Kingdom in Creation. He quickly gains followers in the slums of Chiaroscuro.
- RY 738: The Cult of the Illuminated continues to grow, attracting followers from the downtrodden and dispossessed.
- RY 739: Vax adopts the runaway slave boy Shen Aru as his own son. Shen Aru has a gift of translated the drug-induced visions and glossolalia of Vax, and it is through his teachings that the Cult truly begins to grow.
- RY 740: The Cult of the Illuminated draws the notice of the Tri-Khan, who exiles them from Chiaroscuro, fearful of their message reaching the ears of the Dragon-Blooded. The Cult wanders through the Delzahn Empire, eventually taking up wandering in the Desertwall Mountains.
- RY 754: The aged Vax dies and is buried in a mountain crypt, still considered a place of pilgrimage for the Cult of the Illuminated.
- RY 760: The Cult becomes too large to survive roaming, and so it settles into the village Ratachul. They are definitively outsiders, being non-Varangian, but their fervency and philosophy of hope (and basis in astrology) are very attractive to the Varangian villagers, who welcome them.
- RY 762: In short order, the village is all but dominated by the Cult, and it is renamed Vision of Light. Shen Aru begins training full priests and missionaries, to send them into the world to preach the Illuminated Doctrine and prepare Creation for the Coming of Day. The Cult spreads to other portions of the South and into the Scavenger Lands.
- RY 764: At Calibration, the Embassy of Heaven visits Vision of Light, in chariots of light, with retinues of gods and elementals, all of whom bow to Shen Aru and declare him the Herald of the New Age. The Cult is bolstered by this, and it gains new adherents and clarifies its theology, liturgy and organization. Its training regimen kicks into high gear, and Shen Aru is taken away by the gods to a new home in Heaven.
- RY 766: The first Illuminated are taken in and spirited away by the Cult to the Sequestered Tabernacle and Kether Rock.