Celestian is the Oeridian god of Stars, Space, and Wanderers. He is a gentle and enigmatic Oridian god, a tireless traveler who prefers to wander among distant stars and roam outside, rather than walking the lands like his brother Fharlanghn.
Celestian has power over meteors, comets, asteroids and other such objects. He has also has access to minor weather-based powers, likely to make the stars more easily visible from Oerth.
Worshipers, Clergy & Temples
Celestian has a small following in the Flanaess, being revered by astronomers, astrologers, navigators, philosophers, dreamers, and others who are interested in the sky and the cosmos. Demihumans and some other humanoids with their own racial deities sometimes worship Celestian alongside their own gods. Members of nocturnal races who have been banished from their kin, perhaps for crimes such as mercy or love for humans, often take to the worship of the Far Wanderer because though the sunlight hurts their eyes, the gentle light of the stars offer acceptance.
While Celestian's following on Oerth is small compared to that of his brother Fharlanghn, on other planes of existence and in the depths of space he is much more popular than his land-bound sibling. He is the deity of choice for planewalkers and many spelljammers. On Oerth, Celestian's followers wish to keep their journeys secret from those outside the faith.
Celestian's priests search the world, the sky, and other planes for magical meteorites, artifacts, and lore relating to Celestian's spheres of influence. They are adept at divinations. They are very studious and meditative, secretive, and detached from day-to-day existence. They will not use their expertise with stars and space to pilot warships or slave ships, and they will not aid unjust conquerors. Their favored weapon is the shortspear. They cooperate with the priests of Fharlanghn extensively.
For apparel, see hierarchy below. All priests usually carry a form of Celestian's symbol. Usually it is a silver brooch inlaid with seven gems: a ruby, a hyacinth, a topaz, an emerald, a sapphire, an amethyst and a diamond. The exact distribution of these gems can vary and always has a very precise meaning within the clergy. In fact, apart from the priests and the wealthiest faithful, the stars are often only semi-precious stones or colored glass, the colors of which are more or less close to those of real gems. The metal of the brooch, when not silver, is often blackened to symbolize the night sky.
Celestian's priesthood is divided into seven ranks of ascending power and knowledge, each differing from the last in its number and the placement of the gems in its holy symbol.
The First Order wears light blue robes. Their symbol is the ruby.
The Second Order wears robes of light gray. Their symbol is the jacinth.
The Third Order wears robes of violet. Their symbol is the topaz.
The Fourth Order wears blue-gray robes. Their gem is the emerald.
The Fifth Order wears dark blue robes. Their gem is the sapphire.
The Sixth Order wears robes of the deepest purple hue. They use the amethyst as their symbol.
The Seventh Order is the most potent. They wear robes of black, and their gem is the diamond.
Celestian shrines are located in the country, away from city lights, and are often built upon mountain peaks or hilltops with a clear view of the sky.
The "home" temple of Celestian is located in the Griff Mountains. The faithful of the Far Wanderer record their journeys to the stars and keep records of it beneath Grey College in the Free City of Greyhawk. There is a major temple to Celestian outside the village of Thrunch. A place in the Barrier Peaks is a holy pilgrimage site for Celestian's faithful.
There are Celestian hospices throughout the depths of space, tended to by priests who have decided to stay in one place for a time. They give shelter, food, air, and advice, appreciating donations, though there is no set schedule of fees. They may give directions and help travelers find work.
On the Material Plane, masses always take place under the open sky, at night, preferably when the stars are clearly visible. They are often accompanied by an astronomy lesson, an astrology session or an account of an adventurous journey.
Most of the devotees do their worship in private and rarely go to a temple. The best tribute you can give to Celestian is to travel to unknown lands and acquire new knowledge.
In order to have his blessing for their journeys in stellar ships, even those who have a great detachment from the gods do not forget to make an offering to Celestian, by throwing some precious stones over the rail.
Dark Night, also called Black Night, Star Night, and the Night of Hopeful Dawn, is observed on Goodmonth 11. It is a holy night for the church of Celestian because the stars are so easy to observe without the light of one of the moons getting in the way. If priests can, they gather around the nearest observatory for long nocturnal ceremonies, studying the sky and debating astrology.
Great Moon's Glory on Readying 11th, when Luna is full but Celene is new, is holy to Celestian.
Midwinter Night, also known as Dark Time, Dim Time, and Handmaiden's Glory. It is this night when Luna is completely dark and only Celene is visible in the sky. It is the longest night of the year, during which clerics of Celestian conduct all-night services of moonwatching and stargazing.
The Servant's Triumph is the night of the winter solstice is the longest of the year and also the night when the starry sky is the most beautiful. The pale glow of Luna, which is new, is absent and allows Celene, who is full, to appear in all its splendor and bathe the sky with its soft bluish glow, only slightly disturbing the observation of the stars and providing a magnificent spectacle. If, unfortunately, the sky is too cloudy, we can count on the druids to disperse the unwanted clouds, because it is also a sacred night for many druidic cults.
It is the most sacred night of the year for the Celestian followers, who party and never go to bed before seeing the first light of dawn.
The Glory of the Mistress Celene is new all week, leaving the sky to Luna which is full the night of the 18th of the Provisions. This night is sacred for Celestian's followers and always gives rise to a solemn mass. At the end of autumn, many travelers returned home to spend the winter, and this night provides a good opportunity to meet among explorers, especially to talk about the various trips made during the year.
Travels of the Far Wanderer is a 45-page book of aphorisms and devotionals to Celestian. An intricate star design has been worked into its leather cover.
Celestian encourages his followers to wander far from home, just as the stars do. Astrology is as much a part of Celestian's faith as astronomy is, and his worshippers are encouraged to discover the secrets within the patterns of the stars and other celestial bodies. Celestians are required to aid travelers in need, but are permitted to charge for their services.
Though Celestians must pledge to wander, they may remain in one place for decades without receiving more than a gentle chiding from Celestian priests. Priests are expected to take their oaths much more seriously.
Celestian often appears as a tall, lean man of middle years, wearing black garments set with his symbol, often worked in jewels (diamond, amethyst, sapphire, emerald, topaz, jacinth and ruby) that shine like distant suns. His smooth skin and his eyes are ebony. His voice is a cold and unearthly whisper, which carries well despite its softness, but he seldom speaks.
Relationships & History
Celestian is brother to Fharlanghn. It is said that the two followed similar but differing paths; where Fharlanghn chose to wander the wide world, Celestian chose the void of outer space and the Astral Plane. Celestian is allied with Zagyg, Keoghtom, Heward, and Murlynd, and is often found in their company.
Celestian's priests are disliked by followers of the Egyptian god Ptah, who envy their special abilities.
The souls of those who worshipped Celestian in life become the stars in his robes, and travel with him. When their wanderlust becomes so great that they want to travel on their own, they and Celestian become one. Some claim that the souls of Celestian's faithful are ranked by how many worlds they have traveled to, but this is not considered official doctrine.
According to legend, Celestian sent an enormous meteor hurtling toward the Oerth thousands of years ago. This celestial body buried itself miles beneath the surface somewhere in Western Oerik. The pulsing core of the meteorite has never cooled in the countless centuries since. This core is said to hold a priceless gift from the Far Wanderer, though the precise nature of this gift has not been agreed on. Some say it is the purest adamantine in the multiverse, while others say the gift is a deep philosophical truth.
The only way to reach Celestian's Gift is a narrow natural bridge deep within the Underdark. Monsters from across space and time are said to guard it.
Celestian is a tall, lean, middle-aged human man, wearing black garments set with his symbol, often worked in jewels that shine like distant suns. His smooth skin and his eyes are ebony.
Located far from the city, halfway up the mountain is a stone temple to Celestian. It is a sturdy tiered, three story structure with various balconies, all providing ample view of the skies. There are many windows, all with the shutters that are open. The entrances leads to an ante-chamber with marble floors, and a ceiling painted with a depiction of a starry night. Directly ahead is a large 40'x90' chancel with a 3 story high ceiling opened to the sky. You notice various tarps hanging above, that can probably be pulled closed to protect the interior from poor weather. Braziers line the walls, which are all painted with various constellations. Along the back is an altar, behind which is a 30' statue of Celestian looking upward. There are doorways to the left and right, leading deeper into the temple.
The priest of Celestian is a balding old man, with a cleanly shaven face and is wearing a crude set of magnified lenses connected with twisted wires over his eyes. He has on a dark blue robe, and a sapphire pendant hangs from a silver chain around his neck.