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Austrism

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Austrism
Related to Idris
World Nalthis
Featured In Warbreaker

Austrism is a religion often worshipped by the Idrian people on Nalthis. In it, people worship a god named Austre. He is often called "God of Colors".[1]

Austre is usually referred to with a male pronoun. Before the Manywar and the exile of the Royal family, people of Hallandren also used to worship him.[2]

Teachings[edit]

According to the Austrism, Austre commands the Returned to come back to life, and gives Breath to humanity.

The fundamental tenets of the religion are called the Five Visions.[3] These are the visions had by Vo, the First Returned, before he died.[4]

One of the Visions includes the following line:

I saw men who placed themselves above others, and I saw them cast down
—A quote from one of Vo's Five Visions[3]

The Visions teach the virtues of humility, sacrifice and seeing another's problems before your own.[5] They teach that no man man should try to put oneself above the others, and that Austre regards all people equally.[6]

Acting ostentatiously, rejecting people because of their sins and flaunting one's talents were seen as sins.[6][4]

Austrin teachings also say there was nothing wrong with feelings, but drawing attention to yourself with them is wrong.[1]

Austrism, as practiced by Idrians considers Breaths to be intimately linked to the human souls. For that reason Austre followers consider holding the Breaths of others to be a sin, and using them to Awaken to be an even greater sin. However, Vasher states that such intolerance toward Awakening only emerged after the Manywar.[5]

Monks[edit]

Monks of Austrism (also called Idrian monks) are supposed to be the most pious and least ostentatious of Idrians.[7] They are required to shear their hair off and to wear white robes.[8] It is seen as a duty in Idris to provide at least one child for the monasteries (especially among noble or rich families), as it is against the Five Visions to be selfish, even with their own blood.[8] Idrian monks do not get locked in a monastery--they can leave at any time[7]--and they provide services for the needy in Idris.

Brandon designed the monks to have duties which were not very religious, and instead were supposed to act as servants to the kingdom's poor in a very formalized way.[9] For example, if a man breaks his leg and can't work, a monk will take his place in the job. Occasionally, if a father dies and can't support his family, a monk is permanently assigned to his place at work and provides for that man's family.

Monks are forbidden to own or possess anything themselves, and give everything they have to the people.[9] Without the pressure to feed themselves or acquire goods, some monks can be a little lazy. However, many are very diligent, such as Fafen.[8]

Quotes[edit]

Flowers ain't evil, assuming they're left where Austre put them. We shouldn't use Austre's beauty to make ourselves more important.
Mab to Siri [1]
In the distance, she could see the plateau that held the Court of Gods, the most profane place beneath Austre's colorful eyes.
Vivenna travelling in T'Telir [10]

Notes[edit]

  1. a b c Warbreaker chapter 1
  2. Warbreaker chapter 15
  3. a b Warbreaker chapter 13
  4. a b Warbreaker chapter 20
  5. a b Warbreaker chapter 40
  6. a b Warbreaker chapter 19
  7. a b Warbreaker chapter 44
  8. a b c Warbreaker chapter 2
  9. a b Annotation for Warbreaker chapter 3-2
  10. Warbreaker chapter 9
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