2E Rabbi as a class/kit? - Page 2
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  1. #11
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    Pretty much any clergy is more like a background, being a skill set.

    Knowledge skills (history, religion, arcana as mysticism), social skills (empathy, persuasion, intimidation), magical talents (bless, augury, healing, guidance)

    Peoples most commonly expressed needs are: belonging, relationship, family wellbeing, finances, physical health, spiritual seeking, meaning, ethical advice, adjudication of disputes, joy and fun.

    A rabbi will tend to be competent in several of these areas.

    There is something like a minor wish. Something that is truly needed shows up in a serendipitous synchronicitous way, say within a day, week, or month.

    As a rule, Judaism tends to view humans as needing to do all of the effort while the Divine does all of the success or failure of that effort. So, praying for something for free is a waste of time, albeit in an emergency there might be intervention. The ultimate goal is to do good things, and to help others do good things. Science and medicine are holy because they are a human effort that can be used to do good things. When a miracle does happen, it is to empower persons to do good for others.

    This background is in addition to whatever class the rabbi chooses. One rabbi can be very different from an other rabbi.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by abe ray View Post
    How would you fine people build a Jewish rabbi as a character class or cleric kit? I figured that at the least the rabbi should be able to create golems earlier in level than normal & be able to control same.
    It was written for 3.0, but the Book "Testament" by Scott Bennie is all about roleplaying in the biblical era. It has the Levite Priest and The Psalmist core classes, and it has the Judge and Prophet as prestige classes. The book also covered other areas of the biblical world too, with appropriate classes for those regions.

    It can be mined, out-right converted for 2e, or provide you with a starting point to making your own variations with very little effort.

    And if you like the book, there were several supporting products for it as well!

    You can pick up a digital PDF copy here: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product...e-Biblical-Era
    Last edited by digitalelf; Friday, 7th June, 2019 at 07:11 AM.

  3. #13
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    A 1e title so awesome it's not in the book (Lvl 21)



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    Crusades book has Christianity and Islam in it, might be worth a look for ideas.

  4. #14
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    Ars Magica has a book, Kabbalah: Mythic Judaism. It seems a decent presentation.

  5. #15
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    [coding difficulties]
    Last edited by Yaarel; Friday, 7th June, 2019 at 11:36 PM.

  6. #16
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    I would go with Rabbi as a background. Rabbis can be very different from each other. Some Rabbis are scientists (Wizard), some are soldiers (Fighter), some are artists (Bard), some are healers (Cleric).

    The mystics in particular seem a case that is simultaneously Divine and Psionic. The endeavor is to ‘unite’ and ‘adhere’ the mind of a human with the mind of Divinity.

    Jewish mysticism is remarkably complex and tends to be written in Bible-alluding parables.

    The word ‘spirit’ (Ruakh) has many meanings depending on context. The spirit of a human is the same thing as a mind, including the intellect and the emotions, the inner life and influence of a particular person. The soul or rather ‘lifeforce’ (Nefesh) of a person has levels. The lifeforce itself is an animalistic sensorial lifeforce, while the spirit is the humanistic level above it. By studying the Bible and those discussing the Bible, the person attunes their spirit and lifeforce with the mind of Divinity.

    Really, everything is made out of the Infinite Light (Or En Sof) of Divinity, what moderns would describe as the universe being made out of energy. But the mystics understand this energy to also be conscious. Thus the universe is made out of Divine consciousness as an aspect of Divine energy. An individual human consciousness is a ‘piece’ of the Divine consciousness, except the rest of the infinite Divinity is ‘hidden’. So from the perspective of the human, this consciousness only perceives partially via the senses of the human. (Compare Hinduism, where the Atman is a finite human consciousness, and the Brahman is the infinite Divine consciousness, and the insight is, both are the same consciousness.) One Jewish mystic describes the Divine consciousness like a ‘mountain’, and the human consciousness like a ‘rock’ that is ‘carved’ from this mountain. So that the rest of the mountain is hidden from this rock.

    The highest aspects of the Divine that are hidden from humans are the Divine ‘intellect’ (Sekhel), including the aspects of ‘Wisdom’, ‘Understanding’, and ‘Knowledge’. Together, these are sometimes referred to as the ‘brains’ (Mokhin) of the Divinity. Analogous to how the brains of a human are ‘hidden’ from other observers, these aspects of the Divinity are also hidden from this world.

    The goal of the Jewish mystic is to attune ones own mindful spirit with the mindful Divinity. In this way, the human becomes aware of even higher levels of ones own lifeforce, namely ones ‘consciousness’ (Nshama) that is continually in the presence of the Light of the Divinity. The consciousness is the level of the lifeforce above the spirit. A friend of mine (the altruistic memory of her be for a blessing) describes this consciousness best. ‘The Nshama is the best version of ourself.’ There are even higher aspects a human lifeforce, but these lack a sense of self, being a consciousness of the entire universe, and ultimately never separating from the Infinity of the Divine Light.

    In D&D terms, Jewish mysticism is especially ‘psionic’. Traditions about mystics include psionic abilities such as telepathy and prescience.

    The tradition about the golem is a kind of psionic ‘Awaken’ spell, where in a more scientific mood, this particular rabbi was said to successfully imbue a ‘lump’ (Golem) of dirt with lifeforce. But it was only the animalistic level of the lifeforce, and lacked the human level. The purpose of this effort was to save the lives of his community who were in great danger. So the miracle functioned to do good for others. The animalistic aspect of the golem successfully saved these human lives. But afterward, lacking humanity, the golem proved dangerous to these human lives.

    A Psion with a Rabbi background is appropriate to represent certain Jewish mystics, especially if psionic healing is possible. A Cleric with a psionic domain might also work.

    I wrote the following in an other thread referring to how D&D can represent monotheism generally, including Christianity and Islam, but it applies here too.

    Essentially, the Plane of Positive Energy is the conscious Infinite Light pouring into the creation of the Material Plane. The Rabbi is in this material world and engages the Positivity directly and immediately. All the other planes of existence are irrelevant to the Rabbis personal relationship with Light.

    "
    For the sake of translating concepts into D&D.

    Monotheists consider the Light of the Positive Plane to be the Creator of the Material Plane − and all planes. Anything that exists is itself made out of positivity, being shaped by the positivity. Monotheists serve the positive Light exclusively as sacred. The Light created the Negative Plane by ‘hiding’, in order to create the possibility of darkness in the Material Plane. Within the dark material, humans gain the opportunity to personally reveal and increase Light, thus illuminating the Material Plane. Thus humans become co-creators who decide the shape of the Material Plane. [These monotheists] believe a future will come when the Material Plane is fully luminous with the Light of Positive Plane. In those days, humans will be deathless, and painless.

    "

    The Light of Divinity fulfills the desires of humans, by means of compassion and justice. Likewise, humans become the windows of Light when they reveal Divine Light, by fulfilling the desires of other humans, by means compassion and justice. These physical actions − these good deeds − are HOW a human unites with the Infinite Light.

  7. #17
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    Great thread. I will second the testament from the 3rd edition era. Great source.

  8. #18
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    I'm sorry, but all I can picture is Rabbi Tuckman from Robin Hood- Men in Tights. I wont make the quotes.

  9. #19
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    Well, for several months now I've been planning that my next PC be a dwarf cleric named Rabbi Stone. Mostly just for fitting with an atypical accent. I'm not intending to play him for comedy as such, but he'll SOUND like Mel Brooks/Billy Crystal/Gene Wilder as a dwarf cleric. Maybe even a little Mandy Patinkin. Not yet knowing what setting or even edition he'll land in, much less what pantheon, I can't narrow down the concept much more than that. I figure it'll also be a natural follow-up to my current diviner wizard character Ali Ar-Caelo Al-Allam.

    But no special rules though. He's still going to be just a D&D cleric and doesn't need to be made any more or less like a real-world Jewish rabbi mechanically.

  10. #20
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    What sort of Kabbalist style golems could be created besides clay?

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