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Pathfinder 2E Paizo drops use of the word phylactery

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Argyle King

Legend
Yeah, the "what about golems!" argument falls flat for me for a few main reasons:
1. It's a "whataboutism" fallacy meant to make people scared of an imaginary slippery slope.
2. Golems aren't evil in D&D/Pathfinder, they're mindless constructs that serve their master.
3. They're fairly close to the source material (at least the Clay Golem is).
4. Golems aren't a major part of the modern Jewish religion. Tefillin are. At least, in the sense that people today do wear tefillin, but golems aren't a thing that people make. It's the same reason why I'm fine with including Satyrs, Centaurs, Minotaurs, Angels, and Demons in D&D and Pathfinder, but not so comfortable with Lich Phylacteries, gods that are still being worshipped today, and other parts of real world cultures/religions.

I'm of the impression that "angels" are part of a real-world religion being practiced today.

I think it's fair to say that it's part of the same faith which features "phylacteries."

Either way doesn't particularly bother me. Pathfinder 2 is barely on my radar as a game.

Was there outcry from members of the Jewish community concerning the term?
 

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I'm of the impression that "angels" are part of a real-world religion being practiced today.

I think it's fair to say that it's part of the same faith which features "phylacteries."

I mean, are angels being used in an explicitly evil context in the same way "phylacteries" are being used?

Either way doesn't particularly bother me. Pathfinder 2 is barely on my radar as a game.

Was there outcry from members of the Jewish community concerning the term?

I mean, you can read their own statement on the matter.
 

Argyle King

Legend
I mean, are angels being used in an explicitly evil context in the same way "phylacteries" are being used?



I mean, you can read their own statement on the matter.

To the first part: that depends on how you look at it. "Evil?" Not usually, but possibly if you're playing D&D 4th Edition. My personal view would be "no." However, I also lived through a period of time during which D&D was viewed as sacrilegious and profane due to including certain elements. So, while I personally think it's odd, I could see someone finding the use of angels (as portrayed in D&D or Pathfindet) as offensive to their faith.

To the second part: I could, but I likely won't.
 

Hex08

Hero
Either way doesn't particularly bother me. Pathfinder 2 is barely on my radar as a game.

Was there outcry from members of the Jewish community concerning the term?
I'm with you on this one. I find I don't care since I only play 1st edition and will likely never play Pathfinder 2
 

To the first part: that depends on how you look at it. "Evil?" Not usually, but possibly if you're playing D&D 4th Edition. My personal view would be "no." However, I also lived through a period of time during which D&D was viewed as sacrilegious and profane due to including certain elements. So, while I personally think it's odd, I could see someone finding the use of angels (as portrayed in D&D or Pathfindet) as offensive to their faith.

I don't really see the similarities between being self-conscious of the sources you draw upon and a moral panic where people think your game is causing people to turn to Satan.

But again, we get another slippery slope argument and no affirmative argument for the word.

To the second part: I could, but I likely won't.

Hey, then it's on you and not them.
 

Hussar

Legend
To the first part: that depends on how you look at it. "Evil?" Not usually, but possibly if you're playing D&D 4th Edition. My personal view would be "no." However, I also lived through a period of time during which D&D was viewed as sacrilegious and profane due to including certain elements. So, while I personally think it's odd, I could see someone finding the use of angels (as portrayed in D&D or Pathfindet) as offensive to their faith.

To the second part: I could, but I likely won't.
But angels aren't actually specific to any one faith. There are angels in many faiths, other than Christian. It's not like the notion of angel is all that specific. And, again, with a couple of notable exceptions, angels are depicted as they generally appear in most religions - emissaries of gods and mostly emissaries of gods of good, fighting the good fight against the forces of evil.

Again, it's not ONLY using elements from someone's culture that is a problem. It's using that element, and then spinning it around 180 degrees.
 

Their statement is certainly causing more harm than good. They had a problem with phylacteries and decided to drop the word. Their goal would have been achieved if they just wrote "soul cage" in their upcoming Book of the Dead, without tweeting about it. The controversy stemmed not from the change (that will happen in a few months) but from the tweet. I don't see the point of communicating, since it's akin of tweeting "we've decided to wash our hands before taking popcorn from a communal bowl", certainly a good idea but not something you claim proudly to do... And since the goal wasn't to react to outside pressure or create outside pressure, but just an editorial and creative decision from them, so not something that important that couldn't wait for the book release, I don't see the point of the putting their decision in the spotlight, sparking the controversy we see here.

I mean, are angels being used in an explicitly evil context in the same way "phylacteries" are being used?

Angels serving polytheistic, non-true gods is quite a subversion. The bible mentions other gods being worshipped (though, for obvious reasons, it's not central) but they don't have angels. While angels exist in several religions, all of them refer to the same god ; it's not like angel is a generic term for messengers of any god, as we usually don't call Iris the angel of Zeus, for example. Whether it is more or less a subversion is left as an exercise for the reader and depends certainly heavily on the individual appreciation.
 
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Argyle King

Legend
But angels aren't actually specific to any one faith. There are angels in many faiths, other than Christian. It's not like the notion of angel is all that specific. And, again, with a couple of notable exceptions, angels are depicted as they generally appear in most religions - emissaries of gods and mostly emissaries of gods of good, fighting the good fight against the forces of evil.

Again, it's not ONLY using elements from someone's culture that is a problem. It's using that element, and then spinning it around 180 degrees.

The concept of trapping a soul isn't unique to one faith either. The words used to describe the concept are just different -just like the words used to describe the concept of an angel change in other faiths.

I'm not opposed to the change. I can understand how it could cause offense.

But I'm not someone who was opposed to the use of the word as a shorthand way to describe a concept using real-world references either.
 


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