ANDO PRIME SYSTEM
The sun is called Ando, and its only planet is Ando Prime. A belt of asteroids called the Band of Sish forms a rocky band around the sun in a close and speedy orbit. This orbit closes in on the sun a little bit each year, and the Priests of Ando Prime say that when the Band of Sish closes around Ando...the end of all will have arrived. Ando Prime on the otherhand is at a very distant orbit...and suffers from intense cold year-round as a result. It is here on this icy mountainous planet that the ancient religion makes its home. They believe in and worship an almost forgotten pantheon of gods, and though these Monks are viewed with respect throughout Sector 42, they are seen as a bit odd. They are known for their martial arts skill as well as their powerful chanting, which some claim to be the voice of the gods themselves. These Monks seek no recruits, but year after year unsought recruits scrape together enough money to travel to Ando Prime and join the small order. Occasionally a powerful family will give the youngest brother to the order to prevent future infighting in the family. The Jedi are more than willing to coexist with this ancient religion, and Jedi Lords have decreed that it is not heresy...nor dangerous to accept advice or help from the Monks of Ando-Prime.
THE PRIESTS OF ANDO PRIME...AND HE WHO SLUMBERS
Ando-Prime is a mountain-crusted frozen planet, and the only inhabitants are religious monks living in isolated and simple monastaries. They believe in an ancient pantheon of gods that has fallen from the memories of men. In the beginning there was Mana-Yood-Sushai. Mana-Yood-Sushai was everything and nothing...and for reasons long forgotten he created the small gods...Mung and Sish and Kib, and many others. When he was done creating, he grew weary, and needful of rest. The small gods set about creating everything that we know as the world around us, and all the while Mana-Yood-Sushai slept. It is said that one day Mana-Yood-Sushai will forget to rest, and will stir from his near infinite slumber. On that day who is to say whether he will become enraged or perhaps amused with what the small gods have created. What is certain is that Mana-Yood-Sushai with just the whisper of a thought will wipe away the creations of the small gods, and then turn his devestating attentions to the small gods themselves. All the gods, the worlds, and men will depart, and there will be only Mana-Yood Sushai.
When Mana-Yood-Sushai created the small gods and Skarl, Skarl built a drum so that he could beat upon it forever. His creator grew drowsy and fell into deep infinite slumber. The small gods saw that Mana-Yood-Sushai slept and all was silent except for the drumming of Skarl. Skarl sat upon the mist before the feet of Mana-Yood-Sushai and there he beat his drum. The small gods went about their play, creating the worlds and men, but still Skarl did beat upon his drum. Skarl's arm sometimes grows weary, but he continues to beat his drum, for it is said that if Skarl should stop his song upon the drum, Mana-Yood-Sushai will start awake and there will be gods and worlds and men no more. When this happens, Skarl will place his drum upon his back and walk forward into the void...for it will be THE END. Skarl will not care, for he will have done the work of Skarl.
When the small gods were made they sat in the silence and feared to speak, for the sound might wake Mana-Yood-Sushai. The began to speak with their hands, one to the other, and they said, "Let us make worlds to fill the time...Life and Death...heat, and light, and sound...colors in the sky...to amuse ourselves from now until Mana wakes and dismantles that which we create. They created flaming comets so that man in seeing the comet fly would know that another also seeks answers without ever finding. They created moons to watch man, and the World to wonder for him.
A million years passed over the first game of the gods, and the gods still played with worlds, the bright fire-tail still sought without finding, the moons watched, and the worlds wondered. Then Kib grew weary of the first game, and he raised his hands and made the sign of Kib, and the worlds were covered with beasts for Kib to play with. The gods said amonst themselves, talking with hands, what has Kib done? If he has made beasts, he will eventually make men, and they will threaten the secrets of the gods. And Mung was jealous and sent death to the worlds among the beasts. Death swept through the beasts, but he could not wipe them out.
Kib became bored with the second game of the gods, and once again made the sign of Kib, and the worlds were covered with men. The gods feared greatly for the secrets of the gods and set a veil of ignorance between themselves and man so that he might never understand. And now Mung was busy among men. But the other gods saw Kib's game, and they thought, we shall play this game too until Mana-Yood-Sushai awakes and all is ended. They shall play until Mana shall arise to rebute them, saying, "What do ye playing with Worlds and Suns and Men and Life and Death?" And they shall be ashamed. It was Kib who first broke the silence of the gods, opening his mouth and speaking in the manner of men. The other gods were angry, but the silence had been broken.
Time is the hound of Sish. At Sish's bidding do the hours run before him as he goeth upon his way. Never hath Sish stepped backward nor ever hath he tarried. Before Sish is Kib, and behind him goeth Mung. Very pleasant are all things before the face of Sish, but behind him they are withered and old. Time is the hound of the gods, but it hath been said of old that he will one day turn upon his masters, and seek to slay the gods, excepting only Mana-Yood-Sushai, whose dreams are the gods themselves-dreamed long ago.
Slid said, "Let no man pray to Mana-Yood-Sushai, for who shall trouble the rest of Mana with mortal woes or irk him with the sorrows of all the houses of Earth? Pray to the small gods who are the gods of Doing, and not to Mana, who is the god of Having Done." Slid is the Lord of the gliding waters and of the foaming waters and of the still. And Slid said that if man prays to the small gods, Slid will bring Death to man when he is most in need of it....
Further Details: And there are tons of other gods...and perhaps we will add more to this as time goes on. It depends on whether we run out of religious gods and stories to quote! I have based this religion on The Gods of Pagana by Lord Dunsany.
It is a simple pantheon...and the Monks of Ando Prime spend large amounts of time beating thunderous rhythmic drums in the assistance of Skarl. They learn the arts of defense and battle so that they man do the work of Kib when need be, and the work of Mung when need be. They study to strengthen the power of their minds so that one day their spirit will flow through the veil of ignorance placed between man and god at the beginning of the third game of the gods. The Monks of Ando Prime feel that a powerful mind will flow with unstopable strength towards the infinite power of the gods...much like a powerful stream guided by Slid cannot be stopped from reaching the vastness of the sea. The Monks live isolated quiet lives of dedication to the goal of helping Skarl beat the drums that lull from Mana-Yood-Sushai his infinite rest. For with Mana waking...the worlds, the gods, and man will seek to be in the withering laughter of Mana-Yood-Sushai's rebukes!
The Monks religion pre-dates the Jedi's of the White Tower, and their worship of the Force. The Monks make no judgement about how other men worship...and thus they ARE NOT JUDGEMENTAL IN REGARD TO ANYTHING THAT IS NOT HARMFUL. They do not tolerate men performing the tasks of Mung (death/killing) when it is not necessary. They very infrequently leave Ando Prime.
All the Monks of Ando Prime have scarred skin on their face and hands from the intense cold of the planet. They often wear their hair long, older ones grow long thick beards, while the newer Monks have clean-shaven faces. Some of the Monks choose to be heavily tattoo'd in order to decorate and hide their scars. They wear primitive armor types, and the weapons they train with are fairly old-fashioned.