Old Version of Yemaja

Bright-Eyed; Sea Mother; Silver Dolphin

Symbol: A silver dolphin
Home Plane: Elemental Plane of Water
Alignment: Neutral Good
Cleric Alignments: Any good
Portfolio: Pure and healing water, refreshment, rejuvenation, the bounty of the seas
Worshipers: Fisherfolk and sailors, shipbuilders, widows and widowers, good and neutral sea creatures
Domains: Good, Healing (Restoration), Ocean, Renewal, Repose, Water
Favored Weapon: Net

Physical Description:
Yemaja is the embodiment of all that is good about the seas, a living representation of its bounties and beauties. She most often appears as a dolphin with shimmering silver skin and bright, expressive eyes like stars. Yemaja is also known to take the form of a beautiful, dark-skinned woman or mermaid, though her eyes are still bright like stars.

Description of Nature, Personality, and Dogma:
A kind and gentle healer and soother of hurts, Yemaja is an embodiment of the calm and healing nature of water, and of its endless bounty. She is generous to a fault, only kept from helping mortals more by the laws that govern the gods, and is constantly concerned with the health and happiness of her followers.

To the worshipers of Yemaja, the sea is a place to cherished and appreciated, rather than a treasure to be looted or hoarded. As such, those who follow her treat sea life with a healthy measure of respect, while still being allowed to take enough to make a livelihood. She protects all those that travel the waves, and dolphins are especially sacred to her, so fisherfolk wishing to retain her favor do their best not to hurt dolphins, and to free them quickly from their nets should they become entangled. Cruel pirates are not tolerated, however, and she and her clergy have an especial hatred of those who ply their living through works of evil on the seas.

Clergy, Places of Worship, Important Rituals, and Servitor Races:
Yemaja's clergy favor dark blue and silver garb. Her clergy are usually those who have lost loved ones to the sea after finding the comfort that she offers, often after a visit from dolphins, merfolk, or selkies. With experience in what it means to lose someone, they are active in grief counseling, and also in ensuring that ships are safe, both in their construction and also when they travel. Many ships consider it essential to have a cleric of Yemaja aboard for safety's sake. Her temples are usually lighthouses with domed tops, with the paths to safe harbors often clearly marked with magical light. Building good, strong vessels is a sacred act for those who worship Yemaja, and one of the most important rituals her clergy perform is the breaking of a bottle of blessed alcohol against the side of a ship before her maiden voyage. A holy day for Yemaja is the first day of fishing season, whenever that takes place in a given part of the world. On that day, all other activities stop, and everyone goes to the docks to bid their loved ones going to sea farewell and to pray to Yemaja for her protection and for success.

Selkies, merfolk, aquatic elves, and all dolphins revere Yemaja, as do a vast host of other good-aligned creatures of the sea, and most neutral ones as well.

History and Relations:
Once Matra herself filled the role which Yemaja now fills. However, Matra found that she did not have the depth of tender compassion that she felt was needed for the role of tending to the needs of the vulnerable folk and creatures that make their living from the seas with respect for her creations and doing their best to maintain harmony. Then, as she cast her thoughts around, not long after humans had begun to populate Therafim, Matra's attention fell on a mortal woman, Yemaja. Yemaja had lost her husband in a storm at sea, and, in defiance of the traditions of her people that did not allow women on board ships, took his place, posing as a young man to do so so as to feed her starving family. She demonstrated great talent as a healer and a comforter of those in need after a hard skirmish with pirates that injured many of her crewmates, and her charisma bolstered those who survived to muster the strength needed to return home once more. Before they reached home, however, they were attacked once more by pirates, and this time they were captured and Yemaja's true nature revealed. Before anything further could happen, however, Yemaja flung herself into the waves, and was immediately turned into a shining silver dolphin. Joined by other dolphins, she and her new finned friends capsized the pirate's vessel, saving the rest of the crew. Yemaja then swam off into the horizon and towards her destiny as the new deity of the waves, while her crew, on returning home, ensured that her family received her share of their profits.

Leviathan and Yemaja share mastery of the seas, with Leviathan concerning himself with deeper water and Yemaja with the shallows, and they maintain a good friendship. Though she is the youngest of the elemental powers, Yemaja is infused with a portion of Matra's own power and ageless wisdom, and that makes her a match even for one as mighty as ages-old Leviathan, sufficient that Leviathan respects Yemaja, and they regularly give each other advice. Swarm and Lugscar's followers regularly try to use, abuse, and despoil Yemaja's realm just as they try to do with all other places and peoples, and so she has no tolerance for these deities or their worshipers, and regularly calls on the aid of Leviathan and Chekari to quell their ambitions. Chekari, incidentally, is also a good friend of Yemaja. The Thunderbird regularly attempts to flirt with Yemaja and take their relationship to a more serious level, but Yemaja manages to flirt right back without giving away anything, keeping Chekari constantly fascinated with and captivated by her, but also occasionally driving him mad with desire, leading to especially furious storms. Phoenix and Yemaja have a relationship that can best be described as love at first sight. They are both passionately - some would say madly - in love with each other, but each feels the love is forbidden in nature, and while they dearly wish to act on what they feel, the physical limitations of their respective environments and their respective senses of duty have, thus far, prevented them from doing so.

Favored Offerings and Justifications for Direct Intervention:
Offerings commonly given up to Yemaja include clear alcohols, and bright silver and blue jewelry. These are offered by giving them to the waves, either dropping them in or letting them float out to sea on little boats of driftwood or paper. Making little boats of paper and putting candles in or on them before letting them drift out to sea is the most common offering the Yemaja, and also a way to remember loved ones lost to the waves or lovers kept apart by unfortunate circumstances, just as Phoenix and Yemaja are kept apart, the fire unable to touch the water without being extinguished.

Yemaja is not allowed to interfere too frequently with mortal affairs, or else she would ensure that every honest sailor and fisherfolk who fell overboard in a storm was borne back to shore on the backs of dolphins, and no pirate would ever sail in safety. But there are other gods to consider, and so Yemaja is forced to be more selective in he direct aid. Good fishing, of course, is a common and not too onerous use of Yemaja's favor, provided that the fisherfolk who receive such blessings treat the sea and its life with respect, do not overfish, and make sure to give Leviathan his due as well. The prayers and offerings of the spouses and lovers of those at sea are especially precious to Yemaja, and she regularly does her best to ensure that these people have special protection and good luck whenever possible, provided that she is shown the proper respect and veneration to allow her to act. Protection from pirates and the evil denizens of the deep is also known to be among the things Yemaja provides as often as she can, though she cannot use such privileges over the waves and things that live on and in them too frequently for fear of infringing on the free will of mortals.