Author Topic: A Denouncement of the "False Ezra" and the "First Book of the Returned Ezra"  (Read 282 times)

emptyanima

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[The following is nailed to the announcement board in the Outskirts, where travellers and passersby may read it.]

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A Denouncement of the "False Ezra" and the "First Book of the Returned Ezra"
An Exhortation to Turn Away from Heresy and Embrace True Faith,
by
Rosaria Vescovi
Warden of Her First Revelation

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Blessed be Ezra, Our Guardian in the Mists. I pray for the wisdom to correctly and properly convey the error and spiritual hazard presented by the one who claims to be Ezra returned.

I address this denouncement to three parties;

First, to those of Ezrite faith.
Second, to those who find themselves swept up by this false teaching.
Third, to the Pretender herself.

While those who adhere to the teachings of the several Revelations of Ezra, Our Shield and Protector, differ on several points of doctrine, all are considered acceptable and of Ezra because they have passed the Rite of Revelation. This tripartite trial does, in one part, require the applicant to produce in writing their own Book of Revelation.

I intend to take this "First Book of the Returned Ezra", and through accepted doctrine and the illumination of true faith, show it for the heresy that it is. I have considered and prayed upon this matter. I know I take a risk in circulating it further, but I do so that I may fully and publicly dispute it.

The heretical text begins with the final two verses of the First Book of Ezra. These verses are not in question, for they are substantiated by the Rite of Revelation and supported by Ezrite doctrine. To note, however, the first portion is paraphrased, and excludes a portion of accepted text which would contradict the heresy that follows. Its absence is keenly felt. The heretical text begins thus;

"The Mists said to Ezra, 'You may not enter as you are." It then moves straight to Ezra's reply, "Such is my role in the Grand Scheme. So must it be."

In doing so, it leaves out the following;

Quote from: The First Book of Ezra, XVII
The Mists of Death fell silent. Then the Voice spoke once more. “Enter the Mists if You must, Mortal, but not as You are. Your kind has no place here. To enter the Mists, You must become as one with the Mists. Never again shall you leave them. Will You forever sacrifice Yourself to watch over these few mortals?”

It is more than mere omission. This heresy first prepares the duped believer's heart by ignoring the nature of Ezra's ascension unto her role as our Goddess and Guardian. It ignores the extent of her sacrifice, and why we call Her Our Guardian in the Mists. As mortals, moving through this Mist-bound Hollow, we search to mold the truth into a version that is simplified, and palatable for our mortal minds. We produce icons of Ezra as a woman, to focus our belief and remind ourselves that Our Guardian did at one time walk in the Hollow as we do.[1]  However, we know that these icons, and statues, and figures, are not truly Our Guardian, but serve to assist us in our worship of Her. To this point I shall return in a moment. I shall continue to examine the heretical text. It carries on;

"Ezra dwelled in the Mists for many years encountering their diabolic design. She protected Her people, and in time, she was victorious over the Mists."

This section alludes to a battle with the Mists that is not described elsewhere in accepted scripture. It is possible that this text confounds the Legions and the Mists themselves, believing them one and the same. This again points to a misunderstanding or subversion of Ezra's sacrifice. How does our Goddess fight the Mists if She is one with them? And more importantly, why would the Mists accept Ezra's ascension to Her role in the Grand Scheme, as our Protector, if such would open the door to their destruction? While Her Anchorites and Templars fight against the Legions, we accept that they fulfil their role within the Grand Scheme, as we do our own, and all that exists - we mortals, the Legions, and Ezra Herself, are bound by it.

The text continues,

"In the year 775, Ezra will emerge from the Mists to declare her victory over the horrors of the Mists. She will announce triumphantly that the lies the Mists spread about the Time of Unparalleled Darkness are in truth a renaissance of piety and faith."

Returning to my examination of the first part, this section again denies the manner of Ezrite's sacrifice and ascension to Her role as Our Guardian in the Mists. It also goes further in speaking against accepted church doctrine. The focus on her emergence requires me to return to the matter of iconography which I earlier discussed. It seems that the Pretender believes that the focus of our worship should be on the Ezra in mortal form, the woman, and not Ezra the Ascended, the Guardian in the Mists. It is clear from church doctrine and the words of revealed scripture that Ezra could not fill Her role in the Grand Scheme if she did not enter into them. Such was the nature of Her sacrifice, and we give thanks and praise for the salvation She offers through it.

The heretical text ends thus,

"Fall on your knees and worship the returned Ezra. She is worthy of your praise."

Only the true Ezra, revealed as she is in Scripture and the blessings she places upon Her Anchorites, is worthy of your praise. Do not fall upon your knees and endanger your soul in the worship of this heretic. Ezra does not need to return, because she has not left us. Her blessings and guidance continue.

To the faithful, fear not - you have the truth in your hearts and revealed in scripture. Be thankful and always wary of those who would twist and ignore true doctrine.

To those who believe this False Ezra, I pray that you are brought to true faith. Flee from this heretic before she corrupts your spirit and poisons your hearts against the truth.

To the Pretender, hear me well.

You shall not succeed in this mad quest. You shall never pass the Rite of Revelation. You shall never usurp the truth with your lies.
 1. While the First and Third differ upon Ezra's nature, with the First holding that She was a mortal, while the Third believes that She was ever a Goddess, she still 'descended to the Hollow' before becoming one with the Mists, so the fact of Ezra's entry of the Mists to fulfil Her role is never in dispute.

((Placed in-game, in part. Approved by DM Tenebris.))



emptyanima

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An Amendment and Conclusion
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2020, 07:08:53 PM »
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An Amendment and Conclusion to the Denouncement of the "False Ezra" and the "First Book of the Returned Ezra"
That the Life and Legacy of Warden Elena Colonna May Be Remembered in Truth,
by
Rosaria Vescovi
Warden of Her First Revelation
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Blessed be Ezra, Our Guardian in the Mists.

In prior days did I and my fellow Wardens, Acolytes, Initiates and laity speak against the spreading heresy concerning “Ezra” returned.

Yesternight did she find her final rest, having repented and atoned, her faith remembered in purity and wholeness. To my regret, I was not present, as I sought needed rest. All the words she heard from me were against the heresy I believed she penned.

I write here to amend and conclude my prior denouncement, that the truth of the matter, now known in its entirety, may be made clear.

I amend my assertion that she I named Pretender authored the heretical “First Book of the Returned Ezra” - we know now that she did not, for it was penned by another.

I amend my assertion that the spread of this heresy was her mad quest. That she wished to usurp the truth with lies. That she wished to attempt and pass the Rite of Revelation. These were not her wishes. Her mind, body and spirit were broken. The faith she held to so strongly was twisted and altered into heretical aberration over the passage of years.

Who was she?

She was Warden Elena Colonna of Levkarest, in Borca. In the year 735, she came to Barovia at the behest of Praesidius Alexei Raskolka. She was one of the first to bring the word of Our Guardian to this land. She was a woman of true, deep and abiding faith and courage, and an example we should remember and emulate ourselves, by Ezra’s grace.

How did she come to her terrible fate?

She was captured by a foul, faithless necromancer and tortured. Her suffering was incredible, beyond imagining, stretching over time unknown, until all that she was, all that she did, in faith throughout her life was shattered. As life left her, her thoughts were fixed upon Ezra. But through the evil wrought by this Legion, her suffering did not end there. All these years later she arose as one of the breathless, one of those she stood against in defence of the faithful, with “The First Book of the Returned Ezra” already placed in her hands. So twisted by the machinations of the necromancer, she believed herself to be Ezra.

But Ezra, that is, Our Guardian in the Mists, saw through what had been wrought by the Legions upon her loyal servant. She did not abandon her, as she abandons none of Her Faithful. It was for this reason, that Elena still could call upon Her blessings, and manifest Her shield.

Lost and wandering through darkness, Elena harmed and maimed. She spoke the incoherent blasphemous heresies that the necromancer wished her to speak. But this was not the truth in her heart.

I stood among Her Anchorites, Acolytes and laity as we spoke the truth to her. But she was accompanied by those who believed the lies she spoke, the lies she did not believe in her heart.

At the last, Elena came to the Refuge of the Fifth Light, the church which may not have been erected without the blessed work she did all those years ago, and she sought Her faithful to confront them. But they held fast to faith and hope, and with their words, by Ezra’s grace, did the scales fall from Elena’s eyes.

She remembered the truth. She remembered the pain she had suffered, the horrors wrought upon her, and those that she wrought while her mind had been twisted. She sought atonement. She repented. She was, after so many years, the same Elena who had served so faithfully. Ezra did not forsake her. She worked, as she ever does, through the blessings she places upon Her Anchorites. She has brought Her faithful servant, Her martyr, home into Her eternal embrace.

May we remember Elena as that faithful servant, that martyr of the truth. May we seek to follow the example of her endurance, her dutifulness, and above all her faith.

May Our Guardian bless Her Anchorites and Her faithful with such devotion as she blessed Warden Elena Colonna.

So let it be.
Amen.

((Placed in game.))