Xanthar The Brave
Imperial Death Rites
An extract from the blasphemous liturgies of Kitra the Liar:
And so these souls of Imperial men and women, forever bound to our lands by the earth’s cool embrace, will continue to watch over and serve the Empire and its people even in death, such is the love of our Empire that we should all keep in our hearts. And the collective will of these ghosts of the Imperials who came before us, that is what we call Dei.
Man is made up of two domains, body and soul, opposite in each and every characteristic. The body is temporal where the spirit is eternal, manifold where spirit is indivisible and corporeal where spirit is intangible. However the two are also intrinsically linked, even beyond death. This is why the body must be cared for and returned to the earth from whence it was formed, for the Empire should be home to all its citizens and not abandon its dead.
The Funeral Rites are for the benefit of the living before the dead, who are beyond the concerns of the mortal plane. It gives the friends and family the opportunity to accept and move past the deceased, under the spiritual guidance of one of the Emperor’s priests.
It is the duty of the clergy to tend to their graveyards and ensure that the dead are not disturbed by beast or man, for they have earned their peace in life. On the Night of Shades, the Graveyard is closed to all but Imperial priests who, clothed in robes of black, will lay holly on the graves and give a sermon to the empty graveyard. The origins of this tradition are unknown.
For those whose crimes against the Empire are too heinous to forgive, there is a punishment above all else: The Rite of Exile. The body of the heretic is burnt upon a pyre of foreign wood, severing any and all ties to the Empire. No prayers are said for the deceased, for they are not worthy of the Emperor’s Words.