Divine/ Spirit
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Condition: Normal
ID: 2277


March 26, 2007, 1:28 pm

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Mathom, the God of Delays


Mathom, the God of Delays, is an overlooked but powerful entity. Few worship him, but many remember him with word and deed.

(Thanks go to Dragon Lord who helped to grow a joke into a full submission with his ideas and inspiration.)

To his worshippers, Mathom is the god of the proper moment, of the inevitability of time, but also of its mercy. To the rest of population, it is an annoying god barely worth speaking of.

Admittably, it is mentioned now and then in the speech of the people, “Mathom’s Work” or “Mathom’s Helper” speak about labour (or its worker) being too late for some petty reason.

The Gospel:

Mathom is here for all of us. Unfortunately, he has some pressing business at the moment, but fear not: he will come and save us. It is only by his power that the Final Hour has not yet come. (Insert a fitting apocalyptic belief, best one shared with other priesthoods.)

Mathom is the essence of the right moment, of the care one must give to important matters - nothing that really counts was finished on time. So take the time and care and love necessary… and it may be finished someday.

The Priesthood:

Many seek to avoid His attention. Some would call Him upon their neighbours or rivals. And a few - like prisoners sentenced to death - beg for His intervention on their behalf.

But very few have the potential to become a priest of Mathom. These are the carriers of His power, and sometimes they can impart His blessings with their mere presence; it is like an aura of chaos that permeats their life and impacts the lives of the people around. They may not do it consciously, it could be just a side effect of their great powers.

Their magic is able to delay events, or call upon the powers of fate and chance to create new events that will constitue a delay.

Similarly, people around them have a hard time doing anything on time, for it is perilously easy to find a reason why not to do what they have put on their mind.

The priesthood is a very loose organisation; while they do have great plans on enlightening the masses, sadly they do not come around to realising them, hindered by their own powers.

Still, a priest can be persuaded to help a noble cause (or in some cases, with a suitably large donation). Most of them are calm, well-meaning people that are used to a LOT of waiting.

Public opinions:

It has to be admitted that they can be annoying. While getting around to use violence against this priest is hard enough, there exist horror stories of the terrible curse for those foolish enough to kill a priest of Mathom. A violent death of this kind of priest is rare indeed… even rarer than for another religions.

Other priesthoods, of course, claim it is a fake god, and could eradicate the cult easily… they just have always more important things to do.

The general approach is to ignore them and stay at distance. However, there are stories of smart heroes that could delay whole armies by putting a powerful priest in their way, buying enough time for organising defense. (Like the one of an army wanting to kill a few cows for lunch: not loosing any time, the general just ordered the archers to shoot them for practice. Being hit into their behind, the cows got mad and wracked the whole army camp, with horses that panicked and ruined many wagons, and fire getting out of hand. It cost them a whole day and later the entire battle. The story is silly, but loved by the simple folk, occassionaly played by amateur actors, along with “Moooh!” sounds it makes everone laugh.)

True nature

This deity can seem incredibly powerful. He could stop almost anything just by “delaying it for a day or two”. Pity he doesn’t find the time to take the world’s matters into his own hands. Lack of time perhaps.

Maybe he was cursed by other gods. Being afraid of his great power (in whatever domain), they have just cursed him to never find the time to do something right. His curse has become his new domain. Who knows… maybe it was the head of the pantheon, The Creator Of Everything. But then there was a coup.

Alternatively, maybe he wasn’t a god to start with, but a mortal who learned how to break the links between the mundane and divine. Cursed by the very gods that wished to hinder this, he is stuck somewhere in the place between mortality and godhood. And since he stays there, nobody can cross it, or would meet him and be delayed, too.

Roleplaying use

Need to delay the villain from taking on the world? Just get a priest (which is not as easy as it sounds) and there you go! His powers (or the mere presence) will frustrate anything that should be finished on time.

Then, with the villain delayed, the crafty heroes set out to defeat him. But first they have to gather all their supplies, solve all kinds of minor problems that crop up, renew their adventuring permit that has run out, etc. etc. etc.

(And now, just imagine the villain would do the same to you. Or worse… make the villain a priest of Mathom.)

Shortly: a priest of Mathom is a potent tool; at least until you try to use it. ;)

Final note:

This is Mathom. A great power limited by its own nature. Have fun with him, but beware his blessing.

Additional Ideas (1)

Ye Boke of Ye Blessynges of Mathom
This rather lengthy text contains the collected sermons of the self-appointed "Patriarch of Mathom", Saint Ferdric the Sluggish. This decrepit wise man spent many years wandering from village to village, expounding on the need for all things to happen in their own, appropriate time. While the elderly sage’s odd views brought him into conflict with civil and religious authorities in several lands and he was eventually arrested, the magistrates never found the time to try him on the charges. Local legend says that on the day when the Blessed Ferdric passed away, his fellow prisoners were able to walk right out of the dungeon that held them, for the rusted-out bars of their cell had not been repaired on schedule.

The text itself is very disorganized, for many of the individual sermons within were never completed. It appears that Saint Ferdric intended to revise the sermons and organize them properly, but passed away before this task was completed. After his death, his acolytes respectfully decided to keep everything as the saint had originally written it.

A printed version of the text was planned, with elaborate woodcuts illustrating important passages, but this version was never produced due to disagreements between the printer and the acolytes that possessed the original text. While some woodcut illustrations were made, and are still widely admired, the text itself is only found in a few hand-written copies.

2007-03-26 01:49 PM » Link: [2277#26166|text]
I need to worship this god.

2016-06-06 04:51 PM » Link: [2277#96103|text]
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Comments ( 83 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

February 4, 2006, 16:08
Will it ever be done? Or has Mathom taken it to his heart?
February 15, 2006, 12:07
Maybe it was delayed for a while, but now it is finally done!

All praise Mathom!
Voted Spark
February 22, 2006, 21:39
This is really cool. I for one really wish there was no doubt as to whether or not Mathom is a real God. You took something trivial and really made it work, and that's talent.
Voted Iain
February 23, 2006, 4:23
Great! It's rare indeed that someone comes up with a truly new idea for a god.
Dragon Lord
February 23, 2006, 9:08
I've been intending to comment on this for some time, but somehow I never quite got around to it ... hmmm ... the God at work perhaps

Thanks for the credit manfred – to be honest I only really got caught up in your joke, but I see you've included one or two of my suggestions (well the better ones at least) and it seems to have come together nicely

Since this, at least partially, owes much to my input I shall post no vote – a little close to the voting for your post I feel

Every bit as good as predicted though – well done that man
Voted Strolen
February 24, 2006, 18:09
He deserves a site dedicated to him alone. Actually I will do it!! Soon!!! Really!!?
Voted Cheka Man
February 24, 2006, 19:36
LOL The God of Delays-Excellent!
February 25, 2006, 0:53
Here's an idea...

The lower priests of Mathom, the adepts and others not yet gifted with the ability of magical delay, instead perform more physical obstructions- throwing themselves in the way of individuals on pressing errands, "accidentally" upsetting barrels of salt and racks of trinkets in the paths of carts so that they must stop... Basically making a nuisance of themselves.
February 25, 2006, 6:05
Hmmm... any worthy adept would already be spreading delays around himself, without any intent of doing it. But there really could be some worshippers trying it.

Actually, this would be a great (and innocent-looking) diversion.
"Hey! Why are you blocking the path?!"
"I profusely apologize, sir. I had slightly forgotten myself contemplating the mysteries of Mathom. It was the question of the right moment, that has occupied me, and..."
"Aaargh! Forget this fool and catch the darn thief! Goo!"

Impersonating a priest of Mathom may be useful at times. Just take care that you don't become one, it has happened more than once.
February 25, 2006, 14:01
It would seem that actually doing something purposely you defie the will of Mathom. Any Priest worth his beans would be a worthless priest if he actually tried to do something. If they intentially did something then they wouldn't be followers of Mathom. Seems that priests of Mathos wouldn't be 'developed' or 'groomed' they just are.

My head spins when I read and think about Mathom, I have so much to add to it but don't have the time to do it!
February 25, 2006, 14:37
You have already recieved His blessing. :)
Voted Murometz
February 25, 2006, 1:05
sorry for the delayed vote
February 25, 2006, 11:02
Voted Scrasamax
February 26, 2006, 8:13
my old computer was doubly blessed by Mathom...
Voted Michael Jotne Slayer
March 7, 2006, 17:36
Michael Jotne Slayer
March 7, 2006, 17:37
Sorry for the delayed comment; All praise Mathom.
Voted Kinslayer
April 30, 2006, 19:32
By Mathom, the time to vote 5.0 for this is now. It's the god of Slack, that's great.
Cheka Man
May 30, 2006, 19:24
I want to write a story about Mathom...but I don't feel I have the time to do it, as there are so many other things to do.
Voted Siren no Orakio
May 30, 2006, 22:17
Truely, an incredi-- one sec...
Voted Mourngrymn
May 31, 2006, 15:41
Ah, the joke of ages, not to jump on the bandwagon but perhaps Mathom kept me from this for so long.

You would think that to become a priest of Mathom wouldn't be a choice as Strolen has said. It is more of someone who seems to have bad luck perhaps? Always causing havoc when they are near. As you said knocking over a group of barrels to block the path of the city watch or in front of a coach only to help and slow things down for your distractions or incompetence.

A 'Priest of Mathom' could be a title not woth having and therefore are given special benefits from the God of Delay. A conundrum to say the least.
Voted Dozus
June 3, 2006, 20:03
Cheka Man
August 12, 2006, 8:25
I think Mathom is frowning on my attempts to get a cybergirlfriend, as there is always something happening that makes every attempt fail. :(
Cheka Man
August 12, 2006, 13:11
Also to a lesser extent on my and my parent's travel plans.
Ancient Gamer
August 13, 2006, 3:32
Mathom, a Citadellian institution and the God of Delays
Cheka Man
September 3, 2006, 14:33
I have felt His heavy hand today when I wanted to write something for :(
Voted axlerowes
September 22, 2006, 14:23
Cheka Man
November 8, 2006, 14:14
Mathom is interfereing with my microphone.
Cheka Man
November 9, 2006, 14:52
and my web camera too.
November 9, 2006, 15:31
You have been a dilligent worshipper, thus you recieve His blessings.
Voted Pariah
January 14, 2007, 0:18
OH WOE IS HE! Even Mathom has been reduced to a simple formula now.
January 14, 2007, 6:52
I have taken the time to review the article, but clearly the formula in question is only a summary of the factors, as none of them are measurable, so in practice it is useless besides serving as a mental reminder.

Besides, it does not capture the true essence of what is Mathom. Science cannot explain, only describe what our imperfect minds and senses are able to percieve from what is beyond them. Give up the props, and embrace him with your soul, for that is the only way to the true god.

All praise Mathom. :)
Dragon Lord
March 26, 2007, 8:00
I must agree with manfred on this point

Actually I would have done so a couple of months age, but the Blessings of Mathom are upon me
Voted Wulfhere
March 26, 2007, 13:07
I have added Ye Boke of Ye Blesssynges of Mathom as a scroll.

Manfred, thank you for giving us this amusing and useful diety.
March 26, 2007, 14:18
The pleasure is mine, though sometimes I fear the things I produce here... or would fear, if I had the time. :)

I am glad that HE has truly come alive here. All praise Mathom!
Cheka Man
April 1, 2007, 21:16
I loved the Book of Mathom. I would do a scroll for this but I never get around to it.
Voted Eclipse
April 25, 2007, 14:35
All Praise Mathom!!
Voted Pieh
June 15, 2007, 21:01
I would praise Mathom... but is now really the right time? Yeah, I will praise Mathom... when the time comes. Just... not right now. I think.. maybe.. Yeah, I'll wait.
June 16, 2007, 6:09
There is always time to praise Mathom, but sometimes there is no time to praise Him properly.
September 26, 2007, 22:18
Interesting, and the amount of love shown this is a bit scary.
September 26, 2007, 22:23
When I saw Mathom mentioned in the Walking Dead scroll, I couldn't figure out what it was referring to (I googled it and got something completely different). But this explains it.
September 27, 2007, 5:58
See, you have to search in the right places.

Actually, I plan on doing a massive SEO campaign, to finally get Mathom the recognition He deserves. One day, he will dominate the whole Internet.
December 13, 2007, 12:12
You mean he does not?
December 13, 2007, 15:25
Of course is His influence palpable there, as in many other places. But people are too often ignorant to the truth, and the few that know are loath to embrace his worship. We should aid everyone to a better understanding of Mathom and his place in our universe. For that is the way to finding true inner peace.
November 6, 2008, 16:22
I'll get right on that, just as soon as I finish this submission...
Voted Ouroboros
December 13, 2007, 8:05
Love this one. An institution in its own right. They should teach the doctrine of Mathom instead of that Intelligent Design crap. Here´s a deity with some LOGIC to ´im.
Ancient Gamer
December 13, 2007, 9:06
I am meaning to vote on him.

Some day.
Voted MoonHunter
December 13, 2007, 12:10
I think it is time for me. I mean I first posted on this feb 2006
December 13, 2007, 12:21
Now no one get too hasty now!
Cheka Man
December 13, 2007, 13:36
This page was slow to load today. lol
Cheka Man
January 12, 2008, 23:55
Has Mathom ever indirectly kept someone alive I wonder?
January 13, 2008, 16:04
But of course. It is by His aid, that many survive yet another day. And a few - like prisoners sentenced to death - beg for His intervention on their behalf.
Voted Chaosmark
January 13, 2008, 16:59
Old. Amusing. A running joke that hasn't found the time to quit yet.

As good as the sub is, though, it'd be honestly quite hard to actually use in a campaign...
January 13, 2008, 18:08
Well, besides the fun factor, you can readily employ Mathom as a wild card - anytime something/someone (including the PCs) needs to be stalled. Then there's the various side-effects and pieces of chrome like the Time-Wine. Lastly, it is an excellent concept to ponder over the fifth glass of ale.

It is not something to define a campaign, but rather to extend it with (and supply the GM with an extra tool).
Siren no Orakio
June 7, 2008, 14:46
I should probably comment properly on this some day, but I have too much else to do. Back later.
Dragon Lord
July 3, 2008, 12:04
I've been kinda meaning to comment on Ye Boke of Ye Blessynges of Mathom, but I've never really gotten around to it

... and I'mnot at all sure I've got the time just now

Oh well, maybe someday
July 3, 2008, 16:44
I really meant to expand something here... and all the blessings of Mathom fell on me. I should have known better. :)

All praise Mathom!
Voted Kassil
November 6, 2008, 17:21
I kept meaning to vote and say something here, but... You know.
November 6, 2008, 18:11
Trust me, I know.
Voted Drackler
March 24, 2009, 16:27
I would not make the same joke that everyone else has about being delayed, except that I'm too busy right now.

Fhtagn! I've created a paradox!
Voted Nobody
February 19, 2010, 16:16
Yeah, I always did mean to vote on this. I think I wanted to wait until I could pull it back up from the vault with an HoH. I guess now is the appropriate moment.

It occurs to me that followers of Mathom don't have to lack aims or goals. They could be just as ambitious as others, they would however be more apt to take plenty of time checking and double checking their work, time being a blessing and not a curse, and of course, receptive to distractions as a sign from Mathom that they haven't given their goals it's proper time.

It's funny, I started writing this comment at 10am, and it's 6pm now.

Voted Redgre
March 25, 2010, 14:00
Very funny. I had a really good laugh with this one, I'm still hurting. I'm surprised this submission was as complete as it is... ;)
Voted Dossta
November 4, 2010, 13:31

Rarely does a submission make my job drop, but this one is stunningly clever.  If I could get away with it, I would love to play a priest of Mathom in a campaign, or get one of my players to indulge me.  Bloody brilliant.  5/5

February 2, 2011, 1:23

I've been meaning to HoH this for some time, but just never got around to it . . . no matter, here's my patented "Smashing Sub of the Day" award.  Have your HoH!

Voted valadaar
February 2, 2011, 15:11

Heh, commented in 2007! but did not vote till now.  Hmmm. 

February 3, 2011, 2:02
Just getting around to it, eh?

(Yes, I know... That's what EVERYONE ELSE said. I'll think of something original when I have some spare time.)
Voted MysticMoon
March 30, 2011, 0:06

I've seen references to this for months and I always meant to read the whole thing, but, well, you know...

March 30, 2011, 14:54
Well, we would of got around to explaining to you eventually. But, you know....
Voted hylandpad
September 9, 2011, 20:15

This quite literally made my day. Having a crummy day at work, but I read this and I loved it so much I had to grab my PC and comment. Excellent, EXCELLENT work. Amusing, but at the same time highly usable. I could totally imagine some really interesting dialogue, using this God in colloquial speech as a synonym for laziness or delay.

Now I should get back to work but...

Cheka Man
January 14, 2012, 23:17

This is my favorite thing on the Citadel.

Voted OjnoTheRed
April 17, 2012, 7:28
Only voted
Voted Kassy
April 17, 2012, 8:23

Mathom, the cause of many sleepless nights of mine :P

Voted Forganthus
May 23, 2012, 1:33
It's just one joke. But it's a good joke.
Voted Dionysus
June 4, 2012, 14:46
I am smitten with admiration. This is indeed an entertaining submission, with entertaining commentary too!
Voted Ted
October 4, 2012, 2:39
I can't believe I've never voted on this.
Cheka Man
October 5, 2012, 15:56
Mathom must have got in the way.
Voted caesar193
January 27, 2013, 21:18
If I happen to make a comment that could be taken as aforesaid joke, involving Mathom delaying/hindering my voting/HoHing/ commenting, it is not intended.

Such a classic deserves another name (my own) on the old HoH list. And I got around to commenting and voting on this.
Cheka Man
June 30, 2014, 23:30
Does anyone have an idea for a symbol of Mathom?
July 1, 2014, 2:40
Working on it.
March 14, 2015, 19:17
A "herd" of cats? An unraveled ball of yarn? A question mark, without the dot on the bottom? A "delays ahead" traffic sign? Im stumped.

Cheka Man
March 19, 2015, 22:30
This is the Sub that keeps on giving.
Voted Grieves
September 5, 2017, 2:42
Just created an avatar of this god, Nartine the Stubborn. Mathom is just too cool not to have a terrestrial representative.
September 5, 2017, 13:01
We were going to get around to doing that.


Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: Raptyr

Nine times out of ten, it’s the undead that do the running.

Not strictly animal or vegetable, the Corpse bud is a peculiar individual that shares characteristics from multiple kingdoms and species. In appearance, all corpse buds bear a shape of a large rounded top bud divided into four lateral segments, and a much longer, narrower bottom bud, also divided into four segments. Between the two halves are a set of four radial limbs, rounded on top and flat on the bottom, covered with tiny serrated hooks facing towards the body. In overall size, it’s limbs reach as wide as a spread hand, with the body being as thick as a fist. It is as long as a human hand from top to bottom.

Internally, the top bud of the corpse bud contains a bacteria filled membrane that produces the hydrogen that the corpse bud uses to stay aloft, and a series of fungal gills for the dispersal of spores for reproduction. The lower half of the bud contains a number of fine filaments, as well as a sharp barbed stinger containing a powerful local anaesthesia.

The Corpse Bud mobilizes by inflating its top bud, and steers by rotating its arms rapidly about its body. The corpse bud ordinarily drifts with the wind, orienting towards the scent of recent decay and death. It preys on the recently dead, burrowing the lower bud into the victim, using the anaesthesia in case the victim is dying, and not truly deceased. Once embedded, it releases its filaments into the body, replacing the current nervous system. This gives it full animation of the body, and allows the corpse bud to direct it.

Corpse buds are not a malevolent species, being primarily concerned with breaking down the host body for food, and infecting the reproductive cycle with spores in order to mate with other corpse-bud bodies. To preserve the corpse for this purpose, Corpse buds will seek out dry locations to prevent bacteria from destroying the corpses. This often causes a large number of corpse buds to gather in a single location.

In culture, Corpse buds are used to repair broken spines or degenerative diseases, as the sentient mind will easily overcome the mind of the non-sentient corpse bud. Once infected by a corpse bud, however, removal is usually fatal, and the infected individual cannot reproduce, or risk infecting another. Thus, it is a technique often reserved for the elderly, or a last resort.

Necromancers and other dark sorcerers will often preserve the corpses of their victims magically, and infect them with corpse buds, creating traditional undead as well, so as to seed their lairs with undead both offensive and non, in order to throw their enemies off balance. They will also enslave the rudimentary minds of the corpse buds, and transform the docile things into a plague. There have also been accounts of magically transformed corpse buds with stronger minds and a taste for living flesh, but thus far all accounts are unproven rumors.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | October 12, 2011 | View | UpVote 3xp

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