Lu-Bat

Lu-Bat is the Planetary Incarna of the planet Saturn. The Peaceful Counselor is the second largest of the planetary Incarna in the Aetherial Realm. Though all the gas giants have rings, Lu-Bat's are the largest and most spectacular, glowing against the darkened sky. While they look as though they are divided into only a couple of broad rings with gaps in between, they are actually several separate rings with two main divisions. In the earthly realm, these are made up of ice chunks, rock, balls of snow (from house-sized down to minuscule dots) and ice crystals. They circle like a snow storm of semi-solid snowflakes around the body of the planet. Here, most are Lu-Bat's jagglings. They ring the planet's equator, making it possible for travelers to avoid them all together for a time. After passing approximately half of them, though, travelers must go among them to greet the Incarna.

Going Back to Saturn Where the Rings All Glow

There is much beauty and pleasure that any Garou can appreciate in Lu-Bat's rings, because they tend to restore one's faith in the Wyld and the unknowable. They triumph over the cold, hard science and the Weaver, after all according to physics, all the rings should move in an exact circle around the planet. Some don't, though. Further, some of the rings overlap each other and end up in a braided pattern — Something the laws of physics say should be impossible. Along with his rings, the Peaceful Counselor also has a number of moons and satellites, the most in the system. Unlike Zarok, Lu-Bat has not granted his spirit minions the right to his moons.

Thrill seekers among the Garou are welcome to "ride the rings." Lu-Bat understands that there must be outlets for aggression and boredom and gives his permission for any travelers to synchronize their movement with one of the outer rings and hop on. This however, is easier said than done. The equivalent of riding a skateboard on a roller coaster track or trying to surf a tsunami; it isn't easy, but it's fun and dangerous, a combination that many Garou find irresistible.

Despite his size, Lu-Bat is a relative lightweight. True, the planet weight about 95 times as much as Eshtarra, but that weight is distributed over such a large area that if one could find a body of water large enough to contain it, Lu-Bat would float. Accordingly, its gravity is only a little more than Eshtarra's. Again it is mainly a gaseous world, but travelers will not find the same difficulties as experienced with Zarok's realm. Although Lu-Bat maintains his own dwelling on the actual planetary surface, he meets with visitors among the rings. Within the smaller division among the rings rests a small moon. Knowing that many of those who would travel his realm are used to solid structures, Lu-Bat has chosen this spot to construct his Council Hall. Here we find comfortable quarters were visitors may stay during their visit. While there, one may interact with emissaries from all the totems of Wisdom, who act as ambassadors to the Incarna and take counsel with him.

Lu-Bat is the greatest advocate for peace and cooperation among the Incarnae, which isn't terribly surprising in one who acts as patron of the Children of Gaia. It often surprises others that he also represents the Ragabash though. Those who cannot figure out how such a composed, quiet Incarna can be patron to the Ragabash do not fully understand the nature of oftentimes wild pranksters. Lu-Bat speaks to that element of the Ragabash that many never acknowledge, which is to find joy and acceptance in things as they are while urging the Garou to try new things. While it may be strange to think of a patron of the Ragabash as being the "Steady One," it is best to remember that even tricksters have to have a centered portion of themselves — and an innate understanding of others — from which their humor arises.

Lu-Bat's main strength lies in understanding. Where others may waste themselves in futile battle against foes or in ferreting out some hidden secret that will give them the advantage, Lu-Bat listens with his heart to what the words and actions of the others tell him about them. He then treats with them from the position of knowing what is important to them and what they need to hear. This is not to say that Lu-Bat is totally pacifistic, merely that he resorts to violence last after he has exhausted all other possibilities. That in itself makes him a formidable opponent and worthy of great respect. That he has the attention and cooperation of many, many Star-spirits and totems as well as most of the other Incarnae makes him powerful indeed.

Lu-Bat may offer counsel as well as teach travelers Gifts or bestow fetishes or talens upon those who appear to need such or please him with their discussions.

Lu-Bat's Council Hall

Moving toward the moon where travelers are to meet with the Incarna, one will see the brilliant sunlight reflecting off the millions of ice particles within the rings, this lights the way to the Council Hall.

Looking as though it were raised up out of the moon's material and shaped to fit its purpose as an afterthought, Lu-Bat's Council Hall folds into, rather than dominates, the landscape. Unless one were specifically looking for it, it could be easily missed altogether or dismissed as just another hill. Only by looking closely can one see the door and window openings. Just inside the main entryway lies a large oval hall from which several passages radiate like spokes of a wheel. Travelers will be given rooms along one of these wings. Each quarter is pleasant but not overly grand and looks out on to a scene of the rings, a breathtaking view for those who can enjoy it. One can almost hear the faint, soporific sound of their continual whirring as they move past.

Pleasant, calming scents perfume the air here, reminiscent of sandalwood or amber and underlying the sound of the rings, soft tones of music float through the air, sounding briefly, then gradually fading away to be replaced by another tone. The lighting in the hall partially reflects the sun-warmed bronze yellow of the rings, but there exists a greenish undertone to it as well that promotes harmony.

The room were Lu-Bat's council meets opens outward from the entry hall and is itself circular. Centered to the hall is a lower area where those who wish to speak in council gather and seat themselves upon comfortable cushions. The Incarna generally takes a central cushion and acts as facilitator from the council meeting. Radiating outward from the central bowl are rows and tiers of risers, each cushioned and slightly higher than the next one down so that all may have a view of the proceedings. Like a Greek amphitheater, the acoustics are so fine that a whisper from the council bowl can be clearly heard in the highest tier seats. Here, no secrets my be whispered without all being privy to them. For this reason, some of the less open Incarnae refuse to meet together in Lu-Bat's Council Hall, fearing their secrets may inadvertently be betrayed there.

Dangers of the Realm

Although there exists some danger from the rings, only those who choose to attempt riding them are affected by it. Lu-Bat takes great care that no one actually travels to the planetary portion of his realm, where other dangers may exist.

The chief in Lu-Bat's realm comes from its very nature. Those who live lives of strife, frustration, Rage and battle may find the peace of the Incarna's realm overwhelming. Given time for reflection and contemplation in an atmosphere of drowsy quiet, some Garou fall into a state of complacency and laziness they cannot seem to break. Despite the werewolves' violent nature, there is always some spark of longing for exactly the sort of resting-place that Lu-Bat's domain provides. It is a haven from cares, a shelter against the eternal war the Garou must wage on Gaia's behalf. From providing a much-needed lull in battle, it can easily become a crippling haven Garou become reluctant to leave. It's far easier to bask in contentment and engage in philosophical discussion than to throw oneself back into red, raging battle against the Wyrm. Garou who show any inclination toward relaxing completely during their stay in Lu-Bat's realm may enter this state where they lack the will to leave, undergoing a sort of weird post traumatic shock disorder in which they willfully refuse to remember there are dangers elsewhere they have a duty to fight.

Lu-Bat as a Totem

Lu-Bat has been known to serve as a totem of Wisdom if properly approached, although he often refuses such requests. He prefers that Garou find their own way and make their own decisions, and will only act as a pack's patron if convinced that the pack will not use him as a crutch.

Lu-Bat tends to appear quite normal, even understated. While he can assume the form of a smallish gray wolf, a snowy owl and a luminous moth-winged being, he rarely does so, preferring a simpler human form. He appears to be a slightly older man of average hight with dark skin, friendly brown eyes, and dark hair worn braided in front and loose behind his back. His attire is a simple long jacket over loose trousers, usually of a pale saffron colour, and he wears unornamented slippers. His turban is small and fastened with a single greenish-brown stone. The Incarna smiles easily and appears relaxed and at peace with himself and others.

Lu-Bat grands an understanding of riddles and the hearts of others. His children find it easier to empathize with others, understand the riddles life brings and gain access to understanding the ways of occult matters. The Peaceful Counselor also grants each of his children keener eyes, and two temporary Wisdom renown.

Children of Lu-Bat are not allowed to act hastily; his packs must always have a backup plan for every major endeavor they attempt.

Lu-Bat, The Peaceful Counselor: The Lunar Tenth Month

Aetherial Realm - Saturn
Auspice - Ragabash
Colours - Greenish-brown, Yellow
Element - Earth
Other Names - Cronos, Prah, Bran, Balder, Thoth, Pah
Quality - Acceptance
Tarot Card - The World
Tribe - Children of Gaia
Vices - Sloth
Virtues - Peace, Wisdom
Zodiac Correspondence - Capricorn

The tenth lunar month sees our journey take an inward turn, away from the expansive qualities of leadership toward the restrictive principle that leads the Garou to understand their limitations and come to terms with both their strengths and weaknesses. Lu-Bat, the Peaceful Counselor, assists in this inner quest for acceptance.

From the glooming realm of Saturn, enclosed by rings of cosmic matter, Lu-Bat exercises his influence over the boundaries that create lives and determine the limits of ones' aspirations. Greenish brown and yellow, the colours of Saturn, symbolize the earth tones of the material world. Saturn reminds all that they exist in a world of finite possibilities and that their lives play out against the backdrop of space and time.

Lu-Bat cherishes the critical nature of the Ragabash auspice. Ragabash born under the influence of the Peaceful Counselor use their tricks as commentaries on the foibles of those around them, attempting to ridicule others into retuning to their proper courses of action. Ahroun born during the tenth lunar month may rouse to action slowly, but once they do, they fight with a keen awareness of their enemies' weaknesses (as well as of their own vulnerabilities). Lu-Bat's Philodox often counsel caution and care, passing judgment only after careful deliberation and making certain to live no loopholes in their decisions. Galliards who acknowledge Lu-Bat as their patron appreciate the strict meter and form of traditional-poetry and song and eschew the un-metered, free-from compositions of more modern times. Lu-Bat Theurges study the limits of their powers carefully, so as not to overreach themselves when exercising their abilities.

The Children of Gaia, who have long acted as advisors to the Garou, enjoy the favor of Lu-Bat, who approves of that tribe's desire for reconciliation and acceptance. Echoing Lu-Bat's concern with moderation and limitation, the Children of Gaia see to teach universal respect for boundaries and differences.

Western Astrology attributes this time of year to Capricorn, the fish-tailed goat of the stars. Associated in Babylonian myth with the god Ea, considered the savior of humanity during the great World-Flood, Capricorn also symbolizes Pan, god of exceeding limitations. Ruled by Saturn, the sign of the water-goat contains an inherent duality — in order to understand the concept of limits, an individual must also comprehend the consequences of stepping outside those boundaries. The Roman festival of Saturnalia had at its heart not only the celebration of excess but also the understanding of its consequences.

Garou born during Lu-Bat's month my aspire to the rare state of acknowledging and accepting limitations without feeling overly restricted by them. at worst, Lu-Bat's greatest failing lies in a tendency toward sloth and inertia, drawing contentment in resting idly within comfortable limits.

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