Religion/meta

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Notes (2018)[edit]

"One thing appears to be missing from this diverse universe, however is religion. The only mention made of religion in the TRAVELLER rules are the religious dictatorships that can occur in world government generation."

"The Stellar Diocese" article in Dragon #101 gave the framework on how religion might work in the Traveler universe. "Clergy members receive an automatic skill of Religion-l upon joining this service. All clerical members age normally as per their race. "

Michael Brown. "The Stellar Diocese" Dragon #101 (Sept 1985): 83.


GDW made an editorial decision early not to have much discussion of religion in Traveller. The JTAS online archives has these three items:

We never dealt with some subjects because we didn't want to provoke a controversy. Religion is a good example – if we say the Third Imperium is atheistic, then we may offend many devoutly religious people. If we say the Imperium is Christian, then we may offend those of other religions. Religion is a topic we never covered in detail (we occasionally mention religions, but we never dealt with the question on an Imperium-wide basis), so we could leave the question up to the individual GM to decide.
Loren Wiseman, JTAS Online, Shoe Salesmen of the Third Imperium, published April 11, 2000

And

Religion: Religion is a highly charged issue (indeed, the TML has just had its semi-annual science-vs.-religion flamewar*) that always seems to metastasize into a dozen smaller (but equally virulent) discussions. We've specified a few religions in various publications over the years, but we have never specified any "official" religion of the Imperium – and we never will. I leave such questions to the individual GMs to deal with or ignore as they see fit.
* I wish we could get a restraining order – "Religion must stay at least 1,000 yards away from science at all times." It would save a lot of wasted electrons, and let the TML get back to important discussions, like the infamous near-C rock-dropping argument.
Loren Wiseman, JTAS Online, Hot-button, published February 13, 2001

And

Those of us who worked at GDW liked to get together, away from work, from time to time. We'd gather at a central location (often Frank's house) for dinner and conversation, bringing friends, significant others, and assorted "hangers on" (as we used to call them). Since we had learned to stay from religion and politics,* our gatherings focused on the same conversational topics: history (mostly military history) and science fiction.
* We agreed to disagree on these subjects. Some people enjoy discussing them with friends, but we discovered that we could not do so without arousing great anger in all concerned.
Loren Wiseman, JTAS Online, To each his own..., published February 5, 2002