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The Shahdah Cult is a fanatic militant organisation which is built upon the extremist worship of Illahvatar and the adherence to its stipulations to the letter. Founded by Hulebek Azdaragar, a wainrider clan-leader, and inspired by the former Archon Anaris Engoria and her writings, their mission is to destroy the "unclean" and "godless" heretics, or at least all those who go against the teachings of Illahvatar in direct opposition. As they were founded to counter the influence of the Tankridian Cult, they could be considered a counter-cult, though cultists claim that they were called by Illahvatar to do this, which indicates them as a technical sect of Illahvatarism.

They follow Illahvatar, who is the Rhunic variant of Illuvatar, spread down to the Rhunaedrim by the Blue Wizards in days of yore. Over the years, cultural influences have shaped the name Illuvatar into Illahvatar and their teachings into a much more strict and strange version of the original.

They are in truth a militia, poorly trained but very fanatic. They currently reside in Maplewood under the patronage of Archon Anaris Engoria after their failed attack on Ruarden, and live in Datown; the slum of the city.

Third Age[]

The Shahdah Cult of Illahvatar, often shortened in Illah, is the result of the "misunderstood" - or so the westerners say - teachings of the faith of Iluvatar spreaded in Rhun by the blue wizards during the Second and early Third ages. Despite the western portions of Rhun, such as Rhudel, later underwent conversion to the cult of Sauron, and other areas in Rhovanion returned to the "original" Iluvatarism, in the lands east of the Rhudel hills and far enough from Mordor the beliefs remained, sometimes replaced by the cult of Sauron, sometimes developing into tribal animism. Nowadays, the most firm believer of Illahvatarism is Ertugrul Qaydum Khan, prominent Balchoth chieftain that brutally forced many tribes to accept it as only true religion.

Firmly believing in Illahvatar, merciless but extremely just god, the followers of the Shahdah Cult strictly follow his teachings, firstly and with the greatest pleasure the order of eliminating every kafir - disbeliever - from Arda. This jihad, or holy war, permeates many aspects of the Balchoth society, despite being less present in other lands - such as Rhudel - that weren't yet affected by the nomadic raids, due to the promise of great pleasures, wealth and consideration in the afterlife for the good followers of Illahvatar.

Among the Shahdah Cult members of the Balchoth, fifty people - the Almuqadas - are elite priest-warriors with formidably strict ethics and intense passion, that united with a ferreous training makes them by far one of the most fearsome Balchoth armies. It is interesting enough to remark how the Illahvatarist start counting the passing of time since the arrival of Pallando in Middle Earth, conventionally set in SA 1600: this makes, for example, the year 2941 of the Third Age into the year 4782 for the followers of Illah.

Controversy[]

Because Illahvatarism lacks central figure along with the unified book it tends to create radical groups like:

Al-Kazeem Brigades

Al-Haqiqa

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