Into the Ashlands
One of the most misunderstood and feared sects of the prevailing Kava religion of the Ahjlian isles, the Kaghora are shunned by many practitioners of Kava because of their cannibalistic ceremonies and self-mutilating rituals. Many Kava Gurus claim that the Kaghora are not Kava at all, and should be cast out of society or banned. Because of this social stigma and tenets of their religion, the Kaghora commonly live in charnel grounds.
The Kaghora are in fact one of the oldest sects of the Kava religion, and were once one of the most popular because of their ability to assimilate savage peoples and races. They have fallen out of fashion as their practices have been deemed bestial and uncivilized by the prevailing Gurus.
The Kaghora trace their lineage back to Kina Ram, an ancient ascetic and founder of the sect. Kaghora believe that the force of life flows through all things that exist. Since this life force is the essence of being, all things that share this essence are one, and therefore no thing should be denied. By consuming the essence of other things, the Kaghora gain power and strengthen their own essence. If enough power is gained, the Kaghora believe they can ascend to immortality and escape the cycle of rebirth.
Because the Kaghora believe in rejoining their individual essence to the oneness of all things, they will eat or drink anything, including all forms of intoxicants, and no sexual practices are off limits to them. They are known for cannibalizing the corpses of the dead to consume their essence and gain power. It is a common ritual of adulthood for a Kaghora to drink until their minds are altered and consume the body of a dead elder. Through this practice it is believed the weak soul of the child gains strength and becomes the strong soul of an adult.
Kaghora are also known for their extreme resistance to pain. Ritual self-mutilation is an important part of their beliefs and Kaghora warriors are feared in battle because of their seeming ability to gain strength and fury from injuries that would cripple others.
Appearance: Kaghora come in all shapes and sizes and all races are welcomed in the sect. Because the Kaghora do not fear death, they commonly dress in the bones and skulls of animals or the fallen. This habit, their self-mutilation, and living on charnel grounds all add to the fear and mystery of the sect.
Kaghora believe that much of the essence of a being resides in the marrow of its bones. They use hammers and other blunt crushing tools in their rituals, and these became the weapons they are most skilled with. Kaghora gain +1 damage with maces and hammers.
Cannibalize: Once per encounter as a minor action, when you are adjacent to an enemy that has been reduced to 0 hit points or less, you may cannibalize them to gain 1d4+Con, Strength or Chr modifier (chosen at creation) temporary hit points. This increases to 2d4 at level 11.
Kaghora have a natural resistance to pain and are said to be hard to kill or injure. Kaghora gain +2 to the endurance skill and the Unfailing Vigor feat at creation.