|Temple of the Desert Lynx
|Theistic philosophy||Panentheism, Polytheism|
|Holy City||Sekhmet, Barmenia|
|Separated from||Sacred Feline Cult|
|Liturgical language||Classical Brmek, Selucian|
|Number of followers||Unknown|
The Temple of the Desert Lynx (Brmék: Grshjogad Lnékí , Selucian: Templum Caracalis) is a Neo-Felinist denomination, born out of a grassroots movement in the late 40'th century, that aimed to revitalize traditional Felinism as it was before the Barmenian Refugee Crisis.
An oddity among the sects the Temple of the Desert Lynx has no priests or formal church hierarchy. This is likely to prevent it from being subordinated to the priesthood of Religio Seluciana. Instead all worshippers are considered priests, and may act as missionaries or preform rituals as they see fit. The Temple did not grow out of political decisions, but organically, from the grassroots movement of the Felinist revival, which began as secret prayer- and meditation circles of people from all religious backgrounds. Worshippers often meet out in the deserts, in ancient ruins believed to have some connection to felines, or in private homes. Shrines do exist as a place for worship, but are maintained by private believers rather than by any formal hierarchy.
Beliefs and practices
The only formal teaching of the Temple are the Five Principles of The Felinist Revival, issued in 3938 by Sháhazi Péashro leader Miranda Kez'ihrne and a number of fellow like-minded Felinists:
- I. Felinism is a holistic, biocentric philosophy that aims to create unity between Man and Earth through unity between Cat and Man.
- II. Felinism has no dogma, except for Discerning the General Feline Will.
- III. Felinism is, at its core, more of a philosophy than a religion, and is as compatible with other beliefs as the individual wants it to be.
- IV. Practising Felinists should encourage those who, while practising other religions, wants to return to their roots by embracing a Felinist philosophy.
- V. Religious syncretism has been a practice of Felinism since the days of Lady Ershébef Kepahisn and is an integral part of Barmenian culture. This should be cherished as an example of the world-leading religious tolerance and pluralism that Barmenia represents.
In addition to the Principles, many believers adopt additional practices. Some resort to pay for miracles by others seen as having greater connection with the General Feline Will, a practice shunned by orthodox Felinism. Despite its strong egalitarian tendencies, some believers mantain that “sowing a seed” through leaving things at the shrines or donating money to believes who devote their life to the spreading of the faith, will result in a “harvest”. Popular preacher Robertus Orenius stated that how you receive the harvest will also affect if you can harvest once more, just like cats who are good at receiving food through purrs and cuddling from gentle humans often receive once again. Some theologians argue that this practice is a result of religious syncretism, which the Temple encourages, this practice being heavily influenced by the more extreme variants of Charismic Hosianism. Similar practices were also present in the Temple of Lions during the Mede era.
Having grown in secrecy at a time when Felinism was subject to persecution and discrimination, the followers of the Temple tend to value privacy and secrecy above all else, for whatever reason. Some pursue taboos, whatever that may be in their culture. Some have some sort of psychological insecurity; some are seeking to use the power and techniques of the religion to subvert secular authority above them. Believers view this as a wisdom gained through the General Feline Will. As Ershébef Kepahisn once famously said: “If cats could talk, they wouldn't”.