Elder Gods

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The Elder Gods are a fictional group of deities in the Cthulhu Mythos of August Derleth; the similar concepts of the Raaee are a creation of William Hope Hodgson for his Carnacki stories, and the Teros are creations of Richard Sharpe Shaver; Nordic Aliens from UFOlogy seem to very loosely fit a similar "good guy" archetype.


Elder Gods

In post-Lovecraft stories, the Elder Gods oppose the Outer Gods and the Great Old Ones. Some consider them to be non-Lovecraftian because they employ a good versus evil dichotomy which is contrary to the cosmic indifference of Lovecraft's fiction. However, these deities are no more concerned for human notions of "good" and "evil" than the beings they oppose and consider humans to be less than fleas although they can be sympathetic to humanity on occasion and their interests usually coincide with our own.

The main "Elder God" used by Lovecraft is Nodens, who acts as deus ex machina for the protagonists in both The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath (fiction) (1926) and "The Strange High House in the Mist (fiction)" (1931). In this regard, he functions like Lovecraft's Nyarlathotep, although Nodens is obviously less malicious. Another entity mentioned as an Elder God is Hypnos (fiction), the Greek god of sleep. He appears in the story fragment "Hypnos" which is about a mediocre poet who is suddenly granted the power to usher in a new Golden Age. It is also speculated that Bast, the Egyptian goddess of cats, qualifies as an Elder God due to Lovecraft's feline obsession and because of hints given in Lovecraft's "The Cats of Ulthar (fiction)" (1920).


William Hope Hodgson employed a concept similar to (and predating) Derleth's Elder Gods in the mysterious and vaguely-described Raaee from his Carnacki: the Ghost-Finder stories. There, Carnacki speculates based on a Victorian understanding of electricity that the malignant entities which assault the human race from the outside must be opposed and balanced by the fundamental physics of the universe with beings that are opposed to them by complimentary but equal and opposite "vibrations"; this opposing force are the mysterious and apparently distant Raaaee, which on a few occasions appear to have been induced by Carnacki (and, before Carnacki, by an equally vaguely-described cult of "Ab-human Priests of Raaee") to intervene on humanity's behalf against the most severe assaults from the powerful and predatory Outer Monstrosities that await in the "outer circle" to break through the Earth's psychic and supernatural defenses to invade the Earth and menace the human race. Intervention by the Raaee usually takes the form of a mental suggestion or warning: on several occasions Carnacki was saved by psychic prompting which allowed him to complete the "Unknown Last Line of the Saaamaaa Ritual", or by a sudden flash of intuition which gave him the insight to avoid an attack or time to escape.


An element of the "Shaver Mystery", the Teros are a sort of precursor race to man which managed to flee to the stars before Earth's sun grew so dangerous and toxic that the race could no longer live safely on the surface of the Earth without aging, or being driven into the Hollow Earth to slowly go insane with the passage of the aeons. The Teros supposedly act as a positive force allied with mankind against the evil Deros.

The Teros are at best a bit of wishful thinking by Richard Sharpe Shaver: the world may instead be completely under the control of lunatic masters of the Earth dwelling in the caverns of the underworld, inflicting "tamper" on the surface world with mind-control rays and other, even more sadistic technology at their disposal. It seems even more likely that the helpful Teros are instead almost as malignant as the Deros, are actually working with the Deros as their agents to confuse and give false hope to their victims, or, more likely, are simply a pulp element added to Shaver's manifesto A Warning to Future Man by the editor of a pulp magazine to render the awful truth more palatable to the magazine's readers.

The Teros, if they exist, seem to pose as angels, helpful gods, "Nordic Aliens", or other friendly beings in their interactions with humans - "a form you may be more comfortable with". They may approach "chosen" victims in secret, or in invisibly and inaudibly to other people, lending the appearance that the people they are helping are "hearing voices" or otherwise delusional, giving dubious or evasive explanations if asked by the victim, such as not having the energy to reveal themselves to everyone, or being pained by visibility due to the toxic rays of the sun, or being a psychic projection from a spacecraft in orbit, or simply that "it would be better for everyone this way" because it would reveal a true form that is too unsettling for humans to behold.

"Nordic Aliens"

"If you threaten to extend your violence, this Earth of yours will be reduced to a burned-out cinder...."

I am leaving soon, and you will forgive me if I speak bluntly. The universe grows smaller every day, and the threat of aggression by any group, anywhere, can no longer be tolerated.... In matters of aggression, we have given our agents absolute power over us; this power can not be revoked. At the first sign of violence, they act automatically against the aggressor. The penalty for provoking their action is too terrible to risk.... It is no concern of ours how you run your own planet, but if you threaten to extend your violence, this Earth of yours will be reduced to a burned-out cinder. Your choice is simple: Join us and live in peace, or pursue your present course and face obliteration....
- Klaatu, Day the Earth Stood Still (1951 film)

"Nordic Alien" or "Pleiadieans" (for their supposed origin in the Pleiades) is a term used in UFOlogy to describe a variety of alien widely reported in UFO encounters through the 1950s, especially in North America and Europe, generally taking the form of tall, "nordic" humanoids, typically with very pale skin, blonde hair, crystal-blue eyes, a cold and efficient demeanor, and typically a helpful, positive relationship with humanity, acting as mentors, guides, watchers, and/or protectors - "brothers of man", usually displaying psychic abilities.

By some accounts, these beings originate in the Hollow Earth, operating from a secret "UFO base" accessed through holes at the Earth's poles that wrap around into the "inner surface" of the Earth's shell. Early reports alternatively suggested they originated on Mars or Venus.

In earlier ages, these aliens may have approached mankind in the guise of "gods" or "watchers", "ascended masters" and otherworldly "gurus", directly guiding the development of mankind toward benevolence and enlightenment, for these beings' own mysterious purposes; whatever their intentions, the "guidance" and "help" provided by these entities tends to take on a subtly - sometimes overtly - coercive quality.

It's rare for "Nordic types" to abduct or "tamper" with human beings directly: they are more likely to be channeled by mediums and psychics. Most people who have been contacted by these aliens have been convinced of their benevolence, but there are some who have had unsettling interactions with them, and who instead believe that the shows of benevolence are a cover for ulterior motives, and the suspiciously appealing "Nordic" appearance a psychic projection to disguise a true face that humans might found profoundly disturbing and untrustworthy: the face of a Mythos monster.

The "Nordic Aliens" generally seem to be actively opposed to at least the more aggressive and malevolent activities of Mythos entities, warning mankind and arming people against their ancient enemies. For all intents and purposes, they are simply a different guise for the supposedly benevolent "Elder Gods" of Lovecraftian lore, updated for the Space Age.

Small Gods of Pegana

Influences over Lovecraft's concept of weird small "other gods", Lord Dunsany's The Gods of Pegana and Time and the Gods introduced Dunsany's little Gods of Pegana, dreamed into existence by the "Mana-Yood-Sushai". See Gods of Pegana for details.