The Church of Hala is a secretive and highly mystical faith. Her clerics – called witches whether they be male or female- operate a number of hospices scattered throughout the Core where they offer rest and healing to anyone who comes to their door. The church does not actively seek new followers, however, and nowhere is the Church of Hala the predominant religion.
According to Hala’s holy text, Tales of the Ages, nine gods created the world from the roiling trusts of Chaos. The gods then withdrew, intending to allow mortals to fill their world with acts both good and evil. But the mortals lacked wisdom, and the world was soon filled with pain and anguish. Just one of the Nine Gods, the goddess Hala, returned to the world to ease its suffering. She gathered together thirteen women and thirteen men and taught them the secrets of the Weave, forming the first covens. Symbolizing the unity and interdependency of the coven (and all life), the symbol of Hala is a ring formed by thirteen serpents, each devouring the tail of the one before it.
Devotees of Hala often speak of the Weave, a hidden web of magical power which flows through the natural world. According to them, the magic of the Weave is not arcane or divine, but something wholly different, the mystical pulse of the land and all its living creatures. Hags have learned to tap into the Weave and corrupt it to their whims, tangling it like a cat’s cradle on their wicked talons. For those who are pure of heart and wise in the ways of magic, however, the Weave can open up new realms of magical power, brimming with all the fury of nature Herself. These are the hallowed witches, those who have seen the pattern of the Weave and made it their ally, tool, and weapon. Their art is known as witchcraft, and in its pursuit they gather together in covens to fortify their power.
Unfortunately, the Weave is also known as witchcraft and provokes widespread, superstitious fear. Witchcraft’s wretched reputation is largely due to hags, the most infamous practitioners. Although witchcraft is not inherently evil, it is thought to be rife with occult dangers. Exposure to witchcraft is thought to create Calibans, and according to folklore, witches who lose control of their magic may be permanently transformed into monstrous hags. Hala’s witches often face hostility when beyond the doors of their hospices. Any witch of Hala unwise enough to encounter the inquisitors of Tepest, for example, should count herself lucky to escape with her life.