A Year and A Day: Shinigami

Changeling: the Dreaming

Homebrew Rules

Character Creation Guide Download: Shinigami.pdf

Quoth the Shinigami:

“Hello there old man! No, no, don’t get up. I’m just here to let you know there’s no point in waiting for you kids to come and see you off. They’re not going to. The hell with em though, I’m here. Go ahead and let go. I got your back.”

Kith Excerpt:

Despite the ageless duties of Death, the Death-Gods (From which the Shinigami gain their title) aren’t that ancient of a Kwannon-Jin. Assembled from a variety of influences including traditional Shinto, Buddhist, and Taoist beliefs that merged with Christian influences from the west, the Shingami as we know them are only about 300 years old. They have always been there to be sure, but their roles as “Gods of Death” are a recent one. While the West portrays their functions as Grim Reapers, in Asia the Shinigami are more liaisons or representatives in the grand bureaucracy of Heaven. Also, no self-respecting Shinigami would ever wear Grey tattered robes.

True to its title, a Shinigami is a Shinma responsible for ensuring that someone dies at his or her destined time. These individuals are known as Shi no kitai – (the Death –expecters). The Shi no Kitai are those individuals who are close to death and awaiting their end. These expectant folks are the Shinigami’s raison d’etre. It is also important to note that a Shinigami only ensures that their person dies – it does not perform any of the killing itself. This is one of the many reasons why Shinigami laugh at western portrayals of the Grim-Reaper and mock his dour countenance. Taking lives is for chumps. Being there when that life passes is harder.

The Shinigami laugh at mortality, and mock death. Heaven has a time and place for everyone. Its laws are important role in that they portray how the world should view death, why death works, and how such affects society (Both Hsien and Mortal). This however can leave the Shinigami to be misconstrued as dark and morbid. Many see their flippant portrayals of such a serious subject as callous. This isn’t exactly true. It’s just that the Shinigami have no fear of the next world and, neither should mortals.



“God doesn’t punish the wicked and reward the righteous. Everyone dies. Some die because they deserve to; others die simply because they come from Minneapolis. It’s random and it’s meaningless.” – John Malkovich, In the Line of Fire


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