Ministry of Purity
The Ministry of Purity was one of the many ministries of the Canthan empire in the past. They were founded by Minister Reiko Murakami in 1587 CC (1077 AE) but suffered a setback with her death at the hands of Canthan and foreign heroes. However, the ministry eventually rose to power again to continue their xenophobic campaign to unite Cantha and purge it from unwanted groups of people until they were defeated by Empress Haebaragi's forces in the years after the Zhaitan Disaster. Chapters of the ministry's supporters survived the fall, however, and would form the Purists to continue Reiko's work.
Despite the infamous assassin Shiro Tagachi's second death at the hands of heroes who had saved Cantha from his evil, his plague of Affliction persisted in the Empire of the Dragon after his passing. Countless lives were lost, from the families of people forced to live in the streets to prominent families like the Yuudachi, head of the Sai Ling Order. Ashu Yuudachi survived the slaughter under miraculous conditions, and came into the care of his aunt, Minister Reiko Murakami.
In 1583 CC (1073 AE), Reiko, then a member of the Ministry of Flame, made her first strides toward rallying the people of Cantha to fight back against the Afflicted. With Ashu at her side as a symbol of hope, her message resonated with the people. Little by little, Canthans began to take their fate into their own hands. Reiko began to rise in the ranks of the Ministry of Flame, as she and Ashu became renowned public figures. They spoke more often with the people of Cantha, offering the promise of change and the hope for a better future, free of the Affliction. Over the next couple of years, Reiko would become increasingly dissatisfied with the restrictions of the Ministry of Flame. Finding flaws in the system—the needless bureaucracy, political maneuverings, and personal agendas across the entire Celestial Ministry—she came to the conclusion that something greater needed to happen if Cantha was ever going to be able to move forward.
In 1587 CC (1077 AE), Reiko officially established the Ministry of Purity, with Ashu as a central figure. The Ministry of Purity made dealing with that which harmed Cantha its goal: to take action when all other branches of the government were content to turn a blind eye, pass the issues off as the Emperor Kisu's problem, or fault the other ministries. Two years later, the ministry began in earnest its campaign to finally rid Cantha of the Afflicted. Brave men and women rallied to their cause, eager to make their homes safe once more. In the course of the campaign, which lasted under a year, the Afflicted were vanquished alongside many members from the Jade Brotherhood and Am Fah gangs, and the Angchu and Sensali tengu were branded as traitors and routed. The ministry then set its sights on sweeping social reform and became seen as saviors of Cantha.
Winds of Change
- See also: Storyline of Guild Wars Beyond
In 1590 CC (1080 AE), Reiko's ambitions were exposed, and word was sent to Emperor Kisu about her attempts to eradicate the tengu and oppress any Canthan who stood in her way. However, Kisu was unable to act against the Ministry of Purity, whose influence was growing beyond his control, out of worry that divided loyalties between their respective followers would lead to an endless civil war. Reiko was eventually assassinated by her niece Miku Yuudachi and the Hero of Tyria who were assisted by discontent Shing Jea peasants led by Xin Ji, Angchu tengu led by Soar Honorclaw, survivors from the Am Fah and Jade Brotherhood gangs led by Daisuke Crimson Edge and Eri, Heart of Fire, and even the atoning Ministry of Purity initiate Zei Ri. They believed that Reiko and the Ministry of Purity, in their zealotry to fight evil, had become a threat to themselves and to others with the way they violently oppressed those that did not fit their ideal of a purified Cantha.
Miku believed that she was rescuing her brother Ashu from Reiko's grip; however, Ashu refused his sister's protection after Reiko's death and took control of the Ministry of Purity, pledging to show the people of Cantha the correct path to walk and to make Cantha whole again while claiming to not repeat Reiko's mistakes. Those participating in the uprising against Reiko lamented that many Canthans would mourn Reiko's passing despite her crimes and would view the Hero as a criminal.
Rise to power
Despite losing their leader and facing disfavor from Emperor Kisu, the Ministry of Purity lingered on under Ashu's guidance. They became a powerful presence in the imperial court once more by 1637 CC (1127 AE), when their support of Emperor Usoku's successful annexation wars against the Luxons and Kurzicks put them in a position where they could start rooting out those who had opposed their rise to power. Widespread purges perpetrated by the ministry occurred shortly after this, and they were largely successful in covering them up by destroying any mentions of the crimes in official records. The necessary approval of these actions by the Emperor implies that the ministry had by this point become the most powerful faction in the imperial court.
The ministry continued to use its position to crush any and all dissent. By 1689 CC (1179 AE), organized opposition to their influence continued to exist only in secret. Those in court who did not outright support them were accused of sedition and replaced with the ministry's allies. The Ministry of Purity appeared to publicly fulfill the role of an internal peacekeeping force by 1730 CC (1220 AE).
After the waking of the Elder Dragon Zhaitan in 1730 CC and the flooding of Old Kaineng which cost the lives of many Canthans including much of Emperor Kyobok's family, Minister Yeongi, head of the Ministry of Purity, was granted supreme power with regards to any and all security-related matters of the empire. He used these powers, the succeeding Emperor Bitgaram's illness, and the dire situation which Cantha was in during a legal case occurring between 1738 and 1741 CC (1231 AE), further claiming the imperial authority that was to be bestowed upon soon-to-be Empress Haebaragi on the basis that she was still a child at the time. The Minister of Purity narrowly won the case, effectively granting himself and his ministry supreme control over the empire. He quickly used these powers to punish those who had opposed him during the case. Widespread opposition to the Ministry of Purity resurfaced after this.
Civil war and defeat
Sometime after her crowning in 1743 CC, Empress Haebaragi rejected the authority of Minister Yeongi or the notion that he spoke for her, and decreed that the Ministry of Purity was to be disbanded following her disbanding the corrupt Celestial Ministry. This led to a conflict between supporters of both factions, ending with the Ministry of Purity being defeated at the Zen Daijun Temple in 1747 CC after tengu holdouts came to assist Haebaragi's forces at a critical moment. Purist affiliations were outlawed and their propaganda was removed from the records. This appeared to be successful, as by 1775 CC (1265 AE), the Ministry of Purity's legacy was thought to be all but gone.
- See also: Purists
However, despite Haebaragi's efforts, some sympathizers and followers of the Ministry of Purity had survived the purges and founded various clandestine cells that would collectively become known as the Purists years later. Some Canthan investigators had realized that the threat was not truly gone and that sympathizers still lingered on in imperial society with hopes of restoring the Ministry of Purity's ideology to power, but their warnings were ignored.
The Purist remnants recently attempted to gain public support by spreading propaganda, historical revisionism and xenophobia, to some degree of success. The issue of Purist activity in New Kaineng got far worse when a person code-named "White Falcon" rallied the scattered Purists under his command and turned them into what was effectively a domestic terrorist organization.
|The threat was taken more seriously after Minister Li, the head of the Ministry of Security, was revealed to be the ringleader White Falcon. After being arrested, he revealed the identities of several other prominent Purists. Detective Rama believed that the Purists would survive Li's capture despite being weakened.|
- Arborstone: Lost Lore — Locate the lost records of Shing Jea's history across Tyria. (5)
- Arborstone: Pure Enmity — Retrieve Purist documents in Old Kaineng. (1 )
- The Echovald Wilds: The Haunted Court — Defeat the spirits haunting the Court of Song. (3)
- ^ Book titles during Search the Ministry of Archives for Purist propaganda
- ^ A Treaty's a Treaty
- Xin Ji: Why would the Ministry do this? The Angchu helped us!
- <Character name>: Because the Ministry of Purity isn't the infallible entity they would have you believe they are.
- Xin Ji: We have to report this! To Minister Reiko. To...to the emperor himself!
- <Character name>: They likely got their orders from Minister Reiko herself...
- Captain Yong Hei: And the Ministry of Purity has grown too powerful; it has the people on their side. If the emperor were to go against them now, it would lead to endless civil war.
- Xin Ji: Well we must do something! That Tengu saved our lives, we owe it to him! There has to be something that we can do!
- <Character name>: There is. Tell people what you saw here today. Tell them of Ryun's sacrifice, of the Angchu's bravery.
- <Character name>: Show them that this path, the Ministry of Purity's path, will lead them to a darkness from which they may never escape.
- ^ Xin Ji
- ^ Final Words of Zei Ri to His Supporters, 1637 CC
- ^ From a Friend, 1661 CC
- ^ Registry of Offenses, 1689 CC
- ^ Proclamations on the Risen Threat, 1730 CC
- ^ Ministry of Justice Rulings, 1738–1741 CC
- ^ History of the Ministry of Fire
- ^ New Kaineng Zoning Record 0072
- ^ Collected Ministry Edicts, 1747 CC
- ^ Dissolution of the Ministry of Purity, 1747 CC
- ^ Old Friends
- <Character name>: I'm a little rusty on my Canthan history, but things seem...different from what I would've expected.
- Lady Kasmeer Meade: Well, there was a tsunami when Zhaitan arose; lot of Kaineng was destroyed, uninhabitable.
- Lady Kasmeer Meade: Maybe worse than Lion's Arch.
- Marjory Delaqua: Apparently filthy with Risen—Zhaitan, of course—
- Lady Kasmeer Meade: —Which led to a rebellion against the Ministry of Purity—pretty bloody one, too—
- Marjory Delaqua: —Massive civil war, who knows how long—sounds like things were pretty bad, until some tengu holdouts joined up—
- Lady Kasmeer Meade: —Turned the tide, maybe. Still trying to piece it all together. But yeah, not exactly what we expected.
- ^ a b A Last Request, 1775 CC
- ^ Dossier: "White Falcon"
- ^ In the Name of the Law