The Nor'I is the world spirit of Norrath, intrinsically linked to life on the planet.
Think of it as the spark that makes plants, animals, and advanced forms of sentient life possible. While powerful entities like Veeshan can create magical creatures, only world spirits such as the Nor’I give rise to mortal life.
What form that life takes is directly affected by the disposition of the world spirit itself. Should the Nor’I become grievously wounded by a cataclysmic event, its entire pattern of life may be altered, causing fundamental changes to the world’s population.
The Nor’I is not a person, nor does it possess a physical form. It does not speak, though those who are attuned to its essence often claim to hear its song.
While the life force of the Nor’I flows throughout Norrath, it tends to coalesce strongly in key locations. Those closely in touch with the world spirit are drawn to such places. The kerrans, for example, are particularly adept at seeking them out, and will fight vigorously against those who seek to control or corrupt these holy sites.
Across the kingdoms of Norrath, there are many different perspectives on what the Nor’I truly is and what its presence means. Some believe the Nor’I to be the one true essence of life, and that all other so-called gods are mere reflections of it. Others believe the Nor’I was a blessing from the goddess Erollisi, and that by protecting it they honor her. Still others reject any notion of divinity and view the Nor’I objectively as a source of power to be studied and harnessed. While these opinions are debated by scholars and zealots alike, the song of the Nor’I lingers on.
It was severely wounded in the cataclysmic event at the end of the Keldarain Era, breaking its link with the Keldarain, causing them to die out. In the world spirits throes of pain, it still emanated life... but that life was touched by pain and darkness. Nasty things emerged from the depths of the world, and there was much suffering. Over time, the Nor'I healed, and the pattern of life changed once more. Though the old races were gone, new ones emerged, and the iksar were among them. It could be said that the iksar were driven by a hint of that lingering darkness... as were others.
The Nor'I is an important religious figure to the Kerrans. They see it as the guiding influence in their lives.