Musings on the Great Dragons and the Planes
So, being brand new to running Eberron and with a weekly game to run, I've been reading a lot of the backstory to the setting. I've been giving some thought to the Great Dragons and what they are in the setting. My take is that the three dragons correspond to the universe's Id (Khyber), Ego (Eberron), and Superego (Siberys).
Riffing off the suggestion in the fourth edition books that the Elemental Chaos (Chaos of Khyber) reflects the raw feral physicality of the world, whereas the Astral Sea (Sea of Siberys) reflects the more refined, ethical, conceptual aspects of the world. It's nice to be able to deconstruct the whole Khyber=bad, Siberys=good thing and have it be more about primal animal needs versus philosophical conflicts. It's also nice because it allows me to pare down the somewhat overcomplex and unsatisfying planar zodiac into something that feels like it belongs a lot more to the setting. Thelanis and Dolurrh are reflections of Eberron in the same way that the physical world is a reflection of the actual Dragon. Fernia, Mabar, Risia, Irian and the other elemental planes are regions of the Chaos of Khyber, which is the planar representation of Khyber as much as physically the "Underdark" is. Likewise the regions that inhabit the Sea of Siberys are broken and fractured, as befits the shattered nature of the destroyed Dragon--floating isles of ruins ruled over by warring immortals who represent clashing philosophical ideals--maruts, angels, bladelings and the like.
I really dig that. But then somewhere I hear the dragons whining, saying "But...we're the only children of Siberys!"
Y'know, whatever. I mean my personal feeling is that dragons are a race of big lizardy things, as much a part of Eberron as fish and giants and that the rest of it is just philosophers and religionists spinning yarns. That said, if you came to me and said chromatic dragons are from Khyber, metallic dragons are from Siberys, and gem dragons are from Eberron--well I might go with that, if only to disrupt the whole idea that all dragons are alignment vanilla. That said, I find a certain joy that my cosmological model stabs dragons in the eyeball. That makes me smile.