Oath of AsceticismThe Oath of Asceticism revolves around a paladinís rejection of indulgences, in favor of pursuing spiritual goals. Whether a result of that paladinís deityís commands or a choice made independently by the paladin, the Oath of Asceticism sets the paladin apart from the world. They make vows with themselves or whatever deity they worship, as described in the Tenets of Asceticism below. These vows represent the commitments a paladin following the Oath of Asceticism (also known as an ascetic paladin) makes in order to fulfill their oath.
Tenets of Asceticism
The tenets of the Oath of Asceticism depend on the individual paladinís interpretation of asceticism, but most hold to one or more of the ones listed below. However, all who swear the Oath of Asceticism must abstain from one or more physical indulgences - wealth, romance, drink, and so on. The core of an ascetic paladinís power arises from their renunciation of the carnal world, allowing them to gain enlightenment and inner strength. Common tenets are listed below, in no particular order.
Vow of Poverty. In order to separate themselves from the physical world, many ascetic paladins forswear their possessions and instead choose to live a life of poverty. They hold only basic clothing, a simple walking stick, plain food, and their holy symbol. They use monetary wealth only for charitable donations, not personal gain.
Vow of Chastity. Some who swear the Oath of Asceticism give up their physical connections in pursuit of their Oath. They renounce courtship and intimate contact, resisting their physical urges and temptations to gain enlightenment. Married ascetic paladins may choose whether their spouse is exempt from this Vow or not.
Vow of Abstinence. Alcoholic beverages weaken the body, cloud the mind, and interfere with the spirit, at least according to some who follow the Oath of Asceticism. They refuse to drink alcohol in any of its forms, resisting popular opinion in favor of spiritual pursuits.
Vow of Service. In order to truly reach enlightenment, some ascetic paladins give up their own needs and desires, instead spending their efforts on others, be it their family, community, church, or even complete strangers. Those who swear this particular Vow make especially good adventurers with the extra motivation of selflessness to inspire adventurous behavior.
Vow of Mercy. A small number of ascetic paladins go so far as to swear off killing. They refuse to take the life any other being. Some limit it to just sentient creatures, some extend it to any violence at all. These paladins embody asceticism through rejection of murderous ways, contrary to most other adventurers.
You gain oath spells at the paladin levels listed.
Oath of Asceticism Spells
Paladin Level Spells 3rd longstrider, sanctuary 5th calm emotions, enhance ability 9th crusaderís mantle, haste 13th freedom of movement, stoneskin 17th commune, hallow
When you take this oath at 3rd level, you gain the
following two Channel Divinity options.
Discipline of Mind. If you make a Wisdom, Intelligence, or Charisma saving throw and fail, you may use your Channel Divinity to reroll that saving throw. You must use the new result.
Forget the Self. As an action, you can use your Channel Divinity to inspire an ally within 60ft that you can see and that can hear you. That ally may immediately take an action.
At 3rd level, you may choose to learn a new method of combat, in light of your renunciation of your old ways. The Ascetic Combat is an optional feature for ascetic paladins, as not all ascetic paladins swear the Vow of Poverty. If you choose to gain this feature, you lose their Fighting Style feature and lose proficiency with all weapons (besides unarmed strikes and quarterstaves), all armor, and shields. In return, you gain the following benefits.
Unarmored Defense. While you are wearing no armor and not wielding a shield, your AC equals 10 + your Dexterity modifier + your Charisma modifier.
Martial Arts. You gain the following benefits while you are unarmed or wielding only a quarterstaff and you arenít wearing armor or wielding a shield:
- You can use Dexterity instead of Strength for the attack and damage rolls of your unarmed strikes and quarterstaff.
- You can roll a d4 in place of the normal damage of your unarmed strike or quarterstaff. This die changes as you gain paladin levels, as shown in the Martial Arts column of the Monk table. (1d6 at 5th level, 1d8 at 11th level, and 1d10 at 17th level) If you also have monk levels, they stack for the purposes of determining Martial Arts damage.
- When you use the Attack action with an unarmed strike or a quarterstaff on your turn, you can make one unarmed strike as a bonus action, assuming you haven't already taken a bonus action this turn.
- Your unarmed strikes count as weapon attacks for the purposes of your Divine Smite feature. When you use Divine Smite in this way, your attack counts as magical for the purposes of overcoming resistance and immunity.
- All attacks made using the Improved Divine Smite feature (gained at 11th level) count as magical for the purposes of overcoming resistance or immunity to non-magical attacks.
Aura of Defense
Starting at 7th level, you and friendly creatures within 10 feet of you gain resistance to bludgeoning, slashing, and piercing damage.
At 18th level, the range of this aura increases to 30 feet.
Shun the Material
Upon reaching 15th level, you or a willing ally you touch may become ethereal, as per the etherealness spell for 1 minute. Once you use this feature, you cannot use it again until you take a short or long rest.
At 20th level, you may briefly transcend your physical limitations and gain a perfected body. For 1 minute, your body shines with a soft light as your pure spirit shows. During this time, you gain the following benefits:
- All attack rolls that target you have disadvantage.
- You regain 10 hit points at the beginning of each of your turns.
- You gain a fly speed of 60ft (hover).