Tuesday, April 5, 2011

D is for Dreanak'ta

The Dreanak'ta, also known as the "Children of the Void" or "The Hole in the World", are a strong cultural, spiritual, and philosophical force, which, though derived originally from the Breanak teachings of the Kreag Mountain peoples, developed independently in the Nielon Archipelago on Amphitrite in the centuries following its introduction, and is now quite distinct from the earlier tradition.

It is said that several of the Seven Keys of Destiny can only be accessed with the permission or guidance of monastic wardens who are part of the order. This is a highly suspect claim, despite the pervasive extent of the folkloric belief, as the Dreanak'ta share few of the practices of the Seekers, and even fewer of their stated goals. The Dreanak'ta hold that the world is created anew in each instant, with only consciousness acting as a bridge to tie the disparate universes together, and it is the goal of the devotee to experience and absorb as much of each creation cycle as possible, in order to prevent the utter destruction of the world (and the self) from moment to moment. It is the Dreanak'ta belief that sentient beings have a responsibility to cultivate their own consciousness and remember themselves into being from creation to creation.

Monks and nuns of the Dreanak'ta are immediately recognizable by their elaborate, intricately patterned, but entirely black-and-white habits, headdresses, tattoos, and body paint, and by their practice of silently approaching random passers-by and suddenly shouting "T'ol dreanak? Na'tol toralapa?" (literally, "Are you awake? Can you see that you will soon die ?") Lay followers of the sect vary in their public observances, with many giving no outward indication of their philosophy, and others adopting varying degrees of the monastic practice.

The influence of the Dreanak'ta's teachings and practices extends throughout much of the Nine Worlds, albeit usually in a much-diluted form. The most obvious examples of this are the grave insults, present in a variety of forms throughout the Nine Worlds, all of which translate to: "I forgot your name."