Sep. 4th, 2017 11:10 pm
fayanora: by lj user holdonbaby (Elle looks up)
The other day, I had to be outside in 90+ heat. I think it was 99 or close to it. I was out in that shit for hours, and I was with my roomie, who is from The South. I told her I finally understood why southerners spoke in that slow drawl: because the heat makes people slow and makes it hard to think. She basically agreed, saying that everything is done slow in the South because of the heat. And I responded that I find it astonishing that they managed to have any kind of civilization at all down there. If everyone was like me, the South would never have been colonized by anybody ever, it would be wilderness, and everyone would live farther north.

Truly, 90% of the planet is uninhabitable to me. Anything that isn't perfect is either too hot or too cold.

I also commented that I understood why the people of Traipah live mostly underground, because their planet is warmer than Earth. Then I amended the comment with "Well, it was warmer there when I first started writing the story. Not sure if it still would be now because of global warming."

(Traipah doesn't have ice caps. It's cold at the poles, but not too bad. Snow falls at the north pole sometimes but rarely sticks around. The south pole is open ocean.)
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
In response to something ysabetwordsmith posted about a "metagender" character (link here), I wrote:

Then too, there's the Ah'koi bahnis, who would find the concept of gender confusing and or fascinating, as they have only one sex. I mean, to tie personality traits to something as odd as differences in anatomy??? They would ask questions like "So if you lose an arm, what is your gender then?" Or "what gender are you if you have an extra finger?" Or "penis is male, vagina is female... What if you have neither? What if you are a mutant with a cloaca?" "What gender is a sponge?" "My people have both a penis and a vagina. Are we all to like both dolls and trucks at once? How does one express and yet also repress their emotions? Should I oppress myself? Do we get paid the male rate for having a penis, or does our ability to get pregnant condemn us to the female pay rate? We do not have menses and yet we can get pregnant; does your god still consider us unclean? Do I still 'need a man' though I can impregnate myself or do I count as my own man in that situation?" Or other questions like "What if one has none of the traits assigned either gender, assuming that were possible?"

Oh, it could be fun to write a story like that. :)
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
We realized earlier today that Fay, Tempest, Negarahn, and Djao'Kain don't really have an accurate term for their gender. Finding an accurate term has proven difficult. The only really accurate human term we've found so far is "hermaphrodite," but that's a word the intersex community doesn't like people using.

Of course, the conversation on gender goes a little weird at times. Recently, one of us was like "Okay so what would the AKB of Traipah call their gender?" Fay was like "They wouldn't. They only have the one sex." But then Tempest countered with "Yeah but once they met the humans, they might come up with a term for it, it would be their version of "cisgender." And they have something like intersex as well, so gender terms for them might come in handy. So what would the AKB call their majority gender?"

Fay thought a moment, then said, "Well gender would be a new concept for them. So they'd probably use some variation on the English word 'gender.' Considering most AKB are just the one sex, I think they'd call it AhKHoi'djender (ah-oy ʒen-der."

Derived, of course, from the Ah'Koi of "Ah'Koi Bahnis" and the word "gender."
fayanora: Elle tongue (Elle tongue)
I realized today that my constructed language Trai'Pahg'Nan'Nog didn't have a word for "cute." As I was trying to decide what word to pick for that role, I realized that the word "cute" is itself cute. Cute, pronounced kyoot, is a cute word. So the TPNN equivalent should be cute, too. This is what I came up with:

Cute = nyao'ni'mi

Pronunciation guide: "nyao" rhymes with "cow," and the i's in ni and mi say the E name, so nyao'ni'mi rhymes with "cow see me." "Nyao" was also inspired by "nyan" of "nyan-cat."
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)

Picture I drew of one of the Aspects of my primary Deity, Djao’Kain. The Aspect’s name is Shao’Vara. Xe is an Aspect representing Death, Mystery, the Death Mysteries, and the transformative side of death. Xer face is covered by a featureless mask to represent mystery (especially the mystery of the Afterlife) as well as the faceless and uncaring truth of death. Xe is wrapped in a burial shroud (in the culture on Traipah that Xe is from, burial shrouds are black), and the hands holding fire are both torches and symbols of pallbearers; though in that culture, pallbearers don’t carry a body to be buried, they carry it to where the corpse can be liquefied. The liquefied remains are fed to Memorial Trees, which are old-growth trees fed the remains of everyone from a particular family that dies, with plaques installed in their trunks. Those plaques have names, birthdates, and death dates of those whose remains were fed to the tree. Traipah has whole forests full of Memorial Trees, called Memorial Forests.

The three moons of Traipah are also visible in this picture. One is full, two are crescent. One of the crescent moons is tiny, right to the left of Shao-Vara’s head. The paved road is mainly to try to give a sense of perspective. Shao’Vara, wrapped in Xer burial shroud, kneels on a cliff. Not pictured is the ocean the cliff is overlooking, because I didn’t know how to draw that in a way that added to the mystery (or at least did not subtract from it).

I originally wanted to draw Shao’Vara as Xe first appeared to me in a vision, where Xe was nude and emaciated, with one saggy breast and another shriveled up, but I didn’t know how to draw that.
fayanora: Djyahlah (Djyahlah)
I've been working on this Traipah story called "Culture Shock," which is about humans moving to Traipah without enough preparation, and finding it very difficult to adjust. I have the human characters hailing from a colony world that's a lot like our society now, so they're like a stand-in for us. I've been having fun remembering existing Traipahni cultural things that they'll have issues with, of which there are many, and making a few new ones along the way. But the core of the story is making the humans feel, on Traipah, like people on the autism spectrum here feel now.

I was originally going to use this emotive language I came up with for the AKB, which was essentially a subconsciously-used vocabulary of sounds representing different emotions. But it feels unnatural, and it contradicts previously established canon, so I'm scrapping that, rewriting everything I've already written. I came up with a new system anyway, one which feels natural and makes sense. What I've changed it to is that pretty much everybody on Traipah is empathic, and they've been this way so long that most have forgotten how to read most body language. And what's more, the AKB - while looking almost exactly like humans - have an entirely different body language than humans do. A lot of their body language directly contradicts our own, and there's just SO much opportunity for misunderstandings there. Especially since I've come up with an outline of the different ESP abilities which puts humans on such a different empathic "channel" from AKB that only Active Empaths, IE empaths that can reach into people's minds to feel their emotions as opposed to just picking up passive broadcasts, are able to read human emotions. So characters who can read human emotions, like Nokwahl can - from other stories in the same 'verse - are... uncommon. At least compared to other empaths. But it works because "active" ESP is open to other channels, so they don't have to actually violate someone's mind to get an emotional read on them, just keep switching channels until they find the one the passive transmission is on. (Though some species, like the Xazis, don't broadcast their thoughts, and so reading their minds can be very challenging and painful.)

One of the unexpected side benefits of the work I'm doing on this story has been the cultural aspects I've been adding. Like clothing (when they wear it), body decorations, jewelry, festivals, and various sorts of things that are sounding like ideas I want to adopt in my own life if I can. Which is great, because I've wanted ideas like that for YEARS. For years I've been wanting Traipahni cultural things I can do in my own life to feel closer to my spirituality, and the prelim work for this story is providing ideas towards that. Which, funnily enough, most of that is coming from my focus on the youth culture of Traipah, since there are two kids in the family who will be attending school on Traipah, and thus will become immersed in the local youth culture.

For another challenge, Griiahkah - the city they've chosen to live in - is not as familiar with humans as other cities, as it isn't a tourist attraction yet, and is more traditional in the sense that they've literally been using the same computers in the city for the last few thousand years1, so their AI - while more impressive than what we have nowadays - is nowhere near on par with what they'd have in Grah'Bah'Nah'Scia. So the computers there don't know any Terran languages, and the family is poor, so until the kids learn TPNN, the family has to kludge together an adaptation to the language barrier using their own cheap and shitty tech that they brought with them, and trying to interface it with Griiahkah's ancient tech. Which should prove amusing.

Could they try another city, one more familiar with humans, with more people who speak English or other Terran languages? Yes. But A. This is more fun. B. By the time the mother feels like giving up, the kids are already adapting and have friends. She's already moved them away from their friends once, she doesn't feel like doing it again. Also, for all their struggles, life on Traipah really is better than life on their home colony.

One last note: There are parts of the story I've written already that are too good to scrap. Like the scene where they're trying to figure out the bathrooms, that's just too hilarious to leave out. :-)

1 = Things on Traipah are designed to last a hella long time.
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
This post is about the different Aspects of Shao'Kehn/Djao'Kain. I've put the older ones under the cut, leaving the newest ones visible. You will need this link if you don't already know IPA.

Full list under the cut )

17. Shao'Jo [ʃaʊ dʒoʊ] AKA The Musician – While Djao'Ide dances, Shao'Jo plays the music She dances to.

18. Shao'Vara [ʃaʊ vɑ: ə] AKA The Masked Stranger – Represents silence, mystery, the unknown, The Void, and death. Wearing a faceless, eyeless mask made of Creation Onyx, Her skin white as bleached bone (differing from most Shao'Kehn Aspects that way; most are brown skinned), Her nails yellowed and cracked, Her hair long and black and sleek (different texture from most SK Aspects), and one breast is tiny and undeveloped while the other is withered and saggy. She is almost skin and bones, having very little muscle or fat mass.

Shao'Vara stands ramrod straight and unmoving on a pedestal of Creation Onyx on a cliff overlooking a black, roiling sea. There are two of the three Traipahni moons in the sky overhead; one is waxing, the other is waning. The third is technically there, but is. Both moons are low in the sky and look tired. (The third is not there, to represent the dead.) The wind blows, but Her hair does not move even a little. She in unaffected by the cold. Shao'Vara does not move, does not speak, but She listens (though She gives no indication that She is doing so). The only part of Shao'Vara that ever moves is an ancient, tattered black death shroud behind Her (on Traipah, their death shrouds are black, not white); what part of Her it's attached to, if any, is unknown. Even it barely ever moves.

The cliff She stands on is an island, with a rickety rope and wood plank bridge leading to it from the mainland. Sometimes She lets you walk back to the
mainland when you're done conversing with Her; other times, the bridge collapses, or the part of the island you're standing on crumbles into the sea, taking you with it. Still other times, the whole planet crumbles and tumbles into a black hole, without Shao'Vara moving at all.

Her ramrod straightness and stiffness represents rigor mortis. The occasionally-moving funerary shroud represents the stage after rigor where the body goes soft again, as well as everything else a funeral shroud represents.

She will not let you approach too closely. She will not let you remove Her mask. You probably would not like what you saw behind Her mask if you did get a chance to remove it; whatever is back there is likely too horrible to imagine.

It is unknown if She could speak if She wanted to; if She did, the voice would probably be horrifying to hear. And since She represents a corpse, She would never move. She can respond, though, in other ways: the sudden appearance of animals, for instance, or other omens; changes to your own body; changes to Her body; changes to the landscape or sky; etc. Or perhaps intense visions. She's representative of the unknown and the mysterious, so anything is possible with Shao'Vara.

Shao'Vara's Aspect name comes from Shao'Kehn and from "vara," the TPNN word for "any."

Yes, there is another Death Aspect, Shyao'Shyo, but She is much different from Shao'Vara. Shyao'Shyo is very friendly and personable, especially compared to Shao'Vara. Shyao'Shyo comforts the dead and dying; Shao'Vara is the discomfort of death incarnate.


Aug. 6th, 2015 06:27 am
fayanora: Djyahlah (Djyahlah)
On Tumblr, I added a comment to a post about neo-pantheons by mentioning my own, and someone said something that prompted me to give a reply I feel is worth repeating here.

Their bit:

that’s sort of what i’ve done with mine, i created two deities for a story of mine and i feel really connected to them. though i’d have to worship them quite differently to how their followers in the story do, as theres a lot of sacrifice and not-very-nice things done in their names. still, it’d be interesting to try.

have your deities shown many signs of their existence? and if you don’t mind me asking do you have any tips on staying sure of your path and not doubting your deities and stuff? that’s my problem at the moment i think.

My response:

Yes, actually, they have. At least, my main one has. Djao’Kain [ʒaʊ-keɪn] is Xer name, and I have at least one friend who has had conversations with Xer in their own mind. (I specify that because anyone who talks to me can have Djao’Kain talk with them through me.) Also, the same friend told me once about a time when she read about something going on in Iraq during the most recent war there, I don’t remember what exactly, but it prompted her to ask Djao’Kain to deal with the situation non-violently, and the next day there was this humongous sandstorm in the area, disrupting whatever it was she asked that favor for. It’s just the sort of thing Djao’Kain would do, too, being a chaos Deity.

As to your other questions, it helps that Djao’Kain has left a copy of Xerself inside my brain, so I can talk to Xer whenever I please. But yeah, I do still struggle with “is Xe real or just one of my Aspects?” When I’m feeling doubtful, I generally resolve it by remembering that Xe is very useful either way, seeing as - among other things - Xe has acted like a live-in psychologist for me, and Xe once stopped me from attempting suicide. Oh yeah, and Djao’Kain has this interesting ability to know stuff about me before I do, and hint strongly at it (essentially beating it against my head for months or years until it gets through my thick skull), which is useful.

As an example, I was referring to Djao’Kain as “the Deity with Multiple Personality Order” due to Xer having a bunch of different Aspects with different personalities (yet all tied in together via a hub Aspect)* - and the Ah’Koi Bahnis people of Xer planet Traipah showed a marked tendency to be healthy Multiple systems - for YEARS before I even knew Multiple systems could be healthy, years before I knew the members of Multiple systems could coexist without memory gaps and communicate with one another without help from an outside person, and years before I realized that - DUH - the reason I was so frustrated and confused was because I was laboring under the delusion that I was a singlet.

Then, a more recent example is that from the beginning, the AKB were quite obviously on the autism spectrum compared to humans, years before I knew what autism/asperger’s was, let alone knew I had it. And I’m certain Djao’Kain was the one putting these things in. For some reason, Xe can’t tell me these things directly, can only sneak things through into my writing and other ideas, and I have to figure it out based on Xer clues. But who knows how long it would have taken me without Xer help?

Then, also, I remind myself of the evidence outlined above. And also remembering that all (or at least most) Deities began as someone’s imagining, so why should my having created Djao’Kain make Xer any less real than others? Always assuming, of course, that Djao’Kain did not simply claim me as Xer own, put the ideas about the Yahgahn faith and the planet it hails from in my head, and let me take the credit for “inventing” Xer and the others. Which, now I think on it, is totally something Xe would do.

* = Djao’Kain: Buy one Deity, get like - what’s it up to now? Seventeen? Eighteen!? - get eighteen free! | Djao’Kain: When you want a Deity that is a Russian nesting doll! | Djao’Kain: Pantheon in a box!

Which actually, looking up the exact number of Aspects for that joke made me realize I haven't posted about the latest one, and haven't even written Her into the official list yet. Hell, I had to hunt like a mofo to find the right file just to remember Her name. So, a post on that soon.
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
I just had a funny thought: Since Djao'Kain is a Multiple, with - currently - 18 Aspects, if Her worshipers on Traipah decided to stop believing in all other Deities but Her, and rewrote things so that She and Her various Aspects were the only Deity in their faith... would that make them monotheists? Or polytheists?

Funny names

Aug. 6th, 2015 12:56 am
fayanora: Steph laugh by ponyboy (Steph laugh)
So [personal profile] ysabetwordsmith made a post of this link about funny names on the Crazy Horse surrender ledger, and noted how some of those "obviously fake" names could be real names, given some of the givens about the cultural differences. That, mixed with memories of the weird names a lot of Puritans used to give their kids, prompted an idea that made me make this comment:

Okay, now I'm picturing a funny situation on Traipah. Bit of background: It's a common naming convention among those of the dominant culture, Yahgahn, to give kids "nest names" that they'll likely shed as adults when they pick adult names. These names tend to mean things like "Beloved" or "Third child" or various simple things. But of course, with lots of people in the world, and especially in big families, that can lead to there being like, 14 "Beloved"s in a single class at school. (Which come to think of it, means there might be a secondary convention of nicknames based on something more unique, but let's not get sidetracked.)

Anyway, my idea was that it might become popular on Traipah, after situations like that become common enough, that they might come up with more interesting nest names. Sure, at first it might be something similar to the Amerindian naming convention of things like "Wild Bull" or "The Sound of Running Water," but the funny idea I had was this:

People deciding to name their kids names that mean things like "Insert Unique Name Here," "I Couldn't Be Arsed To Think of a Better Name," "Pile of Ancient Scrolls," "The One With Purple Hair and Green Stripes," "Hopefully I Won't Disown My Mother For This Name," or others along those lines. Like, I can see the 12th kid in a large family being named "My Parents Aren't Going To Remember My Name Anyway." Or just, like, name a kid a line quoted from one's favorite book, like a kid named "It Was The Best of Times, It Was The Worst of Times," or "It Was A Dark And Stormy Night."

And given how their culture doesn't have any shame regarding sex, I could see some people using names like "Wedding Night Threesome," "We Were Bored," "We Were Drunk," "Hope Xe Ends Up a Better Lover Than Xer Father," "Forgot To Pull Out," "I Don't Know Who My Daddy Is," "I Have Three Daddies," "Conceived In Bondage," "The Condom Broke," "Mommy's Best Orgasm (Was The Night I Was Conceived)," "Unbreakable Love, Breakable Condom," "Never Fuck On A Tin Roof During A Thunderstorm," "The Fastest Little Swimmer Was Me," "I Got Lucky, So Did My Dad," "The Only Good Thing To Come Out Of My Parents' Marriage," "Best Damn Hatesex Ever," or "Should've Masturbated Instead."

Other possible names: "Sounded Like A Good Idea At The Time," "I'd Better Appreciate That My Mother Went Through Twelve Months Of Hell For Me" (Ah'Koi Bahnis gestation is 12 months), "That's The Last One I'm Ever Having," or "Mommy's First C-Section."

One that would work for them if they had capitalism and certificates of deposit would be "Made A Withdrawl At The Sperm Bank, Invested It In A 250-Year CD." (AKB can live up to 250 years.)

(Also a genderless version of "My Daddy's The Mailman" could work too.)
fayanora: Steph laugh by ponyboy (Steph laugh)
I just had a funny thought: An Ah'Koi Bahnis, new to Earth, doesn't really understand the concept of gender, keeps using the wrong pronouns. Gets frustrated at one frustrated human and goes "Well how do you expect me to know which you are? One guidebook says males have a grahbihn and females have a duen, but it is rude to ask. Another guidebook says it is more complicated than that, and some females have a grahbihn but no duen, and some men have a duen but no grahbihn. Fuck this, I'm just going to use 'djai' and 'djair' and you can all just get used to it."
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
I keep finding, more and more all the time, that worldbuilding and/or writing in my Traipah storyverse is how I deal with things in my own life I need to work on. Sometimes it's something in a story that points to something in me I need to pay attention to, like how for years and years there were things happening in the stories or worldbuilding stuff that had to do with Multiplicity, long before I consciously recognized that that's what it was, and that it meant I was a Multiple too. Or how the entire societal structure of Traipah is ideal for me, or how the Ah'Koi Bahnis are basically all autistic by human standards.

Or, as in my latest project, a short story about a human visiting Traipah and going to something called Tahl'Bahn Continental Civic Park (like a National Park, but Traipah doesn't really have nations), which is in fact a centuries-old graveyard of sorts, where all the trees are grave markers, because they have a number of ways of disposing of the dead that are eco-friendly and end up with the remains being used to feed the Grave Tree, or "Memory Tree" (Coi'liir'morHK) as they call it. (Including Resomation, which is a real thing on Earth, and when I die I want to be Resomated.) So this particular civic park is a centuries-old forest made by people, because it was a former strip mine that nature was having little luck reclaiming after the Reformation, so they planted soil there, and started planting Memory Trees. I'm also going to include something I read about recently, where the dead body is put in the fetal position inside a biodegradable pod, and the sapling is planted just right so the roots go into the pod and use the decomposing body as food. (I even have a version that combines the pod idea with the Resomation idea.) And it's a very popular place to put people who have died, and as I mentioned it is centuries old, so here you have miles and miles of forest that's a mix of trees of all ages, and species. (Because everyone has their own idea of what kind of tree they want to feed when they die.) There may even be family trees: ancient trees that keep getting new remains added to their soil every time a member of that family dies. So, basically, you have new life arising from death, in a place that was once stripped bare of all life in the hunt for coal.

Now, some people have commented that this is a creepy idea, that such a forest would be creepy. And as I told one such person, yeah, sure it's creepy, if you live in a culture that fears death and shuns the dead. But Traipahni society isn't like that. The people of Traipah are very Pagan, both in the polytheist sense and the "revering nature" sense,1 and while this giant forest and others like it are pretty popular - worldwide - on Traipah, they generally do not have that desire to segregate the dead and the living the way we do. There are Memory Trees inside Traipahni cities, just like normal trees in Portland are everywhere, and several very popular Memory Tree species are fruit trees. There are even entire Memory Tree orchards, their fruits mainly used for strictly religious/spiritual purposes. This isn't seen as even a tiny bit creepy to the people of Traipah, because they're not afraid of the dead. They're not afraid of ghosts. They believe that ghosts can happen, but they aren't afraid of them. Their basic view of our fear of ghosts would be like an adult's view of a child who was afraid of the dark. (Or maybe a child afraid of rabbits.) To them, ghosts are harmless at worst, revered as proof of the afterlife at best.

For me, this represents both a little of my own views, and views I would like to have. I am afraid of dying, because that's the culture I was raised in. But I want to be unafraid, or at least merely nervous as opposed to the overwhelming terror I feel when I let myself really think about dying, by the time it happens. The Ah'Koi Bahnis... I wouldn't say they're unafraid of dying, but the subject of death isn't segregated from the rest of life like it is with us. Us, we put our dead in special areas underground and/or behind tall fences, often outside city limits if we can, marking the graves with stark stone slabs or statues, as if to highlight the fact that they are places of death. All graveyards I've seen have a kind of uniform, sterile, non-living quality to them, even when they have trees and bushes in them. And we don't talk about death much unless we have to, and when we do, we often joke about it to disguise our discomfort and fear.

Whereas the people of Traipah consider death just another part of life, both figuratively and literally. The dead are not viewed like a candle flame snuffed out forever, but as just another form of life. In fact, to them dying is like the reverse of being born, but they don't view conception and birth the same way we do, either; they don't view it as creating a new life, but as creating a new vessel for an existing life-form... a life form of pure energy, an immortal spirit come to have a mortal experience, which it will do again and again after it "dies." This is deeply ingrained in their culture. It even bleeds into aspects of their culture that aren't immediately apparent. Like, thanking the spirits that once inhabited what has become their food, for their sacrifice, and wishing them well on their journey in the "between-life."2 This makes sense for animals eaten by the Duenicallo and Shaokennah, but even the Ah'Koi Bahnis do this for the plants they eat. In farming/gardening, the person picking fruits or removing other parts of a plant that will continue to live after this is done to them, that person will ask permission first before harvesting, and then apologize for the necessity and thank the plant for its sacrifice. It is considered just as heinous to mistreat an animal or plant as it is to mistreat a person, but most Ah'Koi Bahnis (though herbivores themselves) have no problem with the Duenicallo or Shaokennah eating meat, so long as the animals are treated with respect and compassion, and the proper rituals are observed (those thanks and apologies mentioned before), because they don't view plants as being any less intelligent or less worthy of respect than animals, and therefore see little difference between killing an animal for food as they do their own killing a plant for food. Also, they're very friendly with the Duenicallo, and the Duenicallo are obligate carnivores. And, thus, most AKB would look down their noses at anyone who claimed that merely being a meat eater was a lapse of morality. (Though they freak the fuck out at factory farms. The cruelty aside, the very notion of treating any living being like a mere product or resource is utterly reprehensible to them, and so, much about capitalism in general would have them going ballistic on people. The animal cruelty would turn that into "going nuclear" on people.)3

I got a little off track there. But basically, living beings are spirits residing in a vessel.4

So yeah, I strive to change my own view of death 100% over to the Traipahni view of it, to transmute the terror of dying to something easier to deal with, by the time my time finally comes. Because while I do believe those same things, it's not the culture I grew up with, and so it's not deeply ingrained like it should be.

Anyway, that's all for now.

Note: "MorHKahr seh Coi'liir" means "Forest of Memory," and in IPA it is pronounced Moʊrxɑ:r se kɔɪLɪəʳ (The x being a voiceless velar frictive.)

1 = Monotheism didn't exist on Traipah until the humans introduced it, and even then it never really took off; monotheists are an extreme minority on Traipah, and what few there are are more pantheistic than anything else. The closest Traipah came to inventing monotheism was a bi-theistic religion that was once popular.

2 = Since they view death as part of an infinite cycle in the incarnation cycle of spirits, they don't call it the afterlife, they call it the between-life, as in "between one lifetime and the next." It is viewed as a place for spirits to rest and relax before reincarnating again.

3 = Now, you might think with this, that their attitude toward abortion is pretty stern, and... well... you wouldn't be wrong, at least insofar as it applies to species native to Traipah. But it's... complicated. The Ah'Koi Bahnis have a remarkable degree of control of their own reproductive system (well, all races of AKB except the Yaingah do), and if they don't want to get pregnant, they simply don't. Whereas the other two sophont species can only get pregnant at certain times of the year, so if they avoid having sex at those times, they don't have to worry about getting pregnant. The Yaingah race of AKB don't have that ability. But there's nothing against contraception. Unlike a lot of humans, Traipahni people generally don't have any special feelings about conception. In fact, abortions up to a certain point are perfectly acceptable to most of them, because they generally don't believe the spirit has "moved in" to the body it's created, until the embryo is sufficiently developed to be able to survive outside the womb, with help. Abortions are always legal there, right up until just before birth, though any abortion done after the first quarter is generally frowned upon. (AKB have a 12 month gestation, divided into 4 quarters of 3 months each.) Socially speaking, AKB don't care what the other two species do in regards to abortion. Legally speaking, abortion is legal any time before birth. Since Traipahni people can impregnate themselves as well as others, paternity is hard to determine, and the father has no rights regarding the baby before it's born anyway, because the sanctity of bodily autonomy is one of the major sacred laws. The only time abortion is considered murder is if it's done to the pregnant person against their will. (Which also violates the sanctity of bodily autonomy.) And a conception resulting from rape or coercion/force is legally considered an artifact of the assault, and so there are no negative social or legal consequences of either aborting it or choosing to let it live, nor for either giving away the child or choosing to keep it and raise it.

4 = Until an outside spirit chooses to "move in" to a baby in a womb, the fetus is considered to be entirely filled with the mother's own spirit. And even after the outside spirit has moved in, the body still contains the mother's spirit as well, and since the mother was there first, she has first claim over it, until after birth. Then it "belongs" entirely to the baby's spirit.
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
I have updated The Yahgahn Statements of Faith (DW) (LJ), and Basic Sophont Responsibilities (DW) (LJ). I added the following to the Statements:

As a sub-point of "all sophonts have inherent worth and dignity, and are my brethren," I added the following points:

- What a person does with their own body, and who a person chooses to share their body with, and how, is nobody's concern but their own, and/or of the person or people they choose to share it with, regardless of their age. If they are capable of reason, capable of making choices, their choices are to be respected and not opposed or hindered, no matter what those choices are, so long as they do not violate the bodily integrity of another. (Assaults to the brain are included in this. Intrusions into the mind via telepathy or mere emotional manipulation are a bit of a grey area.)
- What a person wishes to have done, or not have done, to their body, is to be respected even in death, no matter what those choices are, so long as they do not violate the bodily integrity of another. The autonomy and integrity of a sophont's body is not to be violated, regardless of their age, as long as they are capable of reason, and capable of making choices for themselves. Any form of violation is an affront.

I also added this under "knowledge is sacred":

- As such, destruction of knowledge or art is an abomination and cannot be tolerated.

And the following was added to the Responsibilities:

9. Respect the autonomy and integrity of the bodies of your fellow sophonts. It is the most fundamental right for people of all ages to do with their own body as they please, and to refuse to have things done to their body without their permission even after they have died. Any form of violation of this right is an affront. Not permitting anyone who has achieved the ability to reason to do with their body as they will, counts as a violation of their bodily autonomy as well. Their choices in regard to their own body are theirs to make, and it is not your place to question those choices, nor to interfere.

Also modified the wording of #6 to add "or other things" to the list of potential differences.


Feb. 12th, 2015 09:26 am
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
Just spent several hours coming up with yet another Traipahni syllabary. Why? To simplify things, of course. First, the characters are more unique, making it harder to confuse them, which should make it easier to read. The characters are also simpler whenever possible, making them easier to write. And I've introduced a syllable seperator character (what the apostrophe does when I write it in Roman alphabet, for instance pah'fah'shen'tah) that eliminates the need for characters like AHL, OOR, EER, and so on. So there are only 46 characters in this version, including punctuation marks. Whereas Ahndahn's Alphabet has like 56 or so, and Dven'Bahnis has at least twice that many. Also consolodated the hard H, hard K, and hard G into one character, as they all sound identical (like clearing your throat).

Oh, and I came up with a cursive version too. Actually I did that one first, to give me ideas for the non-cursive version. Since some of the characters in the non-cursive version are easy to write, but impossible in the cursive version, some sounds have entirely different characters between the two versions. My favorite part is that, in both AA and DB syllabaries, the characters for H, J, L, and M are the same character just turned at different angles, which was always confusing. But in this new syllabary, I was very careful about rejecting characters that are too similar to one another. Which involved using some of the cursive characters in the non-cursive version (or non-cursive versions of the cursive characters).

I hereby dub this new syllabary Glik'Mwihl, which means Simple Word.

I have yet to enter Glik'Mwihl into a computer. I shall do that later.
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
In my constructed language Trai'Pahg'Nan'Nog, they have one pronoun, djai ( ʒeɪ ) and its posessive form djair ( ʒeəʳ ). But pronouns can get confusing even for humans, so I came up with an idea that is apparently called obviative pronouns. It's a series of suffixes to denote different people in the convo.

-ardj ( ɑ:rʒ ) = a second person in the convo
-airsh ( eəʳʃ ) = a third person
-arḥ ( ɑ:rḥ ) = a fourth person
-yurth ( yɜ:ʳð ) = a fith person

Beyond that, you'd be getting into "silly" territory.

Whichever suffix you use is assigned to a certain person, and should remain assigned to that person if reasonable. This assignation applies to the posessive form as well.

Anyway, let's see how that looks.

Without obviative pronouns:

I saw djai take djair arm and guide djai to djair pencil.

Confusing, eh? Lots of meanings. Let's see them with obviative pronouns:

I saw djai take djair-ardj arm and guide djai-ardj to djair-ardj pencil.
(I saw [person 1] take [person 2's] arm and guide [person 2] to [person 2's] pencil.)

Or maybe the situation is even more complex:

I saw djai take djair-ardj arm and guide djai-ardj to djair-airsh pencil.
(I saw [person 1] take [person 2's] arm and guide [person 2] to [person 3's] pencil.)

Or another sentence: I saw djai and djai and djai talking with djai and djai, about sada ("their" always plural in TPNN) earlier conversation about djair pencil.

With o-pronouns:

I saw djai and djai-ardj and djai-airsh talking with djai-arḥ and djai-yurth, about sada ("their" always plural in TPNN) earlier conversation about djair-arḥ pencil.

(I saw [person 1] and [person 2] and [person 3] talking with [person 4] and [person 5] about their earlier conversation about [person 4's] pencil.)

And so on and so forth.
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
Text and picture reposted from this Tumblr post. It might make more sense if you read the Tumblr version, since I think this excerpt makes references to things in other peoples' comments, and I don't feel like reposting the entire thing here.

The original picture:

My part of the post:

I totally get Tedd’s shock. I became aware of the concept of transgender pretty early on, around 15 or 16, but it didn’t really fit me. I started identifying as a trans woman online more out of it being the closest I knew to what I was, but privately had no idea what to think of myself as. At least, not until I read about the term “hermaphrodite.” Well, actually, the progression went more like this: A. Read term “hermaphrodite,” started using it to describe the people of this story I’d started to write, and their religion. B. Did not apply the term to myself. C. Figured out I was trans or something like it. D. Became obsessed with that story I was writing enough that I adopted the religion I’d made for them. E. Realized only then that I was closer to “hermaphrodite” than I was to male or female, and so privately began to identify as such. F. Realized I’m Otherkin, as one of the Ah’Koi Bahnis people I was writing about, which deepened the connection to “hermaphrodite.” G. Didn’t hear the term gender-fluid til… well, it’s hard to say. Only a few years ago, I think. I think I read it on Tumblr, but I can’t be sure. I have a bad habit of hearing information relevant to me and then watching it take months or even years to process it enough that I finally think “Hey wait, that’s me!”
A whole lot more )

Representation matters!

One more note )
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
On my scifi world Traipah, the Ah'Koi Bahnis people are all autistic by human standards, but since they've always been that way, their whole society is set up for them. There is a neurological condition among them called Hyeh'theydj'mah [hje ðeɪʒ mʌ] Disorder that makes some of them more like neurotypical humans, and for their culture is a disorder.

Anyway, here I'm gonna go with a possible article from that world on the subject, from a less enlightened era in their culture:

Hyeh'theydj'mah Disorder gives its sufferers diminished sensory input, makes it difficult for them to find a job by not having a proper special interest (because they know a little about a lot of things, and what use is that?) and by their being unable to hyperfocus like a normal person. They have to rely on body language rather than empathic knowledge or verbal cues, in order to know a person's feelings, and of course normal people don't give the kind of body language cues that would really be useful for someone with Hyeh'theydj'mah Disorder.

The condition also tends to give its sufferers a preoccupation with talking about unimportant and often uninteresting things like the weather. Any buffoon can tell by looking what the weather is doing, and such a topic is only interesting when something unusual like a tropical storm is on its way. They also tend to have a preoccupation with talking about what other people are doing, but not about their work; more likely what they're wearing, who they're dating, what they do in the bedroom, and other highly personal things like that, thus coming across as very creepy.

People with Hyeh'theydj'mah Disorder have an unsettling tendency to look other people right in the eyes, and show other signs of having little grasp of the concept of "personal space," such as touching people without getting consent first. Often they cannot simply sit with friends and quietly do their own thing while gently enjoying the friend's company, at least not for long without becoming bored or frustrated; instead, they feel compelled to focus solely on conversing with the other person, and get irritated if the other person does not do the same. This is exacerbated by their compulsion to touch other people, even if the other person is a total stranger to them.

Those who suffer this condition tend to be bad about boundaries in general, and since they have at least one diminished sense, and often all their senses are diminished, are less prone to sensory overload and meltdowns, thus can drive a normal person into sensory overloads and meltdowns with absurd ease. They will then often become irritated by the consequences of their actions, being unable to see what is obvious to normal people, and thus are unable to see the obvious signs of impending overload/meltdown. This irritation can, if left uncountered, cause the sufferer to make an already bad situation worse by continuing to invade the normal person's personal space.

There is no known cure for Hyeh'theydj'mah Disorder, though treatment can help them become more functional in society. Negative reinforcement can train them out of their habit of direct eye contact, or if they are high functioning enough to begin with, they can be taught how to focus on some other part of a person's body so as to not look people directly in the eyes. Teachers with children suspected of having this disorder can enforce alone time or strap the unfortunate soul to a chair so they won't invade the personal space of others.

Teachers are also encouraged to grab their hands when they attempt to touch without consent, and say "quiet hands" as they do so to attempt to teach them respect for boundaries.

Sufferers also do not need to stim, due to their diminished capacities, and therefore should be encouraged to stim anyway so as to not disturb others. If the child is resistant to this, keep trying. If they are obstinate about it, something called "spanking" may be used; this is using the hand or a paddle to hit the rear end of the child in order to cause pain. Yes, using this on a normal child would be unthinkable, but it does not hurt these children as much as a normal child would be hurt by it, and is effective on this sort of child because they have a more physical communication than normal children do, due to their verbal learning deficits and their touch compulsion.

Raising a child with this disorder can be extremely taxing, frustrating, exhausting, and emotionally draining. Therefore, there are many Orders that have books, pamphlets, and other reading materials to help, and other services like specialized day care centers, stress counselling, and classes on how to care for these damaged souls. There are also locations where you can anonymously drop off such problematic children for groups such as The Order of Nahtahdjaiz to care for them if you have come to your wits end with such a child. The Order of Nahtahdjaiz is dedicated to the safety and well-being of all children, even mentally disabled children such as these.

It is unknown what causes Hyeh'theydj'mah Disorder. Some suspect certain medications taken by those who are pregnant or nursing may cause the disorder, but the evidence is inconclusive. And without knowing the cause, the cure is equally elusive. So until a cure is discovered, we simply have to be patient with these poor damaged souls and find somewhere for them to try to be useful.
fayanora: Aghast (Aghast)

There's an extinct sub-species of Ah'Koi Bahnis - called the Mahg'lih'mihn - that have long arms and short legs with feet hands. I saw the above picture and got this image in my head of a tribe of them hanging from trees aiming bows and arrows at people on the ground with their feet hands.
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
I woke up early the other day and decided to draw Nahtahdjaiz, the Yahgahn "Child Goddess of Children." I experimented some more with layers, putting the skin coloring and some of the hair coloring in a layer beneath the black outlines. A layer of red at 20% opacity was also added just above the main coloring layer. And there's also another layer of skin color atop everything else, in some of the pictures. In one version, She has freckles. In another, none. In several other versions, She has stripes and spots of varying colors.

This is my favorite of the stripes and spots versions:

Under the cut )

Freckled version:

Under the cut )

Completely spotless version:

Under the cut )

Oh, and Her eyes are awesome. They're like opals. Here is a closeup:


Jan. 17th, 2014 06:01 pm
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
I finished my picture of Kiishiiya, my Eternal Guardian Spirit. The Eternal Guardian Spirits, created by Djao'Kain, take whatever form comforts the ones they protect. I myself am comforted by protectors that look like monsters, so in this picture She takes the form of a naga - IE, She is humanoid from the waist up and a snake from the waist down.

I was going to have spikes coming out of Her back and shoulders, but Her horned crown took so much effort to do that I decided against it. (And yes, I used a picture of Aaliyah as Queen of the Vampires as the model for this picture.)

This time, the shading was a lot easier because all I had to do was get the right colors solidly next to each other, then I used the Smear tool to mix the two colors together. So it took a lot less work than the Shao'Kehn picture did.

Here She is:

Under the cut for size )


fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
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