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Castinis (WIP)

on Sun Apr 01, 2018 7:05 pm
Nation Name: Castinis
Demonym: Castinian
Capital: Bagrada, Maqae
Population: 40,000,000
Global Status: Great power; trade giant

Ethnicities:
Human (Castinian) - 80%
Human (Flamellen) - 10%
Human (Other Nationalities) - 5%
Other - 5%

National Language: Castinian

Official Languages: Castinian, Flamellen, and Common Tongue.

Economic System: Mercantile state, with trade and taxation controlled and reported to a group of government officials called the Disciples.

Government Type: Theocratic Oligarchy
Castinis is comprised of nine states. Eight of them are overseen by religious leaders, all women, who are known as the Vessels. They go by no other name other than the numbered state they represent. Vessels are chosen by a group called the Disciples: eight men who serve as prophets and directors of the government. These men are responsible for finding the Vessels when any of them expire. They oversee developments in each state with a sharp eye, and are known to disrupt rulings and practices that they see as unbecoming to the country. The Vessels are given freedom to rule, leading to a large variety in state laws and regulations. These states are closed off from visitors for the most part, leaving the practices of each Vessel a mystery to the international public. The Disciples are in control of the ninth state, a center of trade that sits comfortably at the border of Castinis and Flamellen.

Legislature: The Disciples

Current Ruler: The Eight

Sigil / Standard: A dark-blue sky adorned with eight yellow stars that form an eye, forming the constellation of the ‘many-god.’

House Words: "Pray to the stars, for the many-god will be watching."

Currency: Qa, a coin based currency.

Symbology:
-Colors: Dark blue, yellow, black.
-Tree: Shajala (translates to "life tree"), a sturdy tree with ebony bark that can survive in even the harshest climates of Castinis. Its leaves, dark blue in hue, shine beautifully in the light of the moon and stars. Its roots go deep, and in many states it is illegal to cut them down. Some communities are centered around the tree, as it is often used as a tool for communal prayer. At night, many will congregate before bed to pray for the Vessels and the guidance of the many-god.
-Flower: Tawnaji (translates to "glowgrass"), is a brush plant that is scattered across the desert. In the daytime it is unremarkable, but at night it glows blue, emitting a source of light that has guided many travelers to safety. Some take on pilgrimages, following the paths of tawnaji to seek enlightenment.
-Animal: Mahi, a trusted companion beast of many. Capable of enduring harsh travel and surviving off of little to no water, the mahi is a beloved animal by many. It is a hoofed animal, trots on four legs, and is an omnivore. Many outsiders view the beast as horse-like, though its shaggy coat and massive, curled horns differentiate it from its (maybe) distant relative. They form bonds quickly with their companions, as long as they are treated and fed well, but are often aggressive towards strangers. If cared for properly, a mahi is a worthy companion.

Religion: Polytheism. In Castinis, they do not name their gods, for they believe that it would be as impossible as naming all the stars in the sky. The Vessels, who are only given a number to represent themselves, are said to each be possessed by one of these spirits. Different schools of thought on this process vary by state. Some believe a Vessel captures many gods, others believe they are only possessed by one. Some only believe in goddesses, others only in gods. Belief varies, but the scope of their religion allows room for these contemplations. It is generally agreed that only a Vessel could know the answer to these questions. Of course, Vessels only see the public eye once in their lifetime. When they are ‘discovered’ a great parade is held as they are welcomed to the state they control. Once they have been processed, the Vessel is contained in a palace for the rest of their life. Only on rare occasions have individuals laid eyes on a Vessel after this point, and a majority of them are honor guards, men and women of extraordinary value who provide for the Vessel’s every need.

Social and Geographic Statistics:

Social Mobility: Limited based on location; some states are run similarly to a feudal system, others are entirely capitalistic. The ninth state, where a majority of the populace resides, has a much more stable avenue of opportunity. Any trade that can be thought of is practiced in the cities. Rising into the ranks of nobility is difficult, and nearly impossible, but it can be done. A majority of the rich are wealthy due to their families, but there are various historic examples who have become successful traders and profitable investors.

Political Activity: Restricted in the states run by Vessels. Most states allow a freedom of speech, though certain displays are highly discouraged. Vessels may be influenced by how the people respond, but it is ultimately their decision on how they would like to rule. The ninth state, run by the Disciples, has much more opportunity for political involvement. New Disciples are often chosen from the ranks of nobility, or candidates with a spotless resume that suggests a stream of successes. The local populace can become more involved in the political process, and, on occasion, the Disciples may listen.

Geographic Mobility: Castinians are generally allowed to apply for a state transfer if they have enough wealth to pay for any involved expenses. Most choose to live in their provinces by choice, as Vessels are figures of worship. Some of the more zealous supporters are willing to live in subpar conditions just so they can be closer to the Vessel.

THE NINE STATES:

Maqae: The capital and trade center of Castinis. The largest amount of diversity is found in Maqae, as its policies are far less xenophobic than the other states. There are several small villages and hamlets that live on the outskirts of the capital, but a majority of its citizens live in the center, where business thrives. The Disciples, an integral part of the government, operates within Maqae, working with the courts and mobility to enact their decrees and make their word known. It is a great event when a Disciple retires and a new one is selected, as the process can take nearly a year. They are usually selected from nobility, though in the past there have been outliers. During these times, business booms, drawing in people from around the world to trade exotic goods and rub hands with the rich and powerful. If one can afford it, anyone can live in Maqae. Many, however, populate the streets and slums in the lower parts of the city. Maqae represents the beauty of Castinis but it also displays the ugly. A look at the great towers hovering over the dilapidated apartments is evidence enough.

Nariin: The First Vessel rules here, a loved figure by many. She is called the Gatekeeper by some, as Nariin is considered the gateway to the glory of Castinis. Many from Flamelle travel across the borders and through the mountain pass, reaching Nariin before any other state. While most intend to move on and travel to Maqae for more opportunity, some are drawn by its charm. Though foreigners are forever restricted to the outskirts of Nariin, they can still live long and profitable lives interacting with newcomers and working the trades. In the center of Nariin, a great, walled city borders the river. Within, the First Vessel lives. To live in her presence is considered a great blessing, as the streets are considered holy ground. Many live around the walls of city, hoping to absorb any goodness the First Vessel emits. The lucky few are allowed to live within the idyllic city, where some say the streets are paved with gold.

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