Page name: Renshunese Culture and History [Logged in view]
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A Cultural and Historical view of
Renshunese Culture and History
A Social and Philosophical Look at the Country of Renshunan
Rulership: Non-standard, by Clan
Alignment: By Clan, most commonly Lawful Neutral
Images courtesy of Wizards of the Coast / D&D
Images by Wayne Reynolds and Raven Mimura, compliments of http://www.wizards.com/dnd/ Wizards of the Coast/D&D. From 'Oriental Adventures' by James Wyatt
KAIU CLAN (Crab / Squid)
Kaiu Lands: The Kaiu Clan is a naval-only clan of sailors and seafarers that operate only in coastal cities and on the open Straits of Renshunan
Kaiu Leadership and Government:
Kaiu Champions and Legends:
LUNG CLAN (Dragon, Lion)
Lung (Dragon) Clan Cities:
Rugosi (river name is the same)
Asako (river and river basin name is the same)
Lung Leadership and Government:
Lung Champions and Legends:
SHIRU CLAN (Pheonix, Unicorn)
Shiru Clan Cities:
Rehshunan (capitol of province)
Currently uninhabitable by humans, because of the cursed Tainted Lands, and the Stain.
Shiru Leadership and Government:
Shiru Champions and Legends:
KUNI CLAN (Crane, Unicorn)
Kuni Clan Cities:
Kuni Leadership and Government:
Kuni Champions and Legends:
ATAKU CLAN (Scorpion, Mantis)
Ataku (Scorpion) Clan Cities:
Kage (high council residence)
Ataku Leadership and Government:
Ataku Champions and Legends:
The three major clans of Renshunan, along with the lesser neutrally-allied people of the southern Kuni, make up the entire populace of the once-majestic land of clan wars and extremes.
Though once a simple farming country, kept pure and whole by the scattered First Clans of the Utaku Forest Peninsula, the western regions were highly coveted by the early western ancestors of the Lung clan. Until recently, the First Clans were only remnants of farming family lines that still upheld ancestral virtues and agriculture above all other disciplines. Simplicity was key to this people's first generations. Temples were not built, but time was alloted throughout the day, every day, where family tribes would come together for meditation and daily meals and offerings, sometimes under the watch of a Tengu missionary that would arrive from eastern Shiro monestaries.
Since the first attacks on the Ataku region, it has become a more enduring and allied land, and family and village name no longer take such precedence over personal honour, or the honour of the Clan.
Though the name of the western-most city was adopted (because of its use in calling the western woodlands the singular Ataku Peninsula), its main strongholds on the land include both Owari and Ikoma, as well as the often-reinforced port cities of Iuchi and Ryoko.
Ataku warrior guilds now have many inland strongholds in taverns and other secret locations among both Owari and Ikoma, though the actual location of the sites are rumored to exist underground.
No true temples exist, though the people attempting to keep peace with other lands have adopted the caern-like deconstructible Aji for meditation and ancestral prayers, which appears like a pyramid with three to eight posts (most commonly four) that hold up a silk or parchment screen. The more elaborate of the structures have wood, tin-aluminum, stone or marble components, the more heavier subtances being used for poles on more permanent Aji.
Iuchi and Ryoko monks and clerics have become adept at both crafting and utilizing the Aji for spiritual and magical means, aided by Kuni Tengu that have refused the ban on Shirokuni assistance or alliance ordered by the Shiro Akiro, their high council.
Ataku martial tactics, although relatively newly wide-spread, involve use of stealth, patience, death and sneak attacks, and the employment of simple tools and materials as weaponry. Chains, farming tools, wagon parts, bowstaffs and herbalist poison use is commonly taught to Ataku warrior initiates that seek to learn the ways of martial skill in order to protect their lands and families.
The Lung, an extreme and defiant people who populate the land with many numbers, have long since stripped their own land of its already precious resources and soil, making it a sometimes unforgiving land without compromise. Seasonal rains leave plainslands washed instead of hydrated some years, and even the scholarly Tengu herbalists have difficulty in getting flourishing growth in their soil beds.
Monks of the Lung temples are adept as Wu Jen magics, fast and paralyzing martial tactics, water mastery (swimming, fishing without gear, holding one's breath, etc.), and most famously of all is the tibetan-like sand art, whose intricate soul-filled detail marks the significant powers of the cosmos. The images are laid out over a matter of weeks or even months, depending upon the severity of the soul's work, and after it is finished, it is amourized and gawked over by the people for mere days before it is demolished, and left to the foggy veil of the past, reasons for which are still unknown to the uninitiated.
Lung clerics, or Shugenja, revere the Lung dragons, a true draconic bloodline that often appear serpentine or fishlike, but are not half-blooded as many other Jashnian scholars might want to debate. Mainly neutral, chaotic, or pure-hearted dragons rest in the Asako river beds, lazily slinking past the huge stone monolithic balconies that line most riverside temple-ways. Winding stairwells, stone pathways, and sand gardens are the typical outer details of the temple's quiet regalia. The true extremes of color, motive and emotion lie in the land's clerical domains, the Aji, or caerns of the priesthood of Lung Dracotome ("Drak-ko-toe-may").
The Shiru, until recent generations, have remained a clan of peace, neutrality, and honest two-sided debates over often political or philosophical matters. Their southern neighbors, the Kuni, a similarly peace-loving lesser clan of mystics and seers, the Kuni are both protected and revered by the Tengu, the 'People Raven'.
When the first attacks from Lung on Utaku (Ataku) agricultural lands was received by both Shiru and Kuni clans, the response was the same, with absolute neutrality and opposition to strife. After long talks on many subjects, the Shiru and Kuni decided that fierce neutral aliiance was necessary for the violence to stop, becoming merely the Shirokuni Clan ('Clan of the River Pheonix').
Until recent Shiro construction of temples in the Kuni region, there were few, if not any at all. Kuni meditation, breathing and stretching excercises were often practiced in open natural settings, where ascetic monks could be closest to the other regions of existence, including astral travel and strange natural miracles, like invisibility and random levitation.
Taught of the mysteries of the many worlds by the great Tengu scholars, Kuni often have great ties to nature, ancestors, and divine powers, though often the knowledge of such does not come to a disciplined soul until it no longer is of such dire consequence in their lives.
The Shiro/Shiru people remain to this day both scholarly and philosophical, and with sometimes heated political debates taking place in the political centers, often placed near to the grandiose Shirokuni temples of monks.
The Shiro monks teach great power and agility in their martial tactics, but often aggression is only put into practice after all other possible outcomes are null and void.
The paralyzing tactics of Shiro monks, though similar to Lung martial moves, are not so dramatic, and are less apparent, as is the case with many other skills instilled in Shiro arts.
They are a clan of peace, assertiveness, honour, modesty, and quick and silent stealth. The Crescent Moon, a guild of honest and deadly ninja spies and warriors, is a well-kept secret, and the initiated are often renowned in seclusion among monk congregations.
Shirokuni temples are large and adorned in appearance to appease the ancestral deities and powers, and many in the southern lands of the Kuni take on a tinge of ancient greek style, though many are still commonly similar to japanese holy sites and structures. Though Tengu scholars are not as important to Shiro life as they are to Kuni, they are still respected, and often invited to sit at religious, political and community events in Shirokuni life.
Shiro temples and political buildings are often built on many-leveled, stairwell-connected platforms and buildings that often appear to be a part of the mountains and ledges they are constructed against, and the northern Shiro buildings appear less simplistic as the greek-like Kuni temples, with more blatantly japanese decor on their outer presences. Renshunese art and statues often line the halls and chambers of the inside of Shiro buildings.
The main political structure of Shirokuni lands is the Shiro Akiro, a capitol building of humble yet regel repoire.
Iyo Tisha, presently uninhabitable by all humans because of the cursed Tainted Lands, named for the presence of an awful and foreboding presence that afflicts living things with sickness and madness, and is only resisted by the Nezumi, a race of rodent rat-humanoids. Shamans of the Nezumi often utitilize the essence of the Stain, the sickening power rising from the Tainted Lands (indicated in red on the northern coast of Shiro land). The Stain is often used to cast warlock-like spells, like raising the dead and other often-deadly effects, and mages that employ its use are called Maho-tsukai.
Renshunese Racial Demographics
Renshunan's Economic Environment and Currency
Renshunese Classes, Professions, and Prestige Guilds
See also Martial Artist Classes on the WFR Char RANK Page
Renshunan’s written history goes back hundreds of years, nearly a millennia long, and beyond that, legends and folklore exists from such ancient lineages as the naga, minotaurs and elves that tell of ancient lore of the divine, such as the first races, the kami (the great spirits), and the birth of humanity and their brother races. One of its most dynamic and monumental moments in time was when the Shadow began to rise, and the Tainted Lands became more and more powerful. This event and the activities surrounding it were a major influence on Renshunese culture and life. Since that time, many scholars and mages have risen to power and made their mark by slowing the growth of the influence of the Taint, or the Shadow, an energy that seeps from the land in certain areas because of a stagnant and creeping energy like that of radiation and plague.
Renshunan’s greatest empires fell because of these events, and all of life was changed when it occurred.
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