The world of the Zjal.
Our world was advanced, high technology yet it was the technology that wasn't important only tools for life. We had skyscrapers, and a transportation system far beyond most of what your world has today. There was no pollution and few vehicles were necessary for above ground transport.
I recall as a child the age of ten when people came and turned off my mothers maid then took her away. This was a turning point in all children's lives, when children took the place of the maid and became a working part of a family. To me she was fully alive until that point in my life and had held my training while growing up when the parents were gone for work. She was my teacher, confidant and friend, and I loved her so. Yet when mother came home she stepped into the background and handled the menial tasks of the home and my mother became my center of focus and my purpose for living. I do not recall a father in that life nor do I remember his loss.
The people came in and sat me down and said you are ten years old now and know why we are here, I refused to understand and did not want to accept this life changing event. Yet they produced a small flesh colored box and placed it underneath the right arm of our maid and she ceased to function. I had never seen this before. To me it was just as it looked, she became an inanimate object with no function as if a switch had been thrown and "she" ceased to be. She was no longer a living viable breathing friend and caretaker, but a simulacrum of someone who I knew and loved. Pain and loss were instantaneous... I was told that I knew my duties and that mother would be coming home soon and I should have dinner ready.
I sit here reliving the pain of that moment again tears rolling down my cheeks. The apparent death of a friend who possibly millions of years old was now no longer and I knew I would never see "her" again. "She" would no longer exist as her memory of my life would be removed and stored and a new memory unit would replace it. She would go to another home and become the maid never remembering me again. Of course I would see another like her, but it would never be her and trying to communicate would be as with a total stranger.... Life moved on.
Mother came home and dinner was ready, we sat and never once mentioned the maid being gone. Life continued and I performed the tasks as necessary and mother took part as she saw fit. I grew and when time came I became a part of the society having my own family and life went on...
As a member of the Zjal Priesthood, another incarnation, observers of ancient ritual that helped shape our world and provided continuity for growth.
On many worlds throughout their history whether warring or peaceful, events take place that either bring it to an end or help it to grow and become. Zjal was no different and in many ways it was much better than many of the other worlds I have lived on.
We started out quite similar to Earth's Aboriginals and Polynesians. We explored our world in canoes and small vessels where trade winds did most of the direction making and luck supplied the islands and continents we migrated to. Many times we traveled and populated, with hundreds of years between journeys, but it was our explorer spirit that gave us cause to go further.
Present priests dressed as had been done for millennia in breech clouts and minimal covering. Painted or tattooed designs covering most of the exposed flesh. We were almost exactly the beautiful skin color of the Polynesians the same hair types and similar build. Our lives were not fully ritual but on certain dates we performed the ceremonies and observances that held our world peaceful for so long and all understood the importance of never forgetting.
On the evenings of ritual entire cities shut down during the rituals, silence observed, all windows opened and the sounds of city life quieted just to hear the rituals taking place. These rituals were silently observed via television and radio and all rememberd the importance of memory.
In the center of the cities were ancient dirt and wooden structures exactly as they had been millennia before. To see these you would recognise dirt berms with slatted wood standing upright exposed, having two inch spaces between slats, on top of which were thatched roofs that overhang approximately three feet. This provided plenty of rain and sun protection to the interior of the structure. Inside the building the walls and floor were maintained in the original fashion natural and bare... There were no furnishings such as altars to unseen gods, we had no gods we were telepathic and knew better. The lack of furnishings only necessary as room was needed for the ritual had to be large enough to accommodate the priests, rituals were always done standing.
I will try to remember some of the songs and chants we sang during ritual before they completely fade from my memory again. In the ritual chants I will use original words as much as possible. But when remembering different languages while as spirit, they tend to translate equally and what you end up with when written sometimes will be a mixture of your most recent language and the old languages. I invite any who remember these words to share their memories of where when and why...
First, the, "Zjal Noo" Ritual Hymn followed by a translation. The chant sounded much like the Gregorian chants of this world in tone and timbre with a little more modulation and musical note.
Com nom valtavir zjal valta vir om dal valtair zjal noo.
Com nom valtavir zjal valta vir om cal valtair zjal noo.
Com nom valtavir zjal valta vir om cru valtair zjal noo.
"Come named child of Zjal child of earthmother (individual name) Zjal's priest."
Each line of the ritual related to name of the next member priest and the final line added in the name of the kidnapped. An honorable and important place to be.
It seems I have lost the words for the kidnapped but the sense was like
Con Nom valtavir zjal valta vir taken daughter (or son) of tribe valtair zjal noo.
The kidnapped a female now a priest. In history when villages were small and far apart the kidnapped were considered important links to other villages so no one could say that they were not a part of another village. The kidnapped created a link and were married to a local male and treated as the important familial link. These kidnappings were considered an honor among the young women and men; they were prepared to be the bond between villages.
This was the world of the Zjal, a modern world with skyscrapers and science. Human robots and single parent families. Zjal, now a modern world where wars never happened because rituals and observances such as the kidnapping from other member villages maintained a continuous freshening of the genetic codes and more importantly the links that over time created a one world family. Where decisions made were always considered in the best interest of the whole and not of the part.
We observed old traditions and incorporated some into newer practices like the ritual of telepathic observance. This took place in of all places, a baseball game!
During the break between innings four priests would carry four square reed woven barriers to home plate. These barriers, tall enough that the priests could not see over and large enough that their size would provide complete visual blockage. They were placed in a grid pattern where a four foot lane centering on the game field and another four foot lane perpendicular to the first created a walkway between the barriers.
Two priests would take place out of sight of the other priests in the perpendicular lane while the first priest would take a wooden plank similar to a cricket bat without a handle and stand to the right of home base behind a barrier while the other priest would stand on the outside of the outer barrier in almost the same position as the batter priest.
The outer priest, "the pitcher" would throw a ball at his time of choosing the two inside priests would walk back and fourth acting as interference to the pitcher who could not see them and the first priest would wait and prepare to hit the ball pitched at an unseen time.
This act allowed for so many variables, each priest at any time independently of the others could be a victim of a thrown or batted ball. The two walking priests could at their whim cross the line of pitch blocking the ball and being injured, as well as be hit with the returned ball at an even greater speed.
The hitter could jump out and swing at any time missing the ball or being hit with the ball or embarrassing himself and all others by fanning the crowd. The pitcher could throw the ball hitting the others or missing everything completely. Needless to say any mistakes could either be embarrassing or painful...
The people in the stadium could mostly see where the priests were, but those at lower elevations could not see all, but most. Telepathically the priests would communicate their positions and start the exhibition.
At the last, but most appropriate second the first priest would jump, board in hand and swing at an unseen ball. The pitcher priest would throw the ball without seeing the first priest and not even stepping from behind the barrier, only his arm would come from behind the barrier and he would never even see what he was throwing at. The two priests walking interference could cross paths in the line of pitch at any time.
Each priest would take the chance of being hit by the thrown ball or the batted ball never once seeing the action as it happens. Yet the telepathic link between the four allowed a solid hit into the stadium. Seeing this enforced the link of telepathy for all to see and most have telepathy to some degree already, just the younger ones have not developed the ability actually see what they could have once they work on it.
The solid hit and resulting ball flying would be greeted by a silent crowd into an exploding cheer, especially the children anticipating and seeing the impossible become reality. Thus enforcing reality of what cannot be seen as telepathic communications. Encouraging the children to try and learn abilities that apparently had no visible source.
The festival of the harvest.
The festival of the harvest, took place after dark, there was an ell shaped structure built and inside a dining area with wooden tables and trestle benches, all hand carved. The walls were slatted and little light from the night came through, just enough to add shape to the beings inside. Some of the shapes were very frightening as the people inside were considered the "enemy". They dressed in masks and painted faces designed to frighten both adult and child alike.
The purpose of the masks and paint to create the unknown, an enemy of no singular type that could represent any visitor from our world or any other world.
The families would cook the best of foods, trays of meats spiced to perfection, cakes and treats that would make the mouth water. Aromas that would inspire gods.... these foods were carried into the dark places and placed before the enemy, of course some might be stolen by the priest to ensure quality... LOL! But, the enemy was well fed.
What is the logic in feeding an enemy the best of foods? Especially in a world where there were no wars? Ritual of memory! Used to enforce that enemy becomes friend when well fed. Sharing of the best of food and resources among all beings.
Do you not cook your best when having friends and visitors welcomed into your home?
Do you tend to set the best table when you open your home or your world to others?
If you do not, is it not time to rethink your priorities and become a part of the whole?
Who is the enemy? Someone you do not get along with? Someone that drinks from the wrong side of the glass? Just someone different from yourself? Why would these things make them an enemy?
What is the value in death of loved ones? When did war really improve anything for anyone? Yes of course the aftermath provided for advanced technologies and the loss of life provided jobs for the unemployed.
Imagine if in your world the monies spent on wars were spent on food and technologies to help each other? This should have been your path. Just as Zjal... Where would your world be now if the governments were actually for the people instead of the elite and themselves?