Customs and Traditions

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Customs

Greetings and Presenting Oneself as Friendly

It is customary for Ramathians of similar or equal status to either shake hands, or touch one another on the shoulder in greeting. Usually the touching is almost always done with the right hand. The shoulder touch greeting is often used by those who are on friendlier terms with one another, or comrades in arms. Touch is generally avoided by mages, who are generally more wary of touch-driven curses. When a mage is presenting themselves as friendly, they will cross both of their arms over their chest, and bow their heads slightly in greeting, all while keeping their gaze fixed upon the individual that they’re greeting. A mage can make this gesture insulting and contemptuous by closing their eyes or deliberately breaking their gaze.

Tattoos

Tattoos are a large part of the planet life on Ramath-lehi. Tattoos are so culturally ingrained in Ramathian society, that it is actually considered “weird” for someone to not have tattoos. One of the oldest practises involves getting “Grading Stripes” which are tattooed stripes that Ramathians would receive for recognition of a great achievement. While dated, many Ramathians still get visible Grading Stripes - usually on their faces. However they are not always given out by the Grader family, which was who the tradition originated with. Instead there are many families who chose to reward their own kin with their own markings and insignia. Tattoos have also become more complicated and ornate over the years. Sometimes Ramathians even get their tattoos “infused” with special magic properties using a special Fronimium ink. These can vary from simple glowing, to colour changes, or even giving off heat. It takes a very skilled mage and tattoo artist to create these particular permanent works of art, and they often do not come cheap.

In some parts of Ramath-lehi, there is a tradition of covering healed-over scars with tattoos. This may be done as a way of showing off (particularly for a heavily battle-scarred warrior), or as a part of the healing process after a traumatic incident. This practice is where the colloquialism "paint your scars" comes from.

For Ramathians with long fur that would obscure traditional tattoos (e.g. Khell and Yki), an alternative method which involves altering individual hair follicles so the "tattoo" colours grow into the fur is commonly used. See Tattoo Artistry for more detailed information regarding the methods.

Family Size

It is not uncommon for family sizes to be very large. Some families have had up to twenty offspring. However the most average family size consists of two parents, and three to four offspring. Being an only child is very uncommon.

Marriage

TraditionSummary
OmeseaA marriage tradition dedicated specifically to same sex couples.
Omesjei TraditionA simple marriage tradition with emphasis on friends and family and tail-flame born jewelry.
Pyx'gesopeud TraditionA highly religious Anubian marriage tradition.
Rympemd TraditionA rather modern marriage tradition from Sudesha.
Sha Qyememd TraditionA highly popular marriage tradition for Yki.

Egg Shells

It is very common for the parents of a Ramathian to keep the egg shells that their offspring hatched from (if they are an egg-producing race). The shell of a new hatchling is said to have magical properties and is used as a base for many powerful spells. The larger the shell fragment, the more powerful it is said to be. Many Ramathians keep their offspring’s shell fragments and end up getting them encased and put on display in their living rooms. Upon death, these egg shells will often be turned into the focal point of shrines deep within family tombs.

Being a Good Host

When having someone over at your home, or when hosting a private party, it is customary to offer food or drink only upon your guest’s request. Some hosts prefer to simply leave food and drink out so that their guests may help themselves and negate having to request entirely.

Death and Funerals

When a Ramathian dies, it is believed that their soul then goes to Fronima (unless their soul has been lost and/or eaten by a Rapine). Almost always, upon death, a Ramathian’s body is burned to ashes in order to destroy the vessel and prevent all forms of necromancy. The ashes are then often carried deep into caves and scattered. The specific rituals and customs vary between the races (such as the Khell choosing to skin their family members before burning).

Funerals are almost always seen as a way to celebrate an individual’s life, and crying is not very common. Instead there is often a lot of drinking, dancing, and telling stories. Most funerals are public events and anyone may partake.

Blood Oaths

Not many Ramathians practise Blood Oaths as they are considered to be very archaic. However to make and then break a Blood Oath is an unthinkable thing. Blood Oaths are legally binding and can be proven to be tied to the signing parties based on their DNA and magic signatures. It is impossible to forge a Blood Oath. Breaking a Blood Oath essentially means that you forfeit your life over to the other party. Often the breaking of a Blood Oath results in death. Blood Oaths are still used by the Adamaint Empire when their clientele are unable to make full or proper payments.

Smoking

Smoking is not a very popular past-time on Ramath-lehi and is generally frowned upon. It has been scientifically proven to cause long-term respiratory damage. However the smoking of Nujeq is still relatively popular. It is just much more common to see Nujeq being taken orally, or baked into things, than smoked.

Social Faux Pas and Taboos

Gloves and Footwear

It is considered very suspicious for a Ramathian to wear any sort of garment on their hands or feet. Those who do wear such items without a visible and clear purpose (military uniform, hazardous waste uniform, spaceflight uniform, warmth while visiting the poles, etc.) are looked upon as being untrustworthy and likely up to no good. Due to the hardy nature of the ‘dragon foot, they do not need much protection, if any, from the outdoor elements. Their footpads are tough and offer more protection than any regular shoe or slipper ever would. In many cases, putting on shoes actually decreases a ‘dragons agility. It is also considered somewhat dishonest to change the shape of your footprint, or mask your steps with other methods.

Legality and Acceptance of Magic

The use of magical powers is completely legal, however there are some public establishments that have strict “no magic” policies which will result in you being thrown out or barred from entry. Aurius and Bhim in particular have many establishments where the use of magic is off-limits. It is considered very rude to use magic indoors inside public establishments (such as restaurants or cafes), and also very rude to “show off” ones magical abilities. Many users who practise magic are very modest about their talents.

Sexuality

It is inappropriate to make assumptions about the sexuality of anyone you meet.

Vegetarianism

While vegetarianism exists (as well as other alternative diets) on Ramath-lehi, it is seen as being a little strange and out of the ordinary. Ramathians are primarily carnivores, and require a lot of genetically modified plants in order to maintain a completely vegetarian lifestyle. Vegetarian food is very uncommon, and it may be difficult for an individual to get the food that they want from the more popular food chains.

Kytlekh and the Rapine

While an unspoken superstition, it is highly frowned upon and considered unprofessional and crude to talk about the Rapine or the Nothing, Kytlekh, in public. It is believed that speaking too much about the Rapine will corrupt your soul and bar your entry to Fronima upon death. This is often something that is overlooked in Bhim, where much of the local vernacular is considerably uncouth.

Nullfires and Nobility

To be hatched without the ability to use magic, or without a tail flame, is very bad. These individuals are often called nullfires, which is a derogatory term for someone who cannot do magic. While most Ramathians believe that magical abilities can be learned and developed over time, or do not put any stock in them at all, it is particularly shameful to be from a noble family and have no magic. This is largely due to the fact that all old blood is supposed to have a stronger affinity for magic, and to not have magic puts a blight on the noble family name.

Superstitions

The Source of Fronima

There is a widespread belief that Fronima is actually composed of living souls, and that by using magic, machina-powered technology, and other Fronima-powered devices, that we are actually killing those who died before us for a second time. So strong is this belief, that there is actually a subset of Ramathians who outright refuse to use magic because they believe that they are desecrating the remains of their ancestors.

Cursing the Magos and Magosai

It is exceptionally rude to curse the names of any of the past or present Magos and Magosai, and is said to result in the past leaders coming to haunt your dreams and make your life miserable. Not only that, but cursing them is also said to diminish your own magical abilities.

The Power of Names

In the higher magic circles, it is common for powerful mages to use aliases instead of their hatched names. This is because it is believed that if you enemies know your real name, then they will gain power over you. Many mages throughout history had aliases and their real names only became known after their deaths.

Dying in Space

It is considered really bad to die in space, as it is believed that the soul will continue to wander restlessly, unable to find its way back to Fronima. Bodies are also never “buried” in space. To intentionally leave someone’s body floating in space after their death is an unthinkable act. Even hardcore enemies have been known to gather the bodies of their foes and dispose of their bodies properly.