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The Great Plunge

The Astral Plane is home to few people and creatures, yet it is arguably one of the most incredible places one could ever dream to behold. The Ketopsians are the lucky few who can call it a home: they roam the Astral Sea, alone with their whale companions, in eternal contemplation. Yet before they depart on their individual journey, they must first grow in company of their family, until they come of age. Then, they will be brought to their family's Originem for the Great Plunge.

History

The Great Plunge has been a practice in Ketopsian culture for as long as anyone can remember. They do not care to find out when or where the first Plunge took place, and simply proceed with what they know to do. Knowing is neither relevant to the rite, nor does it bring anything to the contemplation Ketopsians seek.

Execution

The Non-Itineratum is brought by his parents to their family's Originem. The whole family will be gathered, sometimes passing Ketopsians from other families will join the celebration. The specifics of the rite vary from clan to clan, but the intent is always the same: the Ketopsians will first partake in celebrations, and will recount some of the most extraordinary sights they have seen since the last reunion.

Then, the Non-Itineratum will go in the centre of the Originem, and will have to enter a trans-like meditative state with their whale. This can last anywhere from a week to a month, and the longer it does the more the Ketopsian is considered attuned to the world around. While they meditate, the family members will progressively leave the Non-Itineratum, with the parents leaving last. When the Ketopsian awakens, they will be alone, and ready to leave on their journey.

Participants

Great Plunges are a rare occurrence in Ketopsian culture: because of their immortality and solitary lives, they do not reproduce very often, and children are always source of celebration. When a Ketopsian is ready for his journey, the entire family will be asked to come. This usually involves a growing group of at least 100 people. Ketopsians from unrelated clans in the area will sense the call through their whales, and will often join the celebrations.

There are no guides or ceremony masters. The Non-Itineratum has been informed of what they should do by their parents, and as such no instructions need to be given. The Great Plunge is the first step of an solitary journey, and being told what to do would go against the values of the ceremony itself.

The Great Plunge

The Great Plunge is the ceremony during which a Ketopsian will go from being a child to an adult, or from a Non-Itineratum to a Viatorem as a Ketopsian would say. It is as close as Ketopsians ever get to celebrating a birthday. The ceremony takes place on a Ketopsian's 100th birthday.
 

The Originem

Each Ketopsian family has its own Originem. It is the place where they gather for celebrations such as births, coming of age rites, or the union of a Ketopsian and their whale with a partner. These places are often (but not always) rock formations floating across the Sea, meaning they are mobile. The whales are able to keep track of them, allowing Ketopsians to always be able to meet up, no matter where it is.
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Cover image: by Mohammad Ali Berenji

Comments

Author's Notes

Thank you for taking the time to read! I hope you found this little bit of world-building interesting. The Ketopsians are a culture which I really enjoy writing about, even though they have little influence on the world. I'd love to answer any questions about them!


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14 Jul, 2020 12:40

This is so interesting. I love that it is a rare occurance and that the whole family gather for it. The Ketopsians sounds like such a fascinating culture!

14 Jul, 2020 12:44

Thank you for the king words! I'm estimating they only ever get to celebrate these every 500 to 800 years, so its a pretty big deal. And I'm glad they intrigue you :))

Author of Interarcanum.
20 Jul, 2020 10:03

This is an interesting read on how they connect with their own "whales". The thing that I couldn't get out of my mind what if the Non-Itineratum fails to complete this ritual? What will happen with them and the whale?

20 Jul, 2020 12:36

Oh that is a great question, and not something I've actually thought off. I'll definitely have to give it a think because it could lead to some very interesting lore. Thank you for the feedback!

Author of Interarcanum.