Penarak Tradition / Ritual in Naikwan | World Anvil
BUILD YOUR OWN WORLD Like what you see? Become the Master of your own Universe!


The Penarak is a coming of age ritual performed by the Penaura when an individual reaches 19 years old. It is the most important ritual in a Penaura's life. Penaura are given a name by their parents at birth, and upon their 19th birthday they change their name to one of their choice through the Penarak. The Penaura believe that it is a sort of rebirth, and that once it is over, the individual is a new person, thus the importance of the name change. The Penarak also provides an opportunity for individuals who wish to transition to another gender to do so. It is considered offensive to refer to a Penaura who has undergone the Penarak by their old name.
Those who refuse to change their name at their Penarak are often thought of as childish, though due to the increasing loss of Pennath's land to the Mirran Dominion and the immigration of many refugees to other countries, this line of thought has changed. It is becoming more common for youths to not even have a Penarak, and thus not change their name. Historically, those who didn't have a Penarak were shunned, but circumstances have created leniency in this regard.


The Penarak has been practiced for centuries, since well before the First Dawn. The ceremony remained largely unchanged for thousands of years. Historically, it was uncommon for a Penaura to have a Penarak and choose to keep their childhood name, but not unheard of. This has changed in recent years, as the importance of the Penarak has been in decline as a result of the Mirran Dominion forcing Penaura to leave their homeland. Some modern Penaura have taken to keeping their childhood name, or keeping it as a middle name such as in the case of Orlifen Talomina Pendiri. Many don't even have a Penarak at all, as a shaman is required for it to be legitimate, and shaman are hard to come by outside the homeland.


The individual being celebrated will wear a traditional Penarak outfit for the ceremony. This garb can be custom made for the individual, or handed down from an older family member. Some Penarak outfits have been handed down for generations. They will also wear their family's unique face paint design. The Penaura will then be anointed by a shaman in front of the Penarak's attendees, which can range from their whole village to just them. Afterward, they will announce their new name, or rarely their old name, to the attendees, concluding the ceremony. Usually, the Penarak is followed by a feast, which is where the guests will give the new adult gifts for their new life.


A Penaura shaman must be present in order to for the ceremony to be considered legitimate. Often, the individual's entire village will attend and offer the newly adult Penaura a gift to help them in their new life. Some do opt for more private ceremonies with only friends and family, but this is less common. Some even only have the ceremony with just themselves and the shaman.


The Penarak takes place on the day of a Penaura's 19th birthday. If it does not happen on this day, it is not considered legitimate. Historically, those who did not have a Penarak or missed their Penarak day were shunned, but there has been more leniency in recent times.


Please Login in order to comment!