Skyviewing Tradition / Ritual in Niorath | World Anvil

Skyviewing

Oh divine Mothertree, high in the skies. Shine your light on your children and guide us through the coming year. May the moon, your celestial home, ever be our guide. Aid us in the protection of your children and keep those that would hurt them at bay. Oh divine Mothertree let the moon fill the night with light on this night of celebration and accept our humble offerings.
— part of Priest's speech during Skyviewing
  One of the more important festivities in the Mizarin Isles is the annual Skyviewing. This festival is dedicated to the largest moon, Naelik, and the Mothertree. The festival is typically held during the first full moon of Naelik in the summer.   During the day many competitions are held in honour of the Mothertree. Among these a climbing competition is the most important one. Other competitions include jumping between branches to complete a preset parcour and carrying a heavy jug of water to a temple tree.   But the biggest celebrations begin when the night falls.  

Festival

  The celebration of the skyviewing festival during the day is quite different than the one at night. During the day many competitons are being held in which all able Nekorians participate, the Mizarin Priests excluded.  

During the Day

 
Mizarin participating in branch swinging by Kefkejaco with Heroforge
 
 

The Jumping

  During the jumping competition the participating Nekorians jump between the branches of the Mizarin Nightlight through a previously determined parcour. Typically the priests create this parcour several days before the festival by molding the Mizarin Nightlights. They test it themselves to check if it is a doable course.   Although this competition is quite dangerous the amount of injuries is minimal. Several decades can go by before an accident happens. This is mainly due to the fact that the Nekorians are pretty good at climbing and acrobatic feats.  

The Water Burden

  This competition is more a feat of endurance instead of dexterity since it evolves walking/running a long distance while carrying a heavy jug filled with water. It is quite a demanding feat and not all Nekorians are able to make it to the end. Those that wish to stop earlier typically empty the jug at the nearest Mizarin Nightlight or Lightwalker.   Those that finish the course bring the jug to a temple of the Mothertree where several Lightwalker have gathered. Each participant offers the water to one of the Lighwalkers there. However the one who reaches the temple first is given the honour of offering water to the temple tree itself.  

Race for the top

The ascenscion to the top of the canopy is the most important of the competitions. Only Nekorians who have participated and not quit during the other competitions are allowed to participate in this challenge. The winner of this competition gets honoured at the celebration at night. Given the superior climbing abilities of some Nekorians this race can be very short in some years.  
 

During the Night

 
When the competitions end all Nekorians gather above the canopy to watch the nightsky as the Nightlight trees start to emit light themselves. Luckily the canopy leaves of the Nightlight trees are quite large and sturdy enough to withstand several dozens of Nekorians.  

The feast

  The first part of the celebrations at night is a large feast. Every Mizarin Nightlight's canopy is filled with several Nekorians who all eat, talk and celebrate together. A common food during this night are the moonshaped cakes with the Mothertree symbol placed on it.  

The Ritual

After the meal each group of Nekorians is joined by a Priest who perfoms a ceremony. All Nekorians stand up and reach for the Naelik moon with outstretched arms. The priest asks for the blessings of the moon and the Mothertree.  

Dancing

  After the ceremony they typically form a circle around one of the light emmiting extensions of a Nightlight tree and start a traditional dance. The dancing takes a very long time and many Nekorians only leave once it almost becomes day again. The day after the celebration most Nekorians are exhausted and sleep for a large portion of the day.  
 
Yamaderis misplaced this image by Kefkjaco with heroforge
 


Cover image: Nervonia by Gam-Ol on pixabay

Comments

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Jul 4, 2021 12:29 by Keon Croucher

The water burden one is interesting. I like your choice to say 'carry' as well, specifically. Because to me that creates a picture of them having to use both arms to hold this large jug like against their torso, which moving quickly whilst carrying heavy objects that way is far harder and intensive on the body than say with shoulder straps or some such. So if that was intentional, well thought out, and if it wasn't, well its still brilliant anyway!   An interesting festival all around as well, very.....I almost want to say druid-esque? But that may be because 'Mothertree'. But that very natural, very 'common person's' feel to the activities. How its various simple races just with added difficulties, no like specialized skill contests with archery, or some other such. It has that humble, homey, everyperson feel in the events and merry-making that occurs.

Keon Croucher, Chronicler of the Age of Revitalization
Jul 6, 2021 09:06

Thank you for the kind words! ^^ Yes indeed it is quite heavy and they need to carry it, not a gigantic distance but still enough to make it very demanding.   And indeed it is meant to feel somewhat druid like due to the reverence they have for the exceptional Mizarin Nightlight trees. It is indeed meant for everyone and all participate in the competitions so I am glad that it came across ^^

Feel free to check my new world Terra Occidentalis if you want to see what I am up to!
Jul 5, 2021 07:46 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

Great article! I love the idea of all of those competitions in the trees! This really fits cat people :D

To see what I am up to: my Summer Camp 2024.
Jul 6, 2021 08:54

Thanks! ^^ Yeah need to have competitions that they excel in of course :p

Feel free to check my new world Terra Occidentalis if you want to see what I am up to!