Isle Of Anango

The Isle of Anango is located on Gor. Gor is a fictional Counter-Earth based on the books by John Norman. This island is Sovereign and Ruled by a Tatrix (female ruler). This community is representative of the Three Pillars, Homestone: Anango, Caste: Ini
 
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 The Second Pillar

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Tatrix Lady Aasiyah
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Number of posts : 391
Registration date : 2009-01-02

PostSubject: The Second Pillar   Sat Jan 31, 2009 2:21 am

Caste System:




Gorean society has a firmly established Caste System and almost
all Free Persons belong to a Caste. The Caste system is a vital
component of civilized Gorean society. In its most basic form, a Caste
is your profession though there is much more involved than that. Your
Caste defines your codes of conduct, generally limits those you
interact with, sets your place within the Gorean hierarchy, and so much
more. Your Caste defines much of who you are on Gor, far more than any
job on Earth ever would.



There are three basic categories outside of the caste system:
Priest-Kings, outlaws and slaves. Priest-Kings are the "gods" of Gor
and live hidden away in the Sardar Mountains. A man who refuses to
practice his livelihood or strives to alter status without consent of
the Council of High Castes is by definition an outlaw. Outlaws belong
to no city and usually live hidden in the forests, mountains or other
isolated areas. Outlaws do not have identifying devices on their garb.
Most cities will impale outlaws if they try to access the city gates.
There are few outlaws on Gor as being cut off from Gorean society so to
such a degree is a great onus. Slaves are considered property and have
no status in the caste system. Any Caste they once had is stripped from
them when they are enslaved.



There are also some peoples who do not fall into these three
primary exceptions but are still outside the caste system. There are
some people who have lost caste or been deprived of caste for various
reasons. Some are born outside of the caste system. A few occupations
are not traditionally associated with a caste, like gardening, domestic
service and herding. There are also cultures and peoples on Gor without
any caste system. But these peoples are traditionally considered
barbarians and not a part of civilized Gor. These include such cultures
as the Wagon Peoples, Torvaldslanders, Red Savages and the Tribesmen of
the Tahari. All of these people are not considered outlaws though and
are able to enter cities realatively freely.



Caste is primarily governed by birth. Children take on the caste
of their father. If the mother does not share the caste of the father,
there might be a problem if their Free Companionship eneded. In this
case, it makes sense that the children would remain with the father as
the children belong to his caste. Caste is far too important a matter
to let the children go off with someone not of their caste. If mother
and father shared caste, then the children could go with either parent.
The books though do not make clear what happens to children when a Free
Companionship ends.



The Caste system has little upward mobility though the opportunity
does exist. Changing your Caste is generally not an easy task. Free
Companionship is one method for free women to change their caste.
Normally, relationships remain within the same caste. But, if of mixed
caste, the woman can keep her own caste or take her partner's caste.
This can serve to raise her caste. Generally, a woman would not change
her Caste to a lower one. Though her Caste changed, the woman could not
fully practice her new Caste until she had been properly trained and
met all other prerequisites. Another way for man or woman to change is
their caste is through a showing or lack of ability. This can serve to
either raise or lower your caste. To lower your Caste through a lack of
ability, the High Council of the Caste would have to make that
decision. To raise your caste or willingly change caste, the High
Council of the city must approve the change, based on your
qualifications for the new Caste and the willingness of the new Caste
to accept you. Women are promoted and demoted by the same criteria as
men though it varies from city to city.



To most Goreans though, it is unthinkable to alter their caste.
Most Goreans are proud of their caste, even peasants and laborers. It
is recognized that all, or at least most, castes perform necessary,
useful or commendable tasks. Their skills are appreciated by others and
not generally looked down on. Each caste views itself as special in
some way. Each Caste has its place and worth in Gorean society. Metal
Workers state: "Where would the dwellers of cities be without us?"
(Dancer of Gor, p.293) This is a way of saying that their skills are
essential for civilization. Even the lowest Caste, the Peasants,
consider themselves the "Ox on which the Home Stone Rests." They are
the ones that provide the food for all other Castes.



Despite this respect for the place of each Caste within Gorean
society, Caste discrimination is very common. "Language and city, and
caste, however, are matters of great moment to them, and provide
sufficient basis for the discriminations in which human beings take
such great delight." (Beasts of Gor, p.156) Entertainment and Free
Companionships generally follow Caste lines. There are paga taverns
that cater to the different Castes and a Peasant would not dare enter a
High Caste tavern. Many Castes will not use the Long Bow because it is
seen as a Peasant weapon and beneath higher castes. The Double
Knowledge is a method of discrimination meant to keep the Lower Castes
in their place. The Low Castes are generally not permitted to vote or
be on the High Councils. The Castes are ranked from Highest to Lowest
which alone signifies that some are better than others.



Castes are divided into High Castes and Low Castes. There are only
five High Castes and include Initiates, Scribes, Builders, Physicians
and Warriors. Each has its own color, respectively white, blue, yellow,
green, red, which is also their ranking of order of importance. The
High Castes elect the Administrator and Council of a city for stated
terms. There are subcastes of some of these castes. For example,
cartographers and lawyers belong to the Caste of Scribes. The Lower
Castes includes all the other established castes. These includes such
castes as assassins, bakers, bleachers, carriers of wood (woodsmen),
charcoal makers, cloth worker, cosmeticians, dyers, goat-keepers,
growers of rence, leather workers, metal workers, musicians, peasants,
potters, saddle makers, singers (poets), smiths, tarn keepers,
vintners, and weavers. There are many more castes and some subcastes.
These castes are also ranked in order of their importance with peasants
at the bottom of the ranking order.



Each caste has its own Caste Code to govern the conduct of its
members. "The ethical teachings of Gor, …,amount to little more than
the Caste Codes---collections of sayings whose origins are lost in
antiquity." (Tarnsman of Gor, p.40-41) Unfortunately the books provide
little details on the Caste Codes for each different Caste. Only the
Warrior Caste receives any siginificant details on its Caste Codes.
These Codes are vitally important to the Caste members and are
generally followed by all. "It is the codes which separate men from
sleen and larls," (Slave Girl of Gor p.227) Failing to follow the Codes
could lead to sanctions from your Caste.



Belonging to a Caste also gives you certain privileges. Charity is
administered through the caste structure. Goreans do not favor begging
and some even view it as an insult. When charity is in order, the caste
or clan comes to the rescue. Caste Sanctuary, the protection of caste
members in times of need, is another privilege. A Caste protects its
own members and they form a cohesive unity. Caste rights are a matter
of birth and you are entitled to them automatically, even if you never
practice your caste work.



One commonly cannot practice a craft in a Caste until an
apprenticeship is done though you might be able to do some subsidiary
work in that craft without such practice. A Metalworker, who has not
completed his apprenticeship, might be able to paint iron or transport
it though he could not work the iron. An apprenticeship helps to
guarantee the quality of the Caste's products and services. Thus a
Caste will consist of full working members of the Caste, members in
training, and non-practicing members. Women of a caste often do not
engage in caste work. Women generally do not work in Castes where
physical strength is required. For example, women of the Metal Workers
do not commonly work at a forge and women of the Builder's do not
supervise the construction of fortifications.



But, women do commonly work as Scribes and Merchants. There are
even female slavers. Another notable exception is that of the
Physician's Caste. The Physician's Caste though does restrict women in
one way. The Caste will not permit a woman to practice medicine until
she has first born two children. In many cities, at age fifteen, a
woman of the Physician's Caste dons two bracelets. One is removed for
each child born, and when both are removed, she is allowed to practice
medicine. The reason behind this is that it is understood that
professional women tend not to reproduce themselves. This would serve
over time to diminish the quality of the caste. Thus, the rule helps to
preserve the future of the caste.



The future of the caste is vitally important to Goreans. The
welfare of the caste takes priority over the ambitions of specific
individuals. The welfare of a larger number of individuals is more
important than the welfare of a smaller number of individuals. Caste is
crucially important to Goreans in ways that those of Earth cannot
easily comprehend. The importance of the caste to Goreans cannot be
underestimated. Thus, the logic behind this restriction on women in the
Physician's Caste should apply as well to the Warrior Caste.



Why would the Warrior Caste allow women to risk their lives in
combat? There would be more women dying in combat which would lead to
fewer births. In addition, dead women could not raise their existing
children. Goreans would not want their children to grow up with
mothers. This would all diminish the quality of the caste over time.
With the welfare of the caste at stake, Warriors would not permit women
to engage in combat. In addition, women would not want to endanger the
welfare of the caste so they would accept their role in the Caste. This
may be one of the strongest single arguments against female warriors.



There are a number of key differences between the High and Low
Castes. First, each learns a different type of knowledge concerning
their world. The Low Castes learn the First Knowledge that is a simpler
knowledge with a number of falsehoods and half-truths. They learn that
the world is flat and are not taught of the existence of Earth. The
High Castes have the Second Knowledge. They know about Earth and most
of the true information about Gor though they know little of the true
nature of the Priest-Kings. Most of them would have uncovered these
truths on their own anyways. There is a Third Knowledge belonging to
the Priest Kings, a knowledge of the many secrets of Gor.



The Low Castes are also very superstitious normally. They are
reluctant to reveal their true names. They thus have both a use name
and a real name. Often only close relatives know their real name. High
Castes usually use their names freely though the Lowers believe they
have use names. Knowing a real name supposedly gives one power, a
capacity to use the name in spells and insidious magical practices.
Many of the Low Castes believe in magic and that some people can read
thoughts. They believe the stories of the wizards and monsters of
Anango.



There is an accent that differentiates the High and Low Castes,
though some of the higher artisan castes speak almostlike the High
Caste. Illiteracy is common on Gor and is not taken as a mark of
stupidity. Literacy usually follows by caste lines and many Goreans of
the Low Castes cannot read. Even some of the High Castes, primarily
warriors, may be illiterate. Some warriors feel that they should not be
literate so they hide the fact that they can read.



The caste system is vital to the proper functioning of Gorean
society. The caste system contributes considerably to the stability of
society. It reduces competitive chaos, social and economic, and
prevents the draining of intelligence and ambition into a small number
of envied, prestigious occupations. By making each Caste important and
instilling an attitude that the good of the Caste outweighs individual
ambitions, people tend to remain in their Caste. Gorean society is not
a battle over climbing a social ladder.



In your role-play, you should be proud of your caste and
participate in Caste matters such as Caste leader elections. Goreans
care about the future of their Castes. They place their personal
desires below the welfare of their caste. If you are a Low Caste,
remember the differences from the High Castes. Remember that you only
have the First Knowledge and are likely illiterate. Respect those of
Higher Caste than you. Follow your Caste codes.
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The Second Pillar
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