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The Ritual

February 5, 2022 Leave a comment Go to comments

Talking about Victor Turner yesterday gave me an idea.

Once a year, at the summer solstice, those mages sufficiently trained in the Hidden and True Arts may ascend the Holy Mountain and conduct a ritual, which has the power to change the fundamental workings of the world. For each sufficiently trained mage that takes part, one word may be uttered in the Original Language. The sentence that these words make up becomes true at the end of the shortest night, so that the people of the world may marvel at its working through the longest day. Only one mage utters the sentence, and then that mage’s voice is lost, forever.

There are few sufficiently trained mages and they are all highly suspicious of one another, so it has been many years since a ritual took place that was both substantive and widely approved. Two mages were able to augur “Caesar drowns,” but they could not recruit a third who would trust them enough to add “today.” The three mages who decreed “monkeys can fly” were regarded as both imprudent and carelessly incomplete: they neglected to impart to monkeys the will or urge to fly, so they remain (mostly) bound to their trees.

Still, the ritual stirs powerful hopes and fears. The sufficiently trained mages of some lands are feted and treated with lavish courtesy. In other lands they are killed on sight. They are almost always held prisoner in one way or another. Except, it is said, for a secret order of mages who live somewhere on or in the mountain, who have sworn to counter any sufficiently dangerous sentence.

from https://kurtwenner.com/history-of-street-painting-1/
Melasti/Temple Procession. Ketut Parwita Bali, 52-72 cm. Paper, 2000. From https://www.nowbali.co.id/ritual-life/
  1. February 6, 2022 at 1:39 pm

    I like this idea a lot!

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