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Author Topic: Some thoughts on Klingon Religion  (Read 13992 times)
Discoursing Diplomat
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« on: 04 06, 2007, 02:16: AM »

I found this in my files recently, something I wrote a long time ago.  It's basically an attempt to have a religion that doesn't require a supreme being to make it work. What do you think?

The language is a little stilted because this is a translation; the original is in tlhIngan Hol.
Klingon Religion

A friend recently asked me if the Klingons had a religion. I composed these thoughts in answer

The Gods

    At the beginning of time, the gods dwelt in Paradise. The gods created the universe, Kronos, and the Klingon race. The Klingon heart was very powerful. Because it was so powerful and so fiery, the hearts burned up Paradise and killed all the gods. Since then, Paradise has been empty.

What Happens When a Klingon Dies?

    When a Klingon dies, the body obviously decays, but the Klingon spirit certainly can't die, since the Klingon heart is so strong. When a true warrior dies, his or her spirit goes to Sto-vo-kor. If anyone dies without honor, the honored dead do not want to see this one and send him or her on to Grethor. If a warrior dies honorably in battle, he or she joins the Black Fleet. Some sects believe that Kahless commands the Black Fleet.

Who Is Kahless?

    Kahless was the first Emperor of the Klingon Empire. He was the perfect warrior. If one wants to become a true warrior, they must study Kahless's acts and try to imitate him. Before Kahless died, he promised to return. "Look for me on that star," he commanded, so we wait for him on Borath. (Because his heart was so powerful, some sects believe that Kahless's body did not die, either.) When Kahless returns, he will again rule the Empire.

Why and How Do We Encounter Kahless?

    We want to meet Kahless so that his spirit can teach and encourage us. We do this through Tovadok. Tovadok usually happens on the battlefield, but it can occur elsewhere, too. When we meet Kahless, his heart speaks to our hearts, without words.

    Some sects believe differently. They believe that the true warrior spirit always lives in our hearts, but that usually it is hidden. The label "spirit of Kahless" stands for this warrior spirit. When we say "I have encountered Kahless", we really mean that we have found the warrior spirit in our own hearts.

What is the Goal of Life?

    Of course, honor is the goal of our lives. We use our Klingon customs and rituals to achieve this goal. Customs teach us the virtues which we must practice. When our spirit wants to communicate with us, it does so by dreams, and when we want to communicate with our spirits, we do so by ritual. When we celebrate the rites, our spirits become powerful and we can act with honor. If we act honorably, we will achieve true honor. If we achieve honor, then we will die with honor.

Oops, I just realized this should be in the Religion Section - sorry!
Her Nibbs
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That which does not kill me, must have missed me.

« Reply #1 on: 04 13, 2007, 02:27: AM »

I appreciate the way in which you try to develop a Klingon religion as a unique entity in and of itself instead of pigeonholing it into one that already exists. As qoSagh put it so well in Klingons and Norse Religion, too often TIIC “take a bunch of Vikings, cross out Norway and write in Qo’noS in crayon.”

Can you elaborate on the concept of Tovadok? A Google search reveals it in the context of a ship’s name and a Second Life site; the only other place I have seen it is on your home page from which you have developed this post.

-=- Kesvirit

Richard the Sound Guy: "And the next person to lecture me about canon risks getting shot out of one! Right, gaffers?"
Gaffers make appreciative and supportive remarks in the form of bad imitations of primate calls from the direction of the lighting grids.
Discoursing Diplomat
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« Reply #2 on: 04 13, 2007, 04:03: AM »

Can you elaborate on the concept of Tovadok? A Google search reveals it in the context of a ship’s name and a Second Life site; the only other place I have seen it is on your home page from which you have developed this post.

The word comes from Klingon for the Galactic Traveler by Marc Okrand.  In the glossary, it's listed as tova'Daq 'mind sharing (n)'.  I can't find the exact reference, but somewhere in the book, he describes it as something that occasionally happens between two comrades on the battlefield, when their actions are so much in sync that they might be reading each other's minds.  I liked how the concept is left a little ambiguous: maybe it really is mind-reading, or maybe they're just reading each other's body language.  Extending it to Kahless, if you believe his spirit really exists, then maybe you are reading his thoughts, or, maybe you're just getting in touch with your 'inner warrior'.

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« Reply #3 on: 05 23, 2007, 08:23: AM »

I want to say there is a reference in TNG, when kahless was cloned, during a conversation between him and worf, but to be honest, I'm not sure if that was what they were referring to, or the exact content of the conversation, or if what kahless was referring to happened in another episode at all.  Makes me wish i had the dvd's on hand to check it myself.
Lettered Veteran
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« Reply #4 on: 05 24, 2007, 03:44: AM »


It's from the DS9 episode "Soldiers of the Empire".
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