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Author Topic: Klingon Animal Gods  (Read 17137 times)
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« on: 08 29, 2005, 11:28: AM »

Spun off from Klingon Gods.  Do they live?

Quote
In Pawns & Symbols, there is mention of Durgath as a god. He is seen as a dragon like being, certainly more animal like than Klingon like.
Quote
The Klingon animal gods may be analogous, or a close as can be expected- Supernatural beings to be wary of or make use of. This doesn't contradict the killing of the Creator-gods.

    I must admit the idea of Klingon Animal gods had not occurred to me until mentioned here.   Durgath was described by Lt. Czery as a dragon a mythical beings common to many Terran cultures.   Many Terran cultures have animal gods, or worship animal spirits as gods.  Cultures that have one animal god typically have many...  Since there are many species of animals in any ecosystem, each with differences in adaptations and behaviours.  Each animal has it's own ways of surviving thatare studies and worshiped in these cultures.

     I am trying to think of a culture that has both dragons and animal gods(except where one or the other was imported from another culture).   Off the top of my head I can't think of any, but I am hardly an expert on any Terran cultures.   I took it for a given that Durgath was a mythical creature.

    What if Durgath was a lung (a Klingon lizard)?  Then there would likely be many other animal gods, each with their own 'magic' and properties.   It might be fun to discuss what wisdom a Klingon Shaman might learn from Klingon animals.   We can start with the targh.

   The first thing we have to do is make sure we understand our animal.  We ask eachother what we think they eat, how they catch it as well as what eats them and how they avoid being eaten.   Any thoughts?
« Last Edit: 08 29, 2005, 11:34: AM by Klythe » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: 08 30, 2005, 09:53: AM »

I think that Animal Gods would be very very old in Klignon terms. Knowing the racism that Klingons have exhibited, and the deliniation of beigns capable of using language or not, I think worshiping animals would have to be way before these traits developed. We know that there is at least the one Dragon God, but I have never personally heard of any others.

Now here is an idea, perhaps the gods that were killed were the Animal Gods, and it was more of a celestial hunt than anything else. Could it be that as Klingons developed concepts of superiority, they no longer were able to conceive of worshiping food? Perhaps the hunt was in response to one of the great famines we have heard of. If the gods will not bring us food, we will hunt them as food. I'm not sure the concept is corect but it's been a long night & morning so I'm not on my A game here.
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« Reply #2 on: 08 30, 2005, 01:58: PM »

     Could be.  Though, there is a difference between worshiping animals as the deities themselves (I can't think of any who do), worshipping animals a  animals as a symbol or ward of a god(Hindu), worshipping the spirit of an etire animal species(As some Native American cultures), and worshipping gods that have some animal aspects to them(Ancient Egypt).

    Klingons still perform rutual hunts.  They are not above stalking and chasing the same as any other predatory animal.  Both Mara and Kor describe themselves and Klingons in general in predatory animal terms.   They snarl and howl.  They bare thier teeth when angry or threatened.  They may not have a concept of 'animal rights', but they don't shun animalistic attributes, instead, I'd go so far to say that in some cases they embrace them.

    So it's safe to say that Klingons will not venerate or attempt to emulate prey animals who's survival strategy involves hiding or fleeing.  But predators and possibly prey animals that fight back and/or are heavily armoured, why wouldn't ancient Klingons see 'magic' and power in such beasts, and wonder if perhaps thier adaptations may have been gifts of some kind of god?
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« Reply #3 on: 08 31, 2005, 07:36: AM »

perhaps the fact that Klingons do bare thier teeth and growl is why the destinction is made by those who use language and not those who don't snarl. The difference is not so much about what we do that isn't animal like, but what animals don't do that is klingon like. I agree that Klingons as a race have not left behind all that is animal, in fact to some Klinogns are little more than talking beasts themselves. That may not be all that far from the truth.

Now ritual hunting, could be a reinactment of the hunt for the gods, or not. I had not thought of the animal god being anything other than the god themself. I don't see Klignons worshiping a half beast god like the ancient Egyptians, simply becasue we have seen how modern Klingons react poorly to mixed races. I think the general concept is to not dilute Klingon blood. I don't think Klingons would have developed animal rights because they really don't have much in the way of non-Klingon rights.

I think that the veneration of prey is more like Tosk, in that they are venerated for what they are, not what they could be. The best targh one has ever hunted is still a targh. A mighty targh that gave one a hunt to remember and sing about, but a targh none the less. It is entirely a different kind of veneration than one would give to a great General or Emperor like Kahless.
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« Reply #4 on: 09 04, 2005, 11:06: AM »

   The topic of the status of animals in Klingon society has been split off into a new thread.  It may continue to be on topic here, but I thought it deserved it's own thread,  it is a very interesting topic.
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« Reply #5 on: 09 04, 2005, 12:31: PM »

Hopefully both threads will prosper, but I think that the status of animals in general is directly related to animals being able to be gods or servants of the gods. We do know of one Klingon animal god, but we also know that Klingons hunt anmals for food. Perhaps dragons are forbiden to eat, and seen as more godlike than food like. Perhaps Durgath was capable of using language. Most of my argument does not allow for a talking animal. Imagine how confusing Mr. Ed would be in a culture with such rigid divisions, let alone a Narnian like Aslan.

Now Pawns & Symbols also shows us a Klingon culture that is different from mainstream Imperial society, with moslem like head scarves for the women. It follows that if such a culture could flourish apart from or at least along side of Imperial society, that perhaps a Durgath worshiping culture could do the same, even in the face of the majority being flesh-eaters. I have alsys seen the Empire as poly-religious, so there is definately room for paralels to develop. Makes it interesting to see that despite such differences, we have seen no evidence of modern holy wars among Klingons. Modern politial wars, for sure, but never an expressed culture war.
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« Reply #6 on: 09 04, 2005, 04:52: PM »

Quote
quoth qoSagh 08 31, 2005, 07:36: AM
I had not thought of the animal god being anything other than the god themself. I don't see Klignons worshiping a half beast god like the ancient Egyptians, simply becasue we have seen how modern Klingons react poorly to mixed races. I think the general concept is to not dilute Klingon blood. I don't think Klingons would have developed animal rights because they really don't have much in the way of non-Klingon rights.

What of the fek’lhr? Does this not qualify as a half beast god?

The negative reactions to those of mixed ancestry is more an artifact of post-Praxis pacification of the Empire by the Federation than anything innate within the Klingon cultures (where do you think those poly-religions came from?). The Empire was formed over time by the conquering and assimilation of other peoples who give the general population more heterogeneity than most modern Imperials care to think about -- as indicated by the strict gender segregation of Tsorn alluded to in the above post.

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« Reply #7 on: 09 11, 2005, 11:36: AM »

You Know, it Occurs to me that this Could (Purely Theorhetical), actually Explain Something Interesting in Klingon Pre-history... What if This Question of Animal Gods Is Not at the heart of The Equally Interesting Discussion about The Killing of Klingon Gods...

If there Had Been an Animal Deity in some Remote Pre-historical Past, And Had that Deity Been a Representation of a Once Living Creature, Perhaps a Terrible Predator that Was On the Verge of Dieing out for What Ever Reason, AND Klingons had Relied on that Animal as a Source of Food and Or Clothing, (Perhaps it's Dung made Good Fuel I Dunno'), but at any rate Let us say it's Survival was in some way Connected to the Percieved Survival of The Proto-Klin in Question... Were That Animal to Die off within the Distant Memory of those Early Klingons, Either Through Hunting to Extinction or Because of Some other Real or Assumed Act of the Tribals, then Might they Have seen this as Having killed their Gods?

The Klingon Alters that we have seen in Cannon sources have been Directly Connected to The Veneration of QeylIS (Kahless), and Since the Fek'lhr is Not a God (Or Devil), I am Not sure that it is Part of the Discussion... If it were however, there are Certainly "Beastly" Traits there... At Any Rate there has Been (To my Knowledge) no Direct reference to The Physical Nature of any Klingon Deity...

Thus like many of these discussions I find that the Answers must come from Fandom... If We Make it So, So Shall it be... Personally I do not find it Difficult to Imagine Early Klingons Worshipping God(s) Partially or Fully Represented by an Animal... Rather their Temples would be Standing today or not is another Issue... I Think that The Priests of QeylIS have Likely been jealous and Ensured that the Image of QeylIS has Stood Higher and Taller than any other Potential Past Deity...
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« Reply #8 on: 09 11, 2005, 01:42: PM »

Thats the Owellian trouble with you QeylIS worshiping types: Two legs good & four legs bad, lol.

It is intersting that the fact of Killing the gods could be more of a perception of events and not an actual memory of events. I had never thought of that. I will have to think of how that would have worked with my vanquishing theory.
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« Reply #9 on: 09 11, 2005, 01:57: PM »

The Fek'lhr is certainly part of the discussion, as a supernatural being or at least a myth, he is every bit a 'god' as Kahless.   Keep in mind not all gods are revered.    Some are to be feared, some of these may be placated, others can't.   Yet other gods need be merely acknowledged.  The Fek'lhr may not be revered as a god, but I imagine he is feared like a devil, even though  using Greek/Roman gods as an analogy, the Fek'lhr would be Cerberus/Kerberos to the Devil's Hades.   The Fek'lhr is meant to be not exactly feared with abject terror but still is to be respected as an enemy that may not be defeated.    Listen to the mothers telling their children, "Only by being good little honorable Kingons can you hope to avoid him, so be honorable like Kahless, little Kenny'."

Quote
The negative reactions to those of mixed ancestry is more an artifact of post-Praxis pacification of the Empire by the Federation than anything innate within the Klingon cultures

     I'm quiet surprised to here this from a Klingon Fusion...  Are you discounting the term kuveleta entirely then?

Quote
Now Pawns & Symbols also shows us a Klingon culture that is different from mainstream Imperial society, with moslem like head scarves for the women. It follows that if such a culture could flourish apart from or at least along side of Imperial society, that perhaps a Durgath worshiping culture could do the same, even in the face of the majority being flesh-eaters. I have alsys seen the Empire as poly-religious, so there is definately room for paralels to develop. Makes it interesting to see that despite such differences, we have seen no evidence of modern holy wars among Klingons. Modern politial wars, for sure, but never an expressed culture war.

    In Pawns and Symbols, the Emperor-to-be was a Durgath worshipper, and he was a flesh eater.   The Emperor used imagery of Durgath as the symbol of his power(we assume he is also a flesh-eater).   If you accept Pawns and Symbols there is no question that a Durgath Worshipping culture could flourish, in that book it was the central mythology.

   Also I have to disagree, political wars are nearly exclusively also culture wars, and quite often religious ones as well.   In fact I challenge you to name any political war in which the opposing sides had the same vision for the culture and the role of the people in it.
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« Reply #10 on: 09 12, 2005, 04:02: PM »

I accept Pawns and Symbols at least as much as (Klingon Blasphemy Alert) The Final Reflection. We got to see many interesting culture issues brought up in both. If I remember correctly the world who's women wore veils were not Durgath worshipers, and that fact of multiple Klingon religions is pretty much what allowed the qaptaQ to come into being.

As for meat eaters, I would have to assume that being omnivores, Klingons would probably not revere an herbivore, so Durgath probably eats meat, perhaps even Klingons. This tells me once again hat there may be different classes of animals. There is another option which I hadn't thought of until now, what if Durgath could speak? That would put him in the category of using language, and thus make him not prey. I am thinking of Narnia, in that there were talking animals and non-talking animals, as well as Aslan who I can't see anyone confusing with prey.
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« Reply #11 on: 09 14, 2005, 09:54: AM »

I Still have Not Read Pawns and Symbols... But as it has Been Repeatedly Referenced Here, perhaps I had Better Consider it sooner rather than Later...

As to Narnia, C.S. Lewis is such an Interesting Example of Scientist Come Religious Philosopher... As A Child I Loved the Narnia Stories. As An Adult I Have begun to share them with my Daughter... I have to say though, that the Christian Imagery Constantly Bonking me on the Head Gets a Little Bit Tedious and preachy, Still, I am Very Much Looking Forward to Seeing the Film... (Kinda' Wish Peter Jackson had Gotten this Series as well however...<Sigh>... My Faith in Disney is running Pretty Low these Days)...

The Point about the Talking Beast vs. the "Normal" animals is significant though, because it Creates "Values" which can be applied to Different Types of Life... If an Animal God Were a Non-speaking Creature, I Doubt that it would have the Impact on the Ever Pragmatic Klingon Psyche that it's Talking Counter parts would have... I Feel Strongly that the Klingon Perception would be that their Gods would be capable of Speach, regardless of Form... THough this is just Opinion Since as Stated  I have not Read the Book Pawns and Symbols...
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« Reply #12 on: 09 14, 2005, 01:42: PM »

Although this runs way off topic, I felt it was an interesting aside. For years I had heard that Narnia was full of Christian imagery, including one person who told me it was little more than a retelling of the Holy Bible. Since one of the places I had heard this was in religion classes, I took it pretty much as fact. I had read the chronicles as a child, but at that point didn't have the frame of reference to compare the two. This year while I was researching some Narnia trivia that came up in a discussion, I found a couple of sites that dispute that whole theory. These sites were adamant that C.S. Lewis had placed ANTI-Christian images in his works, and was in fact not the great Christian author that some believe him to be.

My use of Narnia as a reference here was only to the time of creation shown in The Magician's Nephew (which is really the first book, although Disney will never admit it). Aslan is shown giving the gift of speech to one male and one female of each animal species. In later stories, this is the explanation as to why some animals talk and others don't, it is a matter of lineage.

As for Durgath talking, I would think that if Durgath was the actual god in question than he would have to. Simply because, as the Abbot pointed out, Klingons would probably not Revere or worship one that was incapable of speech. If Durgath was the messenger/servant/symbol of the god, speech might not be required. I don't think anyone would expect a god to ride a talking horse after all.
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« Reply #13 on: 09 16, 2005, 06:05: PM »

I Do not Fear the Off Topic Issue as Much as Some so I Will Follow up the Narnia Comments Briefly...

C.S. Lewis went So Far as to Refer to Humans (Particularly Children), as the Sons and Daughters of Adam and Eve respectively, Aslan is Crucified as a Self Sacrifice to Save the World From Evil and Rises from the Dead to Appear Occasionally to the Faithful For Guidance, and Of Course Leads the Last And Final Battle Against Evil in the Appropriately Titled "The Last Battle"...  All Very Christian Commentary (Though Not Uniquely So), but certainly enough to Support those that Recognize the Historical Nature of C.S. Lewis converting from Imperical Science to Christian Faith...

The Detractors Most Commonly Site Concepts Such as the Use of Magic and Talking Animals as being Anti-Christian sentiments, Which when Looked at through the Puritanical Lenses of Fundementalism, they Would be... But that is the Same Sort of Thinking that was used to Justify such Ugly Church Supported Activities as the "Holy" Inquisition and Later Witch Hunts... The Reality is that there is a Great Deal of Spiritualism within Christianity (And it's Root Religion of Judeaism), and It was this aspect that C.S. Lewis was Tapping into... None of Which is any More Bizzare then most of the Old Testiment...<Grin>...

So to Keep this Vaguely on topic I will add that Klingons Would Likely Appreciate the Narnian Stories as Being Morality Tales, whose Symbolic Significance would be the Important Part of the Telling of them.
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« Reply #14 on: 12 08, 2005, 12:47: AM »

If a Klingon has a family, he heads his house with honor. If a Klingon serves the Empire in any capacity, he/she does so with honor. And if a Klingon faces an enemy in battle? He/she kills or dies with honor. It is sufficient enough to know and to live by these things. Bah! Of what use are gods--be they man or beast? Drink your bloodwine.
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« Reply #15 on: 12 08, 2005, 01:45: AM »

My use of Narnia as a reference here was only to the time of creation shown in The Magician's Nephew (which is really the first book, although Disney will never admit it). Aslan is shown giving the gift of speech to one male and one female of each animal species. In later stories, this is the explanation as to why some animals talk and others don't, it is a matter of lineage.

    I just read this book a few weeks ago for the first time.   Aslan selected the speaking animals by his own criterion, presumed to be the merits and strength of their hearts and minds.   Some animals both the male and the female were selected, some animals, only one of the animals was selected, and for some species none was selected.

    And yes, I'd have to say a being attributed godlike powers in almost certainly going to be attributed the powers of speech or some other form of communication comprehensible to those who attribute powers to the animal.

   
Quote
If a Klingon has a family, he heads his house with honor. If a Klingon serves the Empire in any capacity, he/she does so with honor. And if a Klingon faces an enemy in battle? He/she kills or dies with honor. It is sufficient enough to know and to live by these things. Bah! Of what use are gods--be they man or beast? Drink your bloodwine.

    Bloodwine is too tame for my tongue.  Bring me my neqtaI! 

    As for they gods, they are metaphors, puzzles, enigmas, challenges for your mind and heart.   A warrior cannot think with the one's sword arm.  The warrior also must exercises his heart and mind.   Without anything to believe in, a warrior is nothing but a weapon in the hands of his superiors and what they believe.
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« Reply #16 on: 12 08, 2005, 02:22: AM »

A warrior who prefers the substantial to the abstract is no more of a mindless automaton than the warrior who regards the philosophical nature of his navel. (Hearty Laugh) tlhIngan maH! But we are not all
of the same predispositions.
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« Reply #17 on: 12 08, 2005, 07:44: PM »

     Tongue  Language is by it's very nature abstract and you seem to perfer using language than more substantial/concret methods of communication, so perhaps you do not always perfer the substantial over the abstract.    I will tell you what I perfer.  Since I accept that language is fundamentally abstract, I perfer to try to understand the abstractions in language.  The classifications and the metaphors of language are nothing if not abstractions.  In naming them, I can understand them, and I can I master them.  Any less and they master you.  

     The stories of Kahless are no more substantial than the stories of Durgath, or of Kotar.  So why do you seek one and shun the others?  If you perfer the substantial, then you should also discard the old highly distorted stories of Kahless for what they are.

    If you wish to join us in discovering new truths, you are welcome.   But you are not welcome to hijack this thread, when there is another perfectly good thread for questioning whether Klingon gods exist or not
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« Reply #18 on: 12 08, 2005, 09:00: PM »

yIDoghQo' ! I have no wish to highjack anything. naDev qaS wanl' ramqu' I have moved on. qay'be'


yIDoghQo': roughly "don't be silly/foolish."   naDev qaS wanl' ramqu' : "there is nothing happening here."

qay'be': " no problem!"   cool
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« Reply #19 on: 04 09, 2008, 02:04: PM »

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...Durgath was described by Lt. Czery as a dragon a mythical beings common to many Terran cultures.   Many Terran cultures have animal gods, or worship animal spirits as gods.  Cultures that have one animal god typically have many... 

A dragon isn't an animal, technically.

What Worf de-evolved into in TNG Genesis could fairly easily be described as "draconian."   Perhaps the form of Durgath was derived from an evolved part of the species encountering a branch that had not evolved, presumably one that subsequently died off.  This description may have changed slightly through the ages ending in it being much larger than life.
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« Reply #20 on: 04 09, 2008, 03:28: PM »


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A dragon isn't an animal, technically.

     Well, if you want to get technical... it is.  The scientific definition of animals refers to their lack of rigid cellular walls and chemicals that can be used to create it's own food, such as chlorophyll.   This indicates a necesity on consuming other organism for survival and general tendancy to be self-mobile. 

    I didn't even think about that protolizard Worf thing.   Mostly because I discarded it out of paw.  If Klingons, hyoomins, Romulans and Cardassians are all children of the same alien species that seeded intelligent life around the universe...  How could they have evolved from reptiles while Hyoomins evolved from apes?   But if you ignore that or figure perhaps the ancient ones genetically engineered apes and draconian beasts...    Then you have something interesting indeed.   You don't need "evolved" and "unevolved" populations co-existing (and if you did, why make a deity of a 'less evolved' civilization you were in the process of wiping out?).   You could have modern Klingons discovering cave drawings and other art drawn by the primitives...

    The ideas of evolution in Star Trek unfortunately then to follow the popular view where evolution is some kind of single step process with a discrete beginning and a particular end in mind.  It's funny how a show that tries so hard to use the latest discoveries in particle physics as central elements of the plot can be so consistantly painfully wrong when it comes to biological science.
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