It’s been a while since I posted about Ibvail’s culture. In case you don’t remember or are new to my blog, Ibvail is the nation that most of my characters in my WIP (Quest for Salvation) come from. I have written about the origins, evolution and magic of the world that I’ve created (you can find the posts by clicking on the links). I have written specifically about Ibvail as well. I have posts about religion, language, and a series on Ibvailyn history.
Now that you’re all caught up, let’s talk some more about the culture!
In Ibvail, scars and body modifications are considered unsightly. Even among soldiers, scars are a shame and hidden. This stems from their religious belief of non-violence. Thus evidence of wars and battles (scars being part of this evidence) was hidden as a blotch on the nation’s conscience. Over the years, this distaste for battle scars morphed into distaste for scars in general, no matter how a person got them.
A Priestess of the Path, having come into power in the Holy City, declared that not only were scars shameful, but any change that people made to their own bodies was an affront to the Path. She said it took away from the Oneness of all, to make the self different. Thus she rejected any means of changing the body, be it by tattooing, piercing, dying hair or even shaving. It did not take long for her teaching to catch on. In the cold climate of Ibvail, most people already ignored shaving for most of the year, and few people were involved in tattooing or piercing.
The Priestess’s teachings created a barrier between Ibvail and their neighbor, Salvyn, as the Salvynites frequently modified their bodies with tattoos and piercings. This barrier was important when Ibvail became an Empire and began taking territories as their own – it was a rallying point that the “heathens” did not know what it was to be One, as evinced by their practice of scarring themselves with ink.
In Ibvail, scars are hidden or covered, and no one speaks of them. People who have lost limbs (or even sight or hearing) are regarded as less than others and often hidden away by family.
Take care, fellow travelers.