BAJOR

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Bajoran Culture

 

by Hannar Bil'E (Barbara Heep)

"I read about the accomplishments of the ancient Bajoran civilization in my fifth grade reader. They were architects and artists; builders and philosophers when humans were not standing erect. Now I see how history has rewarded them." Picard TNG - Ensign Roe. This was my first introduction to Bajoran culture. I was fascinated with the Bajora from that moment. What a wonderfully rich culture the Star Trek creators made for us.

Bajoran Names: During the Itanu Ceremony (coming of age ceremony at age 14) Bajoran children choose their name. Their personal name comes last and is used only between friends. Bajor is traditionally a matriarchal society so the man changes his name to the woman's when they marry. I am properly addressed as Hannar. My chosen name, Bil'E, is rarely used.

Applause: Bajorans clap with palms facing up toward the Prophets, one hand against the back of the other.

Earrings: Each Bajoran earring has a unique design which is linked to the family clan and to their religious and social status. Bajorans believe the earring links their Pagh, or life force, to the Prophets. Monks can discern the Pagh through the ear.

Gratitude Festival: This is the most important religious holiday of the Bajoran calendar. Renewal Scrolls inscribed with personal problems are burned in ceremonial fires. This symbolically washes away the problems written upon them. The ceremonial greeting during the Gratitude Festival is "Peldar Joy."

D'jarras System: In the 92nd Century this caste system was in effect on Bajor. The d'jaara dictated the entire life of the people including their profession. D'jarras were enforced by sever laws which included exile or
death. The d'jaara caste system was discriminatory and required respect to be paid to persons born to a higher level. The untouchables belong to the lowest d'jaara and were responsible for burying the dead.

There are many more wonderful aspects to Bajoran culture involving interesting customs for death, betrothal, religion and separation from a spouse. But these listed above are some of my favorites and provide an interesting insight into Bajoran life.

May the Prophets walk with us. (Bajoran proverb) Hannar

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