The Divine Republic of Aldaar
جمهورية الدار الالهية
Official Flag of Aldaar
Motto: Mercy above all, at any cost.
Map of Aldaar
• 2020 estimate
|GDP (PPP)||2023 estimate|
|25.70 Billion KRB|
• Per capita
|Currency||Aldaari Muhaara (AMH)|
|Date format||DD/M/YYY (Aldaari Calendar) DD/MM/YYYY (International Calendar)|
|ISO 3166 code||ALD|
Aldaar (Asahri: الدار), officially The Divine Republic of Aldaar (جمهورية الدارس الالهية [jum-HUUR-ya al-DAAR-su a-laa-la-HII-ya]) is a theocratic republic located in the Anabat Desert of Alaria, a subcontinent of Gondwana. It borders Askaraban to the south and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The Aldaari city of Hasa is the birthplace of the national Dawra religion, and Aldaar's capital and most populous city is the coastal city of Mukarras.
It is unknown exactly how or when people first arrived in Aldaar, but the prevailing belief is that the deserts of Aldaar were originally settled 200,000 years ago by Orcs migrating southwards as a result of desertification who managed to make their home in the vast desert; however, a less-supported theory holds that the desert is actually the homeland of the entire Orcish species long lost to the same desertification process, and the people living there were staying behind and gradually learned to adapt over generations. Eventually, Humans would migrate to the Anabat and, due to having generally longer life expectancies and requiring less caloric intake, would become the dominant species in the area around 50,000 years ago. Meanwhile, the first evidence of Aldaari Vulpines comes about 36,000 years ago. Due to the harsh desert conditions in the area, as well as a broad mountain range to the south, contact between the Aldaari peoples and external governments was virtually non-existent for most of history, with only sparse trade between the southernmost tribes and the Emirate of Sayyed. As these tribes often funneled goods throughout the entire desert, this led to the entire Aldaari language of Asahri having close ties to the Sayqidi languages of Atasiyaqidu and Haqen. However, the Aldaari tribes otherwise developed a unique cultural identity tied strongly to desert life.
Around the beginning of the Middle Ages, the Aldaari tribes began to see a massive influx of new population as several countries began sending their criminals and exiles to the Anabat Desert. The majority of these exiles were taken in and reintegrated into desert society by the Aldaari tribes, which each became extremely diverse, and led to technological advancements which would cause some tribes to become at least partially settled starting in the 12th century. In the early 17th century, the Dawran prophet Suleiman Abd'ildarra would unite the Aldaari tribes into a single nation, which would last until 1844 when disputes over succession caused the country to split into seven separate republics. In the 1920s, foreign multinational corporations would discover vast oil reserves in the desert and begin to supersede local authority, in some cases setting up banana republics and in other cases outright corporatocracies. These were plagued by cultural suppression and popular resistance, and in 2022 a new Dawra prophet Yufraan Abd'ildarra would lead a popular revolution in the Republic of Mukarras, and reform the Divine Republic of Aldaar with the intention of once more uniting the desert.
The Divine Republic of Aldaar is a theocratic republic with seven branches of government and three separate unicameral legislatures. Its current Head of State is Yufraan Abd'ildarra, who also serves as the religious head of Dawra. Aldaar is a relatively lower-income country with a high HDI of 0.743; in addition, it holds a large quantity of the world's oil reserves which are under the control of foreign MNCs. It has a medium Gini score of 39.2, which is on the increase, with many economic theorists pointing to the fact that some Aldaaris have become much richer following the collapse of oppressive economic systems under Golden Oil's rule, while Aldaaris in extremely rural areas still maintain a subsistence lifestyle with generally low personal income. As such, the Gini coefficient is typically not viewed as the most accurate measure of Aldaar's wealth disparity due to the prevalence of bartering. Aldaar is a leading exporter of many unrefined goods, including spices, livestock, fruit, uncommon stones such as obsidian, and handcrafted consumer goods such as textiles. In addition, Aldaar frequently sees massive upticks in tourism during the spring, during the desert bloom which locals call Rajwanii Avaznir (رجوني أفزنر), or Purple Sands. This coincides with the Aldaari New Year which takes place during the vernal equinox and is a time of colorful cultural celebration, which is also a draw for tourists; as a result the Aldaari government sees a massive influx of income around March, which dies down going into the summer. This has also led to a system of pop-up hotels, which operate as office buildings most of the year and shift towards hotels in the spring.
While the culture and beliefs of Aldaar are similar to other historically tribal nations, they developed completely independently from almost any other civilization. Aldaari culture focuses around the Three Tenets, a set of guidelines that most Aldaaris try to live by, including helping those in need, practicing forgiveness, and attempting to cultivate a deeper understanding of the nature of change. Aldaari culture also revolves significantly around spirituality and the most common religion, Dawra, which was founded near the Aldaari city of Hasa. Dawra is a polytheistic religion in which many individual spirits are viewed as part of a larger whole, called Ildarra (إلضرة), who embodies the concept of change and forward movement. In addition, Dawra recognizes two other similar deities, Arzaal (أرزال), embodying remaining at a standstill, and Salahayr (سلحاير), or "The Ancestor Spirit," the embodiment of the past and moving backwards. However, these deities are not worshiped, and in many Dawran myths are portrayed as foolish or in some cases outright villainous. The Aldaari recognize the Mutadiit, Aldaar's head of state, as the voice of Ildarra here on Urth, and as such the Mutadiit is usually considered to be the wisest and most knowledgeable of all Aldaari. The most important Aldaari holiday Alnahda, or the Aldaari New Year, stems from Dawran beliefs, but has always been widely practiced as a secular holiday.
The modern name Aldaar was first used to describe the area and corresponding country in the 17th century when Suleiman Abd'ildarra founded the nation. He based the name off of the colloquial term for the area used by its residents, Aldaarnu (الدارن), which in Asahri simply means "Our Home." Suleiman removed the suffix -nu, meaning "our," because he wanted to establish his nation as a safe haven for all people; not just those who already lived in the desert; "Aldaar" simply meaning "Home." Since then, Aldaar has always been used as the name for the area, even for the approximately two centuries that the nation of Aldaar had ceased to exist. When Yufraan Abd'ildarra refounded the country, they chose to keep the name the same, wanting to reemphasize it as their people's home and a home to anyone who wished to be there, as well as establish a connection between their regime and the historical state.
It's widely accepted that the very first sapient species to settle the Anabat desert were Orcs, with the first definitive evidence coming from about 200,000 BCE. However, some believe that fossils found near the Anabat which date back over 400,000 years prove that Orcs have inhabited Aldaar for almost their entire evolutionary history. Knowledge of migration patterns, the desertification process, and the lack of many archeological investigations within Aldaar have caused two main competing theories to emerge. The first theory states that Orcs migrated to the Anabat due to a mixture of social exile and natural movement patterns, given that the desert boasts a large variety of flora and fauna that could have supported small hunter-gatherer societies that were constantly on the move and looking to avoid overusing land during a minor population boom. However, a less substantiated theory more supported by the general public aims to prove that the Anabat was the original location of Orcish evolution, and that instead of Orcs migrating inwards to Aldaar despite desertification, Orcs migrated outwards from Aldaar because of desertification. Interestingly, this view is supported by large numbers of the Aldaari Orcish population, who claim it as a source of pride.
The first evidence of Human settlement in Aldaar comes from about 60,000 BCE, in the form of cave paintings found in the southern mountain ranges. Utilizing bows while much of the previous populace was still using much less resource-intensive slings, new Human bands were able to hunt much more efficiently leading to a greater food surplus. This, combined with the fact that Humans required far less calories to survive than Orcs did, would make Humans the dominant species in Aldaar about 10,000 years after they first arrived. Despite this demographic shift, Orcs and Humans were extremely cooperative and frequently worked together, with there being evidence to support the idea that they even formed tribes together. Contrary to many societies, division of labor tended to be split along species, with the more resilient orcs gathering and fishing and the quicker, smaller humans being the hunters; there is no evidence to suggest that gender or sex played any specific societal role in the majority of Aldaari tribes.
Aldaari Vulpines (also called Fennec Vulpines) were first living in the desert in about 34,000 BCE, at which point they entered the larger societal structure and began to largely take the hunting roles from Humans, due to Fennec Vulpines' natural camouflage, smaller stature, enhanced senses, and increased heat tolerance. It is currently unknown exactly how Fennec Vulpines evolved, but as with many archeological and anthropological debates around Aldaar, there are two main competing schools of thought. The first is that groups of Vulpines split off from Yasterian Vulpines and followed waves of humans migrating to Gondwana. From there, Vulpines traced through the exact same evolutionary adaptations as non-sapient fennec foxes, making them distinct from both Northern and Southern Vulpines. This theory is regularly criticized for the sheer distance between Gondwana and Yasteria, however, proponents suggest that Vulpines followed Humans migrating through Novaris. The other theory is that Aldaari Vulpines evolved completely separately from Yasterian Vulpines and share traits mostly due to the fact that they both developed from foxes. Critics of the theory point out the extremely short evolutionary timeline, which is countered by claims that Fennec Vulpines evolved prior to the first evidence of them, and the extreme coincidence of two separate sapient species developing that similarly to one another, which is generally countered by the fact that the sheer number of sapient species on Urth already seems to be a scientific anomaly, so by raw percentages it isn't actually that unrealistic compared to what's already been proven.
One of the most important developments during the prehistoric period of Aldaari history was the advent of trading societies, with some entire tribes dedicated solely to trade. These tribes would take raw materials such as fabric, clay, and beads, and would craft them into goods such as rugs, jewelry, pottery, clothing, and even high-end weaponry. These finished products would then be traded for basic resources, such as food, as well as more raw materials. Trade was largely within Aldaari tribes, but some southern tribes would also trade with those across the southern mountain range, who tended to have more centralized groups. Eventually, the weight of goods combined with the harsh reality of desert travel would lead to the development of one of Urth's first currencies, as Aldaari tribes rapidly adopted the use of shells as placeholders for physical goods around 20,000 BCE. This also led to a strong culture of Aldaari craftsmanship which has carried on into the 21st century.
Around the 2nd millenium BCE, Aldaari tribes would begin inscribing written characters into clay and soft stone tablets as a method of storing information, providing historians with samples of Aldaar's ancient language, Uuba. Uuba had been a spoken language for tens of thousands of years and is believed to date back to even before Humans arrived in the Anabat, due to similarities with other languages spoken by orcs in Rodoka and Ni-Rao. The development of writing appears to have had an extremely transformative impact on Aldaari culture, with an explosion of archeological and anthropological evidence from this point onwards due to the large number of surviving texts. The Aldaari peoples adopted a shared culture of storytelling using written histories and epics. Literacy rates appear to have been extremely high due to the advent of paper-making practices in oasis cities like Nafaq, which tribes would then trade as a finished product. There were even entire professions centered around the productions of writing tools, using cotton to make paper and making ink out of coffee and gum asahri. The advent of writing also fostered the development of shared cultural and spiritual beliefs throughout the desert, created a sort of legal code, bolstered trade, and inspired scientific advancement.
Culture in Ancient Aldaar
The development of a shared Aldaari identity, combined with the harsh realities of desert life, led to the creation and proliferation of the Three Tenets, or Allamtii al-Anabat, "The Way of the Desert." The Three Tenets were a system of guidelines for the Aldaari people and to this day operate as a moral code for desert life, forming a sort of survivors' etiquette. They would provide the basis for many cultural and historical developments and have heavily influenced the lives of almost all Aldaari people. The Three Tenets are as follows:
- Always treat other people with mercy and compassion in their hours of need.
- Keep forgiveness in your heart for all people, and reject all forms of hate.
- Remember that everything changes, and everything is connected; every action has a reaction, every consequence a cause.
Of these, the third tenet is likely the most well known and closely correlated with modern Aldaari culture. The idea that everything changes is viewed as crucial to understanding life and the world around you, and as a result Aldaari groups have always been quick adapters of new technological, social, economic, and political ideas. All three tenets appear to have been designed with practicality in mind - sandstorms, intense heat, food scarcity, and many other environmental pressures meant that life in the wastes wasn't easy, and the tenets appear to have tried to reduce interpersonal tensions and build community, knowing that the people were stronger together and that nobody in the desert needed any additional challenges to face.
Aldaari history after the invention of writing has been described as a "post-neolithic golden era," and local advances in technology were no exception. Perhaps the most critical advancements were those that related to food production, as for many millennia food had been extremely scarce on the desert, requiring most tribes to utilize a migratory hunter-gatherer structure. However, the spread of ideas that came with the rise of writing allowed many developments in this field, notably the rise in aquaculture. The Aldaaris were some of the first people to do this, farming fish by constructing complex series of dams and channels and using woven traps to capture bred fish for consumption and trade. These developments encouraged the rise of Aldaar's first settled tribes, many of whom embraced a sedentary life on the northwest coast of the continent founding Aldaar's first permanent settlements, some of which remain to this day. Around the 5th century BCE, records indicate many more tools were developed that further benefited the culture of fishing that had sprung up, including fishing rods, cotton nets, and small fishing boats, which further contributed to the building of a food surplus that allowed the expansion of commerce in the Anabat.
Around the same time, tribes near the Nafaq Oasis began to develop irrigation systems and planting practices for the many types of flora native to the area, including cotton, apples, plums, peaches, pomegranates, dates, corn, squash, tomatoes, sorghum, herbs, tea, and coffee, among many others. Of theses, the most crucial were cotton, dates, corn, and tea, with each growing easily and being extremely versatile. In addition, agave began being harvested and processed to make teqiilyatlaan, or as it's more commonly known, tequila. The development of alcohol was important, as it kept water safe during long cross-desert journeys and overall made water much safer to drink. The Nafaq Oasis, and others like it, proved to be a perfect environment for growing many crops and herbs, and the massive expansion of inland agriculture allowed for an even greater expansion of the food surplus. It also allowed for the creation of new foods, which were both healthier and had higher caloric value. Overall, the agricultural revolution of the Anabat helped shift Aldaari society towards significantly more sedentary, as being able to grow foods even in the desert would allow for the development of a more traditional societal structure. That being said, many tribes chose to remain mobile throughout their history.
One of the areas of Aldaari society that was most significantly impacted by new ideas and technologies was trade and craftsmanship. During this period, more and more specialized professions began to emerge. Notably, herbalists developed their craft by unlocking the secrets of anabat peyote and tanshiit, along with other local herbs, which allowed for the creation of powerful herbal blends with any number of unique reactions. Indeed, healing salves made using tanshiit remained on par with modern medicine until acetaminophen began being widely distributed in the 1950s. Weavers laced together intricately made rugs, camel saddles, clothing, and pouches from cotton and dye, and also played an important role in making fishing gear and other woven goods. These, along with many other crafts such as carpentry, masonry, fletching, and others, would lead to the development of the Kaastas, which divided people (and sometimes whole tribes) based off of profession. The craftsmen, builders, farmers, and fishermen became the largest caste, the Jintay. Writers, musicians, scientists, and herbalists became part of the Amanshii. And hunters, organizers, and tribal leaders became the Kauda. While many caste systems function as a hierarchy, each caste knew that they were all equally important and necessary to thrive in the desert.
Many miscellaneous technological advancements were made in Aldaar during this time period that served to improve quality of life. Astrolabes, which had been first obtained from foreign merchants, allowed traders to more easily cross the desert without getting lost. The development of recurve composite bows, leather bracers, thumb rings, and blunt arrowheads all allowed for more efficient hunting, and the use of obsidian for knives and other blades made many processes to refine goods simpler and quicker. The development of camel saddles and camel riding practices allowed for easy transportation of goods across vast swathes of desert, with the riders sitting behind the hump of the camel to allow for both riding and packing of heavy goods. In some cases, two-person saddles would be used, generally for the riders who led larger caravans. The invention and continued development of the loom allowed for fabrics to be made more easily and overall lead to an increase in the amount of cotton goods. More techniques emerged for the extraction of stones such as obsidian, turquoise, malachite, and opal, which for the most part were traded to early Sayqidi jewelers across the southern mountain range. In exchange traders learned about techniques for metalworking, although it didn't become a large part of Aldaari culture. Finally, many techniques emerged for herding, especially goats; many nomadic tribes would become at least partially pastoralist, relying on raised goats and camels for food, milk, and hide.
The advents of writing, trade, and collective storytelling in the Anabat led to a system of shared religious and spiritual beliefs collectively known as Pre-Dawrani. Pre-Dawrani faiths relied mostly on oral history for many beliefs to be passed on, even though specific stories were frequently written down. Pre-Dawranis, much like modern Dawranis, believed in a spiritual plane that awaited people after death where people were able to influence the natural world based on the things they did in their life. Some tribes believed that there was an entire separate civilization in the afterlife, filled with spirits that had banded together to make concerted efforts to influence the human world. All sapient beings were believed to have souls strong enough to permeate the veil between realms and influence each other, as well as cats, fennecs, corvids, and some other animals. Most myths and legends served to illustrate the importance of the three tenets and explain natural phenomena, and the religion adapted well with scientific discoveries such as the independent Aldaari discovery of heliocentrism. While Pre-Dawrani beliefs included some minor degree of ancestor worship, the prevailing belief was that one should not be beholden to their family's past and should live their own life.