Culture and Lifestyle


image The most notable aspect of Xilon culture is that there is no government, ruling structure or class system. There are localized city, town and village councils run by the elders in each area, some of whom have galaxy-wide influence and who set down expectations for the younger members of their society. But in general, the Xilon live together as one massive peaceful community scattered across the central planets, with smaller settlements throughout the Aeradisphere. Crime, hate and fear are virtually nonexistent. Youngsters and those who have never traveled to the universe beyond would not even understand those words since such a mentality simply does not apply to their culture. Loss and pain rarely mean more than the natural death of a loved one, and while a few rogues might stir up trouble now and then, it is hardly on the level that other societies might experience.

image When it comes to day-to-day routine, there are no set jobs or individual requirements. Most adults spend their time socializing or doing work that they enjoy and personally choose to do (hunting, teaching, farming, cooking, making clothes and so on), which they freely share with anyone who wants or needs their skills. Those who are lazy or who refuse to work at all are looked down upon but are still given the same resources and opportunities as anyone else.

For the first few millenia of their lives, children attend classes at institutions called learning centers, which are scattered across the five main planets and a few of the border worlds and planetoids throughout Chrysalian. During this time, they learn universal geography, complex mathematics and sciences, philosophy, four different forms of Xilon speech, one form of written language, how to control their time/space abilities, how to fly, basic combat skills, and an array of important crafts.

image Once their primary training is complete, those who wish to pursue more specific trades move on to special centers that focus on developing particular skills. Depending on how many different subjects they wish to focus on, secondary learning can last anywhere from a few hundred to a few hundred thousand more years. Those studying to be Watchers or Guardians undergo intensive training to oversee the progression of time and space. Although violence is almost nonexistent at home, fighting is a skill that those intending to travel widely should have, and is required for those interested in acting as Watchmen of the outside world. In addition to physical combat, separate learning centers run by veteran travelers teach the histories, cultures, customs and languages of countless other species, planets and galaxies to those who might be interested in using their abilities to explore the farthest corners of the universe and to guide lower life forms in a more informal capacity.

image While the Xilon have a plethora of stories that may seem akin to mythology, they do not have any true form of religion. So-called "creation myths" and other fairytales are used as metaphors to introduce children (or even outsiders) to the complex sciences behind the innerworkings of the universe. As the children progress through their learning years, these stories serve as an important foundation for understanding scientific fact. References to abstract places or events such as The Andalasian Gate help youngsters to more easily comprehend the natural forces behind them.

Given their ability to jump through time and space, the central worlds are like one small country to the Xilon and it is commonplace for an individual to go back and forth between the different planets numerous times a day. Social life is generally low key, although large banquets, sports and competitions, animal races, live performances and other pastimes are common, hosted by communities on a regular basis.

image When it comes to love and relationships, the Xilon take a simplistic approach. If two individuals connect, they become a pair and often stay together for life. If not, neither party thinks twice about it and moves on. The term "soul mates," or araa jale maen in Jzesan, is a very literal phrase, representing an actual biological bond. It refers to two individuals who each possess one half of a unique code in their chemical makeup. If they find each other, they physically become two halves of a whole, sharing each other's thoughts, memories and feelings when together. Even apart, they have a close telepathic connection and can always "feel" the other's presence, no matter where they are.

Due to the fact that soul mates are often born thousands to millions of years apart, the odds of them meeting somewhere in time and space are fairly low. Only about 35% of the Xilon population will ever find their true genetic counterparts. However, almost all Xilon do find a mate that they bind themselves to in a social ritual akin to marriage. If, along the way, one member of the couple discovers his or her araa jale, it is a mutual understanding that their current union will end and they will join with their intended counterpart, merely a natural part of life that all members of the species accept. Technology  >>

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