Ashiqa

Ashiqa (literally "shrine maidens") are a group of Harathi wise women trained in an amalgamation between esoteric Nagaism, Veraism and ancestral worship. The group is an exclusive sisterhood whose members focus on developing spiritual power and insight by achieving oneness with the gods. Found almost excuslively in rural communities, the Ashiqa have taken upon themselves the responsiblity for serving at Nagaist shrines across Shimah. Through means of trances and prophecy, these women go into trances and convey the words of gods.

Most of these mountain mystics serve as spiritual leaders or holy women on the island of Shimah, where they are a religious and political force. The Ashiqa prefer to further their own goals with indirect methods rather than asserting direct control themselves. The Ashiqa studied not only religious texts and images, but also trained in martial arts to discourage bandits and outlaws from attacking them.

See also

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