Chanera

The Chanera were an organization of psionics who used the physical body to channel their powers. They were established in the days of the League of Systems, centuries before the civil war, and records compiled by the League indicated that the Chanera were founded by a Risan female from Karvoss II who discovered her psionic sensitivity while practicing a meditative form of martial arts. After she developed her own method of studying psionic powers she began to expand the tradition teaching others what she had learned.

Initially, the Chanera were unchecked in growth by the Esper Knights and developed into a nomadic order of about fifty to sixty members. Though the Council eventually attempted to integrate the Chanera into the knights, they were unsuccessful in doing so, as the Chanera were uninterested in the ways of the knights. The Chanera experienced persecution by the Galactic Empire during Civil War Era as all psionic traditions were. They however were one of the most targetted traditions besides the Esper Knights, but a few of their number did manage to survive and pass on their knowledge.

History

The Chanera tradition originated early on in the League period. The founding individual was a Risan female from Karvoss II who realized she was psionic while practicing meditative martial arts. In that period the Esper Knights had little need to identify, collect, and train all psionic children shortly after birth. Since the knights were large in number and the League had been peaceful they felt secure enough to allow other traditions to exist independently, provided that the other psionic groups did not give in to base temptations. As such, the woman was able to develop her own psionic skills and began teaching a few psionic students. Her students would then hand down her lessons to the next generation of Chanera. Their tradition was generally not located in one place, but instead its members became nomadic and spacefaring, though there were never more than fifty to sixty Chanera at any one time. The Chanera were said to be found virtually anywhere spacefaring beings were.

Eventually, the Esper Knights recognized the Chanera tradition as worthy of attention and sent a delegation to discuss affiliation with the Chanera. This occurred shortly after a failed knight attempted to create a relationship with another tradition of psionics, the Zeshan. Having heard that a Chanera and two apprentices had fended off several pirates near Radama, a meeting was arranged between the Chanera and knights in orbit over that world. The knights soon realized the Chanera had no interest in allying with them, but the knights did recommend that they be allowed to exist autonomously as most of their members were individuals who would not have been picked for knight training in the first place. The Chanera were allowed to exist separately from the Knights, and did so for hundreds of years. At one point a Knight Master engaged one in hand-to-hand combat exercise and afterward commented that he never wished to do so again because of how capable they were.

The Chanera were hunted down by Galactic Empire Inquisitors during the Civil War Era. They were one of the first organizations that the Empire attacked and most of them were slain during this period. A few escaped the Empire and went into hiding to survive the purge. Those survivors continued the tradition, passing it down to their apprentices. In particular The Travelers have a number of Chanera among their ranks.

The Chanera had no fixed organizational headquarters at any time. Instead, they wandered the galaxy in groups of three to five, never having more than fifty to sixty members overall in their order. They had at least two ranks, that of apprentice and that of the adept. Instructors were also permitted to have more than one apprentice in the Chanera tradition, though some chose not to take an apprentice at all.

Philosophy

Chanera philosophy was centered around creating a balance and harmony between the spirit and the physical body, using exercise as a form of meditation. Their training involved meditative martial arts, physical training, and somatic rituals. They were noted for being able to develop psionics in many beings who were not inherently gifted with them. Using their bodies as a focus, they emphasized keeping oneself clean and strong, purifying oneself through physical activity, and avoiding the dark temptations.

The balance of the physical and spiritual was the cornerstone of Chanera philosophy. The general tenets of the Chanera included keeping the body clean and strong, purifying themselves through physical activity, focusing psionics through exercise and ceremony, and avoiding the taint of dark temptations. Another Chanera teaching emphasized a flexibility of spirit that avoided becoming flustered or upset in order to maintain a stress-free and relaxed state. The purpose of this teaching was to allow the body to focus psionic energy with greater efficiency. Chanera philosophy encouraged the use of meditative martial arts, physical exercises, and somatic rituals in hopes of developing an inherently weak psionic ability into something stronger.

During training, a Chanera instructor had leeway in deciding exactly how to proceed, but trainees were frequently required to push the limits of their physical stamina while using psionics to gain strength. Lessons typically combined a physical component with a spiritual component related to the nature of their power. Another common exercise for a Chanera was to stand in one stance for hours or even days at a time, sometimes in harsh weather conditions or other physical strain, in hopes of allowing the spirit to flow through them in the process. As such, graduates of Chanera training were generally in good health due to their rigorous training and their developed psionic abilities. Upon completion of their training, many Chanera received a distinctive tattoo marking their nature.

Common Traits

By making their bodies the primary focus of their abilities, the Chanera were able to use physical exercise as a form of meditation. This aspect of Chanera training, differing from that of the knights in that the knights saw physical exercise and meditation as separate, allowed Chanera adherents to develop an otherwise negligible psionic power into a more significant source of strength. The Chanera distinguished themselves as among the best martial artists in the galaxy, using their psionic powers to strengthen their blows and refresh their fighting spirit while in combat.

The Chanera were also considered to be masters of their physical bodies, capable of physical feats such as sustained agility-based motions like tumbling, running, or leaping. As part of their own physical mastery Chanera were known for their self-awareness of their own bodies able to discern wounds, injuries, and sickness with ease. The Chanera learned to purge illness and poison from their bodies, and even become immune to them altogether. Fully-trained Chanera could often shrug off the effects of a normally-fatal effects from poisons. Trained Chanera could raise or lower their body temperature to survive in hot or cold environments, or even cause their skin to become so hot as to burn anything they touched. More experienced Chanera adepts could also give normally soft parts of their body unnatural rigidity to help them resist damage.

The signature weapon often used by the Chanera was a polearm called the harubado, which was tipped on one end with a short-singled edged blade. Each harubado was unique and bore patterns etched into the blade to symbolize things important to its creator. Most harubado could be broken down into easily-stored pieces, and trained users could whirl it around their bodies in combat, using themselves as a central axis of rotation. Due to their own physical control, Chanera were capable of wielding the blade with a speed that sometimes astonished onlookers, which was described as a virtual whirlwind of metal and blades. As such, they were considered excellent melee combatants. Chanera saw the weapon as an external focus for their powers, as well as a means of self-defense. The Chanera were agile to the point of being able to dodge or deflect a sizable portion of incoming strikes or shots aimed at them, and enjoyed increased balance and stamina due to their psionic powers. They were also known for their adaptability to any situation.

System Notes

This tradition may best be served by using the martial artist template from Dungeon fantasy, replacing primitive skills with more advanced ones where appropriate. It may be a good idea to look at the spacer template when updating skills. They also do well taking Psychometabolism Powers.

Chanera

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