A Guide to Dankasha, Part 2: The Practice of Heda and Hedamism
Hedam is a widespread practice of worship in Dankasha. Although not mandated by the church, it is encouraged and is a cultural expectation. To perform Hedam, one uses their Danka. The practice is to inflict wounds upon the body, most commonly the back of one's hand, whilst giving prayer to the king. It is often expected that the practitioner allows the blood exiting the wound to freely flow, and to embrace to burning sensation as it is cooled by the soothing blood.
The ultimate desire for most Dankasha followers is to become closer, spiritually, to their king. They believe through Hedam, their will is received by the king. Every night, in their prayers, Myralians practicing Hedam give praise and worship to their king. They also wish for fair prices in the market, prosperity in the farms, and wealth for their towns. Some may wish for a child, or the lack thereof. Others may wish for more greedy matters. However, all is acceptable through the practice of Hedam.
The Reformation of Dankasha through Hedamism
There have been some movements through the practice of Hedam in which some groups of people have reformed from Dankasha toward Hedamism. Hedamism has a minor following, more prominent in smaller towns. Augustus Hedamism is the most common of the reformed branch, in which practitioners do not go to mass at their local Dankasha church, rather they meet around a community table, often circular, every morning and every evening to practice Heda. Lesser practiced forms of Hedamism include Charles Hedamism, in which they attend mass, but practice Heda in the morning only. The philosophy is that is it more effective to begin the day suffering, rather to suffer before bed. Another practice is Luis Hedamism, or Anti-Hedamism, in which practitioners attend mass but do not practice Heda, as they believe Heda creates too much suffering and is damaging to the soul. There is a cultural stigma against Luis Hedamism practitioners, where most believe they will be damned to eternal suffering, as they are weak minded and unwilling to suffer whilst living.
Heda for the typical practitioner of Dankasha is an important part of daily life for the majority of Myralians.