[!] A new book could be found in the Eternal Library. Several other copies were made and may have found their way abroad.
Discourses on unity among the Races, and other
such matters Political and Scientific
By Eredael Rhenaer
Ever a people of reserved disposition inclined more to censure than to acceptance, the Mali’aheral live separate, and what many of our companions would claim above, from the other races of the world. My own observations, and perhaps the will of nature implanted in my mind, have compelled me to create this treatise. I am but an oem’ii, and certain that my youth may predispose me to unwise ideas. Many of my fellow Mali’aheral may offer a stronger and truer argument, for they are older and wiser than me. Ever still, I hope he who reads this will take it in with a friendly temperament, and may find inspiration in its argument.
The Silver State, great Haelun’or itself, and the purity of its Mali’thill are always held in high reverence. Equal only in reverence to this pursuit of purity and superiority is that of the pursuit of knowledge and the arts. Such begets the dual philosophy of Maehr’sae Hiylun’ehya. The beauty of our people and our cities, and the unmatched scale of accumulated knowledge in the Eternal Library, are material testaments of the adheration to said philosophy. Yet, when faced with the reverence of the Maehr’sae and our peoples’ exclusion of supposed lesser races, I cannot help but grieve at the presence of an apparent inconsistency. None deny the intelligence and accomplishments of we Mali’aheral, but can we so readily dismiss the intelligence and accomplishments of the other races? Even more pressing, as we self-sufficiently make advancements upon the research of our ancestors by bringing in fresh perspectives, should we not place value on the possible perspectives offered by the other races, which could exponentially increase our understandings within the sciences? We carry their works in our library, yet with rare exception exclude them from entering it, nor commune with them to discuss philosophy or physics. What knowledge have we left unobtained, left to pass with the deaths of the old wise masters of history ignored not due to any lack of intellect but purely on the basis of their race? How can we be meritocratic amongst ourselves, yet not openly extend that meritocracy to visitors from beyond our walls?
We Mali’aheral, blessed elves in the common tongue, are also cursed. Cursed not with our infertility, but with a pervasive apathy to the ongoings of the world outside our walls. The superiority of empires and kingdoms past and present has long been associated with the extent of its governed territories and its power projected through military might. We Mali’aheral, and indeed our elven cousins in general, oft judge our own superiority by the sum of our knowledge and the aged pedigree of those that came before us. I do not suggest that we act as a Valah empire and expand our territory through war, but I do question why, if we are as superior as we claim, we do not project ourselves more firmly to other countries? So often they are embroiled in wars, be they for religion or politics, or for greed itself. Haelun’or and the Mali’aheral consider themselves above such wars, yet we too engage in them to protect our political position, evidenced in our role in the War of Two Emperors some decades ago. Then why do we not extend the peace we enjoy within our walls to those who have none outside, when we have contributed to such chaos? If we are as superior as we claim, should we not take a guiding role to the other races, opening our doors to them? And they too may bring us fresh perspectives and progress in the sciences, so that if we are to truly follow Maehr’sae their presence in our country becomes a necessity. We have the capability to advance not only ourselves, but advance all peoples of the world.
CHAPTER I: on the supposed empirical claims of Mali’thill superiority
All who have laid eyes on the cities of Haelun’or from antiquity to present will marvel at their consistent excellence. As Mali’thill make a habit of claiming, this excellence extends to ourselves as a race, that we are consistently more intelligent, more masterful of the arts, and more beautiful than the other races. Empiricism, academic observation, is at the heart of the Maehr’sae philosophy, and thus scientific studies are more prolific in number than any other within the Eternal Library. Such studies even extend to prove this Mali’thill superiority.
The oldest of these, and the most referenced, is the research of Illithor Qinyarus, surviving in the modern Library through the relations of Fineen Elsinfhar in her work Pureblood Study. In 1364, they found Mali’aheral blood to be more receptive to mana and other magical influences, thus proving the magical affinity of elves to be genetic. Their research continued into a broader scale, discovering so-called ‘manogelical receptors’ of higher potency in Mali’aheral blood, which allegedly allows us to better connect to the world around us. Qinyarus argued that these receptors were what gave elves higher intellect, and intended to prove it with a case study in comparison to impure Mali’aheral. The impure elves underperformed, with the Mali’thill significantly out scoring them in exams on arithmetics, history, and general mental acuity. While the results illustrate the superiority of Mali’thill, one must question the factors aside from impure blood, or lack of manogelical receptors, which may lead to the underperformance of the Mali’ata.
Elsinfhar herself describes the Mali’ata as being pulled from their ‘disgusting’ homes and brought into the city for the research. Does this not raise questions in the reliability of the examinations? They imply a correlation between lack of manogelical receptors and lack of intelligence as causational in nature. Observations in the city of Lareh’thilln will prove the sharper mental acuity of those that frequent the Eternal Library and College over their fellow Mali’aheral who are idle in such pursuits. In this regard intelligence is established as being as much environmental as it is hereditary. Therefore, it becomes only natural that that the Mali’ata, impure elves, relegated to live outside the city in poverty, unable to reap the benefits of knowledge which is so safeguarded from the impure in the Library, will score lower than Mali’thill who have been exposed to the Library’s works from near birth. It would be preemptive and inaccurate to claim that Mali’ata are less intelligent without controlling for outside educational factors, and providing equal opportunity to excel for both pure and impure.
CHAPTER II: on the Scientific merit of other races
Such are the accomplishments of the Mali’thill, and the racial pride reinforced by incomplete studies, that lends us to believe that we are the only race of merit, that the ingenuity of other countries and peoples are lesser. On this belief many of us have become incredulous, believing that any such achievements of a different race are an anomaly rather than a normality. The argument I have questioned above gives credit to the notion that the Mali’aheral academics of the past shaped their answers and works on the subject to suit the interests of pureblood pride and the conservative old regimes. This is a deeply concerning truth, as it corrupts the nature of Maehr’sae, which is to pursue logical advancement grounded in facts, reality, and science. Thus, to observe the importance of other races to the pursuit of Maehr’sae, it becomes necessary to examine the scientific merits of said races. For the sake of analysis I will divide examples of their merits into matters theoretical and matters material.
To find the latter one needs not venture far from Lareh’thilln; the Valah city of Helena, capital of the Empire, lies only several leagues to the south. Any Mali’thill who visits Helena cannot readily claim the Valah a primitive race. Though vastly foreign in architecture, the city is over twice the size of elcihi’thilln and has all the amenities of a modern Mali city. Perhaps the greatest testament to its modernization is its great steam-powered factories, from which Oren derives its military might. Certainly in industrial capacity, a material science, the Empire outperforms Haelun’or. Of course the Valah industrialization stems from both their fondness for war and their large and short-lived population over any intrinsic betterness, which explains why we, the long-lived and isolationist Mali’thill, do not adopt a similar industry despite our capability to do so. Nevertheless, the industry of that race is still worthy of consideration, and is material evidence against the notion of the primitivity of other races.
With regards to theory, or more generally, intangible scientific knowledge, the other races once more lend themselves capable. For the purpose of discussion and brevity I will use the reference of Serana Theodocci, a Valah of the Farfolk variety, who made considerable advancements in the field of neurology. In her work Nerve Irritation she uncovers the importance of the brain in bodily function in comparison to the heart via testing on frogs. She discovered that it is the brain which sends nerves to control muscles and not the heart, which was the prevailing thought at the time. This piece was instrumental in shaping how we understand the science behind thought. In her later work Ersatz Sentience she posits a new theory, by which one could transplant the brain of a sentient--from a Mali, Valah, or other--into another animal of similar structure, and argues that said brain would keep its original personality and memories. While this theory may likely never be proven, restricted by the morality of risking a sentient being’s brain, it does illustrate the Valah capacity for deeper thought, the Valah capacity to pursue Maehr’sae.
There are many more works of science published by the other races, such as On Dragons by Sam King, Great Encyclopedia of Birds by Siegfried, Gathering Herbs by Katherine Fisher, The Elder Mammoth by Horren Treebeard, Bronzesmithing: Volumes 1-5 by Quavinir Twiceborn, and A Study of Medicine by The Scribe, to name but a few. It is clear that in both a literary and physical capacity the other races are also of scientific merit. Although the Mali’aheral still produce far more scientific work, it is not as though the Valah or Bortu are incapable of reading. As the supposed superior race should it not then be our duty to educate these races, so that in time we too may learn from their own unique thoughts and perspectives? Imagine what scientific greatness could be achieved if the merits of the Mali’aheral were combined with the merits of the other races.
CHAPTER III: on the Political solution
As the misguided foundation of intrinsic Mali’thill superiority, or at least, the vast inferiority of the other races, along with scientific merit of said races having been established, a solution is called for. The overthrow of the Diarchy has seen the Republic restored and Haelun’or put to rights, and the liberalism that was so readily feared approaches common practice. It holds, therefore, that any political remedy must be one favored by the people, and one put into practice by the people’s representatives--Elhieal’thilln. The solution I will offer is then not expected to be legally ratified in any immediate fashion, and is instead to serve as inspiration for any such legal decisions forthcoming.
Given the length of Mali’thill lifespans, and indeed those of our broader Mali cousins, being exceptional when compared to the Valah, our nearest neighbors, and other races of that like, it stands impossible for those individuals to hold any meaningful political position in Haelun’or. While the Bortu are similarly long-lived to Mali, they would be incompatible with Haelun’or’ian governance for other cultural reasons, and for the purpose of discussion I will focus on the Valah. They mature and grow old in the same timeframe of Mali youth and, as a result, their decisions are short-sighted. There are a myriad of other effects of those with shorter lifespans: they generally overindulge in their own emotions, and, perhaps as a result of their greater fertility, appear more susceptible to pleasures of the flesh. In regards to science it stands obvious they have less time to establish mastery, and are undoubtedly restricted in the range of subjects they can undertake. However, this does lend a unique advantage: as no two beings think in the same manner, by quickly going through generations humans are able to place more perspectives on a scientific problem in the same timeframe than a singular Mali’thill studying the same problem over part of their life. The merits aforementioned do certainly corroborate this notion. Thus, while their short lifespans and personalities should mean they can never hold any political office in Haelun’or, they should be welcomed educationally.
I posit that a new Academic District be zoned within the city, separate from the typical residences of the Mali’thill. Within this district, scholars from across Arcas would be readily welcomed into Lareh’thilln, provided they are proved to be of no political, social, or legal risk. While they will have the benefits of Library and College access, as well as any typical mercantile amenities found within elcihi, they will have no citizenship rights. Moreover, any properties allotted for migrant scholars should not be titled in their names, and instead should only be rented for the duration of their academic tenure. If such foreign scholars prove to be distracting for Mali’thill students, I see two apparent solutions. Either such individuals are reprimanded for their distractions, or the College is restructured in so far that it facilitates separate lectures for those of another race. Any destruction of Library property, be it physical damage to the building or theft of literature within, should be harshly punished, with heavy fines and exile from Lareh’thilln, and perhaps, depending on the severity of the damages, a prison sentence. Such individuals would be foreigners allowed access to Haelun’or’s educational treasures by the State’s good graces, and thus any other damages that individual might cause not aforementioned should similarly be punished harshly.
There are a multitude of other benefits of opening the academic centres of Elcihi’thilln to the other races extending beyond the pursuit of Maehr’sae. Firstly, that of economics. Although we are sustainable on our own, the introduction of foreigners, particularly those with coin able to pay for their right to study, will bring more business to the markets of elcihi, which will yield monetary gain to shopkeepers and the broader Mali’thill populace. The second benefit is that prolonged contact with a variety of foreigners will allow us to better understand their thoughts, which will then lend the ability for Haelun’or to better construct its political positions abroad. This is of great importance if we are to break our isolationism and exert ourselves more freely outside our immediate borders.
It is clear that the Republic must cast aside its secluded superiority, welcoming foreign races into elcihi for academic matters. As preceding, this will positively affect Haelun’or’s economy, political reputation, and most crucially the pursuit of the sciences. By opening our gates we place our country on a new course, one of prosperity, one of virtue, and one in line with the true nature of our most ancient philosophy: Maehr’sae Hiylun’ehya.