In the BIONICLE storyline, beliefs are often present amongst different species. These beliefs are often guidelines used to create harmony amongst the species.
The Matoran revere the Great Spirit Mata Nui, who brought them into being and gave them the task of maintaining his health through labor. Most of the beliefs of the Matoran revolve around Mata Nui. In particular, Mata Nui was said to have handed down the Three Virtues of Unity, Duty and Destiny. Matoran, Toa, and Turaga alike strive to live by these values. In turn, the Matoran of Metru Nui developed Principles, derived from the Three Virtues, to get through the hardships of the Dark Time.
The Great Takara is a dance and chant led by the Turaga of a Matoran village, and used as a form of praise to the Great Spirit. The Turaga of Mata Nui were said to be the Takara-Leaders of their respective Koro. During the Great Takara the right and left hands of the Turaga would perform at the respective sides of the leaders of their village. The Matoran regarded this performance as an important event. Sometimes, four Matoran would lead their own variant of the Great Takara, in which a Turaga was unneeded.[MNOG]
At some point in a Vortixx's life, they would pair with another and climb "The Mountain." If they return alive, they are given better working conditions. However, Vortixx who climb up with a partner and return alone are given a special status, as they have proven they have what it takes to survive in the world.
Many different types of mythology exist. These include myths, misconceptions and unexplained mysteries.
The Iron Tribe of Spherus Magna held the Skopio creature in high regard. When a plague decimated this tribe, other tribes believed it was punishment for their reverence of this atrocious creature. Agori mythology told of a magical gateway called Spirit's Wish which grants the dearest wish of those who pass through it. Most Agori are not aware that the gateway actually exists in the form of a mind-scanning Teleportation device near the River Dormus, although the Agori Tarduk, Kirbold, and Crotesius discovered its secret during an expedition to northern Bara Magna. Upon their return, however, the tales of their adventure were met with skepticism.
The Sisters of the Skrall have a legend of a female Skrall who encountered the Great Being Angonce, and was taught how to achieve power even beyond the natural Psionic powers of her race. This Skrall was said to have reneged contact with the other Skrall, and in some versions of the legend she now could bring about the rise and fall of civilizations. The Sisters of the Skrall believe that Angonce could teach them similar power if they were to find him.
Matoran everywhere believe in the existence of Great Beings, powerful creatures known to have created the universe and several of its inhabitants.
The Turaga of Mata Nui told the Matoran a legend pertaining to the formative events of the universe. The legend was later revealed to be fiction, designed by the Turaga to conceal the existence of Metru Nui, as the Matoran had forgotten about it due to the Matoran Spheres.
Matoran mythology also tells of two powerful beings, Artakha and Karzahni, who governed two lands where Matoran would be sent based on their work ethic. If a Matoran toiled hard and long enough, he or she would be afforded the privilege of entering the realm of Artakha. If a Matoran exhibited laziness, he or she would be punished by being sent to Karzahni. Although nearly all Matoran are familiar with this mythology, very few are aware that it is based on actual beings and locations of the Matoran Universe.
Leaders of the Skakdi race on Zakaz are known to tell stories of a horrific being named Irnakk. In a way similar to how Turaga tell stories of the Toa to encourage Matoran, Skakdi leaders tell these stories to keep their race in line through fear.
Makuta legend said that when one Makuta died, everything they had put into the universe (pain, misery, suffering, etc.) came back to them.[BL11]
In many societies, sports are used to promote harmony and fair competition amongst the members of the species.
Matoran everywhere have developed their own forms of recreation, primarily sports. The sports differ by area, as locales may be suited to one type of sport or another.
- Kolhii: Most popular sport on Mata Nui.
- Great Ussal Race: Race involving Ussal Crabs.
- Ignalu: Lava Surfing Competition in Ta-Koro.
- Kewa Bird Riding: Sport in Le-Koro; involves riding Kewa.
- Huai Snowball Sling: Game in Ko-Koro where participants sling snowballs at each other.
- Ngalawa Boat Racing: Boat race held in the waters of Ga-Koro.
- Akilini: Most popular sport in Metru Nui.
- Disk Surfing: Race involving Kanoka.
- Kanoka Toss: Dangerous sport involving tossing Kanoka disks.
- Pin the Tail on the Ash Bear: A game commonly played at Naming Day ceremonies. Prior to Makuta's impersonation of Turaga Dume, Metru Nui was a trading port, so customs got carried along with the goods, leading to this game being brought to Metru Nui.
Following the Shattering, which destroyed Spherus Magna and created the new desert planet of Bara Magna, members of the warrior class developed a new system to settle disputes and avoid war. The Glatorian class was created to fight in these Arena Matches in order to claim resources and protect the various tribes. After the Agori united, Arena Matches were discontinued.
Every year, Glatorian traveled to the Arena Magna in the free city of Atero to participate in a tournament to be named the champion of all Glatorian. At the most recent Tournament, the city was attacked by an invading army of Skrall warriors, and this ended the tradition permanently.
Contests such as gladiator fights constantly occur on Stelt. Each opponent attempts to battle the other opponent, which may be a local fighter or fighter from a distant land, to the death.
Occupations are present and essential in many of the societies.
The occupations held by the Matoran were part of the process of maintaining the health of the Great Spirit Mata Nui. When Matoran stopped their work, especially in Metru Nui, it imperiled the health of the Great Spirit.
Occupations on Bara Magna were not fixed, and could be performed by any Agori capable of doing so. The Glatorian mostly fought in the arena, but were paid to be guards and escorts.
Murder in an Arena Match
During a battle, if one partaker was to kill another after he had given up, the attacker would be banished to the Wastelands. The punishment was also extended in one instance to a Glatorian who attacked his opponent after forfeiting the match.
During the Matoran's time on Metru Nui, a Matoran Underworld was established. Though hindered by the presence of the Vahki, many crime rings were still present on Metru Nui prior to the Great Cataclysm, and were a serious threat to the security of the city. Most Matoran know better than to commit crimes, as it may interfere with their own duty and endanger the health of Mata Nui, but some still insist on devoting themselves to criminal activities.
Rare artifacts attract the most unscrupulous Matoran, who insist on passing through illegal channels to gain maximum profit for it. Before the Sea Gates were closed, several businesses extended to other lands, but after the shutting of the gates, the rings were forced to keep their efforts concentrated to Metru Nui. Though crafty, the rings were effectively dealt with by the Vahki. Bordakh were the most effective in breaking these rings, as they used their staffs to stun Matoran into giving away the others.
Though once a minor crime, the extensiveness of the Chute system enabled more Matoran in Metru Nui to steal things by diverting shipments to unused chutes to be looted by them later. Chute Station Attendants monitored all shipments, but due to the thousands of shipments day in and day out, it was impossible to keep track of everything. Matoran from other places will occasionally commit petty theft as well, lacking the advancement of Metru Nui to pull off large heists.
Matoran on Metru Nui rarely got into physical altercations, but a strong feud could end in a disk duel, where opponents stood at opposite ends and slung disks at each other. This can have serious consequences; one Matoran was shrunk so much that he was never found, while another was turned into something so grotesque that he almost wound up on display in the Archives. This activity is highly illegal.
A rare crime, but one with dangerous repercussions. Often on Metru Nui, forged Kanoka disks would be created, and therefore lacked powers, leaving a Matoran helpless to a Rahi or other such danger.
In any society, there would be individuals with vast reserves of creativity. Sometimes, these individuals put their skills into action and invent new or improved ways of living.
Like all societies, transportation is necessary to keep a society running. Over the duration of history, many types of vehicles were designed, invented and created.
Military groups are necessary to protect a society from danger. Various defense groups are established in different societies to maintain the safety of the people.
On Spherus Magna, the day was broken up into 36 hour periods, that would repeat themselves for the afternoon and night hours after 18 hours.
In the Matoran Universe, the day was broken up into 36 hour periods, that would repeat themselves for the afternoon and night hours after 18 hours.
After the defeat of the Bohrok-Kal, the Matoran on Mata Nui used a special currency type called Widgets. These Widgets are made up of different sized shapes and objects, like gears, but are carved from Protodermis. The currency is based on the forms they used on Metru Nui. Widgets were only adopted after the defeat of the Bohrok-Kal; prior to then, the Matoran had used a simple barter system. Widgets are used by Matoran throughout the universe.
Matoran and other species use a distinct measuring system. The system is split into three different types: bio, kio, and mio.
The exact conversion rates (with real world measurements) are:
- 1 bio = 4.5 feet = 1.37 meters[BEU, p. 13]
- 1 kio = 1,000 bio = 4,500 feet/0.85 miles = 1.37 kilometers[BEU, p. 58]
- 1 mio = 1,000 kio = 850 miles = 1,370 kilometers[BEU, p. 93]
As a reference, all Toa are roughly 1.6 bio tall.[BEU, p. 13]
Communication is essential for one sapient race or being to communicate with another. To do so, it usually involves languages or different signals.
Several languages are known to exist in many areas of the galactic universe, originating in the Spherus Magna system and the Matoran Universe. Languages can also be used in written form, however the form can change from region to region.
Known languages include:
- Spherus Magna
- Matoran Universe
Many factions, military or otherwise, and individual characters employ visual symbols or insignias to represent them. Often, these symbols are totemic in nature, representing a tribal affiliation. Others are used for recognition and as warnings to others.
- Chat with Greg Farshtey, 10. August 2014
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