|All-Under-Heaven of the Heavenly Father, Heavenly King, and Great Peace
Taihei Tengoku in Maredoratica.
and largest city
|Government||De jure heterodox Christian theocracy, de facto directorial system|
|•||Heavenly King||Mikhael of Issus (de jure, de facto vacant)|
|•||Earthly Kings||North King
|•||Coronation of Yamato Emperor||385|
|•||Heavenly Realm||November 11th, 1859|
83,012 sq mi
|GDP (PPP)||2017 estimate|
|Currency||Taihei Tael (TTT)|
|Time zone||Yamato Standard Time|
|Drives on the||left|
The Heavenly Realm (太平天囯, Taihei Tengoku) is a state in southeastern Wilassia east of Ruccola. It is inhabited by 52.7 million people. Ethnic Yamato make up approximately 80% of the population, with large minorities of Yujin and Mazebito. Taihei Tengoku covers roughly 215,000 square kilometers along the coast of the Pearl Sea, including several outlying islands and part of the central Sirenes. Most of Taihei Tengoku is mountainous, with its population concentrated into several fertile lowlands and river valleys.
Taihei Tengoku is by law a God Worshipper theocracy, in theory ruled by Mikael of Corum, the Christian messiah. Earthly authority is exercised by the Secular Regency, an executive council of seven and the Final Court, established in the wake of the Heavenly Revolution of 1860. Taihei Tengoku, though isolated diplomatically in the past, is currently a member of the Group of Eight and the second-largest economy in Wilassia.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Politics
- 4 Economy
- 5 Demographics
- 6 Culture
- 7 See Also
Human habitation of the area extends back several dozen millenia. Colonists from the area spread out to settle the Caroline Islands and western Wilassia, and permanent settlements in the area have been dated to around 3000BC. Little archaelogical evidence remains from this period, but the time between 460 and 300 BC is generally considered to be a golden age in Taihei society as the era of the semi-mythical First Triple Alliance. Trade links gradually faded away with the Carolines around the mid-200s BC, and the Alliance fell to a series of crises and invasions. Most of the settlements were abandoned in the following century, with the exception of Nara, which existed in a much-reduced state. With the classical Yamato cities destroyed, former inhabitants of the trader city-states spread out into the countryside, displacing the forager tribes of the interior.
The newly agrarian society was governed by a shifting patchwork of warlords for the next millenium. Local kings would expand substantially on many occasions, only to collapse within the several generations. The kingdom of Daiwa, located in the foothills of the Ishikari Mountains, conquered the others and its king, Yamato, was coronated emperor in 385 AD. Unlike previous attempts at reunification, Emperor Yamato allowed defeated warlords a considerable degree of autonomy, curbing the rebellions that broke earlier kingdoms. Urban society was re-established along the coast and expanded inland, with the imperial capital of Yachiyo serving as the center of politics and culture. Stability was ensured by disarming most of the new nobility, with the remaining knights bound to the imperial retinue.
Medieval Yamato culture was marked by increasing influence from the east, from (RUCCOLAN PREDECESSOR STATE). Succeeding emperors viewed themselves as variously tributaries to the (RUCCOLAN PREDECESSOR STATE) and as emperors of equal stature, dividing the all under heaven by the Ishikari range. The Yamato emperors were undone in the late 13th century, after two Mongol invasions. Although the Mongols were fought to a standstill, the cost in lives and treasure forced the Yamato to surrender while the terms were favorable. A native military governor called a shogun ruled the remaining Yamato territory in exchange for providing troops to subdue rebellions and conduct expeditions on behalf of the Mongol dynasty in (RUCCOLA). Yamato society survived Mongol rule relatively intact, as the shoguns were selected from the leaders of the previously anti-Mongol armies. The military government provided order and stability to a devastated country, but were unable to effectively cope with the arrival of Alisnan powers. A period of national seclusion started in 1727 in response to the Morivaine Revolution was forcibly broken in 1799.
The 1800s ushered in a period of general unrest and several disasters in close succession. The opening of Nara to foreign trade ended the quarantine of foreigners to the Dejima district, and exposed the large and growing urban population of the city to liberal thought and Christianity. A series of famines and severe monsoon seasons strained the ability of the shogunate to effectively govern. The discovery of archaeological remains and historical evidence of the Triple Alliance sparked an interest in Yamato classicism. The republican virtues the Triple Alliance embodied in lore inspired liberal and republican secret societies, formed by many classicists. Chief among them were the Revive Enlightenment Society based in Nara with substantial foreign contacts, and the National Protection Alliance of military officers.
In this background a low-level local bureaucrat outside Nara, Kou Shuzen, converted to Christianity. A member of the lower aristocracy, Kou suffered a nervous breakdown after being stripped of a sinecure following a peasant revolt in 1841. He experienced a series of vivid and terrifying visions in which several figures spoke to him. They condemned the sins of the "demon worshiping" Yamato society and that two of them would return provided the world be cleared of demon worshipers. After receiving tracts from a Calvinist missionary, Kou came to the conclusion that the figures were God, Mikhael, Jeremiah, and Elijah tasking him to augur the Second Coming.
Local preaching and iconoclasm netted him a growing sect called the God Worshipping Society, with a sizable following within Nara itself. By 1855, it had between 10 and 30,000 followers. A local levy sent to arrest him in March 1856 was routed with heavy casualties and its commander killed. The God Worshippers were expelled from Nara shortly thereafter but several domains rose in rebellion shortly thereafter, along with the cities of Hoten and Takao. Liberal dissidents exiled from Nara, many of them Christians themselves, proclaimed the New Triple Alliance in December 1856 and pledged allegiance to the Taihei cause, and Shokai Sei, leader of the National Protection Alliance, pronounced Wing King. While able to defeat attempts by the bakufu to retake Hoten and Takao, the war turned into a bloody stalemate of sieges and counter-sieges between the shogunate and the rebels, with neither side able to defeat the other decisively in battle.
A turning point in the rebellion came after the battle of Ooarai in the summer of 1860. Alisnan expatriates, most notably the XXXer diplomat XXX YYY, were trapped in the spa town as the Wing King's New Model Army surrounded it. The humane treatment the New Model Army offered to the besieged convinced the diplomat of the Taihei cause. In a series of accounts sent to Alisnan newspapers, the diplomat appealed to Alisnan governments that the New Triple Alliance was fighting for liberty and Christianity, and provided a detailed account of the New Model Army's campaigns as they happened, the first war correspondence of the modern age. Alisnan support, first from clandestine private donors and then from governments, allowed the rebels to decisively defeat the shogunate army and seize Nara in November 1860, proclaiming a new government in the old imperial palace. After consolidating its forces, the new Taihei government destroyed the rest of the shogunate's forces and an opportunistic invasion from colonial powers in the Northern Expedition of 1861, establishing the present borders of the country.
Factionalism soon beset the new Taihei government. The God Worshippers, although numerous and forming the bulk of the army, had little theology beyond the holy war against the shogunate and the personal charisma of Kou Shuzen. Their secular reformists counterparts opposed each other as much as they stymied the God Worshippers, with liberals and nationalists fighting for control of the embryonic civil service and the officer corps. Furthermore, most of the country was not Christian, and many still reserved their loyalty to the samurai and the exiled shogun. Tensions almost led to a civil war in the May 25th incident, but the Wing King Shokai Sei, commanding the professional, elite core of the army, took power as Kou Shuzen abdicated and abolished his throne. Until his death in 1880, Shokai ruled the country under martial law. The Shokai regime began a program of internal repression against shogunate loyalists and the Shinto population, however, also curbed political violence, reestablished order, and began to industrialize the country.
Shokai's death in 1880 led to prompt action by the other four Earthly Kings to ensure that such tyranny would never happen again, beginning the Taihei Tetrarchy. Too concerned with administration to groom a successor, Shokai's weak successors were easily marginalized by the other kings. The regency marginalized the power of the Wing King and This tetrarchy would last for nearly ninety years, as Taihei Tengoku became an industrial state, the first in east Wilassia.
The Great War and the Maredoratic Trade War curtailed the growth of the Taihei economy. Its fragile industrial base depended on trade with the outside world, which declined due to pressures of the war. Nationalist pressures led to a war with Ruccola. Taihei Tengoku was defeated and the Tetrarchy collapsed in 1968.
Two-thirds of Taihei Tengoku's land area consist of forested hills and mountains. The country spans the coastal lowlands and western foothills of the Ishikari mountain range which forms the border with Ruccola. All Taihei river systems originate from the Ishikari range. The highest point in the country is Mt. Izumo, at 3,799m above sea level. It is also the northernmost, forming part of the terrestrial border.
The country is roughly divided by the capital city of Nara into the urban south and the sparsely populated north. Urban settlement forms a megalopolis from Nara to Takao, forming the Pearl Sea Belt, in which four of five Taiheis reside. The plains and fertile lowlands of the country facilitated high population densities in pre-modern Yamato and explosive industrialization and urbanization in the modern era. The sparsely populated north of the country contains most of the remaining arable land, consisting of the highlands of the northern Ishikari range and their drainage basins.
Taihei Tengoku has a humid temperate or subtropical climate throughout the country, although with some variations between north and south. Due to the effects of Pearl Sea currents, the climate in the south is wetter, revolving around the annual May-June monsoon rains moving north from the Carolines. The north is drier and colder, especially in the Ishikari highlands. The average temperature is around 7 °C in the winter and 26 °C in the summer.
Taihei Tengoku is de jure a theocracy under Mikhael of Corum, after the abdication of the first and only human Heavenly King, Kou Shuzen. In practice, the government is a directorial republic. It is loosely based on Pollonan and Prekovi models of federalism and subsidiarity.
The seven Earthly Kings (世俗王, Sezoku-Ō) govern the country as a collective head of state and head of government as outlined in the Basic Law. They are elected from the Final Court (最終館, Saishūkan), and serve until death or abdication. There are four "Area" or "Route Kings" (道王, Do-Ō): the North, South, East, and West Kings. The three others are the Wing King (翼王, Yoku-Ō), Martial King (武王, Mu-Ō), and the Peace King (平王, Hei-Ō). The Route Kings and the Wing King are elected from judges in the Final Court, while the Martial and Peace Kings are appointed from the military and civil service respectively.
The Final Court is a unicameral, 209-seat greater sanhedrin, with elections occuring every other year in three tranches. Judges of the Court are eligible for five of the seven seats of the Regency. It is dominated by the Rikken Aikokusha, a center-right market liberal/legal populist party, holding a supermajority of the seats of the Court. The Final Court functions as a legislature as well as a final appellate court.
The Taihei legal system operates according to the principles of God Worship in its application of Biblical law. In practice Taihei law functions similarly to common law or Islamic law in its use of legal precedent and reasoning. Twenty-three judge sanhedrins are the upper appellate courts for the commanderies, and a sanhedrin determines the contents of the Nara Talmud, the main text of God Worshipper law.
The country is divided into four metropoleis (都, to), sixteen commanderies (群, gun), and one free state (自由国, jiyu-koku): the Kazashimo Islands, representing the Taihei portion of the Sirenes. Metropoleis are urban, self-governing entities within Taihei Tengoku. Commanderies, although presided by elected governors, are dependent on the national government for financial and administrative needs. The free state of the Kazashimo Islands is an autonomous region with its own constitution, government, and gendarmerie. Under the tetrarchy, each Route King governed over certain commanderies and the Wing King governed the metropoleis, a system that was abolished in 1975 with the revision of the Basic Law.
|Metropolis (都, To)|
|Commandery (群, Gun)|
|Free State (自由国, Jiyu-Koku)|
Taihei Tengoku has observer status within the Maredoratic League. Its foreign policy objectives are expanding trade and promoting Taihei culture worldwide. Historically, Taihei Tengoku has been friendly with Pollona due to its aid in the Heavenly Revolution and Some Other Countries. The Taihei government is overtly anti-Communist, despite strong trade links with Communist countries.
Taihei Tengoku hosts the headquarters of several large non-governmental organizations due to its neutrality since the Great Maredoratic War and its sponsorship. The Maredoratic Red Cross is headquartered in the city of Nara. The Wilassian headquarters of the Salvation Army was located in Yachiyo from 1970 to 2002, when it became the global headquarters as the organization departed Questers.
The Heavenly Realm fields a military of approximately 384,000 active troops on a budget comprising 3% of the national economy and a fifth of government expenditures. The National Protection Army is the unified armed force of Taihei Tengoku, divided into service branches referred to as the Combined Armies and the Combined Fleet. The Armies field ground units (including a contingent of marines) and the air force, while the Fleet operates a fleet of warships, naval aviation, and a coast guard. Taihei Tengoku practices universal conscription and can call nearly three million men from its reserve rolls, and a complex of state-sponsored arms manufacturers supply the Army with technically advanced weapons systems.
The Taihei economy is a developed, high-income, industrial market economy. It is heavily dependent on foreign trade and investment, and likewise has extensive investments of its own abroad. The reforms of the late 20th century softened the often adversarial relations Taihei Tengoku had with the rest of the world and spurred rapid economic growth. The economy of Taihei Tengoku is considered highly laissez-faire by Maredoratican standards. The state role in the economy, once an extensive network of state-owned and parastatal entities, retreated to 15% of GDP from a record high of 67% under the tenure of Wing King Rikan Yū from 1972 to 1995.
The economy is driven by densely populated, highly productive urban areas like Nara and Takao, although the entire area between those two cities is considered one continuous megalopolis in the Pearl Sea Belt (真珠海ベルト, Shinjukai Beruto). Formally recognized metropoleis give the largest Taihei cities significant internal latitude and internal economic freedom. The free ports of Nara and Takao together handled nearly 25 million TEUs, supplying not only the Taihei goods trade but also much of terrestrial Southeast Wilassia through extensive road and rail links. Transshipment is another major activity of the ports, serving as a stopover point in the busy Alqosian-Alisnan marine trade route.
Taihei Tengoku, unlike most countries, does not possess a central bank, having been dissolved in 1969. Private banks issue the national currency, the tael. The private Bank of Nara, despite its name, acts as a clearinghouse and lender of last resort for the Taihei financial system. Taihei Tengoku is a net creditor and holds a diversified portfolio of foreign assets, including public debt. Taihei Tengoku possesses $701 billion in foreign exchange reserves. Its low tax rates, both on individual and corporate income, make it a popular tax haven for the wealthy, and make it the easiest country to do business in in Maredoratica. There is no minimum wage in Taihei Tengoku, although most manufacturing concerns have a negotiated wage floor.
Race and ethnicity
The Taihei population consists of approximately 52.2 million people. Taihei Tengoku is ethnically heterogenous, with ethnic Yamato comprising about 80% of the population. The largest ethnic minority is the Yujin, followed by Mazebito, the creole hill people of the Ishikari range. The population is highly urbanized, with over nine-tenths of the population living in urban areas.
The Yamato are a distinct ethnic group whose origins are a subject of debate. Until the late 20th century Yamato were considered indigenous to the area since the early Neolithic, however, DNA sequencing in the 1990s has given rise to a more recent origin of the Yamato from the Transvrabic steppe. The Yujin and Taihei Mazebito emerged relatively recently, in the 16th to 18th centuries. Yujin are a Yamato-speaking group descended from Sericanese refugees from Alisnan colonization and escaped Yamato serfs. Semi-nomadic Yujin hosts were allowed to settle the sparsely populated north of the country in exchange for military service starting in the 16th century. The Mazebito refer to the groups of hill peoples inhabiting the Ishikari, with varying Wilassian and Alisnan descent. The Taihei government classifies ethnicity as "Yamato," "Other Wilassian," and "Non-Wilassian" in censuses.
Taihei Tengoku is officially a God Worshipper theocracy; Christianity is the state religion of the country and until 1952 church attendance was mandatory and absenteeism a misdemeanor offense. The Taihei state, through the Final and Talmudic Courts, considers itself the final representative of Biblical law on Earth and controls the contents of the Taihei Talmuds, a main theological text for God Worshipper religious law. However, religious toleration is enshrined in the government through articles 6 and 7 of the Basic Law.
God Worship is followed by approximately 65% of the population. Other Protestant denominations, Catholics, and non-Christian religions (almost entirely Shinto) are adhered to by about a tenth of the population each. Three percent of the population adhere to other Christian sects, such as Prekovi Orthodoxy and non-Chalcedonian sects such as Gallan Arianism or Oriental Orthodoxy. The remaining 1.5%, slightly over 750,000 people, profess no religion at all.
The Yamato populace has historically possessed high levels of literacy; Taihei Tengoku currently has an adult literacy rate in excess of 99%. The Taihei educational system is marked by great decentralization, with the primary providers of education being religious groups and businesses. The only government intervention in the curriculum is the NPASE standardized test administered near the end of secondary school, used to measure mental aptitude for the military and in university admissions. The state maintains schools and libraries in sparsely populated regions in the mountains, which are nonexistent in densely populated coastal areas.
Yamato culture is a highly distinctive culture developed over millenia. The Taihei government systematically promotes the development, curation, and protection of its tangible and intangible cultural artifacts through the Ministry of Culture.
Historically, Taihei culture has been influenced by that of the neighboring (RUCCOLAN PREDECESSOR STATE). Alisnan expansion and colonization of neighboring Wilassian countries led to both official national isolation and creeping Western influence through covert missionary activity and trade.
Traditional Yamato architecture is typified by the use of wood buildings raised slightly off the ground on stone pedestals or stilts covered with thatch or tile. The dominant structure of a traditional Yamato building is the large, angular roof. Sliding doors or screens are often used in place of walls. Yamato architecture makes liberal use of wood and wood products in its architecture, using less stone than its parent Ruco-Mongol Imperial style. Although Yamato buildings are often built to last only several decades before needing to be torn down and rebuilt, the most famous buildings are centuries if not over a millenia old.
With the arrival of Alisnan powers in Yamato and industrialization, newer Taihei buildings reflect contemporary trends in Alisna. Neo-Baroque architecture was in vogue from the late 19th to the early 20th centuries, before being replaced by modernist and post-modernist buildings through the later decades of the 20th century.
Taihei cuisine is based on combining a staple food (usually rice) with plates of meat, vegetables, or other condiments. Rice and fish are the most common foods in Yamato dishes, as most of Taihei Tengoku lives near the coast. Red meats were introduced by (RUCCOLAN) emigrants in the 1500s, and other foods were introduced in the 19th century after the end of national isolation. Yamato cuisine places a heavy emphasis on presentation, quality, and seasonality, while Yujin cuisine is marked by a focus on spicy or savory tastes and large portions of hearty foods.