The kalashtar are a race of psionic people in the Eberron campaign setting of the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game. They are descendants of a group of human monks from Adar who allowed themselves to be possessed by good-aligned Quori fleeing Dal Quor. Over time, the connection between the two has become inseparable. As the kalashtar greatly outnumber the good-aligned Quori, the spiritual essence of each Quori is divided out amongst many Kalashtar, known collectively as a lineage. Thus, the only way to completely destroy one of the good-aligned Quori is to exterminate its entire lineage. Many kalashtar follow the Path of Light.
History of the Kalashtar
The Kalashtar were created -1800 YK, almost 2800 years before the start of the Eberron campaign, when the rebel Quori Tarantai and her followers fled from the region of dreams, Dal Quor into the material plane. In their desperation to escape the Dreaming Dark Taratai found a passage out of Dal Quor and into the body of a meditating monk in the Sarlonan nation of Adar. The monk and sixty-six other volunteers from the monastery agreed to bond with and house the renegade Quori spirits within themselves, at the cost of earning the eternal enmity of the Dreaming Dark.
The Quori spirits were initially concerned about what would happen when their hosts died, but instead were surprised when they learned that when a child of the same gender was born of the host (mother or father) they shared the same bond with the child as they did with the host parent. As the families of the original hosts grew and expanded, the Quori found themselves spread thinner and thinner. The memories and basic personality of the benevolent quori spirit were imprinted upon the child and the Quori lived on through the eyes of a thousand descendants.
Kalashtar appear similar to humans in many regards, but are graceful and elegant in a way that is almost alien. They are slightly taller and their faces more angular than humans, but in a way that only further accents their natural beauty. Kalashtar tend to wear their hair long. Female kalashtar prefer loose clothing over more restricting garb; while male kalashtar may tend to abstain from shirts and the like.
Kalashtar Psionic Talent
All Kalashtar due to their dualistic human/Quori heritage possess basic innate psionic talents. From a young age Kalashtar learn how to create temporary telepathic connections with others and psionically focus their minds. Many within the Kalashtar community go further in their psionic training as psions, wilders, psychic warriors or soulknives. Wielding such potent psionic might comes naturally to the Kalashtar and they must be eternally vigilant for the spies and assassins of the Dreaming Dark.
Kalashtar Society and Culture
Quor Tarai: The Dream of the Age
The Kalashtar believe that at the center of Dal Quor lies the Quor Tarai, the vast image of an unseen and unbelievably powerful dreamer that permeates all things. The Quori are an aspect of the Quor Tarai and they change as the Quori Tarai does. The Kalashtar believe that they live in the third incarnation of the Quor Tarai and that the age is one of Darkness. Called il-Lashtavar by the Quori, the darkness that dreams is the third age that came into existence soon after the cataclysm that destroyed the Giants of Xen'Drik. According to the teachings of Tarantai the Quor Tarai slowly shifts and changes, eventually passing away. This death heralds the implosion and then explosion of Dal Quor as a new Quor Tarai is created. The Dreaming Dark will stop at nothing to prevent the turning of the age while the Kalashtar following the Path of Light attempt to push the cycle forward.
The Path of Light
The Kalashtar follow il-Yannah or The Path of Light and it reflects every aspect of their lives. Deeply spiritual and meditative, the Kalashtar work within the communities they live within, helping spread good and the light to every corner of the world. They intensely believe that by actively promoting and acting on the behalf of good, they will slowly move the cycle of Quor Tarai towards its conclusion and herald a new age of Light and Joy.
The Path of Shadows
Sheshan talarash dasyannah or as it is more commonly known, the Path of Shadows, is a martial art form in every sense of the term. Part exercise, meditation, combat training, and artistic expression, the Path of Shadows is a smooth, soft, graceful, and fluid art of hypnotic moves and sweeping motions. A Kalashtar focusing purely on the movement is said to be staying in the light while one who instead uses it to train for battle is facing the shadows.
- Decker, Jesse; Mathew Sernett, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, Keith Baker (April 2005). Races of Eberron. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast. p. 192. ISBN 0-7869-3658-4.
- Wilkes, Jennifer Clarke; Ari Marmell, C.A. Suleiman (September 2006). Faiths of Eberron. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast. p. 160. ISBN 0-7869-3934-6.