Zi Ha

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Zi Ha
Flag of Zi Ha.

Secular autocracy appointed by ruling theocrats
Zi Ha
Source: Dragon Empires Gazetteer, pg(s). 45 (1E)
Tian Xia World Guide, pg(s). 268–275 (2E)

The Tian Xia nation of Zi Ha is located in the Kelsang Mountains1 in the northern reaches of that continent. The ancestral home of the samsaran people, it is a land not only of contemplative temples but also terrible savagery, as not all peaks are held by the reincarnating humanoids.2


The nation of Zi Ha is contained entirely within the borders of the Kelsang Mountains but it does not fully control all the peaks of the chain. Those mountains that are controlled by the samsarans are known as the Enlightened Peaks and include the capital of Sangpo-Jong, as well as the other cities of Babschu-Jong, Byangshar-Jong, and Dogul-Jong. These cities are normally located high up on the peaks and are characterised by their graceful yet squat stone architecture, normally built into the leeward side of the mountain.

The cities (known as Jong, a Samsaran word for safety, shelter and settlement) are connected by a network of roads that make travelling the mountains much easier. Beyond this, what are termed the Savage Peaks are those controlled by the mountains' bloodthirsty inhabitants, ranging from tribes of savage giants to outcast hobgoblin clans from neighbouring Kaoling to bands of murderous cannibals. Finally, the Wild Peaks are those claimed only by monsters or wildlife. Beyond these dangers, these peaks teem with untapped natural resources: rare herbs, gemstones, and incredible mineral wealth.2


The government of Zi Ha consists of a secular autocracy where the nation's leader is chosen by the ruling theocrats of the kingdom. The current ruler is Gyaltho Tulku, a devoted cleric of Tsukiyo. While Zi Ha's cities are prosperous bastions of culture, much of the rest of the country is effectively wilderness, with the authority of Zi Ha's samsaran rulers only reaching the mountains known as the Enlightened Peaks. Zi Ha has always maintained its independence, even during the time of Imperial Lung Wa due to its isolation.2


The primary inhabitants of the kingdom of Zi Ha are samsarans, a race of humanoids with a unique relationship with reincarnation: not only do they usually reincarnate as new samsaran upon death but they are able to remember portions of their former lives. Samsarans however do not give birth to samsaran children but, instead, have human children.3 These human children are not allowed to remain in Zi Ha and are normally either escorted to the neighbouring kingdom of Linvarre or passed over to one of the many trusted trade caravans that link Zi Ha with more distant kingdoms.2

Unbeknownst to almost all the other inhabitants of Zi Ha, the alien race of yithians secretly has a network of agents across the country. Creatures from beyond the Dark Tapestry, the yithians are obsessed with understanding the process of reincarnation that the samsarans have mastered.4


The samsarans worship a variety of gods including; Pharasma, the mother of souls; Qi Zhong, the master of medicine; Shelyn, the Lady of Chrysanthemums; Shizuru, the Empress of Heaven; Tsukiyo, Prince of the Moon; and Yamatsumi, the Mountain Lord. It is unknown what deities, if any, the less enlightened, more bestial inhabitants of Zi Ha worship.2


For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. Paizo referred to the Kelsang Mountains as the Zi Ha Mountains prior to the publication of the Tian Xia World Guide.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 James Jacobs, et al. “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 45. Paizo Inc., 2011
  3. James Jacobs, et al. “Races of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 11. Paizo Inc., 2011
  4. Paris Crenshaw. “Ecology of the Yithian” in The Whisper Out of Time, 72. Paizo Inc., 2016