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This article is about a rite of passage called Iknimaya. You may be looking for the Iknimaya region of the Hallelujah Mountains.

Iknimaya is a treacherous but fundamental rite of passage in which a young Na'vi must select, capture, and successfully bond with one of the ikran who nest in the Hallelujah Mountains.


01.09.37 Jake snarls

3D Version: red/cyancross-eyedJake hissing at an ikran during Iknimaya

To connect the queue between the rider and the animal and to create the bond, an ikran must first be selected. The one performing the Iknimaya knows that the animal is the right one if it attacks and tries to kill the aspirant. A banshee catcher is snapped around the snout of the ikran, restraining the jaw and covering the eyes, making the animal unable to attack any further. The young Na'vi may then leap onto its back and connect queues. In this moment, sealed by the subsequent first flight, a lifelong bond is established that allows the Na'vi and banshee to ride through the sky with elegant, seemingly effortless coordination.


  • The process of choosing is one of the heart on the part of the Na'vi, and one of trying to kill the Na'vi on the part of the banshee.
  • The name 'Iknimaya' is also used to describe the literal path by which the Na'vi ascend to the ikran rookery, and in a broader context, that entire region of the Hallelujah Mountains. In Avatar: The Game, the path to the rookery is named Ayawa Ikran.
  • Note that an incorrect toss of a banshee catcher can lead to injury or death at the hands of an angered ikran.
  • Jake Sully successfully completes Iknimaya in Avatar.
  • Each of the prospective Na'vi warriors seen in the film are attempting Iknimaya have a yellow 'V' shape painted on their foreheads, likely indicating their current status.



James Cameron's Avatar: An Activist Survival Guide - pg 143

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