The Sodan were a tribe of Jaffa who broke away from their Goa'uld master, Ishkur, 5,000 years ago and sought enlightenment by praying to the Ancients, who they believed were true gods. Eventually they were converted to Origin by a Prior, but later rejected the Ori. In retaliation, the Ori had a Prior infect one of the Sodan to slaughter the population.
Five thousand years ago, the ancestors of the current Sodan population were part of an elite command force under the Goa'uld Ishkur (9.08 "Babylon"). For years, they pillaged and plundered under his name. The further they ascended among Ishkur's ranks, the more they realized that Ishkur was not a god at all, but merely an imposter. The Sodan determined the true gods were those that came before them, namely the Ancients.
Ishkur branded the Sodan traitors and ordered their deaths. They tried to fight and convert other Jaffa, but the odds were too great, and they were forced to flee. They set out to find Kheb, hoping that their souls would find peace. Instead, their search led them to P9G-844.
Although they soon realized this world was not the Kheb of legend, they discovered the Ancient technology that would keep them hidden and perhaps help them on the path to enlightenment. They continued to worship the Ancients as gods and lived on the planet for 5,000 years, occasionally conducting raids to obtain new primtas (larval Goa'ulds). They would also leave the world to trade for food and other goods and grew their own crops in the village (9.18 "Arthur's Mantle" and 9.08 "Babylon"). Resentful the other Jaffa had not joined them when they first rose against the Goa'uld, they considered the Jaffa's affairs none of their concern, and if Volnek was any judge, considered them inferior warriors (9.08 "Babylon").
A Prior visited the planet and sought to convert the Sodan to the Path of Origin by healing their sick and increasing the yield of their harvests. He convinced the Sodan that the Tau'ri and free Jaffa seeking them out were enemies. When SG-1 went to the planet searching for the Sodan in the hopes of establishing an alliance, the Sodan attacked them. Enemies of the Sodan trespassing on their sacred ground were to be put to death. However, as Mitchell later pointed out, Haikon had not immediately ordered their deaths when they first came through the Stargate. Even then, the Sodan did not take the Prior's words at face value.
However, they did exchange deadly fire with the Sodan hidden using their personal cloaking devices. Mitchell and a Sodan warrior named Volnek were both seriously injured in a one on one battle. The Sodan took Mitchell with them, but were not able to retrieve Volnek before SGC reinforcements arrived.
Mitchell was nursed back to health in the Sodan village. He was trained in the ritual Sodan training to participate in kel shak lo, a ritual battle to the death to atone for spilling the blood of a Sodan warrior. This training was specific to the fighting style of the Sodan, and was a closely guarded secret for a hundred generations. Mitchell was the first outsider to be trained in the method, but at the time they believed the human would die in the kel shak lo ritual soon after learning the fighting style.
Mitchell got to know the Sodan during his time there, and tried to convince them that the Prior was showing them a false faith. He was able to convince his trainer, Volnek's brother Jolan, who in turn convinced some others. In the meantime, Volnek recovered from his injuries after treatment at the SGC. After Mitchell returned home, they sent Volnek back to the Sodan.
The Sodan leader, Haikon, and others, including the recovered Volnek came to believe Mitchell when they discovered for themselves the destructive ways of the Priors and the Ori (9.12 "The Fourth Horseman Part 2"). The Prior had ordered the Sodan kill simple farmers who refused to follow Origin. The Sodan were proud warriors and balked at killing innocent people. They visited another world purported to resist the Ori and discovered the village decimated by a deadly plague. Mitchell revealed that Earth was suffering from a similar plague at that time. The Sodan assisted the Tau'ri in setting up a trap for the Prior in the Sodan village with an anti-Prior weapon developed at the SGC. Daniel Jackson, SG-22, Cameron Mitchell, and eventually even General Landry confronted the Prior in the Sodan village. He attacked Landry before being shot, and probably killed.
Later, the Ori sought revenge upon the Sodan (9.18 "Arthur's Mantle"). A Prior approached Volnek while he was offworld and infected him with a strange condition. After a few days, the warrior became very ill and apparently died from a "rabies-like" illness. Now essentially undead, Volnek went on a killing rampage, slaughtering all the Sodan, including his brother and as many people he could find, not even sparing the children. The village was mostly destroyed. He also disabled the Eye of the Gods, but not before some warriors were able to contact the SGC for help. The only Sodan to survive the massacre was Haikon, though he too was near death when Teal'c and SG-12 discovered him. The team put the Sodan leader on tretonin and tried to treat his injuries.
Volnek began attacking the SG team members. He used a Sodan cloaking device, so the others could not see him. Volnek also disabled the Eye of the Gods, so the SG teams were stuck near the village, including SG-3 and SG-22 who arrived when they did not hear from SG-12. Teal'c used the cloaking device, but although he could now see Volnek, he could not stop him, even by firing his weapon at point blank range. Volnek was eventually destroyed when Teal'c and Cameron Mitchell led him to an explosive trap set by SG-3.
The only Sodan believed to survive the massacre was Haikon. The rest of the civilization was destroyed during Volnek's berserker attack.
- Haikon - Leader of the Sodan. He was greatly respected by his people. They followed his lead when he agreed to follow Origin, and also followed him when he turned away. Haikon was the only survivor of the massacre prescribed by the Ori using Volnek as their deliverer.
- Jolan - A Sodan warrior and brother to Volnek. Jolan was a proud and intelligent warrior with a knack for healing medicines and poisons. Originally planning to avenge his brother's believed death at the hands of Col. Mitchell, Jolan instead ended up friends with the human and believed what he said about the Prior's claims being false. He eventually convinced Haikon of the same. Unfortunately, Jolan was among the first killed by Volnek.
- Volnek - A Sodan warrior and brother to Jolan. Volnek was a proud and stubborn warrior. He suffered a serious staff blast wound when in combat with Cameron Mitchell and almost died. Nine hours of surgery and being put on tretonin saved his life. However, he refused to cooperate with Daniel Jackson and Teal'c and remained loyal to the Ori, even after Tass'an described what happened on his own world. However, he followed his brother and Haikon in turning away from the Ori. After the Sodan's betrayal, a Prior infected him and turned him into a zombified monster. Volnek went on a berserker rage that slaughtered the Sodan population. He was eventually destroyed by a trap set by SG team members.
- The Tau'ri became allies with the Sodan after Cameron Mitchell gained their trust
- The Goa'uld were the enemies of the Sodan for 5,000 years, ever since they rose against their original Goa'uld "god" Ishkur.
- The Ori. The Sodan first believed the Prior and followed the Ori religion, but then broke away when the Prior ordered them to kill innocent simple farmers who would not follow Origin. The Ori later annihilated the Sodan population by infecting one of their number.
- 9.08 "Babylon"
- 9.10 "The Fourth Horseman Part 1"
- 9.11 "The Fourth Horseman Part 2"
- 9.18 "Arthur's Mantle"
- Eye of the Gods
- Kel Shak Lo
- Priors of the Ori
- Prior Plague
- Sodan Cloaking Device
--Aurora 10:18, 27 March 2006 (PST)