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Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA]  |  Vampires & Vampirism  |  Vampire Community & Subcultural Discussion (Moderators: Merticus, SoulSplat, Eclecta, Maloryn, Zero)  |  AVA Discussion: Vampires; Hierarchies & Elders? 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: AVA Discussion: Vampires; Hierarchies & Elders?  (Read 35982 times)
almost vampire
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« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2008, 05:10:08 pm »

well a community with no leaders is not a community it's just a choatic union of people there would be no black veil and no community rules its not about just being an elder or a primus but as tylor said they have more experience and more ability to find donors and organize the whole community











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Ocean
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« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2009, 03:58:11 am »

Hmm... Why not Mentors? It doesn't seem to have the same attached stigma.

As far as hierarchies go people repond to those who have spiritual authority already. Every group forms its own hierarchy naturally.

We also already know who the leaders are, despite if we are willing to formally recognize them. Leaders also recognize others with that same quality, even if they do not share common interests. When we meet somone who is a leader there is no doubt about their status.

Sometimes its the formal recognition of a leader that creates discord and eventual fracturing of a group, nation, people as others will always have preferences and their own followings.  If a group becomes too large it cannot adequately reflect the feelings of the people it represents, thus it becomes necessary to have a divergence.
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Etheros Twilight
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« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2009, 06:50:44 pm »

Well said...

However, in what otherwise seems a flourish of insanity on my part,

"A rose by any other name, would smell as sweet"

(a leaders by any other names, would cause factions all the same)
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arethia
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« Reply #18 on: January 04, 2009, 02:36:10 am »

The following is a question that was posed for group discussion at TWILIGHT II in Atlanta, GA this past March 2008.  I'd like to continue the discussion here on the AVA forum to gather everyone's opinion and input on the particular subject.  Please answer the question (all parts) below and offer your perspective!


Vampires; Hierarchies & Elders?

Discussion: 
What is an “elder” and do we need elders in the community?   In the absence of calling someone an “elder” do we have a way to acknowledge or recognizing one’s contributions or accomplishments within the community?   Does it hurt newcomers to the community when “elders” or “pillars” avoid official recognition, leaving unscrupulous individuals to adopt titles in their place?  What are the positive and negative influences from the courtly, hierarchical, and pseudo-feudalistic community as compared to the rest of the vampire community?

I am never too good at stating a huge opinion such as this, but I do know that I have my own bit of opinion for something like this.
I know without a group or people, even a small group of people, usually the others will sink terribly or everyone will fall into pieces so easily if you pull it away out of the no where; you always see it in the history books or on the History channel, where a small group (four or five or a few) of people pull away or divide and suddenly others either do part or do neither and suddenly everything starts to divide in two and become into chaos(to notice), yet when there is always one or two or so few people (than  just a "group") in higher grounds than the others, a neutral ground is always met and no one splits as easily, causing everyone to remain the same, the same differences, same choices, as what the dictionary calls, "calm." Without Hierarchies & Elders, everything will quickly become out of place, fall apart, because there will always be one or two people who will always try to grab for the higher grounds -at least that is always what happens in history books from the past, even in this time, you always see it in the newspapers, where one company over-throws another to remain huge for all of "their" customers; churches do the same, though it is not always intentional:  If you watch from afar for a long time and something seems odd and suddenly one church moves into another church and it's combined into a newer church of some kind, you just watch everyone attending at how the commotion starts, rises, then falls, some leave, and usually the majority stays because the same people who are the administrators stay.
So, without Elders or Hierarchies or Administrators everyone would live on their own accords, and eventually you will get those certain individuals who will want Elders/Hierarchies/Administrators, even if it means reflection.
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Malcaius
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« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2009, 05:15:29 am »

this is an intrestinf thread and it has been covered a little bit back on my own forum

Firstly id like to qoute the one man i would consider my greatest teacher and would still call my elder. his name is Stefan

Quote
What is an Elder? This question has been tossed back and forth. Some say the Elders are power-mongering dictators. Others say we're a joke. Some want to be seen as an Elder for some mythological prestige.
Being an Elder is really none of those things. An Elder has the responsibility to lead by example and to teach others; an Elder is supposed to be there to protect the community and it's members and help build it; an Elder is supposed to be there to care for the members of the House (and beyond), to help heal wounds, teach and care. It is a job, not a title; it does not give you the ability to lord and it does not give you the excuse to stand by and watch. Eldership is a 24/7 job; it is likened unto being a parent. It is not a badge to be flashed, but to be a badge of honor; to be upheld and respected but most importantly, to be earned and not bestowed.

And then to qoute myself and my views on this subject.

Quote
the true quality of a leader is someone people trust, someone people can rely on, someone who in times of hardship and stress will shrug their shoulders and take up the burden alone if need be, the kind of person who does'nt ask for power, or need it, the kind of person you'd follow because damn it they just have that edge, like no matter what the world hits them with they'll try their best to help others. the kind of person who would come to your funeral and remember your name and some minor thing you did, even tho they never knew you personally.. the kind of person who'll let themelves be torn apart, slanderd.. even eaten alive for the sake of others... the kind of person who would walk into a town full of troubles and try to help solve them all without asking for anything in return...

this is my idea of a leader... an elder has to be all this and more, not only a leader but also someone wise and respectful, someone who will teach if asked, and guide if followed, someone who cares about the greater good of all, even those blinded and corrupted by there own self intrest, someone who cares not for one group but all of his kind..

i still stand to these thoughts today, thats why i belive i will never been an elder i dont have the strength to take up the trust of so many others and guide them to a better tommorrow. i just know i could'nt do it and i am happily reassured that though i dont have the mental constitution and caring heart required for this sort of role, there are others out there that do. do we need elders? yes i think so because without leadership and guidence any communitie will just stagnate and drift apart.

saddly its true that there are alot of.. unscrupulous individuals out there claiming to be elders and leaders of our communitie, greedy vain creatures who do more harm than good, leading the young astray and creating divisions amoungst the whole communitie (for example the whole sangs are just weak or roleplayers and psi's are the only true vampire, that really annoyed me) and supprisingly they are also the more popular "elders" with their books and their courts and their silly tests and rituals.

but despite all that i belive that we do need those  elders who are truly worthy of the name so that future generations will have teachers and guides in the times to come.
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de libre
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« Reply #20 on: February 21, 2009, 10:37:36 pm »

I think everyone should be looked upon with value, not because they are an 'elder'. Personally, I don't really care for such names, and some of the 'elders' I've heard about I would never want to meet mainly because I do not like the energy vibes I get from them...very sketchy to say the least. Secondly, I am not into 'covens', and a pecking order really doesn't help my dislike for them. When you label someone like that, in a sense it can take a lot away...sometimes add, but it's best to know a person just by their name.

Are there people I look up to? Yes, but that doesn't mean I worship them. I can see the point in all of this and respecting your elders, but at the same time just remember to respect everyone in general. I don't believe in sucking up to 'elders' (vampire community or not) but just being yourself and stating your mind (in the appropriate manner of course).  I also believe that some elders I've seen can be way to full of themselves, but that's like any human being some people just try to attract too much of the wrong power to themselves.

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Maloryn
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« Reply #21 on: February 25, 2009, 09:51:50 am »

Still sticking by my "papa smurf" comment (and still wondering what color a smurf turns if you choke it... purple?) ...

Did want to make another random observation on this topic though:

Like the term 'vampire' itself, the term 'elder' is taken from a completely different context and has several layers of meanings, depending on its usage.  In some context it seems to say 'old'. In others 'respectable'. When you apply it to vampirism it becomes even more confused as it is often used in vampire fiction.

Should there be vampires that are respectable? of course
Should there be an often-self appointed title that any moron can claim in an attempt to get the respect they may not otherwise have? of course not

Is there a happy medium? not that I've ever been able to discern

Titles in the community are all too much like titles in corporate america: the term President sounds great unless people realize you're the one and only employee in value $0 value limited liability company you started with your friends just after high school.

---Mal
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sunseeker
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« Reply #22 on: March 06, 2009, 01:00:53 pm »

Hello. Hmm. How many truths can we handle?? ... lol ... I looked at this forum simply because I first noticed I was unlike everyone I knew about 3 or so decades ago... long before internet or computers for that matter. Anyway I had convinced myself that due to my Catholic upbringing and severe childhood that I was simply in the protection of Angels when stuff would happen. By stuff I mean some cool (almost impossible for a needle to pentrate my skin) or amazing strength; some things were strange -and only explainable by guardian angels.  Anyway, due to changing physical conditioning over the past decade I have had to face that I cannot simply rely on prayer - My needs simply must be filled. I have finally given in and started to allow myself to 'feed' off the energy of a select few again. I have noticed immediate benefits to my health and a settling of the soul - sort of... The hardest part of who I am is the conflict with my religious beliefs.  So, if anyone has any questions on what kind of cool stuff you could experience or some of the scary stuff to watch for.. feel free to ask. I will be the first to tell you - I am NOT an 'elder' - I have simply been who I am for almost 1/2 a century if that counts for anything. Wink
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« Reply #23 on: May 05, 2009, 06:05:47 pm »

It is not just us vampires that have this trait in our society.

The "Elder" is tribal status where no government is currently in place. Such as our Native Americans here in the States back in the day. Even in our own families, it is normal for a head of family to be selected, it is natural for that head to choose an heir. We may not go and call them by their title, but they are written in the inheritance, it is an unspoken truth.

But that just defines who an elder is. What is an Elder exactly? As you could expect, I have some measure of egoism inside when I look upon myself and ask that question, just as every single one of us here does. We look at that and choose which path to walk. The true elder is our subconscious, our inner and higher selves, and in many ways our true selves. This is what it means to be human and evolve as an animal in the material world. What else is there?

But therein lies a problem. If we are truly the only ones who can judge ourselves on what we stand for and symbolize, then what are the qualities in which the community accepts that a person is an elder or not?

This is not the only vampire forum on the internet. Even on the VC forum you found people in disagreement and that is how it should be. A true elder does not give what they know as facts, they simply give light to paths that are already there. Above all things, a good elder knows when to step back and make room for growth and opportunities for others.

It is when we choose not to do that that the enemy comes banging at our gates. That is history, that's exactly what that is. That arrogance is why Rome was obliterated in all but name, and when you really look back at history it doesn't even have that anymore.

The term "elder" was not coined by us. We did not design that term, for the record.
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« Reply #24 on: May 15, 2009, 05:41:41 pm »

The group I am involved with has many Elders and statuses of that nature.  The only difference is that we have certain practices that we learn and the Elders are those who have mastered and can teach these practices.
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pier
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« Reply #25 on: June 23, 2009, 09:40:24 pm »

         Shocked    elders:  These are certain members of a community who have established themselves as just & responsible leaders..  These are people who helped establish local communities, who organize havens, & who work to cooridinate the networking of the scene. 

            :Smiley  While their word does not have to be law they should nevertheless be respected.  They have greater experience than many others, & usually greater wisdom.  Seek these elders out to settle your disputes, to give you guidance & instruction, & to help you establish yourself in the local area.  Appreciate the elders for all their dedication, the community would not exist as it does now.

               Cheesy  We do not have elders on this site, but to me the ones we look to like Merticus, Maloryn, etc as for me they have that respect.  Without them the site would not exist & we would be out of one of the best forums that I know of..  Thanks for everything that everyone does to keep us informed, fot hearing the same question over & over again, but most of all for being their to answer a question even like Merticus when he was away & I didn't know..Thanks for telling the truth even if we don't want to hear it.  Okay I will stop now.



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Eclecta
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« Reply #26 on: July 01, 2009, 10:13:35 am »

I'm so sorry, but none of you can be elders until you are 65.  That's when you get to draw social security, so that's the magical line drawn in the sand.  Smiley 
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Corvis Nocturnum
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« Reply #27 on: October 12, 2009, 07:29:09 pm »

The quote "Elder has the responsibility to lead by example and to teach others; an Elder is supposed to be there to protect the community and it's members and help build it; an Elder is supposed to be there to care for the members of the House (and beyond), to help heal wounds, teach and care. It is a job, not a title; it does not give you the ability to lord and it does not give you the excuse to stand by and watch. Eldership is a 24/7 job; it is likened unto being a parent. It is not a badge to be flashed, but to be a badge of honor; to be upheld and respected but most importantly, to be earned and not bestowed." is without a doubt the most well  written statement on what a leader is.

The ones who come before us, Merticus, Michelle Belanger, Sanguinarius, Father Sebastiaan, Madame Webb, Madame X, etc. have been around for a very long time and by their actions and efforts for others, stepping up to the plate when people in the community need a spokesperson, a leader to ask for advice, community builder, and more. Age is not always a requirement, not always time put in. I was addressed as an Elder once and to my surprise, Michelle and Don Henrie replied, "You got off your *ss and DID something for others, writting books, going on the radio." Having been in the community for only five years and not overly heavy online I was even more humbled when I was nominated to be a member of the VVC.

 I will always strive to do my best to speak out publiclly for everyone I possibly can  as fair and open as I can, but will not speak for everyone flat out. No one has that right.

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razorblade_recon
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« Reply #28 on: February 14, 2010, 01:04:32 am »

I only wish to comment on a portion of this topic for now, and the question was, "Does it hurt newcomers to the community when “elders” or “pillars” avoid official recognition, leaving unscrupulous individuals to adopt titles in their place?" My answer to this is no, it does not. Just because someone avoids a title doesnt mean they avoid the duties, in secret or in plain sight. If I didnt want to be called or even seen as a Vampire it doesnt mean that I suddenly do not do, what I always have. If were talking about stepping down and letting others step in, then yes is my answer. But that is an individuals responsibility and decision.
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Maenad
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« Reply #29 on: February 15, 2010, 04:47:45 am »

I'm so sorry, but none of you can be elders until you are 65.  That's when you get to draw social security, so that's the magical line drawn in the sand.  Smiley 

T____T I'm too young to get it at 65 chances are when I'm that age it will be all gone. T_____T (<- emo moment)

I think there are people that I admire like when I'm on the computer I love listening to Dawkins on youtube (as if I needed proof of my dorkdom) while you can gain knowledge from other people part of everything is looking at the evidence yourself. Your pretty useless in a debate about evolution if you don't understand radioactive dating or homologous structures. The worry if you give anyone power over your thought is that you'll stop thinking all together and just believe what you are told. That's what I advise people against when they wish to have a hierarchy, it's ok to have people you respect however they are not gods and to believe what they say you have to understand it from every angel first. This is why for people who are Atheist they do a lot of research into other faiths on their own, so that they know the questions that people will ask them and they are coming from a knowledge based off evidence not just spiting the company line. (The last bit is for an example)
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