26 thoughts on “Submitted: Transition of Power

  1. If Maharet offered to pass the Sacred Core to you, would you take it? Knowing you as I do, I could not see you wanting the whole vampiric race to be destroyed. I could see you taking the burden of being the center of it all, just to protect and save others. A hero if you will.

    1. If it came to me, if Maharet wanted to destroy herself and someone needed to take on this burden, I would accept it. Though it would not be an easy decision. Of course, I have no intention of dying, and all efforts have to this point been unsuccessful. I think to myself, to carry the sacred core would be an immense burden. But then I realise, have I not carried nothing but burden my entire immortal life? Even though the sacred core did not reside in me, I was still responsible for its care, for its safety, and for our survival. In this way, I think that to have the essence in me would be no different from the role of caretaker I have carried with me but for these last few decades.

  2. Though, to be honest, I do not see Maharet as the sort to lose her stamina. It is Mekare I wonder about. You see, Mekare was only sustained by her hatred and thirst for vengeance. With her purpose done, how long will she endure?

    That’s a good question, ideed. Have you seen Mekare after she killed Akasha? Do you know what kind of person she is? All known about her is what Maharet revealed in her tale. But she’s finally reunited with her sister. That must mean a lot to both of them.

    Maharet stands as a mother unlike any we have known. Akasha was an absent and elusive sovereign. Maharet upholds standards that we must respect, and I am a man who respects rules and boundaries no matter how they confine me.

    Do feel confined by Maharet’s standarts?

    1. I have seen Maharet on a few different occasions, more importantly when I sought her to have my grievances addressed. Which, as you know, was denied. In some ways, yes I do feel confined because I do not understand what she expects from us or what we should expect from her. She is content to weave hair all night, and when it comes to her wisdom, she is biased, sentimental, and not all together impartial. But I must accept it and come to terms with it, and respect her absolutely. I would protect her with my life, of course. While I may not respect the rules, I respect that rules must be made and we must be held accountable for our adherence to them.

      1. Are you referring to your petition to end Santino’s life permanently? If Maharet would have agreed, how would you have done it?
        This sounds as if Maharet’s wisdom is a personal wisdom, derived more from the heart than from the head. The two of you probably see the world from two very different perspectives.
        But why do you crave hierarchic structures so much? You are so old and experienced, and also able to take responsibility for yourself. Why do you need rules made by someone else when you can make rules to which to stick on your own. After all we’re talking of moral rules.
        The way you put it, it sounds as if all vampires have made a social contract but that is an incomplete one, if it is one at all. I suppose for you it is absolutely logical to feel the way you do. Maharet protects your source of life and in exchange you give up a little of your personal freedom and acknowledge her superior position in jurisdiction, legislative and executive. I don’t want to discourage you but don’t you think that you’re probably the only one thinking that way?
        You are a Roman, you grew up in a remarkably organized state with laws that were unsurpassed for centuries. Maharet grew up with a social organization completely different. Besides, she’s a woman and there’s no way to deny that men and women often think a little differently.

        1. I would have made him burn, just as Thorne did, and in that way let Santino experience the slow agony that I felt. But with mercy that he would die rather than suffer its agonies for centuries. To crawl on the ground like a blackened monster, the degraded state he reduced me to, would be a fitting end for him, before I crush every bone in his body with my hands.

          I was disappointed with Maharet’s judgement, though I respected its authority. She was very much ruling with her heart. Her decision was not based on what was fair to me, but rather based on the fact that she had tender feelings toward Santino and did not wish to lose his company. It was not fair, but I had to accept it.

          But why do you crave hierarchic structures so much? You are so old and experienced, and also able to take responsibility for yourself. Why do you need rules made by someone else when you can make rules to which to stick on your own. After all we’re talking of moral rules.

          Rules and boundaries create civilisation. Within its confines is stability, and with stability comes beautiful things. Without rules, we are all free agents who can do what we wish, and that would be chaos. When someone greater than me is appointed, I accept their authority in important matters, and I naturally defer to them out of respect. However, you are right. I am my own Master is most ways. And if so chosen, I would lead the ship, as it is, toward perfection.

          The way you put it, it sounds as if all vampires have made a social contract but that is an incomplete one, if it is one at all. I suppose for you it is absolutely logical to feel the way you do. Maharet protects your source of life and in exchange you give up a little of your personal freedom and acknowledge her superior position in jurisdiction, legislative and executive. I don’t want to discourage you but don’t you think that you’re probably the only one thinking that way?

          I wonder what John Locke would have to say about this. Yet you are correct. We have an unstated social contract wherein we respect Maharet’s power and authority in exchange for her housing the sacred core that sustains us all. If need be, we would protect her with our lives. At least I would. Fortunately, Maharet legislates very little. Maharet is by no means the silent monarch that was Akasha, but she does respect our autonomy enough that most matters she does not attend to.

          Alas yes, I do fear I may be the only one. Yet I am not afraid to be alone in my ideals and values. In fact, the further we get from my time, the more it seems I am alone. Yet this will not deter me. We are nothing without our values and our sense of duty.

          Gravitas, honestas, virtus, dignitas, auctoritas, firmitas, providentia, et patientia habeō.

  3. Sorry to jump in but I couldn’t resist…hmm what would a world look like if you were the leader of us all?

    John Locke, not a person one runs in to in regular conversation, I love it!

    “Gravitas, honestas, virtus, dignitas, auctoritas, firmitas, providentia, et patientia habeō.”

    All such wonderful attributes to possess, I think when one has mastered each one it can afford, Maxima libertatis, maximam responsabilitatem.

    1. It would be a bizarre world. A strange amalgamation of Ancient Rome, the Renaissance, and what I imagine life in Outer Space would look like (in other words, Tokyo). It would be a return to the values of reason and purpose, which would never prize qualities in a person like idleness or selfishness. Forever the pursuit of progress, ascension, and beauty, while never losing a love for the past. Man-made beauty everywhere.

  4. Wow that sounds like a veritable utopia, with enough beauty to make one cry.

    “It would be a return to the values of reason and purpose, which would never prize qualities in a person like idleness or selfishness. Forever the pursuit of progress, ascension, and beauty, while never losing a love for the past.”

    I long for a world like this too. Truly sounds like a world to inspire.

    1. This is absolutely the way in which I personally live my life, and I find great satisfaction in it. I do not understand how people can think that there is nothing in this world worth learning and aspiring to. I cannot imagine simply making do with things as they are. Should we not seek to the end our own personal betterment, and indeed that of the world?

  5. I completely agree with you and live my life in much the same way. Always the pursuit… In fact this month I started a year long project to help foster and strengthen certain attributes that I aspire to. Each month focuses on a certain quality, you have a daily tracker in which you can evaluate your progress and a journal so you can keep track of your thoughts. For example this month I am focusing on diligence; some other virtues included are temperance, knowledge, patience, and independence. Some will be easier than others for me. I find once you have enriched yourself you are better equiped to help those around you.

    I cannot imagine simply making do with things as they are.

    Me either, I do not understand this way of thinking.

    In regards to your comment above about Outer Space; what is it that attracts you to it?

    1. Is this an official programme? Or is it something you heard about, and then must do/organise independently. In any case, it sounds wonderful. I can think of a few people I would very much like to put on such a programme.

      In regards to your comment above about Outer Space; what is it that attracts you to it?
      In my time, we could not conceive of space. It was a great and ambiguous shroud that we never bothered to question too deeply, and really went no further than basic philosophical understanding. We were far more interested in what happened on the ground to question what purpose space might be.

      When man first began to look to the stars and planets, to find new worlds and possibilities, I was thoroughly fascinated. I love looking through telescopes at these distant reaches that I, in my immense power and strength, can never touch. I think of just how vast and infinite space is. I feel overwhelmed when I then think of just how large the emptiness is. Imagine the life, made to evolve its own way by its conditions. Imagine the technology of other places, made by brains far different from our own.

      1. I can think of a few people I would very much like to put on such a programme.

        Oh that made me smile, there are some for me too my Friend!  The program is both official but open to personal modification.  The website lays out suggestions for each month with  descriptions and examples of each.  There is a PDF for the daily tracker in which you write the activities that will help you attain the chosen virtue.  The website also recommends to evaluate yourself and to write it in a journal set aside for this purpose.  For me the only downside thus far is my nightstand has become more cluttered with an extra journal, this one makes three.

        I have always loved star gazing myself too.  My Dad taught me the constellations and how to use them for directions when I was young. I know that if given the opportunity I would love to travel into space…as long as I could stay away from experiences like the people in “Prometheus” or “Aliens” had.

        Marius I truly enjoy reading about time from your perspective; the range of your sight.  To be able to see how the world has evolved throughout time, how previously unthinkable notions are now adopted as truth or discarded as fiction. How do you keep your head about you when reflecting on the vast amount of life you have lived? Do you ever get stuck, so to speak, in a certain age or time akin to how a mortal may with a certain genre of books or movies?

        1. I will tell you what the biggest problem is: synthesising all of the information into a singular thought process. When I try to reflect on the ages past, I find myself overcome by the sheer volume of detail, of information, and I get lost within it.

          How do I explain how I feel about religion or morality, about time and progress? I have two thousand years of thought and knowledge, and any subject is a book in and of itself of information and experience. Like being in the middle of a tornado, unable to grasp anything, watching everything whirl around you.

  6. How disorienting that must be for you, I am not sure if I would be able to endure it.  That being said (and I feel kinda bad now asking this of you, now knowing what it is like for you, so no pressure) I would very much like to hear your thoughts on morality.  The good and the bad, what things that have fallen away that you would like to see in society again and what you wish would disappear from today’s society.

    In reading my last post I realized I forgot to include the website for the program.  It is   http://www.beinggeorgewashington.com  I should say some of the months are for those who want to strengthen their religious or spiritual beliefs/faith but if that focus doesn’t fit, one can chose another attribute to strengthen.

    Just an after thought, perhaps you can “help” those you believe need to participate in this program; “help” them to do it with out realizing they are doing it 🙂   

    1. I think there is a terrible disconnect between the way that people see themselves, and the way that they act. We say we are an advanced and enlightened society, yet we have a lot of social ideas that are terribly backwards and ignorant. If people want to imagine themselves as enlightened, they need to behave as such. Which means not treating people are lesser beings because of their gender or sexual preference. To accept that morality is not, “act the way I think everyone should act” and more “let us treat everyone good and equal.”

      The idea of sin was critically damaging to society. All in one, we had a set criteria wherein people were situated less on a sliding scale and more into two camps of good and bad. We need to accept that we cannot further society based on social ideas from centuries ago.

      There needs to be a more, “live and let live” concept of community. Just be good to each other. Do not pick apart a person’s lifestyle, a harmless lifestyle, to find differences by which to persecute them. Accept that though someone may not live life just like you, they may still be good people. It shocks me the arbitrary reasons people have for disliking one another. Political affiliation? Who they choose to sleep with? How many facial piercings they have? What ignorant reasons.

      1. So you see the disconnect as well.  I try to take people at their word but this do as I say not as I do behavior makes that difficult.

        The idea of sin was critically damaging to society. All in one, we had a set criteria wherein people were situated less on a sliding scale and more into two camps of good and bad. We need to accept that we cannot further society based on social ideas from centuries ago.

        If I am looking at the idea of sin from the standpoint of the Bible I think it is on a sliding scale, at least for me.  I dont believe any one person is all good or all bad the ability to be both lies with in us all.  It is our choices that sets us apart.  Also I believe there was something in there stating not to judge others.  To a degree I agree with you about the idea of sin being damaging.  In so far as society as whole is not enlighten enough not to use sin as a tool to opress others.  I can’t help but think of all the people that have cut off ears because they believe that enjoyment of the sound of music was a sin.  Or to pay money for blessings or pardons to lessen your guilt and thusly your time in purgatory.  Especially if you are guilted into believing you are a bad person because you commit a sin no matter what it was. That was the place I was in at least, so I think that is why I felt drawn to life as a Nun.  Thankfully I never took any vows, just spent my weekends at the convent learning and helping the Sisters.  Looking back I am glad I did not become a Nun I would have been miserable.

        Do not pick apart a person’s lifestyle, a harmless lifestyle, to find differences by which to persecute them. Accept that though someone may not live life just like you, they may still be good people. It shocks me the arbitrary reasons people have for disliking one another. Political affiliation? Who they choose to sleep with? How many facial piercings they have? What ignorant reasons

        Ignorant reasons indeed!  Much of what you wrote and more I have experienced.  I am the exact opposite if what you described, I love learning about lifestyles different to my own and viewpoints opposing mine.  Not to argue about who is right or wrong but to simply debate and discuss.  To listen to one another with open minds and hearts, without preconceived notions of what the other should be.

        1. But you either sin or you do not (granted, there are moral and venial sins, and these are weighted concepts), and this is black and white. There is no such thing as a half-way sin, or something being a little sinful. At least, not in what I know of sincere Roman Catholicism. Perhaps people are more liberal in some of the Protestant religions in other countries? By good or bad, I was speaking of behavior and not necessarily of people. Though if we look at some wars in the past, particularly of the 1600s, there is a distinct pattern of black and white intolerance lent overall to people as individuals. Use, of course, as justification to then massacre them.

  7. Yes you are correct you either sin or you don’t sin, but not every sin carries the same weight in Gods eyes.  Take for example the two commandments Adam and Eve received in the Garden.  First do not eat the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.  Second go forth and multiple the earth. 
    Two commandments but Adam and Eve were not able to follow both.  In order to multiply the earth they had to be mortal, they had to fall.  So then first Eve then Adam ate of the tree so they could fulfill the greater of the two commandments.  I know it sounds like we are set up to fail from the beginning but the overall goal is to grow and evolve and by sinning we do. That is not to say to sin is noble just that there is no way around it.  Sin is comparable to getting in trouble with your parents as a child, it’s going to happen.  To try to conceptualize how I relate to God I think of Him as my father and me His daughter.  I think sin is along the same lines. Sometimes you make a big mistake and sometimes they are small, call it mortal or venial sins; but yes sin is sin.  We are all sinners but that does not mean we are all damned, thus enters in the Atonement.  The whole foundation of Christianity. 

    That is how I have come to understand it at least. Although I grew up in the Novus Ordo Catholic church my entire family was excommunicated because my parents divorced. When I turned 18 I became active in the pre Vatican II Roman Catholic church and was going to be a Nun in the Dominican order.  After a time that was not a good fit for me either because of the fear and the guilt that was pushed onto me for very small things. It left me feeling unworthy. The church I now belong to is under the Protestant umbrella but is not Protestant per se. So perhaps you are right about being more liberal, or perhaps it is a deeper understanding. What ever the case may be please keep in mind I am in no way a theologian or even well learned in this matter.  I can only share my understanding as I see it.  I may not even be in line with the teachings of my church….  Also this is something that I solely measure myself with, it is not intended for others.

    Just be good to each other. Do not pick apart a person’s lifestyle, a harmless lifestyle, to find differences by which to persecute them. Accept that though someone may not live life just like you, they may still be good people.

    This goes back to what I have said before about personal responsibility.  I am in 100% agreeance with you that there needs to be a “live and let live” attitude.  For example an acquaintance of mine proclaims herself to be a Christian.  A group of friends, including her, were planning on attending a surprise party for another friend.  When this “Christian” found out our friend was gay and the party was being thrown by his partner she refused to attend saying God did not want her to go because they were gay.  These two men are good people and sadly for her she will be missing out on two lovely people because of hatred and bigotry.  I just don’t understand this…

    By good or bad, I was speaking of behavior and not necessarily of people. Though if we look at some wars in the past, particularly of the 1600s, there is a distinct pattern of black and white intolerance lent overall to people as individuals. Use, of course, as justification to then massacre them.

    Yes you have come to the crux of the matter; intolerance, as well as the desire for dominance and power. 

    1. Oh yes, some sins are more forgivable than others, but they are sins. In truth, corrupt people blurred the boundaries of right and wrong. This meant, of course, that doctrines had to be stretched, amended, reinterpreted, or just outright discarded. I have always thought it quite odd that this God should create flawed and faulty people, but punish them so severely for their imperfections. It seems entirely too severe. But then if we were born perfect, we would not need God because there would be no necessary path to spiritual perfection and purity.

      If someone sins and does not know it, can they be punished just the same as someone who commits the same sin fully aware that they are sinning? I should hope not.

      If someone commits a sin and feels that it may be expunged by money, lands, or any other gift, is their soul once again without burden? I should hope not.

      The act of a sin or sins and their forgiveness is a complex issue, and naturally varies depending on one’s confessional faith. For instance, you certainly could not convince a Calvinist that sins were to be forgiven because that would nullify one’s predestination.

      This is why the Middle Ages and the period of Early Modern Europe is such a complex historical topic.

      Why would you have selected the Dominican order particularly?

      1. We talk a lot about Christianity but I was wondering as an Atheist why do you think we were born faulty?  Do you think there is a grander purpose for us on this earth, or is there just nothing after we leave here?

        If someone sins and does not know it, can they be punished just the same as someone who commits the same sin fully aware that they are sinning?

        I had the same question and we just talked about this past Sunday.  You are right, a person would not be held at fault.  For it to be sin you have to know it is a sin in order to be guilty of it.  In conjunction with this question I also pondered the fate of those people that did not have the opportunity to know about Christianity or “this God” as you put it. (I rather like your description, as I am sure you have seen so many come and go)   I thought what a cruel and heartless God to punish those just because they haven’t been able to learn of Him. I was taught that they will be held to the standards of their society or belief system.

        For instance, you certainly could not convince a Calvinist that sins were to be forgiven because that would nullify one’s predestination.

        Funny you should bring up the Calvinist, I was just refreshing my knowledge of their beliefs the other day.  I was reading about how education was taken from private schools to public schools in early America.  At that time the major debate was between the Calvinists and Unitarians.  While read I thought of asking your opinion on the matter: Which do you think is better, private or government run schooling?

        Why the Dominican order?  A couple reasons:  One the emphasis on study, and a person relationship with God.  But to tell the truth those were afterthoughts.  The Dominican order was what the Sisters were in the church I went to.  Looking back at the whole experience, the preparation and the study, I was not truly ready.  I was too young and had not lived life at all.  Yet I was willing enough to take vows.  I know myself well enough to know that if I took them I would never recant, my word is my bond.  Thusly I am glad I did not take them.

        1. I believe that there is nothing left of us when we die, only matter that begins to decay into absolute nothingness. We were born faulty simply because we are, and self-improvement has a place in life even in the absence of God(s).

          I thought what a cruel and heartless God to punish those just because they haven’t been able to learn of Him. I was taught that they will be held to the standards of their society or belief system.

          Yet there are religions that believe in things such as original sin, and one must be saved in order to be alleviated of these sins. They hold everyone accountable equally, including children and those in places that have never heard of Christ and God as he exists now.

          Which do you think is better, private or government run schooling?

          This is a difficult question because both have their merits. In a personal economic sense, not every family has the money to send their children to private school, and so public schools are necessary. Yet because public schools can charge tuition, they are generally better “funded” and can afford more resources and pay their teacher’s better, which attracts the “highly qualified teacher,” though that is not to say that public schools do not have amazing educators. Also, since private schools do not receive funding state or federal funding (at least to my knowledge), they are less bound to rules and regulations that the government determines. With the failure of programs like No Child Left Behind, it must be nice to be released of those fetters and be able to pursue more appropriate and effective educational strategies.

          People need to accept that public school is a necessity. Some communities dislike having to pay taxes for public schooling, citing reasons like, “I do not have any kids in school, therefore I do not know why I must pay for them.” Yet they will also cry out against crime in their community or the high rates of unemployment and people seeking government “handouts.” It is all tied together, and a firm, safe community that is productive begins with education. We must find a way to bridge the gap between the accessibility and low cost (for parents and guardians) of public education with the quality of private education. Which means money.

  8. Yes I agree with you regarding the monetary aspects of public verses private schooling but I was talking strictly education wise.  The NCLB has failed but now it is being replaced with Common Core.  With this reform the federal government is pushing for total compliance and even the private schools are to be held to these standards thus taking away their autonomy.  It is quite the quagmire, especially when everyone has different ideas on what is important regarding our youth.
      

    1. I’ve been reading about the Common Core State Standards, which I have only now heard about.

      If private schools do not accept federal funding, will they still be expected to comply with the regulations?

  9. Yes they will be held to the same regulations as would those who chose to homeschool their children. If the private schools are looking for accreditation then Common Core standards must be implemented. Even thought the Common Core website denies it is federally mandated, the fact still remains that there can be no changes to the curriculum at the state level. The standardized testing needed for entrance into college will be based on common core teaching. As of right now the new standards only cover math and English for the majority of states. With English they plan on decreasing the amount of classical literature required and increase the informational texts. I believe the split would be 70% to the informational text and 30% to the classical. One example of the informational text was a manual from the EPA. Some educators believe this may lower the students’ ability to think analytically. There is also CSCOPE that will change the curriculum for science and history. As far as I know Common Core is trying to buy out CSCOPE so they are under the Common Core umbrella as well. Another facet of Common Core is that even if a child is enrolled in public school, the parents are not allowed to see the actual syllabus.
    I have done a goodly amount of research on the topic because education is so important. There are several blogs, informational sites, and twitter feeds regarding Common Core and CSCOPE. I have to tell you that because of you I have seriously considered starting my own word press on Common Core for my state but I just do not have the time available to dedicate to it.

    1. I think it is a terribly bad and depressing idea to remove classical literature from any curriculum. It seems to me that this Common Core has parts of itself designed like a factory to reproduce people who can do one skill one way and lack any real capacity for originality. And yes, thinking analytically.

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