Vampyre Academy For Real?

(Originally posted January 8, 2011) Someone mentioned Witch School International in an earlier debate I was part of.  The TV series “Vampire Academy” was also mentioned. I like the idea of such a resource, if applied to the Vampyre Community *ducks*. Don’t shoot, hear me out first, ok?The idea of such a facility, call it a website like Witch School, is not really new. I think a few Vampyre Community groups have tried to offer courses and knowledge in books in the past, but this is always brought down by a few common factors:

1) The material/doctrine/philosophy or ideology is usually unique to the House or group making it available.

2) Because the material reflects only one group’s views of vampirism, it draws widespread criticism from the rest of the VC.

3) The material is nearly always religious in nature and calls the seeker/noob to become a member of whatever religious cult or beliefs the group is pushing.

4) Nearly always, some kind of fee is required to join, sometimes for each level of progression.

5) Questioning the doctrine is not usually allowed.

I suggest a group or website to host material and present online courses in such a way as to overcome these difficulties or issues:

1) The material/courses should answer direct issues young awakening vampires face when seeking answers. Whether they should be a member of a group or House before accessing such an online resource, is open to debate.

2) I suggest a resource available online which hosts material approved by and even contributed by a panel of representatives which will manage the site or resource in order to maintain credibility within the community. The material can be sourced from a variety of experts on different subjects such as community, feeding, defenses, health matters, and so on.

3) The material should be aimed at a secular market, at the seeker who just wants to know about their nature and the mechanics of how to cope with it and handle the practical side of dayside/nightside, feeding and so on, without having religion forced on them. I agree that theological courses may also be made available, for those who enter via particular paths or who are interested in learning them.

4) The material should be available to the entire VC, and I would like to say without charge, although I think this would open the forum/resource up to people who might not be serious about learning, trolls etc. I think a low nominal fee should be required to demonstrate a level of commitment or seriousness or intent to finish whatever course is undertaken. It might also be better to limit access to the material except via Houses or groups which are registered with the resource (?) – although I think this might defeat the aim of the project when it comes to newcomers or awakening ronin. There would also naturally be a risk that curious Mundanes or those with ill-intent might seek to exploit the information provided and all they need to do to access the information is pay a small fee.

5) Curiosity is a natural part of learning, and questioning statements and doctrine is part of that. I think all learning should be open to debate, after all, education is not supposed to be about brainwashing. A forum can provide ample room for debate.
There are loads of free forums and information storage resources online that can make this work – “all” that is needed is the co-operation of the community to agree on what information should be made available, what courses should be provided and what their content should be (I see difficulty here). Also, naturally, a system of recognition for achievements via this “academy” within the community should be agreed upon.The groups or Houses that support or participate in the resource can provide “staff” or moderators to act as educators on the site, to manage debate with students or to handle enrollments and exams, provide course material etc.

The advantages I can see of such a training/induction resource are listed below:1) Less community ignorance on particular internal issues on Vampyre nature.

2) More consistency within the VC in terms of knowledge of vampire nature.

3) A centralized learning resource would result in a community pooling of knowledge/thought on vampire culture and nature drawn from around the world, resulting in turn in a closer-knit community.

Yes, there is a great deal of dissent among groups about what constitutes a Vampyre, and on the means and ways people are judged to be Vampyres. This is because there is little actual scientific material we can draw on to teach the newcomers to our community, and mostly they would be taught what we know about ourselves and the community. Of course, in order for this to work, there is something required of us – something which hasn’t always been very visible in the past. Co-operation. We will have to agree on many things, but the biggest stumbling block I can see here is agreeing on what is being taught, and how? But on that basis, I think that would be enough, and a good place to start.
This is just my opinion on the subject. Please comment.
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