Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Great Conclave of Magi

"For Men of Great Wisdom, Great Power, and Great Magick, there must always be Greater Restraint and Responsibility."

There are austere, pristine buildings scattered throughout the globe, their front wooden doors decorated with the image of a eye on a palm, a pyramid, a goat's head or any of another myriad of symbols.  These sites have stood for hundreds of years.  They have been managed by a society whose membership only recently learned to cooperate on a international scale.  The Great Conclave protects and provides community services to mages of all kinds, even if in the modern era the number of magick practitioners is at a all time low.

Prior to 1873, the magi who would form the Great Conclave operated in their own separate clans, societies, covens, conclaves and collectives throughout the world.  Meetings between magick practitioners had always been dangerous, often lethal to both mage and non-mage alike.  Every decade magi would meet to establish or reaffirm agreements between various powers.  These conclaves also were chances for magi to share information and to coordinate against mutual threats.

Regional Conclaves came together, creating bylaws that let Magi govern their members.  Some nations, like the United States, force their magi citizens to join such local Conclaves.  These Conclaves helped to cut down on violent and cruel crimes committed by magi.  The Great Conclave had been a innovative idea, suggested by the more prominent magi (also some of the most secretive about their magick associations).  Mark Twain and others drafted the basic document that formed the Great Conclave, including the Great Laws.

In 1900 the Great Conclave faced trouble when a convention being held in Moscow suffered a attack.  A rogue Black Magick practitioner killed four hundred members of the Conclave.  She would be caught by the Great Conclave, and summarily punished.

In recent years, the Great Conclave has apologized for various acts its committed during World War Two, including some complacency with Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.  Its track record with more aborinal magick practioners has also improved, albeit slowly.  Most imagine that a new reordering of the Conclave is coming up, where more liberal aims will be embraced by the Conclave.  Facing issues with LGBT and other rights that the Conclave has historically buried might help it to bring back some of the magi that left it years ago.

THE GREAT LAWS
Somewhat byzantine, most of the Great Laws were established to satisfy two important concerns.  First was safe conduct and interaction between magi.  The second concern served a more political aim, to keep powers aware of magi satisfied that magi were never acting in anyway to harm, infiltrate or harass them.  The Great Laws are still somewhat dated, having been written before most international law had been created in the 1940s and 1950s.

Violate Not Loyal Men: Magi cannot influence or affect any humans in a way that would be detrimental to the states they live or work for.  This includes killing, charming or reprogramming.

Respect The Property of Others: Magi cannot affect or harm any property that belongs to another with magick, be they magi or non-mage.  In recent years some Magi have tried to extent this over animals, hoping to stop those magi who use magick to harm or kill animals.

Aid Not The Others: Magi are never allowed to aid or assist anything not of this world.  The Great Conclave of late is most concerned with this law, as more magi leave the Conclave to work for powers that are directly helping Others to infiltrate and invade the planet.

PROTECTED BY THE VEIL
Like other organizations, the Great Conclave isn't secretive about its nature.  Almost a hundred percent of humanity still seems ignorant of their existence.  Most people don't even recognize their existence, often thinking of it as being either fictional or a joke.

The Old Masters of the Conclave have pet theories to explain this.  The most popular is the theory of the Veil.  Promoters of the Veil theory suggest that a set of primordial magi created a enchantment over most of Humanity, creating a veil of ignorance.  This veil keeps most from actively recognizing or seeking out the supernatural.  Through this ignorance, most people don't act in anyway that would empower forces that don't have their best interests.

Detractors of the theory like to point out that this doesn't explain the existence of those who can see through the veil.  Neither does it explain away historic magickal catastrophes or cults that were created by Others and their followers, like the Cult of Moloch or the Order of the Neven.

PHILOSOPHY
The Great Conclave believes that magick is a hidden human attribute that still hasn't blossomed into a final form yet.  It seeks an answer to the mysteries about it, ultimately aiming to use it to help all humans ascend.

The Great Conclave also protects many secrets.  Hidden truths about the world it knows could be misused by unwise magi.  Some of these secrets tie into the Others, powerful magickal sites and horrors the Conclave kept hidden instead of let be destroyed.