SAVA, the South African Vampyre Alliance, which has been on the South African landscape since May 2011, is managed by a council referred to as the High Council, and this group features individuals in the community called Magisters. The question has been asked: “what is a Magister?” Okay, have a seat and I will explain it to you.
Since we refer to Magisters almost exclusively with reference to the SAVA, this question cannot be answered without explaining first what SAVA is, and how Magisters fit into the picture in this context. So without further delay, what is the SAVA?
The South African Vampi(y)re Alliance (SAVA) is a formalized expression of the South African Vampi(y)re Community (SA VC) similar in conceptualization to Gotham in the USA, founded and established in May 2011 by the collaboration of various individuals and Groups within South Africa who contributed their input.
The Constitution of the SAVA gives the young SA Vampyre Community a face, forming a High Council to achieve the aims laid out within the SAVA Constitution. The SAVA is in essence the beginning of a more organized and formalized Community of real self-identified Vampi(y)res in South Africa, but in no way lays claim to being a self-appointed governing body for the whole of the South African Vampyre Community. In fact, its mandate gives it control only over members and member Groups by their mutual consent and agreement, and as such, they are free to leave the SAVA at any time.
Since South Africa is divided into 9 provinces, each province has been allocated as a territory within the SA VC in the context of the SAVA. As such, each province or territory has been called a Halo, and each Halo is the responsibility of a Magister of the SAVA, chosen from the membership within that Halo.
The High Council is a committee of nine Magisters of equal stature and each of whom represents the membership of the SAVA residing within one of the nine provinces or Halos of South Africa in terms of community development.
The Halos of the SAVA are demarcated areas portioned out according to the provincial layout and borders of South Africa. Each Halo is in effect, a province. All members and member Groups of the SAVA within a geographic region are associated with the Halo in which they are located, and participate in the affairs of the SAVA under the organizational structure of that Halo.
Each Halo’s affairs are addressed by a Council Of Elders (COE), consisting of House leaders or their Secundi in that Halo, and each Halo has its own COE. All COE’s together form the SAVA Senate. House and Group leaders form the COE and Senate, with one House leader from each Halo acting as Magister of that Halo. In the Mintaka Code, the cypher indicating a Magister, or the Court of a Magister, is the Vampyre ankh:
All nine Magisters together make up the SAVA High Council. The nine Halos of the SAVA are: Adara, Atria, Avior, Gacrux, Ilyatha, Mintaka, Naos, Turais and Zaurak.
The Magister of each Halo (assisted by their Secundus from their Halo) holds a position on the SAVA High Council which is where the actual cooperation, networking and decision-making occurs within the SAVA.
Other House or Group leaders within any particular Halo, who are not Magisters, form a Council of Elders within that Halo, and their task is to assist the Magister in matters of developing the VC and the culture within their region. (Until more Groups join the SAVA, the Lower Council system of the COE and Senate are not likely to function.) Together, all the COE’s from each Halo form the Senate, which performs the same function in relation to the High Council.
I would like to make an important note: The SAVA does not seek to control or rule non-members of the SAVA, but acts as a representative body for member Groups and individuals affilated to the structure.
Therefore, in simple terms, a Magister is an official of the SAVA who bears the responsibility of managing and supervising the building and development of Vampyre culture and Groups within their Halo, and who has organizational authority over only SAVA members within that Halo.